_      ____       ___   ______       _______          _
              d#      ####b     g#00   `N##0"    _agN#0P0N#         d#
             d##       jN##    j##F     J##    _dN0"      "        d##
           .#]##      _P ##L  jN##F     ###   g#0"               .#]##
          dE_j##      #  0## jF ##F    j##F  j##'    ______     dE_j##
        .0"""N##     d"   ##L0  ##F    0##   0##     "9##F"   .0"""5##
      .dF'   ]##    jF    ##0   ##F    ##F   `##k     d##   .dF'   j##
    .g#_    _j##___g#__   ]N  _j##L_ _d##L_   `#Nh___g#N' .g#_    _j##__
   """""    """""""""""    "  """""" """"""      """"""" """""    """"""


April 30, 1993                                                     No. 1.07
===========================================================================
                Amiga Report International Online Magazine 
===========================================================================

            "The Original Online Magazine" from STR Publishing

                        [S]ilicon [T]imes [R]eport


                 -----------------------------------------
                               * NOVA BBS *
                         Amiga Report Headquarters
                          * RUNNING STARNET BBS *
                            FidoNet  1:362/508
                 An Amiga Software Distribution Site (ADS)
                615-472-9748  Supra V.32bis  24hrs - 7 days

              Amiga Report can be FREQ'd from Nova each week.
                    The filename will ALWAYS be AR.LHA.
 
                 -----------------------------------------
                            * THE BOUNTY BBS *
                         Home of  STR Publications
                        * RUNNING  TURBOBOARD BBS *
                 904-786-4176  USR DS 16.8  24hrs - 7 days
                 -----------------------------------------
                
___________________________________________________________________________


> 04/30/93 STR-Amiga 1.07  "The Original * Independent * Online Magazine!"
  =======================
    - The Editor's Desk     - CPU Report         - New Products
    - Rendered Reality      - STR Online         - Toaster 4000 RTC
    - Dealer Directory      - Chaos Engine       - Cordless Mouse
    - Macro68 Assembler     - RawCopy v1.3       - Might and Magic III
                            - Pinball Fantasies  

                   -* Fusion Forth A2000 Accelerator *-
               -* Urgent News from Safe Hex International *-
                            
===========================================================================
                Amiga Report International Online Magazine
                           From STR Publications
                        [S]ilicon [T]imes [R]eport
               The Original * Independent * Online Magazine
                          -* FEATURING WEEKLY *-
                "Accurate UP-TO-DATE News and Information"
     Current Events, Original Articles, Tips, Rumors, and Information
             Hardware ~ Software ~ Corporate ~ R & D ~ Imports
===========================================================================
           GENIE ~ DELPHI ~ NVN ~ BIX ~ PORTAL ~ FIDO ~ INTERNET
===========================================================================


                    :HOW TO GET YOUR OWN GENIE ACCOUNT:
                     _________________________________

      Set your communications software to Half Duplex (or Local Echo)
                     Call: (with modem) 800-638-8369.
               Upon connection type HHH (RETURN after that).
                         Wait for the U#= prompt.
                 Type: XTX99587,CPUREPT then, hit RETURN.


 GEnie costs only $4.95 a month for unlimited evening and weekend access to
 more  than  100  services  including electronic mail, online encyclopedia,
 shopping, news, entertainment, single-player  games,  and  bulletin boards
 on leisure and professional subjects.  With many other services, including
 the biggest collection of files to download and the best online games, for
 only $6 per hour.

 MONEY BACK  GUARANTEE!   Any time during your first month of membership if
 you are not completely satisfied, just ask for your $4.95 back.


         GEnie Information copyright (C) 1991 by General Electric
           Information Services/GEnie, reprinted with permission


***************************************************************************


> From the Editor's Desk                       "Saying it like it is!"
  ======================


What a week this has been!  Hectic, hectic, hectic.  Spring cleaning, yard
mowing, car washing and the like.  Doesn't leave a lot of time for
computing, huh?  This has been a slow week in terms of Amiga happenings.
Our CPU Report area is pretty bare of Amiga-related information.  There are
some neat new files, like Amiga Boulder Dash.  Cool game.  Faithful to the
original, yet utilizes the Amiga's graphics to the fullest.  Check it out.
It's well worth the download time.

Meanwhile, our Technical Editor, Micah Thompson, has taken off for a week
or so in California.  Vacation... what a concept!

But, Mike Troxell is back, having finished school at Chattanooga State.
He's anxious to get going again, so I hope you'll enjoy this week's
Rendered Reality.

Some more people have expressed interest in seeing Amiga Report take on
AmigaGuide format.  It's a neat idea, and we may just do it.  But right
now is not the time.  Commodore released AmigaGuide to the public not that
long ago, so not many people have it yet.  Maybe in a few months, when
the AmigaGuide userbase has grown enough, we can make a switch.  Putting
out ONE magazine is hard enough, let alone making TWO.  That means we stay
ASCII, or we go AmigaGuide.  Not both.  Any thoughts?

Lastly, a few weeks ago, several people contacted me via Netmail with some
ideas for the magazine.  They gave phone numbers to contact them.  I
called and left messages, but never got a return call.  Please, if anyone
has ideas, be sure to include an Email address where you can be contacted.
I cannot send Netmail just yet, so please try to supply another address.
Thanks!

                            Rob @ Amiga Report



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Amiga Report's Staff                         DEDICATED TO SERVING YOU!
====================


                                     Editor
                                     ======
                                  Robert Glover


          Technical Editor       Graphics Editor        Contributing Editor
          ================       ===============        ===================
           Micah Thompson         Mike Troxell              Tom Mulcahy
 GEnie:       BOOMER.T             M.TROXELL1
 FidoNet:                          1:362/508.5              1:260/322
 Delphi:                                                    16BITTER
 Bix:                                                       HELMET


                        Contributing Correspondents
                        ===========================
               Gary Bradley                     Christopher Davis
               John Deegan                      Dimitri Tom Dussias
               David Gilbert                    Rob Morton
                              


        PC DIVISION           ATARI DIVISION           MAC DIVISION
        ===========           ==============           ============
        Roger D. Stevens      Ralph F. Mariano         R. Albritton


                             IMPORTANT NOTICE
                             ================
      Please, submit letters to the editor, articles, reviews, etc...
                              via E-Mail to:

                   Delphi........................ ROB_G
                   GEnie......................... ROB-G
                   Internet.......................ROB_G@Delphi.COM
   

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> CPU STATUS REPORT                 LATE BREAKING INDUSTRY-WIDE NEWS
  =================



                  URGENT NEWS FROM SAFE HEX INTERNATIONAL


From: Jim Maciorowski & Michael Arends
  To: All
Subj: DANGER!  READ THIS!!

If you use the virus checkers VIRUSZ or BOOTX, please read this: 
 
Word has gotten to us that the authors of VIRUSZ (Georg Hoermann) and
BootX (Peter Stuer) will be giving up their work.  Why? Reportedly,lack
of financial support. After all, BootX was freeware, and from "speaking"
with Georg Hoermann, he was actually LOSING money on VirusZ for a while. 
 
These authors DO get money from SAFE HEX INTERNATIONAL, but with disk
sales as poor as they have been lately, they may not be getting enough! 
 
           **  NOW'S YOUR CHANCE TO SAVE THESE PROGRAMS! **
 
If you use BootX, write to the author and let him know that you want
this program to stay alive!  Maybe even ask him to re-start support
for the KickStart 1.3 version!  Or maybe just even send him some money,
because you use the program and would like to see it continued! Here's
the address: 
 
                             Peter Stuer      (BootX)
                             Kauwlei 21 
                             B-2550 Kontich 
                             Belgium - EUROPE 
 
And if you use VirusZ, let the author know that you support his work as
well! He was one of the first (if not THE first) to come out with the
"universal" DECRUNCH.LIBRARY to check crunched files, files compressed
with LhA, DMS, and so on...DON'T LET VIRUSZ GO TO WASTE!  Here's the
address: 
                                Georg Hoermann    (VirusZ)
                            Am Lahnewiesgraben 19 
                         8100 Garmisch-Partenkirchen 
                                   GERMANY 
 
PLEASE write to them!  These programs are VERY POWERFUL, and they have
made their mark in the Amiga anti-virus scene!  DO IT TODAY! 
 
If you don't want to shell out 50 cents for an overseas postage stamp,
you can send the letter to the United States Regional Virus Centers, &
 we will forward the letters to the authors, since we indirectly deal
with them. Here are OUR Addresses: 
 
Jim Maciorowski                                Michael Arends 
SHI/USA East Coast                             SHI/USA West Coast 
PO Box 724                                     PO Box 1531 
Port Richey, FL  34673-0724                    Lynnwood, WA  98046-1531 


            __________________________________________________




                   Computer Products Update - CPU Report
                   ------------------------   ----------
                  Weekly Happenings in the Computer World
 
                                 Issue #17
 
                              By: John Deegan
 


                         AMERICA ONLINE CUTS RATES

     Effective May first, subscribers will pay $9.95 to access all of AOL's
on-line services for up to five hours per month.  AOL says the rate cuts,
associated with a previously announced price increase by Prodigy makes it
capable of becoming the nation's leading on-line service.  Under the new
schedules, the monthly fee is cut by more than half.  AOL is also offering
Prodigy users a free trial, available by calling AOL's toll free number. 
The Package includes free America Online software and 10 hours of free
on-line time.

                        ALDUS MAKES GRANTS AVAILABLE

In what can only be seen as a move that'll bring a inundation of updates,
additions and upgrades for Aldus Pagemaker software, its been announced a
well funded grant program where developers are eligible for a portion of
$150,000 in grant money set aside to encourage additions development.

Aldus stated the program is designed to emphasize Additions that are aimed
at the advertising and workgroup publishing markets, especially magazine
and newspaper publishers.  Aldus publishes Pagemaker, a high-end DTP
solution suitable for preparing camera-ready professional level
publications.  Aldus says the average grant for an Addition ranges from
$30,000 to
$50,000.

                      COREL SHIPS SCSI, RAID SOFTWARE

Corel has launched two new software products.  The first is an extended
version of its CorelSCSI software to drive SCSI (Small Computer Systems
Interface) peripherals.  The second is software for redundant arrays of
inexpensive disks (RAID) storage systems.  Both packages were unveiled
during the (AIIM) show and conference in Chicago.  Corel said the new
CorelSCSI Pro software far exceeds the benefits of the existing package.
Features included are; extended support for compact disk read-only memory
(CD-ROM) drives, including being able to run them on Novell NetWare file
servers and to write data to write capable CD-ROM drives.  Additional
support for scanners and the Sytos tape format has been added too. Device
drivers now automatically determine which devices are attached and
reconfigure themselves accordingly.  Also, there's a new backup program.


                 Apple Develops Macintosh-like GUI For PCs!

A recent report in the San Francisco Chronicle states the company has been
using the software on Intel 486-based PCs for several months.  The product
could possibly represent a threat to Microsoft's Windows GUI (graphical
user interface).  Windows made the PC interface a pleasure when version
3.0, and subsequently 3.1, was introduced.  The Windows products make the
PC easier to use by offering a screen filed with icons - images that
represent computer applications - and easily understood pull-down menus.

The Mac interface is generally considered easier to use than Windows, it
offers folders for files and file management, instead of the CLI type line
eight-character file names and sub-directories.  Further, according to the
report, Apple' execs are reportedly considering when it would be most
advantageous to release the new, highly competitive GUI product.

                  Mayo Clinic Family Health Book On CD-ROM

Interactive Ventures Inc. has announced the "Mayo Clinic Family Health
Book".  Its on a CD-ROM disk designed to run on the Mac platform.  The
program was originally released on CD-ROM for Windows last November.
Additionally, Interactive Ventures, joined with Sony Electronic Publishing
to produce and distribute the CD-ROM disk. 



      _______________________________________________________________




AMIGA BOULDER DASH AVAILABLE FOR FTP


TITLE
        Amiga Boulder Dash 

VERSION
        1.1909, a replacement for distribution V1.1809

AUTHOR

        Jeff Bevis 
        bevis@ecn.purdue.edu

DESCRIPTION

        This is the second release of the game which is a clone of
        the popular C64 program.  Amiga Boulder Dash is a multi-
        level single-player game in which the objective is to 
        hunt through a maze of walls, rocks and dirt to collect
        diamonds.  Includes lots of goodies to make the task
        more interesting than a trip to the garden.  Also featured
        in the program is the cave-editor which allows the player
        to create his/her own game screens.

NEW FEATURES

        - OS-friendly
        - Works will all processors (68000-68040)
        - Tested to work in A2000, A3000, A4000
        - Improved graphics, sound
        - Nearly 60 unique levels
        - Fully function cave editor (with gadtools interface)
        - Much more

CHANGES
        The version uploaded to amiga.physik as V1.1809 was incorrectly
        named;  it was actually version 1.1908.  In addition, at least
        one file was missing, rendering the program unusable.  Version
        1.1909 supplies the missing file, as well as some minor changes
        to the hard-disk installation guidelines in the documentation.

HOST NAME

        amiga.physik.unizh.ch (130.60.80.80) in amiga/game/misc
        abdash11909.lha and abdash11909.readme

        GEnie:   Amiga RT, File #19195
        Delphi:  Amiga Forum, Recent Arrivals


PRICE

        $20US Requested.  

DISTRIBUTABILITY

        The program may be freely distributed, but not sold for 
        profit.  It may be included as part of the Fred Fish 
        library.  If you try it, and like it, you are asked to
        make a fair donation (~$20) to the author.



      _______________________________________________________________



AMOS PRO V1.12 UPDATE


TITLE

        AMOS Pro Update

VERSION

        This will update AMOS Pro to version 1.12

COMPANY

        Europress Software
        Europa House
        Adlington Park
        Macclesfield
        Cheshire SK10 4NP
        United Kingdom

AUTHOR

        Francois Lionet
        Francois sends the disks directly to me via US Postal mail and asks
that I spread them on the networks and in the USA.

DESCRIPTION

        AMOS Pro is a turbocharged BASIC like language.  Simple commands
let you do sprites, music, graphics, IFF animation, Library access, device
access, and lots of other things.  It will let you create any type of
program from games to utilities.  What makes it so special is that it is
simple to use!  If you have programmed in any language, even AmigaBASIC,
AMOS Pro will feel right at home and it will let you do more things in a
shorter amount of time. 
        This disk will give you the latest and greatest versioin of AMOS
Pro as of April 21, 1993.

NEW FEATURES

        This just fixes a few problems with v1.00, 1.10, and 1.11.

SPECIAL REQUIREMENTS

        You must already be a registered owner of AMOS Pro.  This disc will
update your current version to v1.12.

HOST NAME

        amiga.physik.unizh.ch (130.60.80.80) and other Aminet sites

DIRECTORY

        /amiga/dev/amos

FILE NAMES

        apro112.dms

PRICE

        AMOS Pro is a commerical product but this Updater Disc is absolutely
free!

DISTRIBUTABILITY

        This Updater Disc is PD so spread it wherever you can!

NOTES
        If you have any problems, please email me:
        Michael Cox (aj639@cleveland.freenet.edu)



      _______________________________________________________________





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> ONLINE WEEKLY STReport Online             People...  Are Talking!
  =============================



Fron GEnie's Amiga Roundtable:
-----------------------------


A post from D.BIEBER comparing computers and fast food...

 
        Personally, the Mac is NOT user-friendly.  It is minimalist/common-
denominator.  Or, to put it in hamburger terms

        Amiga => Burger King ("have it your way" > CLI/Windows/expansion
slots)

        Macintosh => McDonalds [don't look so surprised] (take it as we make
it...)

        MS-DOS systems => "here's a cow, tomatoes, charcoal... bring your own
knife..."

                           --------------------

Denny Atkin's (DENNYA) version...

 
Well, I'd go for it this way:

 Amiga == Aston Martin. Fast, smoooth ride, but much harder to get
   parts and accessories for. Wonderful for the autobahn, but
   sometimes problematic on Main Street. Far more popular in
   Britain.

 486 == '85 Chevy Camaro. Good performance, nowhere near as tight
    and smooth as the Porsche. Parts and add-ons can be found at
    any auto store, and even Sears. Great for in-town driving,
    but can't keep up with or take corners with the Porsche on
    windy country roads. Annoying grinding sound in rear axle.
    Your friends have heard of it.

