Skip to main content

Full text of "Current Notes 1988 06"

See other formats



Vol. 8 No. 5 June 1988 



SPECIAL REPORT: 

ay The HP "DeskJet" Ink Jet 
Printer 

ay GOE—Desktop Environment 
for the Atari 8-bit. 


In This Issue 


Latest ATARI ST and XE News 

Magic Sac Update 

Small World: Online Battles 

The Market for CD-ROM Drives 

Small Miracles for your XE 

Tips’N’Traps 

Product Reviews: 

Awardmaker Plus 

Bug Hunt and Barnyard Blaster 

Cyber Control 

Mission Impossible II 

Neo Desk 

Nite Lite Multiline BBS 
Phantasie III 

Rambo XL and US Doubler 
Superbase Personal 
Tempus 
WordUp 


[ HaM r iftic>nri' ~ *prt f'o,j oim 

♦DC* StWjjsy | Stitiw 

Neh . - diverse ■ 

«<i.. , . 


W8U5Tfc£KU«R«fiL# 




Sudmort* Sraroher 
Ka« Katl krtf. ! 


□EMisiaaj 


‘CEnimm 






Your Monitor on the World of Atari 


CN 805 
























The reviews are in . . . 

"‘A Best Buy’ Fm impressed" 

David H. Ahl, Atari Explorer, Nov-Dec 1987 

"If you’ve got an Atari, you probably need this program." 

Jerry Pournell, Byte Magazine, October 1987 


"pc-ditto is a winner." 


Charlie Young, ST World, July 1987 


'This is the product we have been looking for." 

Donna Wesolowski, ST Informer, August 1987 

"This truly incredible software emulator really works." 

Mike Gibbons, Current Notes, September 1987 


NOW! RUN THESE IBM PROGRAMS ON YOUR ATARI ST. 


Lotus 1-2-3 
Enable 
Sidekick 
Crosstalk IV 
EasyCAD 
GW Basic 


Flight Simulator 

Ability 

Superkey 

Carbon Copy 

DAC Easy Accounting 

Managing Your Money 


Framework 
DESQview 
Norton Utilites 
Chart-Master 
BPI Accounting 
Silvia Porter’s 


And Hundreds More! 


Symphony 

Q&A 

dBase 11,111,111+ 
Print Shop 
Turbo Pascal 
pfs:Professional 
File 


pc-ditto is a software-only utility which expands the power of your Atari ST to imitate an 
IBM PC XT. No extra hardware is required (an optional 5.25-inch drive may be required 
for 5.25-inch disks). All your IBM disks will work "out-of-the-box". 


pc-ditto features include: 

o both the 520ST and the 1040ST supported 
o up to 703K usable memory (1040ST) 
o not copy-protected -- installable on hard disk 
o imitates IBM monochrome and IBM color 
graphics adapters 

o access to hard disk, if hard disk used 
o optionally boots DOS from hard disk 
o parallel and serial ports fully supported 
o supports 3.5-inch 720K format and 360K single¬ 
sided formats 

o supports optional 5.25-inch 40-track drives 


System requirements: 

> IBM PC-DOS or Compaq MS-DOS version 
3.2 or above recommended 

> optional 5.25-inch drive is required to use 
5.25-inch disks 

) 3.5-inch 720K DOS disks require a double¬ 
sided drive (Atari SF314 or equivalent) 

See pc-ditto today at an Atari dealer near you, 
or write for free information! 


$89.95 


pc-ditto 

by 

Avant-Garde Systems 
381 Pablo Point Drive 
Jacksonville, Florida 32225 
(904) 221-2904 


Avant-Garde Systems, 381 Pablo Point Dr. 
Jacksonville, Florida 32225 (904) 221-2904 
Yes! Please send information on pc-ditto. 
Name__ 


Address 
City_ 


_State_Zip_ 


Page 2 


CURRENT NOTES 


June 1988 

















June, 1988 


S®ftw®[r<g Spsdul ®ff ft® ffitomift 

Timeworks Desktop Publisher 

for the Atari ST 

list price $129.95...with this ad... 

09.95 

While supplies last_(12 on hand) 

(Your Issue of Current Notes must have your mailing label on It, e.g. club members only.) 


Works on any ST 

Very easy to use 

WYSIWYG (what you see Is 
what you get) 

Full featured 

Imports text from Word Writer, 
1st Word, others 


Imports graphics from Degas, 
Neo chrome. Easy Draw, others 

Automatic Kearnlng, Hyphenation, 
Bulletlng, Text Flow,and Word Wrap 

Precision Placement 

Supports most 9 pin, 24 pin, and 
Laser Printers 


This ad was produced with Desktop Publisher ST and was printed with an ordinary, 9 pin, dot-matrix printer. 


Diskccvery 

Seven Corners Center (Mall) 

Inside the Beltway, at the Intersection of Rt. 7 & 50 
Hours: 9:30-9:30 Mon-Sat, 12-5 Sun 
Call (703) 536-5040 


June 1988 


CURRENT NOTES 


Page 3 





Current Notes (ISSN 8750-1937) 
is published monthly (excluding 
January and August) by Current 
Notes, Inc., 122 N. Johnson Rd., 
Sterling, VA 22170 (703) 450-4761. 
Direct subscriptions to Current 
Notes are available for $20/year 
($36/2 years). Second-Class Pos- 
tage paid at Sterling, VA. _ 

POSTMASTER: Send address 
changes to Current Notes, Inc., 
122 N. Johnson Rd., Sterling, VA 
22170. 

Opinions expressed in this pub¬ 
lication are those of the individual 


authors and do not necessarily 
represent or reflect the opinions of 
Current Notes or any of the partici¬ 
pating user groups none of which 
are affiliated in any way with Atari 
Corp. 


Advertising Rates: 


Ad Size 
Full Page 
2/3 Page 
1/2 Page 
1/3 Page 
1/4 Page 
1/6 Page 
Business Card 


Once 5 times 
$156 $625 

$112 $450 

$88 $382 

$64 $255 

$50 $200 

$36 $144 

$30 $120 


Discounts are available for multiple 
insertions. All ads must be prepaid. 
Send photo-ready copy, by the 
15th of the month preceding pub¬ 
lication, to the publisher. 
PUBLISHER: Joe Waters, 122 N. 
Johnson Rd, Sterling, VA 22170 
(703)450-4761. 

ST EDITOR: Frank Sommers, 
4624 Langdrum Lane, Chevy 
Chase, MD 20815 (301) 656-0719. 

XE EDITOR: Len Poggiali, 225 
Mosley Dr, Syracuse, NY 13206 
(315)437-2456. 

Articles or review material and 
press releases should be sent 
directly to the appropriate editor. 
Deadline date for articles is the 
10th of the month. 


Back Issues: A limited number of 
back issues are available: 1985 : 
($1) JUL-DEC; 1986 : ($1.50) 
FEB.APR-DEC; 1987 : ($2.00) 
FEB-DEC; 1988 : ($2.50) FEB, 
MAR, APR, MAY, JUN 


CURRENT NOTES 


Table of Contents 
June,1988 

CN SPECIAL REPORTS 


28 Laser Quality Without A Laser Price, 

The HP "DeskJet" inkjet printer is without a doubt 
the single most important technological develop¬ 
ment for desktop publishing to come down the 
pike since the laser printer! 

— Review by Jim Wallace 

33 Graphics Operating Environment 

An interview with Shelly Merrill, President of 
Merrill Ward. Ward’s new GOE will give the 
Atari 8-bit user the visual equivalent of the ST 
GEM desktop on their XE/XL. 

- Interview by Len Poggiali 


DEPARTMENTS 

■ SMALL MIRACLES: FLAG, GTIATEST, GTIA DEM 2, 

by Joe Russek, 53 

• TIPS’N’TRAPS: Dragon Master, Trinity, Space Quest, 
Beyond Zork, Police Quest, Lurking Horror, The Pawn, by 
Jim Stevenson Jr., 54 

■ THE GAME CART : Bug Hunt and Barnyard Blaster, by 
Joe Poggiali, 56 

■ PD GEMS for the XE/XL: Daisy Dot, Space Lords, 
Print Shop Icons, Print Shop Utilities, Adventurer’s Com¬ 
panion, Genera! Ledger and Smartsheet, by Al Friedman 
and Roy Brooks, 

WAACE NEWS, 72 
CN REGISTERED CLUBS, 74 


Page 4 


CURRENT NOTES 


June 1988 















VOLUME 8, NO 5 - JUNE, 1988 



As File Edit Options Page Stale Text Graphics Help 



- — 

1 B:\SAHPLE 1.DTP 

i - n — r 

» 

[dl| 

tUi{ 

Times_24 Swiss 

Times lo Swiss 

Times 16 T-, „ Or Swiss 16 
Time 12 TypVT 26 Swiss 12 

•n™. so 1 Typevritur 13 io 

Camdot $6 

24 

20 

GD(e)C3 GDIS 

iKKTTmairre) trm 

Rairfnfa 16 

Ai 


SI 5 

Canute IS 

ifcwfa H 

i J 


0 








P.33 


P.36 


P.40 


NEWS ♦ COMMENTARY PRODUCT REVIEWS 


* EDITORIAL ♦ Joe Waters, 6 

Atari desktop publishing looking good, but 
Atari needs to pay more attention to its 
dealers and developers. 

□ ST UPDATE ♦ Frank Sommers, 12 

All the latest news and developments in 
the ST World 

■ XE UPDATE ♦ Len Poggiali, 15 

Latest XE News: Newsroom comes to the 
8-bits, Sons of Liberty Arrives; More on the 
XF551 Drive. 

□ MAGIC SAC UPDATE ♦ Jeff 
Greenblatt, 16 

Latest updates to the Magic Hard Disk and 
Floppy Disk formatters and news on 
Translator problems 

• SMALL WORLD ♦ Dave Small, 20 

Early online PLATO battles to rival the 
current SDI debates, a look at telearguing. 

* CD REPORT^ Linda Helgerson, 24 

A look at the market for CD-ROM drives- 
-sales require applications. 

♦ ATARI SCUTTLEBITS ♦ Bob 
Kelly, 26 

User groups are having a rough time—they 
need help from Atari. 


KEY: 

□ ST-related review or article. 

■ XE/XL related review or article. 
* Machine independent article. 


□ Award maker Plus, Bill Moes, 40 

■ Barnyard Blaster, 

Len Poggiali, 56 

■ Bug Hunt, Len Poggiali, 56 

□ Cyber Control, Bill Moes, 46 

■ Dropzone, Joe Pietrafeso, 66 

□ Fontz! Andrzej Wrotniak, 36 

□ Juggler I & II, Donald C. Lyles, 52 

□ Mission Impossible II, 

Dan Greenblatt, 48 

□ Neo Desk, Andrzej Wrotniak, 36 

□ Nite Lite Multiline BBS, 

Ed Seward, 42 

□ Phantasie III, Ray Millard, 50 

■ Pirates of the Barbary Coast, 
Lincoln Hallen, 63 

□ Preschool Kidprogs, 

Roger Abram, 49 

□ Publisher ST, 

Andrzej Wrotniak, 36 

■ RamboXL,AI Williams, 58 

□ Superbase Personal, 

John Barnes, 60 

□ Tempus, Andrzej Wrotniak, 36 

■ US Doubler, Al Williams, 58 

□ WordUp, Milt Creighton, 44 


June 1988 


CURRENT NOTES 


Page 5 















































































EDITORIAL ♦ Joe Waters 


This is our second “All-Atari” issue. As you can 
see, we have done some more fine-tuning this month. 

I don’t know how it will look when it is printed, but the 
master copy, rolling off the Atari Laser on special paper 
for camera-ready masters (Hammermill Laser Plus), 
looks very good indeed. As I flip through these pages, I 
am reminded of a recent TV commercial. Perhaps 
you’ve seen it. 

You and your colleagues have just handed your 
final report to a potential new client. (The report looks 
amazingly like this issue of Current Notes) The client is 
pleased, but at the same time disappointed and 
concerned. He says, “Hey, this is great. But you 
promised to keep all of our information secret. It’s 
obvious that you called in typesetters, artists, printers, 
and what have you to produce this report.” 

You respond, “But we didn’t call in anyone. That 
whole report was produced by Joe, here, sitting at his 
desk using his computer.” With a look of astonishment, 
they reply, “Wow! What kind of a computer does work 
like this?” You coyly reply, “Hire us and we’ll tell you.” 
Just imagine their astonishment when they hire you 
and you tell them an Atari produced the report! 

Yes, an Atari desktop publishing system produced 
this issue of Current Notes. It included the Atari Mega 
ST4, the Atari SLM804 laser printer, and, the most 
important ingredient, Timeworks Publisher. If I had not 
committed to Atari hardware, I could have produced a 
perfectly good issue of Current Notes months ago by 
using the Atari Mega (or 1040ST for that matter), 
coupled with a postscript laser printer and Soft Logik’s 
Publishing Partner. Again, the key ingredient in that 
combination would have been, not the computer, nor 
the printer since any postscript printer would do, but 
rather the software that made it possible. 

If you take away Publisher from my current hard¬ 
ware configuration, Atari would have no viable desktop 
publishing alternative. Indeed, with only the poor Diablo 
emulator provided by Atari, the Atari laser can’t even 
reliably be used as a printer. 

In fact, in every area where the Atari ST computers 
are doing fine—music, graphics, word processing, 
computer-aided-design, programming languages— 
the reason is because of efforts by third party software 
vendors. The ST is easily the most versatile computer 
on the market. It has a large number of programs 
available running under its own GEM interface. If users, 
however, prefer a Unix or MS-DOS style environment, 
there are shells that run on the ST and simulate those 
environments. Only the Atari ST can run its own 
programs as well a s Macintosh and IBM programs. The 
Macintosh emulation is courtesy of Dave Small. The 
IBM emulation is courtesy of Bill Teal. Neither of these 
developers had anything to do with Atari, nor did Atari 
lend them any assistance. 


I’m pointing out what many of you already know is 
the obvious. No computer is going to get anywhere in 
the market without software, good software. Atari can 
manufacture the hardware. They can offer it at an 
attractive price (remember their slogan, “Power without 
the Price.”) But nobody will buy Atari hardware unless 
there are programs available for that hardware. 

I know that. You know that. But, does Atari know 
that? Jack Tramiel has often been quoted as saying 
“Business is War!” The aggressive pricing of the Atari 
line is clearly his most potent weapon in that war. But 
who is the enemy? 

Atari’s reputation among software developers is 
dismal at best (have any of you actually seen the ST 
“developer’s kit” that Atari provides?). Atari’s marketing 
program has been a complete and utter shambles and 
few Atari dealers have kind words to say about the 
company. Atari’s recent announcement that they will 
no longer sell through distributors means that dealers, 
who have established credit lines with their local 
distributor, now must order direct from Atari. And, since 
business is war, Atari demands that everyone pay cash 
up front. 

Atari owners are perhaps the luckiest of the lot 
since they got these wonderful computers at great 
prices. But, they’ve gotten their computers from their 
local Atari dealers and the software that makes the 
machines shine, from third party software developers. 
Atari Corporation has yet to evidence any interest in 
owners of Atari computers once they have purchased 
their machine. 

It’s clear that if Atari succeeds, Atari dealers, Atari 
software developers, Atari owners, (and Current Notes, 
too), will also succeed. But Atari cannot succeed by 
itself. It should not declare war on its friends. To do 
battle in this chaotic microcomputer marketplace, you 
need allies. Atari must strengthen its dealer network 
(and it can’t afford to do that by cutting off any of their 
current dealers). It must also strengthen ties with 
software developers and Atari users. It is not enough 
for Atari to make profits. Atari dealers and Atari 
developers must also be able to make profits. Other¬ 
wise both groups will be forced to diversify their risks 
and move on to other computers besides Atari. 

Well, enough Atari-bashing for awhile. You watch. 
With a little help from their friends, Atari will get their 
act straight. In the meantime, let’s look at some of the 
good news on the Atari front. 8-bit owners will soon 
have their own desktop, see the interview with Merrill 
Ward (note, by the way, that this breakthrough did not 
originate with Atari.) All Atari owners will be interested 
in reading about the new HP DeskJet printer—the 
"poor" man’s laser printer. There are five pages in this 
issue printed with the DeskJet. See if you can find 
them. (Answers on page 74, but don’t peek.) 


Page 6 


CURRENT NOTES 


June 1988 






Are you satisfied with your 
computer store? _ 

If so, you’re probably already an ACA customer! 

If not, why settle for less than you deserve? 

At Applied Computer Associates, we know the value of customer 
satisfaction. That’s why we give you the ACA guarantees: 

o Try before you buy! Sit down and test drive that software you’ve 
been considering. 

o If you’re not completely satisfied with your purchase, return it in 
resalable condition within 14 days for full store credit. 

o If you’re having trouble using a package, call to set up an appoint¬ 
ment for some help. 


June Specials 

SSAYIE 3*8% 
Publisher ST 

Desktop Publishing! 

Special Price..$79.95 

Regular Price.$129.95 

SAVE 4.®% 
Fontz! 

Create your own fonts! 

Special Price.$ 17.95 

Regular Price.$29.95 

SaVYIE 317/% 
Dungeon Master 

Graphic adventure game! 

Special Price. $2 1.95 

Regular Price.$34.95 


Recent Arrivals 


Mark Williams’ CSD • Laser C • Word-Up • Fontz! • NeoDesk • Dungeon 
Master Hintbooks • Harrier Combat Simulator • Wizball • Rockford • U.M.S. 
Carrier Command • Scrabble • Hunt for Red October • Deathsword 


ST hard disks built to youf specifications—GALL! ] 






J&T Call the ! 
ACA BBS | 

300/1200/24001 

(301) 948- | 

0792 


Applied Computer 
Associates 

16220 Frederick Road 


Store Hours: 

m 

Monday 

m 

P 

to 

H3 

•ssps 

Saturday 


10am to 7pm 









































LETTERS TO THE EDITOR 



More STAR WARS.... 


Dear Current Notes, 

The ‘SDI Computing, Star Wars 
and the ST’, by Chris Anderson 
made me so mad that I am going 
to have to write a letter to com¬ 
plain. The rest of the April Current 
Notes is pretty good, so since I am 
writing ... I might as well say some 
nice things, too. 

First of all, Chris Anderson’s 
article. Why are you subjecting me 
to such nonsensical mumblings. 
What after all does he say? All his 
article amounts to is a poorly con¬ 
ceived political diatribe. I buy your 
magazine because it discusses the 
far-ranging possibilities of ST com¬ 
puting, not political indoctrination. 

Let’s be honest. Why is Chris 
Anderson writing? Because he 
thinks artificial intelligence is a dead 
end? Because he thinks people are 
wasting their time on neural net¬ 
works? No. He is motivated to write 
by political beliefs about high tech 
warfare. His comments would go 
over fine in a “no nukes” meeting. 
He talks in the same condescend¬ 
ing tone. 

What makes him so superior? 
Why does he get to tell David Small 
and your readers that they are 
wasting their time with childish fan¬ 
tasies? He hasn’t told me anything 
new. He hasn’t piqued my interest 
about a new line of thought. 

What he has done is get a 
“can’t be done” article in your 
magazine. If you want a real good 
“can’t be done” article, go hire a 
Macintosh user to write a few 
“future of Atari ST” articles. 

I am more than a little tired of 
putting up with these people who 
advise us all to put our heads in the 
sand. Intercontinental ballistic mis¬ 
siles can be intercepted and des¬ 
troyed. It has been done more than 
once by our own scientists. Satel¬ 
lites can be destroyed in space. 
The Russians have long had that 
capability. Reduction of a Russian 
first strike’s effectiveness can be 


accomplished, look at the concern 
the Russians show about our SDI 
program. 

His article is political, not tech¬ 
nical. It does not belong in your 
magazine. 

Now, on to more pleasant 
topics. 

I really enjoyed the TOS/2 arti¬ 
cle. (Now that is something far 
fetched.) There is no doubt in my 
mind that the operating system of 
the Atari ST needs upgrading. 
There are so many improvements 
individual programmers have 
already created for the ST, i.e. 
more colors, better dialog windows, 
Turbo ST, etc., etc. Keep pushing 
for an operating system upgrade. 
More discussion of unix would be 
nice, too. 

Also, I liked the “Latest News in 
the ST World.” I have been reading 
stories about the WordPerfect crisis 
on the BBS. It was nice to get a 
wrap-up story on it. 

The OSS article was great. As a 
Personal Pascal user, I took a per¬ 
sonal interest in the comments. 

As always, the David Small arti¬ 
cle was wonderful. I find his articles 
worth the price of the magazine 
itself. You have a very unique asset 
in David. I know of no other deve¬ 
loper with his literary skills. Give 
him a raise. Syndicate his articles. 
Now, if you could only get Sam 
Tramiel to write a monthly article 
with a blow-by-blow account of 
the blitter chip fiasco. 

I skimmed over the Microsoft 
Write and Tang/ewood articles. I 
appreciate the articles about things 
that don’t work...I drop them from 
my list of things to buy, but I don’t 
read them. 

The Cyber-Paint article was 
interesting. My kids use Flicker, so 
now I have a reference point for 
Cyber-paint. By the way, I like your 
open-minded references to other 
ST magazines. An article on the 
best program published by ST 
magazines would be interesting. 

The Ultima 4 article made me 
want to get a copy. My kids are 
working on solving Dungeon Mas¬ 


ter. After about a month of constant 
play they are both down on level 11 
or 12. All Dungeon Master hints are 
warmly accepted. 

Well, this rambling letter has to 
end somewhere, so it might as well 
be here. Thank you for putting 
together such an informative maga¬ 
zine. 

Mark M. Mills 

Dallas, Texas 

[My first reaction to Chris’s article 
was somewhat similar to yours, but 
on a second reading i thought there 
certain/y was a computer-re/ated 
message there (although the con¬ 
nection to the ST was tenuous at 
best). The viability of SDi is, of 
course, a hot/y debated issue. Chris 
has put forth one view and you 
have countered with another, (in¬ 
deed, even Dave Small has some 
words to contribute to the subject, 
this month) Now, i am inclined to 
follow your suggestion and let that 
debate continue in other forums. 
Current Notes wi/i keep it’s focus on 
Atari.) 


April Fool? 


Dear Current Notes: 

Har de har. Very funny, boys. I 
have to admit you guys had me 
going there for a few minutes, until I 
remembered what month it was. 

I always look forward to the 
April issues to come out, and the 
“gag” articles the editors always try 
to sneak in. Last year an ST maga¬ 
zine (don’t recall which one) had a 
picture of a Sony compact disk with 
a ribbon cable stuck in the side, 
pretending it was the new CD- 
ROM. I had some difficulty con¬ 
vincing some of the local ST’ers 
that it was not on the level. 

But your April “guest editorial” 
had that one all beat! (I did get the 
issue kind of late in the month, so it 
caught me off guard a little, I 
guess.) But imagine a “Computer¬ 
bashing” article, berating the ST, in 


Page 8 


CURRENT NOTES 


June 1988 











an ST magazine! And endorsed as 
“eloquently expressed” by the edi¬ 
tor himself! 

When I got to the local ST 
store, one of the salespeople was 
reading it and grousing about this 
“attack”. I didn’t get to read it until I 
got home; wait till I see him again! 
Will I give him a hard time. Can’t 
blame him too much, though. I 
thought it was serious too, until I 
saw some of the comparisons. 

First, let’s compare it to the AT. 
And the ST’s graphics to 256K EGA 
or even the VGA. Never mind that 
such a system costs about $2,500 
compared to the ST color system at 
under $1,000. An “Ultimate EGA 
board with monitor” goes for $869 
in PC Week. That’s almost as much 
as a whole ST color system! Or let’s 
compare TOS to OS/2; that’ll be 
fun! Who is this “eloquent” edi¬ 
torialist who doesn’t know that 
WordPerfect is available for the ST, 
but thinks that OS/2 is available? 
My definition of a “real operating 
system” includes it being on the 
shelves, and as far as I have been 
able to determine, OS/2 is still in 
the offing. 

I got a real chuckle out of the 
“multitasking” and Windows issues, 
too. The ST hasn’t got either at the 
start of the article, but by the 
end....well, the current GEM is 
“quite suitable for multitasking” and 
Megamax’s new Laser C will do 
windows after all. 

And let’s not forget the state¬ 
ment that the ST “is roughly at the 
same stage IBM was at when it 
released the AT”! The XT was 
already a stable in the business 
community, which was then waiting 
for a more powerful version. The ST 
is only beginning to be recognized 
as the powerful system it is. Atari 
would go under in a heartbeat if 
they tried to introduce a 25mhz 
68020 at this stage. Besides a few 
power-hungry hackers with money 
to burn (I’d say about $4,000- 
$5,000 minimum), who would they 
sell them to? 

The final howls were at the end, 
when he also started berating the 
PS/2 models. This is a $12,000+ 
system with one user (model 80)! I 


can see why he might not like 
it—he’s probably comparing it to a 
Cray 2 ($17+ million)! 

I kept waiting for the punchline 
and never came across it, but 
maybe it was just that understated 
humor editors are so good at. But 
thanks for all the chuckles anyway, 
guys. Man, I can’t wait till next year! 

James W. Alder 


WordPerfect and 
Clocks 


Dear Joe, 

I just received my March issue 
of Current Notes today, and I wan¬ 
ted to make a couple of comments, 
along with ordering from the ST 
Library. 

First of all, I find I sit down 
immediately and read the whole 
magazine right through. Of course, 
that does not include the XE pages, 
since I never owned one, and they 
have no meaning for me. Then, I 
find that repeatedly over the next 
couple of weeks, I am sitting down, 
or lying in bed at night re-reading 
some of the articles. I subscribe to 
a couple of other computer maga¬ 
zines, but this is the one I find 
myself coming back to time and 
time again. 

Secondly, I have really enjoyed 
the various articles over the two 
years I have been a subscriber. In 
the last couple of issues, I have 
particularly enjoyed Dave Small’s 
articles. He does a good job of 
writing, which is not always true of 
computer types. 

Thirdly, I hope you will continue 
with the sort of magazine that it is. I 
hope you will continue to serve the 
ST (and the 8-bit) community. 

I have been using WordPerfect 
for a while now, and find that the 
more I use it, the better it becomes. 

I have gone through several issues, 
and the one I am using at the 
present is the 1/29/88 issue. It 
seems (to me anyway) that the vast 
majority of the bugs have been 


ironed out. There is one small one 
that bothers me, and that relates to 
the clock card I use. I have a 
Logikhron cartridge, and WordPer¬ 
fect only recognizes the correct 
date if I use STAccounts first. I have 
written to Jeff Wilson about it, and 
he said that they are aware of this 
little problem. This leads me to the 
question I was wanting to ask. Are 
you thinking of a short article on 
“add-on” clocks for the ST? I know 
I would appreciate one, and per¬ 
haps another dealing with some of 
the internal matters, such as the 
various locations date and time are 
stored, and why. 

P.B. Long 

Oshawa, Ontario 

fiWell, cfocks anyone? fn fact, f’m 
sure many of our readers would /ike 
more info on hardware tinkering in 
genera/. The problem is finding 
someone who can handle a key¬ 
board as well as a soldering iron, if 
any of our readers would like to 
give it a shot, give Frank Sommers 
orLen Poggiaii a cai/.J 


Is CN Going to the 
Dogs? 


Dear Joe, 

I would like to make a couple of 
comments on Current Notes. Given 
the large amount of time you spend 
on the publication, and the fact that 
it is getting better every year, I 
really hesitate to criticize. But I have 
finally decided to take pen in hand 
(bit bucket in keyboard?) to pass 
along some comments and sug¬ 
gestions. I would point out that I 
deal in several computing worlds, 
mainframe, super computers, 
workstations, pc’s and clones, and 
finally my 130XE. So, I see com¬ 
puters from a variety of aspects. 

Clearly Atari is at fault for much 
of the complaints that arise about 
piracy. Why, one might ask. Well, 
they are pushing the low end mar¬ 
ket where quality doesn’t count. 
The article by Frank Sommers 
comments that WP suffered loss of 


June 1988 


CURRENT NOTES 


Page 9 






revenue due to piracy. Not neces¬ 
sarily true. People get copies of 
programs to try before making a 
purchase. But the important dif¬ 
ference is that for serious users, 
information and documentation is 
important. Such is virtually never 
forthcoming from Atari, and certainly 
they do not encourage it of the 3rd 
party software vendors. Why? 
Because they are still dealing with 
the neophytes and other “cheap” 
users. To such people, time is free 
and if a copy of a program doesn’t 
work, so what? To me it is impor¬ 
tant. 

The other side of the coin, 
however, is that I expect programs 
to work. I am sorely tried by the 
disclaimers that the software to be 
purchased is not even warranted to 
work . Think about it. That’s the 
statement on the notice on software 
packages. It occurs very frequently 
with Atari software. Some com¬ 
panies won’t even make a refund if 
the stuff doesn’t do what it purports 
to do. I do pay for software, and I 
am offended by this. It also hap¬ 
pens in the IBM world, but it does 
not seem to be as frequent. As a 
final insult, one then has to pay for 
fixes. 

Is “going to Apple Computers” 
anything like “going to the dogs?” 
This is a quote from Roy Brooks in 
the April issue. I use this as an 
introduction to English grammar, 
spelling and punctuation. Current 
Notes does not do very well in this 
regard. To be very emphatic about 
it, the first sentence in this para¬ 
graph is punctuated correctly. 
Current Notes (you) get this wrong 
every time. Current Notes has the 
potential for becoming a dominant 
magazine in the computer world, 
especially if the ST’s sell better and 
Atari supports them in a style to 
which they should become accus¬ 
tomed. But it will never be taken 
seriously with typos, incorrect 
punctuation and spelling errors. 
That is the most important function 
of an Editor, namely making the 
magazine look good. 

As a matter of definition, “clean 
ASCII text” has a carriage return/iine 


feed combination at the end of each 
“line.” That is the ANSI definition of 
a record!!!! WordPerfect does it 
correctly. This is a comment on the 
article by Milt Creighton. 

Mnemonics is the correct spel¬ 
ling for that word, not pneumonic as 
in the article by John Marable in the 
March issue. The latter refers to 
control by air. 

OK, enough said, keep up the 
good work. I don’t really use my 
Atari equipment so much anymore, 
but I continue to read Current Notes 
to keep up on what is happening in 
the Atari world. For the present, 
Atari computers have no credibility 
in the business world. But who 
knows, with a working Transputer 
and real support miracles could 
happen. 

Walter W. Jones 
Gaithersburg, MD 


Bombs Away! 


Ever wondered what those TOS 
error messages and ‘bombs’ on 
your monitor signified? Below is a 
letter, originally written by Darryl 
May, that John Townsend of Atari 
posted on GEnie in January to 
provide some answers. 

Dear ATARI Customer, 

The following is an official list of 
the errors that can appear while you 
are operating your ST computer. 
This first list gives you the GEM 
error messages: 

GEM Error 


OK (No error).0 

Fundamental error.1 

Drive not ready.2 

Unknown command.3 

CRC error.4 

Bad request.5 

Seek error.6 

Unknown media.7 

Sector not found.8 

No paper.9 


Write fault....10 

Read fault.11 

General error.12 

Write protect.13 

Media change.14 

Unknown device.15 

Bad sectors on format.16 

Insert other disk.17 

Invalid function number.32 

File not found.33 

Path not found.34 

No handles left.35 

Access denied.36 

Invalid handle.37 

Insufficient memory.39 

Invalid memory block address...40 

Invalid drive specified.46 

No more files.49 

Range error.64 

Internal error.65 

Invalid program load format.66 


Those bombs that appear on 
your screen are error messages 
from the 68000 micro-processor. 

Number 


Description of Bombs 

Reset: Initial PC2....1 

Bus Error.2 

Address Error.3 

Illegal Instruction.4 

Zero Divide..5 

CHK Instruction.6 

TRAPV Instruction.7 

Privilege Violation.8 

Trace.9 

Line 1010 Emulator.10 

Line 1111 Emulator.11 

[Unassigned, Reserved].12 

[Unassigned, Reserved].13 

Format Error.14 

Unintialized Interrupt Vector.15 

Unassigned, Reserved].16-23 

Spurious Interrupt.24 

Level 1 Interrupt Autovector.25 

Level 2 Interrupt Autovector.26 

Level 3 Interrupt Autovector.27 

Level 4 Interrupt Autovector.28 

Level 5 Interrupt Autovector.29 

Level 6 Interrupt Autovector.30 

Level 7 Interrupt Autovector.31 

Trap Instruction Vectors.32-47 

[Unassigned, Reserved].48-63 

User Interrupt Vectors.64-255 


Darryl May 
Tech Specialist 


Page 10 


CURRENT NOTES 


June 1988 






































































r ( NEW FEATURES, SAME OLD PRICE: $j^P ) 

SDLflPflK 


For all 520/1040 ST's and MEGA ST's 


AN INTEGRATED DESK ACCESSORY OFFERING THE FOLLOWING FEATURES: 

- PRINT SPOOLER PRINTS WHILE YOU RUN OTHER PROGRAMS 

- RESET TOLERANT RAMDISK SURVIVES PROGRAM CRASHES 

- SCREEN SAVER, ACTIVATED BY KEYBOARD, MOUSE, OR MODEM 

- SCREEN CLOCK, ULTRA SMALL, WORKS IN ALL RESOLUTIONS 

UNLIKE MOST OTHER MULTI-FUNCTION DESK ACCESSORIES, SOLAPAK V3.0 
FEATURES A NEW DYNAMIC LOADING TECHNIQUE THAT ALLOWS YOU TO LOAD 
ONLY THE FUNCTIONS THAT YOU DESIRE. 

PRINT SPOOLER: Up to 8 files queued for printing, each can have different print attributes. 
32 user defined print option buttons lets SOLAPAK support nearly every parallel printer. 

Setups for dozens of printers are provided along with a utility for making your own custom 
printer control buttons. Built-in features exist for producing top, bottom, and left margins as 
well as printing double or triple spaced text. Queue controls let you pause and continue 
printing or delete individual files from the queue. 

New PRINTERCEPTOR feature intercepts printer output from most programs and redirects 
it through the spooler. Unlike most spoolers, SOLAPAK does not require a separate spooler 
buffer. It "borrows" space from the integrated ramdisk. 

RAMDISK: Low overhead, u Itra fast, reset to lera nt, a uto loads user spec if ied f i les o n boot up. 
User selected ramdisk size, drive ID, number of files. No size limit. Hard disk compatible. 

SCREENSAVER: T urns yo ur mo n itor off d uri ng periods of keyboard a nd mo use i nactiv ity. 
Restores screen instantly at the touch of a key or mouse movement. New modem activity 
sensor makes it great for BBS's. 

+ MORE: SOLAPAK is not copy protected; will automatically install at boot; works in all screen 
resolutions; sets time/date; disables disk write verify; sets printer width; includes new screen 
clock; 30+ page manual on disk; 4 month warranty. An installation utility makes nearly every 
feature optional. SOLAPAK is written entirely in assembly language for the fastest speed and 
smallest code: Only 12Kb + ramdisk size with all options installed. As little as 1 Kb overhead 
for a ramdisk and screen saver. 

Ordering: Send $30 cash, check, or money order made payable to Tim Hunkier. 

AZ residents add sales tax. Previous SOLAPAK owners may update by sending 
original disk by standard mail along with $3 update fee. Write for more info or 
leave your name and address with our phone machine: (602) 899-6992. 


jfeii Solar Powered Software 1 807 N.evergreen,chandleraz 85224 



















































ST UPDATE ♦ Frank Sommers 


Magic Package 

Readers of the last issue of CN 
sensed our enthusiasm for Time¬ 
works Publisher ST. CN’s Publisher 
touted it in his editorial. This column 
gave it our “Hats Off Award.” As 
the last issue went to the printer, a 
couple of Hewlett-Packard Desk¬ 
Jets turned up in the hands of CN 
author’s. Jeff Greenblatt, Magic Sac 
columnist, began testing it with 
Publisher ST and various Macintosh 
drawing programs. Jim Wallace, last 
months “Whiz-ee-Wig” writer, had 
been using it with Easy Draw. Both 
authors were enthusiastic. 

Our own enthusiasm turned to 
excitement when we envisaged a 
DTP package that might be as little 
as a third the cost of Mac or IBM 
setups and of equal or higher qua¬ 
lity. How was this possible? Well, 
the current DTP for the ST costs 
about $4,500. That gives you a 
Mega ST4, an Atari SLM804 laser 
printer, and Timeworks Publisher. 
While somewhat limited in font 
selection and scaling, the quality is 
superb and it is just as fast as 
PostScript on a standard laser prin¬ 
ter. 

But at four grand plus, even 
though it is half the cost of the 
other systems, it isn’t exactly a 
magic package. Cut that four back 
to less than two and Merlin begins 
to appear on the screen. With the 
DeskJet, discounting for about 
$700, and a straight 1040 ST or a 
520 ST upgraded to 1 meg, and 
you are well under $2,000. You 
don’t need the memory of the 
Mega’s because the DeskJet func¬ 
tions just as a dot matrix printer did 
with the ST, but only with an 
astounding increase in resolution, 
from 180 dots to 300 dots per inch. 
And you can't tell the difference 
between the quality of the laser and 
the DeskJet. 

Quick arithmetic tells you that 
Hewlett-Packard, already engaged 
in a mammoth ad campaign to 
establish its printers at or near the 
top of the market, will probably sell 
200 DJ’s for every Atari laser sold. If 


the price and performance are right 
and they are, the ST should hook 
up with the DeskJet, pick up speed 
and get out there and up front with 
its rich relatives. 

A New Driver 

There is one glitch, however, 
although it might be rectifiable. 
While the Atari laser and the Mega, 
using the Mega’s memory and 
streaming the data out the DMA 
port into the waiting maw of the 
printer, can do a page in less than 
two minutes, sometimes even 30 
seconds, the DJ and Publisher ST 
take almost 10 minutes. But it is 
using a make shift driver, the one 
for the Hewlett-Packard Laser Jet 
II. A customized driver could knock 
that time down by a third. 

A quick call to Timeworks. With 
missionary zeal and smoke curling 
out of our nostrils, we thought we 
might even talk Timeworks into 
designing the driver right now! 

After several minutes of explor¬ 
ing the topic and comparing times, 
my magic package began to un¬ 
ravel. First, Timeworks licenses its 
drivers from Digital Research, pri¬ 
marily so that they will be compat¬ 
ible with the major printers on the 
market and maintainable. Unless 
Digital Research felt the project 
warranted writing a new driver, or 
unless Hewlett-Packard felt they 
had part of a winning package and 
negotiated with Digital Research or 
wrote the driver themselves, it was 
not likely to come soon. Would or 
could Timeworks energize the 
situation? Possibly, but there was 
some question of how much faster 
a page could be printed. There 
were limits to how fast you could 
turn out a high resolution bit-map¬ 
ped page through the normal ports 
on an ST or any other printer. 
Without PostScript, it was unlikely 
the time could be dramatically 
reduced. With PostScript, the Magic 
Package falls apart at the price 
seams (normally a $2,000 licensing 
fee per computer is required). 


The Dream Fades 

So for now, it seems that an 
under-$2,000 DTP rig is out, out 
that is if you want more than several 
pages produced at a sitting; say a 
newsletter or a magazine. Publisher 
ST'vs, still a standout product. Hew¬ 
lett-Packard’s DeskJet is equally 
remarkable. But our visions of HP 
putting DJ, Publisher ST anti a 1040 
ST together and showing them off 
in color in magazines and on TV as 
the Price Worthy Package of the 
DTP world fade for the moment. 

Software 

CEP—Chicago was the scene 
in late April of the Corporate Elec¬ 
tronic Publisher’s Show, where we 
suggested last month they might 
show a PostScript software clone 
for the Atari laser printer. Apparently 
they are waiting for a bigger occa¬ 
sion. No clone. 

But Publishing Partner Profes¬ 
sional was being demonstrated, 
with promises that it would be 
available in five weeks, circa 1 
June. It was described “as worth 
every penny they may ask for 
it....really astounding...”. When 
asked what the most “astounding” 
feature was, the reply, “a page of 
graphics in 45 seconds, and not 
just a pre-cooked demo page”, did 
catch our attention. Ca/amus, one 
of the other purported DTP marvels, 
was doing its pages in 13 seconds, 
but they were mostly text and it was 
clearly still very much a Beta test of 
the program, which will be marke¬ 
ted by ISD of Canada, the same 
people who bring you the spread 
sheet, ViP Professional. 

Word Perfect Corp. was also 
there in ail its finery, announcing 
that their support for the ST was 
undying and that work was going 
forward on WordPerfect version 4.2 
(indexing and graphics) and 5.0 
(more power with multi-new com¬ 
mands), but it was unlikely either 
would be out before next year. 


Page 12 


CURRENT NOTES 


June 1988 





UNIX On The ST 

Whither Paperclip —Those of 
you who waited for the 8 bit wonder 
of the word-processing world, 
PaperCUp Elite, and who agonized 
when Batteries Included was sold 
into oblivion, with rights and wareh¬ 
oused product to Electronic Arts, 
hoping PCE might still see the light 
of day, wait no more. It will, but for 
Commodore 64/128 as PaperCUp 
Publisher, and possibly in name 
only. 

A PD Mighty — Gu/am is a 
UNIX shell. It’s distinction is that 
without having full blown UNIX on 
your ST, Gu/am is as close as you 
can get. It also has a built in 
MicroEMAC. 

A Migraph DJ Driver —While 
Data Research and the others may 
not, Migraph will, or rather has, put 
out a GDOS printer driver for the 
HP DeskJet printer and Easy Draw. 
Migraph is currently selling the dri¬ 
ver bundled with its program and 
the DeskJet. The driver is also 
available separately for $49.95. Per 
Jeff Greenblatt, it is “considerably” 
faster than DJ and Publisher ST in 
turning out a page of graphics and 
pretty words. 

From 8 TO 16 —Electronic 
Arts has stepped forward to help 
8-bit’ers cross the bridge to ST 
land. 8-bit users can now upgrade 
their software to ST use by sending 
in the manual cover from the ori¬ 
ginal 8-bit software and $$ equal¬ 
ing 1/2 the cost of the 16-bit ver¬ 
sion (for more info dial 800-562- 
1112 weekdays). 

Gameware —The pot is still 
boiling with new arcade games, 
adventures, and flashy graphics for 
your ST. A true blue from yes¬ 
teryear is Battleship, the game we 
all played with scratch paper and 
pencil, firing our 10 shots at our 
opponents ships hidden in a hun¬ 
dred square grid. It then graduated 
to plastic boards and flickering 
lights, but now its here in blazing, 
blasting color and sound, and well 
done, indeed. Jump Jet gets you 
off the water and into the air. Tour¬ 
nament of Death takes you into the 
dark castle to fight your way to the 
tower room to save the fair damsel, 


and fight like a Trojan you must. 
Deflector does just what it says, 
forcing you to deflect your shots off 
mini-reflectors to hit targets. Psyg- 
nosis has tried to better its 
successful Barbarian, where you 
went through cave after descending 
cave of stunning graphics to find 
and smash “The Crystal”, with a 
new version staged in the inter¬ 
stices of a space ship. The action is 
the same and the quality of the 
graphics hard to top. Prime Time, a 
strategy game, has you running 
your own NBC television station, or 
maybe CBS, fighting the problems 
of prime time scheduling and ad 
pricing to make you Mr. Number 
One. For the cerebral, Brain Box 
and Scrup/es; for the macho, 
Leatherneck and inforcer. Music 
Studio 88 is out there for the midi 
crowd. Impossible Mission // is 
reviewed in full in this issue of CN. 

Hardware 

Comfortable? —That’s what 
you ask when you turn your head 
away from the small round window 
of your airplane on its way to San 
Francisco and look down at the 
seemingly large backlit super twist 
liquid crystal screen of your ST 
Laptop Computer. Yes, there it was, 
causing a stir of excitement at the 
Hannover fair. How soon? Before or 
after the Abaq? If we had to guess, 
we’d say before, but a guess is all it 
would be. Some of you may 
remember Tramiel’s venture into 
laptops with the Commodore 64. It 
apparently was a minor “disaster.” 
But “the numbers” now testify that 
the demand for laptops is surging. 
However, they, too, require chips, 
and we all know about that pro¬ 
blem. 

Waiting For Paradox —After 
the unfortunate release of the soft¬ 
ware emulator for the IBM, word 
began to circulate that PARADOX 
was building a box to end all boxes 
for the IBM. That was a year ago or 
, so. Now finally, for $450 the box is 
almost ready. Expensive? Yes, un¬ 
less you want to pay several hun¬ 
dred more for your IBM clone. This 
external box is designed to attach 
to your ST, accept all IBM cards 


and run all IBM software, because, 
in fact, it is one. However, given 
PARADOX’S previous performance, 
we will wait until we see this pro¬ 
duct in action before placing our 
order! 

And The Winner Is... 

Hacker and Hams —Presum¬ 
ably all of you ham radio operators 
who were seduced by computers, 
or those of you who started as 
hackers and now also QRX of an 
evening, unless you read CQ 
Magazine you may not know there 
is an Atari ham radio network out 
there. The newsletter is AD ASTRA, 
c/o Gil Frederick - VE4AG, 130 
Maureen St., Winnipeg MB, Canada 
R3K 1M2. 

