MAG Disk (Jun 1993) : StuffToRead / 5min5-24

                               Welcome to the
    / ___)           *StarShip* 5-MINUTE Weekend Newscast
   / (_              ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
  / ___)
 / (__  very weekend the *StarShip* on GEnie presents a new 5-MINUTE Weekend
(_____) Newscast in Communications Room 10 in the Real-Time Conference Area.
Featuring late-breaking stories from the Amiga community, these dynamic,
scrolling newscasts cycle every 5 minutes, so you can stop by between 6PM and
3AM Eastern time on Friday, or 3PM and 3AM Eastern time on Saturday or Sunday
and learn everything that happened during the preceding week. Industry news,
product announcements, upgrades, rumors, special *StarShip* activities, trade
show reports, GEnie usage tips, humor, recommended files to download...
              ... the works -- and it ONLY takes 5 minutes!
Each 5-MINUTE Weekend Newscast is available on *StarShip* Menu #10 during the
following week. Periodically, newscasts are combined and made available for
downloading from the *StarShip* Library.
      //                                                            \
     ||                    -*-   IMPORTANT!   -*-                    |
     ||                                                              |
     ||  As long as individual  stories are kept intact  and credit  |
     ||  is given, this  material may be  reproduced in ALL or PART  |
     ||  on a  privately owned  BBS or in a  user group newsletter.  |
     ||  See wording for proper credit at the end of this Newscast.  |
                                  ||   |
                                  ||   |
                                              Thanks to Denny Atkin, Editor,
                                                   COMPUTE's Amiga Resource,
                                                     for his generous input.
                         DateLine: May 21, 1993
           This 5-MINUTE Newscast presents the following stories:
  1.  NewTek to Receive Special Emmy in September!
  2.  Commodore Announces Amiga 2000 Power Up Program
  3.  SupraTurbo 28 Increases Speed, Not Cost, of Amiga Computers
  4.  Next Week's *StarShip* Amiga Conferences 
  5.  Aladdin4D 2.3 Upgrade is Ready!
  6.  Aladdin4D Tutorial Video Tape Set!
  7.  DESERT STRIKE: Return to the Gulf for the Amiga
  8.  Psygnosis Ships Lemmings 2: The Tribes
  9.  Transform Your Amiga 500 into an AGA Amiga 1200!
                          *StarShip* NEWS *Flash*
                             1st of 9 Stories
               NewTek to Receive Special Emmy in September!
    _          ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
   / \            *StarShip* News Network -- May 21, 1993
  / - \
 / ___ \
(_/   \_)ccording to an Associated Press Newswire story at 4:21 AM today,
NewTek is slated to receive a Special Emmy in September for contributions to
the industry by virtue of the Video Toaster!
Further details were unavailable today as we were unable to reach a company
spokesperson for comment. The *StarShip* News Network will endeavor to bring
you details in the next 5-MINUTE Weekend News!
An Emmy! Wow! Congratulations, NewTek!
                          *StarShip* NEWS *Flash*
                             2nd of 9 Stories
              Commodore Announces Amiga 2000 Power Up Program
     Special savings for Amiga 2000 owners on purchase of an Amiga 4000
   / ___)            West Chester, PA -- May 14, 1993
  / /
 / (__
(_____)ommodore Business Machines, Inc. today announced it is offering
promotional pricing on Amiga 4000 series computers to owners of Amiga 2000
series computers. This Power Up program applies to purchases of an Amiga
4000-040/120 or Amiga 4000-030/120 between May 10 and June 30, 1993. The
promotional pricing is $2349* for the A4000-040/120 and $1599 for the
A4000-030/120, representing substantial savings of $1350 and $800 respectively,
based on Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Prices.
"The Power Up program is designed to position the Amiga 4000 as the new base
platform for development of future Amiga products," commented James Dionne,
Commodore President and General Manager. "By not requiring users to trade in
their A2000 computers, the promotion protects the user's investment in software
and add-on hardware while offering advanced Amiga 4000 features at a
substantial discount."