 Mac == VW Microbus. All your hippie artists friends drive them. :)


                           --------------------


From Denny Atkin (DENNYA) about PC's...

 
Tae,

The Gateway's a great system, spec-wise. But you might want to go ahead and
give tech support a call now, so maybe you'll get off hold by the first time
you have a problem. :-)

 - - - - -

Tae did have a good reason to go for the PC -- the opportunity to get some
work on the side with it in college.

Word processing is NOT a good reason to change (WordPerfect and a DTP program
will give you everything you need for college papers-- anything else is bells
and whistles that will only serve to distract you from your writing), nor are
games. (Between classes, parties, and dating, there shouldn't be any time for
games in college. :-)

I've been working with my 486 for about two weeks now, and let me tell you,
Windows is a nightmare mystery. At least when something goes wrong with my
Amiga I can logically trace it back to the source. But when I change my video
refresh rate in 800x600 from 56Hz to 60Hz, I can no longer exit DOS
applications without locking up the machine? Huh? What a disgusting kludge
DOS/Windows is. My 486 gets used for games, for running COMPUTE's editing
software, and for CD-ROM access. If I had to give up the 486 or the Amiga, the
486 would be gone in a second--the Amiga's so much nicer for real work it's
scary.


                           --------------------


From Jim Meyer (JIM.MEYER) about the good ole PC's at work...
 
> Grrr. My stupid PC locks up sometimes....

 Heh heh heh heh heh heh.... We're in the process of configuring an Intel PC
(486-based) at work to serve as a kind of multi-platform machine.  Since we
have DOS-based products, Windows-based products, OS/2-based products, and now
Unix-based products, we had to throw a LOT of stuff at the machine.  (The Unix
is accomplished by running the machine as an X-station.)

 Our techs have now spent two weeks resolving all the addressing conflicts,
memory conflicts, and wonderful things like that, and the machine still locks
up when you do certain things.  We will probably have a list of things NOT to
do posted nearby.

 Of course, if the thing were an Amiga, all you'd do would be load the
software, pop the cards in, turn the thing on, and run.  I guess that'd put
too many techs out of work, though....

 The PC is what the C64 would have been if business had adopted it. 14 Zillion
different ways to do the same thing, and no single standard for any of them. 
Can you see any other industry putting up with this?

 Customer:  "I can't play my Led Zeppelin CD!"

 Tech: "Well, no.  Not with the Orbitron III speakers.  You have to use the
Maltimus speakers or the EarBlaster headphones."

 Customer: "Yeah, but I tried the EarBlaster headphones first.  They worked
fine for the Crosby, Stills & Nash tape I played before."

 Tech: "What??  You didn't say you had a CS&N tape installed!  You have to
remove that first, and play the first four minutes of "Bohemian Rhapsody"
before loading the Led Zeppelin CD!"

 Customer: "(sigh) OK.  Now, what if I want to play some Pat Metheny?"

 Tech: "With or without Lyle Maze?"

 Customer: "Well, both!"

 Tech: "(sigh)  That's an unsupported mode.  You can play Metheny without Maze
if you're using the Umeboshi tape player with a Sturm&Drang tape, or with the
Hibachi CD player.  But if you want to play Metheny with Maze, you have to
have a Boston Pops tape playing at the same time.  Oh... One more thing.  MAKE
SURE that you DO NOT have Showtime on, with Elayne Boozler, or HBO when
anything with Chuck Norris is playing."

 Customer: "<:::thud:::>"


                           --------------------


From Michael (SL-DEV) at SoftLogik about PageStream 3.0...

 
ANNOUNCEMENT: the suggested retail price of PageStream 3.0 will be $395. The
upgrade price from previous versions has not changed. Note that full copies
of PageStream 2.2 bought after March 15, 1993 are entitled to a free upgrade
(with proof of purchase date) to version 3.0, so current copies of
PageStream 2.2 are a great deal!


                           --------------------


A question to SoftLogik, from BLUE-KNIGHT...

 
Michael, will the upgrade from ProPage carry the same deal??? Or should I
wait for 3.0 To come out then upgrade my ProPage to pagestream???


And they respond...

 
Blue Knight: if you don't have PgS now, and you want to get 3.0, the cheapest
way to do so is to buy a full copy of PageStream 2.2 now, which will entitle
you to a free upgrade to 3.0. We sell a competitive upgrade to 2.2 for $175,
which would also entitle you to the free uprade to 3.0. Or you can buy it
from a dealer or mail order company. Your choice.


                           --------------------


Some more entertaining comments from Denny Atkin...

 
I was discussing Emplant with our resident Mac-fan editor and he was talking
about how the Mac is in trouble because there's almost no software available
for it that isn't available for the PC as well nowadays. I made the comment
"well, wouldn't you rather use it under the Mac OS" and he retorted "well, the
problem is, the PC multitasks much better than the Mac." Boy, what a true, yet
frightening, thought.

Unless you were doing publishing (even though you can get Quark et. al. for
Windows, the Mac support software for that stuff is better), I'd have a darned
hard time recommending a Mac nowadays. The OS is easier to use than Windows,
but if you're setting up the computer for a kind of person who never sees the
OS after he/she double- clicks an icon, does that make a big difference?

This truly frightens me. The Amiga's biggest struggle right now is not to lose
the minor niche it's carved into the computer market-- it's evident that the
machine isn't likely to be a major player. Now the Mac is losing its
stronghold. Atari's dead in the U.S. ("I'm not dead! I'm not dead!" "Shut up.
You will be soon!" "I feel happy!" ::THUNK::), as is NeXT. If Apple slips,
then there's NO alternative platform.

PowerPC's going to be stillborn, I think, since it doesn't offer a big enough
performance boost to offset the "risk" in a platform switch. (It's slower than
a Pentium even BEFORE you add the x86 emulation overhead for older
applications. Once  you add the overhead it's slower than a 486.)

Is there any overwhelming reason to buy a Mac? Right now, the Mac and Amiga
lead in video, a small niche market, and the Mac has an edge in DTP that's
rapidly going away. Are we doomed to a PC-only market in the U.S. in the near
future?

 -- -- -- --

If Commodore DOES deliver AAA Amigas in 94, and they provide awesome
performance, then perhaps the Amiga's market share could grow. But recent
cutbacks in development staff worry me quite a bit about whether Commodore's
going to keep that mid-94 timetable.


                           --------------------


From JSP (one of the Amiga RT sysops)...

 
A couple of interesting tidbits from today's (April 26, 1993) Infoworld:


"MS DOS 6.0 is a loaded gun:  Be careful where you point it"

(Second Look/ Kevin Strehlo)

[Last 3 paragraphs]

   Maybe it's time for all of us to revolt and say, "Enough is enough." 
Microsoft, we've put up with too many kludges and patches; we've learned too
many useless skills, such as as which hex address is for what, how to change
the hidden attribute of DBLSPACE.INI so we can change the assignment of our
compressed drive to a drive letter we were using on the network, and a
hundred other bits of esoterica.

   The house of DOS is falling down, and we shouldn't waste more time trying
to prop it up.  It's time to move on to a real operating system.  OS/2,
Windows NT, 32-bit DOS; your time has come.

   If only it were that easy.



"The PC industry's low-ball pricing may spell its own doom"

(Tech Talk/Steve Gibson)

[Last 3 paragraphs]

   I'll tell you what I think is new:  The amazingly low cost of these new
systems has virtually removed the barrier to entry for a whole new wave of
purchasers and users who are utterly unequipped to deal with the nightmarish
messes and debris we've created.

   Our technical support personnel glibly say to these confused people:  "Oh
yeah, that again.  All you have to do is to add the line
AutoPleaseNoRebootConfirm=1 to the [MiscDebris] section of the WOMBAT.INI
file in your C:\HIDDEN\THINGS directory, OK?  Click."

   We'll continue with this exploration next week.


                           --------------------


A new Amiga 1200 owner, NIGHT.STAR baffles a friend and Mac owner...

 
Note of comment on the Amiga's multi-tasking:  I had a friend over the other
night, an AVID Mac user, who has a Mac Plus, and access to Mac II's or
whatever they are out of his ear.  I showed him my $500 A1200, a few of the
things it can do, began downloaded from GEnie, switched to play a mod, switced
to do some Mandelbrot renderings, then started SimAnt, all running a once. 
Then the screen blanker kicked in (as we started talking).  His eyes turned to
the screen and said, "But your system hasn't even BEGUN to slow down yet..."

Since then, he has been trying to figure out how to pay tuition and afford an
Amiga 1200. ;)


                           --------------------


Here's an idea Commodore should pay attention to, from C.JEFTS...

 
I use an A-570 CD-Rom drive with my special ed students. Phillips has sent 
my school a CD-I player packaged with 21 good quality CD's for less than 
$1100.00. Commodore should seek a similar path. Beats warehousing units.
Most schools that do have CD ROM PC's have Media people that don't  know the
difference between MPC, Windows, DOS. They order a lot of incomp software.
Might be a way to get units into the schools.  The CD-I software seems to be
a bit better than what I have found for my CDTV CDTV A-570. Excuse my broken
sentences. I've not used this editor before.


                         -------------------------


From the Amiga Conference on BIX:
--------------------------------


TITLE: Multimedia Support Person

Until Friday, April 23, 1993, when I was laid off, I was gainfully employed
by Commodore Business Machines, Inc. as their Eastern US, Multimedia
Support Representative. Now, I'm available to accept a full or contract
employment opportunity with another organization. If you can help, I would
appreciate any assistance that anyone might be able to provide me in
locating a suitable position.

While at Commodore, I was responsible for the design, development and
delivery of multimedia supported sales, marketing and training
presentations for independent resellers, employees and public audiences.
I was directly engaged in the creative use of leading edge computer
technology (the Amiga) and multimedia authoring tools (AmigaVision, SCALA,
etc.) for the creation, manipulation and integration of text, graphics,
sounds, real-time animations, music, full motion video and digital
effects, such as morphing included in a variety of multimedia presentations
personally presented and/or used by others throughout the United States. I
would like to continue to do similar work, but I open to other options and
I am willing to relocate if required.

Thanks, in advance.

Fredie J. Layberger
11521 Buttonwood Court
Reston, VA 22091
703/758-1619


                         -------------------------


From FidoNet's Amiga_Tech Conference:
------------------------------------


Num: 323 
Date: 22 Apr 93  01:53:07
From: John Benn
  To: Steve Cole
Subj: Re: Count

BP>     Anyone got an unofficial (obviously) count of the # of Amigas of
BP> any model sold in the world as yet, sinec 1985??  I'm wondering roughly
BP> how many are out there!

     There are roughly 5 million Amigas world-wide:

   U.K.: 1.5 million
   Germany: 1.4 million
   Italy: 700,000
   France: 275,000
   Scandinavia: 90,000
   Benelux: 45,000
   Rest of Europe: 35,000
   North America: 600,000
   Rest of World: 400,000

There are only around 4.3 million Amiga users(many own multiple Amigas,
I own 2).  These numbers are looking better every month.  The A1200 is
selling at a rate of 60,000 units a month in the U.K. and seems to be
selling rather well over here in North America as well.  I think you'll
see the total hit about 6 million by the end of the year if not 6.5
million.  It really is a great time to be an Amiga owner :)

 * Q-Blue v0.7 [NR] *
--- Xenolink 1.0 Z.3,  XQwk Mail Door  v.95q  [REG 10010]
 * Origin: Darkstar BBS (519) 255-1073 Call Today (1:246/46)


                         ------------------------


 Num: 330 *s
Date: 18 Apr 93  15:44:00
From: John Hendrikx
  To: Blake Patterson
Subj: Nonaga blitter vs aga

 >> News: The AAA2 was originally lacking chunky pixel mode, but
 >> complaints from developers have encouraged Commodore to make support
 >> for chunky to planar conversion hardware a part of the OS.  In other
 >> words when the AAA2 ships it will probably ship with an extra little
 >> processor to do chunky to planar conversions and this will be
 >> supported in OS 3.01 and above. See ya

 >      Well, how is it that the AGA blitter has a "4-fold" increase in

It hasn't it, there just is more bandwidth available on Aga machines, but
the blitter doesn't use it as it is the same blitter as in Non-aga
machines.

 > performance?  Also, what exactly is a "chunky-pixel" mode?  Also,
 > does the AGA A1200/A4000 support "chunky-pixels??"

A Chunky pixel is one byte which contains the color of the same point on
your monitor, so you can easily get the color of a pixel just by Peek-ing
or a Move.b.  Normally you would have to go through all the bitplanes to
read 1 bit and then combine all those bits to get the actual color of that
pixel.

As you can see the Chunky pixel method will be a lot faster if you want to
know which color a specific pixel has, but it also is alot faster for
programs that calculate objects one pixel at the time and store it. In
chunky mode you just Poke or Move.b it to the right location and continue
processing the next pixel, instead of having the split the pixel up in bits
and then set/clear the bits it in the corresponding Bitplanes.

The PC's use the Chunky pixel method for a long time now, and that's
_THE_ reason why games like X-Wing, Castle Wolfenstein, Alone in the Dark
and Commanche maximum overkill  are a lot faster in Texture mapping
(ie. Real timescaling and rotation) then games like Legend of Valour on
Amiga, because all games of this type calculate the rotation/scaling one
pixel at the time andthen store it... so when C= implements a Chunky
converter or a Chunky screenmode then Amiga will have the best of both
worlds and will again blow pc games like X-wing away by far, as it should
be !

Now that question if A1200/4000 has chunky modes, well they don't.
Chunky modes/converters will be implemented in the next chipset.... I can't
wait, I am already saving my money to get the next-generation chipset as
soonas it comes available... (I am currently programming a texture mapped
Dungeon Master type of game, and want to be the first to implement it on
the next generation chipset so everybody can see the power of the Amiga!)

Grtz John

--- GEcho 1.00
 * Origin: If all else fails, read the manual (2:285/813.8)


                         ------------------------


Num: 275 
Date: 19 Apr 93  13:57:12
From: Seth Stroh
  To: Chris Stout
Subj: Re: Mips

Not sure about the A4000 but heres the specs on the 68060...

68060 will be available to develoers in the first quarter of 1994 (from
what I read they will have them before that time so that they can have
products that use the 68060 available for sale in the first quarter of
1994).  The price is supposed to be something like $500 per chip!  Thats a
bit expensive so let me tell you what it can do...
 
68060 has the ability to execute more than one instruction per clock
cycle due to two parallel instruction pipelines for integer instruction and
also a third pipeline for floating point instructions.  The chip also has
the ability to do branch prediction to increase speed even more.
The '060 will be available at 50Mhz (resulting in a preformance of 77Mips
and 10Mflops) and also a 66Mhz (resulting in a preformance of 102Mips and
14Mflops).  An interesting thing to note is that that is the preformance
with current software (developed with compiliers that are unaware of the
68060) because the chip is designed to execute multiple instructions per
clock cycle it would be possible to increase the Mips rating by changing
compiliers so that they could take advantage of this feature.  If code was
writen to take advantage of this ability it may be possible to get up to
100Mips from the 50Mhz chip and 130Mips from the 66Mhz.  There have also
been some rumors that stated that Motorola would also produce a 100Mhz
version of the chip but that is only a rumor as far as I know.
 
Some other fetures of the '060 are dual 8K cache, 0.5 micron static cmos
allowing for lower heat operation and the ability for the chip to run from
a 3.3 volt power supply in notebook type computers.  (The Intel Pentium is
based on older 0.8 micron and does not have these features.  Also the
Pentium requires more transistors on chip to remain compatibility with
earlier Intel chips which adds to the heat problem.  The Pentium has
something like 3.2 million transistors with larger 0.8 micron spacing and
the '060 gets the same preformance with 2 million transistors and tighter
0.5 micron spacing.  The closer you get the tansistors together and the
fewer you have the lower the operating temp. of the chip AND the higher the
frequency you can run the clock at...

*FSED91j*
--- Star-Net v1.02a
 * Origin: Bermuda Triangle HST/DS 600megs 206-771-8420 (1:343/53.0)


                         ------------------------


Num: 324 
Date: 22 Apr 93  01:53:09
From: John Benn
  To: Seth Stroh
Subj: Re: Mips

A few other notes about the 060 are in order here.  It seems there is some
discrepancy in the MFlops you're going to get out of one.  Well from what
I gather, no one but Motorola really knows for sure, but you'll get
anywhere from 10-16 MFlops for the 50 Mhz 060 and 14-20 MFlops for to
66 Mhz 060, depending on your compiler and a lot of other things.  Either
way, it's going to make one hell of an Amiga:)

One more thing, the Pentium has 8 32bit integer registers and 8 64bit
floating point register.  The 060 has 16 32bit integer registers and 16
64bit floating point registers.  What this means is that intel still sucks
and that Motorola is still awesome!!!