Best of ‘87 —Several months 
ago, Software Publishers Associa¬ 
tion gave out its Oscar awards. The 
occasion was a black-tie Academy 
Awards-style dinner. The awards? 

Software Publishers Associa¬ 
tion’s Excellence in Software, 
based in Washington, chose to 
have its dinner at the Claremont 
Hotel in Oakland, CA. Almost half of 
the awards went not to IBM but to 
the Mac. For those of you who take 
pride in never having “touched” a 
game, note that only 33 percent 
went to games and entertainment 
software. Less than half, but still the 
lion’s share went to business soft¬ 
ware; educational programs gar¬ 
nered 20 percent of the award 
“statues.” 

That said, did the ST have any 
programs awarded that it could 
recognize? How about the “Best 
Adventure or Fantasy Role Playing 
Program”, Leisure Suit Larry from 
Sierra On-Line. (It also runs on the 
IBM, Apple II, and Macintosh; inter¬ 
estingly, the award forgot to men¬ 
tion that it runs on the ST, first and 
foremost, no.) 

Did the ST, or software that 
runs on it, hit any of the other 
awards? Best simulation, best 
action, and best technical achieve¬ 
ment went to Fa/con, a simulation 
of F-16 jet fighters from Spectrum 
Holobyte. Do you have it? The 
“Best Utility” and “Best Add-On” 
went to Focal Point, a desktop 


June 1988 


CURRENT NOTES 


Page 13 





manager plus by a computer jour¬ 
nalist, Danny Goodman. Ever heard 
of him? “Best User Interface” was 
also written by him, a HyperCard 
program for the Mac called Busi¬ 
ness C/ass. The best productivity 
program went to Macintax, obvi¬ 
ously for the Mac, but closely 
seconded, in the minds of some of 
us, if not the judges, by the ST’s 
Tax Advantage. Sadly, the ST music 
niche wasn’t recognized either. The 
best “entertainment” program 
award went to Jam Session from 
Broderbund, described as the best 
new use of a computer and “best 
sound, which turns a Mac into a 
music studio, complete with a full 
cast of musicians”. “Best of the 
Best” went to Adobe Illustrator, a 
“powerful” Mac program. 

Why the attention to all of this, 
beside the large interest in who 


won “the Academies?” More than 
half of the programs that received 
awards have ST counterparts which 
equal or surpass the winners, in our 
only “slightly prejudiced” opinion. 
But the fact is the ST and its 
programs are not main-line, not 
main-stream. We still have work to 
do, all of us, so that when we’re 
asked what computer we have, our 
explanation can be one word, 
understood, and delivered unself¬ 
consciously, with the other person 
commenting, “Oh, yeah, that’s one 
of the most powerful computers out 
there, isn’t it,” rather than having us 
have to protest that it is. 

Miscellaneous 

Hear Yee! —This is to 
announce that Atari has changed its 
name. All dealers have been 


requested to re-register under the 
new name. Seeing that Com¬ 
modore was having success with 
Commodore Business Machines, 
Atari has formed a new “conglo¬ 
merate”, ATARI COMPUTER. 

Amiga —Many of you have 
been hearing about Amiga pro¬ 
motions, seeing dealers adding the 
Amiga 500 and Amiga 2000 to their 
lines and reading in this column 
about the apparent success of their 
new marketing efforts. Whispers of 
caution are swirling about. The 
latest promotion involves user 
groups, i.e. when a member of a 
user group takes you in to buy a 
new 500 or a 2000, his group 
receives a $50 or $200 software 
credit. A nifty idea. Whispers have 
it, however, that dealers have not 
been paid for Amiga’s last pro¬ 
motion. 


THE ELECTRONIC CLINIC 

4916 DEL RAY AVE. BETHESDA, MD 20814 
LICENSED & BONDED (301) 656-7983 SINCE 1969 


Atari ST Computers and Accessories 

1040ST/520ST COLOR/MONO SYSTEMS CALL 
SF314/SF354 DISK DRIVES CALL 

SHD204 20 MEG HARD DISK DRIVE CALL 

ST POWER SUPPLIES CALL 

SMARTEAM 1200AT MODEM (HAYES comp)125.00 
THOMSON 4120 COMPOSITE, RGB(analog), 

& sep.(chroma/luma) COLOR MONITOR 285.00 

Atari 8-bit Computers & Accessories 

130 XE COMPUTER OR XE GAME SYSTEM 149.99 
XETEC GRAPHIC PRINTER INTERFACE 59.95 
800/XL/XE/1050 POWER SUPPLIES 25-30.00 


Other Products and Accessories 


MONITOR SWIVEL STANDS 22.50 

6 OUTLET SURGE PROTECTOR W/BREAKER24.50 
3.5” DISKETTE CASES, HOLDS 30 10.95 

5.25” DISKETTE CASES, HOLDS 50 9.95 

3.5” MAXELL DISKETTES 10 FOR 15.00 

5.25” NASHUA DISKETTES 10 for 7.50 

5.25” “AT” DISKETTES 10 for 26.50 

COMPUTER PAPER 9.5”X11” 32.50 


Continuous Feed, Smooth Edge, 2,500 sheets. 


Panasonic Printers 

KX-P1080III DOT MATRIX 224.95 

KX-P10911II DOT MATRIX 249.95 

We are an ATARI factory repair center. Professional 
service on most makes of disk drives, modems, printers & 
monitors. 


**** MOST SOFTWARE 15-25% OFF **** 

We stock the entire CURRENT NOTES ST 
Public Domain Library. $4.00 per disk. 

We offer complete sales and service on IBM PC’s, 
XT’s, AT’s, and Compatibles. 

PC Compatible Systems 


PC/XT 640K COMPATIBLE CALL 

80286 AT 1 MEG COMPATIBLE CALL 

80386 AT 1 MEG COMPATIBLE CALL 

MONOCHROME TTL MONITOR CALL 


Prices are subject to change. Call to inquire 
about any product listed. 


Page 14 


CURRENT NOTES 


June 1988 












XE UPDATE ♦ Len Poggiali 


Newsroom Comes to the 8-bits 

Due largely to an intensive Atari-user letter writing 
campaign, Springboard Software has decided to mar¬ 
ket an 8-bit version of its classic newsletter program, 
The Newsroom. The basic package contains 600 
pieces of clip art; a drawing program, which allows the 
user to modify existing clip art or to create his/her own; 
and a built-in word processor with five fonts. C/ip Art 
Collection (CAC) Volume 1 (all-occasion art); CAC 
Volume 2 (business art); and CAC Volume 3 (sports 
and recreation art) also are available. 

To make the entire Newsroom four-program pack¬ 
age as attractively priced as possible, until July 31 of 
this year, Springboard is selling the four together for 
$69.80 plus $5.00 shipping. For those who want to try 
out the basic program first, that may be ordered for 
$39.95, with each clip art package being an additional 
$10.00. To order, call Springboard (1-800-445-4780, 
ext. 3003), or write (Springboard Software, P.O. Box 
141079, Minneapolis, MN 55414-6079). 

Sons of Liberty Arrives 

Employing an improved version of their own 
brilliant play system (Gettysburg: The Turning Point, 
Rebel Charge at Chickamauga, Shi/oh: Grant’s Trial in 
the West and Battle of Antietarft), David Landrey and 
Chuck Kroegel have created a Revolutionary War game 
entitled Sons of Liberty for Strategic Simulations, Inc.. 
Unlike previous Civil War offerings, SOL includes not 
one but three battles from this earlier, less complex 
conflict. The very small but important Battle of Bunker 
Hill serves as an introduction to the system, while the 
larger Battles of Monmouth and Saratoga provide 
players with more complexity and greater challenges. 
As always the game may be played in Basic, 
Intermediate, or Advanced modes. 

Sons of Liberty sells for $39.95. Anyone wishing to 
order directly from SSI may do so by calling (1- 
800-443-0100, ext. 335), or by writing (1046 N. 
Rengstorff Avenue, Mountain View, CA 94043). Ship¬ 
ping is $2.00. 

More on the Atari XF551 Drive 

Released in the fourth quarter of 1987 at a retail 
price of $219.95, the Atari XF551 disk drive supports 
single-density, enhanced density, and double-density 
formats. The newest version of SpartaDOS or the new 


Atari DOS (ADOS) is required in order to use the hyper 
speed and double-density modes. Presently the XF551 
is being shipped with DOS 2.5 until ADOS can be 
completed (release date is unknown). 

Also built into this drive is the ability to transfer 
data back and forth to the computer at one-and- 
a-half times the normal rate. According to Atari, the 
XF551 will run correctly on any Atari 8-bit, including 
the game system. Apparently, however, there is a 
major flaw with the XF551—it writes to side two of 
one’s disk backwards, causing read/write incompatibi¬ 
lity problems with all other single-sided drives. As a 
result Computer Software Services (P.O. Box 17660, 
Rochester, NY 14617, (716) 467-9326) has come out 
with XF551 Enhancer ($29.95) which is advertised as 
restoring 100% compatibility between all drives while 
retaining all of the original design qualities of the 
XF551. Some installation is required. 



iff T Informer News! 


Receive a FREE complimentary 
copy of our next monthly news¬ 
paper. Reviews , News, Columns , 
as well as advice for new users. 

Send this coupon today 

Name_Phone_ 

Address_ 

City_ST_ZIP_ 

Mail to: ST Informer, Dept CN 
909 N.W. Starlite Place 
Grants Pass, OR 97526 


June 1988 


CURRENT NOTES 


Page 15 





























MAGIC SAC UPDATE ♦ Jeff Greenblatt 


This month, this column will be 
devoted to updating you on the 
latest releases of the Magic Hard 
Disk and Floppy Disk formatters. 
Additionally, if you own a Translator 
and are having trouble formatting, 
reading and/or writing Mac disks, 
the later part of this article will 
provide you with some insight as to 
what’s wrong, and what can be 
done about it. 

New Format Utilities 

If you are using HFS hard disk 
partitions or HFS floppies, by now 
you have probably discovered that 
if you copied a file with 23 charac¬ 
ters or more in its name, strange 
things begin to happen. Some of 
the symptoms are that files or fol¬ 
ders are no longer visible in “file 
dialog boxes”. This should not be 
occurring since HFS has a file 
name limit of 31 characters. 

Data Pacific has just released 
new versions of MCFORMAT (for 
floppies) and MAGICHD (for hard 
disks). These new files are available 
on GEnie in the Data Pacific Round 
Table. If you are not a member of 
this RT, just type DP at any menu 
prompt to join. The file numbers are 
182 and 183. 

The following is a message 
from Dave Small, which was posted 
on the GEnie Data Pacific RT. It 
explains what the problem was and 
how to use the new versions: 

Okay, gang, here’s the story. 

When we released the “HFS 
Formatter”, which stamps informa¬ 
tion onto the hard disk preparatory 
to you using it under HFS, we got a 
word wrong. This limited you to 23 
character file names. Worse, if you 
ran into a filename longer than 23 
characters, it damaged whatever 
directory information was next on 
the disk, starting at the 24th 
character. Typically, you’d get “File 
xxx could not be copied; cancel/ 
continue” prompts. At this point 
your hard disk is nuked; nuked is 
Dan Moore’s favorite word. 


You will find odd results. You 
can’t delete a file; “The trashcan 
cannot be emptied”. You can’t 
copy it or rename it. Basically, HFS 
is ALL messed up. Even trying to 
copy the file may crash the system, 
PARTICULARLY with an illegal in¬ 
struction error, at PC = CEEE. (Just 
look on the crash page). This 
applies to both HFS floppies and 
HFS hard disks. 

So, we’ve uploaded a new, 
BETA TEST version of MCFORMAT 
(for flops) and MAGICHD (for hard 
disks), which initializes the word 
properly. Now, you can’t just 
change it on an already formatted 
and in use partition, because 
there’s probably already damaged 
files out there. So, you need to 
re-initialize the partition with this 
new MAGICHD under GEM. You do 
not need to “reformat” the hard 
disk or the partition under GEM. 

Now, assume you want to get 
your old files from your possibly 
bad HFS partition to your new, 
good one you just MAGICHD’d. Do 
you copy them? NO!!! This is 
because just accessing a flawed 
HFS disk may crash you (the CEEE 
Illegal Instruction crash). If you 
crash in the middle of updating the 
new HFS’s directory, its history. So 
you need a safe way to transfer 
files. 

The solution is MFS. MFS is 
immune to the file name length 
problem. So, set up a 5 mbyte 
(max allowed size) MFS partition, 
copy your bad HFS partition to it. If 
you’ve got Big Problems in your 
HFS, you’ll find out now — you’ll 
crash. This is not the end of the 
world, MFS is pretty robust; just 
figure out what files are trashed in 
the bad HFS directory and don’t 
touch them again. (So, copy the 
files a few at a time, so if you crash, 
you know which ones caused it). 
Get all the files over to MFS, THEN 
you know they are good and clean. 
Then, copy them to the destination 
(good) HFS partition — possibly 
the bad one that you’ll now go and 
make good with MAGICHD? 


Be doubly cautious about HFS- 
HFS copies. As I said, a bad direc¬ 
tory in the original HFS can crash 
you, and if you crash under HFS, it 
can leave your disk a mess. Both 
Dan Moore and Mark Booth lost 
their drive’s contents this way. 

You may want to use Meg- 
A-Minute to backup your partitions 
before doing this, just in case. It’s 
reasonably speedy, (a meg per 
minute, get it?) It saves around 
800K per double sided disk, so 
roughly 1.2 disks per megabyte are 
required. 

I’m sorry for all the hassle; HFS 
is incredibly murky, the documen¬ 
tation flat lied to us in places, and 
the word that caused all this pro¬ 
blem isn’t even documented! Dan 
Moore did a heck of a job just 
getting it to 98%, and the last 2% 
was a bitch to find. But I know this 
means a lot of you will have to go 
fix your HFS partitions, and I'm 
sorry about that. 

With a fixed partition, you need 
not fear any more about the file 
name length thing. Me, I got zap¬ 
ped reading in a public domain 
library disk, and a SCSI disk for¬ 
matter off of GEnie. Twang, direc¬ 
tory damaged. I have to go back 
now and think if I even want to use 
that hard disk, or just reformat it and 
start over., really a joy, right? 
(Remember, all these bugs you see, 
we get to see too...) 

So, quick rundown: 

1. The new MAGICHD initializes a 
partition (NOT A WHOLE DISK, 
your other data is safe) with the 
correct word (we hope). 

2. Anything coming from MFS is 
safe, so copy from a possibly 
defective HFS to an MFS to “fil¬ 
ter out” bad files/folders. 

3. MCFORMAT does the same for 
floppy HFS disks. 

The Translator 

As I mentioned earlier, if you’re 
having problems with Mac format¬ 
ted disks, read on!! The following is 


Page 16 


CURRENT NOTES 


June 1988 





a series of messages from Dave 
Small which were also posted on 
the GEnie Data Pacific RT. The 
messages have been slightly edited, 
and were compiled to provide a 
single narrative on the subject: 

Now that we have the basic 
kinks ironed out of the Translator, 
we do have one continuing pro¬ 
blem. I thought I’d mention it, why it 
happens, and just generally let you 
know what’s going on. 

Take a typical Translator con¬ 
figuration, on a 1040 ST. You have 
one internal drive, the Translator, 
then an external drive on the “Drive 
Chain”. They’re all wired together; 
the same 14 pin connector goes to 
everybody. 

Now, this is fine—the Translator 
can sample signals to its heart’s 
content, and can send stuff out the 
“Write Data” line if it wants to write 
something. The drives will respond. 
No problems. 

Except.. 

The Translator is really hearty 
about writing data. I mean, when it 
writes data, it doesn’t mess around- 
-the 7416 driver yanks the write 
data line down, really hard and 
fast,—like it should! That’s the 
spec. Disk drives are a lot like 
modems—serial data devices. The 
better the data, the better every¬ 
thing works. 

So, this whole long cable to the 
external drive, and the cable to the 
internal drive, and all that wire, is 
hooked to the Translator’s Write 
Data line. When the Translator 
yanks that line from +4 volts to 
ground (in far under a microse¬ 
cond), the whole thing .. well.. from 
a non-technical view, it “rings”, just 
like banging a gong. 

Now, just HOW it rings depends 
on many things. Cable length. 
Number of disk drives hooked up- 
-remember, each drive hooked up 
means one more guy pulling the 
Write Data line UP to +4 volts. 
Whether or not the Translator is at 
the “end” of the disk drive chain, or 
in the middle. 

When the whole mess “rings”, a 
glitch can appear in the write data. It 
is a very small glitch, and only lasts 
a few billionths of a second (nano¬ 


seconds). But, if a drive is VERY 
fast on its feet and sensitive, it will 
react to that glitch, and think it’s a 
data bit. Boom goes your write 
operation—an extra bit just showed 
up. 

The symptoms are that you can 
read Mac disks all day, but can’t 
format/write to them properly. When 
you write to them, you blow away 
whatever sector you write to. 
Remember—when you stick a fresh 
Mac disk into the drive, an invisible 
file named DESKTOP is created, 
with sector writes. If you have hard¬ 
ware troubles, big problems. 

The first solution to this was to 
add a capacitor to the 7416 driver, 
to “soak up” that ringing action, if 
you will. The problem was some ST 
disk drives are running RIGHT on 
the edge, and that added capaci¬ 
tance broke them—both in ST 
mode and in Translator mode. The 
drives we see from Atari vary 
WILDLY. 

The second solution was to add 
a small resistor between the 7416 
and the write-data line in the out¬ 
side world. What this does is make 
the line not yank down quite so 
hard; the whole mess doesn’t ring 
as badly; without that gonging 
action, the drives write just fine. 
Mind you, only about 10% of drives 
we see react to the glitch; we are 
not talking about the majority of 
Translators here. 

Okay, but what if you have a 
totally shabby disk drive, that needs 
every little bit of oomph the 7416 
can put out just to write? For in¬ 
stance, a drive starts writing when 
the write voltage gets BELOW about 
0.8 volts. But I have a drive in the 
office that insists on 0.6 volts or 
less; if I put an inline resistor in, the 
7416 can’t pull down below 0.7, and 
the drive fails (3 other drives work). 
In the meantime, the ST works 
usually at 0.5 volts—this varies 
depending on the number of drives 
online. 

So, first off. If your Translator 
works, don’t mess with it. Your 
cable length may be right to not 
“twang” on writes. Your disk drives 
may righteously reject the transient 
noise of the “twang”—heck, they 
ought to, it’s only 10 nanoseconds 


and 0.2 volts big! I would be a tad 
cautious about changing your 
Translator’s position in the cable, 
though. 

If it doesn’t work, try changing 
cables, or position in the cable. In 
particular, put the Translator on the 
end of the chain, dangling off the 
last drive—it doesn’t have to be in 
the middle at all!, just anywhere on 
the chain. 

If that doesn’t work, you can 
open it up and see if there’s a really 
obvious resistor or capacitor sol¬ 
dered in on top of U2; it’s marked. If 
not, there’s a change DP can make 
to help your Translator get along 
with your disk drives. 

There isn’t, unfortunately, any 
easy solution. The true problem 
resides in the termination of the 
write data signal inside the Atari; it’s 
causing a “reflection”, or signal 
bounceback, that results in ringing. 
Changing it would require opening 
up your ST. 

I estimate this affects about 
10% of Translators. You can diag¬ 
nose it pretty easily with TRNSTEST; 
if you’ve got a drive failing, and in 
particular if another one works, then 
that’s probably it. It’s the write data 
ringing. 

My hands are tied in terms of 
going any particular direction. If I 
optimize the Translator one way, a 
certain series of Atari drives will fail. 
(Say, the voltage problem). If I 
optimize the other way, another 
series will fail (the ringing problem). 
Atari has a wide variety of com¬ 
pletely different mechanisms inside 
those plastic cases; they must buy 
at a flea market or something, wha¬ 
tever is cheap that day. 

There may well be no optimal 
solution, since we have to work with 
internal disk drives, and I can’t 
splice into the ST to properly ter¬ 
minate it. Look, this is high speed 
data—one bit every 3 to 4 micro¬ 
seconds!—and termination is 
essential. Atari is darn lucky to be 
getting away with it as is; the rise 
times are shaky and the pulldown 
pretty darn marginal. Fortunately, 
the Atari ROMS don’t detect all disk 
CRC errors, so a lot of failed writes 
go unmentioned ... weird twist of 
fate there. 


June 1988 


CURRENT NOTES 


Page 17 





The next irritating problem is 
drive RPM. When I wrote the 
Translator ROM, I assumed 300 
RPM—I mean, everyone with 3” 
drives runs them at 300 RPM. 
There’s not even a speed adjust¬ 
ment. 

This was an error. LOTS of Atari 
drives run anywhere from 290 to 
310 RPM. My code broke above 
305 RPM, and I had lots of unhappy 
people. 

The problem is like if you 
record a cassette tape slowly or 
quickly. When you play it back on 
another machine, it sounds too fast, 
or too slow. Macs are incredibly 
sensitive to this speed; just a little 
difference makes the Mac reject the 
disk. 

So, you format a disk on your 
Translator, and take it to a Mac. The 
Mac rejects it. You’ve just learned 
why. The RPM was slightly off. 

To complicate this whole mess, 
some drives spin at different 
speeds when they warm up, or 
when the disk inside them warms 
up due to friction in the diskette 
sleeve (I’m not kidding). 

The present Translator on¬ 
board ROM software, version 15, 
does not automatically correct for 
speed variation. Remember, we 
shipped this back in December, 
and I didn’t know Atari drives didn’t 
play by the RPM rules — four of 
my office drives work at 300 +/- 
1%, which is the rated speed. 

Anyway, the solution to speed 


problems has ALWAYS been, if it 
don’t work, format it on the Mac. 
Remember this is only a writing 
problem; the Translator can READ 
disks written anywhere from 250 to 
330 RPM, which is amazingly good 
tolerance. And fortunately, most 
people use Translators to import 
software. Finally, remember there 
are a lot of disk drives out there 
that are deglitched, that are at the 
right RPM, and so forth, and people 
are not having problems. The other 
ones, we hear about... 

I will probably be doing a ROM 
upgrade to the Translator to help it 
dance with disk drives that are 
off-spec. There is speculation 
about offering a flat fee to field 
upgrade the Translator for a new 
ROM, the resistor mod to the write 
data line, Gl chip instead of HP 
chip for MIDI, and so forth—all 
mods designed to let the Translator 
work with bad ST drives. Honest, 
we had no idea the sort of quality 
control that Atari was unleashing on 
the world! I’ll announce more on 
this when there’s something to 
announce; dP and I are going 
through lots of contortions right 
now. 

If you are having problems with 
Mac formatted disks and your 
Translator doesn’t have the internal 
modifications that Dave mentioned, 
contact Data Pacific for an 
upgrade. 

Now that you’ve read most of 
the story, the last sentence of 



From *M51: Word Search 


Dave’s message seems to imply 
that all is not well at Data Pacific. It 
appears that there may be a parting 
of the ways, which may impact on 
the future development of the 
Magic Sac. I’ll try to shed some light 
on the situation in the next issue of 
Current Notes. 

Oh, Yes!!! Congratulations are 
in order to Sandy and Dave Small 
on the birth of their third child, 
James M. Small, on April 19th. I 
wonder what the middle initial 
stands for? You don’t suppose? 
Nah!!! 




From # M51: Mac Word Hunt 


New Library Disks 

This month, two new disks have 
been added to the Current Notes 
Magic Sac Library. Here is the titles 
and what is on each disk: 

Disk M50, Fonts #8, contains 
10 new fonts in various point sizes. 
They are Alderney 9-48 plus Alder¬ 
ney Docs, Cairo 18, Cyrillic 12, 
Greek 10,20, Paint 18, Playbill 
12,18,24, Rehovot 10,12,20,24, 
Runes 12,24, Washington 12, 
Zodiac 18. 

Disk M51, Games #11, con¬ 
tains 6 new games to ammuse. The 
titles are Bouncing Balls, Fire Zone, 
Mac Word Hunt 2.0, OutFlank, Risk 
and WordSearch. 


Page 18 


CURRENT NOTES 


June 1988 
























































-CAL COM INC.- 

2503B Ennalls Avenue 
Wheaton, MD 20902 
(301) 933-3074 933-3574 





Visit Our New Modern Store 
Monday 10-9pm 
Tuesday-Friday 10-7pm 
Saturday 10~6pm / Sunday 12-5pm 



S 

T HARD 

WAR 

E 



520ST Monochrome 

CALL 

ComputerEyes Color 

$ 189.95 

Panasonic 1092i 

$ 329.95 

520ST RGB Color 

CALL 

SF 354 S/S Drive 

$ 149.95 

Seikosha Color Printer 

$ 399.95 

1040ST Monochrome 

CALL 

SF 314 D/S Drive 

$ 229.95 

ATAR11200 ST Modem 

$ 

89.95 

1040ST RGB Color 

CALL 

I B. 5 1/4’ Drive 

$ 239.95 

GTS-100 Drive 

$ 229.95 

Monitor Master 

$ 47.95 

ICD FA ST 20 MB 

$ 629.95 

SUPRA 2400 Modem 

$ 149.95 

Mouse Master 

$ 37.95 

SUPRA 20 MB HD 

$ 579.95 

Casio CZ-1 

$ 

649.95 

SMI24 Mono Monitor 

$ 169.95 

SUPRA 30 MB HD 

$ 749.95 

DeskCart by QMI 

$ 

89.95 

SC1224 Color Monitor 

$ 349.95 

Panasonic 1080i 

$ 199.95 

IMG Scan 

$ 

89.95 

ComputerEyes Blk/Wt 

$ 139.95 

Panasonic 1091 i 

$ 229.95 

Mouse Trak Ball 

$ 

39.95 


S 

T SOFTWAR 

E 



1ST Word Plus 

$ 79.95 

Fonts & Borders 

$ 27.95 

Personal Pascal 2.0 

$ 

79.95 

40P Deluxe (MPE) 

$ 99.95 

Fontz! 

$ 34.95 

Phantasie 1 or II 

$ 

24.95 

AB Zoo 

$ 24.95 

F.o.R.e.M. ST 

$ 44.95 

Phasar 

$ 

69.95 

Aegis Animator 

$ 64.95 

Forth/MT by Abacus 

$ 45.95 

Police Quest 

$ 

39.95 

Alien Fires 

$ 33.95 

GFA Artist 

$ 63.95 

President Elect 

$ 

21.95 

Architectural Design 

$ 27.95 

GFA Basic or Compiler 

$ 47.95 

Pro Sprite Designer 

$ 

49.95 

AssemPro 

$ 42.95 

GFA Basic Book 

$ 34.95 

Publishing Partner 

$ 

79.95 

Athena II C.A.D. 

$ 74.95 

GFA Companion 

$ 36.95 

Quantum Paint Box 

$ 

36.95 

Autodual 

$ 42.95 

Great Battles 

$ 19.95 

Scanart Library 

$ 

44.95 

Backup 

$ 34.95 

Gunship 

$ 39.95 

Scrabble 

$ 

29.95 

Bard’s Tale 

$ 36.95 

Hardball 

$ 29.95 

Shadowgate 

$ 

39.95 

Balance of Power 

$ 36.95 

HP Deskjet Driver 

$ 49.95 

Shanghai 

$ 

29.95 

Barbarian 

$ 31.95 

Hunt For Red October 

$ 39.95 

Star Fleet 1 

$ 

39.95 

Bunper Sticker Maker 

$ 44.95 

Impossible Mission 2 

$ 31.95 

Star Trek 

$ 

31.95 

Business Card Maker 

$ 42.95 

Interlink ST 

$ 34.95 

Stellar Crusade 

$ 

44.95 

Chameleon 

$ 27.95 

J-Disk (Ramdisk) 

$ 9.95 

ST Sprite Factory 

$ 

31.95 

Chartpak 

$ 34.95 

Jnxter 

$ 31.95 

ST-Term 

$ 

24.95 

Copyist by Dr.T vl.51 

$ 199.95 

Juggler II 

$ 39.95 

STuff 

$ 

29.95 

CyberControl 

$ 59.95 

KCS Version 1.6 

$ 199.95 

Tackle Box ST 

$ 

49.95 

CyberPaint 

$ 59.95 

KCS Level II 

$ 274.95 

Tenrorpods 

$ 

31.95 

CyberStudio (Cad 2.0) $ 69.95 

K-Resource by Kuma 

$ 44.95 

Test Drive 

$ 

31.95 

Dungeon Master 

$ 31.95 

K-Switch by Kuma 

$ 29.95 

Timeworks Publisher ST 

$ 

99.95 

Easy Draw /Turbochger$ 129.95 

Label Master Elite 

$ 32.95 

TuneUp! 

$ 

39.95 

Easel ST 

$ 19.95 

Mark Williams C 3.0 

$ 129.95 

Turbo ST 

$ 

49.95 

Easy Tools 

$ 44.95 

Matrix-6 by Dr. T 

$ 99.95 

Ultima IV 

$ 

44.95 

Empire 

$ 42.95 

MicroLeague Baseball 

$ 42.95 

U.M.S. 

$ 

39.95 

EZ-Score Plus 

$ 79.95 

Microsoft Write 

$ 79.95 

Uninvited 

$ 

39.95 

First Cadd 

$ 36.95 

Midi Record Studio 

$ 39.95 

Universal Item Selector 

$ 

15.95 

F-15 Strike Eagle 

$ 31.95 

MS-DOS 3.2 on 3 1/2 

$ 69.95 

War Games Const Set 

$ 

29.95 

Rash 

$ 29.95 

Obliterator 

$ 31.95 

Word Perfect 

$ 

189.95 

Font Factory Clip Art 

$ 19.95 

O.I.D.S. 

$ 31.95 

Word Writer ST 

$ 

49.95 

Font Factory Fonts 

$ 27.95 

pc-ditto 3.0 

$ 79.95 

Word Up 

$ 

69.95 


CALL THE CAL COM 


] : (301) 681-8933 







SMALL WORLD ♦ Dave Small 
Life Gets Stranger... 

(c) 1988, Dave Small 


This is going too far! 

Recently, one of Frank Som¬ 
mers’ legendary “ST Update” col¬ 
umns here in CN talked about me 
mentioning the Magic Sac in con¬ 
nection with SDI (“Star Wars”). 
Frank said, “Star Wars is a fantasy 
... fantasy.. fantasy.” 

Now, I thought that was a little 
strange. I’d made some brief joking 
mention about it in a previous 
column. But, you know those CN 
editors... have to let them have their 
little foibles. [I figured, if I were 
Frank, and was doing a column 
making predictions about Atari, I’d 
be a little irritable too., (grin).] 

So, I pick up my April “Current 
Notes”, and here’s this article by 
one Chris Anderson about SDI and 
the Magic Sac — mentioning that 
same old column I’d done. Chris, 
er, doesn’t like SDI. And is willing to 
say so. 

Now, I’ve talked with Chris 
online on GENIE, and he seems like 
a bright enough person (for 
someone who disagrees with me). 

(grin) 

But enough is enough! 

When I mentioned the Magic 
Sac so long ago, it was in a half 
joking way. I was speaking of the 
need for reliability in computers; as 
an example, I mentioned how 
embarrassing it would be to have 
the Magic Sac crash while running 
“Star Wars.” Honest, that’s ail I said 
and meant; remember, this was in 
the era when the Magic Sac still 
crashed a lot... 

Also, please bear in mind I 
spent September and October’s 
columns talking about Nikola Tesla 
and his inventions, which raise 
interesting possibilities for SDI. In 
the introduction to that column, I 
recall mentioning one of the big 
problems with SDI is how difficult 
developing anything new is, espe¬ 
cially software. 

So, please, enough is enough. 
No more letters on this; let’s let my 


poor, trampled, ravaged joke about 
SDI and Magic Sac die a quiet 
death, okay? 

Sorry. Dave:In this issue, a rebut¬ 
tal to Chris' column, about SDI being 
impossible. 

Aiieee! 

That's okay. Dave, we're all wait¬ 
ing for you to make your next joke in 
this column. Something about having 
the Contras use Magic Sacs, perhaps? 
Yuck, yuck, yuck... 

No! No. Frank! No more counter¬ 
columns about my little jokes! Please! 
I'll do anything! I’ll confess! The 
invasion begins at 0400 on Omaha 
beach! I know where Jimmy Hoffa is 
buried! 

[An evil chuckle is heard emerging 
from Frank's house] Were waiting, 
Dave... 

Moving Right Along ... 

Actually, this whole thing 
reminds me a lot of the frequent 
misunderstandings that people get 
into online. It reminds me a great 
deal of the Plato online network I 
was on in 1978. 

Dave, that's the weakest transition 
from an editorial comment to the 
“meat” of your column we’ve heard 
yet. I mean, Hackercon to SDI was 
thin, but this is really squeaking by. 

Look, I’ll tie it in more strongly a 
little later. Be patient, okay? 

Oh, excuse me. Go right ahead, 
[chuckle] 

Plato 

Plato was an online network run 
by Control Data Corporation, a.k.a. 
CDC. At the peak of its era, there 
were many large mainframes in 
Minnesota connected by phone line 
to thousands of users. 


If this sounds like CompuServe 
or GEnie today, you’re right on 
track. 

(Plato has gradually faded out; I 
believe it is still running in a few 
places, but nothing like it was in 
1978). 

Plato began life as an “educa¬ 
tional computing” system. It fea¬ 
tured a fine, 512 x 512 bitmap 
screen—a resolution close to the 
current ST, but achieved in the late 
1960’s!—a language called “Tutor”, 
and all sorts of “Courseware”- 
-Plato Lessons to educate you on 
nearly anything. There was a neat 
lesson in flying a 747,1 remember. 

There were many fantastic 
games there as well. There were 
excellent role playing games. 
People got rich moving these 
games to microcomputers, when 
micros came out! (Witness “Wizar¬ 
dry”—Robert Woodhead, an author 
of it, was a Plato-ite that had 
written several Plato RPG’s before.) 
There was an airtight simulator, very 
much like Air Warrior on GEnie. 

Not seen yet, though, is the 
multi-player Star Trek game called 
Empire, surely the greatest burner 
of Plato CPU hours ever written. I 
became an Empire addict, logging 
some 2,000 hours on it during 
college—and ending up co-com- 
manding the “Federation” team on 
it. Ah, for the college days spent 
locked in a small room, battling up 
to 31 other players... 

Now along with all these games 
were a fascinating set of “notes- 
files”, where people could talk 
about various subjects. These were 
lots like the CompuServe Forums or 
GEnie RoundTables. Naturally, the 
busiest notesfiles concerned politi¬ 
cal subjects. 

This was my first introduction to 
serious debating with other people. 

And wow, were there some 
serious fights in the Plato notesfiles. 
Take the worst “flames” (as they 
are called now) from Usenet, CIS, 


Page 20 


CURRENT NOTES 


June 1988 











Genie, or whereever, and they’re 
close to Plato notesfiles. 

I was a sophomore in college 
when I began on Plato. Many other 
colleges were tied into Plato. I’m 
sure it’ll surprise you to find out that 
there was much ... well ... shall we 
say, political opinion on the left in 
these Plato notesfiles. I remember 
Greg, for instance, up at Evergreen 
State College, explaining how he 
was a Trotsky-ite, and didn’t 
approve of only the current imple¬ 
mentation of Marxism. 

The Plato systems staff partici¬ 
pated as well, which was quite 
dangerous—if you disagreed with 
them anyway. I had some bad 
experiences here, and learned to 
shut up sometimes. This ability has 
often stood me in good stead, 
particularly when talking with Apple 
employees (excuse me). 

Well, back in 1978, I thought 
this was great. Politics! I showed up 
in my usual, subtle-as-a-hand- 
grenade way, and began talking. 

Big mistake. 

My political opinions were 
characterized, I recall, as to the right 
of the Nazi’s; Greg wanted to know 
if all my opinions were straight from 
Maggie Thatcher. And so on and so 
on and so on ... gun control ... day 
care ... abortion ... you name it. 
Major political warfare carried out on 
a computer. 

And I learned two extremely 
important lessons from all this. 

First, the “debating society” is 
alive and well in the computer 
networks. It’s like the opinion-edi¬ 
torial columns in your daily paper, 
but with a computer, anyone can 
join in (and does), and be heard 
instantly. People who think political 
debates are dry and dull should try 
one on a local computer system. 

Second (and most importantly): 
These people I was fighting with 
were not the idiots I thought they 
were. 

I had never understood much of 
what I’d heard politically that didn’t 
agree with my views. For the 
longest time, I thought that people 
who believed otherwise were, well, 
complete idiots. (Let’s be tactful, 
right?) 

But the people I would debate 


with and challenge ... had perfectly 
reasonable ideas too. Given the 
basic things they believed in, these 
opinions and ideas were absolutely 
consistent. Many were the times 
this was pointed out to me. 

I could rattle off a list of impres¬ 
sive sources for my information. 
Experts. Quotable quotes. William F. 
Buckley. Robert K. Brown. And so 
on. 

And they could too. Of course, 
it would be people from the more 
liberal side, but experts are experts. 

Given the basic “world view” of 
those sources, the opinions were 
inevitable. They could be just as 
solid appearing as my opinions 
were; I could see the logic and 
reason behind their opinions. 


... For the longest time, 
I thought that people 
who believed otherwise 
were, well, complete 
idiots.... 


After a while, I came to see that 
the “world view” was what mattered 
the most, and that given the wide 
variety of “experts” and “sources” 
on any subject, you could find an 
expert to back up any opinion. 

The Plato people took delight in 
quoting experts that agreed with 
them, as I did. But after awhile I 
began to see this was nonsense. 

At this point, I mellowed out 
considerably. These people weren’t 
idiots; their basic values were dif¬ 
ferent than mine. The opinions they 
built up out of their basic values 
were well reasoned, logical, and 
consistent. 

It’s all very reminiscent of Niko¬ 
lai Lobachevsky, who came up with 
“non Euclidean geometry”. Geo¬ 
metry begins with a few basic, 
unprovable foundations. For in¬ 
stance, parallel lines do not inter¬ 
sect. From those definitions, a 
whole geometry is built, and it is 
self-consistent. 

Lobachevsky’s work was non 
Euclidean. He’d start right out by 


saying, “parallel lines intersect”- 
-and the geometry he would build 
up was entirely self-consistent. 
Provably correct, from within that 
geometry. I know it sounds strange, 
but it works. 

While I felt that many of the 
Plato people’s opinions were 
wrong, there was no way to prove it 
through attacking their self-consis¬ 
tency (or just plain attacking them). 
As does a non-Euclidean geome¬ 
try, their opinions held up, given the 
basic assumptions. 

Finally, I also saw that people’s 
world-views, those basic assump¬ 
tions, were inherently unprovable. 
What did they know or I know, for 
instance, about Afghanistan? What 
we’d read in the papers that day? 
Yep, there’s a really consistent, 
accurate source. (That was sar¬ 
casm). Have I ever been there? 
Seen it with my own eyes? Nope. 
Neither had they. Yet I remember 
several good fights about if the 
Soviets should have troops in there, 
“invading” (me) or “supporting the 
native government against rebels” 
(them). 

There is much that you and I 
“know” about the world that we 
don’t really know. We’ve not seen it 
with our own eyes. Yet we assume 
it’s true. (This is also a basic 
propaganda tool. Change the 
world-view, change the way people 
think, automatically. Very useful 
stuff.) 

In time, I grew to be friends with 
... gasp! ... the people I had dis¬ 
agreed with so strongly. I grew to 
value their reasoning ability, and like 
them as people. Their opinions ... 
well, we didn’t talk about those. 
(Although I can recall switching 
political roles one April Fool’s Day 
with Greg, and horrifying nearly an 
entire network.) 

So, nowadays I see the same 
battles erupting on CompuServe 
and Genie and Usenet and... 
There’s people who act much the 
same way I did in 1978, assuming 
that people who disagree with them 
are “idiots.” Take for instance the 
Atari 16-bit forum on CompuServe; 
here, a note sprung up about ban¬ 
kers being “leeches” that “feed off 
the poor.” Many, many political 


June 1988 


CURRENT NOTES 


Page 21 









replies followed. Regrettably, one of 
the CompuServe part-time Sysops 
is a banker. (I thought he showed 
remarkable restraint in staying out 
of fight.) 

They’re going the same way 
Plato did. Some are learning to 
understand; some never will; some 
know better than to get into a fight 
about such silliness. 

I am going to be very interested 
to see if the next development of 
Plato occurs on the big networks- 
-that’s a computer romance. 
Already I’ve seen signs that it does 
happen over on GEnie. But, per¬ 
haps, more on this in another col¬ 
umn. 

Computer political (and other) 
forums. Interesting stuff. 

The bad thing about them is the 
personal nature of the attacks, the 
intolerance you’ll run into. Pop your 
head up in the Amiga forum and 
talk about the Atari ST. Then duck! 
There will be incoming fire. 

The good thing about all this is 
it gives other people a chance to 
intensely debate and question other 
people’s opinions. You really don’t 
get this chance in the outside world 
much anymore. And I think many 
people will conclude, as I did, that 
people that disagree with me aren’t 
really idiots; they are just probably 
people with different basic feelings 
about the world. 

Okay, Editor, ready for me to tie 
this all up with the introduction? 

This I got to see. 

So we come to Frank and 
Chris’ columns in Current Notes ; 
about SDI. They’re not real wild 
about it. I happen to support SDI. 

But, I just can’t bring myself to 
instantly condemn either of them as 
“idiots” because they don’t agree 
with me. That’s the effect the Plato 
experience had on me. Chris can 
quote many people, and did in his 
article, that seem like “good 
sources.” I’m sure the rebuttal to 
Chris’ column will quote other 
“experts” too. 

But heck, I really don’t know 
who’s right. Gen. Graham says he 


can have a working basic system in 
four years, if he’s turned loose to do 
it now. The anti-SDI folks say it’s 
impossible, forever. Some of them 
are competent people who deal 
with missiles daily. How should I 
know who’s right? 

At this point, the Plato teach¬ 
ings come back to me, and I realize, 
I’ve happened to pick the “experts” 
whose world view agrees with mine 
as my “experts”, as people to 
believe in. Chris, he’s picked 
someone else. That doesn’t mean 
his reasoning, given those experts, 
is any different. 

(And which is why me writing a 
column in disagreement is com¬ 
pletely futile.) 


... Be careful online, if 
you ’re being sarcastic, 
you have to say so, or 
many people won’t 
realize it... 


Several things here: 

♦ For those of you who haven’t got 
a modem, spend the fifty or a 
hundred dollars to get one. 
Check out your local BBS’s; 
check out the big nationwide 
networks. There’s something 
happening there you’re missing 
out on! The “latest” ST news is 
often the least interesting thing 
happening. 

♦ It is very valuable to learn just 
how much you don’t know about 
the world and about what’s going 
on. Of course, getting politically 
shredded is sort of a hard way to 
learn it. 

♦ Be very careful online, as I’m try¬ 
ing to be here. If you’re being 
sarcastic, or saying something in 
fun, you have to say so, or many 
people won’t realize it. Remem¬ 
ber, the only thing that comes 
across are characters; your tone 
of voice, facial expression, body 


language, and everything else 
are lost. You’ve got to be careful 
to include them if needed, lest 
you be misunderstood. 

♦ It is always best to leave yourself 
a way out. Many are the times 
I’ve seen people paint them¬ 
selves into corners online. 
(Another singularly bad move is 
to irritate the Sysops, who run 
the whole place). It is best to 
(grin), (shrug), and move on. This 
is why I keep the Magic Sac 
areas online so deliberately light 
hearted; it is hard for people to 
go into an irritated yowl when 
everyone around them is having 
fun. With a controversial product, 
such as Magic Sac, this is 
essential. 

♦ Again, if you’ve not got onto the 
nationwide networks — do. If 
nothing else, check out the 
weekly Wednesday night Atari 
RoundTable Real Time Con¬ 
ference discussion on GEnie; 
there, 20-40 people get together 
and talk about the ST, all in the 
same place. Sometimes really 
interesting things happen, like 
when one of the Tramiels shows 
up to chat. I hope this column’s 
been interesting for you, and if it 
leads you online, I hope it gives 
you a few basic starting out rules 
to work with. It really is worth¬ 
while; there’s more going on 
around you, on the networks, 
than you can possibly know 
about unless you’re there. 

As usual, if you’d care to write, 
I’m available at: 

BIX: dsmall 
CIS: 76606,666 
GEnie: DAVESMALL 
Usenet: hplabs!well! dsmall 

Or, if you prefer more primitive 
communication (stone knives and 
bearskins?): 

9678-B E. Arapahoe Rd, #133, 
Englewood, CO 80112. 


