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Article #578 (730 is last): From: aa789@cleveland.Freenet.Edu (Bruce D. Nelson) Newsgroups: freenet.sci.comp.atari.mags Subject: ST Report:12-Apr-96 #1215 Reply-To: aa789@cleveland.Freenet.Edu (Bruce D. Nelson) Posted-By: xx004 (aa789 - Bruce D. Nelson) Date: Mon May 6 17:11:33 1996 Silicon Times Report The Original Independent OnLine Magazine" (Since 1987) April 12, 1996 No. 1215 Silicon Times Report International OnLine Magazine Post Office Box 6672 Jacksonville, Florida 32221-6155 STR Electronic Publishing Inc. A subsidiary of STR Worldwide CompNews Inc. R.F. Mariano, Editor Featured in ITCNet's ITC_STREPORT Echo Voice: 1-904-268-2237 10am-5pm EST STReport WebSite http://www.streport.com STR Publishing Support BBS THE BOUNTY INTERNATIONAL BBS Featuring: * 5.0GB * of File Libraries Mustang Software's WILDCAT! Client/Server BBS Version 5 95/NT Featuring a Full Service Web Site http://www.streport.com Join STReport's Subscriber List receive STR through Internet MULTI-NODE Operation 24hrs-7 days Analog & ISDN BRI Access 904-268-4116 2400-128000 bps V. 120-32-34 v.42 bis ISDN V.34 USRobotics I-MODEM NT-1 FAX: 904-292-9222 24hrs The Bounty STReport Support Central 1-904-268-4116 FNET. 620 : Leif's World 1-904-573-0734 FNET. 690 : PASTE BBS 1-206-284-8493 FNET. 489 : Steal Your Face BBS 1-908-920-7981 MNET - Toad Hall BBS 1-617-567-8642 04/12/96 STR 1215 The Original Independent OnLine Magazine! - CPU Industry Report - MS BookShelf 97 - MS Buys AHA! - Apple ships 7.5 Free - Social Insecurity - IBM to license MAC OS? - ESCOM Sells Amiga - Euro-Modem - Free Front Page Beta - Hoff Joins Sega! - People Talking - Atari Memento Sale Digital, MCI & MS Allies Quarterdeck Answers Infoworld Florida Internet Tax Threat STReport International OnLine Magazine Featuring Weekly "Accurate UP-TO-DATE News and Information" Current Events, Original Articles, Tips, Rumors, and Information Hardware - Software - Corporate - R & D - Imports STReport's BBS - The Bounty International BBS, invites all BBS systems, worldwide, to participate in the ITC, Fido, Internet, PROWL, USENET, USPOLNet, NEST, F-Net, Mail Networks. You may also call The Bounty BBS direct @ 1-904-268-4116. Enjoy the wonder and excitement of exchanging all types of useful information relative to all computer types, worldwide, through the use of excellent International Networking Systems. SysOps and users alike worldwide, are welcome to join STReport's International Conferences. ITC Node is 85:881/250, The Fido Node is 1:112/35, Crossnet Code is #34813, and the "Lead Node" is #620. All computer enthusiasts, hobbyist or commercial, on all platforms and BBS systems are invited to participate. WEB SITE: http//www.streport.com CIS ~ PRODIGY ~ DELPHI ~ GENIE ~ BIX ~ FIDO ~ ITC ~ NEST ~ EURONET ~ CIX ~ USENET USPOLNET CLEVELAND FREE-NET ~ INTERNET ~ PROWL ~ FNET ~ AOL IMPORTANT NOTICE STReport, with its policy of not accepting any input relative to content from paid advertisers, has over the years developed the reputation of "saying it like it really is". When it comes to our editorials, product evaluations, reviews and over-views, we shall always keep our readers interests first and foremost. With the user in mind, STReport further pledges to maintain the reader confidence that has been developed over the years and to continue "living up to such". All we ask is that our readers make certain the manufacturers, publishers etc., know exactly where the information about their products appeared. In closing, we shall arduously endeavor to meet and further develop the high standards of straight forwardness our readers have come to expect in each and every issue. The Publisher, Staff & Editors Florida Lotto - LottoMan v1.35 Results: 4/06/96: 1 of 6 numbers with 1 match in 21 plays >From the Editor's Desk... After last week, one can only wonder if there is anything else to harp about. How about. the present congress and senate has given the baby bells back to AT&T, allowed corporate giants to merge, ally or otherwise join forces in an attempt to "setup the US Consumer" for another long, long gouge ride. AT&T has for a very long time grabbed high dollars for its long distance lines. now, with the new communications bill, its gonna be a free for all .all over again. Only with a twist. The Baby Bells are crying over the Internet voice modems and AT&T "loves" it! Why? Perhaps the lost revenues by the Baby Bells will lower their net value and AT&T can begin buying them back into the fold. But more importantly, AT&T is going back into the residential telephone business. Its going to get interesting. A decade ago, our lawmakers saw a justified need to force AT&T to "let go" of the population's throats. What does Newt & Co. do? Give AT&T the green light to do it to it all over again. You can bet it will not be so easily undone as it was. AT&T learned many lessons. One good thing is coming from all this and that's the end of the reign of the "Bell Heads". Telephone service in the USA, while touted to be the best in the world, is about to become just that. The "Bell Heads" will no longer be able to hold things back due to their ignorant stubborn old fashioned ways. Florida's Internet Tax Proposal... To think the "public official" who proposed this new Tax Law probably used the net free while in college makes me want to puke! Would you believe ..a few of the "slick and shifty" bean counters in Tallahassee, FL have gotten together and decided that the new Internet Technology is fair game for their grubby grabbing tax hands?? Yessir, one expressed the thoughts that they "deserved the right" to tax the new technology. We're looking at taxing all E-Mail traffic at this time. He added. As I listened to this State Government Official who is "supposed" to representing me. I said to myself.. "you have no idea what you playing with "Mr. Official Bean Counter"!! You think Florida's Tourism is down now?? What till they get started bad- mouthing Florida with its high crime rates, speed traps and gouge artist tourist traps. you ain't seen nothing' yet." Can you imagine if. the users being hammered by Florida's Proposed Internet Tax begin telling everyone on the NET about the crime rates in their local areas on a daily basis?? About all the murders, rapes, drug busts, etc., that do not make the news? (If you think that doesn't happen, then listen to this.. either yesterday or the day before, a LIVE Bomb was discovered in the Jacksonville County Courthouse.. not a word was mentioned in any of the newspapers or on the local TV newscasts. I discovered this incident from a friend's wife and daughter. Both of whom work in the State Attorney's Office located in that building.) Such revelations will paint a wonderful picture of Florida. Care to wager telling the whole truth about Florida's Crime Rate will send bunches of tourists elsewhere?? If the State's Elected, Appointed and Civil Servant Officials find it difficult to listen to and abide by the wishes of the people ..then it stands to common sense and good reason the people must make themselves heard quickly. Before another NEW, very unwelcome, TAX Proposal becomes LAW. Keep an eye on our WebSite for a list of Florida Politicians (by Wednesday). You as Internet Users, can send E-Mail to any or all of them indicating your wishes that Florida not set such an UGLY hateful precedent. Many other States, greedy for your dollars, are waiting to see the outcome. They will certainly jump on the bandwagon and TAX the NET too if Florida manages to ram this thing through! Ralph. Of Special Note: http//www.streport.com STReport is now ready to offer much more in the way of serving the Networks, Online Services and Internet's vast, fast growing site list and userbase. We now have our very own WEB/NewsGroup/FTP Site and although its in its early stages of construction, do stop by and have a look see. Since We've received numerous requests to receive STReport from a wide variety of Internet addressees, we were compelled to put together an Internet distribution/mailing list for those who wished to receive STReport on a regular basis, the file is ZIPPED, then UUENCODED. Unfortunately, we've also received a number of opinions that the UUENCODING was a real pain to deal with. So, as of October 01,1995, you'll be able to download STReport directly from our very own SERVER & WEB Site. While there, be sure to join our STR list. STReport's managing editors DEDICATED TO SERVING YOU! Ralph F. Mariano, Publisher - Editor Dana P. Jacobson, Editor, Current Affairs Section Editors PC Section Mac Section Atari Section R.F. Mariano J. Deegan D. P. Jacobson Portable Computers & Entertainment Kid's Computing Corner Marty Mankins Frank Sereno STReport Staff Editors Michael Arthur John Deegan Brad Martin John Szczepanik Paul Guillot Joseph Mirando Doyle Helms John Duckworth Jeff Coe Steve Keipe Guillaume Brasseur Melanie Bell Jay Levy Jeff Kovach Marty Mankins Carl Prehn Paul Charchian Vincent P. O'Hara Contributing Correspondents Dominick J. Fontana Norman Boucher Daniel Stidham David H. Mann Angelo Marasco Donna Lines Ed Westhusing Glenwood Drake Vernon W.Smith Bruno Puglia Paul Haris Kevin Miller Craig Harris Allen Chang Tim Holt Patrick Hudlow Leonard Worzala Tom Sherwin Please submit ALL letters, rebuttals, articles, reviews, etc... via E-Mail to: CompuServe 70007,4454 Prodigy CZGJ44A Delphi RMARIANO GEnie ST.REPORT BIX RMARIANO FIDONET 1:112/35 Internet email@example.com Internet CZGJ44A@prodigy.com Internet 70007.4454.compuserve.com Internet STReport@AOL.Com WORLD WIDE WEB http://www.streport.com STReport Headline News LATE BREAKING INDUSTRY-WIDE NEWS Weekly Happenings in the Computer World Compiled by: Dana P. Jacobson HP Updates Printer Language Hewlett-Packard Co. has announced the next generation of HP Printer Control Language (HP PCL), the defacto industry- standard printer language. HP PCL 6 now offers modular, object-oriented commands that are designed to take advantage of graphics-intensive applications. HP notes that the product also includes font- synthesis technology for true what-you- see-is-what-you-get (WYSIWYG) printing and better document fidelity. Other features include a faster return to applications, faster printing of complex graphics, more efficient data streams for reduced network traffic and backward compatibility. "As goes PCL, so goes the printer industry, because PCL is the industry- standard link between PCs and printers," says Carolyn Ticknor, vice president and general manager of HP's LaserJet solutions group. "PCL 6 will give business users improved ease of use and better performance and print quality for today's increasingly complex documents." PCL 6 will be included in new HP printers as well as in printers from other manufacturers. HP Unveils New Ink-Jet Printers Hewlett-Packard Co. has introduced a new line of color ink-jet printers designed for small office and home office users. The HP DeskJet 820C Professional Series printers are HP's first color ink-jet printers custom- engineered exclusively for Windows users. The new printers, which are set to sell for less than $400, are Plug-and-Play-ready for Windows 95 and support Windows 3.1 and 3.11. The DeskJet 820C printers can print at speeds of up to 6.5 pages per minute in black text and 4 ppm in color -- up to twice as fast as most low-cost ink- jet printers. Additional features include an envelope feeder that allows users to print envelopes one at a time and support for manual duplex printing. The printers also offer 50 professional TrueType fonts. The DeskJet 820Cse model includes HP's Quick-Start tool, a CD-ROM that aims to provide small-business and home- office customers with tools to help make their business communications more effective, including a guide to printer setup. Also included is a copy of Microsoft Publisher. Apple Ships Software for Free Apple Computer Inc. is waiving shipping and handling charges on its System 7.5 Update 2.0 Mac OS system software, and making the software free of charge through May 31. Reporting from Cupertino, California, the Dow Jones News Service quotes Apple as saying it made the move in response to an "enormous" demand for the product, which is causing Apple's servers to become overloaded. System 7.5 Update 2.0 is a new Mac OS system software update designed to enhance overall system stability while delivering some performance improvements for Apple Macintosh and Mac OS-compatible computers. DJ says localized versions of the system update will be available to international customers in many countries by the end of the second quarter of 1996. Apple also plans to update the Macintosh System 7.5 retail upgrade package to incorporate the improvements in System 7.5 Update 2.0 this summer. Bell Atlantic to Offer Net Link Bell Atlantic Corp. has become the latest of the regional telephone operating company to announce a full suite of Internet products for businesses and consumers, including high-speed links and an offer to manage companies' sites on the World Wide Web. The company also said that by July, it will offer consumers unlimited access to the Internet for $19.95 a month, matching the lowest rates in the industry. Users will have access to Netscape Communications Corp.'s Internet software. "The move," writes reporter Jared Sandberg in The Wall Street Journal this morning, "represents the latest foray from a regional Bell company into the frenetic Internet industry. All of the Baby Bells, including Pacific Telesis Group and Ameritech Corp., are offering business access to the Internet and planning to launch consumer services by the end of the year. Many believe the Baby Bells, by leveraging their expertise in building networks and massive customer lists, could provide the much-needed reliability and ease of use often lacking in the industry." Bell Atlantic says its newly created Internet Solutions division would offer its 1.5 million corporate customers and roughly 12 million residential customers simple navigational tools and localized online information such as local sports scores and local government information. Says Robert Beran, president of the Internet Solutions division, "Our overall goal is to make the Internet as simple as using the telephone." Singapore Firms Renew Hayes Bid In Singapore, engineering/electronics company Acma Ltd. is reviving its plans to take over U.S. modem maker Hayes Microcomputer Products Inc. after enlisting new partners. The Reuter News Service quotes an Acma statement as saying two companies listed on the main board of the Stock Exchange of Singapore and a third, SP Quek Investments Pte Ltd., a company controlled by Acma Chairman S.P. Quek, will take stakes in Hayes. Earlier, Acma announced an initial proposal to take over Hayes was scuttled when Canada's Northern Telecom withdrew from a joint takeover bid. Nortel and Acma were each to inject $17.5 million for a combined 49 percent stake in Hayes. Acma says now it will take up a further $3.6 million in Hayes, resulting in a total investment of $20.13 million for 28.2 percent of Hayes, which recently implemented court-approved reorganization after filing for bankruptcy protection. The Singapore firm said it also will make $7.48 million in convertible loans to Hayes. Says Reuters, "Under the new takeover plan, the two SES listed companies will take a total share of $6 million in Hayes, SP Quek Investments another $2.4 million and the balance of $12.0 million will be subscribed to by other investors from Hong Kong invited by Dennis Hayes, the company founder and chairman." Reuters says Acma renewed its commitments to the acquisition because of "significant concessions which will give the company more influence in the restructured Hayes." The Acma statement says, "Acma will nominate two directors to the Hayes board while its chairman, Quek Sim Pin, will also join the board as a third directorrepresenting new Singapore investors." Reuters says Dennis Hayes will remain as Hayes chairman, but "the Hayes board will appoint a new chief executive officer who will report directly to the board." The appointment is expected next month. Acma said the revised shareholders agreement is expected to be signed within the next few days, "after which the completion will be subject to confirmation by U.S. authorities," Reuters reports. Escom Sells Amiga Technologies German computer retailer Escom AG says it has signed a letter of intent to sell its unit Amiga Technologies GmbH to Visual Information Services Corp o f the United States. Reporting from Bonn, the Reuter News Service says Chicago- based VIScorp also plans to buy the intellectual property rights to Commodore Business Machines, but that Escom will retain marketing rights for Commodore products. In a statement today, Escom said the transaction was valued at around $40 million, and must now to be submitted for approval by the companies' management. Last January, Escom, a computer manufacturer headquartered in Bersheim, Germany, finalized a licensing agreement with VIScorp to add the Amiga operating system to Viscorp's new set-top TV appliance, Electronic Device. At the time, VIScorp officials said adding the Amiga operating system to ED would allow users to access any online service, local bulletin board service and any address on the Internet at speeds thousands of times faster than a conventional telephone modem. Access will be allowed through a TV remote control, a computer keyboard, a touch- sensitive pen or the microphone that's into ED. In 1995, Escom AG acquired all Commodore and Amiga licenses, patents and trademarks. Chip Sales Drop Sharply Unexpectedly, U.S. computer chip sales have taken a nose dive. The Semiconductor Industry Association reports its book-to-bill ratio was 0.80 in March, meaning chipmakers got only $80 in new orders last month for every $100 worth of chips they shipped. This breaks February's record as the lowest since the SIA began keeping track nine years ago. A month ago, the trade group reported February's book-to-bill ratio was 0.90. It has now revised that to 0.89. "We weren't expecting to see such a large drop in March," analyst Charles Boucher of Hambrecht & Quist in San Francisco told business writer Catalina Ortiz of The Associated Press. However, Boucher added the numbers weren't out of line with the slowdown in demand for PCs as well as bloated stockpiles of chips among computer manufacturers. Boucher