 * Q-Blue v0.7 [NR] *
--- Xenolink 1.0 Z.3,  XQwk Mail Door  v.95q  [REG 10010]
 * Origin: Darkstar BBS (519) 255-1073 Call Today (1:246/46)


                         -------------------------


From: Tom Jones
To: Sanjeev Massey                
Subj: 4000/Ec30 Rumors                                                      
Date: 23 Apr 93  21:52:33

Hello Sanjeev,

 SM> I think the probelm is that people think that the A4000/030 is an
 SM> alervative to getting an A4000/040, when in fact it is more of an
 SM> alternative to purchasing an A1200.

I thought the A1200/20 was the replacement for the A500, the A4000/30 was
the replacement for the A2000, and the A4000/40 was the upgrade from A3000.
I think it makes perfect sense, and we all go up one teir in processer
power.

The *important* and major difference in the 500 vs the 2000 is precisely
the same as the difference between the 1200 vs the 4000/30: the addition
of expansion slots and larger power supply, internal expandability.

I can't really relate to buying a 4000/30 as an alternative to a 1200. I
rather think Commodore would choke on the idea that they are positioning
the 4000/30 as competition for their own 1200 machine.

The price of a 4000/30 (too high) and the cheapskate trick of using a
68EC030 daughter board will only serve to slow down the acceptance of the
2000 replacement until they put out the "68030 with 68882 daughter board"
model that the experienced users expected in the first place. I feel sure
that this message is ringing in the halls of Westchester by now, and it
won't be long before hunger drives them to flog the genius who thought
this up.

--- April V0.993PBeta+
 * Origin: April message tosser/viewer (1:147/2020.5)



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> About Safe Hex International  STR Infofile
  ==========================================


Our organization, SAFE HEX INTERNATIONAL (SHI), is a grass roots movement
which started in 1990 with Amiga computers.  Today we are an organization
with around 250 members who are all, more or less, involved in our work.

We now have 20 virus centers around the world which have free phone help
lines as well as the latest Public Domain virus killers on disk.  These disks
have been translated into relevant languages with all imaginable
instructions.  Even inexperienced users can immediately understand what to
do.

The price of these disks is around $5 US, including disk and postage (a price
anyone can afford).  These disks are updated 12 times a year and contain
programs which are generally better than the best commerical virus killers!

Our organization (or our "movement", I should say) does NOT have the formal
structure one normally associates with clubs, associations, and the like.  We
are a non-profit making organization with a very particular aim: we try to
make active efforts which, in many ways, resemble those of Greenpeace.  The
resemblance to Greenpeace is not just coincidental.  Greenpeace works in the
biological environment.  We work in the data environment.

                               DATA POLLUTION

I am often asked the question, "What should I do if I want to be 100% secure?
Which virus killers should I use, and what should I do?"  Unfortunately, I
have to disappoint people because the answer is: If you want to be 100%
secure, then don't buy a computer!

The situation is that one can never be 100% secure, especially today with all
the computer viruses which flourish around the world.  This insecurity is
actually much worse than the actual damage one suffers if one's computer is
attacked by a virus.

Socrates, the great classical Greek philosopher, asked his enemies to be
compassionate.  He said, Kill me, or let me live, but make up your minds up
soon, I can't live with this insecurity.  The hemlock which he was forced to
drink put an end to his insecurity, as we know.

Socrates touched a point here which we can all recognize in this day and age,
what with our modern data installations: Insecurity and impotence.  I reckon
that having to live with the continual threat from hacking or an attack by
computer viruses is far worse than the actual damage which is being done.
Unfortunately we have to live with this insecurity.  One cannot go back in
time.

Is there a real threat to our data environment?  Our work at SHI concentrates
on computer viruses.  We work against hacking and other forms of destruction
or misuse of data.  But, in our opinion, the greatest danger to our data
environment is the explosive increase in new computer viruses.  The number of
new computer viruses is currently increasing four-fold EVERY YEAR.  If we
just look a few years ahead, the number of viruses around will reach
monstrous proportions.  As far as PC viruses are concerned, where we today
have around 1000 viruses, this will increase to more than 25,000 in 1996 if
development continues at the same rate.

What is even worse is that the virus types are getting so advanced that many
experts today anticipate that we maybe will have to give up or find such
involved procedures for finding viruses that the efficiency of our machines
will be severely curtailed.  One possible solution to the majority of the
problems is to maybe alter the hardware so that a program does not get the
chance to lie resident in the computer's memory.

It is, of course, just as apparent as with our biological environment that
one cannot alter the actual conditions from one day to the next.  But here
and now we can maybe alter the conditions for the generations to come through
information, legislation, and the like, so that the damage is limited.

Data security is expensive but necessary.  Outsiders often find it hard to
understand our problems over data security.  What actually does it mean if
the data environment is polluted by hackers and viruses?  Maybe it can be
explained when I state that, even now, these problems cost an awful lot of
money.  Of course, if can't be counted in dollars and cents, or pounds and
pence, but a qualified guess is that is costs data installation users between
US $10 billion and US $20 billion annually.  That sounds like an astronomical
sum to many ears, but corresponds to a cost of between US $100 and US $200
for each individual user, when assessed against the more than 120 billion
computers which are sold today.

Some people will maintain that users who only have their computers as a hobby
do not have expenses of this size.  But, with hand on heart, your leisure
time is also worth money too, isn't it?  I would reckon my leisure time to be
worth the same as my work time.

But, besides the time itself which is used for virus control and backup of
programs, most users have to obtain special software for virus control and
backup, in all a sum of maybe US $50 to US $500 annually.

Paradoxically, the actual damage caused by viruses and hacking costs much
less than the preventive measures.  Personally, I think that the damage costs
users less than US $1 billion annually, but this of course is just a
calculated guess based on my experience from referrals from a large number of
users.

                              WHAT CAN ONE DO?

We at Safe Hex International are so stubborn that we will no longer accept a
"polluted" data environment.  The beginning of our organization was when we
began to collect computer viruses.

We sent them to various clever programmers around the world who then made
virus killers.  Since then, our project has torn ahead so fast that we can
hardly keep up with the progress.  Here are just a few of the new
developments:

* We write articles for those magazines which do not publish enough
  information on data security.  For example, several American magazines are
  two years out of date on this matter.

* We provide backgrounfd material for the magazines so that their articles
  are more up-to-date.

* We have made contact with radio and TV.  Our first program on our work on
  data security was transmitted by Danish local radio and the national TV
  channel, TV2.

* We have established a "Virus Test Center" where all viruses are tested on
  all the virus killers and reports of these tests are published.

* We have the world's largest collection of Amiga viruses.  These viruses are
  sent to us by our members.

* We have an "ideas bank" where programmers in our group can get information
  and ideas for smart new virus test methods.

* We are in the process of constructing a standard program which can
  recognize all Amiga viruses when it is used as a sub-program of other
  programs.

* We are in the process of making a special virus program which can
  automatically control viruses on "Bulletin Boards".  These boards are
  probably the source of 80% of the viruses spread today.  It is therefore
  VERY important that something is done here.

* We are contacting software suppliers to get them to use "safety disks",
  that is, disks which are 100% secure against virus infection because they
  cannot be written on.  Before long all the Danish libraries which lend out
  software will have these disks.  More and more of our large software
  suppliers (ie, "WordPerfect" and IBM) have also gone over to the use of
  these "safety disks".

                       3 DATA SECURITY PRIZES IN 1992

Our work at Safe Hex International has been recognized by the public.  In
early 1992, SHI was presented with awards three times for our worldwide virus
work:

The first award was presented on February 29th by the Danish Computer Trade
Organizations (ie, the PC organizations).  The prize was given at the Danish
"Dataforening's" (Data-society's) annual safety conference at the SAS Hotel
in Scandinavia.

The second award was presented on March 21st at the annual Amiga Expo in
Copenhagen, Denmark.

The third award was presented on May 1st by AmiCon in Stockholm, Sweden, and
was given for our worldwide virus work.  Of course, we are very pleased that
our work has been recognized and appreciated!

                               NEW ASSIGNMENTS

New devilishly thought-out computer viruses will always be a threat,
regardless of whatever ingenious combatting plans one can design to prevent
data loss.  One cannot stop this development, whether through legislation or
by utilising virus killers or the like.  SHI has set up a "Reward Fund",
currently at US $3000.  This money will be paid as a reward to people who
tell us the name and address of the person(s) who have made these viruses.
We hope, in this way, to do away with a number of viruses, now that it is
suddenly dangerous for the virus makers to boast to their friends.  We have
already had the first notification!

Legislation in the data area has been very neglected and is totally in
abstance in many countries.  SHI therefore applied to the European Parliament
in Autumn 1991 to get a motion passed on the harmonization and tightening-up
of our laws on data security.  Today, Several countries in the EC have no
legislation at all in this area.  On January 12, 1992, our bill we dealt with
in the European Parliament, with support from several members, including the
Danish EMP's Christian Rovsing and Freddy Blak.  A committee will not be set
up where SHI can be influentioal and, finally, a law can be expected to be
passed during the next 12 months.  We think that it is reasonable that we get
unified rules in the EC.  As known, computer viruses do not recognize
national borders.

Recently a large German magazine publishing company was reported to the
German police.  They organized a competition amongst their readers for
someone who could make the "best" computer virus.  We believe it is criminal
to encourage people to do things which are against the law.  An aggravating
circumstance is that the magazine in question had even printed a short
description as to how to make viruses.  We are shocked about and, of course,
condemn this sort of behavior.

We are very dependent upon people supporting our work.  I hope particularly
that the media will supoort us because you don't get far these days without
public relations.  We started up as an Amiga organization but I hope that we
can begin this year to set up the first PC virus center.  We have already
obtained the hardware for it.

                        Erik Loevendahl Soerensen                  
                        SAFE HEX INTERNATIONAL (MAIN)            
                        Snaphanevej 10                             
                        Dk-4720 Praestoe                         
                        DENMARK                                     

 
   Jim Maciorowski                                Michael Arends 
   SHI/USA East Coast                             SHI/USA West Coast 
   PO Box 724                                     PO Box 1531 
   Port Richey, FL  34673-0724                    Lynnwood, WA  98046-1531 



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> Usenet Review:  Macro68 Assembler
  ---------------------------------
  By Dimitri Tom Dussias
  (22dussia@cs.wmich.edu)


PRODUCT NAME

        Macro68 version 3.165


BRIEF DESCRIPTION

        Macro68, the best 680x0 assembler on the Amiga!


AUTHOR/COMPANY INFORMATION

        Name:           Digisoft
        Address:        12 Dinmore Street
                        Moorooka. 4105
                        Brisbane, Queensland
                        Australia

        Distributed in the USA by:

        Name:           The Puzzle Factory
        Address:        PO Box 986
                        Veneta, OR  97487
                        
        Telephone:      (800) 828-9952


LIST PRICE

        $150.00 (US retail).  I paid about ~$135 for my copy, including
shipping and COD charges.


SPECIAL HARDWARE AND SOFTWARE REQUIREMENTS

        HARDWARE

                None.  

                I would recommend at least 1 MB RAM -- the more the better!
                I would also recommend a hard drive, but it's not necessary.

        SOFTWARE

                None.
                Works with  2.04 & 3.0 versions of the OS.
                (Also 1.2 & 1.3, but who still has these? :') )


COPY PROTECTION

        None.


MACHINE USED FOR TESTING

        Macro68 has been tested on:

        A1000 : 512K Chip RAM, 2MB fast RAM, Kickstart 1.3.
        A1200 : 2MB Chip RAM, Kickstart 3.0.
        A2000 : 1MB Chip RAM, 6MB Fast RAM + a 68040, Kickstart 2.04 


REVIEW

        (This is my first review, so go easy on me:  I am a CS major, NOT an
English major!)

        Macro68 has to be the BEST assembler on the Amiga yet available!
This is one great assembler; offering EXCELLENT flexibility and control, it
also is THE fastest assembler I have seen.  Macro68 has a fantastic ability
to configure to whatever you want it to do.  You can change most anything in
Macro68:  from the opcodes, to the way Macro68 reports errors!  It also
supports an external command interperter (like ARexx).


        Let's compare a few assemblers out there, starting with the PD
assemblers like A68K and the rest.  These are OK if you are on a tight
budget (can you say free?), or you just want to try some stuff out in
assembly.  But in reality, no one would ever use any of these to write
commercial-grade code.  You can take a look at them, and play with them, but
not much else.  

        Now, SEKA:  basically, if you got this, then get rid of it!  Why? It
really is an old product.  While it has some useful stuff in it like
reading/writing disk sectors directly (i.e., load Bootblock), has a
disassembler in it, and lets you modify memory directly, it also does not
support any of the '020 or above opcodes, and it has some major bugs!!  This
product has NO support available, since no one is doing updates!  (No one
worth mentioning that is.)  Oh, it also uses non-standard opcodes, like
blk.l instead of the correct dcb.l.

        Next on the list is ArgASM.  Since this product is not supported
anymore (or so I am told), don't bother with this either.  It also has some
major bugs in it and is basically SEKA with a face lift.

        Next, we take a look at CAPE V2.5.  This was actually a pretty good
assembler, but with a crummy editor built in.  They also included a
standalone version without the editor.  This product is not being produced
anymore, but I hear it still is being sold by INOVAtronics.  This also does
not support any 68020/30/40/MMU opcodes. This assembler shows its age:  it's
slow, and since the author has moved on to ADAPT, you should also move on....

        Next is ADAPT (HX68).  This is the update to CAPE, and it comes with
no built-in editor.  It is a standalone program, has ARexx support, and
supports 68020 opcodes (maybe 030 & 040, but I only played with it a day or
so).  It does not support the new syntax that Motorola has defined.  This is
better than all the above, but still can't compare to Macro68!

        Next we take a look at assemblers supplied with SAS/C and Aztec C.
Basically, they come free with the C compiler, and are not really that fast,
and neither support the new syntax that Motorola has defined.  You can use
these; however, I found that they are more trouble too use, so why go
through the pain, unless of course you only write small programs in
assembly!  

        Finally, there's Devpac.  This is a very nice assembler:  it's fast,
has some good support, and the newest version also supports 68020 and
opcodes!  It does not support the new syntax as defined by Motorola though!
Devpac has a nice editor built in, and allows you to control optimization
levels and other miscellaneous stuff via a control panel.  It also has a
debugger which is fairly useful.  No real problems with Devpac, but it does
not offer the level of customizing that Macro68 does.  This assembler would
be my choice if Macro68 wasn't produced. 

        That is a quick look at what the competition offers, and none of them
can match what Macro68 has to offer.  Macro68 even includes a utility to
convert all your old source code to the new syntax defined by Motorola!
In case you're wondering what the heck this new syntax is, its basically
a better way to code.  I think a small example is in order.

        Take this small code stub:

                Old syntax                      New syntax
                ----------                      ----------
          move.l Gbase,a6                    move.l (Gbase),a6
          lea   data(pc),a4                  lea (data,pc),a4
          jsr   _LVOWait(a6)                 jsr (_LVOWait,a6)
          move.w d1,20(a0)                   move.w d1,(20,a0)

        While I won't go into what those instructions do, they do make it
more clear what's happening!  Motorola did a nice job on this!  Now, back to
Macro68.  It's ultra configurable:  the ONLY assembler I have used that
allows you to create your own opcodes!  For example, some assemblers use the
opcode "blk.l" instead of the "dcb.l" instruction.  If by chance you run into
source code that has this, you can instruct Macro68 that when ever it sees
"blk", to compile it as if it were "dcb"!  You can even introduce new
opcodes in case, say, the '060 comes out with new instructions and you would
like to write '060 specific code.  Just edit your custom file, insert the new
opcodes and how they should be translated, and voila!  You have a 68060
compiler!