Page 22 


CURRENT NOTES 


June 1988 











M 

u 

O 





m 



o o o o 

o o o 

o o o o 

o o o o o 

J2 8 

o o o o 

o o o 

o o o o 

o o o o o 

•8 i 

ri c4 r4 o 

r4 r4 r4 

CN c4 O CN| 

c4 rj r4 r4 cs 

E ^ 

CO CO CO t* 

CO CO CO 

CO CO ^ CO 

CO CO CO CO CO 

3 

£ iJ 


m 

© 

m 

© 

h 

ca 

W 


£ 

o 

55 


IH 
0> 

U 4J 

HH 4) N (2 2 

> Ǥ Q e 

d 2<« a- 15 

H c T3 £ (50 

U 6 5 ’O -g 

< cl Pm w iS 


§ 

HH 

PQ 

S 

HH 

Ph 


.a 

CO 

£ 

<y 

O 




O. 

5 I 
*§d 
■§|5 

pa (4 pa 


O 

O 

Q 

hJ 

O 

O 

c/5 


CS 

V 

•rH 

8 

a 

<3 


l4 

s « 

■2 Sr 

e 

H c 

(50 o 

a 


« K C 
5 clz2 o 
2 « o -g 
H U <8 


(J » 

£ •£ s -3 

g «5'2 -^o 

^ j3 r g-3 g «, 

£ a g o c 

a o*J2 v S 

•2 « 
C/5 C/5 <1 M C/5 


§Je 


w <D 

~ 8 ■§ ^ 


i it j 
1 g>" | B.-S 'f 
8||J SSl?" 

S r 8 a I •§ i.* 5 S 

•glsi{ Ill’ll 

8«S 5 oJel-fT 

n rX 5? •§ R « 



00000li5U5000000000000000000000000000m00 
©©©©ooNONOooooooooooooomooooooooininoinoNOO 
d^^^in^K^dtsrflfi^ddtsNH^^d^M' NNTjiHtsifi6t0c0^f<i^d6 


•»n 

«r1 

r~) 

°ir1 

44 

D 


H 

4J H W5 
•h C/5 j*. 

> h y h! 
& <u w 

a 


CD 

3 


W5C/5 
u H 

13 ^ 

-- 8 

2 *g «« fi 
.a o t: •£ * 

X ? D </> Oi 


« £ 


r ^ 

H Oh 

C/5 

** 

x k 

.a D 

3<! 

3ft 
Oh O 


O m 

_o _5> C 


PQ ^ q 

Cl, CL, u • 

.a .a .a g g * 

*4-* CD CD 5 3 fTr\ 

< PQ PQ U U O « 

<3 < < < c <3 0 

Qh (X< Mh Qh Mh ^ 

UUUOOOUS c^U U £ £ £ 



PQ 

CD 


« 3 N N N 
PL4 Ph W W < 


H 

0) 0> _ 
f-h J-Qr, 

KfN ^ **1 H ^ ^ ^ 

cu 

j 5 ^ jg .jj ^ u g 

HHUcPWPPh 


, —t Jj D H! 

0^ CX. ^ ^ tn O 


CO 


o 

o 

o 

o 

o 

o 

o 

o 

o 

o 

o 

O 

o 

o 

O 

o 

o 

o 

o 

o 

O 

O 

o 

o 

o 

o 

o 

O 

O 

o 

in 

O 

o 

o 

o 

o 

o 

o 

o 

o 

o 

o 

ITi 

in 

o 

o 

o 

o 

o 

o 

in 

o 

o 

O 

O 

o 

tn 

o 

o 

o 

o 

o 

o 

Os 

o 

o 

Is 

00 

IS 

o 

tN* 

IS 

Is* 

is’ 

IS* 

CO 

CO 

IS 

IS* 

d 

IS* 

CM* 

CM* 

CO 

Is 

in 

in 

O 

in 

CO 

IS 


rfH 

7t 


Is’ 

ON 

o 

in 

cs 

rH 

CN| 

CO 

CM 

CM 

CM 

CM 

CM 

CO 

CO 

CM 

CM 

CM 

CM 



CO 

CM 

rH 

rH 

CO 

CO 

CO 

CM 

CM 

CM 

CM 

CM 

CM 

rH 

CO 

CM 



'p 

53 

o 


a 

o 

u 

u 


•M P 
M 


Hi 


Hi _ 

v2 ? iw c . 

3 5 T3 5 *-! 
o « 2 a! D « o 
psj O hJ P «5 53 0 



CD 

s § 


H c/5 

u 

w n H 

W) o ^ 
fi cfi a 


rs 

s 


s 


TJ 


> TJ 

.a 


a 

T3 


^ ^ nl 43 o 

& * pp^ o u -J 

sl * -!|||-a-2| s?2Po s S 


Hi 
4J 

i-H 

X» CD 

S « s g 

^ hi v> > 

O U W * ‘fi 

05 05 Jd i! Q 

« « o « *> 


«3 


8 G 

T3 O 
2 4> 
(50 $P 

13 1 

53 Q 


o 

in 

in 

o o 

in 

in o 

in 

ON 

ON 

o o 

ON 

ON O 

CO 

d 

ON 

in is 

is* 

rH IS 

CO 

CM 

IS 

CO CM 


rH CO 


5 .§ 

.2 w 

U ^ 

<u m 

CHfO 

^ S 

o 

U 

Hi 

0> 

•iH 

a 

CS 

EC 


H ® 
mKU 

5 H ps{ 

2 ^ 

a 3 « 

^5 ^ 5 5 p* pj 

O Ph U C/5 H H C/5 


0> 

TJ 

CD 

0 

- N 

SBU 

<u ^ 

uu - 



in in id id 
^ Cn CXn Cn 

On 0> On On 


CD 

. s 

4h « 

Ph Q 

fi 

0» 


CD 

CD 

o; 

J 

D 


pa ^ 5 S £ 

g-g3.§! 

Ic^cS^i 


in o m in in o 

ON O On ON ON O 
h ni h h ri ni 

CO CO CO CO fO CO 


CO 

w 

Ed | 
Pi 

W 73 

'Z. 2 

H 3 
o J 
« 


o 


CD 

HH Hi ^ 

!-• «j S C 

8 S go 

a ^ <s 3 •js 

S gO«.a m 

4h f£h S *2 

iS.81 . S 

3uuz £f 







































_ CD REPORT ♦ Linda Helgerson _ 

A Look at the Market for CD-ROM Drives 


The success of a computer 
peripheral is most often measured 
in terms of number of units sold 
(installed base) combined with pro¬ 
jections of future annual sales. This 
method of analysis works for most 
computer peripherals. A printer’s a 
printer; a modem is a modem; sales 
of 80 megabyte hard disk drives 
may represent an upgrade. One 
can purchase any of these items, 
attach them to a computer, and 
that’s that. Penetration or percent of 
market share of a certain peripheral 
can then be measured in relation to 
the installed base of computers and 
the number of units sold by each 
manufacturer. 

In theory, the same technique 
could be applied to measuring the 
degree of success of CD-ROM 
drives. In practice, however, it does 
not work quite that way. The single 
difference is that without appro¬ 
priate software—CD-ROM titles— 
a CD-ROM drive is useless. 
Another way of saying the same 
thing is, CD-ROM drives are not 
sold unless there are suitable appli¬ 
cations. The difference between 
sales of CD-ROM drives and other 
microcomputer peripherals is the 
dependency on available applica¬ 
tions. In fact, there is little dif¬ 
ference between the early years of 
microcomputers sales and the need 
for a VisiCalc-type application and 
the events surrounding sales of 
CD-ROM drives during the 1985-88 
time frame. 

The overall growth of the CD- 
ROM industry—as measured in 
number of CD-ROM units sold— 
was certainly way below expec¬ 
tations by the end of 1987. For the 
United States, the conservative 
estimate is 30,000 drives sold, plus 
or minus two to three thousand 
units. More optimistic bean coun¬ 
ters estimate fifty, maybe sixty 
thousand, but no more. This varies 
widely from most all forecasts. 

Is CD-ROM doomed? Is CD- 
ROM yet another flash in the optical 
technology pan? Has the “VisiCalc” 
for CD-ROM arrived? The answer 
to all three questions is, without a 
doubt, “No”. 

The estimated number of drives 
sales in 1988, and probably for at 


least one year after that, will be 
totally dependent on whether or 
not there are applications ready 
and shipping. The difference bet¬ 
ween the 1987 through 1989 period 
and the 1990 and beyond period is 
the nature of the applications. 
Through 1989, applications will be 
targeted to vertical markets. At 
about the 1990 point, we will see 
broad, horizontal applications for 
CD-ROM, and AT THAT POINT, we 
can apply the traditional bean 
counting approach to analyzing 
success of the CD-ROM peripheral 
as measured in number of units 
sold. 


...drive sales in 1988 will 
be totally dependent on 
whether or not there are 
applications ready and 
shipping... 


In the meantime, how do we 
determine whether or not there is a 
significant penetration of drives into 
those vertical markets that have 
“found” CD-ROM. A measure is, of 
course, the number ofdrives sold 
per market, which is closely guar¬ 
ded information. Another is the rate 
of adoption of CD-ROM products 
and services by a vertical market 
following a product announcement. 

By the end of 1987, there were 
essentially three vertical markets for 
CD-ROM of any significance— 
library, financial, and medical. The 
first commercially available title in 
January 1985 included Library of 
Congress bibliographic records and 
was directed to the behind-the- 
scenes cataloging section of the 
library. This same product is now 
used in at least 2,OCX) libraries, and 
many other competitive products 
are enjoying similar success. From 
there, the reference section of the 
library was addressed with CD- 
ROM discs containing indexes, 
abstracts, and full-text of reference 
works used most often in the libr¬ 
ary’s reference section. One vendor 
supplying a reference product on 
CD-ROM achieved 167% of sales 
within the first year. At the last 


American Library Association con¬ 
ference, there were more than sixty 
vendors with reference products. In 
early 1986, the first CD-ROM based 
public access catalog (PACs, for¬ 
merly card catalog) was introduced. 
By mid-1987, seven vendors had 
such systems, the majority of which 
are overwhelmed by requests for 
proposals. Now, the states of 
Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, Maine, 
Virginia and others are installing 
such systems in libraries through¬ 
out their state. CD-ROM drives are 
now moving into every niche of the 
library market, and in turn, the 
penetration sales of CD-ROM 
drives is quite high for this market. 

One survey of librarians indica¬ 
ted that 90% of the libraries in the 
U.S. would have at least one CD- 
ROM drive by the end of 1988. At 
last count, this number was 
approximately 40,000. Given the 
addition of ten CD-ROM PACs and 
five reference workstations, for in¬ 
stance, this number grows easily to 
more than 1/2 million drives by 
1990 for the library market alone. 

Similar scenarios are occurring 
for the medical and the financial 
markets, and will begin for the 
legal, travel & leisure, defense, 
architect & construction industry, 
and other vertical markets through¬ 
out 1988-89. 

Any estimate of annual sales of 
CD-ROM drives for these years will 
then be totally dependent upon 
whether or not the applications get 
to market, are priced reasonably, 
and the information on the CD- 
ROM disc is considered valuable to 
purchasers. Conservative estimates 
for 1988 are sales of 90,000 units in 
the United States, plus or minus 
10-15,000. For 1989, the conserva¬ 
tive estimate is 150,000. These 
numbers reflect natural growth, not 
growth based upon the instant 
adoption of CD-ROM drives by one 
or more markets. 

The bottom line is this. To 
estimate CD-ROM sales in this 
decade, one must know the degree 
to which any single vertical market 
suffers presently from the ineffi¬ 
ciencies and costs of acquiring and 
using data distributed on paper, 
microfiche or via online services, 


Page 24 


CURRENT NOTES 


June 1988 








the tendencies of vendors supply¬ 
ing informationto those markets to 
move to CD-ROM as an informa¬ 
tion distribution device, and how 
soon such products will be shipped. 

There are many exciting CD- 
ROM applications under develop¬ 
ment and ready for shipping in 
1988. West Publishing has announ¬ 
ced its entry into distributing all 
necessary legal documents on CD- 
ROM. McGraw-Hill’s Information 
Systems Division will introduce its 
Electronic Sweet’s indexing system 
on CD-ROM to accompany the 
hardcopy edition that is normally 
distributed to 34,000 architects and 
construction engineers. Under the 
CALS (Computer-Aided Logistics 
Support) initiative, all branches of 
the military have been ordered to 
move all paperwork to electronic 
form, and CD-ROM is the obvious 
dissemination mechanism. Many 
CD-ROM projects have already 
begun in the Army, Navy and Air 
Force. 

Computer manufacturers 
should not be overlooked. All the 
majors have announced some effort 
dealing with CD-ROM. Apple Com¬ 


puter will begin shipping its new 
CD-ROM drive, the AppleCD SC, 
this spring. Digital Equipment Cor¬ 
poration uses CD-ROM drives as 
file servers for distribution of in- 
house, stable information and for 
delivering operating system and 
networking software to customers. 
Hewlett-Packard will begin the 
delivery of all user support informa¬ 
tion and later all documentation on 
CD-ROM to purchasers of HP’s 


... Buyers—as well as 
dealers and distributors- 
-need to experience 
what CD-ROM is all 
about... 


Vectra or MS-DOS compatible 
equipment. Tandy Corporation 
announced in March the sales and 
marketing of Hitachi’s 1503 SUY 
drive via its express ordering 
mechanism. Atari Corporation has 
announced a drive, ready for ship¬ 
ment in mid-Summer. Even IBM 
openly demonstrates prototype 


applications on CD-ROM at trade 
shows. 

In the short history of CD-ROM, 
it is easy to see the pattern. First, a 
single highly visible product is in¬ 
troduced at a trade show. One year 
later, there are twenty products. 
CD-ROM drives are then sold along 
with these applications to seed the 
market or purchased from other 
sources with an accompanying 
horizontal-type product. 

The message to retail dealers 
and distributors is clear. Off-the- 
shelf sales are not yet feasible. 
Supplying drives to specific markets 
in tandem with applications is. In 
the meantime, becoming familiar 
with CD-ROM, having a unit with an 
appropriate demonstration of a 
relevant application in full public 
view, is mandatory. Buyers—as 
well as dealers and distributors— 
need to experience what CD-ROM 
is all about. A database on CD- 
ROM represents mainframe storage 
on a microcomputer. This concept 
is meaningless without an appro¬ 
priate application. If an application 
is appropriate to a customer, the 
sale of the CD-ROM drive follows. 


Atari ST Public Domain Disks • Just $2.95 

Here's just a few of our many disks to choose from. You can assume all disks are single sided (average of 250K per disk) 
and work with both color and monochrome 520 or 1040 ST’s unless noted as follows: 

COLOR=Color only MONO=Monochrome only DBL=Double sided disk MEG=Megabyte of RAM required 
108 Ramdisks and Print Spoolers (many types of each). Also a beginner's guide to using ramdisks. Our most popular disk. 

134 ST Writer Elite 2.3 - very popular and easy to use word processor (optional GEM/mouse interface). 

135 A fantastic clone of the game Monopoly - you’ll love the graphics. One human plays 1-3 computer opponents (COLOR). 
138 Wheel-of-Fortune 2.0 Game - a favorite! Includes programs to create/modify your own puzzles (COLOR). 

144 Great Chess game from Germany (Krabat). Very easy to play, but tough to win against the computer (color or mono). 

155 DGDB - "The Great German Videogame" - An excellent game with sharp graphics (Joystick; COLOR). 

162 Stoneage Deluxe - A fantastic Boulderdash-type game. Can design your own screens. (Joystick; COLOR). 

192 Picture Utilities #2 - Picswitch 0.7 (convert pics between formats and color/mono), drawing programs, much more!!! 

214 Kids #3 - Great kids programs. Barnyard (like Concentration), Etch-a-Sketch, Drawpad, ABC's. (COLOR). 

223 Speech #1 - Hear your ST speak what you type, or even read your own text files out loud. Other speech examples... 

237 A fantastic C Compiler by Mark Johnson. Includes source code for a spreadsheet and some Unix tools. 

252 Assembly Programming #1 - Two working 68000 assemblers, a disassembler, a monitor program, sample ASM source. 

255 Business - Visicalc Spreadsheet clone with doc, plus over 100 business form letters. Very popular disk! 

292 Misc. Utilities #8 - Fantastic monitor program TEMPLMON (edits, disassembles, prints,...). Also format, copy, etc. 

294 DeskPac Plus - An powerful all-in-one desk acc: alarm clock, notebook, phonebook, programmable calculator, and more. 

300 Monochrome programs - fantastic demo, "QiX"-like game. Also MONOWARE - lets color ST emulate monochrome system! 

301 Uniterm 2.0 - Tremendous modem program! GEM interface, emulates MANY terminals, macros, up/download, doc. 

315 Two database programs (First Base & Free Base); a nice working PD spreadsheet; sample Will; mortgage calculator,... 
334 JILCAD 2D - A fully working shareware CAD program! Tons of features! Somewhat useable in color. (DBL/MEG/MONO) 

336 AIM 2.3 - Digital Image Processor - fantastic! See how pros alter and improve digitized pictures (MEG). 

337 Cyberscape Animation. The BEST ANIMATION (w/sound, too) for the ST. See a disk come alive! (DBL/MEG/COLOR). 
359 Music Studio #6 - Many songs, plus several programs to play them over your ST's speakers or on a Midi system. 

P01 PC Ditto Info - Numerous valuable tips and hints. Sample AUTOEXEC.BAT and CONFIG.SYS files. Requires PC Ditto. 
CAT Catalog disk. Describes all our 300-plus PD disks (including ones for Magic Sac and PC Ditto). Over 90 pages of listings! 
Plus, if you mention this magazine we'll include with your catalog a $2 credit coupon good toward your next order. 

••• FREE SHIPPING (U.S. and Canada) - Check or Money Order (U.S. funds only) - $10 Minimum Order (except for Catalog). ••• 

AccuSoft • P.O. Box 02214 • Columbus, OH 43202 


June 1988 


CURRENT NOTES 


Page 25 
















ATARI SCUTTLEBITS ♦ Bob Kelly 


USER GROUPS 


It was a cold, damp night in 
Sunnyvale. The unusual weather had 
moved down from San Francisco, 
adding to the discomfort of the men 
sitting in the sumptuous living room. In 
one corner was Jack Tramiel, staring 
out the window as the ocean waves 
pounded against the beach. 

Sitting close to Tramiel, on a floor 
cushion not 10 feet away was Neil 
Harris with a copy of the Wall Street 
Journal in his lap. The headlines read 
“Tramiel buys Atari from Warner’'. 
Harris spoke rapidly in the fashion of a 
young reporter, “Gee whiz boss, we 
sure got some good press!" 

Jack Tramiel turned momentarily, 
smiled, nodded and continued looking 
out the window engrossed in his 
thoughts. Surely his thoughts were on 
the risk to his fortune now that he had 
bought Atari? How was he going to 
keep this company going until the still 
secret 16 bit line was out next year? 
Everything he had worked for was at 
stake but nothing appeared right at the 
moment. 

Across the room sat Sig Hartmann 
who had been with Jack Tramiel a 
long time. He was Vice President at 
Commodore and who knows what else 
where else. Sig put down his copy of 
Der Spiegel and said, “Jack, we're 
planning to cut costs as you ordered. 
Corporate employment will be reduced 
to only a few hundred people. Of 
course, a reduction in personnel creates 
other problems. Namely, who is to 
service the products we sell? The 


planned cutbacks eliminate what little 
customer support Warner provided to 
Atari owners. Further, there is no 
dealer network." 

Going over to his favorite easy 
chair, Jack Tramiel suggested it would 
be nice if someone could get some 
sandwiches as he had not eaten since 
writing the check. Harris immediately- 
volunteered, took the order and walked 
out the door toward the waiting limo 
headed for Metropolis and the sub shop. 

Back in the house, Sig was alone 
with Jack and son Sam Tramiel. 
Nothing much was said for 20 minutes 
or so. Suddenly, an idea came to Sig. 
He broke the silence, “One way we 
can keep people buying Atari products 
even though we have no customer 
service network is to utilize the exist¬ 
ing Atari user groups." 

Jack turned in his chair, dropping 
hot cigar ashes on his pants. Sig went 
on ignoring Jack's smoldering trousers, 
“User groups have been galvanized 
through opposition to policies adopted 
by Warner. They have repeatedly 
stressed the versatility and power of 
the 8-bit computer with the public. We 
must sell the 8-bit inventory inherited 
from Warner to stay alive. Further, by 
gaining their support, we can move 
away from just a game machine com¬ 
pany in the public’s mind." 

Jack Tramiel continued to stare 
out the window but now thoughts 
raced through his mind. After about 
two minutes, he bolted from the chair 
dropping his cigar in his bourbon and 


water. He was belly to belly with Sig 
and shouting, “Yes, the user groups 
can help us sell the inventory of 8-bit 
products while Shiv has time to bring 
on the new 16-bit ST computer line. In 
fact, even after we start selling the 16- 
bit computers in the U.S., we can tell 
everyone to go to the local user group 
for support". 

Jack was now into it. He turned 
and said to number one son, “This 
arrangement will reduce our financial 
requirement to service the products we 
sell while at the same time advertising 
how user groups are providing enhan¬ 
ced customer support to the new buyer. 
It's free except for some minimal outlay 
for a user group representative here at 
corporate headquarters. It will and 
must work!" 

Both men congratulated each 
other on the beauty of such a system. 
It was all so simple—service the public 
through involving the public. This was 
the answer to the liquidity trap. A 
greater share of Atari’s financial 
resources could now be allocated to 
develop the next generation of 16-bit 
computers. 

Sam Tramiel had been quiet up to 
this point. He looked at both men and 
said, “This will work for a couple of 
years, then it will be time to pay the 
piper. In other words Dad, sooner or 
later, the user groups may need help as 
our corporate policies change and we 
move away from the 8-bit computer. 
What do we do then? They will 
expect our support 


While the conversation above is, of course, fictious 
and events compressed, the corporate plan imple¬ 
mented by Atari was fairly close to what has been 
depicted. User groups did everything in their power to 
aid Atari’s resurgence. User groups promoted the 8-bit 
computer line, explained to the public how Atari’s 
corporate outlook had changed, and took on the task 
of being de facto customer representatives for Atari. 
After one year, inventory declined, cash flow improved, 
and everyone awaited the imminent arrival of the ST. In 
retrospect, one might say that 8-bit sales bought Atari 
the financial time it needed and user groups contribu¬ 
ted to the success of this strategy. 


However, with the advent of the ST computer, 
corporate policies indeed changed, just as Sam 
Tramiel might have said. Atari has all but ignored 8-bit 
users and, for the last year or so, the priority of U.S. ST 
purchasers has declined. Atari’s focus is the European 
market where ST sales are strong. But in Europe, there 
are few old-time users who remember the early days. 

The lack of attention on the part of Atari over the 
past year or more has taken its toll on U.S. user 
groups. Some have gone completely out of existence, 
some are just a shell, and others have witnessed a 
decline in numbers and/or participation. It is in Atari’s 


Page 26 


CURRENT NOTES 


June 1988 







interest to reverse this trend. What can Atari do? Well, 
there are two reoccurring themes in the responses to 
my queries of user group representatives: 

• Atari could make user groups the initial beneficiary 
of insider information on new product releases, 
bug fixes, and general hardware/software support. 
This could be accomplished through bulletins and 
technical fact sheets made available to the 
designated officer of a user group. Another 
suggestion would be for Atari to provide technical 
summaries of GEnie files concerning important 
hardware/software modifications. Simply put, con¬ 
sistent communications creates a rationale for a 
user group - the transmittal of technical and 
product information to users. 

• Atari could develop a road show. Thousands turn 
out in selected cities when Apple technical types 
visit to show-off the new wares to the users in the 
provinces. Why can’t Atari schedule one or two 
people for “a-month-on-the-road” each year 
with user groups demonstrating new hardware/ 
software as well as third party contributions. This 
might be much more cost effective in the long run 
than appearances at various Atarifests. 

One of the persons I asked for suggestions was 
the President of the Northern Virginia Atari Users 
Group, Georgia Weatherhead. While she was writing a 
response to my questions, the mailman deposited at 
her door a new Atari publication to be issued monthly. 
(This really happened, one day prior to submission of 
this column!) 

She immediately called Atari and found out that 
one copy will be distributed to each user group and the 
person responsible at Atari is Ms. Elizabeth Shook. The 
publication is located within the new computer division 
at Atari and Chuck Babbitt is its President. The initial 
issue is concerned solely with 16-bit computer infor¬ 
mation. I hope this publication will also recognize the 
needs of the Atari, non-games, 8-bit community. A 
substantial portion of the membership in the Washing¬ 
ton, D.C. area operates 8-bit machines. 

In any event, assuming this new publication 
continues and the content is expanded incorporating 
more technical information, it will help user groups lure 
back old members as well as the needed new blood. 
Ultimate success depends on word being spread on 
club events to local Atari dealers, user group members 
actively recruiting, and even in some cases innovative 
publicity. After the shake down period for the Atari 
newsletter, the ball is in the user’s group court. They 
better get ready. THIS IS AN EXCELLENT START BY 
ATARI. Congratulations. 


Most of the users felt strongly the “travelling road 
show” would be of immense value. This statement is 
qualified, of course, by the assumption that adequate 
local publicity precedes any visit by Atari officials. The 
road show has a number of advantages. It demon¬ 
strates to existing members the concern of corporate 
Atari. It has the potential for significant, immediate 
increments to user group membership rolls. It 
generates local media publicity favorable to Atari and, 
by implication, shows its concern for users to potential 
computer buyers. 

Needless to say I do not have all the answers nor 
even all the right questions. If Atari would like to join the 
dialogue, I would be willing to surrender all the space 
necessary for a response and/or alternative proposal(s). 
It’s their call! User groups and Atari must have a better 
working relationship. 

That’s all for now folks. 


ProCopy 


ST 

BACKUP 
UTILITY 

You can’t backup your software 
because copy protection locks 
you out. ProCopy is the key! 

■ Protects against the accidental loss of 
expensive software 

■ Works with all Atari STs 

■ Copies both S/S & D/S disks 

■ Use with 1 or 2 disk drives 

■ Not copy protected 

■ FREE shipping and handling 

■ TOLL-FREE telephone number 

■ Updates are only $12 with return 
H Orders shipped same day 

■ Disk analyze function included 


Dealer 

Inquiries 

Welcome 


and C.O.D. 
orders 


5 34.95 


Call (800) 843-1223 

Send check for $34.95 (overseas add $2.00 for air mail) to: 

PROCO PRODUCTS 

P.O. BOX 665, CHEPACHET, RHODE ISLAND 02814 USA 
(401) 568-8459 

Available the moving finger co. tech-soft 

Internationally Building 2 COMPUTER WHOLESALE 

in c„m no Shamrock Quay 324 Stirling Highway 

in curupe Southampton, SOl-lQL Claremont 

Q nc « England Western Australia 6010 

Australasia Tel. 0703-227274 Tel. 09-385-1885 


June 1988 


CURRENT NOTES 


Page 27 

















CN SPECIAL 


LASER QUALITY WITHOUT A 

LASER PRICE 


The HP "DeskJet" inkjet printer is without a doubt the single most 
important technological development for desktop publishing to come 
down the pike since the laser printer! 


By Jim Wallace 


For many of you who have 
been anxiously ‘‘wishing and hop¬ 
ing” for an alternative to a laser 
printer and expensive memory 
upgrades for quality desktop pub¬ 
lishing—the wait is finally over! 
Now, thanks to Hewlett Packard, 
you can get real “laser quality” 
output WITHOUT a laser printer! 
This is a review of the new, HP 
“DeskJet” INKJET printer that 
offers real “power without the 
price” for desktop publishers, and 
is without a doubt the single most 
important technological develop¬ 
ment for desktop publishing to 
come down the pike since the laser 
printer! 

Weighing Your Options... 

It was rumored for some time 
that Atari might introduce a low 
cost, high resolution printer that 
would run with relatively low 
memory. Instead, they introduced a 
laser printer for $1,995 retail that 
requires a minimum of two mega¬ 
bytes of memory to operate. This 
means that on top of the expense 
of the printer itself, you must either 
purchase a new Mega ST with at 
least two megs of memory for 
about $1,500, or upgrade the 
memory of your present ST com¬ 
puter to at least two megabytes. 
And since the required one meg 
memory chips have recently 
skyrocketed to around $40. each, 
you will spend about $700. for a 
memory board and the required 16 
chips it takes to get a 1040ST to 2 
1/2 megs. This is because most 
boards require that you go to 2 1/2 
megs instead of just two megs. 
Again, adding this required 1 1/2 


meg to a 1040ST to get it to 2 1/2 
megs requires 16 one megaBIT 
chips since these are measured in 
“bits”—not “bytes”. 

Besides buying an Atari laser 
printer, there are of course other 
alternatives available. You could 
purchase a Hewlett Packard Laser¬ 
Jet printer or compatible. Unlike the 
“Atari solution,” you won’t be 
required to upgrade your computer 
memory to run these printers—but, 
you’ll have to upgrade your prin¬ 
ter’s memory, and this will cost 
about the same as upgrading your 
Atari computer’s memory. 

You can of course, also pur¬ 
chase an expensive “Postscript” 
printer, but this will run you at least 
$3,500 for one of the “cheap” 
models! “Souped up” units with 
more memory and more fonts, fas¬ 
ter output, etc. will cost you even 
more. 

Bits, Bytes and Bucks... 

This extra memory, by the way, 
is needed because a laser printer 
must print the whole page “at 
once.” And for quality desktop 
publishing, you’ll need 300 dpi 
(dots-per-inch) resolution which 
interprets into 90,000 bits per 
square inch that the printer must 
deal with. For a typical 8 1/2x11 
inch page, your image area is 
about 8x10, and 8 times 10 equals 
80, and 80 square inches times 
90,000 bits comes to a whopping 
7,200,000 BITS of image, which in 
turn translates into almost 1 mega- 
BYTE! What all this means is that a 
typical laser printer MUST have 
about 1 meg just to create and 
hold the page for printing. Addi¬ 
tional memory is required for fonts 
and other files. 

In short folks, there’s a BIG 


“gotcha” anyway you go if you 
want a laser printer for desktop 
publishing. In the near future, per¬ 
haps as early as late this summer, 
when memory chips have hopefully 
come down in price, and Atari in¬ 
troduces a rumored “Postscript 
compatible software driver” for 
their laser printer, things should be 
different. But, if you’re like me, and 
are tired of almost endless “real 
soon now” promises, and must get 
things done NOW, an answer has 
ALREADY arrived. 

A Dream Come True... 

Just introduced in the first 
quarter of 1988, the amazing Hew¬ 
lett Packard “DeskJet” printer has 
solved the output problem for most 
of us. So finally, the “rest of us” 
have a relatively inexpensive, prac¬ 
tical, and viable answer to high 
quality output on the Atari ST com¬ 
puter. In short, the DeskJet is “A 
DREAM COME TRUE”—and in 
more ways than one! 

Comparing the Technology 

As most of you know, “laser” 
printers apply their image to paper 
the same way as most “dry” toner 
photocopiers. In fact, the only dif¬ 
ference between a “copier” and a 
“laser printer” is what FORM the 
“original” is in—a “digital stream of 
bits” or a visible, tangible image on 
paper. (Note that the new breed of 
“digital copiers” like the Canon 
Color Laser Copier, also use lasers 
to image the drum, yet cannot be 
connected to a computer). 

A “conventional” photocopier 
uses optics and “normal” reflected 
light to expose an electrostaticly 
charged drum with a mirrored 
image of the original. 


Page 28 


CURRENT NOTES 


June 1988 









A laser printer or laser copier, 
on the other hand, uses optics 
which reflect a high intensity laser 
beam onto the drum which pro¬ 
duces “rasterized” rows of dots 
which mirror the original, digital 
computer image. 

In either case, after the drum 
has been charged by light, both 
technologies produce the image 
onto paper in exactly the same 
way. This is done by using a dry, 
powdered “toner” that clings to 
either the image, or non-image 
areas of the drum (depending on 
whether “write black” or “write 
white” technology is used) and is 
then deposited onto the paper. This 
toner, which is basically composed 
of black carbon and plastic resin, is 
then “fused” (literally melted, or 
“glued”) to the paper surface by 
heat and pressure. There is no 
“ink” involved, and the toner is left 
“stuck” to the surface of the paper. 
I’ve simplified this process a bit for 
brevity, but I think you get the 
general idea. 

Back to the Future... 

As someone who has been 
involved in printing and “graphic 
arts” for many years, I have a 
“special affection” for the HP 
DeskJet. This is because it uses a 
unique “inkjet” technology to put 
images on paper. Specifically, this 
unique print method is described 
as “plain paper drop-on-demand 
thermal inkjet printing.” Much like 
an actual printing press, the HP 
DeskJet uses real, liquid INK and 
literally “sprays” this directly onto 
(and into) the paper, much like one 
of those robotic arms which auto¬ 
matically spray paint products on 
an assembly line. 

Although inkjet technology has 
been used for the past few years 
for high-speed addressing and 
other low quality “imprinting” 
applications, Hewlett Packard is 
probably the first to apply this in¬ 
novative, high tech process to high 
quality output for personal com¬ 
puters. 

The DeskJet uses a unique, 
replaceable ink cartridge/print head 
that produces an image by blowing 
ink through tiny, microscopic holes 
in its patented print head. The print 
head travels down the page in 
horizontal “passes” from left to 
right, across the sheet, much like 
other printers. 


Unlike printers which use rib¬ 
bons, an inkjet printer produces 
perfectly inked images without the 
annoying white lines, faded areas, 
and other imperfections produced 
by even the best dot matrix “im¬ 
pact” ribbon printers. Note that in¬ 
kjet, wire impact, and iaser printers 
are all dot matrix printers. The only 
difference is HOW they put the 
dots on the paper. 

In fact, large-scale inkjet print¬ 
ing technology may someday be 
used instead of printing presses to 
print just about everything—in¬ 
cluding your daily newspaper! The 
equipment just needs to be built 
large enough and fast enough to 
be able to move more paper 
through the machine. 

Performance?. ..It’s 
“BAD!” 

And just to prove how “bad” it 
really is, the HP DeskJet is not 
afraid to print large, perfectly prin¬ 
ted black solid areas and even fine 
screens. In fact, fine screens look 
so good you can’t tell whether they 
were produced by inkjet or by off¬ 
set printing. You see nothing but a 
solid gray, no lines or streaks wha¬ 
tever—but that’s not all folks! While 
producing perfect solid blacks, it 
also produces the finest hair lines. 
Pages produced by this amazing 
printer are picture perfect, and are 
as good (and in some cases better) 


than anything you can print on 
even the Atari laser printer. And I 
use the Atari laser printer for com¬ 
parison because it produces pro¬ 
bably the best image quality of any 
laser printer on the market today. 
And yes, it is virtually impossible to 
distinguish the difference between 
the same pages produced on both 
the Atari laser printer and the HP 
DeskJet. The DeskJet is normally 
slower, but the quality is the same. 
And since the DeskJet can be pur¬ 
chased for much less than $1,000, 
combined with the fact that it 
operates just fine on one megabyte 
of memory, this makes it a real 
“power without the price” product! 
In fact, the DeskJet is to printer 
price/performance what the Atari 
ST is to computer price/perfor¬ 
mance. 

As you may have already 
guessed, I’m really sold on the 
Hewlett Packard DeskJet! But to 
put this opinion in perspective, I've 
been in the graphic arts industry for 
many years. I’ve set REAL metal 
and wood type by hand, and I’ve 
also set type on some of the lead¬ 
ing photo and digital typesetters 
used in commercial typesetting, in 
other words, I’m into desktop pub¬ 
lishing “from the top down,” in¬ 
stead of from the “bottom up.” And 
because of my background in 
printing and advertising, it takes 
quite a lot just to get my attention, 
let alone my “admiration.” 

Since purchasing the DeskJet, 


June 1988 


CURRENT NOTES 


Page 29 















I’ve really “put it through its paces.” 
I’ve tried the “hard stuff:” large 
black solids, fine screens, and I’ve 
looked through a jewelers “loup” to 
see if the fine “serifs” are printing 
well. I’ve also tried printing both 
very small, and very large digitized 
photographs scanned on a 
Navarone scanner at 300 dpi. 

Comparing output from the 
DeskJet with even a great laser 
printer like “Atari’s own,” I’ve yet to 
see anything that is not equal in 
quality. In fact, I’ve even made a 
“game” of it. By printing the same 
pages on both the Atari laser prin¬ 
ter and the DeskJet, I have given 
these to people just to see if they 
can tell “which-is-which.” And so 
far, no one has been able to tell the 
difference! 

However, don’t get me wrong, 
there IS a way to tell the difference. 
But the “secret” is to look at the 
BACK of the sheet! Yep, because 
inkjet printing uses real INK, it nor¬ 
mally “wrinkles” the paper ever- 
so—slightly wherever it deposits the 
ink. This is not a “problem” howe¬ 
ver, it is simply one of those subtle 
little differences that are a part of 
any printing process. For instance, 
experienced printers can easily dif¬ 
ferentiate between sheets which 
have been printed by offset, let¬ 
terpress, gravure, silk screen, and 
other printing processes by simply 
knowing what “clues” to look for. 

Feed the Kitty... 

Besides outstanding print qua¬ 
lity, another advantage to using the 
DeskJet is that it uses cut sheet, 
plain paper. And while some paper 
prints better than others, almost 
anything works. The convenient 
paper tray holds up to 100 sheets, 
and the automatic paper feed 
mechanism functions perfectly and 
is very easy to use. 

Another major advantage to 
using cut sheet paper is that paper 
alignment is no longer a problem. 
For instance, if your software was 
set for a half inch margin all the 
way around the page, then that’s 
EXACTLY what you will get! No 
more wasted time trying toalign the 
horizontal and vertical position of 
tractor feed paper! 

Although any decent “bond” 
type paper works fine for most 
work, I’ve discovered by trial and 
error that for the finest reproduction 
possible you should use “Ham- 


mermill Laser Plus.” It even has a 
special “wax hold out coating” on 
the back for paste-up of camera 
ready masters. For the finest 
“reproduction proofs” this premium 
paper is tops. For a free sample 
pack of this fine paper and a Ham- 
mermill dealer near you, you can 
call them toll-free at 1-800-621- 
8272. 

The DeskJet not only feeds 
paper sizes up to 8 1/2 x 14, but 
will also feed envelopes! But 
because the paper must wrap 
around a roller (called a “platen”) 
much like a typewriter, this limits 
the paper thickness to about 60 lb. 
stock. It cannot feed “thick” post¬ 
cards, and mailing labels are not 
recommended. Small, die cut 
labels might possibly come off and 
stick inside the machine which 
could cause problems. 

...The DeskJet is to 
printer price/perfor¬ 
mance what the Atari 
ST is to computer 
price/performance... 


When printing envelopes, these 
must be fed by hand. The envelope 
feature is included for people who 
don’t have a typewriter and simply 
want to print simple addresses and 
the like on standard sizes up to a 
#10 size business envelope. You 
can print on these by using almost 
any word processor, but the pro¬ 
cess is slow and is only included as 
a “convenience feature.” 

Personally, I simply use my 
now “almost obsolete” dot matrix 
printer to print labels the “old fash¬ 
ioned way.” And for postcards and 
other thick stock, I just create an 
original on the DeskJet and then 
photocopy this on 8 1/2 x 11 inch 
“postcard stock” and cut out the 
cards as needed. But shucks, not 
even laser printers can feed 
EVERYTHING! 

Since having the DeskJet, I 
really haven’t used the old dot 
matrix much—but it’s not yet 
totally obsolete. It has now found a 
“new career” as a scanner, using 
the “IMG Scan” attachment. 


Compatibility Assured... 

Surprisingly, compatibility is 
fortunately a “non-issue” with the 


HP DeskJet printer since it uses 
some of the most popular printer 
languages in use today. The Desk¬ 
Jet comes with the HP PCL (level 
3) printer language built-in and an 
optional Epson FX-80 emulation 
cartridge is now available for about 
$75. 

Next to Epson and Postscript, 
the popular HP PCL printer 
language is supported by more 
software than you can imagine. 
Practically EVERY serious software 
program for both the IBM and the 
Atari ST supports this very popular 
language. This is mainly due to the 
immense popularity of the HP 
LaserJet printers. In fact, there are 
more HP laser printers and com¬ 
patibles around than any other type 
of laser printer, and this includes 
the Apple LaserWriter. What this 
means to you is that since the HP 
LaserJet and DeskJet both use vir¬ 
tually the same language, you can 
use the popular HP LaserJet drivers 
for your DeskJet! Note that the 
DeskJet doesn’t need to be “com¬ 
patible” with the LaserJet—it 
simply uses virtually the SAME 
language! I’ve used my DeskJet 
with HP 150 dpi and 300 dpi Laser¬ 
Jet drivers with programs like Pub¬ 
lishing Partner and Drafix / with no 
problems whatever. 

NOTE: Specifically, the DeskJet 
uses HP PCL “level 3” and the HP 
LaserJet uses HP PCL “level 4.” 
But the subtle difference shows up 
only when doing justified, “micro¬ 
spacing” in TEXT mode when using 
the DeskJet’s internal ROM fonts. 
Currently, WordPerfect is the only 
program supporting this feature in 
conjunction with HP’s optional font 
cartridges which are almost identi¬ 
cal to those used by the LaserJet. 

GDOS Output: GDOS output 
is already a reality from programs 
like Easy-Draw, Athena CAD, 
Microsoft Write, and TimeWorks 
Publisher, thanks to the folks at 
Migraph, who have brought you 
great, useful programs like Easy- 
Draw. Migraph has already written 
special DeskJet GDOS drivers 
which have been “tweaked” to give 
somewhat better performance than 
the LaserJet drivers. Also included 
with the 150 dpi and 300 dpi drivers 
are matching fonts for these reso¬ 
lutions. In addition, you get a 
“screen dump” program which 
allows you to do an “alternate/ 
help” screen printout in the normal 
fashion. This is especially useful if 


Page 30 


CURRENT NOTES 


June 1988 





you don’t have the optional Epson 
cartridge. 

A disk containing all of these 
goodies is now available from 
Migraph for about $40. In fact, 
Migraph also sells the DeskJet 
printer. I’ve used the GDOS drivers 
extensively and they work without a 
hitch. Note that to use these new 
drivers and fonts you must have 
the latest versions of both Easy- 
Draw and it’s accompanying “Out- 
print” program. Since Migraph is 
also selling the DeskJet printer and 
has taken the time to write custom 
drivers for it, they are supporting it 
very well. You can call Migraph for 
additional information toll-free at 
1-800-223-3729. And don’t forget 
to mention that you heard about it 
in Current Notes'. 

Epson Emulation: While the 
Epson emulation cartridge works 
great, and even adds some special 
features of it’s own, you must 
remember that the word “emula¬ 
tion” means “to work like some¬ 
thing else.” So don’t expect that 
with Epson emulation that your 
output from Epson drivers will 
magically print at 300 dpi—not so! 
It’s true that your printouts will look 
much better all around, but the 
resolution will be the SAME as with 
an Epson or compatible printer. It 
works this way on a laser printer, 
and it works this way on the Desk¬ 
Jet. 

Incidentally, since there is still 
no Epson emulator available for the 
Atari laser printer, DeskJet owners 
currently have another big com¬ 
patibility advantage. And, unlike the 
Atari laser printer which can only be 
used with an Atari computer, the 
HP DeskJet, because of it’s built- 
in, industry-standard serial and 
parallel ports, can be used with 
ANY personal computer. 

Want to Race?... 

While the HP DeskJet won’t 
normally beat a laser printer in the 
quarter mile, it does produce 
exceptional print quality that equals 
any laser printer. 

Speed is a relative thing on any 
printer, and the DeskJet is no 
exception. Printouts can take from 
30 seconds to about 20 minutes, 
depending on many factors. 

Text Mode: Like other prin¬ 
ters, the DeskJet uses built-in 
ROM fonts for fast, text-only out¬ 


put. The printer’s rated print speed 
for such “default fonts” is 120 cps 
at 10 cpi in letter-quality mode, 
and 240 cps at 10 cpi in draft 
mode. The printer can use the 
built-in Courier font, more than a 
dozen optional font cartridges 
which even include big-gun “type¬ 
set quality” fonts like Times Roman 
and Helvetica, or “soft (download¬ 
able) fonts” used with optional 
printer RAM. You can expect to 
print a respectable two pages per 
minute when using the “built-in” 
fonts. 

Draft mode prints at 150 dpi 
while letter quality mode prints at 
300 dpi. Print quality is indis¬ 
tinguishable from even a daisy 
wheel, and the normal print fea¬ 
tures like variable pitch, bold, italic, 
etc. are obviously supported. A 
friendly printer control panel and 
easy-to-use, plug-in cartridges 
with bright green LED’s, make 
using this whisper quiet printer a 
breeze. 


... The printer’s rated 
speed is 120 cps at 10 
cpi in letter-quality 
mode, and 240 cps at 10 
cpi in draft mode... 


Graphics: Here is where the 
DeskJet really shines! It does full- 
page bit-maped graphics at 75, 
100, 150, and 300 dpi. Margin 
space around your page at 300 dpi 
is the same as for a laser printer. 
You can print as close as a quar¬ 
ter-inch from the edges of the 
sheet which gives you an effective 
image area of about 8 x 10 1/2 for 
a letter size sheet. 

