Liste des magazines disponibles sur AMIGALAND.COM
On July 23, 1985, the Amiga personal computer premiered with a stellar performance to an audience of press, software and hardware developers. Commodore shareholders, members ol the investment comnmnity, computer dealers and celebrity followers. Tîie star of the eve* ning was the new Amiga ilself, wliich gave a dazzling display of ils capabilities. While the Amiga*s performance stood alone as the eve* ning’s highlight, there was a strong supporting cast. Among Commodore officers, Irving Gould. Marshall Smith, Thomas Rattigan. Robert Truckenbrod and Robert Farad isso were présent; speakers and performers also included world-famous art- ist Andy Warhol and highly-ac- claimed musicians, Michael Bodicker and Tom Scott. The Amiga début uiifolded like a symphony, with an exposition, development and récapitulation, présenting a rich variety of constrasting thèmes: the juxtaposition of art and science, imagination and technology, créaiivity and productivity, power and grâce, With the Amiga, comrasiing éléments merge into an élégant and syn- ergistic whole. Will you lise your Amiga for a varietv of tasks as the ultimate multifunction machine, or will you use the Amiga as your inost advanced computing tool in just one specialized discipline? At the Amiga launch, one theme rang ont among ail others: Whatever your need. The Amiga can meet it. If you’rc a business executive, you’ll have Amiga’s multitasking, speed and mem- orv. For an additional bonus, you can also run your most important IBM PC software the Amiga engineers have created the Amiga Emulator, an inge- nious 3.5-inch PC DOS emulator disk that you can loacl into your Amiga's ROM, which will allow you to run the best PC software packages, like Lotus 1- 2-3 and Wordstar. Il" you were an artist attend- ing the Amiga première, you were treatecl to a live démonstration of the Arniga’s video interface and paint program as you watched Andy Warhol cre- aie lus first computer portrait using the Amiga. Fie colored a riigitized image of'fanions singer, Dcbra Harrv (“Blondie”). Il von were a nnisieian, von sai eniranceri while a programmed Amiga accompanied saxaphon- ist Tom Scott in live performance, following his nuances and tempo changes, in a démonstration of Cherry Laite Technologies* breakt hrough program, Harmony. Computer programmers were pleased to hear John Sldrley, Président of Microsoft Corporation, speak of his company's communient to the Amiga and the development of Microsoft’s most advanced Basic to date. In addition, Dr. Martin Alpert, Président of'Tecmar, spoke en* thusiastically about Amiga’s sig- niflcance to the business market. Throughoul the evening. Amiga continued to perform. Applausc broke ont often as graphie images appeareri and danced about in dazzling color on lliree overhead screens. In a dis- plav of its ability to perform ad- vanced speecli synlhesis, Amiga spoke to its audience and drew applausc. 1 lie Amiga becatne a music svnthesizer in its own riglit, ci ni ilat ing the sou i iris of a violin, xylophone and tuba. Plie Amiga showeri off ils animation feattires hv mimicking a classical halleri- na‘s every step in perfectsynchronization with a live danccr and lier musical accompaniment.
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- PC COMPATIBIUTY
Volume I, Number 2, November December 1985
12 White-Collar Amiga
By Guy Wright
The Amiga is right at home in the business world. Here are some things you should know before bringing an Amiga into your office.
18 The Right Stuff: The Amiga in the Marketplace
By Douglas Watt
The Amiga is a new enlry in a fiercely compétitive market. To survive, it will necd the right stuff.
24 In Stark Contrast: Comparing the Amiga with the Macintosh and IBM PC
By Margaret Morabito
'I'he Amiga’s new technology represents a serious challenge to Apple and IBM.
34 The Trump Card: Amiga’s IBM
PC Software Emulator
A look at the ingénions Amiga Emulator a 3.5-inch software emulator disk ihat gives you access to the wide world of IBM PC software.
3 The Bottom Line: An
Introduction to Spreadsheets
By Vahe Guzelimian
You doift bave to bc an accountant or a computer programmer to inaster the art of "spreadsheeting.”
42 Digital Imagery
By Matthew Leeds
Digital image processing is a growing ficld with virtually unlimited applications. The Amiga and a digitizer will bring this new technology within the reach of businesses, art studios, schools and even homes.
T-card"* snaps on your Amiga to give you memory up to 1MB, clock calendar with standby battery, serial port, parallel or SASl port, buffered bus expansion port, and built-in power supply. Power peripherals don’t get any better. T-card is awesome!
Iks 20MB Hard Disk
T-disk™ sits on your Amiga taking no valuable desk space to provide almost unlimited file capacity. Inside its sleek package, T-disk houses a 3V: inch hard disk with controller. A shielded cable connects T-disk to T-card’s SASl port. Lights show you the disk’s power, select, and write status. T-disk is simple, powerful, and best of ail low cost.
20MB Tape Backup
When you move beyond floppies to Tecmar’s powerful 20MB T- disk, you’ll want a fast, reliabfe tape backup System. T-tape™ backs up T-disk’s 20MB'sinjust a few minutes. And, if power loss or operator error accidently erases your most treasured data, you get sélective file restoration. T-tape's handsome package interlocks with T-disk. Lights show track number and tape direction plus read, write, door, and power status. T-tape is truly state-of-the-art with a unique single reel cartridge, exceptional performance, and a very low price.
2400 Baud Modem
T-modem™ brings fast and simple communications to your Amiga. Hayes compatibility with selectable 300, 1200 and 2400 baud rates makes the world a little smaller and a lot easier to talk to. T-modem provides tone decoding, off-hook détection, and interface to Amiga's audio circuits. The high-styled package interlocks with T-disk and T-tape to make a single unit
- 300 ’ tOO
Hayes is a registered trademark ol Hayes Microcomputer Products Amiga is a trademark of Commodore Amiga, Inc. T-disk. T-tape. And T-modem aretrademarksof Tecmar. Inc. 1985. Tecmar. Inc. Ail rights reserved.
Call us at 216 349-1009 for the location of the dealer nearest you.
THE POWER BEHIND THE PC
6225 Cochran Road Solon, Ohio 44139
Ctrcle 5 on Reader Service card.
Of Talent and Technology
By Peggy Herrington
MIDI is the standard of communication between computers and musicians.
Your MIDI-equipped Amiga can place you in the avant-garde of the révolution in nuisit.
Cherry Lane Technologies: Maestros of Innovative Music Software
By Ahigail Reifsnyder
Cherry Lane is playing a key rôle in the development of advanced music software for the Amiga.
Programming in C: Speaking the Amiga’s Language
By Sheldon Ijsemon
The Amiga is idéally suited to software development in C. Here’s a look ai the C programming language and the company that developed Amiga’s C.