        You can basically edit all the ASCII output that Macro68 produces
and change the way it reports errors (or whatever) too you.  So, instead of
say "ERROR on line 322, invalid opcode," you want it to say "{turn on some
Blue text with a white background} ERROR! {change colors} invalid opcode on
line 322!"  Or whatever... you can change lots of things, including adding
more information like what pass the compiler is on, the filename of the
source that contained the error (for compiling multiple source files), etc.
You can basically tell it what YOU want to see!  You can change anything to
fit your needs.  

        Perhaps the best reason to get Macro68 is the speed.  Today, I
compiled my 1485 lines of code in under 1 second!  (On my A2000 + 68040.)
This assembler really is a speed demon!  And that code contained lots of
"defines" from C= include files.  

        I really don't know what more to say.  I truly believe that this IS
the BEST assembler ever produced.  Nice job Digisoft!  Oh, I forgot to
mention that Macro68 also supports the 68881/68882 floating point units and
the 688851 MMU.  It also has support for the Amiga Copper, but I can't
recommend you use this since this only works with the older Kickstart:  the
copper list has changed format in Kickstart 3.0!!!  But it does work for
1.2/1.3/2.04 versions of the OS, and nicely at that!


DOCUMENTATION

        The manual that comes with Macro68 is about 127 pages long and tells
you all the important information you need to get started.  This manual does
NOT try to teach you assembly; so if you're a beginner, buy a good book.
Since I come from a technical background, I found the manual easy to
understand.  It is better written than (say) the SUN SPARC manuals, but not
as nice as the SAS/C manuals. It also does a good job at explaining how to
configure files to suit your needs.  It also has a list of all the
opcodes/directives it supports; but again, if you don't see what you want,
add it yourself!  :')


LIKES

        What can I say, I really love Macro68!  It IS the BEST assembler!  I
love the ability to configure basically everything about Macro68!  Also, a
big THANKS for the new syntax conversion utility!


DISLIKES

        About the only thing missing from Macro68 is they don't supply a
debugger with Macro68 as Devpac does.  However, if I wanted a good
debugger, I would get the New Metascope!!  But I can always wish that
Metascope came with Macro68! :')

        And, I really wish that Digisoft would make a control panel that
could control the compiling aspects of Macro68 like optimization level, what
LIBS to include, screen out certain warning messages...  essentially, I want
something similar to what SAS/C offers with SCOPTS!  Macro68 does have a
mini-version of this called M68Iface, and its source code is included, but I
rather have them do it.  Call me lazy....

        Um, lastly, it would be nice to hear if any updates have been
released, but I imagine that this could be expensive.  But what's the point
of sending in the registration card then? I didn't even get a form letter
saying "Thanks for getting Macro68...if you have any problems call...."
Then again, the only info I got from any of the above assembler companies
was from INOVAtronics (about Metascope) and Aztec (about V5.x of the
compiler), and not a word from anyone else!  Call me silly, but I would like
to be noticed!


BUGS

        None that I have run across, and I have compiled more than 10
gigabytes of source with Macro68.  No crashes or bugs yet!


VENDOR SUPPORT

        Since this product is made in Australia, the USA support team is The
Puzzle factory.  I have not called them since I haven't had any problems!
However, I will most likely be contacting them in the future to get the new
3.0 include files as soon as C= releases them!  

WARRANTY

        None really, except that they will replace defective program disks.
(Maybe more, but I really don't know!)


CONCLUSIONS

        All I can say is if you're looking for a FAST assembler that is easy
to use and supports ALL Motorola 680x0 chips, then get Macro68.  You won't be
sorry!


COPYRIGHT NOTICE

        Copyright 1993 Demetri Dussias.  All rights reserved.
                     Reprinted with permission.



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> Rendered Reality                     "I render, therefore I am."
  ================
  By Mike Troxell



Every once in a while a new piece of 3-D software comes along that's not
only useful, but teaches you something as well.. For me, Tim Wilson's
CycleMan (or MotionMan for Lightwave) was one of those programs. I'd been
struggling along trying to understand Imagine's Cycle Editor for several
months with a limited amount of success. I learned more about setting up
cycles in my first evening with CycleMan than I had in the past several
months working on my own.

For those of you not familiar with CycleMan or MotionMan, CycleMan is a
humanoid 3-D object to use in Imagine animations (MotionMan is the
Lightwave version). You can move CycleMan/MotionMan's head, arms,
hands, fingers, legs, feet, ect. in either Imagine or Lightwave to create
some very interesting animations. Imagine (pun intended) the "liquid metal"
android in Terminator 2 and you will have a rough idea of what CycleMan
looks like.

Although I have done several animations in which I've used CycleMan, and I
think its well worth the price, I've always had one problem with CycleMan.
While ts 'artificial' look works to it's advantage in ome animations, for
other projects it just isn't realistic enough. I'm not the only one with
this complaint. A lot of people have written to Tim Wilson and asked for a
more detailed/realistic looking CycleMan/MotionMan object.  Well, it looks
like Tim has been reading those letters. I just recieved a brochure in the
mail from Crestline Software describing Tim's new 'Humanoid' 3-D object.

"Humanoid" is a set of four 3-D objects for Imagine and Lightwave3D. Each
package includes a male, muscular male, female and child object in two
levels of detail, high detail for closeups, quality animation and
stills, and low detail for faster rendering and blocking. Tim's taken the
suggestions of a lot of CycleMan/MotionMan users into consideration when he
made these objects. They are a lot more realistic looking... more detailed.
The objects that make up each figure's face have seperately identified
areas of polygons for each feature. To change the look of a specific
feature all you have to do is select the surface area by name and apply
whatever attributes you want. Eyebrows, eyeliner, iris, pupil and lips
are all defined as seperate subgroups. Run and walk cycles are included
and can be morphed into each other in the Imagine version. The Humanoid
package includes a library of morph targets for the head to simulate
different facial expressions such as smiling, frowning, surpise, ect.,
and the phonetics for speech. This is one of the areas that interested
me most when I read the brochure. Imagine (sorry) being able to set up a
Max Headroom type talking head animation.  All the figures have fully
compatible object construction, allowing a man to be morphed into a
woman, or a child to be morphed into an adult. Morphable hand poses are
also included to simulate different gestures.  All the figures are designed
in a hierarchy of movable limbs.  Even the eyes and eyelids are movable.
Tim has included walk and run cycles to make animating the figures simple.
You can also morph the walk cycle into a run cycle in the Imagine version.
There are two levels of detail included for each figure, high detail
versions for close-ups, quality animation and stills and low detail
versions for faster rendering and blocking. All the figures are designed
to real world scale. Crestline states that "Rendering and animation of the
models may be used for commercial applications, with no special permission
required". (YES!!)

The suggested retail price is $195 but Crestline is offering the Humanoid
package to registered CycleMan users for $125. The Imagine version of
Humanoid is available now. The Lightwave version is supposed to be released
"around the end of April."

System requirements:  Imagine or Lightwave, 6 Megs RAM, hard drive, 68030
or 68040 "strongly recommended."

HUMANOID
Crestline Software Publishing
P.O. Box4691
Crestline, CA 92325 USA
909-338-1786



"""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""


> Usenet Review:  Fusion Forth A2000 Accelerator
  ==============================================
  By Christopher Davis
  (cld@wucs1.wustl.edu)


PRODUCT NAME

        Fusion Forty accelerator


BRIEF DESCRIPTION

        The Fusion Forty (abbreviated as "F40" in this review) is a 68040
accelerator card for the Amiga 2000.  It connects via the processor slot and
may be populated with 4, 8, 16, 20, or 32 MB of 80ns (or faster) 32-bit
RAM.  My board has "Plug and Go" ROMs version 2.1.


AUTHOR/COMPANY INFORMATION

        Name:           RCS Management
        Address:        120 McGill Street
                        Montreal, Quebec
                        H2Y 2E5  Canada

        Telephone:      (514) 871-4924
        FAX:            (514) 871-4926
        BBS:            (514) 871-9881


LIST PRICE

        $1170 (US) with no 32-bit RAM, when purchased directly from RCS.
Street price:  unknown.  I got mine during a special for Amiga User Groups
and paid $995 for the board and $175 for 4 MB RAM.  At the time, other 68040
boards were selling for $2000 or more.


SPECIAL HARDWARE AND SOFTWARE REQUIREMENTS

        HARDWARE

                An Amiga 2000.  I recommend a hard drive.

        SOFTWARE

                Works under AmigaDOS 1.3 and higher.  If you have AmigaDOS
                2.1, all you need is the CPU command in the C: directory and
                LIBS:68040.library.  For lower AmigaDOS versions, additional
                software is provided on the F40 install disk (SetPatch,
                SetFF, FFCache).  I did not try the board under AmigaDOS
                1.3, but the board does support it.


COPY PROTECTION

        None.


MACHINE USED FOR TESTING

        Amiga 2000  (ECS -- see below)
        IVS Trumpcard Pro SCSI Disk controller
        Supra 2000 Memory Card with 4 MB 16 bit Fast Ram
        DKB MegaChip 2000 (2 Meg Chip Ram) and Super Denise
        AmigaDOS 2.04
        Fusion Forty Accelerator with 4 MB of 32-bit Fast RAM


REVIEW

        The F40 is a 28 MHz 68040 accelerator board for the Amiga 2000.
(The manual says 25MHz, but all my system measurement software says the
processor is overclocked to 28 MHz.)  It has a built in math coprocessor
(FPU) and Memory Management Unit (MMU).  And in case you want to go back to
your 68000, there is a hardware switch on the back plate to disable the
040.  This change should NEVER be made while the machine is running.

        The F40 is cleanly designed, with no traces or pins wired together.
There are a couple of surface-mounted chips, but the rest are socketed.  The
board is 6-layer with separate ground and power planes.  There are 3
expansion connectors on the board for future use.

        Before I got the F40, I hadn't really had much experience with
hardware installation, but the board was quick and easy to install.  Software
installation was handled via Commodore's Installer program... very nice and
easy to work with.

        The first thing I noticed was that everything was so quick.  Things
just jumped out onto the screen.  Next, I set all the caches for maximum
performance.  I wanted to get the most out of the hardware.  Some software
broke because of this; I cover this topic in more depth in the BUGS section,
below.

        Of course, one of the biggest benefits of the processor upgrade was
in multitasking.  I would experience pauses with my old 68000 while doing the
most mundane things.  With the F40, I have no such problems.  I have a
number of tasks running simultaneously with no discernible pauses and no
noticeable slowdown.  I have downloaded files at high speeds while compiling,
working with a Digi-Paint picture, or processing JPEG graphics with
HamLabPlus (a great program -- shameless plug for Ed Hamway).

        Just how fast is the board?  I did some benchmarking with a
pre-release version of AIBB 6.0 and with SysInfo.  I chose AIBB because I
believe the suite of tests is a pretty good cross-section of the computing we
all do.  It is composed of integer and floating point math, and some
graphics tests, including a piece of a rudimentary raytracing algorithm.
During the tests, I chose the A4000/040 as my base machine.  All caches were
active, and advanced code generation options were activated where
applicable.  Also, FPUs were utilized where they existed.  The following
table shows the results in the form of percentages faster or slower than the
A4000/040.  For example, a rating of 1.26 means "26% faster than an
A4000/040," and a rating of 0.63 means "37% slower than an A4000/040."

-----------------------------------------------------------------------
Tests      |  A4000-40  |  A2000-F40  |  A600  |  A1200  |  A3000-25  |
           |    BASE    |             |        |         |            |
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
EmuTest    |    1.00    |    1.26     |  0.06  |   0.12  |   0.31     |
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
InstTest   |    1.00    |    1.59     |  0.10  |   0.17  |   0.54     |
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
EllipseTest|    1.00    |    0.61     |  0.18  |   0.44  |   0.43     |
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
WritePixel |    1.00    |    0.43     |  0.07  |   0.19  |   0.23     |
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
LineTest   |    1.00    |    0.62     |  0.53  |   0.92  |   0.58     |
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
Matrix     |    1.00    |    1.47     |  0.06  |   0.23  |   0.63     |
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
Sieve      |    1.00    |    1.74     |  0.09  |   0.37  |   0.79     |
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
IMath      |    1.00    |    1.13     |  0.02  |   0.21  |   0.43     |
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
Dhrystone  |    1.00    |    1.13     |  0.05  |   0.11  |   0.29     |
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
MemTest    |    1.00    |    2.43     |  0.29  |   0.79  |   1.88     |
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
Sort       |    1.00    |    1.20     |  0.05  |   0.14  |   0.36     |
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
TGTTest    |    1.00    |    0.72     |  0.26  |   0.56  |   0.51     |
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
Savage     |    1.00    |    1.16     | <0.01  |   0.01  |   1.25     |
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
Flops      |    1.00    |    1.13     | <0.01  |  <0.01  |   0.17     |
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
FMath      |    1.00    |    1.12     | <0.01  |  <0.01  |   0.11     |
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
TranTest   |    1.00    |    1.53     | <0.01  |   0.02  |   0.95     |
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
FMatrix    |    1.00    |    1.73     |  0.05  |   0.12  |   0.37     |
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
FTrace     |    1.00    |    1.21     | <0.01  |   0.02  |   0.98     |
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
BeachBall  |    1.00    |    0.95     | <0.01  |   0.02  |   0.32     |
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
CplxTest   |    1.00    |    1.18     |  0.04  |   0.07  |   0.25     |
-----------------------------------------------------------------------

        Descriptions of the tests can be found by downloading AIBB version
6.00 when it is available.  The descriptions and pseudo-code examples of the
test can be found in the Documentation directory of the AIBB 6.0 archive.

        The F40 shows admirable benchmarks in all categories except the
graphically oriented ones.  I attribute this to the higher bandwidth and
advanced capabilities of the AGA chipset.  I can not figure out why the
3000-25 outscored both the 4000-40 and the F40 in the savage test:  perhaps
some advantage to the 030-882 combination?

        From the data collected above, the F40 equipped A2000 seems to
exceed the performance of the A4000-40 in non-graphics tests by 12 to 143
percent.

        The fact that the F40 and the A3000 scored better on the memory test
is not a surprise, considering that I have heard of some type of problem in
the 4000 memory system.  I don't know the exact nature of the problem, but
it was discussed here on the net a while back if I remember correctly.

        Nic Wilson's SysInfo 3.11 agrees with the Dhrystone measurement
above, with a 11% faster F40 compared to AIBB's 12%.  It also rates it at
approximately 21+ MIPS and 5+ MFLOPS.  Take that rating (MIPS/MFLOPS) for
what it is worth. ;)

        To test C compilation speed, I wanted results that could be utilized
by the largest group of possible people interested.  I decided to compile
something that came on the SAS C 6.2 distribution (6.0 with 6.2 patch
applied).  I chose the "cback" example.  I tested the compile by double
clicking the Build icon for cback and stop-watching the compile.  It
actually creates two files, cback and schelp.  I tested with my 68000, my
F40 with caches and copyback off, and with caches and copyback on.  Here are
the results.

        68000, plain:           137 seconds
        68040, caches off:       26 seconds
        68040, caches on:        18 seconds

        I enjoy video and have done some playing around with 3D Rendering,
so I wanted to do a rendering benchmark.   Again, like compiling, I wanted to
do something that others could reproduce.  I have Caligari 2 and chose to
load an object that came with the package.  I chose gobot.obj.  Once the
object is loaded, I clicked the render button.  I ran it with the data cache
and copyback, and then without any caches.  I don't even think Caligari 2
supports just using the 68000; and in any case, I don't believe I have the
patience to wait as long as I think it would take.  Here are the results:

        without copyback and data cache:        87 seconds
        with    copyback and data cache:        43 seconds

This is by no means conclusive but provides you with some solid numbers that
you can compare to your own system.

        For you Video Toaster users, the F40 is fully compatible, and I hear
they are in regular use at NewTek (this was unconfirmed by NewTek -- have you
tried reaching them for the last week or so?).  According to Micro Times,
the F40 was the accelerator used in the Amiga 2000's that produced the
effects for Babylon 5.  Their setup consisted of a dozen 2000's (8 of which
did rendering) with F40s and 32 Meg of RAM.  They were networked by a Novell
network and used Oxxi's netware package for the Amiga.


DOCUMENTATION

        A small 30 page manual is provided covering the F40 and its
installation (hardware, software, and new RAM).  It also covers enabling and
disabling the 040 and how to use the cache controlling software.  There are
sections in the manual that deal with hardware and software considerations,
how the F40 works, a Question/Answer section (short), and technical
specifications.