says orders soon should pick up again -- maybe as soon as this month -- and that investors shouldn't be alarmed by the results, "but I think they will." The SIA said that March semiconductor orders totalled $3.33 billion while billings were $4.16 billion. In March 1995, bookings were $3.90 billion and billings were $3.39 billion. "Semiconductor sales have been sluggish," Ortiz writes, "because demand among Americans for personal computers is cooling after several years of torrid growth. About half of all chips wind up in computers; the rest become part of consumer electronics products, cars and home appliances. Adding to the slowdown in demand is an excess of semiconductors PC makers have on hand." The book-to-bill ratio was above 1.00 all of last year, peaking at 1.19 in July, then declining to 1.12 in December. It fell to 0.92 in January. But despite the latest gloomy figures, the SIA says the U.S. market appears to be stabilizing as PC makers use up their inventory, AP reports. The group still forecasts strong overall growth in the industry by the end of the year. "While the American market is slowing down," says AP, "ones overseas continue to grow vigorously. Sales of microprocessors ... jumped 105 percent in Japan and 46 percent in Europe." CD-ROM Publisher Changing Name One of the industry's oldest CD-ROM publishers is undergoing a name change. The Princeton, New Jersey-based Bureau of Electronic Publishing Inc. says that effective immediately it plans to do business under the name "Thynx." "When founded in 1988, Bureau of Electronic Publishing Inc. was an appropriate vendor name for Bureau's products, which were sold exclusively into schools and libraries," notes a statement issued by the company. "The company name needs to reflect our entire customer base and our corporate vision: to enrich, empower, and entertain through multimedia," adds Larry Shiller, the firm's chairman and CEO. The company will keep Bureau of Electronic Publishing as its official name and BEPI remains the NASDAQ symbol. The firm will use Thynx in its correspondence and has filed for a trademark for the name. Web to Host Virtual Trade Show The world's first virtual trade show -- with keynote speakers, new products demonstrations and the exchange of business cards, all by computer -- is being hosted on the Internet's World Wide Web later this month. The April 23- 25 InterAct '96, being staged by InfoWorld, Stratus Computer Inc. and Time magazine, can be "attended" at no cost by anyone who registers. "It redefines the trade show business," director Francois Gossieaux told reporter Natasha Wanchek of United Press International, "and increases possibilities for conducting business without incurring travel expense." And, backers say, it simplifies the trade show experience by allowing attenders to personalize the events to their own scheduling needs and interests. Participants will use the InterAct '96 Intelligent Navigator to answer questions about trade show interests, software, hardware and hot topics they would like to have flagged. The Navigator then informs the attender of discussions and events missed, changes in speakers and other information of interest. Three kinds of online discussion rooms will be featured, including rooms for technical topics, chat rooms linked to partner booths and question-and-answer speaker sessions that follow presentations. Presentations can be viewed live with real-time video or in text. Attenders will choose between the standard Web page format that uses Hypertext Markup Language (HTML) and the more complex 3-D Web page that uses Virtual Reality Markup Language (VRML), depending on their computer capabilities. Says Wanchek, "The 3-D trade show booths and chat sessions will be visible to anyone with a VRML browser, and interactive avatars, figures that users see moving throughout the trade show floor, are already available with Black Sun Inc.'s CyberGate technology. After traveling into the 3-D space, a sprawling black and blue grid, users will use their computer mouse and keyboard to walk up to virtual booths and view real-time product demonstrations, download video presentations and chat online with company experts." Details on the conference are available on the Web at Web address http://www.interact96.com. Florida Eyes Net Business Tax Proposed Tax Called a STATE GOUGE! Net businesses are gearing up for a fight in Florida over a state proposal to tax businesses that provide access to the Internet. Protesting the plan -- which calls for the tax on business connections to the Net and online services, not personal or recreational users -- business owners yesterday sent thousands of e-mail messages and faxes to the state capitol in Tallahassee. Writing for The Associated Press, reporter Bill Bergstrom says a House Finance and Tax Committee workshop that expected to address the issue ran out of time and put off debate until next Monday. "The tax is a new interpretation of an old law," says Bergstrom. "if the business is classified as a taxable telecommunications service, Internet service providers must pay the government 2.5 percent of gross receipts. The tax would be 7 percent on subscription fees or usage charges for connecting to computer networks, including commercial services like CompuServe and America Online." But business owners say the new tax is unfair because the affected companies already pay taxes on phone service. "Residential and commercial phone- service users," says AP, "already are subject to a 2.5 percent state utilities tax and commercial customers pay additional sales taxes." George Johnson of the Florida Chamber of Commerce told the wire service several other states -- including Ohio, Illinois and New York - are considering a similar tax but none have enacted it. Bergstrom says Jim Marchant, owner of Mercury Communications in Gainesville, set off the debate last year when he asked his chamber of commerce how he should tax his customers, and the chamber asked the state Department of Revenue. "After reviewing the laws," write Bergstrom, "the state decided commercial computer connections met the definition of a taxable telecommunications service that had existed on the books for decades. Protests over the ruling prompted the department to delay collecting the tax until July 1." Netscape Licenses Antivirus Software Symantec Corp. says it is licensing its Norton AntiVirus Internet Scanner to Netscape Communications Corp. The software will be included in the Netscape Power Pack 2.0 for Windows and companion utilities, as well as in plug- ins for Netscape Navigator. The deal's terms weren't disclosed. Symantec notes that its Norton AntiVirus Internet Scanner provides virus protection by automatically checking for viruses as users save files downloaded from the Internet. The software can detect more than 7,300 viruses and eliminates almost all rogue codes, says Symantec, including Word Macro viruses and the Boza Virus, which targets the Windows 95 operating system. "Cruising the information superhighway without virus protection is like driving your car without insurance. You can do it, but why take the risk?" says Mary Engstrom, general manager of Symantec's security business unit. "This integration of Norton AntiVirus with the Netscape Navigator ... represents an easy new way for Internet users to protect while they connect." Microsoft Introduces Bookshelf 1996-97 Edition: Provides Even Quicker Access to Expanded World of Information New Content Includes Internet Directory, Concise Encarta World Atlas REDMOND, Wash. - April 8, 1996 - Finding up-to-date information quickly with the Microsoftr Bookshelf r CD-ROM reference library has been made even easier with today's announcement of the 1996-97 Edition. With one click, users of all ages have access to nine of the latest reference works, including the new Microsoft Bookshelf Internet Directory 96 and the Concise Encartar 96 World Atlas. "Since Microsoft introduced Bookshelf nearly 10 years ago, each edition has incorporated valuable new innovations that have helped Bookshelf earn a loyal following as one of the most trusted and recognized products in its category," said Patty Stonesifer, senior vice president of the interactive media division at Microsoft Corp. "The new features in Bookshelf 1996-97 Edition have been developed to meet the needs of today's users who want quick access to timely and relevant information - including information on the Internet." New Features Make Finding and Using Information Easier Than Ever Bookshelf 1996-97 Edition includes the following new features: Bookshelf Internet Directory 96. The new Bookshelf Internet Directory 96 is a guide to nearly 5,000 useful and interesting sites on the Internet. The Internet Directory contains overviews and visuals of resources such as the World Wide Web, Gopher and FTP sites, mailing lists, and Usenet newsgroups, as well as a glossary of common Internet terms. Whether a user needs to find a specific fact or just wants a great starting point for browsing, the Internet Directory aims to make it as easy as possible, providing one-click access to the listed sites when used with an Internet browser. With the addition of the Internet Directory in Bookshelf, Internet resources can now be included in searches on any topic. Monthly updates to the Internet Directory will be available online at no charge. Bookshelf 1996-97 Edition also includes Microsoft Internet Explorer version 2.0 and one month of no-charge access to MSNT, The Microsoft Network (for new subscribers in the United States or Canada only; long-distance or toll charges may apply. The software to access MSN is a feature of the Windowsr 95 operating system. Access to and use of MSN requires payment of a separate fee). Concise Encarta 96 World Atlas. Derived from the Encarta 96 World Atlas, this resource helps users keep up-to-date with the latest facts about the world by providing a quick way to locate the world's continents, most of the countries, states and provinces, and many cities. The atlas also features 54 easy-to-read maps with pop-up information, including pronunciation of location names, audio national anthems, and information about disputed borders. These maps can also be copied and pasted directly into documents created in applications such as Microsoft Word and the PowerPointr presentation graphics program. Updated Year in Review. Bookshelf is more than a powerful reference tool for work or education - it's also fun to use. The popular Year in Review is one example of the creative side of Bookshelf - it makes for entertaining browsing while keeping users up to date. Year in Review offers a fun way to sample highlights of the past year's news. Users can see and read about news events such as the rescue of American pilot Scott O'Grady from Serb-held territory in the former Yugoslavia, or Baltimore Orioles shortstop Cal Ripken Jr. breaking Lou Gehrig's record for most consecutive games played in Major League Baseball. A Fresh New Look. The new interface in Bookshelf 1996-97 Edition allows users to search all nine reference sources more easily than ever before, ensuring that the most thorough search is performed and the most relevant answers are delivered. Customized searching across any combination of books and media is also available. With its streamlined look and convenient hints about which areas are interactive, the interface encourages users to explore all the content available in Bookshelf. Multimedia Brings the World of Information to Life Bookshelf 1996-97 Edition brings information to life in a way no printed book can by containing more sights and sounds than ever before, including more than 200 new images of musical instruments, animals and well-known paintings, for a total of nearly 2,000 images; 54 maps; audio clips totaling five hours of sound, from famous quotations to musical scores; more than 100 video clips and animation sequences on topics from news events to dangerous animals; nearly 200 national anthems; and more than 80,000 pronunciations, 8,000 of which are new or have been re-recorded. In addition to the new Internet Directory and Concise Encarta World Atlas, updated versions of the following works are also included in Bookshelf 1996- 97 Edition: ú The American Heritager Dictionary, Third Edition ú The Concise Columbia Encyclopedia ú The Original Roget's Thesaurus of English Words and Phrases ú The World Almanacr and Book of Facts 1996 ú The Columbia Dictionary of Quotations ú The People's Chronology ú National Five-Digit ZIP Coder and Post Office Directory School Edition Extends Learning The school edition, available to schools, libraries and museums, includes a free Teacher's Activity Guide to enhance and extend the learning experiences in Bookshelf 1996-97 Edition. The handy three-hole-punched guide features a hands-on introduction to Bookshelf 1996-97 Edition resources and more than 20 student activities for exploring the weather, creating multimedia presentations, learning about music and more - all designed to help teachers integrate Bookshelf 1996-97 Edition into the classroom curriculum. Product Availability and System Requirements Microsoft Bookshelf 1996-97 Edition is available now for the Windows 95 and Windows version 3.x operating systems. The version for the Macintoshr is scheduled to be available in late May and will include native support for the Power Macintoshr. Each version of Bookshelf will retail for approximately $54.95. Licensed users of previous versions of Bookshelf can receive a $10 rebate from Microsoft on the new version. The school edition includes the Teacher's Activity Guide at no additional cost. To run Bookshelf 1996-97 Edition for Windows, users need a multimedia PC with a 486SX/33 MHz or higher microprocessor; Windows 3.1 or later or Windows 95; 4 MB of memory; at least 4.5 MB of available hard disk space; a Super VGA 256- color monitor; and a double-speed or faster CD-ROM drive. A sound card with speaker or headphones and a Microsoft Mouse or compatible pointing device are strongly recommended. Internet access is required for Bookshelf Internet Directory 96 updates and hot links. For more information about Bookshelf, visit the Bookshelf World Wide Web site at . Founded in 1975, Microsoft (NASDAQ "MSFT") is the worldwide leader in software for personal computers. The company offers a wide range of products and services for business and personal use, each designed with the mission of making it easier and more enjoyable for people to take advantage of the full power of personal computing every day. Microsoft, Bookshelf, Encarta, MSN, PowerPoint and Windows are either registered trademarks or trademarks of Microsoft Corp. in the United States and/or other countries. American Heritage is a registered trademark of Houghton Mifflin Co. World Almanac is a registered trademark of Funk & Wagnalls Corp. ZIP Code is a registered trademark of the U.S. Postal Service Macintosh and Power Macintosh are registered trademarks of Apple Computer Inc. The Microsoft Network is operated by Microsoft Corp. on behalf of Microsoft LLC. The ZIP Code database is licensed from the United States Postal Service. Microsoft is a nonexclusive licensee of the United States Postal Service. The price at which Microsoft Bookshelf 1996-97 Edition is sold is neither established, controlled or approved by the United States Postal Service. Copyright (c) 1995 by the United States Postal Service. All rights reserved. The ZIP Code database contained in Microsoft Bookshelf 1996-97 Edition is intended for reference purposes only and may not be used for the purposes of qualifying for postal rate discounts. Microsoft Announces FrontPage 1.1 With New Pricing and Availability Of Free Beta on World Wide Web New $149 Price Delivers Power of Web Publishing to Broader Base of PC Users REDMOND, Wash. - April 8, 1996 - Microsoft Corp. today announced that Microsoftr FrontPageT 1.1, the new version of its critically acclaimed tool for easily creating and managing Web sites, is available in beta form for immediate download at no charge. Microsoft also announced that the estimated retail price for FrontPage has been lowered from $695 to a special introductory estimated retail price of $149, and that the Microsoft FrontPage server extensions, previously priced at $200 each, are now free from Microsoft. Microsoft Office for Windowsr 95 customers will be eligible for a $40 rebate. The FrontPage 1.1 beta and server extensions are available from the Microsoft Web site at Widespread retail availability of FrontPage 1.1 is expected by the end of May 1996. "With FrontPage, Web publishing is not just for webmasters any more," said Chris Peters, vice president of Microsoft's Web authoring product unit. "The combination of FrontPage's ease of use, rich features, aggressive pricing, and integration with Microsoft Office helps bring Web publishing to the broadest range of computer users." Web Publishing Made Easy FrontPage 1.1 includes a number of technical breakthroughs that provide users with a fast and easy way to develop and maintain professional Web sites without programming. Designed for both individual users and collaborative work environments, the FrontPage client-server architecture supports authoring and Web-site management from a user's desktop, across a corporate LAN, or over the Internet. FrontPage 1.1 is designed to look and work like Microsoft Office applications, allowing a vast number of users to leverage their existing knowledge. FrontPage 1.1 includes the following features: ú New Easier installation. FrontPage 1.1 offers an improved setup allowing users to be up and running fast. ú New WYSIWYG table support. FrontPage 1.1 makes it easy to create WYSIWYG tables, giving users direct control over all table features. ú New HTML Frames Support. FrontPage 1.1 provides a Frames Wizard offering existing frame templates or the ability to create a custom frame grid. ú New Auto Recalculate Links. FrontPage 1.1 lets users automatically update all occurrences of a hyperlink throughout the Web when a file is moved or renamed. ú New WYSIWYG image alignment. FrontPage 1.1 image alignment is fully WYSIWYG, so users can see how the image will actually appear. ú New Integration with Microsoft Office. Microsoft FrontPage 1.1 has a consistent interface and shares features with Microsoft Office such as multiple level undo and spell checking. Users also can open