The high performance A4000-040/120 and A4000-030/120 both feature Commodore's
Advanced Graphics Architecture (AGA) chip set, enabling users to display and
animate graphics in multiple resolutons at up to 256,000 colors from a palette
of 16.8 million. Both systems include AmigaDOS Release 3, Commodore's
multitasking operating system that takes advantage of AGA features while
maintaining backward compatibility with most software developed for earlier
versions of AmigaDOS. Backward compatibility is also maintained for most
peripheral products originally designed for the Amiga 2000 or 3000 computers.
Amiga 2000 Power Up program participants can continue to use accelerated Amiga
2000s as rendering engines or as front-end systems for more sophisticated A4000
applications. With the number of Video Toasters installed in A2000s, the system
becomes a profitable enhancement in linked Video Toaster(TM) 4000 environments.
To receive the promotional pricing purchasers must provide the front cover of
their A2000 owners manual and their A2000 system serial number. Power Up
programing pricing is available at the time of purchase through a participating
Commodore Authorized Reseller in the United States.
Commodore Business Machines, Inc., based in West Chester, PA, is the U.S.
subsidiary of Commodore International Limited. The company manufacturers and
markets a complete line of Amiga computers and peripherals for the business,
consumer, education and government markets. The company's worldwide installed
user base of Amiga computers is presently almost four million.
Amiga(R), AmigaDOS and Advanced Graphics Architecture are trademarks of
Commodore-Amiga,Inc. Video Toaster is a trademark of NewTek, Inc.
(*) A2000 Power Up promotional pricing is subject to dealer participation.
Actual dealer pricing may vary. See dealer for further details.
                          *StarShip* NEWS *Flash*
                             3rd of 9 Stories
        SupraTurbo 28 Increases Speed, Not Cost, of Amiga Computers
 ______ ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
(__  __)                  Albany, OR -- May 1993
  / /
 / /
(_/he new SupraTurbo(TM) 28 accelerates Amiga 500 and Amiga 2000 computers from
7MHz to 28MHz, installs easily with no need to replace the existing processor,
and maintains Supra's reputation for price/performance leadership with its
suggested retail price of $199.95.
"SupraTurbo 28 is not only faster than an un-accelerated Amiga 500 or 2000, but
as the following chart shows, it actually meets or beats the speed of some
68030 accelerators that cost almost twice as much," said John Wiley, president
of Supra.
  /                                                                      \
 |                           Test 1          Test 2      Test 3           |
 |                      Software: ADPro       Lharc   VistaPro render     |
 |                    Convert 24-bit image             Mt. St. Helens     |
 |                    to 32-color low res.                                |
 |                                     Time in Minutes:                   |
 |      SupraTurbo 28                                                     |
 |        $199.95           0:29              0:37          3:41          |
 |      28MHz 68HC000                                                     |
 |      Unaccelerated                                                     |
 |       A500/2000          1.26              1.59         12:32          |
 |      AdSpeed                                                           |
 |       $209               0:47              1:05          6:14          |
 |      14.3 MHz 68000                                                    |
 |      VXL-30                                                            |
 |       $399               1:18              1:18          8:53          |
 |      25MHz 68030                                                       |
 |      VXL-30/32                                                         |
 |       $698               0:21              0:24          3:04          |
 |      25MHz 68030 with                                                  |
 |      2MB of 32-bit RAM                                                 |
Enhance without Concern
Beta test sites report that the SupraTurbo 28 significantly enhances
disk-intensive processes. The Workbench environment is more responsive,
animation can be run at faster speeds, and decompression of files becomes a
snap. Additionally the SupraTurbo 28 speeds processes such as compiling
programs and displaying graphics.
"Another big plus for A500 and A2000 users is that the SupraTurbo 28 lets them
gain the full benefit of high speed modems like the SupraFAXModem V.32bis,"
Wiley said. "Without the accelerator, attempts to communicate at speeds higher
than 9600 baud often result in data transmission errors."