LIKES:

        Speed!!!  What a screamer.
        Vendor  --  See vendor section.
        Reliability -- Rock SOLID for over a year.

DISLIKES

        One only really that I just discovered.  I put in the new Plug and
Go ROMS recently.  They fixed a minor annoyance that called for a double
boot at power up time.  When I went to pry the ROMs out of the sockets, I
found out that the sockets did not have the usual hard plastic bottoms.
There was a mylar-like film running between the pin sockets (see diagram
below):

          ____________<-Mylar      ooooooooooooooo
Side      |          |<-Pin          Mylar here     Top View
View      |          |  Sockets--->ooooooooooooooo


Forget using the old screw driver pry up for this task.  I had a chip puller
handy for Fat Agnus chips, and it happened to fit just fine... big sigh of
relief.  Putting the new chips in was challenging, but this fumble-fingered
hardware numbskull managed, so it wasn't too bad.

        Suggestions for the board:  on-board SCSI (preferably SCSI-II) would
be a welcome addition.  See the section at the end of the review about other
coming attractions.


COMPARISON WITH OTHER PRODUCTS

        I have used no other 040 accelerators, but I would heartily
recommend this product, without a shade of hesitancy, based on the
reliability of my current card and the vendor's excellent attitude toward
customer satisfaction (see vendor).


BUGS

        I experienced a few bugs on my older ROM version.  It had the
annoying property of having to be double booted at power-up time (now fixed
with Plug and Go).  Quarterback 5.0 would hang if copyback was on.  Talking
to CCS/New Horizons provided a fix, and the bug became less frequent, but
Plug and Go has corrected the problem totally.  My SAS 6.2 upgrade version of
CPR caused a similar type of problem that Quarterback did, and the Plug and
Go ROMS fixed that problem, too.  There may be some few bugs left (I have
read articles on the net about problems with Emplant), but RCS works quite
hard to maintain maximum compatibility.  They just recently set up an upgrade
BBS (see the phone number in the AUTHOR/COMPANY INFORMATION section, above),
so we can download new software as it becomes available.


VENDOR SUPPORT

        Superlative.  This is one area you can't fault RCS on.  At least I
can't.  I have called and talked with Sales and Technical Support ("TS") a
number of times.  I have talked to the same people for the last year or
longer.  TS is always helpful, and actively asks what types of things I am
doing.  Serge (TS) is knowledgable and quite forthcoming with information,
so much so that it is hard to get all my questions in sometimes.  Rischi
(Sales) is quite helpful and is free with information and careful not to
bad-mouth his competition.

        RCS seems very driven to satisfy the customer, and I am quite
satisfied with their product and their support.


WARRANTY

        One year, parts and labor.

CONCLUSION

        The F40 is an excellent product.  The quality of the board and the
responsiveness of RCS combine into a winning solution.  Two thumbs up here.


COMING ATTRACTIONS

        I have specs on their new 33 MHz version board.  The two things that
have changed radically are:

1.)  2.0 AmigaDOS or Higher is required (no more 1.3).
2.)  256 Meg of RAM on the board.  Another model may only support
     up to 128 Meg on the board.

        There was word of a Chip RAM accelerator, but nothing has come of it
yet.  It has apparently been shelved for now, but it is not dead.  The new
version of the board is being given top priority.  They also have a
networking card that currently works with the existing F40.

        They also promise some new and exciting stuff (that I wish I knew
more about) soon, like an extremely cost-effective 24-bit graphics card that
plugs into the F40.



"""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""


> Toaster 4000 GEnie Realtime Conference (RTC)
  ============================================


 OK ITS 10:20 :-)

 Here it goes!!!

 Let me tell you all I know about the New Tek Toaster and save the
questions for later.

 There is a new Toy from New Tek called the 4000 toaster... they
announced it this week at NAB.

 sheesh, denny, scrounging for attention     So, how's that NEW
BOOK of yours?

 The info here is directly from New Tek themselves! It is not
second hand reports so you can consider it all Fact :-) Including the
pricing... If anyone want's proof I can show the phone bill to Topeka :-)

 The 4000 Toaster is a card that will work in 2000, 3000 and the
4000. Although the special features are 4000 specific there is some
improvements to the software

 Why would Topeka want to see the bill?  :)

 as well so that regular owners can have some great things out of
this as well.

 I will mention the prices later write now here are the features
about the 4000 toaster. I will go more info on what it will lack in the no AGA
machine later.

 Welcome,  G.GILBERTSON 

 The 4000 toaster uses full AGA capabilities for a few things... 

 here are the improvements.... There are new effects that are
praticular to AGA mode. since I have not seen them I can not say if they are
great or not.. that will come in about a week when I get more feedback from
people at NAB.

 The addition software (TOASTER 3.0 now) has 9 banks of effects
now.

 Although they still did not include a program that will rearange
them or create new effects from you there are plenty of 3rd party programs to
do that. Cureently at least 3 that I know off.

 The additions of a cleaner Genlock with the ability to use the
processing features as well. So there is no more need to record from Workbench
as current toaster owners have to.

 Now you can use the Switcher to run the animations :-)

 Welcome,  C.GIESEKE 

 There is a whole new rewritten TOASTER CG.

 hi 'yal....

 The new CG is all mouse driven so that you can move and position
the letters directly by mouse.

 did they shoot the guy that wrote the old one?

 sorry :-)

 Most of the features are mouse driven with the ability to pull
down menues for more features.

 In other words they made it like Amiga software :-)
<(otis> be nice he was an ex pres of our San Diegoo Amiga Group

 Welcome,  M.SMALLS1 

 sorry otis :)  never could figger that CG out, tho

 hi, guys!

 You can also change fonts and adjust colors styoes and other
nieat things all by mouse now!

 whats the latest version of the TOaster? (prob asked
already sorry

 Wait till later sidewinder I am listing the features of it now!

 heh 'k.. 

 There is also COMPUGRAPHIC and POSTSCRIPT type 1 support directly
from CG.

 CG also autmoatically space letters properly for you (in DTP
world its Kerning)

 Ther are over 300 FONTS included with the software.

 You can load images into CG as background now and Toaster Paint
brushes as graphic elemnts... all directly now.

 wow

 You can draw semi transparent boxes in CG now so that you can
have the look like they do in the real pro CG's that cost over 200,000

 Thats the things for CG now.... Here is the not so good news.
 now==2010

 Toaster Paint is not rewritten yet... but expect to see an
upgrade for it with it totaly rewritten in a few months.

 Here is the best PART LIGHTWAVE!!!!

 Lightwave 3.0 Pro is the same Pro version that was announced in
the Amiga show with lens flares and other neat things which we can talk about
later. 

 Welcome,  S.LUTNES 

 It now supports directly Postscript and CG fonts directl

 Hi all :>

 AThe other things is that it does is tremendous speedup on the
4000 with code directly written for the 4000 (although that part is not
confirmed yet).

 howdy Syl! Yury's talking about 4000 Toaster

 There are new effects like lesn flares and out of fouceeffecs and
soft edge shadwos.

 Wow...

 The new interesting this is the modeler! Whichallows you tho draw
curves cut holes inobjects (boolean feature) and create text objects directly!

 The greatest part of it is this!!!!

 YOU CAN RECORD LIGHTWAVE ANIMATIONS IN REAL TIME FROM THE
SWITCHER!

 Ok close your mouths now :-)

 heh

 The playback of Lightwave anims is thorugh the 4000's AGA chips
in HAM8 at full resolution. Which gives you great looking animations

 The conversion is automatic for the animation creation from
Lightwave.

 Saw the thing at NAB

 Look great!

 IF you have 8 megs of memory I think it is RUMORED to play 3
seconds and with more memory (4000 takes up to 18 on motherboard) it plays 16
or so... but that is not confirmed yet.

 The best features is the price.

 it is lower then the 2000 toaster at $2395.

 You can use it in the 2000, 3000 and the 4000 but with only 6
banks of effects

 OH I forgot to mention... now there are 3 frame buffers instead
of 2 frame buffers int he 4000 version. 

 any upgrade policy?

 The upgrade for software only form Lightwave 2.0 to 3.09 is $799

 If you want to upgrade the board you can send it back and get the
new Toaster for $1199

 If you want to keep the old toaster send in disk 8 and get the
Toaster 4000 for $1799.

 NNot bad!

 If you send in disk 8 you are still eligeble for the software
upgrade!!!! so you can get both.

 ThATS IT From my end.... open for questions ... what do you all
think??

 OH SHIPPING should start middle to end of next month!

 WOwzers!

<(otis> sounds great

 Great!

 Hay did anyone see KIKI at the Toaster show?

 question:   NOW = ???  WHEN = ????

<(otis> weren't there originally some 'upgrades' for the hardware
side of the Toaster

 Yeah it does sound good! I could not get pricing on it myself (as
a dealer) since the pricing for dealeres is not set!

 Gary... read my last line!!!

<(otis> or unused features?

 Is there a new advertizing  blitz planned?

 Welcome,  S.ROLLINSON 

 Well I guess they did not use them... since the 4000 came out and
they can do alot better by redesigning the board.

 Is Toasterpaint HAM8 now? Any idea if this one will fit
in a single slot without blocking others?

 Rick I have no idea about that ... I am sure knowing New Tek
there is... but now they are cooperating with C= so you might want to look for
a joint add.

 hey, doesn't the A4000T have two video slots?

 Denny It goes in the video slot.... I think it will crowd the
other slot but not kill it!

 LW 3.0 is spose2b out by the end of May?

<(otis> yes

 Yep Chris 2 of them

 How many Toasters have been sold?

 you could have a Toaster AND an AGA display enhancer for superfast
animation!

 Gary Lightwave 3.0 will be included with the Toaster 3.0 upgrade
and the price... well you know the price now!

 Can toaster paint be used JUST with the HAM8...like
all the same features?

 Is Toasterpaint HAM8 now?

 Rick there are alot of 2.0 toaster sold... ALOT Of them but no
4000 toasters are available yet.

 sorry BK... need to hear it a few times...  been VAPORized
so much in the past hehe

 No Denny they say the upgrade to Toasterpaint will be in a few
months... did not finish it for this release!

 sheesh!

 How many toasters of ALL kinds were sold?

<(otis> May be off topic, but didn't I see on my local BBS that
Commodore was going to be doing some special pricing in conjunction with
NewTek?

 Sidewinder if you are using the 4000 you can use Toaster FX and
Image FX to have Image FX as a toaster paint program which is better then
Toaster Pain. At leastt the 2.0 toaster paint.

 Awsome!

 Rick a in the 100,000 range I am sure... no wonder Tim drives a
ferrari :-)

 big time!

 See this weeks news with a statement from C= (We get C=
statements directly for the news here so its the first place you see them)

 I have heard the figure of 60,000 toasters which at $2400
adds up to about $150,000,000.

 lots 'o bread..

 Rick the only people that can tell you about the toaster is New
Tek themselves.

 takes money to make money!

 Rick I am talking bout sales!

 Will there be a TOaster version for the
1200..(holdingbreath)

 Are there any plans for a PAL version of the toaster?

 the bottom line is to market,market!

 GOT HERE LATE. Can someone list the what, when, how much of the
4ooo toaster for me. thanks.

 Rick no so far there are no releases or plans about PAL version.

 Welcome,  FRED.M 

 hello!

 S.ROLLINSON I already went through it all... It will be in the
library tomorow if you wnat to read the specifics on it.

 I have no more strenght to type in in again now :-)

 heh....

 Ok, thanks, I'll get it tomorrow.

 So theres no A1200 support Yuri??

 Sidewinder there will be no A1200 support for the Toaster :-)

 is the 4000 toaster a new board or just physically altered to fit?  I
assume the software has been upgraded?
Message sent to Job 11 

 time to up the grade.. :)

 Fred its a new board.... with alot of new features and Toaster
3.0 software to take special use of the AGA chipset.

        _______________________________________________________________
       |                                                               |
       |  Reprinted with permission from the *StarShip* on GEnie.      |
       |  Joining GEnie is easy!   Use half duplex at 300/1200/2400    |
       |  baud.  Dial 1-800-638-8369 (Canada 1-800-387-8330).  Type    |
       |  HHH at CONNECT.  At the U#= prompt, type AMIGA and press     |
       |  Return.                                                      |
       |_______________________________________________________________|
        ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~



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> Usenet Review:  Pinball Fantasies
  =================================
  By Dan Barrett
  (barrett@cs.umass.edu)


PRODUCT NAME

        Pinball Fantasies


BRIEF DESCRIPTION

        This Amiga game is a pinball machine simulator.  It is the sequel
to Pinball Dreams, which I have not played.


AUTHOR/COMPANY INFORMATION

        Name:           Digital Illusions
                        Distributed by 21st Century Entertainment, Ltd.

        US Address:     21st Century Entertainment, Inc.
                        PO Box 415
                        Webster, NY  14580
                        USA

        UK Address:     21st Century Entertainment, Ltd.
                        568 Milton Pak
                        Abingdon

        E-mail:         andreas@gilbert.adsp.sub.org (Andreas Axelsson)


LIST PRICE

        $49.95 (US).  I paid $35.00 at a dealer, and I've seen it for as low
as $26.00 in mailorder ads.  (My dealer let me try out the game on an A3000T
before buying it, so it was worth paying his higher price.)

        A freely distributable demo version is available on ftp sites like
amiga.physik.unizh.ch and its mirrors (/pub/aminet/game/demo/pin_fan.lzh).


SPECIAL HARDWARE AND SOFTWARE REQUIREMENTS

        HARDWARE

                If you use the hard disk installable version (see COPY
                PROTECTION, below), you need 4 MB of free hard disk space.

                The documentation does not list any hardware requirements
                nor compatibility information.  However, it does NOT run
                correctly on my friend's Amiga 4000.  (See BUGS, below.)  I
                recommend that users with 68040's or A1200's try out this
                game before buying it.

        SOFTWARE

                The documentation does not list any software requirements
                nor compatibility information.


COPY PROTECTION

        Disk-based copy protection, requiring you to boot on the master
disk.  Scores are saved on the table disks.  I hate copy protection, so
this is annoying.

        A hard-drive-installable version is available from the company for
an additional $10.00 (US) and the return of all three Pinball Fantasies
disks.  This version takes over the machine but returns you to AmigaDOS when
you're finished playing.  It also has "look up the word in the manual" copy
protection.


MACHINE USED FOR TESTING

        Amiga 3000T, 2 MB Chip RAM, 8 MB Fast RAM, Quantum 210MB hard drive.
Kickstart 2.04, Workbench 2.1.


REVIEW

        About 12 years ago, when I was on vacation with my family, I
discovered a pinball video game in our hotel lobby.  This monochrome game
used solid rectangles for bumpers and a tiny square (yes, a square) for the
ball.  The ball moved at a constant speed, and the only sound it made was a
pathetic "bloop."  It was closer to "Pong" than pinball, really, but much
less fun than Pong.  My Dad and I played a few games and then decided that
computer pinball was a stupid idea.  Only the real thing could be fun.

        12 years later, Dad and I were proved wrong.  VERY wrong.

        Pinball Fantasies (PBF) is a pinball machine simulator.  I had
serious doubts about this game, but then I made the "mistake" of trying it
out at my local Amiga dealer.  I say "mistake" because now I am TOTALLY
addicted to the BEST arcade game I have played since Arkanoid!!

        The game comes on three floppy disks:  one master game disk, and two
"table" disks, each containing two different pinball machines.  The four
available tables are Partyland (a circus theme), Speed Devils (racing cars
theme), Billion Dollar Gameshow (TV game show theme), and Stones 'n' Bones
(haunted house theme).  Each has different graphics, music, sound effects,
and scoring.  Rumor has it that new table discs will be released by the
company.  As I played each table for the first time, I had the same
thought:  "The previous table was more fun than this one."  However, after a
few games on the new table, I changed my mind!  All of the tables are fun in
different ways.  At first, I was disappointed that the tables are not very
large, but I was too hasty -- there is plenty to do on each table.
(Including at least one secret entrance!)