documents from and save documents to FrontPage webs from within Microsoft Word 95 and Microsoft Excel 95. ú FrontPage Editor. A WYSIWYG editor that makes it easy to create and edit Web pages with no knowledge of HTML. ú FrontPage Explorer. A visual Web site manager that allows users to graphically view and manage a complex Web site. ú Personal Web Server. Server software that allows users to stage Web sites and host webs on their computer. ú WebBotT components. Drop-in Web server functionality such as full-text searching, threaded discussion groups, and surveys, without requiring complex CGI scripting or any setup. ú Wizards and templates. Automated content creation tools that allow users to interactively build Web pages, providing them with preformatted templates to which content can simply be added. ú Multiuser remote authoring. Ability to set permissions for multiple authors to enable collaborative Web creation and management. ú Server extensions. Software (available for download from the Web at no charge) for popular Windows NTr operating system and UNIXr Web server platforms that allows proper hosting of FrontPage-created Webs. Server extensions for Microsoft Internet Information Server are scheduled to be available on April 22, 1996. "Web Documents" Strategy Allowing users to create and edit Web documents easily is a key aspect of Microsoft's desktop applications strategy. Microsoft believes the same broad category of users for whom word processing and spreadsheet documents are the most common daily business communication formats today will author webs for corporate intranets or the Internet in the near future. FrontPage extends the notion of document creation to include a variety of document types such as HTML pages and Microsoft Word, Microsoft Excel and Microsoft PowerPointr presentation graphics program files, all connected by hyperlinks. Microsoft Office applications already offer a complete set of Internet Assistants that allow users to publish to the Web without complex HTML programming. The combination of Office applications and FrontPage provides a complete Web publishing solution for the broadest range of business users. Microsoft FrontPage 1.1 has a consistent interface and shares features with Office such as multiple-level undo, spell checker, and the ability to change font sizes, styles and colors. FrontPage 1.1 also allows users to update Office documents in webs by automatically launching the appropriate Office application from inside FrontPage Explorer. In addition, from the Microsoft Web site, users can download a FrontPage Open and Save add-in, which enables them to open spreadsheets and documents from a FrontPage web, or save them from Microsoft Excel 95 and Microsoft Word 95 to a FrontPage web. "Integration between FrontPage and Office is a smart strategy aimed squarely at intranets, where business users are expected to rapidly increase the sharing of information and collaboration online," said Stephen Auditore, president of Zona Research Inc. "This announcement clearly strengthens Microsoft's position as a key player in the Web and intranet content-creation market, and alters the competitive environment, emphasizing content creation as a horizontal activity on a par with word processing." Special Introductory Price of $149 Through March 31, 1997 FrontPage 1.1 will be available through March 31, 1997, for a special introductory price of $149 (estimated retail price). In addition, existing customers of Microsoft Office 95 or any of its standalone applications are eligible for a $40 rebate. Customers who have purchased FrontPage 1.0 are eligible for a free upgrade to FrontPage 1.1 once the final retail product is available, expected to be before the end of May 1996. Founded in 1975, Microsoft (NASDAQ "MSFT") is the worldwide leader in software for personal computers. The company offers a wide range of products and services for business and personal use, each designed with the mission of making it easier and more enjoyable for people to take advantage of the full power of personal computing every day. Microsoft, FrontPage, Windows, WebBot, Windows NT and PowerPoint are either registered trademarks or trademarks of Microsoft Corp. in the United States and/or other countries. UNIX is a registered trademark in the United States and other countries, licensed exclusively through X/Open Company Ltd. Microsoft Announces Internet Newsgroups For Peer-to-Peer Discussions on Microsoft Products Boosting Internet Presence and Providing Another No-Charge, Easy-to-Access Support Choice for Customers REDMOND, Wash. - April 9, 1996 - Microsoft Corp. today announced the addition of no-charge Microsoft-sponsored NNTP newsgroups on the Internet to its family of Information Services offerings. This new service boosts Microsoft's Internet presence and further addresses customer demand for one-stop information and services over the Internet. Microsoft is investing in the newsgroups to create a community in which customers can share technical information about Microsoftr products and technologies. Microsoft Newsgroups are scheduled to be live and accessible to customers on April 15, 1996, via the Support area of the Microsoft World Wide Web site "Our goal is to provide accurate and timely information that is widely available and affordable for our customers, and the Internet newsgroups are one more way for us to meet this goal," said Linda Glenicki, general manager of AnswerPoint at Microsoft. "Customer discussion groups provide a rich source of technical information, and the increasing popularity of the Internet allows us to provide access to this information to a very broad set of customers." Microsoft Newsgroups on the Internet will replace Microsoft-sponsored forums on CompuServer as of April 20. CompuServe customers can easily link to the Microsoft support Web site and the newsgroups from the Microsoft Connection area on CompuServe. In addition, CompuServe will offer third-party forums on Microsoft products. Customers currently access the Microsoft Frequently Asked Questions, Knowledge Base, and Software Library more than 850,000 times per week on the Internet. The addition of Microsoft Newsgroups rounds out Microsoft's Internet offerings by providing an interactive environment for customers to send each other messages and responses about Microsoft products. Customers need only an NNTP-compatible newsgroup reader and Internet access to connect to Microsoft Newsgroups at no charge (Internet connection charges apply). Microsoft MVPs (most valuable professionals) will provide technical answers and foster the growth of the online community. Microsoft will stay involved in Microsoft Newsgroups, monitoring responses for accuracy and assisting MVPs as needed. The MVP program recognizes Microsoft customers who voluntarily assist others in customer-to-customer discussion areas. Microsoft MVPs come from a wide range of backgrounds and professions, yet they all share one key attribute: a willingness to give time, expertise and advice to enhance other customers' technical skills. "Being an MVP is a natural extension of my desire to help others solve their computing roadblocks," said Ross Pfaff, who was recognized as an MVP in August 1995. "Whether it's a mission-critical situation or a home- entertainment problem, assisting fellow computer users as an MVP allows me to give back some of what I've been given: knowledge and satisfaction." For more information on the MVP program or how to become an MVP, please see the About Support area of the Microsoft World Wide Web site (http://www.microsoft.com/supportnet/). Founded in 1975, Microsoft (NASDAQ "MSFT") is the worldwide leader in software for personal computers. The company offers a wide range of products and services for business and personal use, each designed with the mission of making it easier and more enjoyable for people to take advantage of the full power of personal computing every day. Microsoft is either a registered trademark or a trademark of Microsoft Corp. in the United States and/or other countries. CompuServe is a registered trademark of CompuServe Inc. Digital, MCI and Microsoft Ally to Offer Integrated Business Solutions Companies Expand Relationships to Deliver Intranet, Messaging And Groupware Solutions From MCI April 9th Press Conference: Bellevue WA - Left to Right Bob Palmer, Chairman & CEO Digital Bill Gates, Chairman & CEO Microsoft Corporation Bert Roberts, Chairman & CEO MCI BELLEVUE, Wash. - April 9, 1996 - Digital Equipment Corp., MCI Communications Corp. and Microsoft Corp. today announced they are delivering integrated intranet, electronic mail and messaging, and groupware business communications services. Digital Chairman Bob Palmer, MCI Chairman Bert Roberts, and Microsoft Chairman Bill Gates stated that this alliance builds on existing agreements and leverages MCI's communications expertise and integration capabilities, Digital's technology and support services, and Microsoftr software products and technology. Incorporating the combined expertise of the three companies, MCI will package and deliver local and wide area end-to-end managed network services. Initially targeting the U.S. business market, the solutions will be marketed by MCI under its recently announced Enterprise Network Solutions initiative and supported by the company's networking, Internet and communications technologies and the consulting and implementation expertise of its systems integration subsidiary SHL Systemhouse. The underlying components of the service's first offerings will include Digital's client-server computing and support strengths and components of the Microsoft BackOffice family of integrated server software - Microsoft Exchange Server, Internet Information Server and the Windows NTr Server network operating system. "Large corporate customers and small businesses alike will benefit from the leading-edge turnkey communications solutions that enable them to better serve their customers through gains in efficiency and enhanced communications capabilities," Roberts said. "MCI will leverage the world's leading hardware, software and network services to deliver the next generation of enhanced intranet and messaging applications for its business customers." Electronic Mail, Messaging and Groupware Working together, the three companies intend to develop a fully integrated suite of managed electronic mail and messaging solutions, which will be marketed and licensed by MCI. These solutions combine MCI's robust messaging network; Digital's Alpha server systems; and the Microsoft Exchange server software, the first messaging platform with integrated groupware and Internet connectivity. The suite will provide customers with a "single source" managed environment for enterprise electronic mail and groupware. The service also provides systems management, operations, administration and help-desk services to provide customers a turnkey managed electronic mail environment. Because of the dramatic increase in Internet use, electronic mail and enhanced messaging services have become critical to business productivity. As a result, the business is expected to grow to $62 billion by the year 2000. Following are benefits of this powerful combination of products and technology: ú Installation and management. Seamless delivery, installation and management of hardware and communications services - from a single point of contact and with one high standard of network performance and reliability. This will allow businesses to achieve enterprisewide messaging and interoperability. ú Messaging services. A comprehensive package of messaging services ranging from basic electronic mail services, such as Internet electronic mail, to premium electronic mail and messaging services that integrate directory functionality, message storage and gateway services with reliable, secure delivery. ú Network and applications management. Around-the-clock network and applications management, which takes advantage of the global network management capabilities of MCI and the client-server telecommunications management information platform (TeMIP) management software from Digital to ensure reliable message delivery. ú Systems integration. Systems integration and services expertise will be delivered by MCI's SHL Systemhouse with support from Digital. ú Groupware services. A comprehensive package of groupware services ranging from simple bulletin boards and discussion databases to more sophisticated sales-tracking applications will be developed on Microsoft Exchange Server public folders. Public folders are replicated databases that can be used to distribute and share information both inside and outside an organization. MCI has also announced it will use Microsoft Exchange Server for its internal messaging platform. MCI will integrate Microsoft Exchange Server with the MCI Mail infrastructure to provide enhanced messaging and groupware capabilities to its employees and customers. "Microsoft Exchange was created to meet the messaging, groupware and Internet electronic mail requirements of companies today and in the future," Gates said. "Providing a reliable and high-performance solution to today's distributed workplace, Microsoft Exchange enables work teams spread across an enterprise to share information and collaborate as if they were across the hall. The combined services of Microsoft Exchange Server and the communications, network management and computing capabilities of MCI and Digital offer customers a complete infrastructure for deploying mission- critical business solutions." Intranet Networking Services The three companies will work together to develop solutions that will enable MCI to help businesses increase workplace collaboration and productivity by offering a package of managed intranet solutions. Included in the initial offerings will be MCI WebSite Services and MCI Enterprise Connect. Intranets, private web-based Internet networks accessible only within an enterprise, are used to connect employees and business partners to critical corporate information. Intranets are also used for file sharing, document transfers and establishing interactive bulletin boards within an enterprise. "This alliance combines all of the technologies and services required for businesses to gain the enormous productivity benefits of a corporate intranet," Palmer said. "Digital, MCI and Microsoft will bring to the intranet market the same innovations they have already delivered to the Internet." Industry analysts estimate the current $400 million market for intranet services, software and hardware will reach $8 billion by 1998. It is also projected that by the end of the decade, 90 percent of all Web servers and software sold will be for intranet applications. The end-to-end managed network solution combines the world's leading Internet technologies to provide the following products and services: ú MCI WebSite Services. Provides Web site content creation, hosting, access and Internet security and management. ú MCI Enterprise Connect. A component of MCI's new Enterprise Networking Solution initiative, MCI Enterprise Connect offers a range of intranet and Internet connectivity options over MCI's Internet backbone, including dedicated, frame relay, SMDS, ISDN and remote dial-up access. ú Search engine and interactive tools. A suite of technologies from Digital that provide Internet search and indexing capabilities, workgroup collaboration software for online audio, and document conferencing with remote access and security. ú Web site and browsing software. MCI will package leading Internet software with its intranet solution, including the following: ú Microsoft Internet Information Server. These new services will be built upon Internet Information Server (IIS), the only Web server integrated into Windows NT Server. IIS is an easy-to-use yet powerful platform for Web applications. ú Customized versions of Microsoft Internet Explorer. MCI will offer privately branded versions of Microsoft Internet Explorer to businesses both for their own internal use and to provide to their customers. Microsoft Internet Explorer is the first cross-platform Internet client to integrate ActiveXT technologies, which enables businesses to create, view and share highly interactive applications and content. ú MCI will adopt Windows NT Server and Microsoft Internet Information Server for its Internet and Intranet Web Hosting Services. Digital Equipment Corp. is the world's leader in open client-server solutions from personal computing to integrated worldwide information systems. Digital's Intelr and Alpha platforms, storage, networking, software and services, together with the industry-focused solutions from business partners, help organizations compete and win in today's global marketplace. MCI (NASDAQ "MCIC") is one of the world's largest and fastest-growing diversified communications companies. With annual revenue of more than $15 billion, MCI offers consumers and businesses a broad portfolio of services including long distance, wireless, local access, paging, Internet software and access, information services, outsourcing, business software, advanced global telecommunications services, and music distribution and merchandising. An MCI company, SHL is a leader in client-server computing and offers a wide range of consulting and systems integration services as well as customized software solutions. Founded in 1975, Microsoft (NASDAQ "MSFT") is the worldwide leader in software for personal computers. The company offers a wide range of products and services for business and personal use, each designed with the mission of making it easier and more enjoyable for people to take advantage of the full power of personal computing every day. Microsoft, BackOffice, Windows NT and ActiveX are either registered trademarks or trademarks of Microsoft Corp. in the United States and/or other countries. Digital and the Digital logo are registered trademarks of Digital Equipment Corp. For product information, customers may call: (888) 200-7002 Quarterdeck Corp News STR Focus What About InfoWorld's "Accuracy"?? Questions and Answers on "Bad Memory Rising," InfoWorld, March 18, 1996 InfoWorld, in its March 18, 1996 issue, performed a comparative test of memory management software for Windows 3.1 and Windows 95 systems. Two of Quarterdeck's leading products, QEMM 8.0 and MagnaRAM 2, were included in this