Metacomco: Developers of AmigaDOS
lhis small Knglish company is the first naine in Systems software development for the Amiga.
Accountability: Keeping Track of Small Businesses
By Guy Wright
An Amiga with accounting software can be a boon to a small business.
By Guy Wright
Kase of use and flexibility highlight Arktronics Corporation’s Amiga word processor.
Reflections on the Amiga‘s formai unveiling.
What is AmigaWoM and wliere is it going?
Introducing the world of télécommunications.
A showplace for Amiga artists,
Questions about the Amiga, answered h y the experts.
Corning Next Issue
Editor-ln - Ch ief Guy Wright
M a nagi ng Ed i to r Shawn Laflamme
Assistant Editor Vinoy Laughner
Associâte Editor Swain Pratt
Cou t ribu t ing Editor s Marilyn Annucci, Harold Bjornsen, Dennis Brisson, Margaret Morabito, Susan Tanona
Advertising Sales Manager Stephen Robbins
Sales Représentative Ken Blakeman
Ad Coordinator Heather Paquette 1-800*441-4403 Ma rket ing Coordinator Wendie Haines
West Coast Sales Giorgio Saluti, manager 1-415-328-3470 1060 Marsh Road Menlo Park, CA 94025
Design: Glenn A. Suokko Photogi*aphy: EdJutiice,
Design Consultant: Christine Destrempes Séparation: Ultra Scan Printing: Brown Printing
James S. Povec
Vice 'Prcs i den t Fi n a n ce Roger Murphy
Vice-President Planning and Circulation William P. Howard
Assistant General Manager Matt Smith
Executive Creative Director Christine Des trempes Circulation Manager Frank S. Smith
Direct àf Newsstand Sales Manager
Director of Crédit Sales àf Collections William M. Boyer
Art Director Glenn A. Suokko Editorial Design Glenn A. Suokko
Production Advertising Supervisai' Rosalyn Scribner
Graphie Design Assistants Anne Dillon, Karla Whitney
Graphie Services Manager Dennis Christensen
Film Préparation Supervisor Robert M. Villeneuve
Typesetting Supervisor Linda P. Canale
AmigaWorid (ISSN 08832390) is an independenl journal not counected with Commodore Business Machines, Inc. AmigaWorid is published bimomhly by CW Communications Peterborough, Inc., 80 PineSt., Peterborough, NH 03458. U.S. subscription raie is $ 19.97. one vear. Canada and Mexico $ 22.97, one year. U.S. funds drawn on U.S. bank only. Foreign Surface $ 39.97. Foreign Air Mail $ 74.97,
U. S. funds drawn on U.S. bank. Second class postage pending at Peterborough, NH, and at addiiional mailing offices. Phone: 603-924-9471. Enlire contents copyright 1985 by CW Communications Pe- terborough, Inc. No part of this publication may be printed or otherwise reproduced without written permission from the publisher. Postmaster: Scnd ad- dress changes to AmigaWorid, Subscription Services, PO Box 954, Farmingdale, NY 11735, Nationally dis- tributed by International Circulation Disiributors. AmigaWorid makes every effort to assure the accuracy of articles, listings and circuits published in the magazine. AmigaWorid assumes no responsibility for damages due lo errors or omissions.
AmigaWorid is a member of the CW Communications Inc. Group, the world's largest publisher of computer-related information. The group pub- lishes 57 computer publications in more than 20 major counlries. Nine million peopte read one or more of the group’s publications eacb motub. Mem- bers of the group include: Argentina’s Computer- world Argenlina; Àsia’s The Asian Computerworld; Australia’s (Computerworld Æustralia, Australien PC World, Macworld and Directories; Brazil's DataNeivs and MicroMundo; China’s China Computerworld; Den- mark's ComfmterworldJDanmark, PC World and R UN (Commodore); Finland’s Mikro; France’s te Mon le Informatique, Golden (Apple), ÜPC (IBM) and Distrib- utique; Germany’s Computenooche, Mierocompu(erwelt, PC Well, SoftwareMarkt, CW Edition Seminar, Computer Business, RUN and Apple's; ltaly’s Computenvorld Italia and PC Magazine, Japan's Computenvorld Japon; Mex- ico’s ComputeiivorUUMexico and CompuMundo; The Nelberland’s Computer World Bénélux and PC World Berielux; Norway’s Computerworld Norge, PC W'orld and RUN (Commodore); Saudi Arabia’s Saudi Computerworld-, Spain’s Computerworld Espana, Microsistemas PC W'orld and Comînodore Wrorld; Sweden's ComputerSweden, Mikrodatom, and Svenska PC; the UK's Computer Management, Computer News, PC Business World and Computer Business Europe; the U.S.’ AmigaWorid, Computerworld, Fucus Publications, HOT CoCo, inCider, infoWorld, Mac World, Micro Marketworld, On Communications, PC W'orld, RUN, 73 Magazine, 80 Micro; Venezuela’s Computerworld Venezuela.
Manuscripts: Contributions in the form of manu- scripts with drawings and or photographs are wel- tome and will be considered for possible publication. AmigaWorid assumes no responsibility for loss or damage to any material. Please enclose a selfaddressed, stamped envelope with each sub- mission. Payrnent for the use of any unsolicited material will be made upon acceptance. Alt contributions and éditorial correspondence (typed and double-spaced, please) should be direeled to AmigaWbrld Editorial Offices, 80 Fine Street. Peterborough, NH 03458; téléphoné: 603-924-9471. Advertising Inquiries should be directed to Advertising Offices, CW Communications Peter- borough, Inc., Elm Street, Peterborough, NH 03458; téléphoné: 800-441-4403. Subscription problems or address changes: Call 1-800-344-0015 or write to AmigaWbrld, Subscription Department, PO Box 868, Farmingdale, NY 11737. Problems with advertisers: Send a description of the problem and your current address to: AmigaWorid, Elm Street, Peterborough, NH 03458, ATTN.: Rita B. Rivard, Customer Service Manager, or call 1-800-441-4403.
How Borland’s Turbo Pascal Found À Partner That Matches Its Âmazing Speed.
Turbo Pascal meets the Amiga"1.
Graphies procédures keyed to business, scientific and engineering applications; and Turbo Tutor™ the one tutorial that will take beginners and make them experts, AND will even teach a few things to the experts!
Turbo Pascal and ail its associated tools, will be available for the Amiga in the first quarter, 1986. It's already implemented for the IBM PC
family and IBM-compatibles, and other microcomputers from Texas Instruments™, Hewlett Packard™, DEC™, Wang™, Apple® and NCR":
Turbo Pascar hâtes to wait. With Turbo, it’s go fast’ or go away’.