The SupraTurbo 28 is fully compatible with the 68000 processor -- this enables
it to run with most software written for the 68000 processor. However, there
may still be cases where the user wants or needs to slow the computer back to 7
MHz for certain applications. To meet those needs, the SupraTurbo 28 has both
an external on/off switch as well as a software-driven speed control.
Expand without Compromise
"The SupraTurbo 28 grew out of customer demand," Wiley said. "We have been
selling peripherals to Amiga customers for years, and recently they've been
telling us they want their existing computers to run faster, without
compromising either their already-installed peripherals or their pocketbooks."
The unique design of the SupraTurbo 28 ensures this level of flexibility for
both A500 and A2000 users. The model designed for the A500 plugs onto the
external expansion bus. A unique bus pass-through slot allows users to add
additional expansion units such as hard drives and RAM. The A2000 model of the
SupraTurbo 28 plugs effortlessly into the 86-pin CPU expansion slot. Its slim
design enhances possibilities for additional internal peripheral products. The
easy installation procedures for both models can be performed without removing
the existing processor and without risking possible invalidation of warranty.
About Supra Corporation
Supra Corporation has been providing personal computer users with high-
quality, low-cost peripherals since 1985. Supra's products consistently win
accolades such as a 1992 Amazing Amiga Reader's Choice award for Best Hard
Drive Manufacturer.
Contact Information
For additional information, contact your authorized Amiga Reseller or Supra
Corporation at 7101 Supra Drive SW, Albany, OR 97321, telephone 503/967-2400,
fax 503/967-2401.
                          *StarShip* NEWS *Flash*
                             4th of 9 Stories
|                                                                          |
|                                           *StarShip* Amiga Conferences   |
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|                      (_/  \/  \_)(____( (___  /                          |
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|                                        (____/                            |
|                                                                          |
| Except where noted, Conferences begin at 10PM Eastern Time in the Amiga  |
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                            *StarShip* NEWS *Flash*
                               5th of 9 Stories
                      Aladdin4D 2.3 Upgrade is Ready!
    _                 ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
   / \                   Salem, Ohio -- May 1993
  / - \
 / ___ \
(_/   \_)laddin4D 2.3 is an "interim" upgrade from Adspec Programming. In the
late fall (or early spring) we will release 3.0, a truly major upgrade. As we
have been working on it, we have been asked over and over again for some of the
features we have ready. So we decided to answer these requests with this
interim upgrade. But don't think this is a minor upgrade. It is a truly
What's New and Different?
New Procedurals
New Bitmap Texture Method
Bitmap List Enable/Disable Reporting
Geo Scaling
Half Res and Double Res Modes
Full 3D Look
Shadow Acceleration
More Accurate Spherical Gases
Retina Support
And of course, we have continued to optimize the render routines for more
speed. This should be obvious in nearly all renders, but especially those that
use gases and/or procedural textures, and shadows. One shadow render I have
took 13+ minutes in 2.1, and takes 59 second in 2.3! This is not typical but
should give you some idea... And you have full control over shadow
optimization. Read the section on shadow acceleration.
New Procedurals
There are several new procedural textures. They are all real knock-outs. Just
select them and hit the suggested gadget. Then alter the parameters to
personalize them. The new ones are Tiles: Burst-Sine, Tiles: Circles2, Tiles:
Fireworks, Tiles: Radial, Tiles: Spirals, Tiles: Spirals-Sawtooth, Tiles:
Ripple1, and Tiles: Ripple2.
New Bitmap Texture Method
There is a new gadget in the texture member control window called "Tiles." This
is completely different from the shingles type. Select a bitmap texture, turn
on this gadget and hit suggested. Try altering the parameters. Also try
wrapping, free angle, etc. It is a true 3D coordinate indexing system. You're
gonna love it!
Bitmap List Enable/Disable Reporting
When you open the TXList window and select a texture list the program now
quickly looks at all polys in all spaces and determines whether it will be
permisible to add/delete members, alter mapping, etc., This is reported at the
bottom of the window. You can still open the member and control windows, but
peritinent gadgets will be disabled if needed. This prevents inexperienced (and
sometimes experienced) users from adding or deleting levels when all polys are
not selected.