review. Quarterdeck met with the staff of InfoWorld's test labs on March 22, 1996, and as a follow-up would like to provide the following questions and answers in response to the article. Q. Do you agree with InfoWorld's conclusions? A. No. While Quarterdeck holds InfoWorld in high respect, there are many aspects of its conclusions with which we disagree. Part of the goal of the study was to compare the memory management capabilities of the products surveyed, and this aspect of the evaluation was underplayed. The article did not give weight to the benefits that our products (and those of our competitors) provide: allowing you to load more programs, and to use larger programs and data sets, and to extend the Windows and DOS environment in other ways. We would like to have seen more detailed data on resource management, and more thorough breakdown of performance results in each of the three memory management categories identified in the article. While we choose to disagree with the methods by which InfoWorld came to its conclusions, we acknowledge our respect for InfoWorld and its right to make its own judgments, even when its conclusions do not match our expectations, observations, or experience, nor those of our customers, our competitors, and other members of the press. Q. Do you agree with InfoWorld's testing methods? A. No. The objective test results were obtained through automated testing, which uses the computer itself to simulate a user performing large numbers of operations. This is often done by simulating many keystrokes very quickly, as quickly as the machine can process them. MagnaRAM, either on its own or as a component of QEMM 8, does much of its work when the system is idle. During normal use, a Windows system will have large amounts of idle time-- while the user is pausing, even between single keystrokes. Since the system is not idle during the course of automated testing, MagnaRAM does not get a chance to complete its work. This causes MagnaRAM to occupy memory without providing benefits. In the normal course of operation of a Windows system, operated by a person rather than a program, there are significant amounts of idle time in which MagnaRAM can do its work. InfoWorld has acknowledged that automated testing could reflect poorly on MagnaRAM's performance. Subjective tests are by definition subjective, and as such their results are difficult to confirm or refute. Quarterdeck notes with thanks that InfoWorld has expressed willingness to provide us with more detail on some of its observations. Quarterdeck has not observed results that match InfoWorld's experience. MagnaRAM is highly configurable and clearly documented. Our customers' experiences and our own have shown that some of the configuration options available through MagnaRAM's user interface can help to balance speed and memory. InfoWorld did not choose to take advantage of these options. Q. Do you have to repartition or reformat the hard drive in order to remove QEMM's QuickBoot feature, as the InfoWorld article states? A. No, not at all. There are several easy and clearly documented ways to disable QuickBoot in the unlikely event that you do not want to take advantage of it. The simplest is to use the QSETUP program, either from DOS or from Windows, to disable the feature easily. Additionally, QuickBoot is disabled when the QEMM386.SYS driver is not loaded; there are several well- documented ways of achieving this as well. Quarterdeck representatives have been assured by InfoWorld staff that a correction will be printed on this point. Q. Does QEMM support Windows 3.1, Windows 95, and Windows NT, as the InfoWorld article states? A. QEMM supports all of DOS, Windows 3.1, and Windows 95. It does not, however, provide any support for Windows NT. InfoWorld intends to print a correction on this point. Q. Will MagnaRAM and QEMM incorporate the Windows 95 call_when_idle VMM call that InfoWorld suggests? A. MagnaRAM (in the standalone version and as a component of QEMM) already includes the call_when_idle function, in both its Windows 3.1 support and its Windows 95 version. InfoWorld will note this fact in a future edition. Indeed, as noted above, MagnaRAM's implementation of call_when_idle may explain some of the performance deficiencies observed in InfoWorld's automated testing. Q. How can I ensure that MagnaRAM is performing best for me? A. The MagnaRAM documentation contains many hints and tips for configuring MagnaRAM so that it works best for you. MagnaRAM, both in the standalone version and as a component of QEMM 8, allocates 25% of the physical (RAM) memory available when Windows starts up, and uses this memory for its compression buffer. Reducing the size of this buffer may provide a possible increase in speed at the expense of the amount of memory that can be compressed. If you are dealing with large data sets of highly compressible memory (as in a database or graphics program), you may find that increasing the size of the buffer allows you to keep more data in memory, and to reduce access to the Windows virtual memory swap file. A nearly-full hard drive can degrade the performance of Windows regardless of MagnaRAM's presence; InfoWorld has acknowledged the possibility that a lack of hard drive space could have affected the results of its testing. For more information on configuring MagnaRAM to your specific needs, please consult the MagnaRAM documentation and on-line help system. Q. Will Quarterdeck improve MagnaRAM and QEMM? A. Absolutely. While we are proud of our products and stand behind them, we recognize that there is always room for improvement in every product. Since its inception, Quarterdeck has been setting the standard in memory management and other technologies on the PC platform. Expect this to continue. We intend to listen not only to InfoWorld, but also to our customers, and to other members of the press who point out viable ways to enhance our products and services. Q. Is Quarterdeck's company information, as listed in the article, correct? A. No. There are several points of Quarterdeck's company information which are inaccurate as printed in the InfoWorld article. DESQ was the first multitasking, multiwindowing product for the PC; its successor was spelled DESQview, rather than DeskView. QEMM, and not QRAM, was Quarterdeck's first memory management product. In 1995, Quarterdeck purchased both Inset Systems and StarNine in 1995, rather than "Starnine Inset Systems." Our staff currently numbers 750 employees, rather than 250. The correct spelling of Quarterdeck's Chief Executive Officer's name is Gaston Bastiaens. Q. How can I get more information? A. Visit Quarterdeck's Web Site at http://www.quarterdeck.com/, or call (310) 309-3700, for more information on all of our products. Quarterdeck Corporation 13160 Mindanao Way Marina del Rey, CA 90292-9705 (310) 309-3700 QUARTERDECK ACQUIRES DATASTORM TECHNOLOGIES, DEVELOPER OF LEADING COMMUNICATIONS PACKAGE PROCOMM PLUS Combination of Technologies From Quarterdeck, DATASTORM And The Intended Acquisition of Future Labs Inc. Will Offer a Powerful Platform for Collaboration and Communications on the Internet and Intranet MARINA DEL REY, Calif., March 28, 1996 -- Quarterdeck Corp. today announced it has acquired DATASTORM TECHNOLOGIES Inc. in a stock-for-stock merger to be treated as a "pooling of interest" for accounting purposes. Quarterdeck will issue approximately 5.2 million shares in connection with the merger. The acquisition of DATASTORM is a significant step in Quarterdeck's collaborative computing and communications strategy. DATASTORM is the developer and publisher of Procomm Plus, the industry's leading data communications package. It recently shipped Procomm Plus 3.0 which runs on Windows 95 and 3.1, which includes an integrated FAX package, a Winsock-compliant TCP/IP stack, and a complete set of graphical applications for accessing the Internet, including a Web browser, telnet, FTP, and a news and mail reader. Privately-held DATASTORM will remain in its Columbia, Missouri headquarters. The company's revenues for calendar 1995 were about $39 million with a level of profit before taxes of approximately 20%. The acquisition of DATASTORM is expected to be accretive to Quarterdeck's earnings per share. In addition to the DATASTORM acquisition, Quarterdeck announced it signed a memorandum of understanding to acquire Future Labs Inc. Future Labs develops TALKShow, a whiteboarding and collaboration technology that allows two or more people to work together in the same application from remote locations. "The combination of DATASTORM's communication technology with our advanced Internet solutions will give us a unique position in the collaborative computing environment," said Gaston Bastiaens, President and CEO of Quarterdeck. "Adding Future Labs technology on top of this will push Quarterdeck to the forefront of collaborative computing and communications technologies." "Partnering with Quarterdeck will allow us to take our technologies to the next level quickly," said Tom Smith, Executive Vice President and co-founder of DATASTORM. "Plus, Quarterdeck's world-wide marketing and distribution muscle is among the most extensive in the industry, and this will enable us to make Procomm Plus available to a much larger potential audience, particularly in Europe and the Far East." "Quarterdeck and DATASTORM are two highly recognized and respected names in the software industry," said Bruce Barkelew, President and co-founder of DATASTORM. "By combining the brand name equity and technology of both companies, we will have an industry-leading marketing, technology, and mindshare combination now and into the future." Added Stephen Monaco, Vice President and co-owner of DATASTORM, "Quarterdeck's powerful retail marketing organization will provide an additional sales channel for Procomm into the SOHO and international markets. This will help preserve and even expand our lead as the top broad communications software developer in the industry." Tom Smith has been appointed Senior Vice President of the Communications business unit of Quarterdeck Corp., of which DATASTORM is an integral part. Mr. Monaco and Mr. Barkelew will stay on as consultants to Quarterdeck. About DATASTORM World headquarters are located in Columbia, Missouri, with a European office in Cambridge, England. DATASTORM TECHNOLOGIES INC. and DATASTORM TECHNOLOGIES, LTD. are privately-held corporations employing around 350 people internationally. DATASTORM markets their Procomm brand of communications software products world-wide. Procomm Plus and Procomm Plus for Windows consistently rank in the top ten best-selling software products. QUARTERDECK STRENGTHENS ITS PUSH INTO COLLABORATIVE COMPUTING TECHNOLOGY WITH AN AGREEMENT IN PRINCIPLE TO ACQUIRE FUTURE LABS, INC. Acquisition Will Provide Quarterdeck With Real-time Collaboration and Virtual Conferencing Technology for the Internet MARINA DEL REY, Calif., March 28, 1996 --- Quarterdeck Corp. (Nasdaq: QDEK) today announced it has reached an agreement in principle to acquire Future Labs, Inc. a developer of real-time collaborative technology that allows two or more people to work together on an application or document. The proposed transaction would offer Quarterdeck a springboard into the growing collaborative computing market and will greatly enhance the collaborative abilities of WebTalk, Quarterdeck's Web phone product that allows voice communication over the Internet, LAN, or WAN. The combined technology will give Quarterdeck the first full-featured, stand-alone, complete collaboration suite for the Internet. The transaction is subject to certain conditions, but is expected to close in April 1996. Future Labs develops TALKShow, a third-generation document conferencing product that allows two or more people in remote locations to work collaboratively in real time by sharing desktop applications or viewing live presentations remotely over a network. Future Labs has just launched Virtual Conference Center, a service on the Internet that integrates services combining their flagship TALKShow product and mature telcom applications, such as multiparty audio bridging, and additional Internet utilities that bring enhanced value to the virtual conferencing experience. "The addition of Future Labs technology and talent will be invaluable in giving Quarterdeck a boost in the collaborative computing market," said Gaston Bastiaens, President and CEO of Quarterdeck. "We are in the era of the home or virtual office, and remote technologies are a vital piece of working efficiently at a distance. TALKShow compliments what we have on the market and what we are developing, and is a major piece in providing corporate users with a complete, robust technology system for working together from a remote location." John Chua, President & CEO and co-founder of Future Labs, added "Our new position with Quarterdeck will provide us with all of the core business components for success along with the great technology of the combined companies. This combination brings immediate value to our recently announced Virtual Conference Center and its mission to provide an integrated service model to meet the needs of the remote business conferencing market." Quarterdeck will issue 750,000 shares to acquire Future Labs. The acquisition will be accounted for as a pooling of interests. The company and its 22 employees will remain in their Los Altos, Calif. office. Chua will remain at the helm of the company, in charge of the Future Labs activities. About Future Labs Future Labs, Inc., is a pioneer in the network-based collaboration software marketplace. The company's award-winning TALKShow document conferencing software is used for a range of applications, including training, education, and workgroup collaboration. Internet TALKShow is available for download from Future Labs' Web site, http://www.futurelabs.com. TALKShow and other Future Labs products are also available through OEMs and select resellers. The company is located at 5150-E21 El Camino Real, Los Altos, California, 94022 and can be reached at (415) 254-9000. QUARTERDECK RELEASES SPEEDYROM, A POWERFUL CD-ROM ACCELERATOR THAT CAN REDUCE CD ACCESS TIME Automatic 32-bit CD Turbocharger Reduces Time and Frustration Associated with Slow, Choppy CD Performance MARINA DEL REY, Calif., March 25, 1996 --- Quarterdeck Corp. (Nasdaq: QDEK) today announced the release of SpeedyROM, a 32-bit turbocharger that instantly increases the speed and performance of CD-ROMs. SpeedyROM is a CD-ROM turbocharger which incorporates a unique caching technology to intelligently determine the most frequently used information from CDs and speeds-up access and performance with each subsequent use. CD-ROM reference, gaming and multimedia enthusiasts will appreciate SpeedyROM's ability to smooth out graphics and audio in their favorite applications. Quarterdeck benchmarks show gains ranging from 11% to 92% for the second and subsequent passes on a CD-ROM with SpeedyROM active. With these gains, users will be able to enjoy faster performance from any CD-ROM drive. "This will be a big help for all CD-ROM users," said Alex Eckelberry, vice president and general manager of the utilities business unit at Quarterdeck. "Even with the recent improvements in CD performance, CD access time remains a weak spot in multimedia. SpeedyROM will allow users to speed-up any CD application for far better performance without having to purchase a new drive." SpeedyROM's "persistent caching technology" stores frequently-accessed CD ROM information directly to a user's hard drive. In addition, it utilizes a "lookback" or "history" cache that maintains performance-enhancing information on multiple CD-ROMs. SpeedyROM is the only product of this type to support compressed drives, including Stacker and DriveSpace. As the product is a true Windows 95 application, it will accept user changes without requiring a machine reboot and will also recognize a user's installation of a new CD drive automatically. "These unique features allows users to speed up any CD-ROM application without frustration and wasted time," said Elissa Murphy, senior product manager for general utilities. In addition to speeding up searches of commonly used reference information, including encyclopedias, directories, and clip-art files, SpeedyROM boosts responsiveness of interactive games and multimedia application, and can reduce the "choppiness" of CD-ROM based games. SpeedyROM installs in two minutes and supports Windows 95 applications as well as Windows 3.1 or DOS CD programs if run inside of Windows 95. SpeedyROM requirements include: IBM PC or 100% compatible; Windows 95; 386sx (486sx recommended); 4MB RAM (8MB recommended); 2 MB hard disk space (20 MB recommended); and a 32-bit CD ROM driver. SpeedyROM will be available in all of Quarterdeck's retail channels this week for an estimated street price of $39.95. About Quarterdeck Quarterdeck Corporation is a pioneer in the development of software products in four strategic business areas: Utilities, Internet Solutions, Internet Services, and Communications. The company has led the industry in bringing utilities solutions to the Windows and DOS environments with its award- winning QEMM memory management software. The company also offers an entire line of powerful, next-generation Internet tools for corporate, small business and individual users, including the award-winning WebCompass, and the company's first product in the Communications market, WebTalk. Quarterdeck Corporation's headquarters are located at 13160 Mindanao Way, Marina del Rey, CA 90292. The Dublin, Ireland office serves as its European headquarters, with offices in England, France, Germany, and Australia. Further product availability and pricing information can be obtained by calling (310) 309-3700, by accessing Quarterdeck's Internet Web site at http://www.quarterdeck.com/, or by sending an e-mail request to firstname.lastname@example.org. Quarterdeck and QEMM are registered trademarks and SpeedyROM, WebTalk, and WebCompass are trademarks of Quarterdeck Corporation. All other brand and product names are trademarks or registered trademarks of their respective companies. EDUPAGE STR Focus Keeping the users informed Edupage Contents Social Insecurity The Whole Engineer Word Macro Viruses Could Cost A Bundle Apple Sells Mac Plant, Turns To Outsourcing AT&T Likes Internet Phone Idea