So before we committed to becoming the exclusive Pascal programming language for Commodore’s new Amiga, we haci to be sure that it was up to speed. It had to be fast and it is. 68000-based, with custom chips and graphies, Amiga doesn’t dawdle. (In fact, Amiga’s speed is going to be a headache, a heartache and a headwind to the Compétition.)
When you're faster than anyone else, you look for someone who can keep up with you. Turbo Pascal found Amiga.
We think Amiga will take off just like Turbo Pascal did.
With more than 400,000 users world-wide, Turbo Pascal has become a de facto standard and grown into a complété Turbo Tamily'. A family that now includes Turbo Database Toolbox™ a Turbo Pascal enhancement with fast data access and sorting talents; Turbo Graphix Toolbox"' a set of
4585 Scotts Villey Drive, Scoits VtOey CA 95066 Phone (408) 438-8400 Telex 172373 (à)mpuserve - GO BOR
Copyright 1985 Borland International BI-1Û13
Turbo tocal Turbo Database Toolbox. Turbo Graphix Toolbux arul TlirboTutor are trademarks of Borland International Inc.
IBM rs a mnicmark of International Business Machines.
Amig.i is a tr.ulcrn.uk of Commodore EleciruokN ÛTD.
Texas Instruments ts a trademark ol Texas Instruments, lue.
1 Jcwlctt Packard is a irudcmark of Hewlett Packard DEC ts a tradcnr.uk of Digital Hquiptnent Corp.
Wanu is a tradeniark nf Wang Lit* iraii mes, Inc Apple i% a regisxerod tntdcnvirk n* Apple Computer, Inc MCR Is x tradetnark of NCR Gorp.
Circle 13 on Reader Service card
Imagine vourself al Lincoln Cenler* New York City, in formai dress, You are standing amidst a sea of luxedos and eve* ning dresses. No. You are noi at- tending a ballet at the New York City Thcatre or an opéra at the Met, You are at tending the world première of Amiga at the Vivian Beaumont Théâtre.
On July 23, 1985, the Amiga personal computer premiered with a stellar performance to an audience of press, software and hardware developers. Commodore shareholders, members ol the investment comnmnity, computer dealers and celebrity followers. Tîie star of the eve* ning was the new Amiga ilself, wliich gave a dazzling display of ils capabilities.
While the Amiga*s performance stood alone as the eve* ning’s highlight, there was a strong supporting cast. Among Commodore officers, Irving Gould. Marshall Smith, Thomas Rattigan. Robert Truckenbrod and Robert Farad isso were présent; speakers and performers also included world-famous art- ist Andy Warhol and highly-ac- claimed musicians, Michael Bodicker and Tom Scott.
The Amiga début uiifolded like a symphony, with an exposition, development and récapitulation, présenting a rich variety of constrasting thèmes: the juxtaposition of art and science, imagination and technology, créaiivity and productivity, power and grâce, With the Amiga, comrasiing éléments merge into an élégant and syn- ergistic whole.
Will you lise your Amiga for a varietv of tasks as the ultimate multifunction machine, or will you use the Amiga as your inost advanced computing tool in just one specialized discipline? At the Amiga launch, one theme rang ont among ail others: Whatever your need. The Amiga can meet it. If you’rc a business executive, you’ll have Amiga’s multitasking, speed and mem- orv. For an additional bonus, you can also run your most important IBM PC software the Amiga engineers have created the Amiga Emulator, an inge- nious 3.5-inch PC DOS emulator disk that you can loacl into your Amiga's ROM, which will allow you to run the best PC software packages, like Lotus 1- 2-3 and Wordstar.
Il" you were an artist attend- ing the Amiga première, you were treatecl to a live démonstration of the Arniga’s video interface and paint program as you watched Andy Warhol cre- aie lus first computer portrait using the Amiga. Fie colored a
riigitized image of'fanions singer, Dcbra Harrv (“Blondie”). Il von were a nnisieian, von sai eniranceri while a programmed Amiga accompanied saxaphon- ist Tom Scott in live performance, following his nuances and tempo changes, in a démonstration of Cherry Laite Technologies* breakt hrough program, Harmony.
Computer programmers were pleased to hear John Sldrley, Président of Microsoft Corporation, speak of his company's communient to the Amiga and the development of Microsoft’s most advanced Basic to date. In addition, Dr. Martin Alpert, Président of'Tecmar, spoke en* thusiastically about Amiga’s sig- niflcance to the business market.
Throughoul the evening. Amiga continued to perform. Applausc broke ont often as graphie images appeareri and danced about in dazzling color on lliree overhead screens. In a dis- plav of its ability to perform ad- vanced speecli synlhesis, Amiga spoke to its audience and drew applausc. 1 lie Amiga becatne a music svnthesizer in its own riglit, ci ni ilat ing the sou i iris of a violin, xylophone and tuba. Plie Amiga showeri off ils animation feattires hv mimicking a classical halleri- na‘s every step in perfect synchro-
nization with a live danccr and lier musical accompaniment.
The world première ol Amiga présents an opportunity to computer users and a challenge to the tnarketplace. The opportu- nitv is to use Amiga’s capabili- tics to gain a créative edge in ail fïclds ol endeavor. I lie challenge is to programmers, inven- tors. Entrepreneurs and mai- keters to push computer applications to new limits and to explore imcharted ground in the microcompuler industry.
Àflcr the présentation, the en- thusiastic attendees ftled into the lobby and the chatter com- menced. On the halcony ahove, Amiga software and peripheral dcvclopers had set up booths and were displaying their secretly de- veloped produi ts for the new Amiga. Reporters were asking hundreds of questions, freelance writers and programmers were seeking opportunities, company présidents and executives were engaged in conversation, and most everyone carried copies of the ArnigaW'orld première issue, a fitting accompaniment to a stellar Amiga performance.
By Guy Wright
What Is AmigaWorld and Where Is It Coing?
It inight be a little strange 10 admit it, but I don’t think thaï I really know where AmigaWorld is going. I have a pretty good idea of what the first issue was and what tliis, our second issue, is and what the third issue is going to be like, but beyond that, things are pretty much up in the air. A lot dépends on the Amiga computer itself and the peuple who buy it. If 90% of the machines are sold to the military, then I guess we will lean toward military applications. If most of the Arnigas are sold to schools, then educa- tional topics will play a major roie in AmigaWorld. If rodeo clowns are the primary buyers of Amigas, then you can expect to sec articles about boises, cowboys and fake noses.
