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compt.sys.editor.desk By: Jason Compton
The Jay Miner Memorial Third Annual April Amiga Upheaval is officially
You all no doubt remember the inaugural April Upheaval '94, held in the
Bahamas, when Commodore International Ltd., second parent company of the
Amiga technology, filed for bankruptcy, prompting a year's worth of
uncertainty, trans-Atlantic sniping, and rampant tension.
April Upheaval '95 was held in New York City. Still fresh in our memories,
Escom purchased the assets of Commodore from the liquidation trustees.
They then set up Amiga Technologies, to administer the Amiga, and a new
Commodore OEM branch to repackage every PC component under the sun with
their newly acquired Commodore label.
April Upheaval '96 is being held in Germany this year. This time, it's
Escom selling Amiga Technologies to VIScorp of Chicago, USA. Those who
have been paying attention to the news will remember VIScorp as announcing,
mere days after Escom's Amiga acquisition, that they would be licensing the
technology for a new set-top box.
Amiga users are once again faced with uncertainty. While VIScorp
officials, notably Carl Sassenrath, late of Amiga Corporation and
Commodore-Amiga, have been doing a decent job of trying to quell the
deepest fears of Amiga users, questions still remain. VIScorp's press
materials make it quite clear that their set-top ED is their top priority,
but they reassuringly say that they will keep Amiga Technologies in place
as an Amiga computer sales and development company.
But in the shadow of this news, Amiga Technologies took the resignation of
one of its presidents, Stefan Domeyer, and laid off other employees.
(Reports range from 10 to 13 personnel, including Dr. Peter Kittel--one of
AT's first employees) No official information on the layoffs was available
at the time of press, but both Gilles Bourdin of Amiga Technologies and
Florine Radulovic of VIScorp, the respective press officers, acknowledge
the layoffs took place. Ms. Radulovic added that the layoffs were not done
under sanction or instruction of VIScorp, as VIScorp has not yet acquired
So far, solid information has not been in abundance. One thing is
clear--panic won't help anybody. Much as I hate uncertainty, getting
needlessly excited is only going to cause problems. Over the next few
weeks, the details should begin to unfold and we'll have
At least one source I have been in contact with for several months informs
me that in his experience, VIScorp is not all they appear to be, and our
WOA reporter's run in with the CEO of VIScorp leaves a lot of unanswered
questions. On the other hand, VIScorp's design team seems very serious
about their work and the expansion of the Amiga technology.
We will see.
PS: Due to the absolutely staggering amount of news and the very thorough
WOA UK reports, we've had to remove the BBS listing and hold off on some
reviews just to keep the magazine a decent length. We'll try to catch up
in AR 4.07.