E-Mail From Outer Space More Routers = More Internet Brownouts Euro-Modem Universal Access Project Judge Gives Hacker Idle Time Microsoft, MCI, Digital Target Corporate Intranets Seek And Ye Shall Find An Investor Yahoo! Goes! Public! Spectrum Auction Hits $20 Billion Mark Businesses Poised To Spend More On Technology Government May Suffer Most From Year 2000 Problems Profs Face Problems "Marking Up" Electronic Texts Microsoft Says "Aha!" New TCI Venture Targets Education African Market Potential Kid-Proof Keyboard New Moves At AT&T IBM To License Mac O/S Bell Atlantic Is Latest Telecom Internet Provider Loose Change To Go On Plastic Card Time Warner, Compuserve Team Up Laptops Replacing Desktop Machines Netscape Teams Up With GE Information Services I-Tech Training Market To Double By 2000 AOL's Primed For Prime Time Digital Cellular Phone Use Up In Europe Education, Not Entertainment, Is The Key, Says Ellison SOCIAL INSECURITY Several employees of the Social Security Administration are accused of using access to the agency's computerized database to obtain private information on 11,000 individuals and pass the information (such as the person's mother maiden name) to a credit card fraud ring, which was able to activate cards it had stolen. (New York Times 6 Apr 96 p6) THE WHOLE ENGINEER A new book, "The Whole Engineer" by Samuel C. Florman, says Eastern European universities are doing a better job of integrating the humanities and social sciences into the engineering curriculum than universities in the U.S. "Programs at U.S. universities concentrate on blending engineering disciplines such as electrical engineering and computer science, or at most on combining engineering with other allied fields such as chemistry and manufacturing... The new European thrust, by contrast, is broader and more ambitious, reaching beyond the technical to emphasize the auspicious effect of humanistic studies on the engineer-citizen." (Technology Review Apr 96 p67) WORD MACRO VIRUSES COULD COST A BUNDLE The latest epidemic of Microsoft Word macro viruses could cost American businesses billions of dollars in lost productivity and maintenance this year, predict computer security experts. A National Computer Security Association survey of 300 large North American companies shows 50% suffered macro virus attacks in January and February. The Word viruses are especially contagious because they can be transmitted through applications such as e-mail. "The most striking thing is how fast they're spreading and how widespread the infestations are," says the president of the Computer Security Institute. NSCA estimates virus-caused losses to U.S. companies will total $5 billion to $6 billion, up from $1 billion last year. Half of the increase is attributable to the Word macro viruses. Microsoft says its Virus Protection Tool, available at < http://www.microsoft.com/ > offers protection from the virus. (Information Week 1 Apr 96 p22) APPLE SELLS MAC PLANT, TURNS TO OUTSOURCING Apple Computer is selling its Colorado plant, one of its two large manufacturing plants in the U.S., and will use the sale to help pay debt and reduce operating costs. The move is an indication that under new CEO Gil Amelio, Apple will place more emphasis on outsourcing. (New York Times 5 Apr 96 C3) AT&T LIKES INTERNET PHONE IDEA While small companies are banding together to combat voice transmissions via the Internet, telephone giant AT&T kind of likes the idea. "Obviously, we're in the telephone business, but we're also in the Internet business," says an AT&T spokesman. "We view telephone services on the Internet as a potentially large business, and we're looking into it." (Investor's Business Daily 8 Apr 96 A8) E-MAIL FROM OUTER SPACE Sky Station International has filed an application with the FCC to build a global wireless communications system using 250 geostationary stratospheric platforms to beam signals to and from personal communicator units, providing 64 kbps access to the Internet. Each Sky Station would be capable of handling 600,000 data transmissions simultaneously, at an estimated cost of about 10 cents a minute. "`Star Wars' was interesting," says an SSI principal. "We're doing the same thing, only for universal broadband." (Broadcasting & Cable 1 Apr 96 p54) MORE ROUTERS = MORE INTERNET BROWNOUTS As businesses and Internet operators keep adding routers to speed electronic content on its way, the proliferation of routing devices actually begins to slow traffic, causing Internet "brownouts" -- when the response time slows to a crawl. The solution could be an updated Internet, redesigned for fewer, more powerful routers, so that data packets need fewer hops. "The U.S. Internet is about as reliable these days as the phone system in Russia," says NetStar's VP for sales and marketing. (Business Week 8 Apr 96 p82) EURO-MODEM European laptop users will appreciate a new Global Link modem card with software that's designed to work with all the Western European phone companies, alleviating the problem of different standards and connections in each country. A EuroKit provides a handful of plugs that will fit almost any phone or wall jack. The products are made by Smart Modular Technologies in Fremont, Calif. (Investor's Business Daily 8 Apr 96 A8) UNIVERSAL ACCESS PROJECT "Connecting K-12 Schools To The Information Superhighway" and the report of the Kickstart Initiative, which is a project to help raise funds that will allow schools to get online, are available without charge from the National nformation Infrastructure Advisory Committee: 202-482-3999 or see < http://www.niaac-info.org/~niiac/ >. (Electronic Learning Mar/Apr 96 p8) JUDGE GIVES HACKER IDLE TIME After placing a 19-year-old computer hacker under house arrest while he faces computer fraud charges that could bring 30 years in prison, a St. Louis magistrate ordered that the man have no access to modems, computers, or computer parts, and not even talk about computers during his house arrest. The suspect, who is linked to the Internet Liberation Front, which is opposed to commercialism of the Internet, is charged with breaking into military and commercial computer systems, apparently without a profit motive. (New York Times 5 Apr 96 A16) MICROSOFT, MCI, DIGITAL TARGET CORPORATE INTRANETS Microsoft, MCI Communications and Digital Equipment Corp. have formed an alliance to offer businesses an integrated package of communications services and products, including high-speed Internet access, e-mail and groupware. The new agreement pits Microsoft, MCI and Digital directly against AT&T, IBM and Netscape, which have teamed up to offer similar Intranet services. "This stuff is hotter than hot," says an analyst at Forrester Research. "Over half of the Fortune 1000 companies will be up and running with Intranets by the end of the year." "These phone companies are rapidly expanding into areas that are way outside of their core areas. Anything and everything that address businesses' communications needs is in play," says an Atlanta-based telecommunications consultant. (Wall Street Journal 8 Apr 96 B6) SEEK AND YE SHALL FIND AN INVESTOR The Nynex Corporation, a Regional Bell telephone company, is buying 5% of Infoseek, which manages an Internet-based service designed to help people find Web sites of interest to them, and the Tribune Company, owner of newspapers, TV and radio stations, is buying 8% of Excite, which provides a similar search facility. (New York Times 9 Apr 96 C4) YAHOO! GOES! PUBLIC! Yahoo!, another well-regarded software company that manages a facility for searching the World Wide Web, is making a public stock offering this week. Analysts expect Yahoo! stock (ticker symbol YHOO, without the exclamation point) to open in the mid-$30s and to offer investors a wild ride of highs and lows in a short period of time. (Atlanta Journal-Constitution 9 Apr 96 B5) SPECTRUM AUCTION HITS $20 BILLION MARK Bidding in the FCC's spectrum auctions reached $20 billion last week, with C- block PCS (personal communications services) bidding alone accounting for almost half. "Auctions have proven once again to be a success not only by awarding licenses to those that value them the most, but also by decreasing the national debt," says FCC Chairman Reed Hundt. The A and B blocks of PCS spectrum came in second, raising $7.7 billion in revenue. (BNA Daily Report for Executives 8 Apr 96 A16) BUSINESSES POISED TO SPEND MORE ON TECHNOLOGY Businesses will spend 5.4% more on technology this year than they did in 1995, according to a poll of 346 executives conducted by Computer Sciences Corp. "We're spending more on software than on hardware," says an insurance company CIO. "Our story is very common, considering the costs of software updates." In addition to software upgrades, training and support for networks are claiming a large share of technology dollars, says a Forrester Research analyst. And putting the hardware in the hands of employees has actually created a "hidden IT cost," says the chairman of the International Center for Information Technologies. Every time a highly compensated worker stops what they're doing to fix a printer jam, they become an extremely costly computer technician. "While decentralized client-server computing was supposed to lower IT costs, the opposite has happened. Equipment costs are one-fifth of total costs... Firms are now spending on education and support." (Investor's Business Daily 9 Apr 96 A8) GOVERNMENT MAY SUFFER MOST FROM YEAR 2000 PROBLEMS The Gartner Group says too many corporations still have their heads in the sand over the problems that will arise when the date changes to 2000 and older computer software hasn't been modified to accommodate the new millennium. "People are becoming aware of the problem, and the degree of urgency we're seeing is escalating, but not fast enough to get us out of the woods," says Gartner's research director. "Fixing this is a lot of work. It's expensive, roll-up-your- sleeves work. Some systems won't be ready." He predicts government will have the biggest headaches: "The degree of denial we're seeing in government, plus budget constraints and the relative age of the systems and applications many governments use, add up to big, big trouble." (St. Petersburg Times 8 Apr 96 A1) PROFS FACE PROBLEMS "MARKING UP" ELECTRONIC TEXTS Professors who allow their students to submit classwork electronically are devising new ways to grade and edit papers. "The old standby editing marks just don't work," says one professor, who's devised a notation system using a series of parentheses and brackets for use in the electronic environment. Another professor just prints the homework out and marks it up with a pen, old-fashioned-style. Some professors see a plus in the ability to insert stock comments easily: "I suspect that most anyone who has graded lower- division papers sometimes wishes for a rubber stamp to address issues that arise over and over," says an assistant professor of philosophy at Oregon State University. E-mail "allows me to put in a lot of commentary without having to make redundant comments." But he still misses grading papers at the breakfast table. (Chronicle of Higher Education 12 Apr 96) MICROSOFT SAYS "AHA!" Microsoft is buying the Aha! Software Corporation, maker of pen-based programs for portable computers and Inkwriter software, which allows a users to write, edit, and transmit notes in their own handwriting. The acquisition is seen as a signal that Microsoft is committed to pen computing, especially as it can be applied to vertical market applications in which forms can be filled out by salespeople, inventory clerks, medical support staff, and other mobile workers. (New York Times 9 Apr 96 C2) NEW TCI VENTURE TARGETS EDUCATION Cable giant Tele-Communications Inc. has formed a new venture in partnership with Discovery Communications, the Northern Arizona University Foundation, The Lightspan Partnership, Compton's New Media, The Learning Co., InGenius and SoftKey to develop educational products that can be delivered through several different channels, including cable and DBS channels. ETC w/tci, as the partnership is called, will supply schools with a range of programs, including Spanish language series and Geonauts, a science program that explores the Grand Canyon. ETC plans to work with universities to provide college credit for teachers participating in ETC's staff development program. (T.H.E. Journal Apr 96 p24) AFRICAN MARKET POTENTIAL Saying that Africa "represents a significant opportunity," Electronic Arts, the largest producer of video game software, has bought Johannesburg-based software distributor Vision Software, which is building is building import operations in Kenya and four central African countries. (New York Times 9 Apr 96 C5) KID-PROOF KEYBOARD A husband-and-wife team has come up with a child-proof keyboard that's resistant to spilled juice, hard knocks and inadvertent wipeouts. It has 55 keys, color-coded for letters, numbers and other functions, and the letters are alphabetically arranged for easier hunting and pecking. Control, alt and delete keys are not included, preserving the CPU's integrity from accidental data losses or crashes. In addition, the keyboard can't be activated until the computer has finished booting up. "That way, even if they're banging on it, it's not going to hurt the files," says the designer. My First Keyboard is made by Kidtech and costs $49. (St. Petersburg Times 8 Apr 96 p13) NEW MOVES AT AT&T AT&T's Internet Toll-Free Directory now allows users to "hot-link" to the Web sites of AT&T's 800-line customers. So if a customer uses the online service to locate L.L. Bean's toll-free 800 number, he or she can either call the number or link to L.L. Bean's Web site to place their order there. < http://www.tollfree.att.net/ > (Investor's Business Daily 10 Apr 96 A8) Meanwhile, AT&T WorldNet will license Lycos Inc.'s Internet search tools, including the Lycos catalogue and the a2z directory. "AT&T's new service is designed to help people find their way into cyberspace, and it has chosen the Lycos products to hop guide customers toward the specific information they're looking for," says Lycos's CEO. (Investor's Business Daily 10 Apr 96 A9) And AT&T's Bell Labs has developed Watson ASAP, a speech-processing system that recognizes up to 100 customized commands and can read e-mail messages over the phone. The system, named after Alexander Graham Bell's assistant Thomas Watson, understands words spoken at conversational speed and an be adapted so that other electronic gadgets, such as VCRs, will respond to voice commands. (Wall Street Journal 10 Apr 96 B6) IBM TO LICENSE MAC O/S IBM and Apple are apparently close to an agreement in which IBM would license the Macintosh operating system so that it could offer Apple clone makers a one-stop shop for buying IBM Power PC chips and Mac O/S. (New York Times 10 Apr C2) BELL ATLANTIC IS LATEST TELECOM INTERNET PROVIDER Bell Atlantic plans to offer businesses and consumers Internet access and a full suite of Internet products, including Netscape's browser software and a one-button click to the Microsoft Network. Bell Atlantic Internet Solutions also will include local sports scores and local government information. "Our overall goal is to make the Internet as simple as using the telephone," says the president of the new division. (Wall Street Journal 11 Apr 96 B4) LOOSE CHANGE TO GO ON PLASTIC CARD Two major banks (Citibank and Chase Manhattan) and two major credit card companies (Visa and MasterCard) are joining forces for a field test in Manhattan of plastic "cash cards" intended to offer an alternative to coins and bills for purchases under $20. The cooperation of these rival corporations in this venture will help speed the deployment of compatible cards throughout the nation. (New York Times 10 Apr 96 C1) TIME WARNER, COMPUSERVE TEAM UP Time Warner and CompuServe have formed a partnership that will allow CompuServe subscribers exclusive access to a portion of TW's popular Pathfinder Web site, which contains news from People and Time magazines, as well as some original feature stories. The companies hope the arrangement will boost Time Warner's Pathfinder revenues while giving CompuServe subscribers more specialized content to choose from. (Wall Street Journal 11 Apr 96 B4) LAPTOPS REPLACING DESKTOP MACHINES The Giga Information Group in Cambridge, Mass. predicts that the number of workers using portable computers will expand from about one in five today to about one in three by 2000, and that 80% of portable users will use their portables as their primary machines, up from the current 30%. (Computerworld 8 Apr 96 p1) NETSCAPE TEAMS UP WITH GE INFORMATION SERVICES Netscape Communications and General Electric's Information Services unit have formed a joint venture called Actra Business Systems to market software solutions for conducting business-to-consumer transactions over the Internet. The Actra venture capitalizes on Netscape's encryption technology and ease of use and GE's leadership in electronic data interchange, or EDI. (Wall Street Journal 10 Apr 96 B6) I-TECH TRAINING MARKET TO DOUBLE BY 2000 The global market for information technology training and education is rising by 13% a year, and will reach $27 billion by the end of the decade, according to International Data Corp. Spending totaled $14.4 billion last year. Leading the trend is corporate America's need to provide continuous training, professional development and employee skill certification. Top training organizations last year were IBM Education & Training, Oracle Education, Knowledge Pool (a joint venture of ICL PLC, Amdahl Corp. and Fujitsu Ltd.), SAP Customer Education, and Global Knowledge Network (formerly Digital Learning Services). (Investor's Business Daily 11 Apr 95 A8) AOL'S PRIMED FOR PRIME TIME America Online CEO Steve Case has beaten the odds on whether the new surge in Internet popularity will undermine the market for commercial online services. AOL now generates 30% of all Web traffic, according to Find/SVP, and its Global Network Navigator Internet-only service has signed up 100,000 subscribers since last fall. "If you look at how this young fella has positioned this company, he has ventures with every big player in the business. Instead of being beaten to death by Microsoft, as everyone predicted, they came courting him," says one longtime