On the surface, this inight not seem like an éditorial direction at ail, but it is actually a calcu- lated direction. As the naine AmigaWorld implies, we will cover the things of interest in the world of the Amiga, and that means the world of Amiga owners. It is a curious kind of endless circle. The nature and content oï AmigaWorld will have sotne influence on the kinds of people who buy the computer (in a small way, granted), and our éditorial content will déterminé the kinds of peuple that we at tract, so that feedback from our readers is going to be a bit self-fulfilling. (People will buy AmigaWorld because they like il, and they will tell us thev
want the kinds of things thaï we were already doing to attract them in the first place.)
A significant time lag prob- lem is also inhérent in publish- ing a magazine. We haveto décidé what articles we want to put in the magazine months in ad- vance so that we can contact au- thors to write those articles in time for us to edit, typeset, correct, layout, print and distribute the magazines. What this means is that we start thinking about Christmas issues in July. The ef- fect of this time lag is that by the time we can react to feedback from readers in an upcoming issue, six months will have passed.
So, as Editor-in-Chief of AmigaWorld, I have to be able to look into the future. I am the one who tries to décidé what kinds of things YOU will want to read six months from now. If you ask anyone who lias been in the industry for a while about the future of computers, they will probably say that prédictions of any kind in this industry are usually unreliablc. Howevcr, I can say a few things with certainty regarding what you’ll be reading about in our future issues and other tliings that I have a pretty good feeling about.
This issue is, for the most part, dedicated to the Amiga in business environments. You will Find articles about how to intro- ducc the Amiga into the office with a few hints 011 things to do and not do. You will also see articles about accounting, spread- sheets and word processing. For those of you in the business of writing software, therc is a piece on the programming lan- guage C and sonie words about sotne of the people in the business of writing Amiga programs.
Just so we don’t alienate everyonc who isn’t in business, we included articles on tnusic, digitizing video images and our other standard features, like Help Kev, Digital Canvas, etc. Though this issue focuses on business (and business will be a subject that we will retu ni to over and over again in future issues), we are not planning to make ArnigaWorld a business computing magazine. Or, if we do, it will be targeted toward a différent sort of business the kind of entrepreneurial business that most of our readers will want to learn about. We will have your basic articles on standard business applications on the Amiga, but we want to go far beyond that.
Illustration by Sheryl Knowles
8 Noirember December 1985
We think thaï you bought an Amiga for icasons that go bc- yond the mundane. Your décision involved a level of excitemcnt that other computers did not stimulate, and we want to fan that spark.
Just because you’re not taking the Amiga on the space shuttle does not mean that you aren’t in- terested in reading about sonie- one who does. Your reasons for buying an Amiga may have been straightforward and practical, and you will probably explore it‘s ca- pabilities at your leisure, but our job is to take you to the fronder and keep pushing onward. Through AmigaWorld» you will bc able to try some of the unique, strange, complicated things that the Amiga was designed for. We will take the chances for you, and if there is something that catches your eye and fuels your imagination. You might wish tojoin us.
So, when you think that you have AmigaWbrld finallv figured out, think again. We may not be able to predict exactly whai people will be doing with Amiga computers next August, or what kinds of articles and features we’ll have then, but 1 am positive that AmigaWorld will always be unique, informative, exploratory and new. A fier ail, don’t you, the Amiga owner, de- serv e that?
A message from a leading software publisher.
Why Electronic Arts
“The Amiga will revolurionize the home computer industry. It's the first home machine thar has everything you want and need ior ail the major uses of a home computer, induding entertainment, éducation and productivité The software we’re developing for the Amiga will blow your socks off. We think the Amiga, with it’s incomparable power, sound and graphies, will give Electronic Arts and the entire industry a very bright future.
Trip Hawkins Président, Electronic Arts
IS COMMUTED TO THE AMIGA.
In our first two years, Electronic Arts has emerged as a leader of the home software business. We have won the most product quality awards over 60. We have placed the most Bitlhoard Top 20 rides- 12. We have also been consistently profitable in an industry beset by losses and disappointments.
Why, then, is Electronic Arts banking its hard won gains on an unproven new computer like the Amiga?
The Vision of Electronic Arts.
We believe that one day soon the home computer will be as important as radio, stereo and télévision are today.
These electronic marvels are significant because they bring faraway places and expériences right into your home. Today, from your living room you can watch a championship basketball game, see Christopher Columbus sail to the New World, or watch a futuristic spaceship battle.
Tire computer promises to 1er you do much more. Because it is interactive you get to participate. For example, you can play in that basketball game instead of just watching. You can actually be Christopher Columbus and feel firsthand what he felt when hc sighted the New World. And you can step inside the cockpit of your own spaceship.
But so far, the computers promise has been hard to see. Software
has been severely limited by the abstract, blocky shapes and rinky- dink sound reproduction of most home computers. Only a handful of pioneers have been able to appreciate the possibilités. But then, popular opinion once held that télévision was only useful for civil defense communications.
A Promise of Artistry.
The Amiga is advancing our medium on ail fronts. For the first time, a personal computer is providing the visual and aurai quality our sophisticated eycs and cars demand. Cornpared to the Amiga, using some other home computers is like watching black and vvhite télévision with the sound tumed off.
The first Amiga software products frotn Electronic Arts are near completion. We suspect you 11 be hearing a lot abuut them. Some of them are games like you’ve never seen before, that get more out of a computer than other games ever have. Others are barder to categorize, and we like that.
For the first rime, software developers --------
have the tools they need to fulfill the promise of home computing.
Two years ago, we said, "We See Farther’’ Now Farther is here.
Retum to Aduntis™
Play Indiana Cousteau, occanic hero. M this three dinveraional simulation under the seven seas
h't détails .iKxjt avaiLibility ht your Amig.i xoflwarc dealer or e.ill us .it (4IÎI S?2-ARfS For a product catalop Sctuî $ 50 and a slaniped, srlf-addrrssed euvelopc to Electronic Arts. Amiga lutalog Offer 2 ? S S Campus Prive. San Mateo, CA 4403 Amiga is a tmdern.irk of Commodore Business Machines Skyfnx. Seven Cines of Gold, Deluxe Video Construction Set Arcticfox, Retum ro Atlantis and Electronic Arts are rradeniarks of Electronic Arts Marble Madness is :t rrademark of Atari Games. Lue
Circle 2 on Reader Service card
fveryone knows that computers are valuable tools in the business environment: word processing, accounting. Forecasting, spreadsheets, database managers, télécommunications, etc. Yet this is just computer jargon until it can be turned into savings in lime, expenses and trouble. Bottomline profits are tbe reason for having compuiers in business, and if you bave to endure weeks of training. Software that doesn't do what you need or a machine that tan t handle the work load, tben the flashy image or tbe prestigious corporate naine on your computer isn't going to mean mueb.