        To play the game, you must boot on the master disk.  A short
introduction follows, which cannot be skipped.  After about 1 minute (on my
68030), you are asked to insert a table disk.  About 30 seconds later, you
may choose between the two tables on the disk by pressing F1 or F2.  30
seconds later, you are ready to play.  Press F1 through F8 to start a game
with 1-8 players.  Flippers are controlled by the left/right SHIFT, ALT, and
AMIGA keys which all function identically.  Shooting the ball is done either
with the "down arrow" key or the mouse, and the table may be bumped by
pressing the space bar.  (Yes, if you press the space bar too often, you
will "tilt" the machine and lose your current ball.)

        The screen is split into two parts.  At the top, there is a display
which shows your score and various messages.  This display simulates a
2-dimensional grid of "lightbulbs" like the scoreboard at a baseball game,
and it is used very effectively both during gameplay and between games.
Below that, and taking up most of the screen, is the pinball machine itself.
The whole table cannot fit on the screen, so it scrolls vertically while you
play, always keeping the ball in view.  The scrolling is VERY smooth and
fast.

        Gameplay is dynamic and fun.  Unlike that awful video game I played
12 years ago, PBF's ball moves naturally at different speeds depending on
what it hits.  The flipper response is VERY realistic, and I have no trouble
at all using the flippers to delay and stop the ball.  Also, the ball falls
down chutes and bounces of bumpers so naturally that it's easy to forget
you are playing a computer game.

        I like the music and sound effects very much; in particular, the
music matches the "theme" of each table very effectively.  For example, on
"Speed Devils", some of the "instruments" are automobile sounds (ignition,
motor, crashing) used musically.  The sound effects and music change
appropriately and add to the excitement of the game.  Some sounds are
realistic, like the the ball being queued up at the beginning, and others
are intentionally unrealistic.  The music may be toggled on and off, but
sound effects stay on all the time.  The only sound missing from the game is
the rolling of the ball.  But this is understandable since the sound would
have to be "looped" (repeated) to be continuous and would probably sound
artificial.

        In some ways, PBF is "larger than life," having features I have not
seen on real pinball machines, and this makes the play even more exciting.
First of all, the scoring is set higher than on the real pinball machines I
have used.  There's something exhilarating about scoring 40 million
points!!  Second, the "lightbulb" display reminds you of bonuses at
appropriate times.  For example, if you hit a particular target 10 times,
you get an extra ball; so each time you hit it, PBF displays "4 MORE TIMES
FOR EXTRA BALL" or a similar message.  Another example (in "Party Time") is
a target that must be hit after knocking down 3 ducks.  If you hit the
target too early, the display flashes, "HIT SOME DUCKS FIRST."  Cute and
useful.  (Disclaimer:  maybe nowadays, real pinball machines do this too.
I don't know.  It's been a few years since I played pinball.)

        In contrast, PBF is also slightly easier than real pinball in some
ways.  First, it's easier to prevent the ball from slipping between your
flippers; there is usually some way to hit it.  Second, there is a little
bit less randomness in the ball's path (but only a *little*).  If you hit
the ball into a loop-the-loop, you know that it's not going to fall into the
gutter afterwards.  However, this does NOT detract from the game at all, and
in fact I like the predictability sometimes.


DOCUMENTATION

        The game comes with a small, 7-page manual with playing instructions
and descriptions of the different tables and their scoring.  It is adequate
but not fancy.  PBF is so easy to use that you don't need to read the manual
before playing, thanks to the informative display and the natural keystrokes
(SHIFT=flipper, etc.).

        However, if you do read the manual, you will discover how complex
the game really can be!  For example, in "Stones 'n Bones," you can score
5,000,000 points if you "shoot the CLEAR ramp to the ROLL-OVERS, drop down
to the LEFT FLIPPER and hit the SCREAMS ramp and the far LEFT ramp."  Once
you are familiar with the many bonuses you can get, the game becomes even
more fun.

        Some the terminology in the manual is not fully explained.  In the
previous 5,000,000-point example, the manual doesn't tell you what the
"ROLL-OVERS" is!  (Are?)  But for the most part, it's understandable with a
little study.


LIKES AND DISLIKES

        My main like is the amazing realism of the game.  More than once --
and I am not making this up -- I have found myself shaking the keyboard in
an attempt to tilt the machine, or *banging* the SHIFT keys to hit the ball
harder.  My mind gets swept away by the game, and my body takes over.  All
I can say is:  I am IMPRESSED!!

        I have a few minor dislikes.  The first few times I played, the
vertical scrolling sometimes made me feel dizzy.  It doesn't bother me
any more, though.  Some people will probably not be able to play this game
for a prolonged period.  Second, the messages in the "lightbulb" display
sometimes scroll by too quickly for me to see them.  If I lift my eyes from
the table to watch the messages when they appear, I can't watch the ball.

        My only major dislike is the copy protection.  I'm glad they offer a
hard disk installable version, though I think asking an additional $10 for
it is a ripoff.  I should not have to pay extra money to replace missing
functionality.

        My last dislike is that the manuals says to "disconnect all external
hardware from the computer except the mouse and a second disk drive..."
before playing the game.  This is a completely ridiculous and unrealistic
requirement for a game.  These peripherals should not matter to a
well-written program.  Fortunately, the game runs fine on my system.

        One suggestion is that the rolling ball should make some kind of
sound, if such a thing can be done effectively.  When the music is turned
off, the ball is unnaturally silent.


COMPARISON TO OTHER SIMILAR PRODUCTS

        I have not used any similar products, except that awful video game
12 years ago. :-)


BUGS

        The program crashed twice:  both times while I was playing table #2,
"Speed Devils."  After a ball finished, a pair of large numbers got written
in the "lightbulb display", one overlapping the other, and the program hung.

        The program does not run properly on the Amiga 4000.  It will not
even boot unless you use a program to remap Kickstart, such as ReloKick.  And
after it boots, the game is unplayable because it runs much too fast.


VENDOR SUPPORT

        I corresponded by e-mail with the programmer of the game, Andreas
Axelsson, to ask about the crashing problem.  He acknowledged the bugs and
said he was looking for them, but said that "there will probably not be a new
master [disk released], but maybe a 1200 version...."

        The manual states:  "Our policy is one of constant improvement."
Well, if this is true, I sure hope that a bugfixed version of PBF will be
made available to registered owners!!


WARRANTY

        None mentioned in the documentation.


CONCLUSIONS

        I have complained a little bit, but don't be fooled:  Pinball
Fantasies is a FABULOUS game and an amazingly realistic pinball simulation.
It has the makings of a real classic:  simple concept, easy to use, and
highly addictive.  The only bad points are the copy protection and that it
does not run properly on the A4000.  I recommend this game without
hesitation to all Amiga users who have extra time on their hands. :-)


COPYRIGHT NOTICE

          Copyright 1993 Daniel J. Barrett.  All rights reserved.
                        Reprinted with permission.



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> Warez Out There
  ===============
  By Tom Mulcahy


File:           AIBB v6.0
Author:         LaMonte Koop
Where to find:  GEnie, Amiga RT, file #19192
                Bix:  AIBB_60.lha


Excerpt from manual...


                                A.I.B.B.
                    Amiga Intuition Based Benchmarks
                       Program Release Version 6.0
                    Copyright 1991-1993 LaMonte Koop

                       Version Change Information


Version series' 4.x-6.x of AIBB is a complete re-write from the original
code used for the previous versions 1-3.  Being that this is the case, it
is quite important that the documentation be read thoroughly in order
to completely understand all aspects of the program performance.  The
changes to this version series are detailed below.

Changes to version 6.0:

AIBB has had its graphics-based tests completely re-written.
The user is now allowed to select the screen mode to be used by
AIBB when performing such tests via the "Set Gfx Test Mode" option
under the "Test Options" menu.  This is done via the ASL.LIBRARY
screenmode requester, and thus this option is not available unless
the host system is using V38 of ASL or greater (V38 is found with
the AmigaOS 2.1 enhancement).

The default screen mode AIBB uses for its graphics tests is
a high-resolution ( 640x200 ) 3 bitplane ( 8 color ) setup.  When
a new screen mode is selected for the tests, AIBB will check this
against the modes used in the comparison systems and will warn the
user if the new mode differs in equivalence, as it is necessary to
be aware of this so that the comparisons can then be weighted
accordingly. ( eg, if you run a test in a low-res 1 bitplane mode,
it will almost assuredly perform faster than in a high-res 4
bitplane mode, so this has to be taken into account when looking at
the results ).

This new option was provided for allowing the comparison of
different graphics modes on the systems used.  It can also be used
to examine the performance of some of the new graphics boards being
introduced for the Amiga. ( for example, one can see at which mode
the board ends up being slower for a given test than the default
mode used for the comparison systems ).

AIBB does save the screen mode data within its load module, so
that this information is available when a new module is loaded.
Again, when a module is loaded, checks are made against the screen
modes in use by the other loaded systems, and the host system, to
warn the user if differing graphics modes were used.

In addition to these changes, another item under the "Test
Options" menu allows the user to browse through the graphics modes
used by the comparison systems, as well as that in use by the host
system.

     *  Please note: All of these changes have meant that AIBB's load
        module and preferences file format have changed.

The ability to change AIBB's primary screen colors has been
added via the use of a color requester.  Color selections are
saved to AIBB's preferences file when the "Save Configuration"
menu item is selected in AIBB's "General" menu area.  This was
added upon complaints from monochrome monitor users who were
having trouble seeing parts of AIBB's display because two or
more colors would map to the same grey shades.

AIBB's help mode requesters have been removed to make room for
the changes to its graphics tests.  They were giving problems due
to a compiler bug (bad code generation) in any case, and the entire
system needs to be re-worked before being implemented again
(space allowing).  This also freed up a good deal of space for
other functions within AIBB, and unless it becomes a real problem
this may not be re-implemented...at least not in the form it has
taken thus far.

AIBB will no longer show 2 gadgets on a requester when only one
option is available.  This has been changed as it was reported to
be confusing to some users when two gadgets would appear, though
they had the same text/action associated with them.

Under 1.3 or earlier of AmigaOS, AIBB would sometimes call up
an Alert indicating a lack of CHIP memory for a particular
operation when in fact there was no problem.  This was due to a bug
in the AmigaOS Request() function under 1.3 and below.  This
function would not always give the proper return value, and would
make AIBB believe an error occured when it in fact hadn't.  A
workaround is in effect now for 1.3 and below within AIBB, by
looking at window->FirstRequest instead of relying on the return
value from Request() to indicate success.

AIBB's TGTest has been changed again to one which carries its
measure in terms of characters/second output to the screen.  The
previous use of variously sized windows to hold the output has been
removed due to various testing which showed it to have a minimal
value in the test itself.

A new entry in AIBB's memory node information reporting has
been added.  AIBB will now report the a relative "Bus latency
factor" for all FAST RAM nodes.  This figure represents the latency
between a memory cycle, and when another cycle can be performed.
Lower ratings indicate better response times for a particular
memory node, with the unattainable goal of 0.0 indicating that no
latency occured at all.  Basically, this gives information as to
the relative efficiency of various memory nodes.  (eg, one with a
rating of 5.0 would be more efficient, and hence faster than one
with a rating of 7.0.).  Note that this can only be used as a
valid comparison across systems if other factors such as processor
type, clockspeed, and bus width are also taken into account.  This
figure is most useful in comparing two different memory regions on
similar systems, such as two memory boards on a 68030 based system
against each other for relative efficiency.

Two new tests have been added to AIBB's lineup.  The first,
"EllipseTest" is a simple test of one of the Amiga's more complex
drawing functions, DrawEllipse().  A series of elliptical shapes
is drawn, with the function timed for speed comparisons.  The
second test, known as LineTest, tests the Amiga's speed at various
line drawing jobs.  This test reports its results in terms of
Lines Drawn per Second.

File requester capability has been added to the Load Module
Preferences requester as per recommendation by various people.
The gadgets marked "FR" next to each string input gadget will
bring up a file requester for that particular entry.  This
alleviates the need to type in path/file names for selecting
default modules to load up when AIBB is initialized.

A bug with AIBB's low memory situation handling has been fixed.
Previously, it was possible for AIBB to crash in a low memory
situation when it couldn't open a screen or window.  This has been
corrected in this version and AIBB should now properly handle these
events.

Changes have been made to AIBB's FPU clock rate evaluation.
Under previous versions, low results could be reported for the FPU
clock rate when the host system was running a high-clocked FPU
(~50 MHz) with a moderate to low-clocked CPU (~16 MHz).  This
showed up on the A1200 operating with external expansion boards
equipped with high-speed FPUs.  The changes made here attempt to
smooth out this difference and give more accurate results for FPU
clock rate on these systems.

AIBB now uses gadgets rather than menu items for CPU cache
control.  The gadgets are located on AIBB's main screen in the
cache status indicator area.

Moving from AIBB's main screen to its system information
display is now accomplished by clicking on the appropriate
gadget near the comparison information area corresponding to the
machine information is desired on.  Previously, AIBB used a
menu arrangement under the "Systems" menu to move to this
display, and this was complained about as being "clumsy" to
operate.  The new gadgets are located under the "System Comparison
Information" section of the main screen, and are set up as the
row headers for that area.

AIBB now encorporates gadgets rather than menu items for
changing code types used in tests and evaluations.  Previously,
menu items under the menu "Test Options" were used to change the
test code types for both the host system and comparison machines.
This turned out to be more work for the user than necessary, and
hence the gadget approach was adopted.  The gadgets are located
next to the evaluation results on the main screen, and allow for
cycling through the various CPU/FPU code types available for a
given system.

A bug with AIBB's MMU table parsing mechanism has been fixed.
AIBB normally will parse any active MMU tables in order to find the
physical location of various system objects.  However, a bug was
discovered in how AIBB parses tables utilizing long (64 bit) table
descriptors.  This was originally thought to be fixed some time
ago, but recently it became obvious this was still in error.  This
is now fixed and should properly find physical memory locations
under these MMU setups as well as others.

AIBB was inadvertantly making a 2.0+ only OS call within its
procedures to close a log file being written to.  This could lead to
a failure and crash on systems runing 1.3 or earlier versions of
AmigaOS.  This has been corrected as of this version.



File:           Frequently Asked Amiga Questions
Author:         David Tibeiro
Where to find:  Bix:  afaq_3776.lha
Status:         Unknown


This file is a text file in Amiga Guide format of frequently asked Amiga
questions.  It's a fairly comprehensive text explaining things such as
the history of the Amiga line, it's future, current models, the multitude 
of advantages to using an Amiga etc,.  This would be good to show to
POTential Amiga users!  Not all of the functions seem to function due to
some null port: error??? among other things...  but most of the text is
very readable.  



File:    Promoter
Author:  Kurt Haenen
Where to find:  Bix:  Promoter.lha
Status:  Shareware


-Latest mode promotion utility

Excerpt from manual...

So, what can the Promotor do for you ?  Poeple using the AGA chipset and
kickstart  3.0  will probably have notice the Mode Promotion toggle in the
IControl  preferences.   This  switch  should  allow  a  sort  of software
de-interlacing by changing the screenmode for certain screens.  Since, 3.0
came  out,  people  have  been complaining that the Mode Promotion feature
wasn't  good  enough.   A  lot  of screens don't get promoted and the user
can't indicate what screenmode the system should use for the promotion.

So ...  Here is the real Mode Promotion utility ...  The Promotor allows
you  to  promote  screens to any mode you wish.  You can give instructions
for  specific  screens, give general promotion rules, promote depending on
the mode requested by the program, or depending on the task requesting the
screen, the title of the screen or the publicscreen name for the requested
screen.   And  you  can  do  more than simply change the mode ...  You can
change  the DriPens for the screens, the number of colors in the ColorMap,
and a lot more (check out the tags for OpenScreenTags, most of them can be
changed  using the Promotor).  I guess this will have you drooling by now,
so this introduction has achieved the right effect ...



File:           UPD130.lha
Author:         Jonas Peterson
Status:         Shareware
Where to find:  Bix:     UPD130.lha


-Add sound to your Workbench

Excerpt from manual...



		The minimal player daemon - upd  Release 1.30
		=============================================

   © 1991-1993 Jonas Petersson & Absolut Software (aka Sirius Soft)


Introduction:
=============

Wouldn't it be nice to have a process hanging around to play any
sound file for you on demand instead of you having to do all this
mucking about with audio.device etc? But it really has to be small
and it HAS to be able to play my very large samples anytime...
I must be able to call it simply from anywhere - even from scripts!

Tricky, but it can be done.