Geo Scaling
When you load a geo file you are now asked to give a default scale to use when
converting the geo file. Some programs (Amiga) use coordinates in the range of
-3.0 to 3.0, while others (IBM) save coordinates in the range of -3000000000000
to 3000000000000! This scale choice handles this nicely.
Half Res and Double Res Modes
When you open the render options/screen mode you will now see 4 new gadgets.
They show capital D and H. The D stands for "double" and the H stands for
"half." You may choose to do either width, height or both. When you choose the
double mode, the program supersamples space by shooting more rays per pizel.
This results in a highly anti-aliased (and anti-noised) image. You may find
that you want to sometimes work in 368x476 DD instead of the usual 736x476 you
are used to. The DD modes are most useful when you want absolutely the best
quality. This may be for an image you are going to print, or that very
important still frame or animation. The results are stunningly better. Expect 3
to 4 times the normal render time, but a vastly improved image quality.
The HH mode does just the oppostie. It shoots fewer rays, then interpolates the
image into a larger format. The HH modes have two main uses. First you can see
a representation of the image 3 to 4 times faster. These images are great for a
quick idea of how the lights, shadows, textures, etc. are relating and really
speed the throughput of idea development. The second use is very interesting if
you use DCTV. As you know, this device requires a hires (640-704 wide) image.
This means you have to render in hires all the time, even for your test images.
The new HH mode allows you to render in lowres (320-352 wide) for your test
renders and see them at full size. In other words, if you use DCTV, you can do
your test renders 4 times faster. In our play, we have noticed that some
drawings, like gases on backgrounds, look nearly the same in HH and regular
modes, except that typical render times may be faster by factors of 3 or 4 by
using the new HH mode.
Full 3D Look
We have had many requests to dress the interface to a full 2.0 look and feel.
We have done just that. All gadgets and windows now have the 3D look of the 2.0
Shadow Acceleration
To our knowledge this is a true first on any platform or mainframe 3D
application. It is a "lossy" technique we have developed for ray tracing
shadows. It is related in spirit to JPEG and other types of compression, but
instead of compressing data, it compresses sampling with a corresponding
decrease in calculation (and time) required!
You will find the gadget in the shadow area of the attlist member control
window. Default value is 3. Range is 1 to 255, with 1 being the slowest and
most accurate and 255 being the fastest and most lossy. The compression is
applied across each "span." A span is the horizonal area covered by a single
polygon. The acceleration factor (i.e. 3) relates to the number of pixels
covered by the span. If the span is smaller than the requested acceleration,
the acceleration is replaced by the span to prevent extreme loss of shadow
detail. You don't necessarily need to understand all of this. Just try using
different numbers with your stop watch handy and you will see the results.
More Accurate Spherical Gases
A completely different method of determining the boundaries of spherical gases
inside their containers has been developed. It is absolutely accurate,
regardless of the angles of rotation of the container. Gases are also faster by
20 to 50 percent due in large part to the implementation of much more efficient
sort routines!
Retina Support
A direct render interface is now included for this fine hires resolution board,
joining our already existing support for FireCracker, DCTV, OpalVision and
Resolver, HAM8, etc. Just click the Retina gadget and watch your render
scanline directly in full 24-bit on this board at your choice of resolutions.
All products are trademarks of their respective companies.
Cost from Upgrading to v2.3:
U.S.:  $41.45
Canada/Mexico: 41.65
Overseas: $45.00
Ohio Residents: $43.85
The Aladdin4D v2.3 upgrade will NOT be available in the stores. Registered
owners of the program may order directly from Adspec Programming c/o P.O.Box
13, Salem, OH 44460 USA, telephone 216/337-3325, fax 216/337-1158. Visa,
Mastercard or check accepted.
                          *StarShip* NEWS *Flash*
                             6th of 9 Stories
                     Aladdin4D Tutorial Video Tape Set!