The Learning Curve
The Amiga is ideally suitedfor the office, but unless you know what you re doing, computerizing your business can be exasperating. Here are some hints for mailing that conversion painless and profitable.
Computerizing a business always involves a learning curve. I bat curve can be costly to any business, large or small. The curve can be as simple as learning the coin- mauds of a new piece of software or as complex as figbting a svstem for months before finding out that it was tbe wrong system in the First place. The curve can be complicated by misconceptions aboul just what a computer can and can’t do for a business. Il you are going to be keeping an inventory of 50,000 parts, as vvell as a payroll for 200 employées and tbe books for a two million dollar business, then a microcomputer of anv make is not what you are looking for. If you think that a computer is going to belp you unravel a hope- lessly confused cbeckbook, then liire an accountant to do tbe company books. But if you are willing to do a little learning and don t expert tbe computer to change evervthing overnight» tben there are dozens of good reasons to bring tbe Amiga computer into tbe office, wherever that office is.
Tbe Amiga computer, the ri gbr software and tbe right peripberals will give most businesses a head start. H bas tbe power, speed, peripberals and software to tack- le most business problems, but the Amiga by itsell is not the final answer. Using tbe Amiga as a base, or starting point, tbe person tbinking about using the computer in a business should ask a Few questions.
What sort of memory configuration should 1 start with? Add to tbe total cost of tbe Amiga computer System ali the memorv expansion that you think vou will need, rather than getting the computer with tbe basic 25f»K and then finding out later that you reallv need tbe 512K expansion, or even the 1 MB expansion card from Tecmar. Decidiug how mucb memory you will need is not an easy question to answer. Even for people who are familiar with micros in business. Keep in mind that computers are not cars, and "the more tbe betier” principlc does not always bold true,
Try to base your décision on the software that you plan to use. Most good software will allovv you to expand the memory or hardware configuration (add-on drives, new printers, hard disks, etc.), but some software requires a minimum amount of memory. Read tbe software manuals carefully, because sometimes there is a minimum RAM required to run tbe program, but that ?
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nwcai j-tUi ettœ -ps. n-tu i
doesn't take into ac count the nuniher of files you might want to manipulatc at une time. A spreadsheet may retjuire 128K just to run, but it might only hold a dozen records al a time miless you upgrade to 512K, Considcr the iniportatu différence between “minimum required” and "minimum suggested.’’
A good rule of thumb is "the more information vou wish to work with at 011e time, the more inemory you will need.” Keep in minci that "at une lime” does not mean “at une session." Il is possible to segment your information into groups to be worked on separately.
For example, a mailing list might not need to fit into the computer ail at once. It can be saved on disk as multiple files, A-M and N-Z: then, when you need mailing labels, printing can be clone in two batches. On the other hand, if you are going to need to do a cross- référencé search of that iist, or if you décidé to enter naines according to zip code rather than company naine, then it might be better to have the entire list in the computer at one time.
Roughly speaking. One character equals one byte (il RAM. Cornu on four u> five records per K of inemory. (A record could include company namc, address. Contact person, phone numbers, product description and a few continents roughly 250 characters, counting spaces.) Thafs about 500 records on an unex-
panded Amiga. If you need to put more than 250 characters of information into a record, then adjust aceordiiigly, but keep in mind the size of the program that is going to be working with the information.
A not lier hardware aspect of incorporaiing an Amiga into a business is the periphcrals. Will you need a modem for télécommunications? And if so, what kinds of baud rates will you need? Will vou need auto-answering capabilities for when there is no one in the office to answer the phone? Do you need a Hayes-compatible modem? And most importantly, will the software you choose work with the modem you choose?
Ail of thèse questions requirc entire articles (or even entire issues) to be answered fully. Just remeinber to think about télécommunications when figuring the cost of your system and when buying software. (Someday you may want to transmit files froin your worcl procès- sur or spreadsheet or aceess your database by phone.) Il vou décidé that télécommunications is something you definitelv need, Tecmar makes a 300 1200 2400-baud modem for the Amiga that is worth looking into.
Pick Your Printer
No matter what you plan to do with your Amiga, you will eventuallv want a primer. There is no easy solution to the printer problem, either. First, décidé hovv much work the printer will be doing. For occasional letters or mémos, an inexpensive primer might be ail that you need, but if you plan to senti bulk mailings, then it won kl be worth your while to look into a more expensive industrial-quality printer. If you will be printing graphies, then you will need a dot tnatrix, thermal transfer. Ink jet or laser printer. Black and white or color, near letter quality and amount of usage should ail be taken into considération when choosing one of these printers.
The Amiga can interface with most printers on the market, but not ail software may work with ail printers. (Just because your printer can do graphies, it doesn’t mean that your graph-making program can send the right codes.) What’s your top priority speed, letter quality, price, color, versatility or durability? Again, buying a printer deserves an article ail by itself.
Putting Amiga to Work
You can get do .ens of other periphcrals that you may f'eel vou need for your particular business, and these are only the basics. Depending on what you want your Amiga to do, you may feel that a wide-screen
monitor is a must for business présentations. Or, you may be using the Amiga as a sequence controller and nrr-¦
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Maximillian From Tardis Software Maximillian is a breakihrough design in multidasking, integrated software for the Amiga. Hjeludes MaxtCalc, MaxzWord, MaxiGrapb, and MaxiTerm. Call for availability $ 175.
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terface. If you are designing music videos, then gen- locking devices and frame grabbers may be more important to you tlian modems. If you arc using the Amiga for security or remole measurcmcnts, then remote-sensing periphcrals are what you will be shop- ping for. Whatever the project or task thaï you are ask- ing your Amiga to perform. You should bear in mind the total cost of the periphcrals when you arc tallying ii[ï (lie total price. The computer can hanrile the joli, but you might futd thaï witli the extra costs of add on devices and software thaï il is going to take a fevv years to make up the initial investment.
You can alvvays offset that investment by optimizing the use of the Amiga. You might have bought the Amiga just to print ont invoîces. But think about sorne of the other ways that the computer can help oui. The Amiga is a powerful and versatile computer; locking it into onejob is a waste of valuablc resources. Ask your- self. What areas of the business are répétitive, calcula- tion intensive or graphically oriented? What do you do that involves the printed page in almost any form, stor- ing, sorting or sending information? Most of these things could be doue by the Amiga with the proper hardware, software and sotne common sense.