The time it takes to print a full 
page of graphics depends on many 
factors. These include: the program 
used to create the page, the type 
and efficiency of the drivers used, 
what printer language is used, the 
amount of computer memory avail¬ 
able, print buffer size (the DeskJet 
comes with a built-in 16K buffer 
and an optional 128K RAM car¬ 
tridge is available), whether serial 
or parallel is used (parallel is much 
faster), the make-up of your page 
(text and high resolution bitmaps 
like photos normally take longer to 
print than simple “objects” like 


lines, boxes and polygons), and 
still other variables. 

In general, graphic files which 
can use GEM output—like Easy- 
Draw —print much faster than pro¬ 
grams like Publishing Partner which 
currently doesn’t have fast, optim¬ 
ized drivers. The latest release of 
Publishing Partner Professional 
(which may not be out till summer) 
is supposed to ship with “enhan¬ 
ced” drivers for the HP LaserJet/ 
DeskJet printers that reportedly will 
speed up the current version by as 
much as 40%. 

Average times for Easy-Draw 
at 300 dpi run about 3-5 minutes 
per full page. While Publishing 
Partner averages about 10 minutes 
per full page. But “small” layouts in 
Publishing Partner have printed out 
in as little as one minute, while 
“heavy” full-page layouts have 
taken as long as 20 minutes. (The 
150 dpi drivers are used for fast 
proofing, and print out in about half 
the time). 

Note that the DeskJet only has 
to make one pass per line regard¬ 
less of resolution or mode. For 300 
dpi it just “blows” more dots onto 
the paper in the same pass. This is 
a far cry from my “old” dot matrix 
impact printer that must make as 
many as three passes for so-called 
“high rez” output. 

Zapping A “Myth:” Most 
people probably think that laser 
printers are always “lightning fast,” 
but this is simply not always the 
case. This probably has to do with 
the word “laser,” which conjures 
up images of instantaneous light 
beams shooting everywhere. It’s 
true laser beams are fast, the pro¬ 
blem is that they must first be given 
the “directions” to know where to 
go. Laser printers (just like the 
DeskJet and dot matrix impact 
printers) must first change the prin¬ 
ter language used by the software 
into a bitmap (this process is called 
“RIP,” or “raster image process¬ 
ing”). This is a complicated pro¬ 
cess which can take a long time to 
accomplish, since at 300 dpi, the 
computer must map over 7 million 
pixels for a full-page graphic! 
Depending of course on which 
printing language is used, and 
other factors, it can take even a 
$5,000 Apple LaserWriter using 
Postscript (no speed demon itself) 
over 15 minutes to create a raster¬ 
ized image in memory. So, as you 


June 1988 


CURRENT NOTES 


Page 31 





can see, it always takes additional 
time for each different page to print 
on a laser printer. Once the image 
is created however, a laser printer 
can then print copies of this “ori¬ 
ginal” image as fast as the printer 
can physically operate. And for 
most laser printers, this is about 
eight sheets per minute. 

What all of this means is that 
while both the laser and DeskJet 
printer need additional time to pro¬ 
cess the first page, the laser printer 
is capable of pumping out addi¬ 
tional copies of each page much 
faster, while the DeskJet takes 
almost as long to print each copy 
as it does to print the original. But 
this applies only to graphics. 

All text pages produced with 
any printer with built-in fonts will 
print at the maximum speed of the 
device. Text pages produced with 
built-in fonts do not need to be 
processed as bitmaps since the 
mapping for the character sets 
already reside in ROM. 

To sum up folks, the DeskJet 
will print, on average, much faster 
than a “dot matrix” printer, but 
slower than an average laser prin¬ 
ter. Remember that when the 
DeskJet is printing at 300 dpi, it’s 
printing 90,000 dots (or “pixels”) 
per square inch! 

As laser printers go, the Atari 
laser printer, which uses the very 
fast “DMA” port, is probably the 
fastest laser printer around. In fact, 
it can easily print a full-page from 
Easy-Drawn less than one minute! 
But don’t expect to get this same 
speed from a HP Laser printer or 
compatible. Like the DeskJet, these 
printers cannot be connected to 
Atari’s own proprietary DMA port 
and must therefore use either the 
slow serial port or the relatively fast 
parallel port. Perhaps surprisingly, I 
have found that in many cases the 
DeskJet has actually been faster 
than some laser printers! 

I’ve Always Said: “That if I 
only had a printer that would give 
me beautiful typeset quality, I 
wouldn’t care so much about how 
long it took to print out.” Well, the 
DeskJet is just that. Since I use it 
strictly for commercial typesetting, 
I’m only concerned about getting 
ONE, good, “camera-ready” page 
for later reproduction by offset or 
copy machine. If you need a printer 
for a large office where each sheet 
must be printed in multiples, or you 


need a printer that can be connec¬ 
ted to a network of users at the 
same time, then the DeskJet may 
not be for you. But if you’re like me 
and just want to produce fine “ori¬ 
ginals” and will be using the printer 
just yourself, then the DeskJet may 
be just the ticket. The DeskJet is 
advertised as a “personal printer,” 
and for that purpose it is well sui¬ 
ted. 


Dots of a Different Color... 

It is important to understand 
that the “dots-per-inch” produced 
on low resolution, dot matrix ribbon 
printers OVERLAP. So even though 
your printer may be rated at “240 
dots-per-inch,” this is not really 
accurate. All high resolution 
devices like the DeskJet, laser 
printers, and higher output devices 
like the Linotype digital typesetters 
produce dots which are SIDE-BY- 
SIDE, and these dots do NOT 
overlap! The DeskJet, like other 
“high-end” printers, produces 
clean, sharp, and accurately posi¬ 
tioned dots. If you wish to check 
this out for yourself, just use a 
good magnifying glass or jeweler’s 
“loop” and compare the output 

... Practically no other 
company supports their 
products as well as 
Hewlett Packard ... 


from different types of printers. To 
some of you, this may sound like a 
minor issue, but the print quality 
from these different printers “speak 
for themselves.” 


Incidentals... 

Easy Set-Up: The DeskJet 
comes attractively packaged and 
easily sets up in a few minutes. In 
fact, you probably won’t even need 
to look at the beautifully printed 
documentation that comes with the 
unit! Just unpack it, plug your ST 
into the parallel port, pop in an ink 
cartridge, flip the switch, and start 
producing beautiful, whisper quiet 
output that rivals anything you may 
have seen before. The DeskJet is 
the easiest printer I’ve ever set-up 
and used! 


Excellent Support: Practi¬ 
cally no other company supports 
their products as well as Hewlett 
Packard. From the moment you 
open the first-class packaging that 
surrounds your DeskJet, you are 
literally “awash” with support from 
toll-free phone numbers and local 
and international sen/ice personnel 
available around-the-clock. 

Reliability: The DeskJet has 
an excellent reliability and estima¬ 
ted usage rating (“MTBF”—mean 
time between failures) of 20,000 
hours. 2,000 hours power-on and 
12,000 printed pages per year, or 
about 50 pages per day average 
use. Replaceable, non-clogging 
print cartridges cost about $17 
each and are fully guaranteed. The 
printer comes with a 1-year “no- 
nonsense” guarantee against parts 
and labor. 


The Bottom Line... 

The DeskJet has the same 
resolution and virtually the same 
ability to accurately print “dots” 
onto paper as a laser printer. Thus, 
the DeskJet’s true potential to pro¬ 
duce top quality output is virtually 
dependent upon the capabilities of 
the software to generate and pro¬ 
duce precise fonts and graphics. 
This is made especially evident by 
closely comparing pages printed 
on various laser printers that use 
Postscript, HP PCL, GEM “meta 
files,” and “proprietary” schemes 
used by programs like Publishing 
Partner and Apple’s own “Quick- 
draw.” While all of these methods 
are capable of great output, they 
ALL have their own strengths and 
weaknesses. An in-depth compari¬ 
son of these methods may become 
a future article, but for now I think 
that it’s sufficient to simply say that 
all of these methods—whether 
used on laser printers or the Desk¬ 
Jet, are capable of superior output. 
In short, IF you think that laser 
output looks better than DeskJet 
output, then perhaps you should 
blame the software —not the 
DeskJet! 

But enough said! If you would 
like a free color brochure and addi¬ 
tional information about the new 
HP2276A DeskJet inkjet printer, you 
can call HP toll-free at 1-800- 
752-0900. 

Happy Printing! 


Page 32 


CURRENT NOTES 


June 1988 








CN SPECIAL 


Graphics Operating Environment 
Merrill Ward’s New "ST Junior" 


An interview with Shelly Merrill, President of Merrill Ward 


By Len Poggiali 


Recently / had the opportunity to 
speak with Shelly Merrill, president 
of Merrill Ward, about his com¬ 
pany’s new Graphics Operating 
Environment. This desktop program 
for Atari 8-bits, which may be 
operated by using an ST mouse, by 
joystick, or by keyboard, makes our 
8-bits look and function very much 
like STs (but without compatibility, 
of course). 

in the following interview, Mr. Merrill 
not on/y gave his impressions of 
GOE but a/so of the first externa/ 
program to be developed for it- 
-Ce/ebrity Cookbook. Mr. Merrill 
began the interview with an open¬ 
ing statement. -LP 

The primary reason the cookbook 
was programmed in that manner 
within the GOE environment was to 
show everyone that we do have a 
developers’ package, and that our 
desktop will be of such a nature 
that external programs for the 8- 
bits can be done in this manner. 
No one believed that a desktop for 
the 8-bits would ever be done. The 
primary myth we want to address- 
-that everyone has given up, and it 
is alarming. This is why we took the 
time to put our desktop on our 
cookbook program. We were not 
initially going to do that. We were 
just going to give you an 8-bit 
version. It resulted in a three- 
month delay, finalizing our compiler 
just for that program. We finished 
our developers’ package before we 
finished our desktop package. 


What specifically is your back¬ 
ground? 

I came from t.v. I was president and 
chairman of the board of Delaware 
Public Television. I built their station 
in cooperation with WHYY, Channel 
12 in Philadelphia. My other asso¬ 
ciates have been in advertising and 
public relations for some time now. 
We do the Bob Hope Theatre 
Program here in Palm Desert, 
which is our equivalent of your 
Kennedy Center back East. We 
also publish three or four maga¬ 
zines, and we license materials that 
we feel would be appropriate for 
the home computer market that 
have not been done before, and 
that had been successful in maga¬ 
zine print in terms of wide public 
interest material rather than just the 
gamey-type stuff that had been 
associated with home computers. 
The Celebrity Cookbook was put 
together by my partner, Diane 
Ward, who used to write for news¬ 
papers and magazines, and still 
does from time to time. She felt 
there was a definite need, that 
there was not a comprehensive 
catering program for the home for 
individuals to try materials to throw 
successful dinner parties. The 
celebrity recipes are unique in that 
they are collected by the celebrities 
from all over the world, and they 
are their favorite recipes, and the 
recipes that they use when they 
areholding dinner parties. We also 
have a wine guide and a bar guide 
and party tips on there. 

How did you go about getting their 
recipes? 

There have been several celebrity 


cookbooks written over the years in 
various areas, and we simply 
licensed their materials from press 
agents and so forth. A lot are 
donated to us from the celebrities, 
something they wanted to do in 
terms of their own interests. 

What is your experience with the 
Atari computer? 

The Atari is interesting in that our 
company was born of IBM and 
Commodore. We left-handedly 
walked into the Atari field as we 
went through the process of gath¬ 
ering about us different program¬ 
mers. We gathered several pretty 
top-notch Atari programmers that 
are also doing IBM and other things 
for us, and they suggested that we 
support the Atari market. Of course, 
we support the ST with the cook¬ 
book program because we produce 
the fastest word processor for the 
ST on that editor. And then we 
decided we would get into the 
8-bit area. We would been toying 
around with the desktop for some 
time on other machines, and we 
looked into putting it onto Atari 
because there was a definite lack 
of one there. It is kind of been a 
hobby/tragedy/full-time endeavor. 

Te/i me a little about the history of 
that. 

That program had been under 
development since 1986. We would 
work on it and work on it and then 
go work on something else and 
then come back to it. 

Was this in your offices in Pa/m 
Springs? 

Merrill Ward and our associates are 
a consortium, a little like Electronic 


June 1988 


CURRENT NOTES 


Page 33 









Arts. What we have is a group of 
people involved with us with their 
own separate companies, and we 
are in charge of the consortium. 
Everything funnels through Merrill 
Ward: the development, the design, 
we all get together and decide 
what it is going to look like and 
agonize over whatever comprom¬ 
ises we have to make to meet our 
standards, which border on perfec¬ 
tion. 

How many people are we talking 
about? 

We have got roughly ten separate 
organizations involved. Some pre¬ 
fer to remain anonymous. I can not 
tell you who provides the venture 
capital. The programmers come 
and go. We own the copyrights. 
We are ultimately the ones pub¬ 
lishing, developing, and generating 
the projects. 

You were talking about skepticism 
out there. 

This is the result of a poll. We have 
as part of our organization a tele¬ 
marketing organ, and we retained 
them to conduct a telephone poll 
of users groups, retailers, and in¬ 
dividuals. I have done a lot of 
personal polling to ascertain 
exactly what the state of the Atari 
8-bit is in the eyes of the user. We 
already have an idea of what some 
of the bigger companies are saying 
about it. It ranges from, “We will do 
it reluctantly,” or, “We will not 
support it at all,” to companies like 
ours who say, “We are going to 
support it”. It is alarming to us that 
the user appears to have given up, 
and we found a lot of occasions 
where they would not even go back 
into the retail outlets because the 
software support does not seem to 
be there. There are no new titles; 
nothing is happening; it has lost its 
energy. We believe firmly that this 
need not be the case. That is why 
we are going forward with our 
desktop, even though we chose a 
catering program to introduce it 
with. 

Are there any special reasons you 
decided to start with a catering 
program? 



Ronald Reagan 1 s Coffee Blanc Mange 


HEXT 


mt mu i mmu iittttttttttttttittttttttt 
ft Ronald Reagan's tt 

mi u n » n » mi n ttnltwitwwttnwttw 
Ingredients 

1 package (si chocolate 
Cor vanillal pudding 
1 cup nilk 

: into a paste 

1 cup strong coffee 

I. Bring to a boil, stirring 


The reason we did that is because 
of the text-based involvement with 
that program. The data bases are 
enormous on that program—about 
1/2 million individual characters if 
not more. For any 8-bit computer 
to be worth its salt in this market of 
changing times it has to be able to 
manipulate vast amounts of text. Of 
course, our desktop has to be able 
to do that as well. So the cook¬ 
book, given the enormity of the 
program, was the perfect chal¬ 
lenge. It is very important to us that 
our programs run on 48K 
machines. The program and the 
desktop will run on everything, 
even the game machine . So we 
are not leaving out anybody. We do 
not like the word “orphan”. 

What will the desktop do? 

We call it a Graphics Operating 
Environment. It gives you a visual 
display rather than something cal¬ 
led DOS. Once a lady told me, “I 
do not speak DOS-ee. I speak 
English. I do not type either.” 65 
percent of America does not type. 
The mouse-driven desktop is 
designed to allow for everyone to 
use a computer system without the 
necessity of learning how to type. 

What programs will be in the basic 
package? 

The basic package will include a 
desktop program that will give you 
all DOS functions that you have 


now. It will be Atari ADOS, the new 
DOS which we hope will be hard- 
drive supported. The program is 
being written on a hard drive, 
though we can not support a hard 
drive right now. The cartridge will fit 
on the back of the computer. It is 
intended to stay there to allow 
users to use their disk drives to 
load all existing external programs. 
Generally what it is is an environ¬ 
ment to run softwarein. It is also an 
environment to utilize all the DOS 
functions that you are now using. 
We also have sorting programs 
designed for it. We have fonts, an 
icon editor, paint program, word 
processor, and a calculator; it is a 
complete disk. 

Suppose you want to load a non- 
GOEprogram? 

If you load in a piece of software 
and click on the disk icon twice, 
you will get a directory, and you 
can boot it from there. It is just like 
the ST, only it is an 8-bit version. 
Also, we are not robbing the 
memory of the computer in any 
way because the program’s on 
cartridge. 

How does Atari, inc. fee/ about a/i 
this? 

Atari is very eager for us to com¬ 
plete the project. We are very 
eager. At this point I expect full 
cooperation. 


Page 34 


CURRENT NOTES 


June 1988 
































How would you compare GOE with 
GEOS? 

From the standpoint of the Com¬ 
modore 64, GEOS is an excellent 
program. GEOS does not support 
the VIC-20, though. What we have 
done, since Atari elected to put out 
a 48K machine as well as 64K and 
128K machines, is to run on all of 
them. We also think it is better 
because it is not a disk program. I 
think it is cleaner and more con¬ 
venient to do it that way. Also, we 
have better memory management 
on ours. When you load GEOS on 
the 64, you are real close to being 
out of memory. 

How sophisticated compared to 
some other programs on the mar¬ 
ket are your word processor and 
paint program going to be? 

Extremely sophisticated. The recipe 
filer on the cookbook is a good 
example. If you go into the editor, 
you will see that we windowed 
everything. You will see that you 
are clicking on files to load them, to 
delete them, to rename them, to 
whatever you want to do to them. 
You are reading them off disk 
without loading them, which is a 
form of multi-tasking. If you have a 
file in our editor of that filer, and 
someone comes in and says, 
“Remember that letter you wrote to 
Joe Blow?” you can say, “Just a 
moment, let me get it for you,” and 
you can click on the list feature, 
which will list it out, and you can 
print it and go right back to the 
editor and continue typing. So we 
have done a lot of things on there. 
Just as a word processor it is state 
of the art. We have cut-and-paste, 
search-and replace. And we have 
simplified it. We have line center¬ 
ing. We have create columns. You 
can set your margins with your 
tabs. As long as you do not press 
Return, it continues to stay in the 
same spot. The only thing we did 
not finish on the 8-bit cookbook, 
because it is the recipe filer (simply 
recipes and short letters), was to 
disable the wordwrap on insert, but 
that is real easy to work with. 

That’s for the cookbook but not for 
the word processor on the desk¬ 


top? 

The actual word processor is a 
full-functioned word processor with 
everything: left-right margin set¬ 
tings; about eight different fonts to 
choose from, different styles and 
sizes; bold face and underlining; 
the whole nine yards. I mean 
everything that Paperclip had on it 
and then some. We believe that it 
will be one of the best ever pro¬ 
duced on the Atari, if not the best. 
We are going for the best. 

The Celebrity Cookbook has been 
out for awhile? 

Nope—January. We’ve only ship¬ 
ped the 8-bit as of mid-January. 
The new Mega-ST version is out 
now. 

Are you into Volume 2 in any of 
your systems yet? 

On Volume 2 we are well on our 
way. On Atari they’ll be a delay 
because you cannot run Volume 2 
without Volume 1. That’s why the 
price is so much cheaper on 
Volume 2—$19.99. $34.99 on 
Volume 1. You get your editor, your 
wine guide, bar guide, party tips, 
and celebrity diets. On Vol 2 we 
have our sorter where you tell the 
program what you have available in 
your cupboard, and it gives you a 
recipe if it has one on the disk 
that’s suitable for it. We also have a 
weight and substitutions table. If 
you buy all six volumes, you will 
have every piece of information 
anyone would ever need to cook 
(101 uses of salt, for instance). Our 
researchers have been hard at 
work at everything. Of course, in 
Volume 1 we tried to put in the 
programs most commonly used. 
Each program will have 50 celebrity 
recipes divided as Volume 1 is. We 
are moving right along. 

Anything e/se you would like to 
add? 

I know that there’s a lot of interest 
for this desktop. We are more than 
willing to send anyone a demo disk 
for $5.00 which will come right off 
the price. And whoever buys the 
demo will get the program first. Or, 
if they would rather not buy the 


demo but would like to see what 
we are talking about, they can go 
to Federated or any other Atari 
outlet and take a look at the 
cookbook. And they will be getting 
a fine program for their money 
anyway—the only home catering 
program on the market and the first 
external program from the desktop. 

in the future do you see yourself 
doing the sorts of things that are 
being done with GEOS (coming out 
with other GOE-compatibie pro¬ 
grams)? 

What we have done differently than 
them is that we decided we were 
going to publish the desktop and 
the developers’ kit at the same 
time, or one shortly after the other. 
We are not holdingonto our tech¬ 
nology. We are sharing it with other 
developers. We are in it to make 
money, let’s not kid ourselves. Of 
course, we can not supply the 
world with free software, but if our 
desktop is any good, they will buy 
it; if it is not, then they will not buy 
it. We have mastered the thing to 
the point where nothing could con¬ 
ceivably be wrong with it that can 
not be fixed. Try the resizer. Have 
you noticed that dashes will go to 
cups? Tablespoons will go to 
quarts. Have you noticed that the 
dry ingredients are limited to cups 
only? You don’t have a gallon of 
salt to deal with. 999 servings and 
you get an awful lot of cups. That’s 
true in the editor for your own 
recipes as well. We are not just 
changing the numbers. We are 
going from teaspoons to table¬ 
spoons to cups to quarts to gallons 
with our own algorithm. You can 
put the price of the recipe at the 
bottom, and that will go up and 
down as well. If you have a recipe 
for steak that on average costs you 
$3.00 to prepare, and you love it, 
and someone calls you to cook the 
steaks for twenty, and yours is for 
two, you can find out how much all 
twenty need to kick in for this little 
party. You can also put our wines 
on the wine guide, and price those 
out too. That way you can get a 
good idea what you little night out 
will cost you. 


June 1988 


CURRENT NOTES 


Page 35 




ATARI ST/MEGA 


CN REVIEW 


KEEP THE GOOD STUFF COMING 


NeoDesk, Tempos and other goodies 

by J. Andrzej Wrotniak 


Not so long ago some soft¬ 
ware companies on the Atari ST 
market were spending lots of 
money for advertising products 
which did not work, and enthu¬ 
siastic reviewers were raving about 
great programs which were some¬ 
times performing as advertised, 
usually crashing not more often 
than once an hour. 

Some publishers, however, are 
switching to the unorthodox way of 
making money: by devoting more 
attention to writing (or distributing) 
good programs. Hard to believe, 
but this may even become a trend. 
A complete reversal of sound 
business practices? What is going 
on here? 

Here are some remarks on the 
programs which recently attracted 
my attention and which, I think, 
deserve attention in the ST field. 

NeoDesk: 

A Clean, Mean (But Not Lean) 
Desktop Machine 

After having heard a lot of 
gossip about this supposedly great 
program, I decided to see it with 
my own astigmatic eyes. One 
phone call and four days later it 
arrived in a plain brown wrapper, 
raising my secretary’s eyebrows. 

NeoDesk is written by Mr. Dan 
Wilga (have you seen his Public 
Domain MemFi/e/ sector editor?), 
and Mr. Wilga seems to take pride 
in his work. Here he is again, 
saying “Look, guys, here is how 
things should be done”, and put¬ 
ting his programming skills where 
his mouth is. 

In brief, Neodesk'x s an alterna¬ 
tive desktop for the ST. When you 
run it, the regular desktop with 
familiar windows and icons dis¬ 
appears, being replaced by—yes, 
you’re right— almost familiar win¬ 
dows and icons, behaving as you 
would expect. You can run other 


programs from it, do operations on 
files, format disks, display files— 
-yes, this is a desktop. 

No big deal? Wait. There are 
dozens of features in NeoDesk, 
which you will soon start to 
appreciate and enjoy, wondering 
how could Atari have left them out, 
and how could you live without 
them. 

Almost all menu entries have 
keyboard alternatives. File icons 
are always rearranged to fit the 
window width. Disks can be for¬ 
matted in various standards. File 
copying leaves the time stamp 
unchanged, and file operations 
can be aborted at any point. The 
file template at the top of a win¬ 
dow can be modified so that only 
files matching it will be displayed. 
Selecting any group of files will 
display their total size. The list 
goes on and on, and I will skip 
over some more advanced—and 
less frequently used—points. 

My favorite feature is the pos¬ 
sibility of dragging programfiles 
from their windows to the desktop. 
When the window is then closed, 
the program still remains acces¬ 


sible for execution, as long as the 
the floppy disk—if it is a floppy 
disk—is not removed from the 
drive. 

Hard disk users will love this 
option, as the desktop configu¬ 
ration can be saved to disk, so that 
these selected files will be avail¬ 
able upon bootup. Have I men¬ 
tioned that NeoDesk can be auto- 
executed (STARTGEM, a public 
domain program, is included) when 
you boot you machine? You may 
have all the most frequently used 
programs on the desktop at the 
same time, without opening, clos¬ 
ing and resizing windows. Some 
people may want to buy NeoDesk 
just for this single feature. 

If you do not like NeoDesks 
built-in icons (or the desktop pat¬ 
tern), a custom editor is enclosed- 
-suit yourself. Designing your own 
icons can be more fun than some 
of the games I’ve seen. 

The program seems to work 
without glitches. Mr. Wilga adheres 
to the old-fashioned (and, of 
course, economically unjustified) 
principle of debugging a program 
before selling it. Some people 


NeoDesk File View Options 18:18:22 



Page 36 


CURRENT NOTES 


June 1988 









































ATARI ST/MEGA 


CN REVIEW 


never will learn from the industry 
leaders. 

Yes, I would like to see some 
minor changes to the program. I 
am missing the “Show As Text” 
display mode, the real “Sort By 
Type” option (in addition to the 
modified one) and the possibility of 
declaring executables by any 
extensions I choose. All these fea¬ 
tures are available in the standard 
GEM desktop (the last one by 
modification of the DESKTOP.INF 
file), and not much space was 
gained by leaving them out. 

Also, file copying on a one- 
drive configuration is not really im¬ 
proved, still requiring zillions of 
disk swaps the same way as the 
standard DRI desktop does. 

The main disadvantage of 
NeoDesk\s its size: almost 150k of 
your precious memory. For the 
520ST owners this is a major limi¬ 
tation, which may make a dif¬ 
ference between a very useful uti¬ 
lity and just a nice conversation 
item to impress your friends (one 
of my friends, a Macintosh owner 
is still there with his jaw hanging 
down). The same is true when you 
work on a 1040 with a half-mega- 
byte RAM disk. However, you may 
always exit NeoDesk \o the regular 
desktop, reclaiming all this 
memory, if you need to. One may 
also hope that future versions of 
NeoDesk may be trimmed down 
by 30-40k, which may be a signifi¬ 
cant difference. 

On the other hand, those of us 
who use 1040’s or Mega ST’s, will 
never regret $30 spent for the 
NeoDesk, and for the hard disk 
owners it is a must. 

If the Atari Corporation wanted 
to improve the ST user interface 
significantly without spending too 
much money, they should just buy 
the rights to NeoDesk (possibly 
ordering some modifications), burn 
it into ROMs and install it into 
every machine sold. But they seem 
to be too busy building prototypes 
ofnew computers, incompatible 
with the ST line (of course: who 
cares about my software invest¬ 
ment?), to be available some year 
in the next century. 


Desktop Publisher 

From GST/Timeworks 

I am not going to write a 
review of this product. The Pub¬ 
lisher deserves an in-depth 
review, which I do not feel quali¬ 
fied to write; on the other hand, 
the new look of Current Notes is a 
proof that the program works. 
Every serious ST user I know 
already bought a copy before any 
advertising appeared in the press. 
The power of the grapevine. 

Without any previous 
experience in desktop publishing, 
in less than an hour after opening 
the package i was able to format 
some old text files into columns 
and boxes, mix various fonts, 
paste, crop and resize Degas pic¬ 
tures, and do other things pre¬ 
viously out of my reach. Does the 
program need more recommen¬ 
dation? 

Being generally a very good 
and solid product, the Publisher 
has some flaws. Three points of 
criticism come into mind: 

Design. The feature I miss 
most is the possibility of exporting 
a text unit (“story”) back into a 
text file. In some situations (after 
modifying the text from within the 
Pub/ishei) it can be very desirable. 

Implementation. The pro¬ 
gram sometimes crashes (I sus¬ 


pect the text editing at the redu¬ 
ced-size viewing modes, try to 
avoid doing it). Resizing of the 
pixel-mapped images sometimes 
works in an unpredictable fashion 
(no lasting damage here, though). 

Documentation. The manual 
is suitable for a very inexperienced 
user, but it makes a much better 
impression before you read it than 
after. Basically, it contains almost 
nothing not included into the on¬ 
screen help. Not a single word is 
uttered on how you install your 
own fonts, what are the principles 
used by the program for font 
choice and substitution, etc. With 
experimentation and patience 
many of these questions can be 
answered, but not all. I would 
gladly pay $20 extra for a detailed 
technical manual. 

In spite of the above, the pro¬ 
gram is gooooood. This may be 
one of the hottest sellers of 1988. 
Available for $80-$100 (discoun¬ 
ted) it is a bargain, too. Go to your 
dealer and do not come back 
without it. 

Fontz! 

The Publisher’s Companion 

This program was reviewed in 
depth by Milt Creighton in the May 
issue of the Current Notes. Once 
again: everybody knew about 
Fontz! without any advertising 


iW» File Edit Options Page Style Text Sraphics Help 



j e 1: ‘ < 

B:\SfiMPLE-I.DTPTi 

. : • • ss 

loH 

Times_24 

Swiss. 

24 ± 

It 

Times 20 

Swiss 

2° j| 


1 Times 16 or Swiss 16 

Times 12 T^pWT Swiss 12 

rurlfiFltvl r 'll fin ■ 

<r 

iw jo " Typewriter 13 s*«s 10 

(KjyEJlJJ 

BODY TEXT 

BULLET 

Times 8 

8m 8 

eh) ^ 

HEADLINE 

SUBHEAD 

Camdot 36 



Camdot 29 i 

Catttdut 18 


RmAnia 16 


n&gri] 

$ 

Miil 

■llilj 

(ilattett 14 
j unlit U 

mm 

AJk ■ 


h. 




June 1988 


CURRENT NOTES 


Page 37 
















































ATARI ST/MEGA 


before the program was ever 
available. 

I found it very handy in clean¬ 
ing up, modifying and adapting a 
new set of fonts for the Publisher, 
and the accompanying manual 
answered many questions I was 
always afraid to ask. The program 
is nicely designed and clean; I 
have yet to discover any problems 
(other than crashing at the attempt 
to read an illegal file). The docu¬ 
mentation is brief, complete and 
useful. 

One may predict, that a 
majority of Publisher users will end 
up buying Fontz! as well; selling for 
less than $30 it is a very good buy. 
If the author, Mike Fulton, decides 
to write a font librarian, I am 
already looking forward to it. 

GEMFED 

A Public Domain Alternative 

If you cannot afford to buy 
Fontz! or do not plan to do much 
font-related work, you may want to 
try GEMFED. 

This program by Brad Christie 
has been around for a while. It 
allows you to access, modify or 
design GDOS fonts. No, it will not 
translate fonts from other stan¬ 
dards (as the Macintosh ones), but 
otherwise it will perform most 
things Fontz! does. 

Early versions had some bugs, 
but the recent one (I have 1.11) 
seems to be clean: I’ve used it 
quite a lot with no problems. 

Tempus 

Fast and Neat Text Editor 

Finally, I would like to call your 
attention to one program I really 
like a lot and use all the time. This 
is Tempus ; an ASCII file editor 
written by M.Schuelein for the 
German CCD (of the Persona/ 
Pascal fame), and distributed in 
the USA by Eidersoft. 

An ASCII editor? No fonts, no 
styles, no pictures, no columns? 
Come on, we are talking word 
processing and desktop publish¬ 
ing, and here comes a product that 


just can be used for creating plain 
ASCII files? Is this enough of a 
reason to make all this noise? 

Yes! For many of us (mostly 
programmers, but not only) a text 
editor is the program with which 
we spend more time each day 
than with anything else, and Tem¬ 
pus can save you a lot of incon¬ 
venience and irritation. 

First, it has a plethora of func¬ 
tions. Four text windows, half¬ 
height text mode, powerful block, 
search and replace functions, 
everything you would expect from 
a powerful text editor, and more. 
Some of the functions you may 
seldom use (e.g. printer translation 
files, redefinable function keys, 
cross-reference listing), but never 
do they obstruct or interfere with 
the basic operation. And, of 
course, everything is accessible- 
from the keyboard (in addition to 
the menu bar). 


...Tempus is lightning fast. 

I have never seen any¬ 
thing even come close, on 
a micro or a mainframe.... 


Second, all of it is imple¬ 
mented in an extremely con¬ 
venient and elegant way. Looks 
very clean, behaves like an angel, 
and in a year or so of using it I 
have never, ever crashed. 

Third, it is lightning fast. I have 
never seen anything even coming 
close, on a micro or a mainframe. 
You would not believe this screen 
redrawing speed is possible, blitter 
or not. The search and replace 
functions are also faster than in 
any other ST program. Just in¬ 
credible. 

Fourth, it is addictive. Once 
you switch to it, using anything 
else is a pain. Give it a try and 
there is no way back (although it is 
not cheap at discounted prices 
around $30-$40). 

There is nothing to criticize in 
the implementation of this pro¬ 
gram; in the design area few im¬ 


CN REVIEW 


provements may come to mind. 
The feature I am miss most is the 
possibility of redefining the key 
bindings for the editor functions, 
but this is a complaint I have about 
every editor or word processor on 
the ST. 

In the meantime... 

While others are coming up 
with new hardware or software, 
Apple is running around and suing 
everybody in sight for the “Macin¬ 
tosh look and feel” in their pro¬ 
grams (the said “look and feel” did 
not even originate in their pro¬ 
ducts, as Xerox was first here). 
There are two ways of staying 
ahead of competition on the mar¬ 
ket. One is to develop better pro¬ 
ducts, and the other is to disturb 
others trying to develop better 
products. 

What Apple does is just pathe¬ 
tic. The next thing they may want 
to do is to claim rights to the 
rectangular shape of the computer 
screen. The outcome of this legal 
squirmish may influence very sig¬ 
nificantly the next few years on the 
microcomputer field, and we may 
be also affected by it. 

Distributors of the 
products mentioned: 

NeoDesk. Gribnif Software, 
P.O.Box 350, Hadley, MA 01035. 

Desktop Publisher. Timeworks, 
Inc., 444 Lake Cook Rd., Deer¬ 
field, IL 60015, (312)948-9202. 

Fontz! Neocept, 908 Camino 
Dos Rios, Thousand Oaks, CA 
91630, (805)498-3840. 

GEMFED: available on GEnie, 
CompuServe, many bulletin boards 
and on the CN Public Domain Disk 
No.127. 

Tempus: Eidersoft USA Inc., 
P.O.Box 288, Burgettstown, PA 
15021. 


Page 38 


CURRENT NOTES 


June 1988 









* * $ P r-.2£ yygg mm «H| imm mm, 

f L m tat f BL BL..JBL JB 

rn \£C COMPl! LDW BASIC COMPILER 


doms. m 


. 


looicftt msim moms, me 


BASIC REV. 1.1 


BASIC REV. 2.0 


AND EASIER. 

LDW BASIC is a powerful, integrated programming tool 
that lets you edit, compile, and execute your BASIC pro¬ 
grams without exiting to the desktop. It also creates a 
program file which can be executed directly from the desktop. 
You will never have to load the BASIC language interpreter 
or run-time module to execute your program. 

LDW BASIC Rev. 2.0 is very easy to use, yet it’s more 
powerful than any other development system for the Atari 
ST. It supports a fill set of high level GEM access statements 
and functions which let you: 

H Create and use your own windows, menus, dialog 
boxes, buttons, edit fields and check boxes. 

■ Use desk accessories while running your BASIC 
program. 

■ Design your own mouse pointer shapes and icons. 

■ Trap GEM events. 

You get all this and much more. No more PEEKs/POKEs 
to access GEM. Among the supported statements are: 
ACTIVEW, ALERT, ASK FILE, ASK MOUSE, BOX, 
BUTTON, DIALOG, DRAW ICON, EDIT FIELD, 
EVENT, INFOW, MENU, MOUSE, ON DIALOG, ON 
MENU, ON MOUSE, REDRAW, TITLEW, WINDOW and 
about 40 more new statements. 

LDW BASIC Rev. 2.0 is a stand-alone development tool, 
but it can also compile any program written using the old 
ST BASIC interpreter or the new ST BASIC interpreter. It 
is also functionally compatible with BASICs for the 
Macintosh. 


For more information or to obtain a listing of benchmarks contact 
Logical Design Works, Inc., (408) 435-1445 

/t.~ __ i /m /? i f\n co 


Compare the following benchmarks and see why LDW BASIC 
Rev. 2.0 leaves the competition behind! 


383 



16 



CALC - BYTE MAGAZINE BENCHMARK MAY 85 


ONLY 

$3995 


Please add shipping & handling costs 

U.S. 

Canada . 

Outside U.S. and Canada 


Contact your local Dealer or send check or money order to: 


2.00 

5.00 

10.00 


_ “ “ “ Logical Design Works, Inc. 

780 Montague Expwy., Suite 403 
San Jose, California 95131 U.S.A. 
























































ATARI ST/MEGA 


CN REVIEW 


AWARD MAKER PLUS 

For Awards With A DIY Twist 

Review by Bi/iMoes 


We all know how important it is 
to show a little appreciation to 
those around us. Everyone likes a 
little recognition. Maybe a smile 
will do. Or perhaps we say a word 
or two. And when we need some¬ 
thing more tangible, something 
that will last longer than a 
moment’s memory, ST users have 
no shortage of possibilities. 

Award Maker P/us, a recent 
release from Baudville, has awards 
and certificates for many occa¬ 
sions. Nothing surprising there, 
right? And, yes, we’ve already 
seen another product, Certificate 
Maker (CN Sept. 1987), do the 
same thing. But wait: Award Maker 
goes another step. And it’s a step 
that should appeal to do-it-your¬ 
self fans everywhere. 

In addition to the software’s 10 
built-in award borders, you can 
design you own. And if you’re not 
really excited with any of the 
illustrations on the standard awards 
and certificates, you can, again, 
create your own. This program, 
then, offers the potential for an 
infinite assortment of borders and 
graphics for your awards. 

Options. Putting an award 
together is simple. You’ll choose: 
award style (286 available, 
although many are merely slight 
variations); title font (4); title text; 
name/text font (4); name; text; 
signature; date; border style (10 
plus your own); and border color, 
for those with a color printer. 

Of the 286 award styles, four 
generic awards allow you to import 
your own pictures. These picture 
files must be Degas format, but 
can be any resolution (low, 
medium, or high). A name list can 
be used for multiple awards. Dri¬ 
vers are supplied for many dot¬ 
matrix printers and the adventur¬ 
ous may even alter a driver. The 
program runs on either a color 
or monochrome monitor. 


After you’ve typed your text 
and finished with all selections, 
you’re ready to print the award. If 
you want to see what it all looks 
like first, preview it. One view will 
show the full award at a smaller 
view. Click on the GEM window’s 
full-box and you’ll be able to see 
a magnified image. This full¬ 
screen window is especially useful 
when you’re using your own bor¬ 
ders or graphics and you want to 
make sure it all looks right. 

Borders and Graphics. 
Creating a border, especially the 
first one, is not easy and the 
documentation’s explanation is 
both wrong and very insufficient. A 
border uses a 60 X 120 pixel 
section. (I successfully used a 60 
X 121 area. A Baudville spokes¬ 
man said that a slight variation 
may be necessary due to the way 
Degas Elite is used to pick up the 
image.) The border section you 
draw will be the top left corner and 
a straight section. The lower half 
of your drawing will be the straight 


I File 


Nane List 


Printer 


section to be repeated along the 
sides. The top left corner will be 
turned to fit the other corners. 
Borders must be created with 
Degas E/ite, medium or high reso¬ 
lution, and saved in *.ICN block 
format. 

I spent several hours putting 
my first border together and it took 
a lot of tedious pixel-by-pixel 
work and much switching from 
Degas to Award Maker and back. It 
seems best to make your first 
border a simple two-line frame. 
Once that simple border is correct, 
you’ll find more complicated bor¬ 
ders to be easier in design. 

It’s very important to carefully 
count pixels as you put your 
design together. A mistake in 
counting by just one pixel means 
your border may not match up as it 
goes around the award. Degas 
Elite’s magnification mode is very 
useful in this process. It’s some¬ 
what demanding, but designing 
your own borders does work and it 
offers some exciting possibilities in 



Menu Screen from Award Maker 


Page 40 


CURRENT NOTES 


June 1988 


















































































ATARI ST/MEGA 


CN REVIEW 


creating awards. It’s too bad 
Baudville didn’t include a template 
screen and some suggestions for 
creating borders. Border design, a 
bit of a challenge, will probably 
only be used by a few brave, and 
persistent, souls. 

Including your own graphics, 
however, is simplicity itself. Just 
click on “Import Picture” and then 
the file name. Any non-com- 
pressed Degas format file can be 
used. Award Maker will then con¬ 
vert the image to high resolution. 
You may need to adjust colors first 
as dark backgrounds can obscure 
the graphics. Be sure to preview 
your award in magnified mode 
before you make any final judg¬ 
ments. 

Documentation. The ST- 
specific eight-page brochure gets 
you through the options. A 
separate 32-page booklet shows 
the various font, border, and award 


styles available. The award styles 
include those for academic, fam¬ 
ily, sports, humorous, and general 
topics. 

Negatives. Documentation 
claims the two-disk package sup¬ 
ports two drives. Not so. You’ll 
need to pull program disk “A” and 
insert library disk “B” in your boot 
drive. A second drive can be used, 
however, for your own data disks. 
Also, unfortunately, you cannot 
preview your award until you’ve 
gone through all the options, 
although this does give the pro¬ 
gram a speed its competition 
lacks. Award Maker doesn’t offer 
much in the way of canned humor 
and the software is copy-protec¬ 
ted. 

Comparison and Summary. 

The ST now has two major players 
in this specialized market, both 
easily used. The first, Certificate 
Maker, includes many humorous 


awards and has a supplemental 
disk available to increase the certi¬ 
ficate topics. This is one for those 
who want a good collection ready 
to go. 

Award Maker P/us ($39.95) 
offers a reasonably complete cer¬ 
tificate collection. Especially note¬ 
worthy are the exciting and crea¬ 
tive opportunities for personalized 
borders and illustrations. Once you 
get through the initial detail work in 
setting up that first border and 
think about the possibilities with 
your own art, clip art, or digitized 
pictures in those borders and cer¬ 
tificate illustrations, you’ll begin to 
appreciate the capabilities of this 
one. Award Maker, a program that 
deserves the Plus. 

[Baudvi/ie, 5380 52nd Street SB 
Grand Rapids, Mi 49508 (616) 
698-0888.J 



Desktop Ability Plus More! 

From Within Application Programs 

Replaces Standard Item Selector Found 
In Most Programs 


Perform These Functions From Within 
An Application Program 


WANTED: Application & Design Software 
would like to publish or enhance to publish your 
Assembly Language ST program or utility. Send 
us a letter and describe your program and in¬ 
clude your day and night telephone number. 

No obligation. 


1 Set Drive Path 
1 Format a Disk 
1 Create a Folder 
1 Print a Disk Directory 
1 Info About Disk or Folder 
1 Delete Files or Folder 

• Wildcard File Delete 

> Rename Files or Folder 
1 Wildcard Extension Rename 
1 Move a Folder or File 

• Wildcard File Move 

’ Copy a Folder or File 
1 Wildcard File Copy 
1 Lock & Unlock Files 

• Wildcard Lock & Unlock 


Universal™ Item Selector 




Application & Design Software 

A Part of Mac Donald Associates 
226 NW 'F Street, Grants Pass, OR 97526 




Visa or Mastercard Orders: 


(503) 476-0071 Noon to 5 PM PST Weekdays 


June 1988 


CURRENT NOTES 


Page 41 




























ATARI ST/MEGA 


CN REVIEW 

The Telecom Dream: 

The Nite Lite Multiline BBS Running on one ST 

Review by Ed Seward 

For several years quite a few 
members of the Atari community 
have been asking for a multiline 
BBS capable of running on an ST. 

In March, NOVATARI purchased 
the Nite Lite Multiline BBS which 
provided the required interface and 
software. This was followed on 
April 17th with the combining of 
the ARMUDIC BBS and WAACE ST 
BBS under the ARMUDIC name. 
Thus, instead of running two 
separate BBS’ (one for 8-bit Atari 
owners and another for ST owners) 
with one phone line each, we now 
have one BBS with four phone 
lines running on one ST system. 
(The interface we are using will 
allow up to seven lines.) 

Nite Lite BBS software 

The Nite Lite Multiline BBS 
software comes on two single¬ 
sided disks with two manuals. One 
disk contains the executable files 
and the other the Personal Pascal 
source code to the programs. The 
smaller manual covers the inter¬ 
face commands that are available 
and the bigger manual explains the 
setting up of the BBS and the 
many commands that are avail¬ 
able. (One of these days I’ll have 
to read the smaller manual.) 