 _        _          ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
( \  /\  / )              Salem, Ohio -- May 1993
 \ \/  \/ /
  \      /
   \_/\_/hen Adspec Programming appeared on Computer Chronicles many of you
called and said it was very helpful to be able to sit down and watch someone
using Aladdin4D. Requests for a tutorial tape were overwhelming.
So here it is!
As a matter of fact, we went you one better. Instead of one tutorial tape, we
have produced a pair of tapes. Aladdin4D has just too many features to pack
into a single tape.
What's on the Tapes?
We first tried a "manual" approach. Each and every feature would be
painstakingly demonstrated. After a couple of hours of this, two things became
very clear. First, it would take about 12 full length tapes to do it. Second,
they were so boring that we couldn't even watch the first one!
So we switched to a project oriented approach. This is a much better method of
teaching, and the tapes are actually interesting. There are 8 demonstration
tutorials. Each lasts about 30 minutes and covers a main idea or feature. And,
of course, as each proceeds you get the reinforcement of seeing features used
over and over again, making them very familiar by the time you have finished
the tapes. The tapes feature Aladdin4D's creator, Greg Gorby, as he sits down
and actually usees the program to create the 8 projects.
Tutorial projects include:
Volume 1: (2 hour cassette)
Flying Logo: Font use is demonstrated as a word is extruded and flown past a
camera, rotating into place, complete with moving background.
Snow Storm: Aladdin4D's abilities in rotoscoping are demonstrated. Two levels
of panning backgrounds are combined with 3 levels of panning overlays as a 3D
crane moves between. A real blizzard!
Child's Mobile: The trace mode and hierarchial linking of paths are featured as
a child's mobile (complete with froggies and fishies) is built and animated.
Sun & Planet: Space genre fans will just die! To end the first tape, Greg uses
multiple gases to complete (in about 20 minutes) what may be the most
convincing sun you've seen out of a 3D program. Complete with animated flames
and a planet that is semi-cooled and still glowing. Truly good stuff.
Volume 2: (2 hour cassette)
Space Scene: The space theme is continued by building a convincing space ship
using a bump map to convey subtle details. The ship slowly descends, then the
engines suddenly fire (using gases) and propel the ship away. Multiple
attribute list members and bump maps are the focus.
Ball Bounce: A puzzle environment is built from basic building blocks, then a
bouncing helix wrapped ball winds its way through the maze as the camera
follows in hot pursuit.
Insect Waves: A 3D insect flies down to a stone walled pool of water and
bounces on the water 6 times resulting in expanding wave rings. Features
opacity mapping and wave sources.
Davinci Dance: Greg shows how you can fly a camera around a bitmap at will with
precise positioning.
The Aladdin4D Video Tutorial Tape Set is avalable in the complete 2-volume set
only, VHS-NTSC. Available directly from Adspec Programming; orders placed
within the US are $59.95, Canada/Mexico $65.95, Ohio Residents $63.25, Overseas
please call or fax for cost.
For more information or to order, contact Adspec Programming, c/o P.O. Box 13,
Salem, OH 44460, telephone 216/337-3325, fax 216/337-1158.
                          *StarShip* Amiga *Flash*
                              7th of 9 Stories
     ____      DESERT STRIKE: Return to the Gulf for the Amiga
    / ___)     ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
   / (_                  San Mateo, CA - May 1993
  / ___)
 / (_
(____)A's Air force needs one good pilot!
Assignment: With the copilot of your choice fly a solo mission into the heart
of the Middle East.
Objective: Eliminate hostile dictator and his entire military complex.
Category: Action/Simulation
Qualifications: combat experience in AH-64 helicopter and nerves of steel.