AOL director. Meanwhile the head of AOL's Greenhouse program, Ted Leonsis, sees prime time sitcoms as his next big challenge. While on a good Thursday night, about 400,000 subscribers are signing onto AOL, 20 million people are watching "Seinfeld." "We are pathetic compared to that," says Leonsis. "But we have to get there. We have to be prime time." (Business Week 15 Apr 96 p78) DIGITAL CELLULAR PHONE USE UP IN EUROPE A Dataquest report says that 1995 saw a 60% increase in digital cellular phone use in Europe, with 22.6 million cellular phone subscribers at the end of the year, for a penetration rate of 6% of the population. (Financial Times 9 Apr 96 p19) EDUCATION, NOT ENTERTAINMENT, IS THE KEY, SAYS ELLISON Oracle founder Larry Ellison thinks movies-on-demand will never make it as the prime motivator for online video services: "Movies-on-demand are such a lousy application of network computing. What's really important are training videos. We spend 10 times as much money on education as on movies in this country." (Forbes ASAP 8 Apr 96 p54) Kids Computing Corner Frank Sereno, Editor The Kids' Computing Corner Computer news and software reviews from a parent's point of view In the News Microsoft Sponsors Children's Contest 2nd Annual "Imagine the Magic" Competition Time is running out for entries in the "Imagine the Magic" contest. Co- sponsored by The Cartoon Network and Sports Illustrated for Kids, the contest asks children from six to eleven to imagine "what the coolest computer could do." Children can cut, paste, write or draw their entry. Written entries are limited to fifty words. Last year's contest drew 18,000 entries! This year's prizes include six grand prizes of all-expenses paid trips to Microsoft's headquarters in Redmond, Washington for an exclusive meeting with Bill Gates. The grand prize winners will also receive Gateway 2000 Destination Multimedia Systems, complete Microsoft software libraries, a limited-edition animation cel from the Cartoon Network's "Dexter's Laboratory" cartoon series and an appearance on "Toon World News." They will also appear on a special page in the September issue of Sports Illustrated for Kids. Their schools will receive the Microsoft learning library and a Gateway 2000 Destination Multimedia System also. Fifty semi-finalists and their schools will receive Microsoft software and all entrants will receive an official Microsoft "Imagination Navigation" certificate signed by Bill Gates. More detailed information on contest information and entry forms can be found on the web at http://www.microsoft.com/kids. Entries must be received by May 15, 1996 and winners will be announced by June 7. This is not a random drawing. Entries can be filed at the web site or can be mailed to "Imagine the Magic" Contest, P.O. Box 39105, Chicago, IL 60639. Winners will be selected based on imagination and creativity. So fire up those bright minds to win this fantastic contest! N-TK to Release Four Storybook Classics N-TK will release four classic fables on CD-ROM for IBM compatible in May 1996. The titles will be available as part of its Classic Line of Memorexr software with a retail price of 14.99 each. The Sleeping Beauty, Aladdin and His Wonderful Lamp, Beauty and the Beast and Gulliver's Voyage to Lilliput feature 3-D animation, musical scores and illustrations in typical nineteenth century style. Sleeping Beauty and Aladdin feature a movie option that displays the stories without interruption. Sleeping Beauty also includes a jigsaw puzzle game featuring scenes from the story. These titles provide an excellent opportunity to replace television and movies with interactive software. Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea Jason Project Is World's First Undersea Web Site Kids, young and old alike, can get "into" science in a high-tech, interactive learning adventure. Web surfers can participate in experiments and chat with scientists at the JASON Project homepage at http://seawifs.gsfc.nasa.gov/JASON.html. The available activities include cruising on a nuclear submarine, chasing sharks, exploring a shipwreck. All this is possible via cutting edge audio/video streaming cybercasts that are beamed live via satellite. Visitors can also enter real-time chats with scientists living the underwater laboratory. The site also has interactive investigation section in which participating schools post data gathered in local projects. The main goal of the JASON Project is to promote scientific interest and understanding while fostering global friendships. The site is highly rated for its educational content by I-way Magazine and Parent Soup. Microsoft Introduces Bookshelf 1996-97 Edition Microsoft has enhanced its Bookshelf offering with new features that make it easier to use and more helpful than previous editions. This legendary reference work is available now for Windows priced at about $55. The newest and hottest addition to Bookshelf is the handy Internet Directory 96. This guide to nearly 5000 useful and interesting sites includes information and overviews of the World Wide Web, Gopher and FTP sites, mailing lists, Usenet newsgroups as well as a glossary of common Internet terms. The Internet Directory 96 can be used in conjunction with the included Microsoft Internet Explorer version 2.0 to instantly access any site listed. Free monthly updates will be available online. Bookshelf also features the Concise Encarta 96 Atlas. This work is derived from Encarta 96 World Atlas and includes maps and info about the world. The maps and text can be copied and pasted into documents. For more information on Microsoft Bookshelf, visit Microsoft's web site at http://www.microsoft.com/bookshelf. Ready to Learn 3 in 1 Activity Pack Windows CD-ROM for ages 4 to 8 MSRP $69.95 Edmark Corporation P.O. Box 97021 Redmond, WA 98073-9721 1-800-320-8379 Program Requirements IBM Macintosh OS: Windows 3.1, Windows 95 OS: System 7.0.1 CPU: 486/33 CPU: Color Macintosh HD Space: 6 MB HD Space: ? MB Memory: 8 MB Memory: 8 MB Graphics: 640 by 480 with 256 colors Graphics: 256 colors, 13" monitor CD-ROM: Double-speed recommended CD-ROM: Double-speed recommended Audio: 8-bit Windows compatible sound card Other: mouse; printer, microphone optional Other: printer, microphone optional reviewed by David H. Mann The people at Edmark have come up with an excellent product for people with kids 4 to 8 years old. It's called Ready to Learn 3 in 1 Activity Pack. It is a combination of a desktop interface and two multi-activity programs. The individual retail prices for the titles in this package would total over $120. The first is called Kid Desk (the Family Edition). Kid Desk is a PDA (Personal Data Assistant) for kids, and data security system for adults. It provides a desktop (that looks like a desk), notepad, phonebook, rolodex, event calendar, talking clock, calculator, voice mail, e-mail, name plate, working lamp, and program launcher. Your child can select from several desktops. Every family member can have his own personal desktop. E-mail and voice mail can be sent to all users (or family members) on the system. Parents can control the programs and setup for each user of the system. The desktop can even be started on bootup, protecting the system from any foul ups that seem to happen when kids are on the computer. The system can be password protected (internally and externally) to keep precious data from being spied on or corrupted by other users. All in all, the program gives kids, and novice adults, the ability to get the feel of what the real computing world is all about without destroying the system. Trudy's Time and Place House is a collection of five activities that show the relationship between time and space. In Earth Scout, kids can fly around the globe, take pictures of famous landmarks in other countries (print and color them if they wish), and correlate the areas of a flat map and a globe. In Time Twins, kids can learn to tell time on digital and analog clocks on the quarter, half, and whole hour. In Calendar Clock, they learn about units of time as they move (forward or backward) in an animated cartoon movie by months, days, hours, minutes, and seconds. In the Jellybean Hunt they guide a cartoon ant (left, right, and forward) to jellybeans, while seeing the relationship between north, south, east, and west on a map. And in Symbol Sandbox, kids can see the hills, roads, lakes, and cities grow from map symbols that they place in a sandbox. Trudy and other characters encourage kids along the way of each activity with music and speech. The program is also Kid Desk aware, meaning it loads itself upon installation. Thinking Things Collection One, is six exercises (in sound, shape, motion, music, and memory), that help promote logical thinking, basic musical sequencing, and spatial discrimination. The first Oranga Banga, is an orangutan that plays several percussion instruments. A child plays a sequence (that Oranga repeats), or repeats one that Oranga has played. The activity has a sliding intelligence scale, that increases or decreases the number of the sequence, to thwart discouragement in the exercise. Blox- Flying Shapes, is a collection of flying geometric shapes. Each shape can fly either uniformly or in different directions. The shapes have distinct designated sounds that you hear when the shape comes in contact with the sides of the screen. The child controls the direction, size, and sounds. Children learn spatial relationships during the activity, and can even save the work they do (as a file) for later viewing or showing to friends or family. In Fripple Shop, kids use AND, OR, and NOT (Boolean logic) to pick out cute little Fripples that customers order by phone, fax, or at the door of the shop. They must find the correct Fripple from the size of eyes, stripes, color, texture of hair, etc.. The complexity of the Fripple ordered is controlled by the adult with the intelligence scale. Feathered Friends, is an activity in which a kid can build, color, and dress a bird either by instruction, or by themselves. In Blox-Flying Spheres, kids can experiment with music, the illusion of depth, and motion. Selected music and 3-D backgrounds can be used as colored spheres controlled by the child appear to bounce off illusional walls inside the screen. The direction can be uniform or multi-directional and can be saved for later viewing. And in Toony Loon, a stork helps increase memory and music skills as a child repeats or creates sequences of notes on one of several xylophones. This activity is also controlled by the intelligence scale. The Ready to Learn 3 in 1 Activity Pack offers a great starter package for any parent with preschool or grade school kids. This package will help their kids to become computer literate and learn some neat things about the world around them. The secure desktop (with a built in screen saver) and the ability to control the environment your child works in, adds value to a set of already great programs. The documentation is easy to understand and offers suggestions on parent and child follow-up activities to each program. I think Edmark has a winner in the packaging and setup of these programs. And with twenty five years of experience in education, how can a parent go wrong? The Playroom Dual-format CD-ROM for Windows and Macintosh approximate retail $30 for ages 3 to 6 Broderbund Software 500 Redwood Blvd. Novato, CA 94948-6121 415-382-4400 Program Requirements IBM Macintosh OS: Windows 3.1, Windows 95 OS: System 7.0.1 CPU: 386DX/25MHz CPU: 68030/20 HD Space: 1 MB HD Space: N/A Memory: 4 MB Memory: 5 MB Graphics: 640 by 480 with 256 colors Graphics: 256 colors, 13" monitor CD-ROM: Double-speed recommended CD-ROM: Double-speed recommended Audio: 8-bit Windows compatible sound card Other: mouse, printer optional Other: printer optional reviewed by Frank Sereno The Playroom was first introduced to children in 1989. The program won many awards for its user-friendly interface, engaging characters and fine educational content. Pepper and Ginger, the friendly mice hosts, are back with a new, enhanced multimedia version of The Playroom that is sure to delight, educate and fascinate young children. To get started, your child chooses either Pepper or Ginger to be his host and then he enters the playroom. He can begin activities by clicking on objects within the room. Some objects merely serve as hotspots for funny animated sequences while others are linked to the learning games. The interface is somewhat deficient because it doesn't have audible help. Most programs offer spoken help by clicking on the main character or a help icon. In The Playroom, help is available only as text files accessed by clicking on the menu bar. The activities are simple and fun to play with fantastic educational opportunities. Your child can develop counting and logic skills by visiting the Mousehole and playing the three-level counting game. He can learn about time by playing the Clock. The Computer game teaches letter names and phonics as he presses keys on the keyboard. Your child can also learn spelling by completing words. The ABC Book game also teaches letter names and sounds as he picks letters with the mouse or keyboard. In this game, he can add images that begin with the chosen letters to a house scene. The Spinner Toy teaches counting and number recognition. Children will learn logic and matching The Mixed-Up Toy game as they complete toys by matching the body parts to create the desired toy. Several activities have both free and interactive modes. In the free mode, your child is free to explore the game as he wishes. By clicking on the game's host, he enters the interactive mode in which the host will prompt him to solve a problem. Your child can switch modes at any time. Printing is permitted in the Mixed-Up Toy and ABC Book games. The program will print line art reproductions of the image on the screen that your child can color. These features will prolong his interest in the activities. The Playroom features a superior user manual. It includes all necessary information on installing and operating the program plus it includes a wonderful parent's section. This section describes the educational content of the program and recommends numerous activities to do on and away from the computer. It also includes reproducible pages of finger puppets and coloring pages. The graphics are appealing and interesting. The animations are very smooth and detailed. The program features five original songs which will set children's toes to tapping. The voice characterizations are very pleasing and entertaining. Broderbund made tremendous strides in these areas in the improved The Playroom. The interface is very solid with the exception of the lack of audible help. Play value is superb because the games have great variety and are very entertaining. Educational content is quite high. The Playroom is an excellent value. It is modestly priced and it is backed by an industry- leading ninety-day moneyback guarantee. If you are looking for a first program for your young one, this risk-free offering from Broderbund is an excellent choice. Ratings Graphics . . . . . . . . . 9.5 Sound . . . . . . . . . . . 9.5 Interface . . . . . . . . . 8.0 Play Value . . . . . . . . 8.5 Educational Value . . . 9.0 Bang for the Buck . . . 9.5 Average . . . . . . . . . . 9.0 Portable Computers Section Marty Mankins, Editor Microsoft cooking up tasty technology tidbits in Explorer By Peggy Watt Network World April 8, 1996 Redmond, Wash. Although Microsoft Corp. is busily beta-testing its Internet Explorer 3.0 browser, the release after that is the one that adds a new spin with features such as local data directories that look like Web pages and a personal Web server. Internet Explorer 3.0 is scheduled to ship for Windows 95 by July and for other platforms by year-end. But more significant new features will first arrive in the Internet add-on known as Nashville, and will then be implemented in later commercial versions of Explorer for Windows 95 and Windows NT late this year. For example, Microsoft has promised that the Nashville add-on will provide a Site Map that displays a hierarchical chart of both file and network directories as well as icons designating Web pages. The configuration is similar to the Windows 95 Explorer screen, which replaced the Windows 3.1 File Manager. But Nashville and versions of Internet Explorer after 3.0 will also offer the reverse. Users will be able to navigate and view local files and directories with an interface that resembles a Web browser and uses common browser commands, said Mike Ahern, Explorer product manager. That configuration will let users move among windows and even applications using VCR-style forward and back buttons, a feature key to browsing Web pages. The local and intranet directories themselves will be presented through an HTML template that resembles a typical Web page, with variable- size text and icons. For example, subdirectories are represented as large icons, and the hard disk directory name appears in large, HTML headline-style text. Nashville, to be sold commercially, is essentially a superset of Explorer and provides features beyond those in the basic browser, which is distributed free of charge, Ahern said. 'It will add the combination of [local, network and Web file menus and a news reader,' he said. 