As a feature you can register you favourite sounds in a configuration
file and well behaved programs will use the ones you like right now.
It also has Arexx support - to be truely honest, that the ONLY way to
use it... As of 1.01, there is also a fade option.

Actually, "minimal" is not quite true anymore as speech is available
starting 1.20... As a spin-off of this you also get a "say" program
that can play phonemes.

1.30 includes a way to preload the samples from disk.

Current version works rather well along the way I intended.



File:           Virus Checker v6.25
Author:         John Veldthuis
Where to find:  Bix:    vchk6p25.lha
Status:         Shareware

-update to the well known anti-virus program Virus Checker

Excerpt from manual...


************************************************************************

                        Virus_Checker Documentation (6.25)

                             by John Veldthuis
                      Member of SHI Anti Virus Group 

************************************************************************
                      Virus_Checker Version Notes                      
************************************************************************


6.21 Released 12 February 1993
     Fixed IGNOREBB not comming up checked when given on command line.
     Added the Unicorn, Adam Brierly BB viruses and added DStructure and
     Starlight file viruses
6.22 Released 14 Febuary 1993
     Added Timer file virus and fixed a serious loop bug. Accidently put
     the wrong label in in one of the memory checks. As a result and
     endless loop at priority 19 which made it seem the machine had locked
     up. Sorry guys.
6.23 Released 20 March 1993
     Added code to check crunched files. Uses Decrunch.library to do this
     and it must be in libs:
     Added Amiga Knight File virus, and Fake SnoopDos1.6 (a bbs backdoor)
6.24 Released 5 April 1993
     Altered file reading code so that file is read only once unless size
     changes between checks of Link/File viruses.
     Altered Interface to support new options. Redid most of support
     routines for GadTools gadgets. Some done illegally under WB3.0.
     Found and corrected a long standing memory loss bug.
     Check gadget now works properly under WB3.0
6.25 Released 19 April 1993
     Added QRLD Link virus and corrected a bug in link virus scanning code
     Altered way Virus_Checker handles input when it is already running.
     You can now use Virus_Checker quit (WB20) -q (1.3) to stop a running
     VC. Also it now longers sends messages to itself but uses another
     method to communicate to itself.
     Changed detection of Menems revenge in memory, was picking up replex
     as a virus.
     No longer asks if you wish to kill it but just pops the window open.



File:           Yak14a.lha
Author:         Martin W. Scott
Where to find:  Bix:    Yak14a.lha
Status:         Shareware


-update to Yak(Yet Another Kommodity)...  a screen blanker, mouse blanker
screen to front commodity.

Excerpt from readme...

                             Yak Version 1.4a
                   Copyright 1992, 1993, Martin W. Scott
                            Released April 1993

This  is  a  small maintenance release of Yak, with AutoThresh code removed
due  to  incompatibilities with other commodities, the RMB Activate feature
having been added in its place, and some mouse-blanking enhancements.

If  you're  currently using version 1.3, a brief read of the history should
suffice.   Users  of  earlier versions should review all documentation, and
also  run the Convert program to change their 1.1/1.2 yak.config files into
the  1.3  yak.prefs  file  (the  format  of  this  hasn't  changed in 1.4).
First-time  users should at least scan the documentation, so they know what
to expect, and what not to.

French  users  have  their  own  documentation,  kindly  translated by GaŽl
Marziou.   The  translation  covers  version  1.3e,  not 1.4a, so check the
history  below  to  find  out what's new/changed/fixed.  There is as yet no
French version of Yak.

The changes since the last release are:

 v1.4a	* Added RMB Activate toggle - window under mouse is activated when
	  right mouse button pressed.

	* New improved mouse-blanking: Method 'Sprites' is same as before,
          but method 'Copper' has been completely rewritten; it still only
          blanks sprite 0, but is now compatible with LacePointer.

	- Completely removed AutoThresh code due to compatibility problems
	  but RMB Activate takes over the main usefulness of AutoThresh
	  anyway (i.e. getting the correct menus up).

	- Now compiled with SAS/C 6.2 (see Compiling above). 


If  you  have any problems, get in touch (addresses in main documentation).
Thanks to those who notified me of problems, and tested the fixes.

-Martin (mws@castle.ed.ac.uk)



***************************************************************************


> NVN WANTS YOU! STR InfoFile       Another Network Supports Amiga!
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                     ================================



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***************************************************************************


> Usenet Review:  Golden Image Cordless Mouse
  ===========================================
  By David Gilbert
  (dgilbert@jaywon.pci.on.ca)


PRODUCT NAME

        GoldenIMAGE cordless 4-button mouse.


BRIEF DESCRIPTION

        The Golden Image remote mouse is a cordless, battery-operated mouse
that uses infra-red beams to control the Amiga (like a TV or VCR remote
control does).  It consists of two parts: the hand-held mouse with 4
buttons, and the receiver which attaches to the Amiga's mouse port.

        This product has been discontinued due to "lack of market
interest."  You may still be able to buy one used (as I did).  They do sell
other products for the Amiga --- for instance, a regular mouse.


AUTHOR/COMPANY INFORMATION

        Name:           GoldenIMAGE Technology Corp
        Address:        3578 E. Enterprise Drive
                        Anaheim, CA 92807
                        USA

        Telephone:      (800) 327-4482
                        (714) 630-7765


LIST PRICE

        Since the mouse is discontinued, I have no pricing information.  I
did not buy the mouse by itself, but rather got it as part of a computer
package.  The company didn't have price information either.


SPECIAL HARDWARE AND SOFTWARE REQUIREMENTS

        None.


MACHINE USED FOR TESTING


        (Brag time ;)...

        -       A500 with 1 MB Chip RAM
        -       Vxl 030 68030 accelerator with 8 MB 32-bit RAM
        -       2.04 ROM & WorkBench
        -       GVP Series II SCSI with Quantum 105Q, 44 MB Bernoulli, and
                155 MB Wren III drives
        -       SupraFax V.32bis modem
        -       DeskJet 500 printer
        -       Two 200-watt power supplies


WHAT'S A REMOTE MOUSE?

        Glad you asked.  Think of your VCR (or TV) remote.  It works by
emitting a signal with an infra-red LED.  A remote mouse works similarly.
Like a VCR remote, you generally have to point the LED towards the device
being controlled. However, if you angle your arm just right and make a very
positive and suggestive motion with your hand, it is sometimes possible to
bounce the beam off a sheet of glass.

        The mouse itself requires 2 "AAA" batteries.  I would strongly
recommend rechargables (they last about a week, so I estimate that
non-rechargables would last about 1 month, though I have not tested this).
It has four buttons -- three on the top, and one for the thumb -- and looks
similar to the standard Amiga mouse, but slightly rounder.

        The receiver is much smaller, and draws its power from the
computer.  It has a red face containing an LED which flashes when it
receives data from the remote mouse.  This helps you verify that the mouse
is indeed functioning and doesn't have dead batteries.


WHY A REMOTE MOUSE?

        Glad you asked.  To be honest, I don't know.  I would suppose if you
also had a remote keyboard, you could sit about ten feet away from your
computer in the comfort of an easy chair.  However, you might not be able to
see your monitor so....  you'd just have to combine that with a Sony
Multi-Sync projection TV --- you know the kind that syncs to everything ---
it's just great to whip out your IRIS 480 VGX and play "flight" to show
those Super-NES weenies what real flight simulation looks like, but I
digress....  It just might make a really comfortable work environment.

        To be truthful, I have always wanted a 3-button mouse for my Amiga,
so a 4-button mouse was impossible to pass up.  I also often want to move my
mouse out of the way to eat supper, and this mouse does not have a cord to
get in the way.  The non-existent cord also doesn't get in the way of mouse
movements.

        To those who have never experienced a three button mouse --- or even
worse, are stuck on a Mac with a ONE button mouse (even the A/UX machines
sell with one-button mice) --- three button mice are a real treat.  On your
ordinary Amiga mouse, you have one button for selection and one button for
menus (generally).  A third button (the middle one) is useful in many ways.
It basically provides you with another selection button for some other type
of selection.

        Many Amiga applications allow the user to define a use for a middle
button.  In my experience, it is very often used as a "paste" button.  In
Emacs on the Amiga, the middle button (by default) will paste the top of the
kill ring (like a cut/paste operation in other products) at the current
mouse position.

        Another reason to get this mouse was that my original mouse also
hadn't been replaced since I bought my computer --- and it was getting a
little bit tired.


DRAWBACKS

        Did you think this review would be all positive?  Of course not.
There are a few drawbacks.  The first two major ones have already been
mentioned.  One, it requires batteries.  It's not as bad as I expected with
batteries; I figured they'd last only 1 day or so.  But you have to remember
to keep them supplied or recharged.  It may be prudent to keep your
original, corded mouse around.

        The mouse also only works in straight lines from the receiver.  I
have found that it will work from 10 feet away (the length of my room), but
I have not tested it to any great extent from that position.  I have found,
however, that having the mouse too close to the receiver can yield
unexpected results.  These can include large mouse jumps when the buttons
are pressed, which I think is due to an error in reception.  To get around
this problem, I recommend that the receiver be placed back a foot or so from
the mouse pad.  On some peoples desks this may not be possible (remember the
straight line thing. ;)

        One thing that will strike the first time user if they have AmigaDOS
2.04 (or they have some similar program under 1.3) is the use of the mouse
under acceleration.  Without acceleration, the mouse pointer movement is
predictable even if it does fall a bit behind the movement of the mouse.
The mouse seems to have a bandwidth" problem.  If you move the mouse fast
enough, it cannot transmit the signal fast enough, so it catches up after
you stop.

        If you are using the acceleration feature of the 2.04 preferences or
are using some other accelerator, you will find it to be very unpredictable
at first.  After a day or two, I became pretty good at managing the mouse
with acceleration.  It's not entirely intuitive, but you get used to it like
anything else.  I use a lot of different mice... so I might adapt faster
than you do.

        Lastly, there is no indication of battery life.  Your cue to replace
batteries is simply erratic mouse movement.  In my experience, this can
either tend to do nothing, zip across the screen at the slightest movement,
or perform the auto-shutoff far too often.

        Although I have recommended rechargable batteries, I must make an
observation.  It does seem that (sometimes) when the mouse has not had much
action, the batteries are not "ready."  If the mouse is moved vigorously
for a few moments, it regains its ability.  The symptom I am describing
here is that the first couple of mouse movements might not be right
sometimes."


WHY FOUR BUTTONS?

        I'm glad you finally asked.  I have a 4-button mouse for my
workstation (at work), but I have no idea of the status of 4-button support
on the Amiga.  I do know that the Amiga supports at least three buttons.
The thumb button functions as an ON button (the mouse does the auto-shutdown
thing after about 10 minutes), but does not seem to create an input event
for the Amiga.  The middle button does create an input event, and I have
verified that it works with Emacs as described above.


COMPATIBILITY

        The mouse can be unpredictable with mouse acceleration, but it is
otherwise compatible with the Amiga mouse.  It has approximately the same
resolution --- which is subjective because I have neither the specs for the
Amiga mouse nor the GoldenIMAGE mouse.

        I have tested the mouse with some games but not too many, as my
machine never goes down (touch wood).  Any game that uses the input.device
should work.  I wonder, however, if the behavior when the mouse is moving
fast (the bandwidth problem, above) could affect the way that some games
play.  Again, ticks/distance traveled is as correct as you could expect a
mouse to be, but sometimes the timing (or velocity) of your mouse movements
is not true.


SUPPORT

        The company itself seems to be rather good for support.  Even though
I was not the original purchaser, they had no problem with sending me a
manual for free.  Good support is sometime hard to find... I may actively
look for other bits of hardware they sell.

OVERALL RECOMMENDATION

        I would not recommend spending a lot of money on this device.  This
could be why it's out of production.  It is credible and usable --- but
then, I didn't pay for it ;).  Personally, I use it because it's a three
button mouse.  I would recommend it to people with similar needs.  Possibly
playing a game based solely on the mouse (such as "Lemmings") while sitting
away from the computer is another reason.

        In all practicality, I cannot recommend the mouse for general use
because of the large number of flaws I found with it.


COPYRIGHT/DISCLAIMER

        This article is Copyright (c) 1993 by David Gilbert.  Permission to
distribute this article as part of "Amiga Report Online Magazine" has
been granted.  Any commercial use/duplication requires the written
consent of the author.  No warranty is expressed or implied in the
above text, including, but not limited to fitness of the product for a
specific purpose.  Internal consumption of computer peripherals is not
recommended.



"""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""


> A Play on Star Trek  STR Humor File
  ===================================
  Author Unknown 


                              -< Star Trek >-
                        Alien: The Next Generation
 
                         ------------------------
Scene 1: Some planet deep in the Federation that no one has been to. Riker,
         Data, and Geordi are checking out the flora.
 
   Riker:     What do you make of it, Data?
   Data:      It appears to be a large pod, but there are no roots. I am
              not sure what it is. I think we would be better to examine
              it in a lab.
   Geordi:    Data's right. There's movement inside, but i can't see it.
   Riker:     Of course not. You're blind. Transporter room, three to beam up.
 
 Riker, Data, and Geordi dematerialize with the pod in Data's hands.
 
                         ------------------------
Scene 2: Biology lab. Riker, Picard, Data, Dr. Crusher, and Wesley are
         examining the pod.
 
   Wesley:    Let me see! I want to see!
   Picard:    Shut up Wesley! Data, what do you make of it?
   Data:      It appears to be dormant at this time, Captain. I am not quite
              certain whether it is harmful or not.
   Picard:    Hmmmm. You mean it could be dangerous.
   Data:      I believe that is what I said.
   Wesley:    Let me see! I want to see! Why are adults always so big?
   Picard:    Shut up, Wesley!
   Riker:     It's my fault, Captain. I let him have ice cream for desert. It
              won't happen again.
   
 Riker backhands Wesley.
 
   Picard:    See that it doesn't.  Picard to bridge.
   Worf:      Worf here captain.
   Picard:    Worf, is the decontamination circuitry working on the
              transporter?
   Worf:      No sir. I believe an engineer is working on the
              transporter.
              Apparently the decontamination circuitry is inoperative. Do you
              want them to fix it?
   Picard:    Oh. Oh, yes, of course. Make it so.  I think it
              would be best if we isolated the pod. I think we should leave
              the lab until we know what we are dealing with.
 
 Everyone turns to leave except Wesley, who moves closer.
 
   Wesley:    Let me see!
   Picard:    Shut up Wesley!
 
 The pod opens and a strange alien creature attacks. It attaches itself to
 Wesley's face and coils its thickly muscled tail around Wesley's neck.
 
   Wesley:    Urghhhhh! Gluck! Guhhhhhhhhhhgghhh!
   Picard:    Thank you.
   Crusher:   Oh my god! It's got my son!
   Riker:     Wesley, I thought i told you no "seconds," remember?
   Data:      How interesting. It appears to be predatory, Captain.
   Picard:    Indeed. I think you are right.
   Crusher:   Will somebody do something!?!?!?!
 
 The door opens and Yar bursts in.
 
   Yar:       Wesley, didn't I explain to you about using aliens?  Stand back
              everybody.
 
 Yar sets her phaser on full power and fires, blowing a hole in the alien
creature. Fluids from the alien flow all over Wesley's face, melting it down.
 
   Crusher:   Oh!  What have you done?  Wesley, speak to me!!!
   Data:      Wesley is unable to speak, doctor. As you can see, there is a
              strange tubular appendage protruding down his esophagus. I doubt
              the flow of air would be sufficient.
   Picard:    Good. Now let's get back to work.
   Crusher:   I'm not going to let this happen! I'm going to save my son, no
              matter what!
 
                         ------------------------
Scene 3: The bridge. Normal crew members. Data and Geordi are sitting at their
         consoles; Riker, Picard, and Troi are spreading in their seats; Yar
         and Worf are playing Space Invaders.
 
   Picard:    Who farted?!?!
   Riker:     Not me. 
   Troi:      . I feel guilt, but it is not mine. 
   Data:      I am an android; I do not fart. .
   Geordi:    If it had been me, I would have seen it. .
   Worf:      Klingons fart only in airlocks. .
   Yar:       As your chief of security, I'd know if it had been me, sir.
              .
   Picard:    Shall we take a vote on it?
   Intercom:  Crusher to bridge!
   Picard:    Picard, bridge here, er, I mean...
   Riker:      You mean "Bridge, Picard here," right, sir?
   Picard:    Yes! Thank you, Number One. What is it Dr. Crusher?
   Crusher:   I think you'd better come down here, Captain, it's the alien,
              it's gone!
   Picard:    It is, oh, is Wesley dead?
   Crusher:   No, he's alive.
   Picard:    Damn. Just what does it take to get rid of him? We'll be right
              there. Lt. LaForge, you have the conn.
   Geordi:    Aye, sir.
 