Do you have what it takes?  If so, pack your duffel bag and prepare for
Electronic Arts' upcoming release of Desert Strike: Return to the Gulf for the
Amiga. Desert Strike offers fast paced arcade action combined with the realism
and depth of a simulation. Hop into your full-armed Apache and obliterate the
enemy's radar stations, airfields, SCUD launchers, command centers, chemical
weapons plants, and the list goes on. With the freedom to range over enemy
territory at will, sound mission strategy is the key to your survival.. You see
the world from a unique 3/4 top-down perspective, and the terrain is alive with
hostile infantry patrols, tanks, mobile anti-aircraft guns and surface-to-air-
Before you can take out the vicious madman who created this global menace, you
must complete four intricate campaigns. Each campaign involves several
dangerous missions which are best accomplished in a logical sequence, and they
take place by both day and night  Success is mandatory; you must accomplish all
the missions in all the campaigns before you learn where the insane dictator is
hiding. Defend oil fields, rescue hostages, capture commanders, take out
nuclear weapons sites-this game tells it like it is. At intervals you will be
awarded stunning cinematic sequences depicting your latest acts of heroism.
Since this is a solo, clandestine operation, you will have no back-ups and no
radio contact. Success depends on you and your copilot. Your Apache is equipped
with an on-board battle map to help you plot attack routes, and a flight
recorder keeps track of your status throughout each campaign. You begin with a
full tank of gas and a full complement of weapons, but supplies run out fast
and become more and more scarce as the campaigns progress. Resource management
is critical. Take out enemy installations and salvage their weapons and fuel
Desert Strike is a trademark of Electronic Arts. Contact your authorized Amiga
Reseller for more information.
                          *StarShip* NEWS *Flash*
                              8th of 9 Stories
                  Psygnosis Ships Lemmings 2: The Tribes
 ______           ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
(__  __)               Cambridge, MA -- May 19, 1993
  / /
 / /
(_/he Lemmings are back! The next generation of Psygnosis' incredibly
successful game has arrived! Lemmings 2, the long awaited sequel to the award
winning Lemmings brings the same intellectually challenging, fast paced play to
an even higher level.
Having survived the perils of Lemmings and Oh No! More Lemmings, those lovable
green-haired numbskulls have populated every corner of Lemmingland and evolved
into twelve distinct tribes. In addition to their basic walking, digging,
climbing and building skills, each Lemming tribe has developed unique
behaviours that are specifically suited to mastering the dangers found in their
corner of Lemming Island. But, a great danger faces them all and, you guessted
it, YOU'LL HAVE TO SAVE THEM AGAIN; tribe by tribe bringing them all together
for a final exodus.
    Thrill to the radical moves of the Beach Lemmings as they "hang ten"
    and surf past danger!
    Cheer as the Sport Lemmings run and jump across the screen, successfully
    reaching the exit.
    Check out the cool Polar Lemmings when they ski past the hazards of
    their frozen environment.
    Chuckle at the silly Circus Lemmings while they inflate their balloons
    and float across the screen.
Lemmings II also features a host of technical improvements like: eight-way
scrolling; 256 VGA color; rich, sampled sound effects and music; and an
innovative modular design that will allow extensive customization of future
enhancements in sound and video support.
Suggested Retail Price:  $59.95.
Lemmings 2 is shipping NOW from Psygnosis. For more information, contact your
local authorized Amiga reseller or Psygnosis, 675 Massachusetts Ave., Cambridge
MA 02139, telephone 617/497-5457, fax 497-6759.
                          *StarShip* NEWS *Flash*
                             9th of 9 Stories
              Transform Your Amiga 500 into an AGA Amiga 1200!
    ____      ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
   / ___)             Schenectady, NY -- May 1993
  / /
 / (__
(_____)opperhead Technologies is now shipping the Amiga 500 AGA Upgrade Kit.
This complete motherboard replacement project includes everything necessary to
transform your Amiga 500 into an Amiga 1200 in under an hour.
The kit includes: A1200 Motherboard, Kickstart 3.0, Instructional video tape,
and keyboard adapter. (Minor A500 case modification required.)
The cost is only $325.00 with your A500 motherboard trade-in. For more
information contact Copperhead Technologies, 104 Jay Street, Schenectady, NY
12305, telephone/fax 518/346-3894, BBS 518/346-7532.
               Over a GIGABYTE of Amiga files in our Library!
        Catch your limit of Fred FISH Disks from the *StarFish* Library.
        If you are after a SINGLE PROGRAM on a Fish Disk, SEARCH for it
        before downloading the disk.  Most are available separately!
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