'The network manager can use HTML templates and customize or change them to set up the user's interface to local files.' Net managers can also tie the view to a user's access privileges so it displays only files to which a user has access. Users can share the templates on an intranet or peer-to-peer LAN. The primary additions to Explorer 3.0 are support for ActiveX multimedia controls and support for frames. Frames divide a Web page view into several segments that can change based on a user's inquiry or input, so a Web page may appear differently to each user. Netscape Communications Corp. implemented frames in Navigator 2.0, but Microsoft wanted to go one better by handling floating frames and frames of any shape, not just rectangles. Meanwhile, Explorer's support for ActiveX client controls, which are Web- enabled OLE extensions, serves some of the same functions as Navigator's plug-ins. Ahern said a key difference is that users can write scripts using tools such as VB Script to drive the controls, while plug-ins are usually not modifiable by users. The hottest new browser features will appear first in Explorer for Windows 95. Updates for Windows NT, Windows 3.1 and Apple Computer, Inc.'s Mac OS are expected to lag about six months behind the Windows 95 version. For instance, beta-testing of Explorer 3.0 for those platforms is expected to begin this summer. Atari Interactive - software/Jaguar/Computer Section Dana Jacobson, Editor >From the Atari Editor's Desk "Saying it like it is!" I've been looking over some of our past issues for this time of year. Ironically, I came up with the issue from two years ago, this very same week. In it, I found that the sentiments that I wrote in my editorial are still valid today. And what others me the most is that most of my views at that time have come to pass. Instead of my usual original witty and thought provoking opinions this week, I thought I'd re-print that editorial from STReport Issue #1015, April of 1993. "Spring is here. The not-so-obvious signs are there: Atari users are coming out of their long winter hibernation and starting to realize that things aren't as rosy as they'd like. Let me take a philosophical outlook on this for a minute or two. These "thoughts" are my own and may or may not agree with others on the staff here, but I feel that there's a need to express them. Most Atari users, past, present, and future are users of Atari computers. That's the impression one gets when talking about "Atari users" in general. For all intents and purposes, Atari as a viable computer company is dead. I didn't say that Atari is dead, just the computer side of it. They aren't actively moving ahead with new projects. If they are, it's very low-key and minimal. All of their resources are being directed to the Jaguar. The Jaguar, as most will agree, is Atari's last hurrah. If it doesn't succeed, they may be faced with the same predicament that Commodore is nearing. Has Atari made the right decision here? That's depends on who you ask, obviously. Atari does not have the resources to produce and market computers and Jaguars. Game consoles, such as the Jaguar, are always going to be major hits if the hardware warrants it; the Jaguar does. Computers, at least non-PC ones, aren't selling as well as the parent companies would like. If you were Atari, which option would you take? I know, I don't necessarily like that choice and the obvious answer either. I've been an "Atari" consumer since the days of the 2600. That product satisfaction led me to buy the ST. That same satisfaction subsequently led me to purchase the Lynx and now the Jaguar; it was a natural progression. I want to be able to use that same "logic" on future computer purchases as well, but there are too many factors prohibiting that from happening, for me. This isn't something new, but it is something that _many_ Atari users are finally realizing, and admitting. There is an extremely limited number of available dealers. I'm not referring to the occasional music store, touted as an official Atari dealer, who sells a minimal amount of Falcons and MIDI software. I'm talking full Atari dealers with various hardware, software, peripherals, and some service. You could probably count them all on both hands, perhaps adding a toe or two. 2-3 years ago, new software was not arriving in truckloads; today it's even worse. Many of the developers are still around, but not active in the Atari market as they once were. Sure, much of our favorite software has seen a number of updates for which we're all very grateful, but new software from them is rare. Take a look at a current list of IAAD members and name any new products in the last 6 months from them. There are some, but not that many overall. Where are the new users? The old? Every week I see another message from a long-standing user who has finally given up the ghost. At best, he/she keeps the computer but also buys a Mac or a PC and spends the majority of their time with it rather than the Atari machine. They keep it around because it's hard to get rid of it, both financially and emotionally - it was a good friend. And, in the back of their mind, is some faint glimmer of hope that things might turn around. What bothers me the most about this current dilemma is how it's affecting the userbase, in a number of ways. The diehards (and I occasionally see myself in this category) are hoping that the success of the Jaguar will enable Atari to fulfill their "promise" that they will pick up where they wanted to leave off with new computer developments. Reality tells me that Atari will have to surpass the hold that the likes of Nintendo and Sega have on today's game console market. The profits will have to be so great that they can afford to take another chance with the computer industry and achieve and hold on to a toe-hold, perhaps achieve a marginal success to maintain that support. If they don't have the means to do this successfully, they're not likely to waste their time and money to do so. It's a business decision that makes sense, much to the chagrin of us all. Will the Jaguar be successful? It has all of the capabilities to be so. History Lesson #42: So did all of their past products and look where they are today. Atari has to do it right this time if they are ever going to survive. The Jaguar is going to have to provide very early successes before the competition comes along with an equal or better product. Atari has had a quick start, and a few stalls in the almost 6 months that it's been available. It appears that Atari is back on track again, and moving ahead fairly well. Let's hope that it continues, and improved a thousand-fold! The other thing that's bothering me in this regard is the current attitudes that I'm seeing online. I see current users and those sitting on the fence (or recently jumped off) at odds with each other. It's similar to what we're all used to seeing in the form of platform bashing, but amongst Atari users. There are those, as I mentioned earlier, who are the diehards who will never admit (publicly) that anything is wrong with Atari; that they're on track and things will get better in the near future. There are those who have continued to stay with the Atari platform, but realize that things aren't likely to improve anytime soon. But, the fact that they feel comfortable and moderately satisfied with what their machines can do, they're still sticking to their systems. And then there are those who have finally said, for whatever reason, that's it, I'm going to buy a Mac or PC so I can have all the software that I could ever want. Seeing all of these people, probably all "friendly" with one another at some point in the recent past, at odds with each other is a strange feeling. There has always been a controversy or another to liven things up, but that's not what I'm referring to here. It's the comments from a recently-departed user who tells someone that he's a fool for sticking with Atari computers. It's another who tells someone that he should show his support of Atari by buying a Falcon or a Jaguar. It's another..... I think you get my point. I think a lot of boils down to sheer frustration at not being part of the majority. Peer pressure, perhaps? It's hard to pinpoint, actually. Atari users are close to being unique - we're a loyal bunch, somewhat fanatical, but loyal nonetheless. I think it's going a bit overboard to blindly maintain loyalty to the company; we've already made that singular major purchase with our machine of choice. As long as there are developers bringing out new products, albeit in dribs and drabs, there's a reason to maintain what we have as long as we can still do what it is we want to do with them. Why buy a PC just for the ability to have more software choices if we already own software that will do it on an Atari machine? Granted, if you need to be able to do something and that capability _isn't_ there, you'd be making a right decision to go elsewhere. Should someone begrudge you for that? Of course not. On the other side of the coin, don't begrudge me for staying with the Atari platform when it aptly performs the functions that I require of it. Atari, the company, isn't going to change that whether it's still around, or not." Until next time..... New Atari Mag STR Spotlight Classic Atari OnLine Magazine This magazine is set up to help everybody in the Atari world, novice to expert. Classic Atari OnLine publishes every two months and is available it: http://ourworld.compuserve.com/homepages/dschmud/dsatari.htm Atari Gaming and Atari Computing CompuServe libraries under the news section. Several BBSes around the United States. Contact me for more information at: email@example.com Classic Atari OnLine - your NEW Atari source This issue: EDITORIAL What Classic Atari OnLine is about REVIEWS HARDWARE Spider-Man (2600) Novice Section (Chaining drives) Secret Quest (2600) HELP!! Spy Hunter (8-bit computers) The 815 drive (PICTURE) Atari Writer (8-bit computers) TIPS/TRICKS (They work!) DISGRACE TO PLASTIC One on One (7800) Tax Avoiders Atari History ("He Created a Company Called Atari and It Was Good.") Current News (Interview with Don Thomas) Voting (What's your most wanted vaporware?) And a wee bit more!! 04-96 (2nd Week) CN Continues STR Spotlight CURRENT NOTES MAGAZINE CURRENT NOTES is out! The MAR/APR issue is jam-packed with news, information, reviews and support; everything you need to help get the best from TOS/GEM computing, Geneva, and MagiC, MagiCMac! IN THIS ISSUE: - Reviews: Keyboard Gizmo, Electronic Spinster Graphics CD, Pixart, Parafin, Backwards, and a whole lot more* - Our series on Personal Info Managers continues with CardFile* - alt.info.everything* - 8-Bit updates. Important new information* - Color DTP processing techniques* - Troubleshooting MIDI (and everything else!)* - Our new series on MinT and MultiTOS/AES 4 begins* - Small Office/Home Office. Work smart* - Creeping consumerism* - Atari Corp/JTS merger* - Web sites, CDs, Wave Cable telecommunications, new products* Look for CURRENT NOTES at your favorite dealer or send us your subscription! It's easy to subscribe: - U.S 1 year/$25us 2 years/$46us - Canada 1 year/$35cdn 2 years/$65cdn - Foreign 1 year/$48us 2 years/$90us Canadian and U.S. subscribers may pay by check, bank draft or M.O. Foreign subscribers should pay via bank draft or M.O. Make all payments to 'Current Notes'. Send subscriptions to: Current Notes Magazine 559 Birchmount Rd. #2 Scarborough, ON Canada M1K 1P8 Please allow 4-6 weeks for processing. DON'T FORGET ABOUT OUR NEW SUBSCRIBERS DRAW! Everyone who sends in a valid subscription postmarked on or before June 1st 1996, will be eligible for our super prize draw. The prize package contains CDs, Calamus SL, tbxCAD, First Graph, SARA Groliers driver, SARA 5-Pack drivers, Invision Elite 2, Outline Art 3, and whatever else we can dig up! Hundreds of dollars in value! Send in your subscription today!! CURRENT NOTES magazine is in its 16th great year! Don't miss out on the best. Subscribe now! Contact us via e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org" Jaguar Section Hmmmmm...... >From the Editor's Controller - Playin' it like it is! I got about 5 minutes of playing time in the past 7-8 days and not a second more! My wife is addicted to Battlemorph and she won't let me near the controller. It's a good thing that STReport staff member Tom Sherwin did a review of the game because it doesn't look like I'm going to be able to complete my assigned review of the game. Maybe I can sneak in a round of Baldies or something and get a review out.
Atari's Don Thomas informed me that the recent "Atari Warehouse Special Offer" sale went extremely well this past week. They are still busy filling orders, with many more to go. I have to sit down and go over which Lynx games I still want to add to my collection and see if I can still buy them. Maybe a couple of those old Warner Atari 3-ring bindersas collector's items, as well! While talking to Don, I asked him if he had found any other "gems" while going through the warehouse. "As a matter of fact...," he mentioned, he had. He also stated that I could relate this to you, and mention a special and exclusive STReport offer! Everyone remembers Pac -Man and Ms Pac-Man from the arcades, computer, 2600, etc. C'mon, admit it, you were a big fan! I know that I was. Well, many moons ago (and probably even a few more!), Atari had some promotional PaccMan outfits put together. Don found them. Two of the outfits are Pac-Man, or Ms Pac-Man (or one of each!) he doesn't recall. The other two are Ghosts (you know, those monsters chasing Pac-Man all over the board). They're life-size. No, not Pac-Man size, but LIFE SIZE! He's going to sell them. These are probably one-of-a-kind items and arecustom-made (obviously). These are an Atari game collector's dream, from what I have heard described to me. Don has told me that he will sell EACH outfit for $100. The caveat is that the shipping for each one is also approximately another $100 (these things are huge, and heavy, shipping-wise). I repeat, each outfit is $100 and the shipping & handling for each is another $100 or so. Don only has four of these outfits available. If interested, contact Don via ecmail at: email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org Subject line: Pac-Man outfits offer This offer is on a first-come, first-serve basis - subject to the normal sales approval policies at Atari. On to other things.... There's very little new items of interest to relate this week. I do know that Fight For Life will be appearing next Friday (April 19) and that is likely the only game to be released this month. I understand that Iron Soldier II is going through final test and should be appearing in May or early June. Breakout 2000 is also another likely candidate for May or June. There's been no official word on other games or release dates. In fact, there still hasn't been a revised list of pending games - at least anything official. Still, Atari is reviewing all potential titles and considering what will or will not be released. It's frustrating for those wanting to know, and will likely be that way in the coming months. While viewing the Atari newsgroups, I came across an announcement from Sega that you should find interesting. I haven't been able to confirm this item as of this writing. It appears that former Atari North American president Ted Hoff has found a new home with Sega. Details of Hoff's new job are elsewhere in this issue. Well, while we watch the latest snow from two more nor'easters melt away (almost another 8-9 inches in the Boston area!), I'm going to try and pry the Jaguar controller out of my wife's hands. Maybe it's time to purchase a second JaguarCD so I can hook it up to my second Jaguar and leave my wife to her Battlemorphing while I play something else! Wish me luck! Until next time... Jaguar Catalog STR InfoFile What's currently available, what's coming out. Current Available Titles CAT # TITLE MSRP DEVELOPER/PUBLISHER J9000 Cybermorph $59.99 Atari Corp. J9006 Evolution:Dino Dudes $19.87 Atari Corp. J9005 Raiden $19.87 FABTEK, Inc/Atari Corp. J9001 Trevor McFur/Crescent Galaxy $19.87 Atari Corp. J9010 Tempest 2000 $32.87 Llamasoft/Atari Corp. J9028 Wolfenstein 3D $26.87 id/Atari Corp. JA100 Brutal Sports FootBall $39.99 Telegames J9008 Alien vs. Predator $42.87 Rebellion/Atari Corp. J9029 Doom $42.87 id/Atari Corp. J9036 Dragon: Bruce Lee $19.87 Atari Corp. J9003 Club Drive $19.87 Atari Corp. J9007 Checkered Flag $19.87 Atari Corp. J9012 Kasumi Ninja $19.87 Atari Corp. J9042 Zool 2 $19.87 Atari Corp J9020 Bubsy $19.87 Atari Corp J9026 Iron Soldier $19.87 Atari Corp J9060 Val D'Isere Skiing $26.87 Atari Corp. Cannon Fodder $29.95 Virgin/C-West Syndicate $44.99 Ocean Troy Aikman Football $64.99 Williams Theme Park $44.99 Ocean Sensible Soccer Telegames Double Dragon V $54.99 Williams J9009E Hover Strike $30.72 Atari Corp. J0144E Pinball Fantasies $42.50 C-West J9052E Super Burnout $42.87 Atari Corp. J9070 White Men Can't Jump $32.87 Atari Corp. Flashback $54.99 U.S. Gold J9078E VidGrid (CD) Atari Corp J9016E Blue Lightning (CD) $59.99 Atari Corp J9040 Flip-Out $32.87 Atari Corp J9082 Ultra Vortek $42.87 Atari Corp C3669T Rayman $59.99 Ubi Soft Power Drive Rally $59.99 TWI J9101 Pitfall $42.87 Atari Corp. J9086E Hover Strike CD $49.99 Atari Corp. J9031E Highlander I (CD) $49.99 Atari Corp. J9061E Ruiner Pinball $42.87 Atari Corp. Dragon's Lair $49.99 Readysoft J9097E Missile Command 3D $49.00 Atari Corp. J9091E Atari Karts $49.99 Atari Corp. J9044E Supercross 3D $49.99 Atari Corp. J9106E Fever Pitch Soccer $49.99 Atari Corp. J9043E I-War $49.99 Atari Corp. J9069 Myst (CD) $49.99 Atari Corp. Primal Rage $59.99 Time Warner Battlemorph $49.99 Atari Corp. J9055 Baldies $49.99 Atari Corp. J9089 NBA Jam TE $57.99 Atari Corp. Zoop $42.99 Atari Corp. Space Ace $52.99 Readysoft Defender 2000 $59.99 Atari Corp. ...Mutant Penguins $49.99 Atari Corp. Braindead 13 $52.99 Readysoft Available Soon CAT # TITLE MSRP DEVELOPER/PUBLISHER Fight For Life $59.99 Atari Corp. World Tour Racing TBA Atari Corp Breakout 2000 $42.50 Atari Corp. Max Force $59.99 Atari Corp. J9021 Brett Hull Hockey $59.99 Atari Corp. Hardware and Peripherals CAT # TITLE MSRP MANUFACTURER J8001 Jaguar (no cart) $99.99 Atari Corp. J8904 Composite Cable $19.95 J8901 Controller/Joypad $24.95 Atari Corp. J8905 S-Video Cable $19.95 CatBox $69.95 ICD J8800 Jaguar CD-ROM $149.99 Atari Corp. J8908 JagLink Interface $26.76 Atari Corp. J8910 Team Tap 4-Player Adapter) $26.76 Atari Corp. J8907 Jaguar ProController $27.87 Atari Corp. J8911 Memory Track $26.76 Atari Corp. J8909 Tempest 2000: The Soundtrack $12.99 Atari Corp. Industry News STR Game Console NewsFile - The Latest Gaming News! Unconfirmed, from the Internet: Ted Hoff Joins Sega CONTACT: Dan Stevens, Sega of America, Redwood City, CA 415/802-3996 REDWOOD CITY, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)-- April 10, 1996--Sega of America Wednesday announced that Theodore "Ted" Hoff has joined the company as senior vice president, sales and marketing services. Hoff is responsible for the overall retail marketing and sales performance of Sega's hardware and software products. Sales, trade marketing, creative services, media and communications functions report to Hoff. Hoff joins Sega with more than seven years experience as a senior executive in the interactive entertainment industry and almost 