With most BBSs one gets a 
generic set of menus. No menus, 
however, come with the Nite Lite 
software. The flexibilty of the pro¬ 
gram, of course, allows the opera¬ 
tor to build his own menus, but a 
few sample sets of menus would 
help certainly help people who 
have never run a BBS before. I’ve 
set up BBSs using FoReM, BBS 
Express ST and Nite Lite. It takes 
longer to set up a Nite Lite BBS 
but that is due entirely to the 
greater freedom given the sysop. 

1 will just mention some of the 
features of the Nite Lite BBS pro¬ 
gram. It would literally take a book 
to cover 88 commands available to 
the sysop to control various 
aspects of the BBS. Note that 
these commands do not include 
the built-in commands such as 

those used in the chat, file and 
message areas. The sysop has 
TOTAL control over the menu 
structure of the BBS. Of course, 
the sysop will have to write his 
own help files for his BBS since 
the help file contents will be 
determined by how the sysop sets 
up the BBS. 

An example of the flexibility of 
Nite Lite is the handling of the 
various file and message areas 
that can be made accessible. For 
ARMUDIC, 1 have the message 
bases divided into three areas. 
The main Message Menu has 
three message bases with com¬ 
mands to call up the menu for the 
8-bit specific message bases and 
ST specific messages. The main 
File Menu has the upload com¬ 
mands, the commands to access 
the 8-bit file areas as well as the 
ST file areas. 1 could just as easily 
have had an 8-bit only menu un¬ 
der which the 8-bit file and mes¬ 
sage areas would be accessed 
and a similar set up for the ST 
users. 1 could also have had in¬ 
dividual menus for accessing just 
related file and message areas, 
say the Magic SAC message base 
and file area on one menu, an 
Adventurers message base and 
file area on another menu, etc. In 
fact, you could use all these 
options on one BBS although that 
would make it a little messy for the 
caller. 

There is a chat room for all the 
callers to get together. You can 
also link several Nite Lite BBS’ for 
a ‘Linked Chat Room’ where 
everybody on each linked BBS 
can chat with everybody else. 
There are 36 access levels allowed 
with each level being shown a 
different main menu. 1 use this 
capability to provide the club pre¬ 
sidents with their own private 
message base which is accessed 
from the main menu that they see. 

The Weak Points 

There are a few areas of this 
package that could use a little 

work. First, there is the part of the 
manual dealing with the initial 
setup of the BBS. 1 found a couple 
points relating to initializing the 
message area open to interpre¬ 
tation. 

Second, all message bases are 
kept in the same batch of files. 
Under this arrangement, a few very 
active message bases can cause 
messages in the slower areas to 
scroll off. 1 have not had a problem 
with this yet, but 1 feel uncomfor¬ 
table with it. 

Finally, there is the file area. 
The only transfer protocol suppor¬ 
ted is straight xmodem with 
checksum. The other areas of the 
BBS have quite a few commands 
to allow a tremendous amount of 
flexibility and the file area is on the 
bare bones side right now. 

The Callers’ Response 

Joe Waters suggested includ¬ 
ing some of the users’ remarks. 
Rather than just summarizing some 
of the responses, 1 have provided a 
sampling of the logoff remarks left 
on the BBS during our first month 
of operation. There were only a 
few negative remarks but I’ve in¬ 
cluded most of them here for the 
sake of a balanced review. 

® Trevor Williams, 11:24:55 pm 
Apr. 21, 1988: Ed, 1 know that 
this has been said, and that you 
probably can’t do anything 
about it. But it would be very 
nice if the system could tell 
users if there are any messages 
in a particular base or not. At 
least it lets you hit return to see 
the new messages. Also, in the 
file section, is there a way to 
see just the new files. 

® Steve Steinberg, 01:07:20 am 
Apr. 22, 1988: Would like to 
know why this board is in ASCII 
if its an Atari board? 

® Scott Robinson, 01:18:14 pm 
Apr. 22, 1988: Very nice, and 
fast! 

IS Tim Bladen, 03:52:06 pm Apr. 
22, 1988: 1 think this is an 

Page 42 

CURRENT NOTES 

June 1988 










CN REVIEW ATARI ST/MEGA 

improvement over WAACE 
[FoReM ST], A lot of nice 
features chat mode, all atari 
users together again, and faster 
response plus multiline. 

TS Ken Jacobs, 02:39:08 pm Apr. 
25, 1988: Definitely will take 
getting used to. Structure is 
quite different than FOREM. 
Also getting a lot more line 
noise than 1 used to. 

2? Herb Goertzel, 08:06:24 pm 
Apr. 27, 1988: 1 can’t say that 
I’m particularly fond of this BBS 
software. Is there any way to 
just list the files that are new 
instead of having to peruse the 
entire list and is there any way 
to have the file descriptions 
available as well as the file 
names? 

SAlexander Giannini, 04:59:49 
pm May 3, 1988: 1 really like the 
feel of the BBS. 

® Alexander Vachon, 12:30:03 
am May 6, 1988: 1 like this board 
better & better. 

S Brian Merrell, 08:23:46 am 

May 9, 1988: 1 liked your other 
BBS system (FoReM ST) better. 

Sysop’s Response 

Paul Swanson (Nite Lite Sys¬ 
tems) has been very helpful in 
answering my questions and still 
working to improve this great 
package. He has made several 
sets of command interpreter files 
avaiable to registered sysops— 
the best example being an inter¬ 
active multiplayer game. 1 feel that 
the Nite Lite multiline BBS soft¬ 
ware is a great package and 
recommend it (with the required 
interface of course) without hesi¬ 
tation. 

Hardware Required 

The hardware 1 mentioned 
above very briefly is being made 
and sold by Nite Lite Systems 
also. There are two types of inter¬ 
faces available at this time—the 
SPP408 allows for up to three 

phone lines and the SP808 allows 
up to seven. One of these inter¬ 
faces is required in order to have 
the multiline capability. The 65C02 
CPU and 8K ram buffer are the big 
reason the BBS is so fast because 
the ST doesn’t have to do all the 
work. 

[Nite Lite Systems, PO Box R, 
Billerica, MA 01821. Nite Lite Multi- 
line BBS software, $100. SP408 
Programmable interface, $199. 
SP808 Programmable interface, 

$349.J 

ARMUDIC & WAACE 
ST BBS’ 

Just a quick note for those that 
may not have heard about the new 
phone numbers for the ARMUDIC 
BBS (formerly the two BBS’ men¬ 
tioned above). The new number is 
573-9207 (still area code 703 for 
those outside the metro dialing 
area). 



The X pAivsioN Box 


Utilises both floppy and hard drives 


Will daisy chain extra external devices! 

208 W. California 

Call One Stop (217)337-7867 Urbana, IL. 61801 

We have great deals on both hardware and software Dealer inquiries welcome 


The Xpansion box w/iso watt ps $ 150.00 (CD Host adapter $ 

Adaptec 4000 MFM controller S 125.00 20 Meg Hard drive $ 

Adaptec 4070 RLL controller $ 150.00 30 Meg Hard drive $ 

3.5" DS Floppy Drive $ 150.00 5.25" DS Floppy Drive $ 


30 MEG SUBSYSTEM (includes Xpansion box. PS. Adaptec 4070 controller. 30 Meg HD and ICO adapter) $ 


150.00 

375.00 

400.00 

125.00 

800.00 


ASK ABOUT OUR DISCOUNTED PRICING ON 
SPECIALIZED SUBSYSTEMS 
ALL prices subject to change without notice 


_ 

June 1988 


CURRENT NOTES 


Page 43 



















ATARI ST/MEGA 


CN REVIEW 


WordUp 

The First Second-Generation Word Processor for the ST 

Re vie w by Mi/t Creighton 


Many of us expected this word 
processor years ago. What makes 
it different? It simply does some¬ 
thing no other word processor can 
do on Atari ST machines at pre¬ 
sent: WordUp provides multiple 
on-screen fonts in varying point 
sizes (each with a variety of type- 
styles) and, in addition, permits the 
integration of text and graphics in 
a single document. True, Microsoft 
Write provides multiple fonts but 
has no graphic integration capabi¬ 
lity and while 1ST Word Pius allows 
one to insert graphics, it has no 
multiple font capability. The closest 
you can come to WordUp from 
Neocept are desktop publishing 
programs such as Publishing Part¬ 
ner or Publisher and both of them 
lack true text editing capabilities. 
WordUp fills a unique market 
niche, but just how well does it 
accomplish its objectives? 

The program comes on three 
disks: a program disk and two 
system disks. The program disk 
contains most of the WordUp- 
specific files while the system 
disks invoke GDOS. One of the 
system disks is for those of us 
wallowing in the misery of owning 
only a single-sided drive(s) while 
the other is for the fat cats with a 
double-sided drive(s). There is 
also an “assign.sys” file provided 
for those with hard disks. The 
primary difference between the 
disks is that the double-sided ver¬ 
sion contains extended character 
sets. 

Setting up the program is no 
more difficult than setting up most 
other GDOS-based programs. 
Those of you who have done it 
before should have no problem, 
and those of you who have not 
should be able to get through it 
without too much difficulty as long 
as you use one of the pre-set 
versions provided on the disk. Just 
follow the installation instructions 


carefully. 

I might add at this point that 
this program was designed to 
work with Fontzi, the font-conver¬ 
ter also from Neocept. Fontzi per¬ 
mits you to convert Macintosh, 
Amiga, and even Degas fonts to 
GEM for use with WordUp in 
nearly any point size you want. 
The ads are somewhat misleading, 
however—especially the part 
about not having any problems! If 
you dare to climb down into the 
pit with the dreaded G DOS- 
monster, you had better be a 
seasoned warrior. Neophytes to 
the computer-world would be 
well-advised not to tamper with 
their fonts or their assign.sys files 
until they have earned their spurs. 

Now that I have identified all 
the jazzy features and posted the 
appropriate warning notices, it is 
time to confront the program itself. 
Just how well does WordUp do 
what it is advertised to do? The 
answer is that WordUp has both 
good and bad points: I found the 
design concepts to be superior 
while the implementation fell 
below expectations. 


For example, the cursor 
movement features are surperb. 
One can move word-by-word, 
move to the beginning or end of a 
line, move to the top or bottom of 
a screen, or go to a specific page. 
Placement of the cursor with the 
mouse is the best I’ve seen out¬ 
side of Microsoft Write. Unfor¬ 
tunately, the screen update speed 
is slow and the scrolling is clumsy. 
Most of these particular problems 
are not the fault of Neocept but 
come about because the screen 
has to be handled as a user- 
defined graphics image. It is still 
irritating, however, to watch help¬ 
lessly while the backspace key 
eats half the sentence I so care¬ 
fully crafted. Also, the slider bar 
operates fitfully unless you have 
turned on the option to have it 
behave properly, in which case the 
whole program moves at the 
speed of molasses. 

I found that a number of my 
desk accessories interfered with 
WordUp, causing the program to 
crash. In addition, if I got too far 
ahead of the type-ahead buffer 
with scrolling and cursor move- 


Desk File Edit Fornat Font 


r*r—n 


. : fH.H .H 

pi ~ 

r— 

►*“ 

r— 

r “ 

NJ _ 


Special 


Footnote... 


Window Preferences 


(who may have no interest or training: 

in the particular job) to he used in a 

job for which he or she is better 

trained.PE 

PE 

PE 

* t (| Return on Hunan Resoui 

x ' SFPro-flts on csc.lt HR $ 



graphic Options*,, 

Hail Herge,,, 

A H 

Master Page... 

, Shft A M 

Page Nunber... 

, Shft A P 

Date... 

Shft A D 

Tine.., 

Shft A T 


M M | i I i i I 'I I I T I I 

| 



Page 44 


CURRENT NOTES 


June 1988 





















































CN REVIEW ATARI ST/MEGA 


merit commands, WordUp would sometimes crash. 
Later versions will undoubtedly correct this. In fact, 
there is already a new version out that corrects one 
bug which did not permit using more than one 
graphic image per page. As an aside, Neocept has an 
interesting technical support policy. You get 60 days 
of free support over the telephone (a non toll-free 
telephone number is given in the manual) after which 
you have to pay a fee of $25 to get another year of 
support. Neocept will, however, answer written 
requests for help from registered owners without 
requiring a fee. It’s not a bad arrangement. 

WordUp uses paragraph markers to separate 
paragraphs and a separate carrage return to separate 
individual lines of text (in an address, for example). 
Since you can set the amount of white space 
between paragraphs and the line spacing can be set 
separately, you have to make sure you use the 
correct command. Non-printing markers are placed 
on the screen where these commands are used. The 
resulting flexibility has all sorts of ramifications. 

WordUp has left justify, full justify, and center 
commands but no flush right command. The block 
commands are slow but complete. The formatting for 
justification and margins is the best I’ve seen on any 
word processor to date. The drop-down menus all 
have keyboard equivalents. It does have a rudimen¬ 
tary on-line help feature, but no spelling checker or 
thesaurus. 

WordUp has basic, but functional, mail merge 
features. Its search capabilities are very powerful. Its 
footnoting is manual rather than automatic (no 
renumbering). It has a macro feature that employs a 
glossary technique, similar to Microsoft Write, (power¬ 
ful but not my favorite). WordUp makes use of master 
pages for headers, footers, and page numbers—a 
very nice feature with lots of flexibility. It does not, 
however, give the program a true double-column 
capability as the manual claims. You can import and 
export ASCII files and the file menu has some unusual 
commands to permit formatting of a disk or checking 
disk space. Another nice feature. 

As advertised, you can import DEGAS high- 
resolution, Neochrome, or GEM Image files into 
WordUp, insert them in the middle of you text, and 
then watch the text flow around the image. There are 
some limitations, however. Since WordUp was written 
to emphasize its text handling features, placing the 
image is not as easy as in a desktop publishing 
program. It is possible to crop the image and scale it, 
but the “move” command was removed some time 
before release through it is still referred to in the 
manual. The “read.me” file on the disk says that it 
was found that using the block commands was easier 
than using the "move” command and the command 
was removed to eliminate redundancy. I suspect the 
truth of the matter may be that the “move” command 
did not work properly because I cannot imagine how 
it could have been more clumsy than using the block 


commands. I also found that the graphics are touchy 
and can cause WordUp to crash. In addition, on one 
occasion, resizing of the image caused a number of 
characters from the international character set to be 
sprinkled throughout my text. That is definitely not 
one of my favorite features. 

The Bottom Line: Is WordUp worth its $80 price 
tag? Overall, I would have to say that it is, in spite of 
its lack of a spelling checker or a thesaurus. It isn’t as 
powerful as WordPerfect or WordWriter ST, but it will 
do things they won’t. It doesn’t appear to be as 
bug-free as Microsoft Write, but it has additional 
capabilities and isn’t nearly as expensive (and you do 
get an FX-80 GDOS driver). It doesn’t have the page 
layout capability of Publisher, but it has substantially 
better text-editing features. As I said earlier, it fills a 
niche. It is the first of the second-generation word 
processors to come and, like all new advances, it 
broadens the horizon by redefining what we will 
come to expect in the future. 


"I used to feel like 
a dummy. But 
with The Atari ST 
Book, / can do all 
sorts of nifty 
things, like embed 
printer codes in 
text, or use a word 
processor to alter 
BEFORE my desktopjnf file." AFTER 

In the past, many of the ST's features and capabilities 
hadn't been adequately explained in language that the 
average user could understand. But now The Atari SZ 
Book o f Tips . lMtrij£ti2ni, Secrets and Hints for the 
520., IQ4Q and Me_g a £Ts provides step-by-step 
instructions that help both beginning and experienced 
users get the most out of their STs. And no 
knowledge of programming is required! 

Covers Item Selector and desktop tricks, printers, 
modems, Control Panel palette settings, RAM disks, 
files, AUTO folders, copying, desk accessories, cold 
& warm boots, installing applications, free software, 
word processors, chess, and a list of over 30 
magazines (Worldwide) with ST coverage. 159 pages 

The Atari ST Book, by 

Ralph C. Turner. $16.95 in check 
or money order from a U.S. bank. 

(Includes shipping and handling to North 
America. Europe add $4.00 for air mail.) 

Index Legalis Publishing Co., P.O. 

Box 1822-9, Fairfield, IA 52556. 

© Copyright 1988 by Ralph C. Turner 





June 1988 


CURRENT NOTES 


Page 45 
















ATARI ST/MEGA 


CN REVIEW 

CYBER CONTROL 

The CAD-3D Motion Control Language 

Review by Bi//Moes 

Soon after the ST, two names 
joined: CAD-3D ... Tom Hudson. The 
first excited. The second guaranteed 
quality. 

Later, a major update/revision, 
Cyber Studio (CN Sept. 1987), was 
released which included the capabi¬ 
lity of creating sophisticated anima¬ 
tions with CAD-3D 2.0 and editing 
those animations with a new 
language, Cybermate. And then 
Cyber Paint (CN Ap. 1988) threw 
open the box, allowing the fireworks 
from various animation forms in a 
single film. Today, with the additional 
support disks available, ST users 
have a powerful combination of gra¬ 
phics and animation not available 
anywhere else. 

Yet with Cyber Studio it’s still a 
tedious task to actually create much 
in the way of an animation. Creating 
an animation can easily take hours. 
Hours of carefully moving or turning 
an object and then saving the 
screen. And then moving or turning 
an object and then .... Frame by 
frame by frame by .... ‘Tis a problem. 

Cyber Controi is the solution. 
Written by Tom Hudson, it not only 
can be used to tackle the tedious, 
but can be used to create anima¬ 
tions not at all possible otherwise. If 
you’re seriously interested in deve¬ 
loping animations with the Cyber 
Studio package, take a look at this 
one. 

Cyber Controi which installs as 
a desk accessory, is used as a 
BASIC-like programming language. 
Its programming commands include 
the familiar: FOR/NEXT, IF/THEN, 
GOTO, GOSUB/RETURN. When it’s 
clicked on, you’ll have a clear text 
window over nearly all of the screen 
and you’ll enter the language com¬ 
mands to develop the program. 
There are no line numbers; you’ll use 
labels for program segments. Cyber 
Control includes specific reserved 
commands for: movement of the 
cameras (16 commands); object 

manipulation (33); lighting (4); spline 
and hierarchy (8); animation record¬ 
ing (7); and miscellaneous (15). In¬ 
cluding the additional programming 
commands, more than 100 com¬ 
mands are available. 

As you write the program, using 
up to 128 variables, you’re telling 
CAD--3D exactly what you want 
done for each frame. After you’ve 
written the program creating your 
CAD-3D animation and SAVEd it, 
click on RUN, located on the upper 
Cyber Control bar. The syntax 

of your file will be checked; the 
check will stop at a mistake. When 
the syntax is correct, the program 
will run and the animation will be 
created. 

It is not possible for Cyber Con¬ 
trol’s syntax check to point out 
errors you might make within an 
animation, such as moving objects 
outside the CAD-3D universe. If an 
error shows up during the run, the 
program will stop and you’ll be 
dumped back on Cyber Control’s 
editing screen. One of the 45 pos¬ 
sible error messages will be dis¬ 
played and the cursor will mark the 
offending line. 

As a programming language, 
Cyber Control has very good flexi¬ 
bility. Much that is possible in CAD- 
30, such as loading templates for 
spin or extrude, a partial spin, object 
movement, scaling or rotation, 
creating primitives, light manipula¬ 
tion, (the list goes on) will all be 
possible from Cyber Control. 

But these possibilities from 
CAD-3D we already know. What 
about the unknown? Step into 
Cyber Control. 

Cyber Control offers additional 
animation commands to help you 
develop sophisticated shows. Some 
of these are easily understood. Oth¬ 
ers are not. 

Spline. A spline is a smooth 
curve defined by naming points 
along that curve. There are three 

types of splines possible: linear 
(straight point to point), B-spline (a 
gentle curve in the space between 
the named points), and S-spline (an 
exaggerated curve to go through the 
points). After the splines have been 
defined, they can be used to move 
objects, cameras, or lights during 
your animations. 

Cameras. Three cameras are 
available. One is the normal CAD- 
30 camera, fixed in space. The 
second camera can be placed any¬ 
where in the CAD-3D universe (x, y, 
and z axes) and then pointed any¬ 
where else. You can also name the 
camera #2 bank angle. The third 
camera is similar to camera #2 and 
can be placed anywhere in the 
universe. It differs from camera #2 in 
that, in addition to placing the 
camera anywhere, you specify the 
camera’s heading, pitch, and bank 
angles. Camera #3 could, therefore, 
be used to simulate aircraft flight. 
This third camera also allows you to 
set the focus, or how far objects 
appear from the screen when you’re 
using stereo separation. If you’re not 
creating stereo views, the focus 
adjustment will have no effect. 

Hierarchial Tree. Take a look 
at your hand. Flex the fingers. Move 
your wrist. Notice how they’re all tied 
together by joints? (Sounds like a 
3rd grade science class.) Anyway. 
With a hierarchical tree you can 
create animated objects that seem 
to be hinged together, such as a 
flexing hand or a walking body. 

Creating a hierarchical tree is an 
involved process. The steps include: 
(a.) naming the objects you want 
shown; (b.) limiting the movement 
so that objects don’t bend the wrong 
way (optional); (c.) putting the parts 
together by telling how they relate to 
each other; (d.) stating the order of 
rotation (optional); (e.) positioning 
the joints to be changed or moved; 
and (f.) moving the objects. Yes, it’s 
just as complicated as it sounds. 

Page 46 

CURRENT NOTES 

June 1988 







CN REVIEW ATARI ST/MEGA 


Vertices and Faces. CAD-3D 
shapes are all made of triangular 
faces. This feature can be used to 
good advantage if you’re interested 
in creating objects on a detailed 
basis. After you’ve determined what 
your object should look like, you’ll 
give each vertex a number and list 
the coordinates in the CAD-3D 
universe. Then, each face is defined 
by listing the vertices it uses, noting 
whether the face’s edge line is to be 
shown, and stating the face’s color 
as taken from the CAD-3D color 
palette. It’s quite possible, using 
these tools, to create some very 
unusual objects. It requires typing 
many numbers, but it’s really not a 
very difficult process. 

Stand Alone. Most will use 
Cyber Control within CAD- 
30. However, it’s also pos¬ 
sible to use it by itself, out¬ 
side of CAD-3D. With the 
varied and flexible language 
commands, you can load a 
Degas or Neo background 
and then bring in additional 
image/cel shapes (Degas 
Elite’s Block format) to be 
moved over the back¬ 
ground. As with normal 
CAD-3D animations, these 
cel animations can be 
recorded. This feature 
doesn’t rival full-fledged 
animation programs, but it’s easily 
done. The backgrounds and cel im¬ 
ages also can be used in standard 
CAD-3D animations. 

Editing. Cyber Controls text 
manipulation capabilities seem suffi¬ 
cient for a modest editor in a pro¬ 
gramming language. You can do the 
usual load/save or merge. There’s a 
search for strings, not case sensitive. 
Keys move you to the start/end of a 
line and up or down a page. You can 
mark text blocks to cut and paste. 
Text files can be printed. Lines can 
have up to 75 characters. 

Documentation. The 176 
pages, which fit into your binder 
from Cyber Studio, explain the soft¬ 
ware quite well. Well-illustrated 
tutorials and demos guide you 
through the program’s capabilities 
and the reference section explains 
the commands available. An appen¬ 


dix by Hudson offers additional 
ideas and takes a stab at explaining 
hierarchical object trees. Another 
appendix by Darrel Anderson offers 
tips on advanced object creation. 

Both Hudson and Anderson in¬ 
clude Cyber Control files you can 
use to create objects. Because the 
language allows INPUT statements, 
these object-creation files give you 
the chance to see how the pros 
develop programs and to then use 
their programs to create objects of 
your own. Hudson offers a file to 
create CAD-3D objects based on 
math functions and one to make coil 
springs. Anderson includes a file to 
create spline models and another 
one to extrude objects that follow 
the curved path of a spline. 


Other Notes. It should be 
obvious by now that Cyber Control 
is for the hard-core CAD-3D ani¬ 
mators. If you’re not sure about it all, 
you may want to take a look at an 
early, and very limited, version 
released in the public domain (CN 
ST Library disk 152). The PD version 
may offer a hint, but the real power 
of Cyber Control is understood only 
after use. 

And again, let it be clear: this is 
a programming language. If you’ve 
done any work with BASIC, you’ll 
recognize many familiar commands. 
Even programmers of other 
languages will be somewhat com¬ 
fortable. Non-programmers, though, 
may have a tougher time. The 
documentation is not a program¬ 
ming primer. 

Parts of Cyber Control axe rela¬ 
tively easy to understand and use. 
For example, using it as a stand¬ 


alone cel animator is straight-for¬ 
ward. And the development and ani¬ 
mation of standard CAD-3D objects 
is not difficult. Cyber Control defini¬ 
tely relieves the tedium of long hours 
spent watching final versions of Su¬ 
perview line on endlessly. 

Using splines, though, may be a 
bit of a challenge for some. And 
manipulating the hierarchical object 
tree is best left to the forest rangers. 

It’s very easy to make changes 
in the Cyber Control file. The wire¬ 
frame mode, quickly drawn, is useful 
in previewing your animations. Then, 
after all is set, you can change from 
wireframe to solid mode, add the 
Record commands, and record your 
animation. 

Although not absolutely necess¬ 
ary, you’ll find it extremely 
helpful to have version 2.02 
of CAD-3D. This later ver¬ 
sion allows you to use all of 
the Cyber Control com¬ 
mands and permits up to 80 
objects in CAD-3D memory. 
If you purchase Cyber Con¬ 
trol, you can send in the 
warranty card with the ori¬ 
ginal CAD-3D 2.0 disk and 
get the CAD-3D 2.02 
upgrade free. Otherwise, it’s 
$5.00. An updated version 
of the animation editing 
language, Cybermate, 
requires $5.00. Cyber Control, not 
copy protected, will work with one 
SS drive, although two drives are 
highly recommended. 

Summary. Cyber Control 
($59.95) greatly eases the task of 
recording CAD-3D animations. In 
addition to the standard CAD-3D 
object creation and manipulation 
steps, it introduces several new and 
exciting possibilities for your anima¬ 
tions: three cameras to dynamically 
spy on the scene, spline paths for 
cameras, lights, and objects to fol¬ 
low during a film, and the hierarchi¬ 
cal connection for object sets. It’s 
not all easy, but it’s all possible with 
this sophisticated and flexible soft¬ 
ware. 

rThe Catalog, Antic Publishing, 644 
Second St., San Francisco, CA 
94107(415)957-0886] 


o |=iE 


i si 

iiiiSi: 

5 5 = £ 

iiiiliiiiliiiii Line * 60881 

s 

jlL 

Load 

1 

n 

Save M Merge H Clear 1:1 Print 11 Find f:l Run. IS 

I 


Desk File Colors Views Bljects 


^rst anination—create shapes and look at thenS 

View Hire:Draft:;set viewing nodes to wire frane and drafts 
Canl 0,0.8: Jset the canera to begin positions 
Sph2 ball.TS 

Hedge wd,7:Cube cubel,14S 
Zoon 180:Perspec 500S 
Direct A,7,56,8,58.‘Direct B,4, -58,0,-58S 
Lton A:Lton B:Anbient 3S 
Hatch On:SuperviewS 
For lewp=i to IBS 
Cirgrp:Select oal1:Xlate 250.B.8S 
Clrjrp'StUct whXlate 0,6,2»: 

ClrgrpiSelect cubel:Xlate -256,6,83 
A1lorp:SuperviewS 
Next IevpS 

JRotate one shape: the cubeS 
For lewp=i to IBS 

Deselect ball,wd:Rotate 18,0,0:Select ball,wdS 
SuperviewS 


June 1988 


CURRENT NOTES 


Page 47 









































ATARI ST/MEGA CN REVIEW 

IMPOSSIBLE MISSION II 

Evil Elvin Strikes Back 

By Dan Greenb/att 

Good morning, Field Agent 
Bravo 29. Your mission, should you 
choose to accept it, is to neutralize 

Professor Elvin Atombender . 

again. This time he has construc¬ 
ted a computer that will break the 
launch codes to our nuclear mis¬ 
siles in eight hours. You must 
break into his West L.A. tower 
complex and destroy the com¬ 
puter. 

Sounds easy, right? 1 mean, 
this is the 25th century, and you’re 
only a veteran of Operation Cobra 
Blue, created just in case Atom- 
bender did this sort of thing again. 
Well, obviously it isn’t easy, as this 
is called Impossible Mission II. (The 
first Impossible Mission was never 
made for either Atari line.) Why so 
impossible? Because good old 
psychotic Elvin has eight towers 
surrounding the one with the 
code-cracking computer, all of 
which are fraught with danger. 
Danger, in this case, means a 
collection of robots guarding every 
room and its contents with a pas¬ 
sion. There are electrified sentry 
robots that are equipped with 
lasers that will turn the unsuspect¬ 
ing agent into grilled cheese. 
Bashbots will push intruders off 
ledges into space or crush them 
against walls. Suicidebots do the 
same thing, only they will die with 
the intruder as it pushes him over 
the ledge. And Minebots leave 
deadly mines that explode when a 
human steps on them. 

The layout of each room is 
simple. Besides robots, each room 
contains ledges, elevators, floors 
that can shift from one side to the 
other, computer terminals, and 
various objects. In order to pro¬ 
gress from one tower to another, 
the objects must be searched for a 
portion of a three-digit passcode 
that will open the security doors to 
the adjacent towers. Objects can 
also yield security commands, 

extra time, or nothing at all. 
Objects can only be searched 
once, and many passcodes you 
find will not work, as there are 
some 9-20 of them scattered 
throughout each tower. In addi¬ 
tion, each number can only go in 
one place in the code, as indica¬ 
ted by its color. Colors are not 
interchangeable. (For example, if 
the code is green 6, red 8, blue 4, 
and you have green 4, red 6, blue 
8, then your computer will not 
register success.) 

computer. This may seem to be 
easy to avoid. Believe me, it isn’t. 
Every time you are zapped or 
crushed or otherwise killed, five 
minutes is deducted from your 8 
hours. This may not appear to be 
much, but if you die six times 
trying to negotiate one room, that’s 
a half-hour down the tubes! 

Your clock is constantly run¬ 
ning, too, so time can become a 
real problem in the later stages of 
the game. On top of ail that, you 
only get 30 minutes of real-time in 
each tower, so you can’t wait 
around and play cautiously for too 
long. 

In any case, passcodes are not 
the only thing you need to defeat 
Elvin in under eight hours. You 
also need music. In each tower, 
one room contains a safe. This 
safe has a musical sequence in it. 
To open the same, the time bomb 
security command must be used, 
the bomb must be dropped, and 
the agent must be away from the 
explosion that results. The safe 
must still be searched for the 
music. There are six musical 
sequences in all, along with two 
duplicates. To enter the central 
tower, all six musical sequences 
must be played off your tape 
recorder. This device is built into 
your pocket computer, which also 
helps you assemble the passcodes 
connecting the towers. Once the 
six pieces are played, you can 
enter the express elevator to the 
central tower. 

This is the final phase. In this 
ordinary-looking penthouse room, 
there are three terminals side by 
side in the center. Access the right 
one, the codes are disarmed and 
the world is saved. Access the 
wrong one, and you feel the awe¬ 
some power of a 2200 volt electric 
shock. 

Simple, right? That’s why they 
call it impossible. And believe me, 

...Any arcade master will 
love this game, as the 
action is almost always 
intense. It is also quite 
intensely difficult... 

The best way to defeat the 
robots’ purpose is to dodge or 
jump over them. However, other 
ways exist. Elvin built a security 
system into his towers, and this 
can be used against him. This is 
where the security commands 
come in. There are six commands. 
The lift-reset command will set the 
lift-platforms in the room at their 
original positions as defined when 
you walked in. The platform com¬ 
mand moves adjustable floor seg¬ 
ments across the room, making 
some objects more accessible 
and dumping robots all over the 
place. The unplugged robot sym¬ 
bol disables every robot in the 
room for a period of time. The 
mine symbol arms a player’s mine 
that will explode when any robot 
(or the agent) steps on it. And the 
light symbol turns on the lights in 
any dark rooms in the tower. 

There is only one way to 
lose—if the 8 hours runs out 
before you deactivate the central 


Page 48 


CURRENT NOTES 


June 1988 











ATARI ST/MEGA 


CN REVIEW 


PRESCHOOL KIDPROGS 


Entertainment For The Young ST User 

Review by Roger Abram 


A feeling of impending doom 
always comes over me when buy¬ 
ing software for my kids. Let’s face 
it, the likes and dislikes of children 
are not only unpredictable, but 
change on a daily basis. Spending 
$20 to $40 on a program for them 
is like begging for trouble. 

Take my four year old, for 
example. For weeks on end all she 
has wanted for lunch was a grilled 
cheese sandwich. Then last week 
she came to the conclusion she 
hated them. Now she’s on a 
cheese hot dog kick. Who knows 
how long that will last? 

I do, however, have temporary 
judgement lapses and try my best 
to select a program that will either 
entertain my kids or teach them 
something. Whatever I decide to 
purchase, it has to be priced at a 
level that won’t send shockwaves 
through the Abram household 
should it either bomb out or not 
have staying power. 

Preschool KidProgs, by Mich- 
Tron, comes close to meeting my 
requirements. It’s main drawback is 
its price—it lists for $39.95. 

Programmed in GFA Basic by 
D.A. Brumleve, Preschool KidProgs 


is actually a collection of three 
bright and colorful programs 
designed to stimulate the deve¬ 
lopment of young children. The 
programs are completely mouse 
based and after some initial gui¬ 
dance, I did find that my four and 
six year olds could be pretty much 
left alone with the game. 

Of the three modules, Kidkeys 
is their favorite. The main screen 
for this program has a keyboard 
on it which you can select to be 
either a piano or organ. You can 
then click on the keys and make 
your own music or you can pick a 
tune to play from the program’s 
library. In all, there are twenty 
familiar tunes that my kids love to 
sing along with. There are such 
notables as “I’m A Little Tea Pot,” 
“Mary Had A Little Lamb,” “Three 
Blind Mice,” and “The Itsy-Bitsy 
Spider.” For moms and dads who 
may have forgotten a word or two, 
at least one verse of each song is 
printed in the manual. 

The second module, Kid- 
blocks, is an onscreen, multi¬ 
sided block puzzle featuring six 
different pictures. Initially, the 
blocks are all scrambled and the 


child has to click on each block 
until the desired side is displayed. 
When a picture is successfully 
arranged, music sometimes plays 
or the picture becomes animated. 

The last module, Kidgrid+, is a 
limited drawing program consisting 
of 192 triangles which can be filled 
with color to create your own 
pictures and designs. The twelve 
different colors appear in rectan¬ 
gles on the left side of the screen 
and the youngster only has to click 
on the appropriate box to select 
the color. The mouse is then 
moved to a triangle and clicked 
again. The triangle changes to the 
new color. 

My children thoroughly enjoy 
Preschool KidProgs and I would 
recommend it to all young kids and 
their parents, if not for its price. A 
better buy would be Current Notes 
disk #211 which contains pro¬ 
grams for youngsters, including my 
four year old’s current favorite — 
KidPotato, also programmed by 
D.A. Brumleve. 

[MichTron, 576 South Te/egraph 
Pontiac, Michigan, 48053 (313) 
334-5700. Co/or monitor on/y.J 


Im possible Mis s ion II 

you will probably flounder for at 
least a week before figuring out all 
the little details of the game, and 
how to access everything. Average 
playing time is about 45 minutes. 
There is, fortunately, a save game 
feature allowing the player to quit 
and come back later after his/her 
nerves are reassembled. This 
game is very addictive. 

One complaint I had was the 
documentation, or lack thereof. 
More specifically, the docs are 
very vague in places. For example, 
I first thought after reading, “Tie 
together the musical sequences 


into a full melody,” that I should 
go back and shift the music 
around until I created a song. So I 
went back to the safe where I 
thought was the beginning of the 
song, and found I could not 
search again. I realized then that 
all I needed was the six pieces, in 
any order. I died trying to get out, 
and after escaping from the room I 
had only three seconds to reach 
the express elevator. Naturally, I 
didn’t make it. 

Another gripe I had was an 
odd quirk in the sound. On my 
520, it was fine. But when I 
hooked up my 1040, it acquired a 
whine and was muted drastically. 


But perhaps this is just my com¬ 
puter. 

And perhaps I also took the 
instructions too literally. Oh well. 
This game is too good to pass up. 
Any arcade master will love this 
game, as the action is almost 
always intense. It is also quite 
intensely difficult, and mastering it 
can be seen as a challenge. Buy 
Impossible Mission II and relish it. 
Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have a 
world to save. 

[Epyx, P.O. Box8020, 600 Galves¬ 
ton Drive, Redwood City, CA 
94063. Joystick and color monitor 
required.) 


June 1988 


CURRENT NOTES 


Page 49 













ATARI ST/MEGA 


CN REVIEW 


PH ANTASIE III 

You Can Nick A Disc, But You Can’t Nikademus 

Reviewed by Robert Mil/ard 


The current Dungeonmaster craze has cast other 
recent fantasy releases in a wan light. FTL’s compel¬ 
ling offering may prove to be “the” ST game, period, 
if a success formula of reputation times sales is 
applied. So Phantasie His promise of a do-or-die 
confrontation with the nefarious Nikademus might not 
elicit a battle roar from Atari gamers. Besides, 
although the original’s ST conversion was the first 
CRPG to exploit sixteen-bit graphics potential, Phan¬ 
tasie //seemed no more than a new plot in the same 
game system. But Phantasie ill - The Wrath of 
Nikademus is so graphically superior to its lineage, 
and makes such intelligent use of the ST machine, 
that dungeonmaster notwithstanding, it deserves 
attention. 

The title screen boots up, accompanied by the 
usual forgettable music (thankfully confined to the 
opening sequence), and credits designer Doug Wood 
as well as Westwood, the company handling the ST 
conversion. Westwood also handled Roadwar 2000 
and its busy, blurry graphics of North America. But 
they have obviously learned a lot about art on the ST 
since then. These graphics have a luster, depth, and 
clarity that trumps LDW’s efforts on the previous 
Phantasies. (This writer’s review of Phantasie i can be 
found in the May 1987 issue of Current Notes. Most of 
the game system descriptions therein apply to the 
latest release as well.) The major criticism of fantasy 
games these days is an overemphasis on graphics, 
but if The Bard’s Tale’s myriad monster pictures made 
that game a hit, Phantasie i/i’s arsenal of artfully- 
rendered adversaries should earn it a fair share of 
sales. 

Phantasie Hi’s game interface has been improved 
as well. Dialog boxes and statistical screens offer a 
more fluid maintenance of party members when in 
towns. Items can now be traded between characters 
without a complete party disbursement, though the 
system still has some flaws. The surface world map of 
Scandor, viewed through a smallish window, scrolls 
with no disk access. (Waiting for a new map screen to 
load in the previous Phantasies induced Sierra deja vu 
in some gamers.) Best of all, each dungeon can be 
saved separately. Previously, only one save was 
possible, so each dungeon had to be completely 
accomplished before proceeding to the next one. 
Disk access on the whole has been minimized, 


reflecting the same ease of play Westwood achieved 
with the RoadwarQ&mes. 

Doug Wood’s rather rigid game design seems to 
discourage radical changes, but the few new features 
are good ones. Each time a character advances a 
level, it can train in three of nine possible areas that 
include four thieving skills, three fighting skills, 
listening for monsters, and swimming. If a character 
can attack but not parry, or disarm a trap but not pick 
a lock, it was the gamer’s choice that made it so. 
Injuries are more complex, too. The right half of the 
game screen shows each party member’s name, 
magic points, hit points, and a human form with 
outstretched appendages that graphs each charac¬ 
ter’s injuries. A range of colors on each body part 
indicate the degree of injury. Reality factors determine 
options. Serious injury or loss of a right arm will 
prevent spell-casting or weapon-wielding. Leg in¬ 
juries will render a character down on the ground. In 
turn, the party members have a new combat option, 
aiming a blow at a critical body part, much like a 
hunter in The Bard’s Ta/e. And it can be accomplished 
with a long overdue addition to the game’s weaponry: 
the bow. 

For those unfamiliar with the game, Phantasie 
involves fighting many different monsters, mostly in 
dungeons that are simple overhead mazes. A battle 
switches to full screen, black background, with 
excellent party and monster pictures, limited anima¬ 
tion, and no tactical movement. (The new feature of 
party rank movement is largely abstract and not a 
major factor.) Towns are single screen and serve 
primarily for statistical maintenance. The surface 
world offers little exploration and discovery. The 
game’s important events occur in the dungeons. 
Though dungeon graphics are only simple lines and 
dots, the layout is usually clever, and the little puzzles 
and plot incidents therein are the game’s main appeal 
beyond combat and character development. 

Lately, discussion of CRPG plots is a can of 
wyrms that, in this review, will be opened for only a 
brief instant. A concensus of opinion on GENIE 
indicates that Phantasie /// is briefer and perhaps 
easier than the first two installments. There are still 
scrolls to find, special items to use, abstract charac¬ 
ters like Filmon and Lord Wood, netherworlds and 
planes, and puzzles. But the dungeon designs seem 


Page 50 


CURRENT NOTES 


June 1988 






ATARI ST/MEGA 


CN REVIEW 


less inspired; some are quite small and can be fully 
explored in a few minutes. If some fantasy games 
feel like War and Peace, Phantasie /// seems 
somewhat of a fast read. 

Yes, Phantasie /// is like / and // and so many 
other CRPG efforts: hack and slash, thrust and 
parry, and then some. And then some more. But it 
is the kind of polished, classy effort that Atari 
owners have historically accorded recognition. And 
it is the final chapter of the struggle against 
Nikademus. Yet, an incidental effect of the 
Dungeonmaster’s omniscient spell may cast the 
game into a sopor. Indeed, it may become a 
sleeper. 

Misty Writings —In my review of U/tima /<< I 
failed to mention an important feature that was 
added to the ST version: dungeon saves are 
possible! This is especially helpful in the abyss, 
and just before entering the codex. Evidently, few 
gamers are aware of the small text adventure in 
Roadwar 2000. If you defeat an invader death 
squad in tactical combat near Miami, there is a 
random (50 or 100 to one) chance of getting a 
plane, which will fly you to Nassau. That’s where 
the text adventure is ... If anybody needs help with 
any of the CRPGs I’ve reviewed in the past year, 
they can reach me on GENIE. 



For the Atari ST and IBM Compatibles 


The VERY BEST RentaI PoiNT-of-S aIe 
S ofTw are System on The MarIcet TodAy! 
So Many Great NEW Features, you'll 
never bEliEVE iT's sTill ONLY SI99. A 
MuIti-User Version is AVAilAblE foR 
MS-Dos Systems at a sliqhTly hiqhER price. 


Contact Your Local Dealer Today 


Also available are the Sales-Pro and Sales-Pro 
Plus Point-Of-Sale Systems, Fuel-Pro, Mail-Pro, 
Inventory-Pro and The Hi-Tech Church Manager. 


HI-TECH ADVISERS 

P.O. Box 7524 Winter Haven, FL 33883-7524 
TO ORDER CALL TOLL FREE: 

1 - 800 - 882-4310 

FLORIDA (813)294-1885 

ALL OTHER INQUIRIES (813)293-3986 


pgbo 


Atari ST Software 

Jinxter.$ 27 

Carrier Command.$ 33 

Universal Military Simulator..$ 33 

Block Buster.$ 27 

Harrier Combat Mission.$ 33 

Death Sword.$ 15 

Impossible Mission 2.$ 27 

Lords of Conquest.$ 15 

Rockford.$ 21 

Stellar Crusade.$ 36 

Gold of the Realm.$ 28 

Hunt for Red October.$ 33 

Alternate Reality ’City’.$ 27 

Alien Fires.$ 27 

Gunship.$ 33 

Mavis Beacon Type Tutor.$ 30 

Police Quest...$ 33 


Atari ST Software 


Desktop Publisher ST.$ 81 

Word Writer ST.$ 51 

NeoDesk..$ 20 

Turbo ST.$ 35 

Omni-Res. $ 25 

GFA Basic or Compiler.$ 39 

Cyber Studio.$ 67 

Cyber Paint...$ 53 

Spectrum 512.$ 53 

Quantum Paintbox.$ 31 

Drafix 1...$120 

Analyze.$ 24 

Word-Up.$ 51 

Fontz.$ 25 

Teachers Pet.$ 33 

PC-Ditto........$ 65 

VIP Professional Lite.$ 50 


Hours: 10 AM- 10 PM (EST) Mon-Fri 

Terms: MC/VISA or COD (no surcharges) 

cash or certified check 
Shipping: Software!Accessories , add $2.50 
FREE on orders over $75 
COD orders add $2.50 
Returns: Defective products replaced with 
same item. 

Prices and product subject to change w/o notice. 

European ST Titles 


Arcade Force 4.$ 42 

Arkanoid.$ 25 

Akari Warriors.$ 30 

Captain Blood.$ 36 

Leatherneck.$ 30 

Master of the Universe.$ 30 

Preditor.$ 30 

Out Run...... $ 30 

Rampage.$ 30 

Many others arriving daily call.... 