 Picard, Riker, Data, Yar, and Worf leave the bridge. Various other
 individuals enter from several different doors.
 
                         ------------------------
Scene 4: Sick bay. Wesley's lying on the couch, as he sits up, half his face
         falls on the floor.
 
   Data:      It appears Wesley has been picking his nose again.
   Riker:     It's my fault. It won't happen again.
   Crusher:   Wesley hasn't been picking his nose, it was the body fluids from
              the alien that did this.
   Yar:       Found it captain. .
   Worf:      Too bad. I would have enjoyed fighting it.
   Picard:    By the way, what about the decontamination circuits, Worf?
   Worf:      They are still inoperative, sir. If there are any diseases, it
              would be an hoor to fight them for you, sir.
   Picard:     I would not think that ice cream would not
              be inappropriate for young Wesley, don't you think so, Number
              One?
   Riker:     I agree, sir.
   Data:       Captain, I tried to follow all your
              negatives, but I am not sure I understand what it was you said.
   Riker:      Here you go, Wesley.
   Wesley:    Oh boy! . I don't
              feel so good.
   Yar:       You see, Wesley, ice cream makes you feel good while you're
              eating it, but when its done, you don't feel so good. So say no
              to ice cream and you can have a figure like mine.
 
 Wesley's stomach pulsates, and then erupts in a mass of blood and ice cream.
 A small head appears and flashes its teeth. Worf flashes his teeth back.
 
   Alien:     Keeeeeee-yeeeaaaaaahnnnnnnnnnnnn!!!!
   Worf:      Aaaaaaaaaarrrrrrgggggghhhhhhhhhh!!!!
   Yar:       Watch it Worf, don't make him mad.
 
 Worf grabs a laser scalpel from a tray and attacks. The alien retreats into
Wesley's body cavity and Worf attempts to pursue. There is a large cracking
sound as Wesley's rib cage is broken up.
 
   Worf:       Wub wub wub wub wub!!!!
   Wesley:     AAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHH........
   Data:      Worf is now exhibiting a Klingon cry of glorious satisfaction.
   Picard:     I agree.
   Crusher:   Ohh..hh.hh.hhhh....hhhh!  He.. waszz huh huh..
   Picard:     Get a hold of yourself, Doctor. There are
              nearly a thousand passengers and crew on this vessel. They need
              you. I don't think anyone needed... "the boy."
   Yar:       Worf, did you get it?
   Worf:      No, it got away.
 
                         ------------------------
Scene 5: The bridge. Only Picard is there.
 
   Picard:    Captain's log, stardate 41235.7. This alien has killed my entire
              crew. I have tried to reason with it, but to no avail. I have no
              other choice but to do a saucer seperation and make my way to
              the nearest starbase and inform Starfleet. I have located the
              alien on deck 32, and I will have it self destructed, killing
              this most horrible beast, this creature formed from lent force,
              oh thou art such a cruel... uh, ahem... Captain out.
 
 Picard seperates the saucer section and blows up the other half of the
 Enterprise. While snoozing in his chair, he becomes aware of a presence on
 the bridge with him. He becomes alert and readies his phaser.
 
   Picard:    You!! You!! You've killed my crew, but I'll defeat you!!!
   Alien:     
 
 A flash of light behind Picard causes him to turn.
 
   Q:         Go ahead, kill it. It's an unknown, it's dangerous. What's the
              matter, Peck-hard, hair growing on the inside of that chrome
              dome caused your brain to malfunction?
   Picard:    Q!!! So you're behind this! Where's my crew? What have you done,
              you murderous scoundrel?!
   Q:         Oh come now, Mon Capitan. I'm just observing. I didn't bring the
              alien aboard. You did. Shoot it, it's dangerous.
   Picard:    No, no!!! I won't do what you want. We're civilized. We aren't
              barbarians anymore!
 
 Picard lowers his phaser and the alien attacks, biting off a chunk of
 Picard's head.
 
   Q:         Oh, Jean-Luc. I wasn't joking this time. I really meant it, it's
              dangerous. I can't believe you fell for the oldest trick in the
              book. Oh my. You foolish humans will never amount to anything.
              Even microbrain was smarter than you.
   Picard:     Whaaaaaaat...what did you mean you weren't joking...
   Q:          Shut up, Picard.
 

                               -> The End <-
 


"""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""""


> Usenet Review:  The Chaos Engine
  ================================
  Gary Bradley
  (gbradley@uk.oracle.com)


PRODUCT NAME

        The Chaos Engine


BRIEF DESCRIPTION

        A Gauntlet-style shoot'em up from the producers of such Amiga
mega-games as Speedball I & II and Gods.  One or two players.  Is this the
best Amiga game for a long time???


AUTHOR/COMPANY INFORMATION

        Name:           The Bitmap Brothers
        Address:        Renegade Software Ltd,
                        Unit C1, 
                        Metropolitan Wharf,
                        Wapping Wall,
                        London, England.


LIST PRICE

        25.99 (UK pounds sterling)


SPECIAL HARDWARE AND SOFTWARE REQUIREMENTS

        Runs on A500, A500+, A600, A1000, A1200, A2000, B2000,
        A2500, A3000, A4000.

        1 MB RAM required.


COPY PROTECTION

        Disk-based copy protection.  Not hard-drive installable.


REVIEW

        Okay, I might as well put my cards on the table right away.  This
game is f*cking brilliant.  I have had it now for 72 hours, and I have played
it during EVERY free moment I had.  I want to be playing it right now instead
of typing in this review!  It's been a LONG time since I have felt this good
about forking out #25.99 for a computer game!  I recommend all shoot'em up
fans go out and buy this baby right now!

        Okay, let's begin.  Firstly, the list of compatible machines above is
right out the manual; and since the manual includes statements like "Do not
attempt to 'back up' this data as it may be destroyed in the process," I
don't know how much of it to believe!  Secondly, the packaging (which I guess
should have been "firstly" since it's the first thing you turn your attention
to), ah well.  The packaging is great.  A nice big box ("Wow!" I hear you
cry, "What an innovation!" - just be patient will you?) whose front cover
illustrates 6 unsavoury characters.  "Ah-ha, it's the bad guys, I thought to
myself.  Not so!  These are the heros of the venture!  Beautifully drawn
they may be, but these "bad asses" are UGLY!  The box contains 2 disks, a
multi-lingual manual (complete with addendum, absolutely free!) and a little
wallet thingy which contains 8 beautifully produced postcards (pictures of
the 6 main characters, a description of the 4 Worlds in the game, and a nice
ominous black one with "The Chaos Engine" in cute lettering with the
yin-yang symbol whose devious purpose in the game will be discussed later.

        Do you need to know the scenario?  If not, skip to the next
paragraph!  Okay, early in this century some mad professor called Baron
Fortesque developed a machine called The Chaos Engine using early
engineering and computer technology.  The machine, like all good
Frankenstein monsters, goes berserk and rips a hole in the fabric of time and
space or something and causes Chaos to descend on the land.  Man and beast
alike is transformed into horrific monsters.  You see, although it was
primitive, the Chaos Engine was very powerful.  Oh yes, very.  Your job is
to fight your way through 4 worlds of 4 levels each and destroy the machine
and its creator.

        The game loads happily from 2 drives, meaning I didn't have to think
about anything but KILLING after I've shoved the disks in!  The intro is
typical Bitmap Brothers (henceforth referred to as "BB" to save the ol'
typing digits) and includes a nice Victorian-style picture of a crowd of
people surrounding a Tyrannosaurus, and profiles of each of the 6 characters
(very similar to the 6 postcards, in fact).  You can tell the game has
loaded from the next room as a blaring rave tune typical of all BB games
starts up.  I was very excited at that point, I was dying to play the game
because, quite frankly, all the nice packaging makes it sound like it's going
to be awesome....

        And it is!  The game is a bit like Gauntlet meets Gods (the BB's last
classic).  One or two human players can pick from the 6 main characters to
construct a party for the quest.  If there is only a human player, the
computer takes the 2nd character.  Either way, there are always 2 characters
to be selected from the list which reads:  Brigand, Gentleman, Navvie, Thug,
Preacher and Mercenary.  I would have been disappointed if each character
hadn't had different levels for a number of attributes... and I wasn't
disappointed.  Stamina, Health, Skill, Speed, Intelligence, Weapon Power,
Weapon Spread, Number of Shots... need I say more?  Well, yes, actually;
intelligence only applies to computer-controlled characters and determines
how well they help you (and also how well they help themselves - to all the
goodies lying around that you want to pick up!!).  However, in a 2-player
game, the highly intelligent characters (Preacher and Gentleman) tend to be
a bit weakened, as their intelligence basically goes to waste and they have
limited firepower and stamina.  But, then the Preacher is the only character
with the First Aid skill... etc. etc.  There are several combinations to try
out; so far, I have been most successful with the Navvie (best stamina and
firepower) and with the Preacher as my CPU-controlled sidekick.  I just love
those First Aids!

        A character's attributes are naturally "power-uppable" either by
collecting tokens during play, or visiting the shop every 2nd level to spend
the cash collected from the monsters (who have a habit of throwing it about
in their death-throes).  Each character also has one special ability, such as
First Aid, Map, Bomb, Dynamite, Molotov, Distract Monsters, etc., but more
abilities can be purchased as play progresses.  Special Powers are required
before the Special Abilities can be activated, and these too are collectible
or purchasable.  One nice touch in a 1-player game is that you get to use
the Special Ability and Special Powers belonging to your partner.  Gosh...
love that Preacher!!  Special Abilities are activated by the time-old
tradition of holding the fire button down longer than usual.

        Okay, you've decided which pair of characters you want to use (you
know in your heart you've only picked the Gentleman because his weapon looks
the best when it fires, but what the hell...) and it's on into the game.
The point of view is from above (like Gauntlet) and a little to one side
down the screen (not like Gauntlet) so that you can see one side of all
features.  Got it?  If not, it doesn't matter:  think of Gauntlet or Alien
Breed and you're close enough.  It also features several levels (in
"height") reachable via stairs, ramps or bridges, and you can fire only at
things on the same level as you (though you can drop Molotov cocktails down
on the nasties etc... that'll teach 'em!).  The levels tend to be much more
open than Gauntlet and are beautifully drawn.  The 4 worlds are The Forest,
The Workshops, Fortesque Mansion, and The Cellars, and each has different
graphics for the backgrounds and monsters you will meet.  Backgrounds are
complete with bubbling pools, waterfalls, steam valves, etc.  Gorgeous.
There is even a level well into the game where certain areas are flooded
with water and therefore inaccessible until you perform the appropriate
action (such as shooting a lever) which causes the liquid to drain off and
flood some other area... excellent!

        Gameplay is total addictive fun.  Both players run around shooting at
monsters and collecting items.  Sound simple?  It is!  Initially at least.
There are some areas with "monster generators" like Gauntlet, but these are
rare.  In general the monsters appear at predetermined points (like Gods)
rather all the time (like Alien Breed).  In fact, the whole game plays a bit
like Gods but with more emphasis on the shooting than the problem-solving or
object manipulating stuff.  As a result, the monsters are tough, intelligent
and devious and appear at the most inappropriate moments (their appearance
often triggered by the players touching objects or entering doors etc).  In
addition, the players can learn where the monsters will appear as they
become used to the game.  This latter point is no problem because the game
is so BIG.  I mean huge.  And that brings me on to...

        The puzzle element.  Most of the puzzles require the use of a
certain key or the pulling of a lever to make something happen.  The
"something" is almost always a something that gives you access to shortcuts
or bonus areas.  There are also these things called Nodes scattered around
that are activated by shooting at them.  Shooting the nodes causes the exit
to open.  But since there are multiple exits on the levels, finding the right
nodes becomes important... especially since each exit leads to a different
start point on the next level!  While some lead to "Power-Up Heaven," others,
quite literally, leave you in the shit!  To give an idea of how vast this
game is, I rarely manage to get any more than 60% completion before I leave
a level, and I am discovering new areas/bonuses that I missed EVERY time I
restart and play a new game!!  Naturally the logic problems get more devious
as the game progresses, and there are some real good ones on World 2.

        This game is best played with 2 humans as it becomes competitive!
All the money the characters collect goes into a level total.  In the bonus
screens, the computer divides it according to how well it thinks each human
did in finishing the level, not how much money they collected!  So make sure
you outblast your opponent!  In a one-player game, the money is divided
50/50, so the competitive edge lessens.  The game is FUN no matter how many
humans play!  The computer controls the other player very well.  It gets
better as you boost the computer player's intelligence.  However, not only
does an intelligent computer partner kill bad guys more efficiently, it also
steals all the juicy power-ups more efficiently adding a whole new dimension
to the game!

        Another nice feature is the Deathzone tokens (yep, the yin-yangs I
mentioned earlier).  Collecting these saves the current position and status
(except for stamina, obviously) of each player.  If all human players die,
this is point you return to.  But if one human lives while the other loses a
life, the dead person has to wait until his partner finds another yin-yang
before they are returned to play.  There are loads of yin-yangs about, so
don't worry!

        Finally, the graphics and sound are both top-notch, as you may have
expected.  The game is beautifully drawn and highly detailed.  Scrolling is
ultra-smooth and fast in 8 directions, "averaging" between the human
players.  In a 1-player games, scrolling follows the human player with a
"teleport to me" feature if the computer gets lost or stuck.  The monsters
are gruesome and even frightening in places!  Sound is basically a lengthy
rave track for each level with background sounds of the killing and the
shooting.  There is also lots of speech with phrases along the lines of
"Node Activated!", "Exit Open!", "Players Saved!", "Special Power!", "Power
up!", "Extra life!" etc., being "shouted" by the game at the appropriate
moment.  The speech is also done with a much better tone and accent than the
awful voice in Turrican 2!


DOCUMENTATION

        The game comes with a multi-lingual manual.


LIKES AND DISLIKES

        My likes have already been described above!

        My one criticism is about the sound.  (Yes, ONE criticism is all I
have about this game!!!).  You can't turn off the rave tunes during play.
The tunes are OK but become irritating after a while.  I would like to turn
them off and have FX only, but this can't be done:  you must have both!
This is a shame, since you need to hear the spot effects to know what's
going on in the level out of sight, so you have to put up with the bloody
tunes.  What a bummer.


CONCLUSIONS

        To summarise:  I really like this game.  In my opinion, it is the
best Bitmap Brothers game so far (and I am a BIG fan of Speedball 2), and the
best 2 player shoot'em up available on the Amiga (Alien Breed doesn't even
come close to this game in terms of playability!).  For those who like
numbers, I give this game 96% (in the tradition of UK Amiga magazines, I
chose a percentage figure!!) with the addition that it would have got 99% if
I could turn the rave music off!!  If you like shooting at things, buy The
Chaos Engine.



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> STR Dealer Directory       These are not ads -- just a reader service!
  ====================

                            Armadillo Brothers
                            753 East 3300 South
                           Salt Lake City, Utah
                           VOICE:  801-484-2791
                              GEnie:  B.GRAY


                           Finetastic Computers
                             721 Washington St
                             Norwood, MA 02062
                           VOICE:  617-762-4166
                       Portal:  FinetasticComputers
            Internet Mail:  FinetasticComputers@cup.portal.com


                                MicroSearch
                        9000 US 59 South, Suite 330
                              Houston, Texas
                           VOICE:  713-988-2818
                            FAX:  713-995-4994


          (Dealers:  To have your name added, please send Email!)

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                    Amiga Report's "EDITORIAL CARTOON"
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> A "Quotable Quote"
  ==================


                       "I'll buy that for a dollar!"




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       Amiga Report International Online Magazine ~ STR Publications
                     -* [S]ilicon [T]imes [R]eport *-
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STR Online!            "YOUR INDEPENDENT NEWS SOURCE"        April 30, 1993
Amiga Edition      Copyright (c) 1993 All Rights Reserved           No.1.07
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the editors  and staff  of Amiga Report International Online Magazine or of
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