I lie second major mountain to climb when thinking about piming an Amiga to work for you is picking the right software, Choosing software is not an easy job. The package may look great and the description 011 the hack of the box might make il sound like tliis software will solvc ail your problenis, but il the peuple who wrote the software didn’t think tliat it was the best thing to corne along since flip-lop cans, then they wouldn’t I>c trying to sell it.
It is also easy to be impresscd by a démonstration if it is donc by someone who bas worked with the pro- gram for weeks. Read through the manuals, gel a hands-on démonstration, talk to people who ovvn the program (or others like it), read reviews in magazines, talk to the company (if possible), and then cross your fmgers and hope for the hest.
Fortunately, there are a number of good software developers who are producing software for the Amiga, and with a hit of carefui rcsearch, you have a fighting chance of getting what you are looking for. The Ami- ga’s IBM émulation capahility also greatly enhances the range of titlcs available t > you initially. But these IBM software packages won’t take advantage of the Amiga’s spécial features. Be prepared to get burned at least once. That is an unfortunate fact of computing life. No matter how ca refui or knowledgeable you are, you will eventually end up huying something that will be a dis- appointment. If you are shopping for expensive software, take your tiuic, but also huild the price of a piece of hogus software into your total computer costs. It is not unusual to spend as nuich (or more) rnoney 011 software as you did on the computer itself.
When you do fmd that “perfect” software package, remember that no software will cio absolutely every- thing you necd it to do unless you hire a programmer to develop a custom program and even then it is going to take a while to get il riglu.
Easy Does It
Once you have everything you need to computerize your entire opération, you should take a hall a step backward before you transfer ail your records over to the computer and throw away your ledger books. Think about what would happen if the com[)uter crashcd and ail your files were lost. Keep thinking about that every time you enter new information, and you’ll realize the importance of making hackup copies of everything! Over and over! This is not a waste of time it is insur- ance. Also, you should case into things one step at a time. Don’t try to couvert everything over to the computer ail in the ftrst week. Do one thing first and sec* how it gocs for a while before graduallv giving the Amiga more responsibilities.
A Little Reassurance
The Amiga isn’t going to make each step a snap, but it will save you sorne headaches. It is expandable up to eight megabytes, which means that you should be able to do cjuite a hit without ever worrying about memory. (If you need more than that, then you should be looking at a minicomputer or a rnainframe.) Almost ail the peripherals that you can think of are available for the Amiga, and sorne are designed specifically for the Amiga and no other computer. It will work with almost any primer that you care to buy. The IBM PC emulator software opens up a worlri of business software pro- grarns that have surviveri the test of time.
The Amiga is easy to use, which is going to save you considérable time and effort when you arc ready to start putting the computer to work for you. I he Amiga is less ex pensive than most of the other computers in its league, and ifs huili for future expansion, so your investment will not be obsolète in a year or two or flve. The company is strong, so you won’t be left with a computer that no one is supporting. Since the Amiga is such an easy machine to develop software and hardware for, there will be lots of produi ts to choosc from in the future.
Address ail au finir corres jonderire la Guy Wright, c a AmigaWorld éditorial, SU G me St., Peterborough, NH 03-15,V.
The Right Stuff
The Amiga In the Marketplace
By Douglas Watt
Given the turmoil in the microcomputer market, in which even a giant like Apple is in some serious trouble and many lesser firms are simply folding, one might wonder about the wisdom behind Commodore’s décision to release a 32-bit microcomputer into a section of the market that is currently in upheaval and embroiled in fïerce compétition. One might also legitimately won- der whether any “high-end” microcomputer, including even the Macintosh, can be a success in the business or even the home environment if it bucks the growing MS- DOS software base. Well, in this writer’s opinion, a
Large Addressable Memory
Illustrations by Steven Lyons
¦ more careful look at trends in the marketplace plus a close look at the Amiga and its compétition suggests that Commodore’s décision may have corne at the most opportune moment possible.
First things First there is no compétition for the Amiga in terms of its hardware capabilities in its price range, or even at twice its price. It has, simply, the best graphies this side of CAD stations, and for a fraction of the cost. Its graphies capabilities run circles around both the IBM PC and the AT, which are stuck with the same basic graphies package as the PC for maximum compatibility. The Ami
ga’s graphies are even superior to machines such as the Tandy 2000, which cannot run much standard off-theshelf MS-DOS software due to screen management différences between it and the IBM PC.
Forget about comparing the Amiga’s sound capabilities with any of the MS-DOS machines there is even a greater contrast here than on the question of graphies. Even the Commodore 64 with its Fine SID chip has far better sound capabilities than any of the MS-DOS machines or anything made by Apple, and the Amiga’s capabilities are a giant step up from the 64’s.
The Amiga has been called a color Macintosh, but this statement is misleading since the Amiga has many capabilities that the Mac doesn’t capabilities that were in some sense “designed out” of the Macintosh. First of ail, Commodore did not make the serious design error that Apple made in failing to providc the Motorola 68000 CPU with much support. (The Amiga and Mac both use this chip.) In the Mac, the CPU is forced to handle vir- tually ail of the screen graphies chores and I O opérations, slowing the machine down significantly (one reason why the disk drive for the machine is so slow and why Mac owners spend a lot of time watching the wrist- watch icon). Such is not the case with the Amiga. With its use of co-processors, it is many times faster, plus its drive holds more than twice that of the Mac’s.
Although the marketplace, to the casual observer, might look saturated at this point, it would be more accurate to view it as “soft.” Some signs imply that pockets of potentially intense demand are waiting to be tapped if manufacturers can convince consumers to buy now rather than wait. A brief review of some of the most signiFicant developments over the past two years suggests that the Amiga is in the right place at the right time with the right capabilities. Let’s look briefly at some of these trends:
? The demand for large addressable memory. Although CP M is not totally dead, it clearly is not going to be a popu- lar operating system, and virtually nothing new is being written for it. There is probably one basic overriding reason for this: CP M could not readily run Lotus 1-2-3 due to the limitations in addressable memory of the Z-
80. This, and not speed, is the big advantage that the 8088 family has over the Z-80. (Many Z-80B machines are in fact faster than the IBM PC.)
The trend towards increasingly complex integrated business software has meant that 8-bit computers (at least outside the home) are going to be left behind, since they are forced to use the cumbersome process of bank switching in order to address more than 64K,
Bank switching introduces new problems, such as the issue of a standard for the addressing of the two (or more) banks. Interestingly, the 640K RAM memory limit of the 8088 family, which several years ago seemed astronomical, is now being Filled by some pro- grams and applications, and Intel and Lotus have corn- bined to develop a new hardware software package
(Abovc Board) to extend the addressable meinory of the PC: family to two niegahytes. The Amiga can address 8.5 megabytes without any such add-ons, so it is clearly in the right place on this issue.