June Specials 

DungeonMaster.$ 24 

Dark Castle.$ 24 

Slaygon. $ 24 

Print Master Plus.$ 24 

Shanghai.$ 15 

Paintworks.$ 15 


June 1988 


CURRENT NOTES 


Page 51 


































































ATARI ST/MEGA 


CN REVIEW 


JUGGLER and JUGGLER II 

The Con Artist 

By Donald C. Lyles 


A review of Jugg/er and Jug¬ 
gler// is actually a review of three 
different programs. The first is the 
original version of Jugg/er, the 
second, a review of Jugg/er //, and 
the third, a look at the revised 
version of Jugg/er. Last month, 
encouraged by my editor, I took on 
the assignment of trying to master 
Jugg/er (version 1.0). Fine, no 
problem. I could certainly juggle 
my schedule to write the review. 
But then minor difficulties arose. 

Jugg/er did not really "juggle” 
the way it was supposed to. As a 
matter of fact, in more than one 
way it bungled. Michtron had a 
good idea for a program: a utility 
to allow two or more applications 
to remain resident in ram concur¬ 
rently while the user switches back 
and forth between them. While not 
a true multi-tasking environment, 
given the basic premise and 
assuming it would work as advert¬ 
ised, it could have, should have, 
satisfied those of us looking for 
multi-tasking on the ST. 

Being an astute (and informed) 
software user, I turned to the 
instruction manual first. It seemed 
fairly straightforward, directing me 
to run the program by clicking on 
the file “juggler.app”. 

First problem. There was no file 
called “juggler.app”. Dutifully, I 
made note of the disparity and 
clicked on “juggler.prg” instead. 
True to the instructions, a dialogue 
box appeared asking which pro¬ 
grams I wanted to load. Now, 
according to Michtron, Jugg/er 
runs GEM-based programs. 
Among those purported to work 
are Thunder, DB Master One, First 
Word and Michtron BBS 2.0. 
Being a trusting soul, I tried load¬ 
ing DB Master One and First Word. 
The results were not good. First 
Word worked only if it was loaded 
first. DB Master One did not work 
at all with First Word loaded. The 


two programs simply would not 
juggle back and forth. 

After a couple of phone calls 
to Michtron and the promise of a 
revision being mailed to me as 
soon as possible, I tried again. 
This time I loaded First Word and 
Thunder two programs which 
would be nice to be able to 
access concurrently. Low and 
behold, success! But this distur¬ 
bed me. Why was this combina¬ 
tion successful, while others also 
touted as “compatible” were any¬ 
thing but? 

After the arrival of Jugg/er and 
Jugg/er//, the revision, it was back 
to the keyboard for testing. Jug¬ 
gler //, which is referred to in the 
manual as a “quick starting” pro¬ 
gram, resembles K-Switch. Jug¬ 
gler H allows you to divide your ST 
memory into eight partitions (of 
course, the more memory the 
better). Each partition acts like its 
own individual computer, com¬ 
pletely independent of the others. 
You switch back and forth bet¬ 
ween the partitions by either using 
a desk accessory function and 
clicking on the partition you wish 
to activate or by “stepping” 
through each of the partitions in 
rank order by depressing the shift 
and alternate keys simultaneously. 

Michtron says they created 
Jugg/er H for programs that do not 
follow the protocol set up by Atari 
as well as for programs that are 
not GEM-based. The result? It 
works! As a matter of fact, as I 
write this article, I am using four 
partitions on my (1 Mb) 520ST. 
The program does allow for 
switching between GEM and non- 
GEM based programs. It is effec¬ 
tive and appears to be safe (at 
least I have not run into any 
problems yet.) 

The revised version of Jugg/er 
does not appear to hold any new 
surprises. As a matter of fact, it 


has the same number of bytes in 
the program and still carries the 
version number 1.0. It still works 
with some GEM-based programs 
and lets you switch from active to 
background programs using the 
mouse (essentially, what you are 
doing is moving from screen to 
screen). The only difference bet¬ 
ween the revised Jugg/er and Jug¬ 
gler // appears to be that Jugg/er 
is strictly for use on GEM-based 
programs. 

You can not switch programs 
while your computer is doing any 
active I/O work, such as reading or 
writing to the disk or printing. Other 
than that restriction, I have 
encountered no problems using 
Jugg/er. Note that you are pro¬ 
vided an option of saving the 
programs you want available as 
switchable applications. When you 
run Jugg/er the selected applica¬ 
tions are all loaded automatically. 

Jugg/er and Jugg/er II can be 
used concurrently. For example, 
divide your computer into two par¬ 
titions using Jugg/er //. Have the 
first partition operate a non-GEM- 
based game and then step (using 
the Shift and Alternate keys) to the 
second partition. Use Jugg/er in 
the second partition to juggle two 
GEM-based programs. 

Using Jugg/er can be a little 
cumbersome at times. Jugg/er and 
Jugg/er // will not work with a ram 
disk, Publishing Partner nor with 
any type of cache program or 
Deskcart. I recommend that once 
you find those programs that you 
would like to be able to switch 
among, be sure to save them 
using the SAVE option in Jugg/er. 
It’s not multi-tasking, but it is an 
alternative that, one way or the 
other, will work. 

[Jugg/er / <5 // by Michtron, 576 S. 
Telegraph, Pontiac, Michigan, 
48053(313) 334-5700. $39.95.] 


Page 52 


CURRENT NOTES 


June 1988 







ATARI’S SMALL MIRACLES by Joe Russek 


FLAG 

This one is a bit longer than usual, but after 
viewing those red and white stripes, followed by the 
blue rectangle covered with stars, you will appreciate 
the extra effort you made. 

10 REM Draw the United States Hag 
20 REM High Resolution 4-Color Graphics, 

25 REM No Text Window 
30 GRAPHICS 7+16 

40 REM Setcolor 0 Corresponds To Color 1 

50 SETCOLOR 0,4,4:RED=1 

60 REM Setcolor 1 Corresponds To Color 2 

70 SETCOLOR 1,0,14:WHITE=2 

80 REM Setcolor 2 Corresponds To Color 3 

90 BLUE=3:REM Defaults to Blue 

100 REM Draw 13 Red & White Stripes 

110 C=RED 

120 FOR 1=0 TO 12 

130 COLOR C 

140 REM Each Stripe has 6 Horizontal Lines 

150 FOR J=0 TO 6 

160 PLOT 0,I*7+J 

170 DRAWTO 159,I*7+J 

180 NEXT J 

200 C=C+1:IF C>WHITE THEN C=RED 
210 NEXT I 

300 REM Draw Blue Rectangle 

310 COLOR BLUE 

320 FOR 1=0 TO 48 

330 PLOT 0,1 

340 DRAWTO 79,1 

350 NEXT I 

360 REM Draw 9 Rows of White Stars 
370 COLOR WHITE 

380 K=0:REM Start with row of 6 stars 
390 FOR 1=0 TO 8 
395 Y=4+I*5 

400 FOR J=0 TO 4:REM 5 STARS IN A ROW 
410 X=K+5+J*14:COSUB 1000 
420 NEXT J 

430 IF KoO THEN K=0:GOTO 470 

440 REM Add 6th Star Every Other Line 

450 X=5+5*14:GOSUB 1000 

460 K=7 

470 NEXT I 

500 REM If Key Hit, then STOP 

510 IF PEEK(764)=255 THEN 510 

515 REM Open text window w/o clearing screen 

520 GRAPHICS 7+32 

525 REM Change colors back 

530 SETCOLOR 0,4,4:SETCOLOR 1,0,14 

1000 REM Draw 1 Star Centered at X,Y 

1010 PLOT X-l,Y:DRAWTO X+1,Y 

1020 PLOT X,Y-l:PLOT X,Y+1 

1030 RETURN 


GTIA TEST 

Running counterclockwise, a peach, pink, blue 
oval gradually is formed until it becomes a solid. Later 
little, black lines one-by-one disappear. 

100 REM GTIA TEST 
110 DIM C(22,2) 

115 GRAPHICS 10:FOR Z=704 TO 712:READ R:POKE 
Z,R:NEXT Z 

116 DATA 0,26,42,58,74,90,106,122,138,154 
118 LIM=22:T2=3.14159*2/LIM 

120 GOSUB 2500:FOR V=1 TO LIM:T=T+T2:GOSUB 
2500:NEXT V 
200 GOTO 1000 

400 FOR X=1 TO 8:Z=PEEK(704+X):Z=Z+16:IF Z>255 THEN 
Z=26 

420 POKE 704+X,Z:NEXT X:POKE 77,0:GOTO 400 
1000 REM 

1010 FOR R=1 TO 8:T6=R 
1020 GOSUB 1520:NEXT R 
1110 FOR R=9 TO 15:T6=16-R 
1120 GOSUB 1520:NEXT R 
1210 FOR R=16 TO 23:T6=R-15 
1220 GOSUB 1520:NEXT R 
1310 FOR R=24 TO 30:T6=31-R 
1320 GOSUB 1520:NEXT R 
1400 IF T3=l THEN GOTO 400 
1410 T3=l:GOTO 1010 

1520 COLOR T6:V=0:GOSUB 2000:PLOT X,Y: 

FOR V=1 TO LIM:T=T+T2:GOSUB 2000:GOSUB 
3000:DRAWTO X,Y:NEXT V:RETURN 
2000 X=(30-R)*C(V,1)+40:Y=(60-R)*C(V,2 
)+80:RETURN 

2500 C(V, l)=SIN(T):C(V,2)=COS(T):RETURN 

3000 IF T3=l THEN IF (R=l AND V>11) OR 

R>1 THEN POSITION X,Y:POKE 765,T6:XIO 18,#6,0,0,”S:” 

3010 RETURN 


GTIA DEM 2 

At first squares are formed from the outside to the 
inside of the screen. Later squares become rectan¬ 
gles, going from vertical to horizontal shapes. The 
entire process continues ad infinitum. 

1 REM GTIADEM2 
10 GRAPHICS 11 
20 FOR X=0 TO 78 

30 C=C+l:COLOR C:IF C=127 THEN C=0 
40 PLOT X,Y:DRAWTO 78-X,Y:DRAWTO 78-X.191- 
Y:DRAWTO X,191-Y:DRAWTO X,Y 
50 Y=Y+2:IF Y>191 THEN Y=0 
60 NEXT X:GQTO 20 


June 1988 


CURRENT NOTES 


Page 53 







TIPS’N’TRAPS 


by Jim Stevenson Jr. 


Welcome Back. I almost missed an issue from lack of messages, but I managed to get some unanswered 
questions together from previous issues. And, good news! A new board just went up called the Crusader’s 
Castle, which will become a new source for Tips ‘N’ Traps. The new number is (703)360-1984, so give it a 
call for those of you with modems, along with Merlin’s Litterbox at (703)250-7303. If you want to ask me 
something personally, call me (voice only) at (703)378-3540. See you next month. 


DUNGEON MASTER 

Q. I must have got on the bandwagon late, but I’m still 
on level 4 of DM. I think I have been everywhere, but 
the steps leading down to level 5 are blocked by an 
iron gate that seems immune to anything I can do. 
Any help would be appreciated. I do have the maps, 
so I think I have been everywhere. Thanks. 

--Jeff Johnson 

A. Still in the realm of the purple worms, eh? Well, this 
is what you gotta do (though you probably won’t like 
it): 

• Go back to the zombie suspended over the pit 
(next to the message THIS IS MY PRISONER. LET 
HIM SUFFER). 

• Kill the zombie (with a throwing star, preferably, 
but a fireball spell will do the trick, too ... you just 
want to save your mana for what comes next). 

• Be prepared to fight your way through about 
another half-dozen pairs of worms ... they’re 
released when you kill the zombie. 

—’’Reforger" 

Q. Once you have merged the Firestaff and Power 
Gem how do you kill Chaos? I have tried fluxcaging 
him but he just teleports out. Is there any key for the 
IR door? 

—"Raven” 

A. You have to surround him with cages and/or walls. 

—"Refotger" 

Q. I had him surrounded with fluxcages but they just 
wore off after a while. Do I have to do something else 
to him once I have him surrounded? 

--’’Raven” 

A. You need to use the ‘FUSE’ power of the FireStaff 
on him once he is trapped by your fluxcage. 

—Chris Leonhard 

Q. When is a rock not a rock? When it isn’t a stone, or 
floor, or wall, or anything for that matter. 

—"Jack Flack” 

A. Believe it or not, the answer to that is “when it is 
nothing”. Makes sense right? Makes too much sense, 
actually. 


Q. How do you get past the “test your strength” Blue 
Mist on level 6? 

—"Raven" 

Q. After you have the third Ra key, is it necessary to 
keep going or can you just turn around and go back 
up to level 7? I tried to keep going, but ran into two 
knights that I can’t kill. Does anyone know an easy 
way to kill them? 

—"Raven" 

TRINITIJ 

Q. I’m stuck way at the beginning. I have the paper 
bird that tells me to be at Long Water at 4:00, but I 
can’t get there because of the “Do Not Walk On 
Grass” notice. The comic book that comes with the 
game shows me symbols that match those on the 
Sundial. What do I do before I get nuked at precisely 
4:00 pm? 

--Derrick Williams 

A. Anyway, back to Trinity. I got pretty far in it since 
last I played (to the Kitchen or thereabouts) so I’ll 
lend you a stick out of the quicksand. Examine 
everything. Look at everything that is mentioned in 
the text. Talk to people. While not useful point-wise, 
you’ll get some valuable insight to the game and 
what’s going on. Especially the woman who’s feeding 
the birds. Try the format “ASK WOMAN ABOUT xxx”. 
Ask her about everything. For fun, try TRINITY. 

Imagine yourself actually there. If you’re stuck, do 
something else and go back to it. A few hours away 
from the game or a good night’s sleep will bring fresh 
insight later on. Of course, those are the rules as with 
any Infocom game or, for that matter, any adventure 
game. 

Okay, a couple of keywords/phrases for you to think 
about: The sign says: “do not WALK on the grass, 
tree, soccer, perambulator.” Oh, and don’t forget to 
not leave empty-handed where the sundial is. Once 
you’re passed this section of the game you can’t go 
back. I had to restart the entire game. 

—Sam Wright 

SPLICE QUEST 

Q. How do you get past the door in front of that little 
volcano, and next to the pit with the green tentacles? 


Page 54 


CURRENT NOTES 


June 1988 









Also, where do you get the “fizzy” stuff to kill 
Orat? 


--Jim Stevenson 

BEyOND ZORJC 

Q. How do I get the alligator’s jewel through? 

—"Shaman" 

Q. (1) How do you get out of the cellar in the 
pub? I got everything in it, but I can’t get out. (2) 
How do you cross the bridge, or does the 
umbrella serve a purpose when it’s broken? (3) 
Does anyone know the answer to the riddle on 
the cliff (My tines be long, etc.) 

—“Max Quordlepleen" 

POLICE QUEST 

Q. How do you get the girl out of the hotel so you 
can play poker? Also, do you need the radio? And 
if so, how do I get it? 

-’’Raven” 

LURKING HORROR 

Q. What do you do with the brass hyrax? Do you 
put it on the hand? 

—’’Shaman” 

Q. I found the tomb in the sub-basement of the 
Aero Building and opened the lock. Now, those 
stupid rats are in the tunnel. How do I get past 
them, or survive them? 

—”Zor Prime” 

Q. How do I enlarge the crack in the wall? What 
am 1 looking for in the cinder block tunnel, and 
how do I frighten the Urchin? 

—Steve Steinberg 

THE PtAWN 

Q. Can anyone “shed some light” on how (and 
where) to find what the Guru wants?? 

—Dave Lee 

SPJICE QUEST 11 

Q. What do I do after I have gotten to Vohaul’s 
asteroid? I have explored it fully, and am at an 
impasse. 

-Anonymous 


| ST DISK- A- MONTH"™*! 

DID YOU KNOW THAT: 

THERE ARE 14 MONTHS IN EACH 
YEAR?? 

YOU CAN GET ALL THE NEW AND 
BEST OF PUBLIC DOMAIN/SHAREWARE 
EACH MONTH AUTOMATICALLY?? 

THAT YOU WON'T GO BROKE 
"KEEPING UP"?? 

Well, the last two Items above are 
absolutely true; the first of course Is not, 
but It might as well be, since with the 
PATNOR Disk-A-Month program you will 
receive 14 disks a year, each packed full of 
the latest public domain releases, all in 
ARCED format. You can build an 
extensive software library of great 
programs for little more than the cost of 
blank disks. 


Each month you can look forward to 
programs that will help you be productive 
in your home or business, programs that 
are designed to relax and entertain you, 
and powerful utilities and applications. 

Twice each year, the Disk- A-Month will 
consist of a special 2 disk issue; and we 
will save these special Issues for a time 
when something of exceptional value or 
merit is available. 


Subscribe now and your first issue will be 

shipped to you immediately. 

.14 disks (1 year) ONLY $44.95 

OR try a Sample Issue for.4.95 


SONY SONY SONY 


SONY invented the 3,5” disk technology, 
so it is really no surprise that they make 
the most reliable disks. Their SS/DD disks 
will in fact outperform many brand name 
DS/DD disks on the market. We offer 
these SONY disks in bulk pack format 
only: 

BOX of 50 SS/DD SONY 3.5" 
disks.$55.00 + 2.50 S/H 


PATNOR ENTERPRISES, PO BOX 
370782, El Paso TX 79937. Phone: 
(915)598-1048. Payment by Check, Money 
order, VISA or MASTERCARD. No 
surcharge. Texas residents add 7 1/2% 
sales tax. Catalog on disk with orders. 

********* *AAA ***************************** 

P.S. CN READERS - "THANKS". 


June 1988 


CURRENT NOTES 


Page 55 















ATARI XE/XL 

CN REVIEW | 

THE GAME CART 

by Len Poggiali 


BUG HUNT and BARNYARD PLASTER 

Two Games for Atari’s Light Gun 


To date, Atari has released two 
cartridge titles employing its XE 
Game System light gun. Bug Hunt, 
a relatively straightforward shoot¬ 
ing contest, was packaged with the 
game system; Barnyard Blaster, 
which is a good deal more sophis¬ 
ticated, sells separately ($29.95 
list). Both may be played either by 
one or two players. 

A certain amount of fear (bor¬ 
dering on paranoia) of small crea¬ 
tures is evidenced in the storylines 
of both games. In Bug Hunt the 
human player is supposed to be a 
computer operator whose mother¬ 
board is attacked by flies, roaches, 
termites, ants, and spiders. To 
keep them from driving you (the 
player) crazy, you must shoot them 
with your light gun. Barnyard Blas¬ 
ter's you and your grandpa try¬ 
ing to save your farm from an 
infestation of vermin. Unfor¬ 
tunately, most of these so-called 
“vermin” are rabbits, ducks, chick¬ 
ens, birds, and owls, a definite 
indication that gramps and his off¬ 
spring are not playing with any¬ 
thing remotely resembling a full 
deck. 

Scoring in Bug Hunt is based 
on how difficult (because of size 
and/or movement) each insect is 
to hit. How many bonus points a 
players receives and whether he 
advances to the next wave is 
determined by the percentage of 
bugs hit per total shots fired. 
Because of this, it is not a good 
idea to fire wildly in the hope of 
eventually hitting your target. It 
also doesn’t make sense to fire at 
those more-difficult-to-hit 
objects, such as moving caterpil¬ 
lars or tiny bugs, unless you are in 
one of the early waves where 
accuracy doesn’t count for as 
much. In later rounds you should 
focus on the larger creatures—the 
frogs, butterflies, and a demon-like 
creature who materializes from a 


small, gem-like bug. As you im¬ 
prove, of course, you should begin 
to take on the more challenging 
objects, as they bring with them a 
good deal more points than do 
their larger, slower brethren. 

At the end of each wave, a 
status screen appears showing the 
wave number, the numbers of 
shots and hits, the accuracy per¬ 
centage and bonus (if any), and 
the wave and total scores. When 
the game ends a final status 
screen appears and displays the 
player’s score and gives one of 
eleven final ratings (e.g., 
“Hacker”) based on the points 
earned. 



Rank in Barnyard Blaster is 
determined by the number of 
screens completed. For example, 
for finishing from 33 to 36 screens, 
one earns the title of “Blaster”, 
while the poor soul who finishes 
none is labelled a “Total Dud”. To 
advance from one screen to the 
next, you must use the 40 bullets 
you are given wisely, achieving at 
least the minimal level of accuracy 
designated for each round. The 
quicker you shoot a moving target, 
the morepoints you gain for a hit. 
Each time you complete a screen, 
your screen score, bullet bonus 
(based on how many bullets are 
left), and total score are displayed. 

Unlike the one-screen playing 
field of Bug Hunt, Barnyard Blaster 
provides its shooters with four 


colorful, nicely drawn playing 
areas. In the Barnyard Screen, 
bottles and cans balanced on a 
fence provide suitable, static tar¬ 
gets for the novice. Each may be 
hit directly, in which case they 
smash or are partly blown away, or 
they may be shot away intact if the 
player hits them from below. In the 
latter case the ping-like sound 
effect when the bullet makes con¬ 
tact is particularly effective. 

The Cornfield Screen contains 
both static (melons and pumpkins) 
and moving (crows and rabbits) 
targets. The former must be shot 
before the animals may be dispat¬ 
ched. In the Barn Screen, however, 
there are only moving objects 
(birds, owls, mice, etc.). Naturally 
that makes this screen more diffi¬ 
cult than the earlier two. 

Whenever the player com¬ 
pletes one of these three screens, 
Gramp’s Bonus Screen appears. 
Gramps will throw ten bottles into 
the air, one at a time, and the 
player should shoot as many as 
possible for bonus points. Shoot¬ 
ing Gramps (as much as he may 
deserve it) ends the bonus round 
immediately. 

My children and I enjoyed 
playing both games, although we 
all felt that Barnyard Blaster was 
superior for a number of reasons. 
Although Bug Hunts motherboard 
and insect targets were drawn 
sharply and realistically, and ani¬ 
mation was lively, the absence of 
additional, unique screens was a 
drawback. Barnyard Blasters 
quartet of cartoon-like playing 
fields, on the other hand, were 
appropriately cute, providing just 
enough variety to keep this game 
interesting long after Bug Hunt 
ceased to be a novelty. 

By using only shades of 
metallic green and white in Bug 
Hunt, authors Rob Zdybel and 
Adam Murphy create an eye- 


Page 56 


CURRENT NOTES 


June 1988 












ATARI XE/XL 


CN REVIEW 


catching visual effect; however, 
after awhile, this too becomes tire¬ 
some, and one longs for the 
strong, varied hues found on 
James V. Zalewski’s Barnyard 
Blaster. 

Finally, there is much more 
variety to be found in Barnyard 
Blaster, not only in the number of 
screens but also in the types of 
targets. 

Where Bug Hunt bested Barn¬ 
yard Blaster were in its score- 
keeping system, by the types of 
creatures being shot at, and by the 
presence of the demon-like crea¬ 
ture. While it is made clear in the 
former game what accuracy per¬ 
centage is needed in order for the 
player to advance to the next 
wave, there is no mention of this in 
the latter contest. Secondly, while I 
take no issue with blasting insects 
(except for the butterflies), killing 
ducks, chickens, and bluebirds is 
not my notion of sport or self- 
defense. Finally, the presence of 
the “demon” in Bug Hunt adds an 
element of danger to the proceed¬ 


ings. In all other cases in both 
games, what we are shooting are 
defenseless creatures. Only with 
the “demon” is there any sense of 
threat to the player. 

The light gun does not work 



perfectly in either game. I found 
that lining up both sights with the 
target was time-consuming and 
quite often no more effective than 
just shooting from the hip. In fact, 
once I got the feel of the weapon, 


shooting Dirty Harry-style gave me 
a good deal more accuracy. A 
quirk specific to Barnyard Blasters 
that it is often easier to hit smaller, 
more point-valuable targets than 
those larger, less valuable ones. 
This is particularly true in the Barn 
Screen where I rarely missed the 
tiny mice but wasted shot after 
shot trying to hit ducks, chickens, 
and the owl. 

Although I enjoyed playing 
both games, and would recom¬ 
mend that XE Game System 
owners purchase Barnyard Blaster 
(and that 8-bit computer owners 
buy a gun I Bug Hunt package as 
well as Barnyard B/astef), I would 
like to see future titles provide 
more excitement by having targets 
not be defenseless, harmless ani¬ 
mals. Perhaps with its soon-to- 
be-released Chicago gangster 
cartridge (tentatively entitled The 
Unp/ugab/ed) Atari will succeed in 
creating a more challenging, excit¬ 
ing game than either Bug Hunt or 
Barnyard Blaster. Until then these 
two will do quite nicely. 




Produce effective, attention-getting 
layouts with ScanArt ™ by Migraph. 

Scan Art is a collection of high quality 
graphics and illustrations specially selected 
for use in desktop communications. 

Every project you create using ScanArt will be 
outstanding... newsletters, reports, flyers, brochures, 
logos, overhead transparencies... all will benefit from 
this versatile collection of quality art. 

ScanArt images start with pro¬ 
fessionally drawn line art which has 
been optically scanned at either 150 or 
300 dots per inch. Each image is then 
carefully edited to provide excellent 
printout quality, whether you use a 
9 or 24-pin dot matrix printer or a 300 
dpi laser printer! 

Images are saved in DRI standard compressed .IMG 
format and can be used by any application that uses .IMG 
files such as Supercharged Easy-Draw and Timeworks 
Publisher ST. Available at your Dealer now! 





'^VHGR4PH, 


206 - 838 - 46/7 

800 - 223-3729 


NEW... 


Easy-Tools! 

Migraph proudly introduces Easy- 
Tools™, a new GEM desk accessory 
that works with Easy-Draw®. 

If you use Easy-Draw to create 
technical illustrations, mechanical or 
architectural plans, flyers, charts or 
forms, then you need Easy-Tools! 

Easy-Tools lets you: 

■ Numerically size & locate figures 

■ Rotate a figure by any degree about a user 
definedpoint 

■ Enter polytext which can be rotated 

■ Con vert figures to polylines; then add, delete 
or move any point using Edit Polyline 

■ And Much More... 



Easy-Tools offers you the power and capability to 
produce hundreds of new designs like the spiral, 
quickly and easily. Available at your Dealer now! 




& 


N o 0 ^ 
"^lasy-T ools 


* Easy-Too/s requires 1 Mb RAM & Easy-Draw version 2.26 or higher. 
Contact Migraph for Easy-Draw upgrade information. 


June 1988 


CURRENT NOTES 


Page 57 














ATARI XE/XL 


CN REVIEW 


US DOUBLER and RAMBO XL 

Two Good Investments for the 8-bit Owner 

Review by Ai Wiliams 


US DOUBLER 

The US Doubler (the “US” 
stands for Ultra Speed) consists of 
two plug-in modules that, when 
installed in a 1050 disk drive, 
convert the 1050 into a true dou¬ 
ble-density, single-sided drive. 

In most cases, installation 
consists of opening up the case of 
the disk drive, installing the ICs, 
and closing it up again. Since Atari 
has made two different types of 
1050 drives, however, things could 
become a bit more complicated. 
The ICs given with the installation 
kit are of the type that is most 
commonly found, but if your 1050 
takes the other type of 1C, then 
you have four options. 

First, you can send the 1C back 
to ICD, and they’ll replace it with 
the correct plug-in unit. Secondly, 
you can move two jumpers to 
make your 1050 drive conform to 
the 1C that comes with the kit. Your 
third option would be to send the 
1050 back to ICD along with $15, 
and they’ll convert it for you. The 
easiest and quickest way, howe¬ 
ver, is to have your dealer convert 
your drive for you. The cost is 
usually rather nominal. 

For some reason, when Atari 
designed the 1050 drive, they used 
a drive mechanism that was cap¬ 
able of writing double-density, but 
the electronics that they used 
could only support an enhanced 
density mode. That is why a rather 
simple modification of the elec¬ 
tronics is able to give you double¬ 
density. 

The US Doubler will give you 
180 kilobytes on each side of a 
disk, and with the use of Sparta- 
DOS, a high speed transfer of data 


to and from the drive. Even with¬ 
out SpartaDOS, you’ll get an eight 
per cent increase in transfer 
speed, and additionally, the new 
electronics will position the read/ 
write head more accurately. 

For the modest price of the 
doubler, and the small amount of 
time and effort that it takes to 
install, the US Doubler is a worth¬ 
while investment. 

[/CD, /nc., 1220 Rock Street, 

Rockford, //. 61101, (815) 968- 
2229. List price is $69.95 with 
SpartaDOS, or $39.95 without 
SpartaDOS.] 

RAMBO XL 

While this is a review of the 
RAMBO XL modification for the 
Atari 800XL and the Atari 1200XL 
computers, you will generally need 
SpartaDOS for full support of the 
modification. TheSpartaDOS Con¬ 
struction Set retails for $39.95, and 
SpartaDOS X, which is a cartridge 
version of SpartaDOS retails for 
$79.95, and is also made by 
ICD.,Inc. 

RAMBO XL converts your Atari 
800XL or 1200XL into a 256K 
computer that, when used with 
SpartaDOS, supports a 192K 
RAMdisk and is completely com¬ 
patible with 130XE programs and 
with Basic XE in the extended 
mode. It will also support Atari 
DOS 2.5 and its 64K RAMdisk. 

The kit comes with a RAMBO 
XL piggyback board, a piece of 
fine hook-up wire, a piece of heat 
shrink tubing, and most impor¬ 
tantly of all, the instruction manual. 
You supply the eight 256K 
DRAMS. 

The manual gives you simple, 


step-by-step directions for 
accessing the main circuit board of 
your computer. This should be 
done as soon as you get the kit 
since you should find out one 
important item. Does your com¬ 
puter have sockets, or are the IC’s 
soldered directly to the board? If 
you have your chips soldered in, 
then ICD recommends that you 
send your computer to them to 
have them modify it for you. The 
charge for this will be $30.00, 
which includes return shipment. 
Since you will have to unsolder 
nine, 16-pin chips, add a board, 
and bend up five pins on a 40-pin 
chip, unless you are a really skilled 
technician, it is recommended that 
you avail yourself of this option if 
your chips are soldered in. If you 
are not sure of doing the modifica¬ 
tion yourself, then you might con¬ 
sider letting ICD do it for you 
anyway. 

Naturally, when I opened the 
case of my 800XL, I discovered 
that all of the chips that I would 
have to access were soldered to 
the main board. While I may not be 
too bright, I’m not exactly crazy 
either, so I sent the computer, the 
RAMBO XL board, and the DRAM 
chips to ICD to have them install it. 

I received the modified 800XL 
within a week - ICD works fast! 

The first thing that I tried was 
AtariWriter+; the program thought 
that I was using the 130XE. As a 
matter of fact, I’m using the 800XL, 
now complete with bank switching, 
the same as if I were working with 
the 130XE. Every program that I’ve 
tried so far thinks that the 800XL is 
a 130XE—complete compatibility! 

As nice as it is to be able to 
use 130XE programs, the really 


Page 58 


CURRENT NOTES 


June 1988 








ATARI XE/XL 


CN REVIEW 


nice part of the modification is the 
large RAMdisk available to the 
user. I’ve been learning to use 
Kyan Pascal, and since it is a 
compiled language, it is disk inten¬ 
sive. As a result, I am always 
loading files to and from my com¬ 
puter. The sheer speed of the 
RAMdisk really shines here. 

For example, using Atari DOS 
2.5 to load the public domain 
game Space Lords took me about 
one minute. With SpartaDOS, it 
took 14seconds. Using the RAM¬ 
disk, the loading time was under 
two seconds. 

Another good use for the 
RAMdisk lies in the field of tele¬ 
computing. Having the RAMBO XL 
is just like having a double-density 
disk drive inside your machine, 


only better! The RAMBO XL sup¬ 
ports a 192K RAMdisk, while a 
single-sided double-density disk 
is 180K. The disk drive is a 
mechanical device which suffers 
wear-and-tear, and which takes 
time to physically operate. The 
RAMdisk operates at machine 
speeds, and makes hard disk 
drives appear slow. It is totally 
solid state in nature, and so suf¬ 
fers no wear-and-tear. 

If you do any tele-computing, 
then perhaps the RAMBO XL 
might be for you. ICD has a BBS 
which is up 24 hours every day at 
(815) 968-2229 and which sup¬ 
ports 300/1200/2400 with XMO¬ 
DEM downloading. You’ll be able 
to find RAMBO XL support files 
there. 


As good as the RAMdisk is, 
however, there is more. Advanced 
programmers can bank switch the 
RAMBO XL, dividing the 256K of 
memory into 16 banks of 16K 
each. The RAMBO XL manual 
gives information on bank switch¬ 
ing. 

If you have an 800XL, and 
would like to upgrade your 
machine not only to be compatible 
with the 130XE, but also to be a 
super version of the 130XE, then 
the RAMBO XL is certainly worth 
looking into. 

[/CD, Inc., 1220 Rock Street, 
Rockford, //. 61101, (815) 968- 
2229. List price is $39.95; buyer 
must supply eight256K DRAMS for 
this project.] 


A & M Enterprises 

P.O. Box 5552 Plymouth, Ml 48170 
Call Toll Free 1-800-342-4514 


Information: (313) 981-4830 


& 


Atari ST, 

Atari 8-Bit, 
Amiga, 
Commodore, 
IBM Compatible 


Modem Specials 

Avatex 1200HC $94.95 

Avatex 2400 $179.99 
Atari SX212 $84.95 


I.B. Drive 

5.25" DS/DD DISK DRIVE 
Only $219 

PC-Ditto $61.95 


Future Systems 
3.5" DS/DD 84 Track 
Disk Drive 

L.E.D. Track Indicator 

Only $199 


Bulk Disks 

3.5” DS/DD 1.19ea 
5.25" DS/DD ,29ea 


Hardware 


Atari ST Hardware 

Call 

Atari 130XE 

149.95 

Atari XF551 Drive 

179.95 

Atari 80 Column Card 

69.95 

Supra 20 Meg Hard Drive 

569.95 

Panasonic 1080i Printer 

179.95 

Panasonic 1091 i Printer 

219.95 

Star NX-1000 

176.95 

Cables 

ST/IBM 6' Printer 

6.95 

ST/IBM 10' Printer 

9.95 

RS-232 M-F6' 

7.95 

ST Drive Cable 

16.95 

Atari I/O Cable 

8.95 


Accessories 


Atari ST Cover 

7.95 

Atari ST Drive Cover 

6.95 

Atari 130XE Cover 

6.95 

Monitor Master 

53.95 

Mouse Mat 

6.95 

Disk File 40-3.5 M 

6.95 

Disk File 50 - 5.25" 

6.95 

PR Connection 

74.95 

ICD Printer Connection 

49.95 

Joysticks 

Epyx 500XJ 

14.95 

Atari Brand 

6.95 

Wico Bat Handle 

18.95 

Suncom Slik Stick 

6.95 

The Terminator 

15.95 


Supplies 


Disk Drive Cleaner 

4.95 

lOpk Maxell 3.5" SS/DD 

13.95 

lOpk Maxell 3.5" DS/DD 

18.95 

lOpk Sony 3.5" SS/DD 

13.95 

lOpk Sony 3.5" DS/DD 

17.95 

Mailing Labels 

4.95 

Ribbons 

Call 

Software 

GFA Basic 

37.95 

GFA Basic Compiler . 

37.95 

GFA Basic Book 

24.95 

GFA Companion 

31.95 

Laser C 

144.95 

Flash 

19.95 

Z-Time STFM 

49.95 


Software 


Word Writer ST 

49.95 

Data Manager ST 

49.95 

Publishing Partner 

56.95 

Microsoft Write 

74.95 

Battlezone 

19.95 

Star Trek 

24.95 

Dungeon Master 

24.95 

Impossible Mission II 

24.95 

Gunship 

31.95 


Call for our 
Current Listing 
of more than 
500 Titles of ST 
and XL/XE Software 


Ordering Information: 

Mastercard and Visa accepted. No surcharge for credit cards. Personal checks, please allow 4 weeks for clearence. C.O.D.'s accepted add $3 C.O.D. charge. Ml 
residents add 4% sales tax. Shipping: Continental U.S. add 3% minimum $3 HI, AK, Canada add 5% minimum $5. All other areas add 15% minimum $10. All 
shipping in excess of above will be added. Please allow 2-3 weeks for delivery. All defective items must have a return authorization number or they will be 
refused at your expense. Please call (313) 981-4830 for RA#. Prices and availability subject to change without notice. Hours: 9-5 est Not responsible for 
typographical errors. 


June 1988 


CURRENT NOTES 


Page 59 






















AT ARI ST/MEGA __ CN REVIEW 

SUPERBASE PERSONAL 

Relational Database Management for Tyros 

Review by John Barnes 


A “user-friendly” relational 
database for the Atari ST is as 
elusive as the Holy Grail. This 
review examines Superbase Per¬ 
sonalis the latest candidate in this 
field. In addition to the “intuitive” 
GEM interface there are glitzy fea¬ 
tures such as the ability to store 
pictures and documents in your 
database. 

Will those in the Atari ST world 
who distain programming finally be 
able to organize their lists nicely? A 
Current Notes author, who is 
engaged in reconstructing the his¬ 
tory of his World War II fighter 
squadron, recently raved about 
SuperBase Persona/ as the tool 
that let him get some real work out 
of his Atari ST. If a product can 
generate this much enthusiasm in 
a database beginner, it must be a 
product wothy of some conside¬ 
ration. 

It turns out that my colleague 
just likes the way the program lets 
him print out up to four mailing 
labels across without having to 


write a program. His struggle with 
this task in dBMAN had proved 
unrewarding. He also missed the 
“point and click” simplicity of 
other GEM programs when it 
came time to update the records 
in his lists. 

Features 

SuperBase Persona/ (SB) is 
easy to install and use. There is no 
protection. The GEM interface 
makes it easy to define the struc¬ 
ture of the database. SB provides 
the user with complete flexibility in 
specifying field lengths and in 
modifying the form of records. 
Best of all, SB does not lose the 
trailing part of a field when you 
shrink its length. 

You can have pictures or text 
documents as entries in your 
database. This opens up a great 
many possibilities. “Input Filters” 
make it easy to build in limited 
integrity checks on input data. 

The vital “Import” and 


Desk 

Project 

Record Process Set 

1- 

Systen 

11:33 



Suoerbases ARTIC2 

indexed on Filenane 



Filenane 

Abstract 

Written Publishe 

Pages Title 


■ 1 


1ATABASE DATABASE.ABS 11-13-8? 1-0-1 
9ATATRV DATATRV.TXT 11-10-87 12-1-87 
1BMAN DfiMAN.TXT 10-1-87 11-1-87 
1ATATRV DATATRV.TXT 11-10-87 12-1-87 
DATABASE DATABASE.ABS 11-13-87 1-0-1 


0.00 Hoh to Avoid Bad Database Ha 
4.50 Datatrieve - an ST File Mana 
O.0O dBMAN - Industrial Strength 
4.50 Datatrieve - an ST File Mana 
0.00 Hoh to Avoid Bad Database Ma 


m 


DATABASE.ABS 


Koh to Avoid Bad Database Managers 


Sets forth criteria for evaluating database nanagenent softnare. "File 
lanagers" and relational products are considered. The article lists 3 
criteria for evaluating database nanagenent products. 


tziixiijiioDmczitziGoctacom 


o 



“Export” functions allow you to 
bring in lists from outside your 
database system and to output 
them so you can use them with 
other software (a spreadsheet or 
graphing program, for example). 

The “Query” feature in SB is 
able to link several files together. 
There is a built-in report generator 
that embodies a couple of nice 
functions for structuring reports. 
SuperBase Persona/ claims that it 
is “relational” in nature. More on 
that later. 

SB provides pretty good con¬ 
trol over your display with table, 
record, and form viewing capabili¬ 
ties. The adjustable windows and 
columns along with the change¬ 
able field order make it possible to 
view tables quite conveniently. 
Record filters provide a convenient 
way to focus on a subset of the 
data. 

Making a List 

The only way to measure the 
agony of working with a database 
is to build one of your own. I tried 
a couple of different things. The 
one that looked best was a list of 
my Current Notes articles wherein 
the external file field contains an 
abstract for the article. This func¬ 
tion is worth pursuing because it is 
not easy to do in dBMAN. 

The basic process of defining 
the files and fields for this data¬ 
base proceeded smoothly enough, 
although I discovered that it is 
difficult to modify a field name. I 
built two files, the first was a list of 
disk files containing the text of the 
articles, the second contained the 
titles, a pointer to the abstract, 
submission dates, publication 


Page 60 


CURRENT NOTES 


June 1988 




























ATARI ST/MEGA 


CN REVIEW 


dates, and other related informa¬ 
tion. The file name (without the 
extension) serves as a link bet¬ 
ween these two lists. The figure 
below shows the basic record 
viewing screen for the titles list in 
this application. 

Once I had defined the struc¬ 
ture of my database I had to get 
some data into it. I used DOJT! to 
make an ASCII file containing the 
names of the files in the Current 
Notes folder on my disk drive. After 
editing the file into a suitable form, 

I used the Import function in SB to 
get this data into its database file. I 
then used SB’s record operations 
to get rid of a few file names that 
did not belong in the list. 

Once I had a printed version of 
this list in hand, I went back to 
WordPerfect to look up the titles 
and to make abstracts for the 
articles. I entered the information 
into the titles file by hand using 
SB’s record functions. I then 
played with various ways of filter¬ 
ing, querying, and sorting the files 
to make various ordered lists. 

These functions were 
accessed in a reasonably natural 
way from GEM buttons and drop 
down menus, avoiding the some¬ 
time tortuous syntactic require¬ 
ments of dBMAN’s command line 
statements. 

With a little more persistence, I 
was able to use the "Query" func¬ 
tions to make new database files 
by performing the equivalent of the 
“Project”, “Join”, and “Intersect” 
functions of the relational algebra. 
This capability sets Superbase 
Persona! apart from database 
managers of the “file manager” ilk. 
The ability to do this without a 
programming language should 
prove attractive to those who do 
not want to tackle dBMAN. 

After some more browsing 
around I felt reasonably comfor¬ 
table with what was going on. 


Flies in the Ointment 

Once I understood what SB 
did, I could evaluate how well it 
does it. The criticisms that follow 
are partly matters of taste. None of 
them are fatal, but remedying 
them would result in a product that 
would get an A rather than a 
gentleman’s C. 

The operator interface leaves 
a lot to be desired. The drop down 
menus use obscure names and 
are quite jumbled. There should be 
a “Files” menu and “Select direc¬ 
tory” should be on it, rather than 
in the “System” menu. I can 
discern no good reason for failing 
to use the standard ST file selector 
dialogs. The program needs an 
escape mechanism to abort pro¬ 
cessing that might have gone 
astray. There is also a need for a 
simple button to clear the screen, 
which can get quite cluttered 
when moving back and forth in 
table view mode. This product 
needs to provide some online 
help. 

Boom Box Buttons 

SB uses a “boom box” meta¬ 
phor for controlling the record 
pointer. The row of little buttons 
along the bottom of the illustration 
control record selection in the 
same manner as the buttons on a 
tape recorder: rewind, fast for¬ 
ward, stop, etc. I hate it. These 
functions should be placed on the 
“F” keys. Grabbing the mouse and 
clicking firmly on one of the boom 
box buttons is simply too slow. 
Some, but not all, of the other 
drop-down menu functions are on 
Alt keys. "Remove Record" is a 
function that ought to be on a key 
somewhere (perhaps Ctrl-Del?). 
An “Undelete" function might also 
be handy. 

The horizontal slider is good 
for looking at wide tables. Why 
can’t we have a vertical slider bar 


for moving forward and backward 
through our tables? 

The mouse pointer should be 
more functional in the table view¬ 
ing mode. You should be able to 
point to a record and bring it up for 
editing, removal, or duplication. 

There is also too much point¬ 
ing and clicking in the structure 
definition dialogue. It is silly to use 
the mouse to run a counter up or 
down when a couple of key 
strokes would do nicely. Keyboard 
alternatives to the button selec¬ 
tions (a la WordPerfect) would be 
nice here. Also, some of the but¬ 
tons are kind of dinky, requiring 
extra care in mouse positioning. 
Certain dialog boxes should use a 
default selection (one you can 
select by hitting RETURN). 

The documentation, while it is 
far better than some, could use 
clearer writing and better organi¬ 
zation. Clear, concise explanations 
are lacking and the order is jum¬ 
bled. At least there is an index, but 
it could use a few more entries 
(“recalculation”, for example). The 
examples are too boring to be 
instructive. The overall feel can 
best be described as “tacky”, 
although it is functional. 

SB's claim to a “relational” 
character comes into play only in 
the query process, when fields 
from different files can be linked 
together in the query output. I will 
accept this use of the term “rela¬ 
tional”, although I prefer to reserve 
it for those database systems that 
can maintain a continuous linkage 
between multiple open files. 

While SB lets you (and in 
some cases requires you to) have 
multiple open files, flipping back 
and forth between them is awk¬ 
ward because there is only a single 
window for record viewing and the 
record pointers are not relationally 
linked. 