20 years experience in technology and consumer goods. In welcoming Hoff to Sega, President and Chief Executive Officer Tom Kalinske stated, "Ted's strong background coupled with his management style and personality will be a valuable asset to Sega as we lead the industry in the changing realm of interactive entertainment." Most recently Hoff served as president, Atari North America. Prior to Atari, Hoff launched Fox Interactive, the interactive division of Twentieth Century Fox, as senior vice president and general manager. Previously, Hoff served more than four years as senior vice president, marketing and sales, at Time Warner Interactive. Before entering the interactive entertainment field, Hoff served as strategic management counsel to many high-technology companies, as vice president and partner of Korn-Ferry International. He also held senior executive and general management positions with three Fortune 100 companies. Hoff was vice president of operations at the Seven Up Co., where he ran company-owned plants throughout North America, and was also the vice president, retail sales, during his four year tenure. Earlier, Hoff was part of the founding team of A&W Beverages, where, during his seven years with the company, he helped build the company into a worldwide leader in the beverage industry. Hoff holds a B.S. degree in business and marketing from the University of San Francisco; he resides with his family in Los Altos Hills, Calif. Deal to Bring Web Game to CD-ROM GT Interactive Software Corp. has entered into an agreement with CyberSites Inc. for the rights to publish CyberSites' Internet mystery game, SPQR, on CD-ROM. The deal's terms weren't disclosed. According to GT, the agreement represents the first time a game designed for the Internet is being brought to CD-ROM. GT expects that PCs, Macintosh and game machine versions of SPQR will be available later this year. The company says it also plans to work with CyberSites on future CD-ROM titles with Internet components. SPQR has quickly achieved success as a World Wide Web game, receiving positive response from game fans, puzzle enthusiasts and reviewers alike. The game has generated more than 12 million hits since its July 1995 launch on Time Warner's Pathfinder site (www.Pathfinder.com/twep/rome). "SPQR encompasses all of the elements we look for in a hit game - a compelling storyline, incredible graphics, entertaining game play and a built-in fan base, " says Chris Garske, GT's senior vice president of publishing. "We are excited to work with GT Interactive to bring SPQR to CD- ROM," adds Rory O'Neill, president of CyberSites. "Combining our development expertise with GT Interactive's marketing and distribution strength, we believe we will successfully bring the mass market an even more exciting version of our game." ONLINE WEEKLY STReport OnLine The wires are a hummin'! PEOPLE... ARE TALKING On CompuServe compiled by Joe Mirando 73637,2262 Well folks, remember the stomach virus I had about a week and a half ago? And remember that I said last week that each year this virus seems to learn a new trick? Well, it seems that this little bug spent part of this last year in Australia because it has learned how to boomerang! Yes, that's right, as if I didn't enjoy it enough the first time around I am now being treated to another few days of discomfort. Heck, I'll get over it eventually... I just won't enjoy myself much till then. My great fear is that, this weekend when I see my nieces and nephews (who were kind enough to share this little beastie with me in the first place), I'll have to deal with it yet again. Okay, on to computer-related stuff. I've recently taken an interest in getting on the World Wide Web using my ST. Of all the options out there, there really aren't any perfect choices out there. You can either use a terminal program and not get the graphics, use a UNIX clone and slow your system way down (not to mention sacrificing a hard drive partition to UNIX- only hell), or use a small, easy to use, shareware program that uses a protocol that is being phased out by Internet Service Providers. There is hope that this will change, but it ain't here yet. So, for now the best bet is to use a program called CAB (Crystal Atari Browser) and find a provider that can give you a SLIP connection. Until we find the perfect answer, I'll be quite happy to cruise around on CompuServe and do what I've been doing for years now. I still learn a lot, I still have a lot of fun, I still meet new friends all the time. Let's take a look at what's going on this week! >From the Atari Computing Forum On the subject of difference between ST ram and TT ram, my pal Gregg Anderson posts: "While all programs have to use ST Ram to display their graphics and access other parts of the system, the bulk of their work can be done in TT Ram faster than in ST Ram... I don't do a lot of complex CAD work, just a little simple drafting with EasyDraw (and maybe Kadinsky later). Most of my work is wit hAtariWorks and Calamus SL (I finally got tired of all the disk access at 600 DPI with virtual memory active). The process to upgrade the ST RAM boards sounds interesting, let us know how well it works out for you. Who knows, your contact may have started a new career for himself if it proves both practical and affordable." Bill Anderson tells Gregg about his TT's ST ram board: "The 10 meg ST RAM board works very well. Jeff, the guy I bought it from, said that it didn't work with Flash, which is no problem for me, since I don't use Flash. I did notice a problem loading the spell checking dictionary for 1st Word Plus, which is not as much of a problem as it used to be, since I've started using Atari Works instead." On the subject of using ST-formatted disks in a Macintosh, Mark Kelling posts: "...The ability of the Mac to read PC format disks is very limited. The Mac _insists_ the disk is in a by-the-book PC format. That means: no twister, extra segments, extra tracks, or extra or different ANYTHING. The ST differs from the PC standard in a very small way, but it is enough so that the Mac usually won't read the disk. I have had good luck with disks formatted while in Universal Item Selector. It seems to produce a more PC type of disk. Lately, though, I have just been buying preformatted disks. The price is the same at the store I shop at and since I only use the disks in Macs and STs I doubt any virus present on the disks would do much damage to either machine." Mark Kelling tells us about some of the things to watch out for on a Mac: "My copy of MacCIM has a "suggested" RAM requirement of 2300K and a minimum of 2Meg. If you are left with less than two Meg, that probably is the reason the current MacCIM won't run on your system. Also, I noticed you said you have System 7.1. Docs with MacCIM 2.4.3b say it is "suggested" to use System 7.5 to avoid crash problems. In my short time with Macs, I have found that these "suggestions" are actually _requirements_ and if the machine you try to use doesn't exceed these the chances of having a program perform for you are minimal! I have seen the speed difference in ASCII mode too. Maybe that's because so many CIS users are in the HMI CIM environment. The ASCII servers have a light load and can get around to you sooner." Robert Aries tells Mark: "I figured that memory was the problem with running MacCIM. I guess I'm just used to my ST, with 2.5 megs of ram-- more than I've *ever* needed. I've heard that memory prices have gone down recently. When I get the word from my accountant as to how much of my savings account will be transferred to Uncle Sam's coffers, I'll see if I can add some to the Duo 210. Getting system 7.5.x may be more problematic--I have an 80 meg HD that's almost full, and I hear that 7.5 is kind of a hog. Also, I wonder how fast it'll be on the Duo ('030 at 25Mhz--not exactly a speed demon in the Mac world)." Mark tells Robert: "Memory prices do seem lower now. A local computer retailer had an add last week offering an 8Meg SIMM installed for $99 -- if you purchased any computer from them. I have not found Mac memory prices that low, especially since most Macs seem to want you to install SIMMs in groups of two. For example, my new 6220CD with 16Meg would require I purchase _TWO_ SIMMS of equal RAM to upgrade which would be to 32Meg at a cost of a couple thousand! I'm not sure how much space the System 7.5 takes up, but my system folder is close to 50Meg in size! [This of course includes tons of extras in the form of Preference files, extra fonts, etc. Your mileage may vary ;-) ] The update released by Apple to bring everyone up to System 7.5.3 is 30Meg by itself. Guess Gigabyte drives aren't that big after all!" Shaun Johnson asks Chief Sysop Ron Luks: "I was wondering if you could tell me how to get into a private room when in a chat forum. I use Flash II software. People ring me also to talk and I don't know how to anwser. I would appreciate any help, I hear your the guy to ask!!" Sysop Ron tells Shaun: "Go into any conference room and type /HELP for a full set of commands for using the private talk groups available in this forum." Robert Grode tells us: "Boy, I'm like so confused on what is the best Package to have for accessing the Internet! Can anyone give me some suggestions. I currently have the WWW130 P Package. I cant seem to get cab to work; with anysort of grace anyway. It works but is combersome and slow and has tons of errors and lockups. I was thinking of using MINT. I downloaded it and then read something on KA9Q. I'm really lost as to which one is the best. I really like the thought of regular HTML pages for the atari, like cab. Can either MINT or KA9Q offer IMG's and GIF's and other picture files on regular pages?" Sysop Jim Ness tells Robert: "You may want to look at the package uploaded into our Telecom Library (library #2) by Dana Jacobson recently.." This is the package that I was talking about folks. If I get a chance to sign up with an ISP (Internet Service Provider), I'll let you know how it works out. Jon Sanford asks about using MagiCMac, the Atari ST emulator for the Mac: "I read here that MagiCMac ver. 1.2.5 "had some problems" I spent a little time tring to get some Atari programs to run on the Mac. Gave up with out much perserverance. I am wondering if i should try harder or try to find a newer version." P. Walding tells Jon: "I have had no great problems with MagicMac V1.2.5 Certainly it is the most stable of the releases so far and , from memory , the first to run under PowerMac's. I understand that V1.2.7 should be out soon. Personally , I find MagicMac works quite well. Most software that runs under Magic / Geneva performs with no problems. I had already been running Geneva for some time so had weaned off software that did not 'follow the rules' before I started MagicMac." Jon tells "P.": "Thanks I need some encourageing words to get back to work on it. The list of working Atari programs that Mark put up contained none of the ones I have, so I am crashing everything I try so far. Next time Ill start with simpiler programs first. The GDOS ASSIGN.SYS stuff may be my problem." Michel Vanhamme adds: "Apart from my peculiar problems (no 16 and 24-bit display with NVDI, no French keyboard), I've had no problems with Atari software. In fact, everything I used to run on my Falcon seems to run flawlessly under MagicMac 1.2.5. But keep in mind that almost all of my programs were released after the Falcon had been lauched, when software became a lot more 'compatible' than before." Jon has a 'eureka moment' and tells Michel: "Ahaha! almost all my software is old. I have been going thru the Graphic section of the GEMNI CD ROM. Throwing away the stuff that crashes immediately & saving the maybe working for further inspection later. At this point a list of what doesn't work would be the longer, by far. I hope to post a list of what I find that works RSN. Inspite of my apparent complaining. I am fantasizing doing a show & tell of MagiCMac at the local Macintosh users group. It really bugs me that people who have never seen an ATARI assume the Mac was so much better in the old days. (@ 7 years ago) It was amazing compared to MS/DOS but ATARI & AMIGA were hard competition." Mark Kelling jumps in and adds: "Which type of programs did you try? MagicMac 1.2.5 is the latest available as a demo, a version 1.4 should be along by May. The hardest thing I have found about getting programs to run in MagicMac is getting them onto a floppy the Mac will read! (Telecom programs are an almost sure bet _not_ to run, as are games which require ST low res. The Mac can't get that low!!)" Jon tells Mark: "I was trying EASYDRAW, PageStream, I think I need to study the setup procedures of EASE. The Mac has got me used to not reading DOCs. I have started going thru the GEMNI CD ROM. There is a lot of stuff I haven't tried on the ATARI yet. So I'm killing 2 birds so to speak. I transfer ATARI programs onto a AHDI formatted EZ135 disk then plug it into the Mac. The people at TOAD sold me a cable to connect the ATARI HD to the Mac SCST bus but the former method is easier for me. I actually haven't tried loading an ATARI program from Floppy yet. I also think that games don't work because game programmers go down to the metal for speed & performance of their program caring little about the guidelines for future compatibility & ..." Stewart Murrell asks for help in hooking up a serial printer: "Does anyone know which pins to use to make a serial lead between an Atari 520 STE and a Quendata DWP 1120 daisywheel printer? I've previously had the printer connected to an IBM-compatible using a lead with 25-pin D connectors with pins 2 to 3, 3 to 2, 4 to 20, 20 to 4, 7 to 7 (gnd), and pins 4, 6 and 8 linked together in each connector. Worked fine with the PC, but not on the Atari. The first few characters get printed OK, but then there are lots of "@" characters. I suspect that flow control's not working. I've tried with the Atari set to use XOn/XOff, Hardware, and both. Nothing works." Sysop Bob Retelle tells Stewart: "From the description of the pin connections in the cable you're using, it sounds like it's a "null modem" cable.. that is, everything is connected "in reverse"... It seems odd that a printer would need that kind of cable... I wonder if trying a normal, "straight through" RS-232 cable would work. That is, one with all the pins wired directly from one end to the other, pin 1 to pin 1, pin 2 to pin 2, etc. A standard PC-style modem cable with 25 pin connectors should work. Maybe you could find someone with such a cable who would be willing to let you borrow it just to give it a try... Then again, that doesn't explain why some of the characters print OK. Pins 4 and 5 are the CTS/RTS pair which should be involved in hardware flow control. It doesn't sound like your cable has pin 5 connected at all. Do you have a manual for the printer that gives the pinouts for the connector?" Stewart tells Sysop Bob: "Right, I finished blushing now. That was my mistake in scribbling down the connections, of course. As you rightly say, the connection I described would have been along the lines of a null modem cable, and would not have worked with the PC previously, nor with the Atari for those few characters (possibly 128 of them before all the "@" signs start. Here's what I suspect the message *should* have said... ... a lead with 25-pin D connectors with pins 2 to 2, 3 to 3, 5 to 20, 20 to 5, 7 to 7 (gnd), and pins 4, 6 and 8 linked together in each connector... But if the CTS/RTS is looped back locally, and XOn/Xoff is enabled on both ports, that should be good enough, shouldn't it? Not here (the system is at someone else's house) but I would imagine it's pretty standard, whatever 'standard' means in the world of serial comms. I suspect the problem is something to do with the wiring of the lead. BTW, I forgot to mention that this was when printing from Protext -- don't know whether that will have a bearing on anything." Sysop Bob tells Stewart: "Yes.. if software flow control is enabled, the RTS/CTS signals shouldn't matter. In fact, the wiring of the cable you just described sounds like it should work just the way it is. Have you been able to try printing from anything other than Protext..? Just as a way to eliminate anything related to the program... maybe try printing a document right from the desktop. Here's a thought... did you use the Control Panel Accessory to redirect the output from the parallel port to the serial port, or is that handled by Protext..? If the latter, there may be some setups in the program that might have to be looked at... There's a setup dialogue box in the Control Panel accessory associated with the VT-52 emulator that should let you control a number of things like the number of dots per inch and redirecting the printer output to the serial port... it sounds like Protext is handling that internally in this case. What that means is that no other printing will work to the serial printer though... printing from the Desktop or from other programs will still go to the default parallel port. I hate to have to suggest it, but it sounds like having the Protext documentation might be necessary to get this sorted out..." Well folks, that's about it for this week. Tune in again next time, same time, same station, and be ready to listen to what they are saying when... PEOPLE ARE TALKING EDITORIAL QUICKIES When will all Governments, learn to represent the people... ... instead of resent them?!? ...weary of political phonies STReport International OnLine Magazine [S]ilicon [T]imes [R]eport HTTP://WWW.STREPORT.COM AVAILABLE WORLDWIDE ON OVER 100,000 PRIVATE BBS SYSTEMS All Items quoted, in whole or in part, are done so under the provisions of The Fair Use Law of The Copyright Laws of the U.S.A. Views, Opinions and Editorial Articles presented herein are not necessarily those of the editors/staff of STReport International OnLine Magazine. Permission to reprint articles is hereby granted, unless otherwise noted. Reprints must, without exception, include the name of the publication, date, issue number and the author's name. STR, CPU, STReport and/or portions therein may not be edited, used, duplicated or transmitted in any way without prior written permission. STR, CPU, STReport, at the time of publication, is believed reasonably accurate. 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