? The demandfor a visually-oriented, graphics-supported user interface. The efforts to develop programs such as IBM’s Topview and Digital Research’s OEM illustrate that even vvithin the vvorld of MS-DOS, there is dissatisfaction with the distinctly unfriendly user interface of MS-DOS, with its rather barren “>*’ prompt. MS-DOS
( 1 ike CP M) demands that the user master esoteric and difficult DOS commands to perform common functions such as copving files. Obviously, the impact of the Macintosh (derived from Xerox’s Star system) has set the tone here. It would seem that in this area (i.e., the markefs growing demand for a visually-oriented user interface supported by bit-mapped graphies), that the Amiga is, again, in the right place at the right time with the right stuff.
? The success of open-architecture machines. The success of the Apple II family and of the IBM PC can be traced in part to their open architecture meaning that there is an open processor bus in the machine so that addi- tional boards can be added allowing for relative ease of installation for hard disk drives, co-processor boards, RAM expansion and other inultifunction boards. The sales of the closedarchitecture Apple Ile have not lived up to Apple’s expectations, while sales of the Ile, with its open architecture, have continued to be strong and have not been hui t signifîcantly by the sales of the lie.
A général consensus is growing that the Macintosh has been hurt by its closed architecture. It is a strong plus for the Amiga that its open architecture will allow for spécial co processors, including MS-DOS émulation and even CP M and C-64 emulator boards, so that users can immediately access these existing software bases as well as the more sophisticated software that will take luller advantage of the Amiga’s superior capabilities.
T'his open architecture will also allow for both the future expansion of the Amiga and the active involve- inent of third-party developers, guaranteeing good support for the machine.
? Hardware software symbiosis. There is clearly a very powerful synergistic relationship between hardware capabilities, hardware sales and software support. The linge existing base of MS-DOS software praciicallv guar* antees the continued success of the IBM PC and the PC AT, even if signifîcantly better hardware capabilities are available elsewhere for less money (which. Until the Amiga’s introduction, wasn’t the case). New, truly inno- vative hardware offering unusually great capability in a given price range (or that undercuts the compétition in price) is likely to sell well enough to encourage third- party software writers to turn their attention to the machine.
Open architecture will allow for both the future expansion of the Amiga and the active involvement of thirdparty developers, guaranteeing good support for the machine.
iardware Software Sym biosis
N o compétition exists for the Amiga in terms of its harchuare capabilities in its price range, or even at twice its price.
L'his is exactly what happencd with the Commodore 64 Atari 860 compétition. Ihe Atari initiallv had a bet- ter software base, but as Commodore consistently undercut Atari in a price war during a crucial 18- month period, first-rate software bccame more and more plentiful for the 64. Currently, there is better software support for tbe 64 than tbe Atari, which many companies are now rcluctam to write for due to tbe company*s (and tberefore tbe machinc’s) uneertain future.
I be unique hardware capabilities of the Amiga should ensure strong initial sales of the machine, and su ch sales produce good software support. Indications are that Commodore lias learned from past mistakes in dealing with tbirci parties, and that software developers for the Amiga are being given every considération and meaningful support. Thus, the hardware sales software development “snowbalT should start rolling downbill and pick up speed and momentum quicklv.
I he question of what will bappen to personal computing through tbe laie 80s and early 1990s is certainly open to mucb spéculation, but there are indications that tbe following are going to be big factors:
1. Busincsses and borne users will want to routinely access rnainframes and minicomputers with micros through télécommunications and local area networks (LANs). I bis will lead to incrcased use of large data- bases by tbe so-callcd "power users” (busincsses with large data processing demands) and a growing integra- tion-of-information power ai tbe bands of tbe consumer. It will deniand good terminal émulation software, as well as multitasking capabilities, botb of which will be a brecze for tbe Amiga.
2. In the borne, there will be a trend towards tbe intégration of entertainment Systems and data processing Systems, particularly around their joint access to laser disks that could be used as ROM or even as mass stor- age dcvices for tbe computer, as well as for storing audio video entertainment material. In tbis area, tbe Amiga's ability to mix incoming analog video signais with computer-gcnerated digital video material will place it far ahead of tbe compétition, and, along with its sound capabilities and sprites, will make it tbe grcat- est entertainment computer ever.
8. Low-cost, high-quality dot matrix print will be a standard. New printers using 24-pin printheads bave alreadv taken a real bite out of tbe daisy wbeel primer market, and will make it possible to do botb hi-res graphies printouts and truc letter-quality (not corre- spondence-quality) text on tbe sanie page. I bis new génération of dot matrix printers will take good advan- tage of the Amiga’s bit-mapped graphies capabilities.
Therefore. . .
Aftcr adding ail tbis up, my advice is: If you don’t get an Amiga, you migbt as well at least buy stock in (Commodore. Point for point, tbe Amiga, especially once a large software base exists for it, will Icavc other micros in tbe technological dust.
Address ail author correspondance to Douglas Watt. 17 Grave St.. Natick. MA 01760.
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Amiga knocked our socks off.
Security is important in our business. So writing the tutorial program for the new Commodore Amiga was a spécial challenge.
We couldn’t tell anyone about Amiga graphies. Amiga stereo sound. Amiga power.
We couldn't even say the word Amiga to our closest friends.
Now we can officially welcome Amiga. And greet the readers of AmigaWorld.The only remaining secret concerns the new software we’re about to introduce for Amiga. Mindscape's Keyboard Cadet™and The Halley Project™ are coming soon. So nold on to your socks. And your hat.
Software that challenges the mmd.
Mindscape, Inc., 3444 Dundee Rd., Northbrook, IL 60062
Arrnga is a registered trademark of Commodore Business Machines Keyboard Cadet and The Ha' ey Project are trademarks of Mindscape. Inc. © 1985 Mindscape. Inc. Ali Rights Reserved.
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In Stark Contrast
Comparing the Amiga the Macintosh and IBM PC
By Margaret Morabito
When a pcrsonal computer arrives on the scene. The natural tendenry is to make comparisons. In the case of the Amiga, the most obvions comparisons are drawn between two well-known computers on the retail market today: the Apple Macintosh and the IBM PC.
To dravv a campai ison is to assume similarity. In t h is situation, however, you cannot assume too many simi- larities because the Amiga is a computer with extrcmeJy new technology. As a resuit, any comparison nitist be written and read in perspective. Both the Macintosh and the IBM PC are relatively “old” computers today, and both can "keep up" with the Amiga only through the use of expensive add ons, which are added onto the priée of an already expensive computer. With tliis in mind, let's proceed to a comparative overview of these three personal computers.