The program could do a better 
job on calculated fields. These 


June 1988 


CURRENT NOTES 


Page 61 











ATARI 


CN REVIEW 


should be updated whenever a 
component of the calculation is 
changed. The user should not 
have to click on the field or save 
the record to force recalculation. If 
manual recalculation is desirable 
to enhance speed, this should be 
a settable option. 

At the present time SB does 
not have command language sup¬ 
port. Superbase Professional, 
which features a BASIC-like 
language, is supposedly in the 
works, but I have only heard of an 
Amiga version. Users whose appli¬ 
cations require a language-driven 
database manager will have to be 
content with dBMAN for a while 
longer. If you really want pictures 
and external text files as part of 


your database, try Superbase. 

SB provides for Password 
protection, but I think this is silly 
on the ST, because there is no 
privileged user mode for altering 
or recovering passwords. God 
help you if you forget the pass¬ 
word. 

Conclusion 

This Holy Grail is a bit tarn¬ 
ished. It is suitable for dining off 
of, but not for worshipping. As I 
mentioned above, I would give the 
product a “C” for a final grade. 

Most Atari ST users can main¬ 
tain a simple database file. If this is 
all you need, you might try a less 
expensive product, like File Mana¬ 


ger ST or Datatrieve. On the other 
hand, designing a database for an 
application that requires multiple 
files with links between them is 
much more of a challenge. Howe¬ 
ver, relational database technology 
is an active field because the 
results justify the effort. 

I can visualize a structure of a 
WWII pilot’s database in which the 
names of the pilots are linked to 
pictures of the aircraft they flew, to 
the names of their planes, to the 
missions they performed, to the 
places they endured, and to the 
losses they suffered. Maps, pho¬ 
tographs, and memoirs would be 
tied together in a way that would 
bring the jungles of New Guinea to 
life on the screen. Some day .... 


Toad Computer Services , Q r :k ' Ef fZT" ffZ P , 

P.0. Box 1315, Sevema Park, MD 21146 A Service. We Really Do Care 


Atari ST ( 

PC Ditto 3.0.$74.95 

Magic Sac Plus.$109.00 

Spectrum 512.$49.95 

IMG Scanner.$75.00 

Publishing Partner.$69.95 

Pub. Partner Prof.$139.95 

VIP Prof. GSM.$169.95 

Degas Elite.$49.00 

Midimaze.$27.00 

Marble Madndss.$26.00 

Deskcart. $74.95 

Personal Pascal.$52.00 

Cyber Studio.$65.00 

Cyber Control.».$45.00 

Cyber Paint.$49.00 

Gun ship ST.$37.00 

Lattice C.$104.00 

Golden Path.. $34.95 

Interlink ST.$31.95 

Gauntlet.$37.50 

Pluto*.$24.00 

Barbarian.$28.00 

Terrorpods.$28.00 

TDI Moduli 2.$59.95 

GFA Basic 2 0.$59.95 

VT-100 Cartridge..$26.95 

Surreal Time Clock (520).$39.00 

Surreal Clock (520£m/l040).$49.00 

Atari SF314.$214.00 

Indus GTS-100ST.$209.00 

Crystal Castles.$26.00 

Color Computer eyes.$184.00 


Build Your Own Hard Disk 


Interfaces 

ICD ST Host Adapter - $115.00 
ICD 256K MIO Board - $169.00 
ICD 1024K MIO Board - $279.00 

XE MIO Adapter $19.95 


Pick One Of Each 
And Build Your Own 
Hard Disk SystemI 
Instructions Included. 
Call For Details! 


Controllers 

Adaptec 4000 MFM- $120.00 
Adaptec 4070 RLL- $155.00 


CaU For Other Bren da 
And Sixes! 


Hard Disks 

Miniscribe 8438 30MB RLL 3.5" 1/2 Height - $255.00 
Seagate ST238 30MB RLL 5.25" 1/2 Height - $265.00 
Seagate ST277R 65MB RLL 5.25" 1/2 Height - $480.00 


Printers 

2400 Modems 

1200 Modems 

Panasonic 1080i 
$179.00 

Panasonic 1091i 
$199.00 

Star NX-1000 
$185.00 

Panasonic 1524 
$559.00 

Supra 2400 
$149,00 
Anchor 2400 
$159.00 
GVC2400 
$169. go 
Avatex 2400 
$195.00 

Avatex 1200e 
$89.00 

Avatex 1200hc 
$109.00 

Atari SX212 
$89.00 

All Of Our Modems 

Are Hayes Compatible 

And Have Speakers! 


Atari XE 


Atari XF551. 

....$179.00 

Atari XEP80. 

.$79.95 

US Doubler..... 

.$29.00 

Atari writer Plus (Or 80).... 

.$39.00 

P:R: Connection. 

.$59.95 

Printshop. 

.$34.00 

First XLENT WP. 

.$24.00 

ITltiTna TV . . 

.$39.00 

Indus GT. 

....$184.00 

Syncalc. 

.$34.00 

Flight Simulator II. 

.$38.00 

All Scenery Disks. 

.$17.00 

Basic XE. 

.$52.00 

The Pawn. 

.$28.00 

Summer Games. 

.$19.00 


Call For Prices on Our Full Line of 
Atari Hardware & Software! 

Supplies 

Epyx 50QXJ Joystick.$14.95 

Almost All Cables.$12.00 

Maxell/Verbatim 3.5" SS/DB...H3.00 

Maxell 3.5" DS/DD.$19.95 

Bulk 3.5“ SS/DD Disks.$11.00 

Bulk 3.5“ DS/DD Disks.12.00 

3.5" Disk Box (40).$8.75 

Maxell 5.25" SS/DD Disks.$8.00 

Bonus SS/DD 5.25 1 ' Disks.$6.50 

Bonus DS/DD 5.25“ Disks.$7.00 

Bulk DS/DD 5.25“ Disks (10) ...$4.00 

Monitor Master...$47.00 

Memory Chips.Call 


Call Ua Today At (301) 544-69431 We Can Help! 

A or mmipv erdw Maryland rajridtntK add sales tax. All Pnces and DclicitS subject to change without notice. NO CC 


__ . _ . „ , . ra? 

Prepayment required with either personal or certified check or^noney order. Maryland residents add 5% sales tax. All Prices and policies subject to change without notice. 170 CODs! Add minimum 
$3.00 for shipping or call fox exact shipping price. Ah sales are final. Defective merchandise replaced with same merchandise. No refunds after sale is complete. Ah returns must be authorised by 
telephone before shipment. Returns without authorization will be returned at our discretion. Returned shipments subject to restocking fee. Items shipped via UPS. Maryland area pickups available. 
We carry a complete Hnc erf hardware and software. Call for more great prices) We attend most Atarifest* and other shows - See you there! We can provide technical assistance as well. 


Page 62 


CURRENT NOTES 


June 1988 






































































































ATARI XE/XL 


CN REVIEW 


PIRATES OF THE BARB ARY COAST 

The Right Mix of Action, Strategy, and Planning 

By Lincoln Hal/en 


Pirates of the Barbary Coast has an interesting 
mix of strategy and action I like to see in any game. 
The game is set during the times when pirates ruled 
along the Barbary coast off North Africa. Players trade 
goods in various ports to survive and to make enough 
money to pay a ransom to Bloodthroat the Pirate who 
has kidnapped your daughter. 

Going from port to port is, of course, dangerous 
since there are other pirates out to sink you. You 
defend yourself by loading and firing your cannon. If 
you inflict enough damage, you can board the pirate 
ship and read the ship’s log for clues or seize its 
booty. 

I found the mix of action, strategy, and planning 
the most interesting feature of this single person 
game. You have to remember to keep your crew fed, 
to keep notes on which ports give the best deals, and 
to keep track of clues and riddles. In addition you 
must also become efficient in loading your cannon. 
This requires that you practice loading your cannon 
just as sailors had to long ago (put in the powder, 
tamp it down, put in the ball, and brush out the 
barrel). Finally, you are ready to fire the cannon which 
also takes practice since you must judge the correct 
elevation before firing. You are also able to look for 
buried treasure and may have to fight Bloodthroat if 
you meet him while going around the islands. 

The clues and trading features change each time 
you play, but after a few times you can figure the 
game out, and the challenge is not as formidable. 

Pirates performed very well although I did run into 
a few problems. I got stuck a few times when learning 
the game and had to reboot and start over. The cover 
of the box showed a number of interesting graphics 
but the graphics must have been for an ST or Mac 
because the 130XE I used displayed mediocre 
pictures of only about six scenes. In addition, the 
developers advertised “animated graphics” but the 
only animation I saw was a picture of a pirate ship 
moving across the horizon like a homemade arcade 
game. Although sound is used, its use is so minimal 
that it has little impact on the performance of the 
game. 

The traders, on the other hand, are very clever, 
always looking for the highest demand on the various 
items they trade in. Such demands can change 
frequently, and once the word gets out that certain 
items are bringing high prices at certain ports, many 
people try trading them there causing the prices to 
fall. However, if you try to cheat or lower the price too 
much, you arelocked out from doing any trading! A 
good player will take notes to figure out the best 


places for trading and to keep track of the other 
clues. The software simulation from this standpoint is 
quite good. 

Documentation is of average quality. Certain key 
facts were not given which made learning to play a bit 
frustrating. For example, the instructions do not tell 
you that, when loading your cannon, you can load 
several cannons at the same time. It was nearly 
impossible to keep up by trying to load a single 
cannon each time to take a shot at the pirate’s ship. 

I think the game is easy to use. By following the 
instructions and skillfully moving around the joystick, 
you can attain the skills necessary to play the game. 
Pirates of the Barbary Coast by StarSoft Develop¬ 
ment Laboratories should complement anyone’s soft¬ 
ware library. 


fTDC Distributors inc., 3331 Bart/ett Boulevard, 
Or/ando, FL 32811.J 




D & P Computer Supply 

■■■■■f ■■■ 


;.X>X , X , X , X , X , X , X'X , X , X , X , X , X , X , X , X , X , X , ;*lw;'#.jr\*\«:*r+y , X , JWv)'.;M X./av.v.'Xv.vI'/TvX'X'X'X 


Hard Drives 

Atari 20meg - $589.95 

Supra 20meg- $569.95 

Supra 30meg- $749.95 

Supra 45meg- $879.95 

Supra 60meg- $1,299.00 

SUPRA mega hard drives (internal) 

20maa $520 30meo $650 

Modems 

Avatex 1200 -$109.95 

Avatex 1200hc -$129.95 
Avatex 2400 - $239.95 

Supra 2400 - $149,95 
Practical 2400sa- $199.95 
(all modems are external) 
RS232 cable- $14,99 


Nothing fancy generic hard drive 

Economical drive using standard SCSI interface, 

2Dm egs- #499.99 

Star Printers 

NX-10 120cps Draft / 30NLQ Epson FX-80/ibm $173.95 

NX-15 120cps Draft/30NLQ Epson FX-185/lbm 15" carridge $324.95 
NB24-10 216cps Draft / 72cps LQ / 24pin head Ibm/Epson $514.95 
NB24-15 216cps Draft/72cps NLQ/24 pin head/lbm/Epson 15" $ 699.99 

Computer paper 

Memorex 201b- IVORY COLOR- lOOsheets per package $4.50 PER PACK 

STANDARD 91/2’" - 201b mico-perf 2700 sheets per carton $22.00 per case 
STANDARD 14 7/8“ - 20 lb regular edge 2700 sheets per case $33.00 per case 

3 1/2" Disks (box of io’s) 

SONY SS- $12.99 D3-$16.99 

FUJI SS-$12.99 DS-$17.49 

* SPECIAL * 

Supra 2400 + RS232 cable lor $159.95 
And free shipping on tnis order 

Mail payments to: D&P Computer 1 

P.O.Box 811 or CALL 

^residents add 5.5% sales tax) Elyria, Ohio 44036 (2161-926-3842 9am-6prn ^ 


June 1988 


CURRENT NOTES 


Page 63 

























PUBLIC DOMAIN GEMS 


FOR THE ATARI XE/XL 


Daisy-Dot 

I downloaded Daisy-Dot (D- 
D) (Novatari Utility Disk, #10) 
almost two years ago. I was just 
about to send away for an $80 
upgrade chip for my RX-80 so I 
could get NLQ printouts. I’m glad I 
kept my money because I was 
really impressed with D-D! Roy 
Goldman had created a printing 
utility that produced a quality of 
print unavailable in any of the 
printer drivers for 8 bit word pro¬ 
cessors. 

D-D’s features include a 
choice of five fonts, four graphic 
densities, proportional fonts, flex¬ 
ible character spacing, a font edi¬ 
tor, 91 ASCII characters and 14 
commands. D-D comes with a 
complete documentation file that 
takes you through the steps 
necessary to print out a file. 

In short, you take your Atari- 
writer+, Paperclip , Textpro , 
SpeedScript or Letter Perfect file 
and print them to disk. Then you 
load D-D and select your font, file 
to print, density and spacing 
options and you are ready to print. 
D-D does a good job on text files, 
although two-column output is not 
supported. 

This brings us the the best 
part. Somebody called The Wizard 
has taken Roy Goldman’s D-D and 
added more features while making 
it much easier to use—enter Dot- 
Magic (DMG)—the Daisy-Dot II 
program you may have read about 
in computer publications. DMG 
uses D-D fonts and comes with 
nine fonts, prints double width, 
underlines, supports Prowriter as 
well as Epson, allows picture files 
in two sizes to be added to text 
and retains all the other features in 
D-D. DMG also has a correctable 
typewriter mode and a custom 
address label maker with up to 99 
copies. The documentation file is 
a treat to print out and read. It 
demonstrates all the features of 
the program. 

Both programs are included on 
their respective sides of the disk. 
DMG offers even more utilties and 


further documentation if you write 
to the author at the address inclu¬ 
ded on the disk docs. A contribu¬ 
tion is requested and I feel it is 
justified by the sharing of such a 
full-featured program. It may take 
a while to get the feel of the way 
you use DMG's options, but, if you 
want near letter quality output, it is 
worth it! 

—Roy Brooks 

Space Lords 

Okay, I give in. I have tried to 
play Space Lords (Novatari Game 
Disk #16) for several months, but 
just could not get into the game. I 
could not believe that everyone I 
knew that was into games was 
really enjoying Space Lords. And 
then I finally did what I usually 
advise everyone to do—I looked 
on the disk to see if there were 
any text or doc files. Lo and 
behold, there were three of them. 
There was a lot more to the game 
than I had imagined. After setting 
the system up and playing just a 
couple of games, I was actually 
enjoying it. 

Space Lords is a very good 
strategy game with adequate gra¬ 
phics and a reasonable enough 
amount of real time play that 
keeps your hand on the joystick 
during battles to effect a retreat or 
to activate shields against missiles 
launched from command satel¬ 
lites. Since this game can take 
hours, and even days, to play, 
most players will find the SAVE 
game feature particularly useful. 

Just follow the instructions 
and try playing against the com¬ 
puter while it controls two or three 
other Space Lords. Of course, 
these other Space Lords could be 
other players. Attack as many 
planets as possible in the begin¬ 
ning since this will be when they 
are at their weakest, especially if 
you have selected the option that 
allows neutral planets to build 
additional missiles. 

—Alan Friedman 


Print Shop Icons 

Utility Disks #15, #17, and 
#30 are chock full of print shop 
icons, hundreds and hundreds of 
icons. If you are into Print Shop, 
then these disks are for you. There 
are Atari icons, Boy Scout icons, 
cartoon icons, and more. For 
anyone not familiar with Print 
Shop, it is a commercial software 
program for making signs, ban¬ 
ners, cards and letterheads with 
your printer. You select the picture 
(icon) you want to work with from 
your icon disk. The more icons you 
have, the more variety you can 
have in your creations. With these 
disks and the ones that come with 
Print Shop, you should have avail¬ 
able any icon you need. 

—Alan Friedman 

Print Shop Utilities 

You may be wondering what 
you can do with Print Shop icons if 
you don’t own Print Shop. Well, 
Utility Disk #34, can be used to 
make labels that utilize these icons 
or to convert the Print Shop icons 
to Atari DOS format and then 
create labels that not only use 
these icons but print the text in any 
Atari font including some unique 
fonts on this disk. Another utility 
lets you make a directory of the 
icons on a disk (very helpful when 
you are looking for a particular 
font.) 

This is a double-sided disk. 
The front side of the disk consists 
of machine language programs 
and special fonts. The reverse side 
contains additional programs and 
all the documentation files. 

—Alan Friedman 

Adventurer’s Companion 

I don’t have the patience or 
time to figure out long, involved 
text and adventure games. If you 
are like me and have several text 
adventure games lying around that 
you never solved, then Novatari 
Demo Disk #10 may be the grea- 


Page 64 


CURRENT NOTES 


June 1988 

















test disk in the Novatari PD library. This disk contains 
the solutions to 11 different games—not clues to 
help you along, but the actual solutions. With this disk 
you can solve Dark Crystals, Hitchhiker’s Guide, 
Cutthroat, Ghosttown, Infidel, Mask of the Sun, 
Mission Asteroid, Pyramid of Doom, Pirate Adventure, 
Witness and Deadline. This, of course, takes the 
challenge out of these games, but after months- 
-maybe years—of frustration, you may enjoy the 
FINAL SOLUTION. 

—Alan Friedman 

General Ledger & Smartsheet 

From our friends in Australia comes disk #37: The 
General Ledger and Smartsheet. General Ledger s a 
full double-entry bookkeeping system that can 
handle up to 99 accounts and 1000 transactions. The 
documentation is exceptional and there are example 
files on the disk. Smartsheet is a spreadsheet that is 
capable of doing financial forecasting, budgeting and 
can be used as a general spreadsheet. It is in the 
Visicalc/Speedcalc format and also comes with good 
documentation. 

—Alan Friedman 


* mmPUTER 5 UCCE 55 !!* mnOUriEES: 

1-MONITOR BOX 

FOR THE ATARI ST COMPUTER! 

color and mono on 1 monitor!!! 

IH THE PROPER REs'o'lUTi'qHM >ioT A SIMULATidH. SirHEnSSTTfllRT™ 

Finally, just 1 monitor for the ST can produce color and monochrome 
in their proper resolutions with our 1-MONITOR BOX! This is 
not a simulation or approximation, but the true real colors 
your Atari is capable of and excellent monochrome graphics!! This 
monitor with our monitor box can do Atari ST Color and Mono, Atari 8 
bit, IBM CGA,EGA, and even VGA graphics! Finally one monitor for ail 
your computers! Even Mac will work! Unclutter vour desk. The 
combination of our monitor box and monitor will replace your ST 
mono and color monitors & your switch box. If you have an Atari 8 
bit you no longer need that monitor as our monitor has composite 
input. You can even run your VCR thru it or watch TV with a iper 
on this monitor! If you have an IBM PC or compatible, this monitor will 
produce CGA, EGA, and VGA graphics! This is a midtiscan monitor 
capable of 8QQ x 56Q resolution! !! Note on all systems, audio must 
be output thru seperately, because muitiscan monitors do not have 
internal speakers. We provide an audio jack to hook up to your 
stereo or portable radio. Imagine how good Music Studio will sound 
thru your stereo speakers!! For more desk space and a much better 
picture in all resolutions, call us now! 

ST Monitor box-$199 
Muitiscan Monitor $899.99 
BOTH ABOVE $999.99 


JThis Month 7 !" SPECIAL 
:-$199,99 ~{.Monitor Box-$139 

Monitor -$569 

Both-$669 


to ORDER:sehd check or mohey order mComputerSuccsss 
PO Box 3031, Providence,RI,OZ906.cflu.40i-75l-0038 

MASTER AHD UISA ACCEPTED. BUT ADD SX BANK FEE. SHIPPIHG 55 BOX ONLY. 
517 FOR BOX AHD MULTISCAH MONITOR. ALL SALES FIHAL. DEALER INQ. WVIT. 


** Computer S access U* 


PC-on the ST 


RUN SOFTWARE MEANT FOR 
THE IBM PC AH0 COMPATS. 
ON VOUR ST i! 

PC DITTO $63.95 
Microsoft Word PC-$199 
MS Dos 3.2/GW Bas-$73 


PC Hardware 


.EMULATOR? 


RUN PC SOFTWARE ON YOUR 
ST AT TURBO SPEED! HOOK 
TO ST ANO GET FAST PC 
CLQHE 4,77/8 MHZ! BY 
PARADOX. TWO VERSIONS 
AVAILABLE: 

COMPACT 


VERS10N- 
2 SLOTS 


$339.00 


LARGE VERSION 

6 FREE SLOTS $439.00 

ROOM FOR 2 HALF 
HEGHT DEVICES (LIKE HARD OR 
FLOPPY DRIVES] 


j TAKING ORDERS NOW 


1 meg uograde for 520 
soideriess $155.29 
call up to 4 megs aval 


5i/4 m Disk Drive 


for ATARI ST- read or write 
PC comoatibie disks on your 571 
Usa with PC Ditto and turn S i 
into PC Clone! 360k, DSDD! 

only $179.99 !!!!!! 


520 or 1040 ST 


systems starting at 
$499.00 !!!!!!il!!I!I!!H! 

CAU. FOR SYSTEM BEST FOR YOU I 


DESKTOP 

PUBLISHING 

package 

Atari ST computer, monitor, 
laser printer, disk drive, 
publishing partner, all for only 

$2250!!!! 

MEMORY UPGnAOES AVAILABLE! 


PRINTERS: 

STAR NX1Q00 5178 
STAR G15 5289 
STAR PQUERTYPE 5279 
PAHASOHIC 10801 5169 
PAHASOHIC 1091 5199 


CLOSEOUTS !! 


Modems 


100% Hayes 
Compatible. Free online 
time, speaker, volume, 
autoanswer/dial, panel 
lights, full/half duolex 

2400 baud$157.39 
1200 baud $83.99 

MODEM CABLE 59.99 


STAR GEMINI 1J> 
PRINTER 

15" carriage 
fast, exc. buy 

-$599- $179 

STAR POWERTYPE 

PRINTER 

daisy wheel 
letter quality 

.4499- $159 

2 free ribbons with purcnase 
of either printer above !!! 


Hard Drive Kits: 

all you need to build your 
own and save aiot of $$. 
Includes adapter,drive, 
controller, software, & 
mounting kit. You supply 
case/power suDpiy (or 
we will for addltionaD. 

30 Meg-$595 
40 Meg-$675 
60 Meg-$399 

now includes free case & 
power supply nm»»nnnuHnta 


Mac on the ST 


Magic Sac plus-$108 
Translator 1- $249 
Professional- $379 
Mac Microsoft Word $179 
Discovery Cart. $189 

CONVERSION TO MAGIC SAC 
FORMAT AVAILABLE FOR 
ANY MAC SOFTWARE-CALL 
FOR RATES AND FOR ANY 
MAC SOFTWARE YOU NEED!! 


UPGRADES 

upgrade your Atari 20 
meg hard d rive to : 

40 meg-$375°9 
60 meg-$S5CL00 

PRICE INCLUDES TRAOE-iH 


XEP 80 $by 

ST Ccnputereyes $299 $149 

Xetec 8bit interface $29 
5T ST Disk Drive $^[$149 
ST to PC Drive Cable J39 $18 
SF 314 drive(ST) ,$299 $189 

Software Closeouts 
Mac Microsoft Word ViT-V 

B Graph(8 bit) $ST $29 
PrirrtShop-Gr III $5* $19 

Silent Service yti ,$18 
Harrier Strike $40 $18 
Thunder $17 

Skyfox yfi $]0 
Spectrum 512 $39 

Cyberpaint $39 

CAD 3D2.0 ^T$49 
Flash 

Juggler michtm$23 




8* 

1 = 

^8 




igsi 

Eps 

<E X _jO_ 

o3~Xc* 

_juj xuc uu 
_ICCLU<Xin 

<c<io3rj 


[To ORDER:seho check or money order ^Computer Success, PO Box 3031, Wayland Squar e, Providence, Rl, 

02906. PHONE 401-751-0038.master and visa accepted-but add sx for bank fee. add for shipping.- modems, oisk drives, printers 57, 

SOFTWARE 54 FOR TO 4 TITLES. 56 FOR OVER 5 TITLES, SYSTEMS 518. LASER-528, CANADA-56 ADDITIONAL. AP0-54 AD0ITI0HAL. ALL SEHT INSURtALL 
SALES ARE FINAL. WE TAKE TRAOES AND BUY USED EQUIPT. ANO HAVE LARGE SELECTION HOT IN AD SO CALL. ALL ITEMS HEW FAC , 0RY FRESH Wl i n wunrwn. t 

I CALL FOR SPECIALS. SOME QUANTITIES LIMITED. IF YOU WANT IT- WE HAVE DT OR WILL GET 2! PUBLIC DOMAIN STUFF ALSO AVAILABLE AS WELL AS COPY SERV. 


SF 314- 5209 
SF 354- 5129 
GTS 100-5199: 
1050 5163.99 


June 1988 


CURRENT NOTES 


Page 65 




















































































ATARI XE/XL CN REVIEW 


DROPZONE 

Going Defender One Better 

Review by Joe Pietrafesa 


Attention ail Defender fanatics! 
Remember when you played Atari 
Defender in the arcade, on your 
Atari 2600, and even on your Atari 
8—bit? Well, put those memories 
aside because the Defender of the 
future has come on to the scene 
for your Atari 8-bit computer. 

The game, written and created 
by Archer Maclean for the Micro- 
daft company, is called Dropzone. 
Maclean has come up with the 
idea of an old favorite and added a 
brand new twist to the game. 

When the program is being 
loaded, you must hold down the 
Option key. The initial screen pro¬ 
duces an image of the Microdaft 
logo in shiny, metallic letters. After 
a few seconds the game will begin 
to load for game play. Within a 
minute, maybe more, the game will 
be loaded. Brilliant colors engulf 
the upper portion of the screen as 
you see the heading “ Dropzond ’ 
being printed along the top. 
Underneath the heading is the 
creator’s name along with the date 
the game was copyrighted. 

Beneath the heading you 
begin to see just what this game is 
all about. Soon, by merely touch¬ 
ing the Start button, you will come 
face to face with your enemies, 
nine in all, waiting to defeat you. 
You see them in rows of three’s. 
All are deadly, but some not as 
deadly as others. The point score 
for each nemisis is listed next to it. 
A SPORE, for example, is worth 
the most (750) while an undeter¬ 
mined amount is given for killing 
an ANDROID. By pressing the Start 
key or the fire button on your 
joystick, you begin your utterly 
impossible mission. 

When you begin play, you will 
swear you have seen this place 
before. Can it be just like Defen¬ 
ded. In the lower portion of the 
screen is a map of the entire 
surface of the planet. This allows 


you to see where every alien is 
hiding. In the lower left corner are 
the number of troops you have left 
to defeat your foes. In the right 
hand corner you have bombs, 
which, when used, are devastating 
to each and every XENO that is on 
the screen at the time you blast. 

It is Defender, right? Not 
exactly, but here’s the twist. In¬ 
stead of one spaceship fighting 
against mutants, you are one 
lonely human, carrying an anti¬ 
gravity, jet-propelled backpack 
and a heavy duty laser, your only 


...you are one lonely 
human, carrying an 
antigravity, jet- 
propelled backpack and 
a heavy duty laser.... 


weapons with which to destroy the 
menacing aliens. Another dif¬ 
ference is your ability to gain a 
force field. By pressing any key on 
the keyboard of your computer, 
you will be able to activate your 
cloak. The cloak is a type of force 
field that will protect you from the 
fire of your enemies. The cloak 
only lasts a short amount of time 
so be careful to use it wisely, but 
it is a great defense for stopping 
the aliens. 

The object of your mission is 
very simple: try to save all of your 
men from the aliens and wipe the 
aliens out at the same time. Sound 
easy? Well, watch out! Like 
Defender, the aliens try to catch 
your men on the surface and bring 
them up to the top. Be careful, 
because once your men are tou¬ 
ched by an alien they become 
androids, and if you try to help 
them, they will only kill you. So 


you must destroy them before they 
destroy your other men or even 
you! 

Simulated game play as seen 
by Joe Pietrafesa: 

My human appears in the mid¬ 
dle of the screen, right above the 
home base, his laser on and ready 
to go. 

I can see my men along the 
surface. They are waiting to be 
saved. As I look on the screen and 
at the map, I can see swarms of 
angry aliens just waiting for battle. 

I move down to pick up a man, 
and I am attacked by three PLAN¬ 
TERS! I manage to destroy all of 
those enemies and bring my man 
to safety (one of the seven to be 
rescued). I see five more PLAN¬ 
TERS on the horizon. I decide 
there are too many to handle for 
one person. I make sure all of 
them are on the big screen; then I 
press the space bar. BOOM! Every 
single one is destroyed by the 
bomb I just dropped. 

I see three more men. I can 
only get one at a time, so I pick up 
the farthest one away. There is 
only one more enemy so I pursue 
him, knowing I have the advan¬ 
tage. I am getting closer. 

Now I see he has one of my 
men. Oh no! I desperately try to 
shoot, but the PLANTER gets to 
the top of the screen. He now 
turns into a NEMESITE, which is 
crazier than a PLANTER. He is 
quick, and he catches me. A col¬ 
orful explosion appears as my hero 
desintegrates into tiny particles. 

Only two more troops left, but 
no more aliens either. I pick up the 
rest of the men and clear the 
board. I receive a 700-point bonus 
for saving seven men. (100 x 7). 

Now comes the second board 
which is more challenging than the 
first. Right away I use a bomb 
because the enemy are just 


Page 66 


CURRENT NOTES 


June 1988 










CN REVIEW 


ATARI XE/XL 


swarming. Next I use my cloak. 
This gives me just enough time to 
destroy some SPORES and one 
BLUNDER STORM. The cloak 
wears off, and I am doomed. 
Immediately I am shot and blown 
up. 

This is my last chance to save 
the world. I end up saving four 
more men. I see more PLANTERS, 
three left to be exact. I decide to 
use my last bomb. Wait ... Wait... 
Now! I drop the bomb. I only got 
two of the enemy. One is left. My 
score is 9900. The PLANTER 
chases me. I try to outrun and 
outgun him, but to no avail. He 
catches me, and once again, I am 
destroyed. But that pushes me 
over the 10,000-point mark, and I 
am able to put my name in the 
Dropzone Hall of Fame. 

Overall, I thought this was an 
excellent game because I used to 
love Defender. The graphics are 
excellent, and the colors and 
sound are superior to normal 
games played on the 8-bit. My 
only problems with this game were 
that at first it was hard to control 
my hero with the joystick. I found it 
difficult to manuever and shoot at 
the same time, but, with a little 
practice, I was able to get the 
hang of it. Also, I found it 
extremely difficult to handle the 
joystick and to press the Space 
Bar in order to activate the bomb 
and even the cloak. At times I 
found myself having to stop to 
look at the keyboard to try to find 
the Space Bar; while I was looking, 
my man would be destroyed. 

If you can live with these 
flaws, then the challenge awaits 
you. Can you save the planet from 
evil and deadly aliens? If you think 
you can, then what are you waiting 
for? By now you should find your¬ 
self being transferred into the 
Dropzond. 

[Microdaft, 19 Harbor Drive, Lake 
Hopatcong, NJ 07849, (201) 663- 
0202. List price is $24.95.] 


Is your 5,25" ST compatible drive 
making a monkey out of you? 

\ Do you have to constantly plug 
& unplug your drive because the 
Atari ST only lets you have access to 
your first two drives? Then you need our 

THIRD DRIVE CABLE - $31.95 

NO more unplugging necessary. 

★ Switch between your 2nd & 3rd 

St drives at the touch of a button. 
Works with any Atari St system. 

« Replaces existing short ST drive 
cable with 6* cable, 
a Takes up as little room as your 
old cable did. 
a Just plug it in and go. 

" 6-month warranty 

To order contact your nearest dealer or: 

llllll erchandising 
15W615 Diversey 
Elmhurst, IL 60i26 
T3121 530-0988 DEALER INQUIRIES WELCOME. 



1 




DBS 


m rag 


0 TIC SPOT DESKTOP IMS KMC FOR MM SCANNERS. IT MIS SI 

mo» he modified it, si even if nu mn<t have i sawn, yo» cm 

GET THE FULL USE MO PLEASURE OF SUCH I OESRTW. THIS PRAGRM 
USES SLIBIM NEHUS AM ICtHS TO 10 FROM OK JM Tl TK NEXT, ITS ! 
WOE HITH TIE USER IN KIM. THERE IS HIT MOTHER FROIRAH LIRE 
THIS FOR TK ST. MM TflU CAN CREITE THINGS VON ONLY WISHED KFORE 
K MVE SOLI SI HMV IT THESE PRIORAHS IN EUR WE IN TK LAST I 
MONTHS, THAT HE CREATED A SAMPLE PRMRIH THAT HILL ALLflM VOI TO 
TEST THE EASE OP TK PROGRW. ALTER PICTURES, HOST THEH.SJMM 
EXPAND IKK,SLOW THEM UP,ROTATE THEM. TKSE ARE JUST A FEW THUMB 
m CAN M. THERE ARE SO NAKV OPTIONS Tl THIS PROGRAM ITS NEST Tl 
TRY TK SAMPLE OR IUV THE ORIGHAL. ^ 

THE SPSI MS*...8681,,®® SSKPU! Iffifflffi) ...888.M 

gras son nueBfsn........ s^.ibi 

m srn ms<9M) m tan 


0 LRBEL PROP.. THIS PRO SUB HAS MADE FM OTHER PRMR AKERS' 
TBS PROGRAM ALUMS SUCH FREEDOM IN DESIGNING YOU OHH LABELS, ANY 
SHAPE OR SIZE. THIS PRMRM HAS ALMOST TK SAME ICONS AND SLIDING 
KNUS AS THE SPAT KSKTOP ABOVE. IT IS HSER FRIENDLY. ANCE YN I 
MAT EACH ICON MES.TKH THE SRVS TK LIMIT. HE ALSO CREATED A I 
SnPtE PROGRAM FOR YMR USE,TO SHOW VOO THAT THIS PROGRAM IS TK 
KST ON THE MARKET, ^ i 

LABEL PRWFESIOHAL, .I55.BI SMILE PRMRAH..JhJMM ‘ 

mrr smrur smn.es jou u aemm m* mm m auum \ 
IMTfl UeBlflG.P.O. BOM 10153.COLO 5PFSIDG5 
COLO. 80909 719-596-0135 


June 1988 


CURRENT NOTES 


Page 67 















CUIOBIENT NOTES ST ILIIIBICaVIBT 


JUNE, 1988 

#250: CLIP ART NO. 11: Food 

2. 22 more screens of clip art of 
food-related pictures. Converted 
from Macintosh pics. Tinyview. 
296K. 

#249: CLIP ART NO. 10: Food 

1. 27 screens of clip art of food- 
related pictures. Converted from 
Macintosh pics. Tinyview. 333K. 
#248: CLIP ART NO. 9: Whim- 
sey. 21 screens of whimsical clip 
art converted from Macintosh pics. 
Picswitch07, tinyview. 297K 
#247: CLIP ART NO. 8: Sports. 
24 screens of clip art for sporting 
events converted from Macintosh. 
Picswitch07. Tinyview. 282K 
#246: CLIP ART NO. 7: Mac Art 

2. Mac Art Library (28-51). 24 
screens of Macintosh clip art. 325K. 
Picswitch07, Tinyview. 

#245: CLIP ART NO. 6: Mac Art 
1. Mac Art Library (1-27). Conver¬ 
sion of 27 screens of Macintosh 
clip art. 322K. 

#244: MIDIPLAY DEMO. Demo 
of MIDIPLAY, Version 4.25 by Elec¬ 
tronic Music Publishing House. In¬ 
cludes two songs: Mozart Gavotte 
and Bach G Minuet 2. Demo will 
play without a MIDI instrument, but 
to make full use of demo, a MIDI 
instrument is required. 

#243: BOWLMAN, Version 1.22. 
A shareware program by George 
Terpening, Bowling Manager. This 
will help you keep track of bowling 
statistics for yourself, your team, 
and your league (up to 6 teams—a 
more complete version is available 
if you register). Single-sided disk, 
files ARC’d. 

#242: UTILITY NO. 24 ARC 

SHELL II version 1.91 with disk and 
folder commands from within the 
shell. Desk Manager version 2.1 
allows greater control on system 
bootup. Ledbetter Utilities 
(L UTILS) is a collection of four 
very useful utilities from the person 
that wrote the Express series of 
term and BBS programs. M2GRV2 
is another manager program for 
those that use the Tempus editor 
with the TDI Modula-2 package 
rather than the editor that is inclu¬ 
ded in that package. VT PRO is a 
powerful! editor of VT52 graphics. 
DEGASAVE (from the ARC 
DEGASNAP) is the program that 
redirects the Alt-Help key com¬ 
bination so that the screen is saved 
in DEGAS format instead of being 


sent to the printer. 

#241: VDOS (Virtual Disk 
Operating System) A shareware 
graphic interface from Marathon 
Press that allows easier access to 
your frequently used programs. 
This interface includes many com¬ 
mand options frequently contained 
within command line interfaces 
(CLI’s) but is much easier to use. 
This disk is a must if you have a 
hard disk and frequently use a 
variety of programs in one session. 
#240: Game Disk No. 14 BOG 
vl .2 (Boggle clone with dictionary) 
a word-finding game; Core Wars 
(based on Scientific American arti¬ 
cles, a knowledge of assembly 
language programming is recom¬ 
mended); Escape (a pretty good 
adventure-type maze). All three 
games run in either medium or 
high resolution. 

MAY, 1988 

#239: CLIP ART NO. 5: Holidays 
and Headers. 28 screens full of 
excellent clip art. Disk includes 
PICSW7 and DSLIDE. For color or 
monochrome. 

#238: PUBLISHING PARTNER 
UTILITY NO. 2. New PP fonts 
(CYRILLIC, HELVETIC, HUDSON, 
and SATURN). Printer Drivers 
(HPD, HPF, LQ1000F, NECP7D, 
NECP7F, and PS_PLUS). Font 
Editor (w/docs) for creating your 
own PP fonts. 

#237: MUSIC STUDIO SONGS 

NO. 7. 35 more Music Studio 
songs. Disk includes 2 PD song 
players and a program to convert 
the 8-bit Advanced Music System 
(AMS) songs to Music Studio for¬ 
mats. 

#236: PLAYIT DEMO NO. 2. 

More digitized sounds for your ST: 
ADAM12, DRAGNET, MRED, 
SUBETHER, and SYNCLOCK. 
#235: CYBER DEMO DISK. 
(Four animations: CAMFILM, 
PSLOGO, RAISINS, and SAUCERB, 
with ANIMATE3.PRG) 

#234: UTILITY DISK NO. 23. 
DSKSCAN1—ST Floppy Disk 
Manager VI .0/2.0, by Todd Burkey. 
DSL1DE2—Deluxe Slideshow V2.0, 
shows all popular ST picture file 
formats. HDOPTIMZ—Atari ST File 
System Checker and Repairer, VI.1 
and File System Compacter, by 
Barry Locklear. MEMFILE—Mem- 
File VI .3, a desk ACC to view and 
edit any portion of ST’s memory, a 
file on any disk drive, or the 


individual sectors of any drive. 
PENICILN - virus killer program. 
SDDFR12—Super Directory Data 
File Reader. 

#233: SHEET. This is a shareware 
spreadsheet program by Mr. Chor- 
ming Lung. Complete docs inclu¬ 
ded on disk. 

#232: MODULA-2 SOURCE 
DISK NO.4. GEMMODUL—a very 
useful and large assortment of 
modules that ease the use of GEM 
functions. MATHTRAP—a collec¬ 
tion of modules for adding more 
math functions. THEACC—an ACC 
that gives 2 formatting formats, 
numerous copying options and disk 
DOS type commands ail in one 
ACC. 

#231: C SOURCE DISK No. 8. 

Another collection of C source 
code. HACKSORC—source to the 
game HACK. PENICILN—contains 
the source code to an ACC to help 
protect against computer virus’ as 
well as the ACC itself. 

#230: MONO GAME DISK NO. 
5. CRIBBAGE—play the computer 
in a game of Cribbage; DRAW- 
POKR—A very well-done game of 
draw poker. Also runs in color. 
MEGAMA11—Mega Maze 1.1 
requires a joystick and is an adven¬ 
ture maze of sorts. Also runs in 
color. 

APRIL, 1988 

#229 - EASY DRAW UTILITY 
DISK. Fonts: (Chicago 
7,10,14,18,28,36; Courier 
7,10,14,18,28,36; and Calig 
(7,10,14,18,28,36); Easy Draw Art 
(18 GEM Pics: addressbk, alphabet, 
assetpl, asset-p2, assissi, 
box brd, callig, clip-tmp, dailycal, 
disk_lbl2, hitech, linebrd, 
pd_art_1, pd art_2, rocky, scrolbrd, 
swiss, vhsjbl) 

#228 - SUPERCHARGED EASY 
DRAW SLIDE DEMO (mono¬ 
chrome). A self-running demo of 
the capabilities provided by 
Migraph’s new Super Charged Easy 
Draw. 

#227 - CASTING D’ENTERPR- 
ISES by Propulse. An impressive 
demo of the animation and gra¬ 
phics capabilities of the ST. This 
French “film” runs for about 7 1/2 
minutes. 

#226 - FRACTAL ZOOM VER¬ 
SION 6.A. This unique program 
lets you create a variety of fractals 
both at full screen resolution as well 
as in a smaller “preview” box. 


Page 68 


CURRENT NOTES 


June 1988 















Animation options lets you turn 
your fractals into a zooming movie, 
(color) 

#225 - BREACH & EMPIRE- 14 
additional scenarios for use with 
BREACH. A collection of maps for 
EMPIRE players as well as the 
fixsave.prg which allows owners of 
older versions of EMPIRE to use 
the play-by-mail option. 

#224 - TOY PROLOG. This 
language operates exactly like the 
system described in Programming 
in Prolog by Clockrin & Mellish. 
(Note complete docs, but they are 
in GERMAN!). 

#223 - C SOURCE DISK NO. 7. 

C source programs for ARC.TTP, a 
C compiler, formatting disks at 11 
sectors/track, disk formatting pro¬ 
gram, code for accessing TNY file 
formats, and a cross assembler to 
6809 CPU-based systems. 

#222 - DESK PAK PLUS 
(Shareware) 10 desk accessories in 
a single file: clock, calendar, phone 
book, calculator, appuointments, 
free ram, note pad, copy file, delete 
file, desktop. 

#221 - UTILITY DISK NO. 22: 

ARCSHELL Version 1.8; ARC 
Accessory; DCFORMAT acc.; DIS- 
KFREE (speeds up - 10 fold - 
GEMDOS diskfree() function); 
FOLDRXXX (takes care of 40 folder 
limit in TOS); FSELV55 (replace¬ 
ment for GEM file selector box); 
SUPER BOOT 3.2 (all-in-one type 
boot program). 

#220 - UTILITY DISK NO. 21: 

YOUR 1ST UTILITY DISK. Micro- 
Time Alarm Clock, ST Ramdisk and 
Printer Buffer, Clock/Calendar, 
ASCII Printout, DeARChiver, Disk 
Manager, Disk Directory Listing 
Program, and Accessory Selector 
and Resolution Setter. 

MARCH, 1988 

#219: DBMAN DEMO DISK. 

Demo version of the latest release 
(Ver 4.0) of dBMAN. Databases 
limited to a maximum of 20 
records. 

#218D: PLAY IT. (DS) Programs 
to input a sound file from ST Replay 
and output a file that can be played 
with either of the two player pro¬ 
grams provided. Disk includes a 
collection of ready to play SND 
files. Here your ST Talk! 

#217: MUSIC STUDIO NO. 6. 
Another 70+ songs for use with 
Music Studio. Includes PD player to 
create your own music albums. 


Works MIDI (C) 

#216: MUSIC STUDIO NO. 5. 

Over 70 new songs for use with 
Music Studio. PD player to create 
your own music albums. MIDI (C). 
#215D: A.I.M., Ver 2.3 (DS). 
Atari Image Management System 
(color or mono). Sophisticated 
image manipulation program from 
Germany that lets you perform 
math on images (can read in NEO 
and DEGAS pics). 

#214: SPECTRUM 512 MOVIE 
ANIMATION. Imitation of Amiga 
demo that shows 4 monitor 
screens at the same time each with 
a different animated display. 

#213: MONO GAME DISK NO. 
5. Adventure writing system; 
Daleks - graphic strategy game; 
Krabat2 - play chess against the 
computer; Stocks and Bonds; Eli¬ 
minator - interesting variation of 
card game; breakout.acc and 
reversi.acc. 

#212: MONO GAME DISK NO. 

4. Spacewar - battle Klingon crui¬ 
ser; Megaroids - Asteroids clone, 
Runner (great arcade game!), 
Squixx (like QIX). 

#211: GAME DISK NO. 13 For 
Younger Kids: 2 music prgs (Kid- 
music and Kidpiano); Make your 
own Mr. Potatoe Head with KidPo- 
tato; and KidMixup - display pics 
that tell a story. 

#210: GAME DISK NO. 12 2 

vers of Pacman; create jigsaw 
puzzles from DEGAS pics; drive 
race car around track; drive car to 
top of hill in widow maker, make 
yourself invincible in Time Bandit. 
#209: GAME DISK NO. 11 . Try 
your hand at Las Vegas: Poker, 
Black Jack, Roulette, and Slots. 
(C). 

FEBRUARY, 1988 

#208: GAME DISK NO. 10. Mil- 
borne; G-Ranger; NIM; Trucker; 
and Darts (C). 

#207: STATISTICALLY 

ACCURATE BASEBALL. Share¬ 
ware baseball strategy game (no 
graphics) includes data for four 
teams: ‘62 Giants, ‘70 Reds, ‘84 
Cubs, and ‘86 Mets (C) 

#206: UTILITY DISK #20. Ver 
2.05 of BOOTUP (set screen and 
text colors on bootup; Epson font 
editor; calculator and limited 
screen plotter; fast disk copier; 
convert IFF picture files to Spec¬ 
trum format; show Spectrum,Degas 
and NEO pics from one slide 


program; convert AIM files to 
DEGAS. 

#205: SPECTRUM SPACE PIC¬ 
TURES NO. 2. Apollo9,10; Astrol; 
Earth1,2; Earthris; Lem. 
spslide8.prg. 

#204: SPECTRUM SPACE PIC¬ 
TURES NO. 1. Crab, Earth, Moon- 
flag, Orion, Nasa_p01,2,3, patchl, 
spslide8.prg.(C) 

#203: SPECTRUM ANIMATED 
BALLS DEMO. 5 metal balls, 
hanging from rack, with first and 
last alternately swinging out and in. 
(C). 

#202D: CYBER DEMOS AND 
UTILITIES. 4 animations: Chasers, 
Elmsk31c, scout, and texture, con¬ 
tains routines to create shadows 
and splines within CAD-3D.V2.0 (C) 
DSDD &1MB. 

#201: FLASH & INTERLINK 
UPDATES. All the files on this disk 
require either Flash 1.51 or Interlink. 
Prgs to create Flash DO files, to 
auto download and auto logon, to 
update Flash 1.51 to ver 1.52. 
Interlink files for ANSI emulation 
VI. 12, and TXF transfer protocols 
including multixy which allows file 
transfers in the background. 

#200. TELECOM DEMO DISK. 3 
ARC’d working demos of new ter¬ 
minal programs: VTX< KIS and ST 
Talk Professional. 

#199: MUSIC CONSTRUCTION 
SET SONGS. 32 songs w/ 
player. (C/M) 

#198: MUSIC STUDIO SONG 
DISK 4. 75 songs w/player. (C) 
#197. MUSIC STUDIO SONG 
DISK 3. 65 Songs w/player (C). 
#194: VANTERM Version 2.3. 
New release (3/24) of this super 
terminal emulation package. 

#176: ST WRITER ELITE, Ver. 
2.52. Latest version (3/20). Sup¬ 
ports multiple printers. English, 
German, and Spanish. Complete 
documentation. _ 

All CURRENT NOTES Disks are 
$4.00 each. Add $1/(6 disks) for 
postage and handling. Order disks 
from CN LIBRARY, 122 N. Johnson 
Road, Sterling, VA 22170. 

Discounts are available for 
larger orders. 10 or more disks 
($3.80 each); 20 or more ($3.60 
each); 30 or more ($3.40 each); 40 
or more ($3.20 each). 50 or more 
($3.00 each). Maximum charge of 
$6 for postage and handling. 

Pinfeed disk labels for 3.5" disks 
are available for $4/100. 


June 1988 


CURRENT NOTES 


Page 69 

















CURRENT NOTES MACIIC LIBRARY 


These disks contain Mac programs in “Magic” 
format for use with the MAGIC SAC Macintosh 
emulator. Disks are $4.00 each. Order from CN 
Library, 122 N. Johnson Rd, Sterling, VA 22170. 
Add $1/6 disks for S&H. 


MO: MAGIC SAC. Version 4.52, (or the most 
recent ver) of MAGIC program. 

M2: TELECOM DISK No.1. BinHex 5 0, Free 
Term 1.8, FreeTerm.Doc, Kermit, Packlt III 
(VI .3), Stufflt 1.0, TermWorks 1.3. 

M3: UTILITY DISK No.1. DES, Font Doubler, 
MacDump, Mini Finder, Packlt III (VI.3), Reverse 
Screen l.Obl, RMover, Scan, Set File. SLICER. 
Version Reader 1.1, Write Stream. 

M4: GAME DISK No.1. Backgammon, Bash 
Big Blue, Curves, MacLuff, MacYahtezee, Maze 
3D, Meltdown, Missile Command, Munch, Pep- 
siCas,Smile, Snow, Solitaire, Space Bubbles, 
Vax Runner II. 

M5: DISK LIBRARIAN. Disk Librarian V1.82A. 
Disk Librarian Doc, Short Doc. Contains listing 
Of CN MAGIC LIBRARY. 

M6: GAME DISK No.20. Ashes, Black Box, 
Destroyer, HexPuzzle, Killer Kalah, MacPoly 
Demo, Office Attack, Point Symmetry Demo, 
Snake, Solitaire, Trophy List, Wall Game, 
Wheel. 

M7: GAME DISK No.3. Ashes, Break the 
Bricks, Deep Ennui, Go, Mac Gunner, MacBugs, 
MacCommand, MacYahtzee, Wiz Fire 1.1 

M8: DESK ACCESSORIES No.1. 3DTTT 
Game, Art Thief, Ascii, Bagels Game, Big Ben, 
Calculator, CopyFile, DA Tester 1.5, Delete File, 
Desk Acc. Tester, DeskZap 1.2, Eject&Reset, 
Extras, File Hacker DA, File Tools, Font Grap- 
per+, Font GrapperS, Hex Calculator, HP 12c, 
MemScan, MemWindow, MerriMac Blackjack, 
miniWriter, MockTerminal, MockWrite, Moire, 
MW Count, Other 3.0, Puzzle, Reader, Rubik’s 
Cube, Sampler, Scrapbook, Scientific Calcula¬ 
tor, SetFile 3.3, SkipFinder, TheBox, Tiler 1.5, 
Trails, Transfer, TrapList, Utils, Word Count, 
Zoom Idle. 

M9: UTILITY DISK No.2. Bind Icons, Change 
Appl. Font, Convert Desk Acc., Desk Accessory 
Mover, File Hacker, FontDoubler, Index, Make- 
Screen, MicroFinder, Purgelcons, RamAStart 
1.3, REdit, ResEd, SelectPaint, Show Version, 
User Interface Demo. 

M10: GRAPHICS DISK No.1 Amy, ArtistO, 
ball demo, Big Ben, Brooke, Bugs, Curves, 
Display Message, Dragon, Fighting 51, Fourth 
Dimension, GARF, HotSex!, Liar’s Club, Living 
Art, Max Headroom, Moire 3.0, Nightmare, 
Optical Illusion, Paint Grabber, Painter’s Helper 
#1, Pattern*, Pisces, Rotations, Saddle, The 
Fourth Docs, ViewPaint 1.5. 

Mil: PRINT UTILITIES. Coventry-12, Disk 
Labeler, Fast Eddie, Font Mover, Ink, MacWrite 
4.5 to Text, miniWriter, MockWrite, Pica-10, 
ReadMacWrite, Walla Walla-9. 

M12: MACBILLBOARD. Chipmunks, Donald 
& daisy, Goofy At Bat, Announcement, Babe 
Ruth, Carrotprint, Classic illusions, Escher, 
Escher Hands, MacBILLBOARD (MacPaint 
clone), Max, Mickey and Minney, mm, Quick 
Tour, T-Shirt. 

M13: FONT DISK No.1. Akashi, AlgBlurb, 
Algebra, Athens, Boxie, Dover, Geneva, Hood 
River, ImageWriter, LED, London, Los Angeles, 
Luxor, Mars, Monaco, Park Ave, Pica, Ravenna, 
Rome, Runes, San Francisco, Seattle, Steel 
Brush, Ultra Bodoni. 

M14: FONT DISK No.2. Bookman, Courier, 
Coventry, Dali, Genevaa, Hebrew, Manteco, 
Shadow Box, Sri Lanka, Times, Walla Walla, and 
font display 4.6 w/docs. 


M15: GAME DISK No.4. Alice, Amps 
3.0(B2), Bricks, Canfield 2.0,lago, Lets Get 
Tanked!, MacHeads, Nim, Space Attack, Third 
Dimension. 

Ml6: FONT DISK No.3. About Lachine, 
Alice, Avante Garde, Berkeley, Broadway, 
Camelot, Cartoon, Centura, Chancery, Eon, 
Exeter, Fallingwater, Fantaste Key, Fantaste!, 
Future, Ham, Helvitica, Hollywood, Lachine, 
Lineal, Madrid, Pittsubrg, San Quentin, Silicon 
Valley, Stencil, Unicoi plus DAFont2.da and 
SysFonts.da. 

Ml7: DUNGEONS OF DOOM 4.0 Graphic 
adventure game. 

M18: DESK ACCESSORIES No.2. About 
Popup.txt, Alarm clock, Art Grapper+, Calcula¬ 
tor, Choose Scrapbook*, DA File, DA Tester 
1.5, Disk Labeler, Disklnfo 1.45 + SICNs, 
Explorer, Gone Fishin’, Hex Calc, Label Maker, 
MemWindow, MiniWRITER 1.34, Multi-Scrap- 
book, MW 4.5 Counter.DA, Popup 1.0, Pro- 
Count, ReadiPrinter, Ruler, SFstartup 1.0, 
Skipfinder 6.1, Sleep, Stars 1.6, Stars II, Sys- 
fonts, TeaTime, Timer. 

Ml9: PINBALL CONSTRUCTION SET 
GAMES. Pinball Construction Set Player plus 
12 Games: Apple, Black Hole, Face, KalinBall, 
Madonna, Minute-Mag, Patchwork Mess, 
Phantom, Pure-Gemme, Samurai, The Royal 
Pain, Wizards Lair. 

M20: GAME DISK No.5 Chase Em, Crystal 
Raider, Daleks, Golf MacWay, Kill File, Kill, 
King, King.MacWrite, On-The-Contrary, 

StuntCopterl .2. 

M21: GAME DISK No.6. Guess, Hacker’s 
Contest, Hot Air Balloon, Match, Ramml.0, 
Third Dimension, Trick-Track, Utaan Attack, 
Zero Gravity. 

M22: GRAPHICS DISK No.2 BlowUp 3 0, 
Blowup Notes, CalendarMaker 2.2.1, Dynamo, 
Graphic, MadMenus, Math21, Rays, Simutree, 
Spiro, Tree, Vanlandingham. 

M23: VAMPIRE CASTLE. Graphic adven¬ 
ture game. 

M24: DEEP ANGST. Graphic adventure 
game. 1 Mb ST only. 

M25: GAME DISK No.7. Billiards, Cross 
Master Demo, Flash Cards, Hangman-9.0, 
MacLuff, Master Guess, Safari 1.0, Venn. 

M26: GRAPHICS DISK No.3 3D Sketch, 
AniRama, Bin/Graphics, Brownian Motion, 
Control, Fractal Contours, Fractals, Icon Col¬ 
lector, Julia, MakePaint, Melting Clock, Small 
View, ShapeArt, StarFlight, Window Demo. 

M27: UTILITY DISK No.3 Browse/Shazam!, 
Clocks: analog & digital, Edit, FEdit 3.0, launch, 
lazymenu, Magic Beep 1.0, Menu Editor, 
microFinder, Quick Dir, Quick Print, Ram- 
Start2.0+, Road Atlas, ShrinkToFit, SicnEdit, 
SortMenu, SortMenu Code, SuperFinder4.0, 
TabsOut, Unpit, WayStation. 

M28: RED RYDER 7.0. Red Ryder 7.0, Red’s 
7.0 stuff, RR7.0 Macros, RR Docs. 

M29: PCS PLAYER No.2. Pinball Construc¬ 
tion Set Player plus Games: Circus Circus, D 
&D , Diadora, Max, Merlin, Modern Mistress, 
Queston, The Royal Pain, Twilight Zone, 
Whazit. 

M30: GAME DISK No.8. Bowl-A-Rama, 
MacTrek 1.1, Mystery Box 1.0, Shots, Star Trek 
Trivia Quiz, Window Blaster 1.0. 

M31: BLACK WIZARD. Graphic adventure 
game by Richard Loggins. 

M32: FONT DISK No.4. Canberra, Chicago, 
Humanistic, Music, New Dali, Palencia Appli¬ 
cation, Palo Alto, Pioneer Shadow plus F/DA 
sorter and Font Tester. 


M33: CLIP ART No.1. Aircraft, Business, Car 
Logos, Cars & Trucks, Clip Art Demo, Disney, 
Eyeballs, Flowers, Misc, Seasons Jreesl, 
Trees2, ViewPaint 1.5. 

M34: GAME DISK No.9. 1000 Miles, 

Asteroids, Cairo ShootOut!, Donkey Doo, Duck 
Hunt, Pentel.0. 

M35: FONT DISK No.5. Beehive, Beverly 
Hills, Boise, Chicago, Courier, DeStijl, Ham, 
Happy Canyon, Helvitica, Mod. Chicago, Old 
English, Square Serrif, Sri Lanka, Worksheet. 

M36: CASTLE OF ERT. Shareware graphic 
adventure game. 

M37: MAC-A-MUG PRO DEMO. Version 
1.0, Create your own mug shots by combining a 
variety of different facial features. 

M38: VIDEO WORKS PLAYER #1. PD 

player for Video works animated screens. In¬ 
cludes 11 movies. 

M39: DEMO DISK #2. Demos of Anatomiser 
(learn human anatomy), DeskPaint (desk acc 
MacPaint clone), and SuperPaint (graphic pro¬ 
gram with both MacPaint and MacDraw fea¬ 
tures). 

M40: HACK, Version 1.03. Game is similar to 
Rogue, includes manual with full docs. 

M41: RADICAL CASTLE. Graphic/text 
adventure game. 

M42: FONT DISK No.6. 15 new fonts: Berlin, 
Boston II, Courier, Dorza, Highwood, MicroBos- 
ton, MiniBoston, New York, Palo Alto, Sparta, 
Stiletto, Symbol, Tatooine, Venice, Wartburg. 

M43: UTILITIES No.4. DiskDup*, MacSnoop 
1.03, RamDisk* 1.4, ResTools 2.01, Oasis 2.01 
(HFS), Font Librarian (HFS), Switch. 

M44: FONT DISK No.7. 18 new fonts: 42nd 
Street, Aldous, Art Deco, Ascii, Blockbuster, 
Border, Clairvaux with docs, Coptic, Deep Box, 
Ivy League, Klingon, Las Vagas, Little Box, 
Madrid, Memphis, Minneapolis, Rivendell, 
Spokane. 

M45: GAME DISK No. 10 Blackjack 4 0, 
Gunshy 1.0, Humpback, New Social Climber, 
Panic, Puzzle 1.0, Star Trek Trivia Quiz, Video 
Poker. 

M46: DA DISK No. 2. 35 DAs: 3D Tic- 
Tac-Toe, A-Bus ID Poker, Abacus, Calendar, 
CheapPaint, Collapse, ConCode, Crabs2, 
DAFile, DAFont, Disp.Msg, Double Apple, Exe¬ 
cutive Decision, FatMouse, FixPic2.0, Flow, Fun 
House, Func Keys, Font, Idle, KeyMouse, 
KnockOut, Multi-Scrap, MW to Text, New 
MiniDos, Orig Clock, PaintDA, Poker, ProCount, 
Ruler, Titerl.5, Time!ogger2.11, Utilities, Wrap, 
WXModem, Sample It. 

M47: GRAPHICS No.4. Cursor Designer, 
Earthplot3.0, Graphics2.0, Mondrianl.0, 
MotionMaker2.0, Moving Finger, Wallpaper, 
Zoomation. 

M48D: HYPERSTACKS No.1 Address, 
Databook, Fractal, Funy Day, Home Desk, 
HyperNews 1.2, HyperZoetropes, MacGallery, 
MacVermont #2, Notebook, Periodic Table, and 
ResEditIPS. (Double-Sided) 

M49D: HYPERSTAKCS No.2 Ear, Illusions, 
Passing Notes, Shipstack, Silly, and US States 
V2. (Double-Sided) NOTE M48 and M49 require 
HyperDA and some form of DA tester (Sample 
It! on M46 or DA Tester 1.5 on M8 or M18). 

M50: FONTS #8. Alderney 9-48; Cairo 18; 
Cyrillic 12; Greek 10,20; Paint 18; Playbill 
12,18,24; Rehovot 10,12,20,24; Runes 12,24; 
Washington 12; Zodiac 18. 

M51: GAME DISK NO. 11. Bouncing Balls, 
Fire Zone, Mac Word Hunt 2.0, Out Flank, Risk 
and Word Search. 


Page 70 


CURRENT NOTES 


June 1988 








NOV ATARI XL/XE PUBLIC DOMAIN LIBRARY 


The price for mail orders is $3 per 
disk plus $1 for postage and 
handling for every 3 disks. Send 
checks, payable to NOV ATARI, to 
Alan Friedman, 5951 Heritage 
Square Drive, Burke, VA 22015. 

Any user group librarians who are 
willing to trade library disks write 
or call Roy Brooks, 4020 Travis 
Parkway, Annadale, VA. 22003, 
phone 703 750 0146. We trade 
with groups all over the world. 

Demos 

1: Miscellaneous 
2: Movie Maker Clips 
3: Heavy Metal Art 
4: Miscellaneous 
5: Desktop DOS + Demos 
6: VizPics 

7: Mandelbrot factal graphics 
8: Hitchhiker’s Guide to Galaxy 
9: WIZARD ofOZ 
10: Adventurers Companion 

Education 

1: Mathematics 
2: Primary Language 
3: Teachers’ Toolbox 
4: Word Builder 1.0 
5: Animated stories 
6: Geography 

7: Bio+Chem with touch typing 
8: Basic Math 

9: Higher Math and Language 

10: The Cell 

11: Spelling Bee 

12: Math Game 

13: Word Games 

Games 

1: Text Adventures I 
2: Gambling 
3: Simulations 
4: Mazes 
5: Parlour Games 
6: Graphics 
7: Action! Games 
8: Arcade Look-A-Likes 


9: Text Adventures II 

10: Text Adventures III 

11: Surf’s Up 

12: Ski King 

13:20 BASIC Games 

14: Super Quiz A & B 

15: Two Graphic Adventure Games 

16: Space Lords 

17: Pinball Games 

18: Machine Language Games 

19: Dandy Dungeon 

Language 

1: Fig-FORTH 
2: ACTION! source codes 
(cf. GAMES 7) 

3: ACTION! Graphic Demos 
4: ACTION! Utility Programs 
5: ACTION! Modules #1 
6: ACTION! Modules #2 
7: BASIC XL-REF Base 
8: ACTION! Modules #3 
9: KERMIT telecom 
10: TURBO BASIC 
11: Pascal Sampler 
12: Searcher XL Turbo 
13: Turbo Basic for 400/800 
14: C Language 

Music 

1: TV/MOVIE Themes 
2: ROCK 
3: JAZZ 

4: BASIC with animation 
5: Arns Player: 12 Rock Songs 
6: Ams Player: 14 Movie/Video 
Themes 

7: Ams Player: 16 Oldies 
8: Ams Player: 18 Classics 
9: Ram130 AMS Beetles’ Songs 
10: MUSIC COMPOSER Songs 
11 Pokey Player 
12: M usic Major 

Utiiiity 

1: MISCELLANEOUS introduction 
2: Printers 
3: DOS 2.5 

4: Directory & Label Printer 
5: Graphics Trilogy 


6: Copymate XE 
7: SCOPY sector copier 
8: Translator Disk 
9:256K Upgrade 
10: Daisy-Dot NLQ 
11: Dos 2.6 
12: MACHDOS2.1 
13: Print Shop Editor 
14: Easy Find 
15: Print Shop Icons 
16: TEXTPRO 1.1 
17: Print Shop Icons 
18: Touch Edit 
19: DOS 4.0 
20: Graphics 

21:130XE upgrades + Utilities 
22: HI-RES130 (graphics) 

23: Rainbow DOS 
24: Font Master 
25:3-D CAD 

26: Adelaide Symbolic Disassem¬ 
bler 

27: DB’s & Spreadsheet 
28: Graphic Utilities & Pics 
29: String Magic 
30: Print Shop Icons 
31: Hacker’s Toolkit 
32: Weekly Scheduler 
33: Textpro 2.5r (telecom) 

34: Print Shop Utility 
35: Monitor/Debugger 
36: Diet & Nutrition 
37: General Ledger 
38: Super Copiers 
39: Atari Writer Drivers 

Telecommunications 

1:850 Interface 
2:835/1030 Modem 
3: MPP Modem 
4A: AMODEM 7.2 
5A&B Chameleon Terminal Emu¬ 
lator 

6:1030&850 Express (3.0 & 2.1) 

7: Data Comm 
8: AMIS XM10 BBS program 
9: AMODEM 7.4 + Rverter 
10: Forem XE 


June 1988 


CURRENT NOTES 


Page 71 













NOVATARI 

Northern VA Atari Users’ Group 

President.G.Weatherhead.703-938-4829 

VP-ST.. Ian Charters. 703-845-7578 

VP-8BIT.Alan Friedman.703-425-0575 

Treasurer.Curt Sandler.703-734-9533 

Secretary.Edmund Bedsworth .703-536-5958 

Membership. Earl Lilley.703-281-9017 

Prg. Chr. XL/XE . Randy Ingalsbe.703-644-0159 

.NinaKraucunas.703-250-3572 

Prg. Chr. ST.Jim Stevenson 

.Duane Shie.703-430-9693 

Telecom SIG.Ed Seward.703-573-3044 

MS-DOS SIG... Mike Gibbons.703-440-0379 

KID SIG.Ted Rabenko.703-437-5221 

Sysop-Armudic Ted Bell.703-455-5312 

Sysop-WAACE Ed Seward.703-573-3044 

LIBRARY-8-BIT Roy Brooks.703-750-0146 

MAIL.Al Friedman.703-425-0575 

LIBRARY-ST.... Bob Bell.301-593-0889 

.Glen Bernstein.703-455-6053 

HOTLINE.Andrea Bonham. 703-534-3503 


Atarifest ’88.Gary Purinton.703-476-8391 


ARMUDIC. 

.2400B. 

. 703-573-9219 

BBS. 

.2400B. 

. 703-573-9216 


.300/1200B. 

. 703-573-9208 


.300/1200B. 

. 703-573-9207 


New Members: Dues are $20/year/family which 
includes a subscription to CURRENT NOTES and 
access to more activities. Join at the main meeting or at 
a chapter meeting or by sending $20, payable to 
NOVATARI, to Earl Lilley, 821 Ninovan Rd.SE, Vienna, 
VA22180. 

Novatari Main meeting meets the second 
Sunday of the month at the Washington Gas Light 
Building, 6801 Industrial RD, Springfield, VA. Take 495 
to east on Braddock Rd. (620) to south on Backlick 
Rd.(617). Left on Industrial Rd. Washington GasLight is 
the second building on the right. 5:30 Telecom SIG; 
6:15 announcements, open forum, door prizes; 6:45 
VAST and 8BIT SIG meetings. M.Vernon/Hybla 
Valley, 1st Thursday, 7:30 Contact Ron Peters at 
780-0963. Sterling, Sterling Library, 7:30-9:30, 1st 
Wed. Contact Milo Flagel at 471-5273. 

BBS: Access to the BBS’ requires a fee in addition 
to the dues. This fee is $5/year for NOVATARI members 
and $7.50 for members of other WAACE clubs, $10 for 
other nonWAACE users. BBS access fees are to be 
made payable to “NOVATARI” and sent to: Ed Seward, 
PO Box 541, Vienna, VA 22180. 


President’s Report 

ARMUDIC contest winner will be announced at 
June 12th meeting. 2400 baud modem will be 
awarded. 


New names have been added to the "Hot List" 
since it was published in the April issue. Ken says he 
has had calls from as far away as Texas and California 
from the April listing. When California Atarians call east 
coast instead of Atari west coast UGs, we wonder. 

Congratulations to the new Atari Computer Divi¬ 
sion’s newsletter Atari User Group News. It will come 
monthly to the representative of each User Group to 
help us keep abreast of the UG news, new develop¬ 
ments, and technical information. (Look for my 
condensations on ARMUDIC.) From reading the first 
issue by editor Elizabeth Shook it is not clear whether 
8-bit is to be included in the Atari Computer division or 
whether it has been downgraded to the Atari Games 
Division. Let it be known that NOVATARI’s 8-bitters are 
serious computer users, and should be included. I 
spoke to Elizabeth and she is investigating. 


A.U.R.A. 


Atari Users Regional Association 


President. 

.. Steven Rudolph. 

301-464-0835 

8-bit VP. 

.. BobLangsdale. 

301-390-6554 

16-bit VP. 

... James Bonbright.Jr.. 

301-933-4891 

Treasurer. 

.. Bob Brock. 

301-268-2554 

Membership... 

.. Dave van Allen. 

301-593-4654 

8-bit Libr. 

...Wayne Heiden. 

301-330-0130 

16-bit Libr. 

.. Herb Lane. 

202-332-3618 

Equipment. 

.. Jesse Ayer. 

.301-345-1592 

Facilities. 

.. Richard Stoll. 

301-946-8435 

Used Equip.... 

.. Lincoln Hallen. 

.301-460-5060 


* AURA Has New Meeting Place * 

Meetings - Beginning June 16th, we will be 
meeting in the Multipurpose room at the GRACE 
EPISCOPAL SCHOOL in Kensington Maryland. Grace 
Episcopal School is located on Connecticut Avenue, 
1/4 mile north of the Connecticut Avenue (North) exit, 
on the east side of the street. We will continue to meet 
on the third Thursday of the month. Library sales begin 
at 7:00, the meeting begins at 7:30. We will continue 
having separate XL and ST demonstrations. DOOR!!!! 

Correspondence. All correspondence, including 
membership renewals, changes of address, etc. 
should be sent to: AURA, P. O. Box 7761, Silver Spring, 
MD 20910. AURA cannot guarantee CURRENTNOTES 
subscription fulfillment unless the member provides 
written confirmation of address changes, renewals, etc. 
to the address given above. 

New Members. Dues are $20/year and include 
subscription to CURRENT NOTES. Send name, 
address, phone number, and check to above address. 

April Meeting. The meeting theme was graphics 
output. Bob Brock and Line Hallen demonstrated 
some of the XLent line of software products producing 
enhanced text and pictures. Steve Rudolph demon¬ 
strated a color inkjet printer with DEGAS and Maps & 
Legends showing that hi-rez, vibrant color, the major 
feature of the ST, is useful for more than games. Both 
demonstrations were wellattended and ran over the 


Page 72 


CURRENT NOTES 


June 1988 








































































scheduled time. 

All attendees were given questionnaires to com¬ 
plete. These forms will give the officers the information 
on the members equipment, uses and interests; 
valuable information to be used for planning future 
meetings. We will have copies at the next couple of 
meetings for those who missed the April meeting. 

Herb Lane (16-bit Librarian) has made good 
progress in developing a database for our PD library. 
This will make it much easier to close in on those disks 
that contain the desired files. 

Door prizes were given and again were well- 
received. This month we gave out a videotape, joystick 
adapters, and diskettes. Do to popular demand, we’ll 
continue door prizes for awhile. 


N.C.A.U.G. 

National Capital Atari Users’ Group 

President.Peter Kilcullen.202-296-5700 

Vice President.. Mike Poliak.703-768-7669 

Treasurer.Allen H. Lerman.301-460-0289 

XL/XE Librarian Mike Poliak. 703-768-7669 

ST Librarian.Enrique Seale.202-295-0112 

Meetings: 3rd Tuesday, 5:30 - 8:30 pm, room 
543, National Science Foundation offices, 1800 G St., 
NW, Washington, DC. Closest subway stop is Farragut 
West on the Blue and Orange lines. Building is 
identified by sign for Madison National Bank on the 
corner. Front entrance is on west side of 18th between 
F and G. 

New Members: Membership dues are $20 and 
include a subscription to CURRENT NOTES. Join at the 
meeting or send check, payable to NCAUG, to Allen 
Lerman, 14905 Waterway Dr, Rockville, MD 20853. 

W.A.C.U.G. 

Woodbridge Atari Computer Users’ Group 

President. LouPraino.703-221-8193 

First VP.ArnieTurk.703-670-2547 

16Bit VP. Darrell Stiles.703-494-9819 

8-Bit Board Rep Stan Rupert. 703-670-3338 

ST VP. Bill Parker..703-680-3941 

ST Board Rep... Bill Brooks.703-895-5404 

Treasurer.Chris Moore.703-670-5143 

Secretary.Frank Bassett. 703-670-8780 

Librarian.Mike Stringer.703-791-3331 

Past President.. Jack Holtzhauer.703-670-6475 

Meetings: 7-10PM, Community Room, Potomac 
Branch, Prince William County Library, Opitz Blvd., 
Woodbridge, VA. Entering Woodbridge from either 
North or South on Route 1, proceed to the intersection 
of Route 1 and Opitz Blvd. (opposite Woodbridge 
Lincoln-Mercury). Turn West on Opitz and take first left 
turn into the library’s parking lot. The Community Room 
is located to your left immediately upon entering the 
main building. Meeting Dates: Feb. 9, Mar. 8, Apr. 19, 
May 10, June 13. 


New Members: Initial membership fee is $10/yr 
plus $1 monthly dues. Membership includes a sub¬ 
scription to CURRENTNOTES. Join at meeting or send 
check, payable to WACUG, to Frank W. Bassett, 15313 
Blacksmith Terr, Woodbridge, VA 22191. 


S.M.A.U.G. 

So. Maryland Atari Users’ Group 

President.Terry Daniels.301-292-7594 

Secretary. Fred Brown.301-645-4009 

Treasurer.Samuel Schrinar.301-843-7916 

Newsletter Ed ... Leroy Olson.301-743-2200 

Librarian.Sherwood Conner.... 301-292-5752 

Meetings: 2nd Thursday, 7:30 pm, John Hanson 
Middle School in Waldorf, MD. Traveling thru Waldorf 
either east or west on Rt 5, exit on Vivian Adams 
located 200 ft west of Waldorf Carpets & Draperies and 
directly across from the Village Square sign. 

New Members: Membership dues are $20 and 
include a subscription to CURRENT NOTES. Join at the 
meeting or send check, payable to SMAUG, to Sam 
Schrinar, 2032 Alehouse Court, Waldorf, MD 20601. 


F.A.C.E. 

Frederick Atari Comp Enthusiasts 

President.Chris Rietman.301-663-0325 

Vice President.. Mike Kerwin.301 -845-4477 

Treasurer. Buddy Smallwood.... 717-485-4714 

Librarian.Jason Harmon.301 -663-1176 

Secretary.Wilson Small.301-845-2370 

Bulletin Board.301-865-5569 

Meetings: 4th Tuesday, 7 - 9:30 pm, Walkersville 
High School, MD Route 194, one mile north of MD 
Route 26 (Liberty Road). 

New Members: Dues are $25/year/family and 
include a subscription to CURRENT NOTES. Join at 
meeting or send check, payable to FACE, to Buddy 
Smallwood, PO Box 2026, Frederick, MD 21701. 


M.A.C.C. 

Maryland Atari Computer Club 

President.Jim Hill.301-461-7556 

Vice-President DanHonick.301-356-6453 

Treasurer.John Cromwell.301-356-6453 

Secretary.Bob Brent.301 -254-3896 

8-bit Librarian.. Cam Whetstone.301 -486-2609 

ST Librarian.CVharles Smeton.(none) 

Newsletter EditorTim Caldwell.301-687-1413 

Meetings are held on the last Tuesday of every 
month at 6:30 pm at the Pikesville Library located 1 mile 
east on Reisterstown Rd, Exit 20 off the Baltimore 
beltway. Turn left into parking lot atthe fifth traffic light. 

New Members. Club dues are $22 per year, and 
include a subscription to Current Notes. Join at the 
meeting or mail check, payable to M.A.C.C., to James 
Hill, 8591 Wheatfield Way, Ellicott City, MD 21043. 


June 1988 


CURRENT NOTES 


Page 73 






























































Time to RENEW??? 

If your label shows 8806, this June 
issue is your last. Renew Now!!! 


CLASSIFIED ADS 

Classified ads are free to subscribers 
of CURRENT NOTES ($0.10/wordfor 
others). Send your ad to CN CLAS- 
S/F/ED, 122 N Johnson Rd., Sterl¬ 
ing, VA22170. 

FOR SALE: GFA BASIC (Interpre¬ 
ter) for the ST; Swiftcalc (Timeworks) 
for the ST; Tandy CM5 Color Monitor 
(TTL RGB). Best offer for each or all 
three. Call Robert Vider at 301- 
464-2778 (evenings and weekends) 
or 202-371-1211 (work-days). 

ATARI 520ST for sale, with color 
monitor, 1 disk drive, Star SG-10 
printer and a lot of software, includ¬ 
ing Publishing Partner, Thunder, and 
more, $700. Also, an Amdek Color 1 
composite monitor, best reasonable 
offer. Call 301-949-7356. 


CURRENT NOTES REGISTERED CLUBS 


LIST OF ADVERTISERS 

Classified Ads.. 74 

A&D Software 503/476-0071.... 41 

A&M Entrpr 800/342-4514. 59 

AccuSoft. 25 

ACA 301/948-0256. 7 

Avant-Garde 904/221 -2904. 2 

Cal Com Inc. 301/933-3074. 19 

Comp Success 401/751-0038.. 67 

Current Notes ST Library. 68 

D&P 216/926-3842 . 63 

Diskcovery 703/536-5040 . 3 

Electronic Clinic 301/656-7983 14 

The Faster Disk. 44 

Hi-Tech Advisers.813/294-1885 51 

Index Legalis Publishing. 45 

Irata Verlag 303/596-0135 . 67 

Joppa 301/679-5517 . 51 

L&Y 703/643-1729. 75 

Mars 312/530-0988. 67 

Migraph 800/223-3729 . 57 

Novatari XL/XE Library. 71 

One Stop 217/337-7867 . 43 

Patnor 915/598-1048 . 55 

Proco Products 401/568-8459. 27 

Sideline 800/888/9273. 23 

Solar Powered 602/899-6992... 11 

ST Informer. 15 

Toad 301/544-6943. 62 

WordPerfect 801/225-5000. 76 


Members of registered clubs can 
subscribe to CN at the discount rate 
($17/year). To add your club to the 
list, send in an initial subscription list 
of 10% of the membership or 6 
members whichever is less. For 
more info, contact Joe Waters, 122 
N. Johnson Rd., Sterling, VA 22170. 
Note: ACE=Atari Computer Enthu¬ 
siasts and AUG=Atari User Group. 

ALABAMA: Huntsville AUG, 3911 W. 
Crestview, Huntsville 35816 205-534-1815. 
ARKANSAS: Little Rock Atari Addicts, 28 

John Hancock Cir, Jacksonville 72076 501- 
985-2131. 

CALIFORNIA: Atari Bay Area Computer 
Users Society, PO Box 22212, San Fran¬ 
cisco 94122 415-753-8483. Long Beach 
ACE, 1667 E. Plymouth St, Long Beach 90805 
213-423-2758. San Diego ACE, PO Box 
203076, San Diego 92120 619-224-8975. 
Santa Maria/Lompac ACE, 608 N. Pierce, 
Santa Maria 93454 805-925-9390. 
CONNECTICUT: AUG of Greater Hart¬ 
ford, 503-B East Center St, Manchester 
06040. 

FLORIDA: Atari Boosters League East, 

P.O. Box 1172, Winter Park 32790. 

ILLINOIS: Central Illinois Atari Users 
Group, 1920 East Croxton Ave, Bloomington 
61701-5702 309-828-4661. Lake County 
ACE, PO Box 8788, Waukegan 60079 312- 
623-9567. 

INDIANA: Atari Lovers of Uliana Equaled 

by None, PO Box 2953, Gary 46403 219- 
663-5117. LCC/ST, Karl Werner, Eli Lilly Corp 
Cntr, Indianapolis 46285 317-276-3020. 

IOWA: Midwest Atari Group-lowa 
Chapter, PO Box 1982, Ames IA 50010 
515-232-1252. 

KANSAS: Ft. Leavenworth Atari Group, 

PO Box 3233, Ft Leavenworth 66027 913- 
651-5631. Wichita ACE, 1722 N. Murray, 
Wichita 67212316-722-1078. 

KENTUCKY: Atari Exchange of Louis¬ 
ville, PO BOX 34183, Louisville 40232. 
MARYLAND: Nameless AUG, 3475 
Manassas Ct, Davidsonville 21035 301-798- 
0566. 


MASSACHUSETTS: Acton-Boxborough 
Atari Computer Users Society, PO Box 
1523, Westford 01886 617-937-8046. 
MICHIGAN: Michigan Atari General In¬ 
formation Conference, 28111 Imperial Dr, 
BOX M, Warren 48093-4281 313-978-8432. 
MISSOURI: ACE St Louis, PO Box 6783, St. 
Louis, MO 63144. Warrensburg/Whiteman 
Atari Computer Owners, PO Box 199, 
Warrensburg 64093 816-747-2543. 

NEW YORK: Atari Computer Owners of 
Rochester NY, PO Box 23676, Rochester 
14692 716-334-5820. Rockland Atari Com¬ 
puter Users Group, 29 Riverglen Dr., Thiells, 
NY 10984 914-429-5283. 

N. CAROLINA: Charlotte AUG, PO Box 
240313, Charlotte 28224 704-366-4320. Peid- 
mont Triad AUG, Rt. 9, Box 2740, Reidsville 
27320. Triangle Computer Club, Rt. 3, Box 
760, Hillsborough 27278 919-942-2764. 

OHIO: Cleveland ACE, 5482 Beacon Hill Ct, 
Seven Hills 44131 216-749-4853. 
PENNSYLVANIA: Allentown Bethlehem 
Easton’s ACE, PO Box 2830, Lehigh Valley 
18001 BBS 215-759-2683. Spectrum Atari 
Group of Erie, PO Box 10562, Erie 16514 
814-833-4073. Southcentral PA ACE, PO 
Box 11446, Harrisburg 17108-1446 717-761- 
3755. 

TENNESSEE: Knoxville AUG, 953 
Roderick Rd, Knoxville 37923 615-693-4542. 
TEXAS: DACE, Rachel Duke, 5902 Preston 
oaks Rd, #1005, Dallas 75240 214-3656-4320. 
Dallas ACE, 5902 Preston Oaks Rd, #1005, 
Dallas 75240 214-404-8569. ST Atari 
League of San Antonio, 3203 Coral Grove 
Dr, San Antonio 78247 512-496-5635. 
VIRGINIA: Greater Richmond Atari Sup¬ 
port Program, 1420 Yale Ave, Richmond 
23224 804-233-6155. Southside Tidewater 
Atari Tech Users Society, 5245 Shenstone 
Circle, VA Beach 23455 804-464-2100. 
WASHINGTON: Seattle Puget Sound 
ACE, PO Box 110576, Tacoma 98411-0576. 
WISCONSIN: Packerland Atari Com¬ 
puter Users Society, 339 S. Maple St, 
Kimberly 54136 414-788-1058. 


DeskJet Pages in this issue: 8,9,10,28,30 


Current Notes Subscription Rates 

Current Notes annual subscription rate is $20 ($36 for 2 
years). Foreign subscriptions are $35/year for SURFACE mail. 
AIR MAIL rates: Canada/Mexico, $37; Cent. America, Carib¬ 
bean, $47; S. America, Europe, N. Africa, $57; Middle East, 
Africa, Asia, Australia, $67. All foreign subscriptions are 
payable in US dollars drawn on a US bank. 

Send check, payable to Current Notes, to CN Subscriptions, 
122 N. Johnson Rd., Sterling, VA 22170. 


Page 74 


CURRENT NOTES 


June 1988 









































ATARI 8-BIT 

HARDWARE 

130XE. CALL 

65XE. CALL 

XF551. CALL 

XM301 MODEM. 49.99 

U.S. DOUBLER. 29.99 

HAPPY DRIVE FOR 1050. 129.99 

NEWELL 256K UPGRADE. 94.99 

INSTALLED. 115.99 

RAMBO XL 256K UPGRADE. 39.99 

P.R. CONNECTION. 59.99 

PRINTER OR MODEM CABLE. 12.99 

XETEC PRINTER INTERFACE. 39.99 

XEP 80 80COLUMN FOR800X& 130XE.. 72.99 

ATARI STANDARD JOYSTICKS. 7.99 

LANGUAGES 

LIGHT SPEED C 

NEW & EXCITING. 34.99 

OSS ACTION. 49.99 

OSS BASIC XL. 49.99 

OSS BASIC XE. 49.99 

OSS MAC 65. 49.99 

WORDPROCESSORS 

XLENT’S HOT PRODUCT 

FIRST WORDPROCESSOR. 24.99 

ATARIWRITER(CART). 29.99 

ATARIWRITER PLUS. 39.99 

PAPERCLIP. 39.99 

BUSINESS APPLICATION 

SYNCALC. 32.99 

SYNFILE. 32.99 

B-GRAPH. 29.99 

SILENT BUTLER. 19.99 

LONG AWAITED NEWS ROOM. 39.99 

TEACHER’S GRADEBOOK. 34.99 

GAMES 

GAUNTLET. 27.99 

GAUNTLET DEEPR DUNGEON. 19.99 

ONE-ON-ONE(CART). 19.99 


ATARI ST 

HARDWARE 

520 ST WITH MONOCHROME 

WIT H COLOR MONITOR CALL 

1040 ST WITH MONOCHROME FOR 

WITH COLOR MONITOR PRICES 

RAM UPGRADE (INSTALLED) 

CALL FOR MEMORY SIZE NEEDED 

SUPRA harddisk 20 MBYTE.549.99 

30 MBYPTE.... CALL 
60 MBYTE.CALL 

ST CABLE RS232C OR CENTRONIC. each9.99 

MAGIC SAC PLUS. 129.99 

MAGIC SAC ROMS. 39.99 

ATARI SF314 DOUBLE-SIDED. 209.99 

FUTURE GTS-100. 219.99 

COMPUTER EYES VIDEO DIGITIZER... 169.99 

LANGUAGES 

GFA BASIC SUPPORTS GEM WELL. 49.99 

GFA BASIC COMPILER. 49.99 

MEGAMAX C. 159.99 

MARK WILLIAMS C. 129.99 

AC FORTRAN. 129.99 

ASSEM-PRO. 44.99 

WORDPROCESSORS 

WORD WRITER TIME WORKS. 49.99 

WORD PERFECT. 199.99 

FIRST WORD PLUS. 89.99 

MICROSOFT WRITE. 99.99 

PUBLISHING PARTNER. 69.99 

PUBLISHING ST. 89.99 

DATABASES 

DATA MANAGER TIME WORKS. 49.99 

SUPER BASE. 89.99 

DBMAN 4.0. 189.99 



WE FIX ATARI COMPUTERS 


SPECIAL OF THE MONTH 

ATARI STARTER LAB & LIGHT MODULE FOR $29.99 
REGENT WORD II FOR $19.99 


L&Y ELECTRONICS INC. 

(703) 494-3444 13644C JEFFERSON DAVIS HWY. 

METRO 643-1729 WOODBRIDGE, VIRGINIA 22191 

PRICES ARE SUBJECT TO CHANGE 

IN STOCK ONLY-SALE ENDS JULY 15,1988 


ATARI SERVICE 
AUTHORIZED SINCE 1982 

NO CREDIT CARD SURCHARGE 

ACCEPTED MASTER 
CHARGE, VISA, CHOICE 


June 1988 


CURRENT NOTES 


Page 75 
































































If you’re looking for software that takes full advantage of your 
Atari’s capabilities while providing an extensive range of features, 
look no further. 

WordPerfect offers the power you need with features like Col¬ 
umns, Indexing, Merge, Macros, Speller, andThesaurus. You’ll 
find them useful for everything from simple memos to complex 
reports. All features are easily accessed using the Atari mouse 
and pull-down menus, or WordPerfect’s standard keystrokes. 

WordPerfect’s GEM-based design taps the Atari’s resources with 
ready access to desktop accessories, full color adjustment for 
color monitors, a definable mouse pointer and cursor, and the 
ability to move and size up to four windows. And WordPerfect 
is written in assembly language to take full advantage of the 
Atari’s speed. 


WordPerfect Corporation offers Atari users the stability of a 
proven product, produced by a reliable leader in software man¬ 
ufacturing. With full documentation, toll-free customer support, 
and free software upgrades, your investment will be profitable 
for years to come. 

Expand your options with WordPerfect - the most powerful word 
processor you can buy for the Atari ST. For a demonstration, 
contact your local dealer. 

WordPerfect 

CORPORATION 

1555 N. Technology Way • Orem, UT 84057 

Tel: (801) 225-5000 • Telex: 820618 • FA£: (801) 227-4288 

WordPerfect is a registered trademark of WordPerfect Corporation. All other products and brand 
names are registered trademarks or trademarks of their respective companies.