Roc es s or s
The Amiga is built arourul the well-known Motorola 68000 microprocessor, which bas becoine the preferred chip for "serions" computers. This 16 82-bit processor
2" Novem ber Dec cm ber 1985
is a powerhouse. But the computer in which it résides must be carefully engineered to allow maximum performance.
I lie Amiga’s design team realized thaï the 68000 microprocessor could become bogged down it it were assignée! Excessive responsibilities. A cjuick session with the Macintosh will rcveal just how slow the 68000 c an perforrn. Amiga’s designers circumvented the problems apparent in the Macintosh by creating three custom chips that take a large portion of the workload frorn the 68000. J lie custom graphies, c ustom animation and I O and audio chips were carefully désignée! WitJi the intention of “freeing up“ the 68000 to run at cl ose to top speeci most of the time while the Amiga nuis wikl with high-resolution color graphies, animation, foui channel sound and multitasking.
Fhe Macintosh lias the henefîr of being powered by the 68000; however, software dcvclopers are siill work- ing very hard to try to make the Macintosh perforrn up to its potential. Whereas (lie Macintosh lias to relv on smart software trie ks to try to keep up with “serions" applications, the Amiga lias more tlian enougli power built inlo its hardware for the most demanding of applications.
The IBM PC', is siill hanging iti there, despile the facl thaï il is l)iiilt amuiul an 8 16 bit mîcroprocessor: the 8088 Intel. The slowness of the IBM PC was graphîcally demonstrated at one of the local Amiga launches held in late July. While emulating the IBM PC and rimning Lotus 1-2-3, the Amiga was noticeably slower than an- other Amiga which was performing multîtasking while running on AinigaDOS. The Commodore spokeswoman shecpishly apologi .ed for the long wait in loading Lotus 1 -2-3, stating that in PC mode, the Amiga “totally émulâtes the IBM PC," induding ils speed, which is substantially slower than the Amiga in native mode.
The Amiga peridnns truc multitasking. Its 68000 pro- cessor is available to perform varions distinct applications sinmltaneously while the three custom chips control other tasks. Until now, this abilitv to do many jobs at once lias not heen available in an under S 10,000 computer. Neither the IBM PC nor the Macintosh can perform true multitasking.
Many computer users have devcloped hehavioral patients based upon the limited capabilities of their per- sonal computers. Until now, users have had tc> wait for their computer to finish one activitv before going on to anotlter task. The IBM PC and the Macintosh force their users to fil their own technologieal limitations.
With the Amiga, however, users will be able to really use a computer. I he Amiga's multitasking capabilities will perform several distinctly différent tasks. I his new freedom from waiting may take a while to get used to; however, it will tnakc one’s work load flow much more quickly,
Computers are at a point where the end user, as well as the software and hardware developers, are deinand- ing options for upward mobility and future development. I he Amiga that is for sale todav is just the lirst in an entire new line of multitasking personal computers and bas been designed with th is future in inind. The microprocessor and custom chips are the most powerful to date; however, Amiga engineers reali .e that todav's aclvanced technology woift be considérée! As such several years from now.
The Amiga is an "open" sysiem. T'his bas several inipor-
16 32 bit
16 32 bit
8 16 bit
16 24 bit
7. 8 Mhz
7. 8 Mhz
4. 77 Mhz
64 k ROM
Txpansion (uscabte RAM)
Up to 512K (external up to 8 MB)
Up to 512K
Up to 640K
Up to 3 MB
1. 2 MB
RUB Composite Color TV
Separate color card1
(black À* while only)
16 colors on one screen
Highest Color Résolution
89 Kevs Nuineric Pad
82 Keys Nuineric Pad
84 kevs Nuineric Pat
Speech Synthesis (huilt-in)
(unlimitcd text to voice)
4 channels- (stereo)
l channel1 (monaural)
I O Ports (huilt-in)
RS 232 Parai le 1
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'No! Included in IBM PC and PC AI Basic nuits.
‘ I’he Macintosh has four software-driven voices, which use over 50% of the processor1 s time.
- 'I'he Amiga lias four hardware audio DMA charmcls» which feed two stereo output ports. The processor is not accessed for snund génération.
A comparative look at the [ratures of the Amiga from Commodore, Apple Macintosh, IBM PC and PC AT.
Tant implications. First, third-pariy engineers arc at work designing pei ipherals that will run directly oll the power supplied by the 1)8000 bus. I lie Amiga’s design team made the 08000 uiicroprocessor easily available to the outside world. In fact. Commodore-Amiga enthusiastically wel- comes the efforts of third partv developers who can niake the Amiga even more versatile for the user.
This attitude and design philosophy is in direct opposition to Apple’s design of the Macintosh. The Macintosh is a "closed” System; it was a fleeting bright spot in computer historv. Quicklv fading because the hardware peripheral industrv had their hands lied. I’he Marin-
tosh’s closed design made it even more difficult for software makers who tried to pump up the image of viability for the Macintosh in this rapidly advancing computer environment.
The IBM PC has been able to thrive precisely because c>1 the fact that it was designed with the ability to accept atld-on raids, Indeed. The PC won’t do anything unless you buy an add-cui card. IBM had a solid marketing strategy in place when il creaied the PC. “Makc it an empty box, and sell the add-ons.”
Businesses that have spetit upwards of $ 7,000 to make their IBM Pcs perfortn now know thaï they would bave been better ofl buying a product that was compleie from the start, and yet, still allowed for op- tional (not required) add-ons. ?
Maxell Corp. of America, 60 Oxford Drive, Moonachic, NJ 07074 Cire le 11 on Reader Service card.
FLOPPY DISKS THE GOLD STANDARD
The Amiga will be a viable computer for years to corne, without relying on older technology.
Commodore-Amiga is alrcady hard at work dcsigning and devcloping the next génération of Amigas, which will hold the (58020 microprocessor and more sophisti- cated custom chips. How does this concern the open architecture and design philosophe of the Amiga-
This means that the S 1,295 to S 1,750 (with RGB ana- log color monitor) that you invest in the Amigas cur- rently being sold will not go down the drain next year, or even five years from now, for that matter. New machines will be upwardlv compatible with existing software and peripherals. DOS enhancements, such as multi-user features, will upgrade existing Amiga compatibilitv.
This is probably the most important différence be* tween the Amiga and other personal computers on the reiailers* shelves today. The Amiga will be a viable computer for years to corne, without relying on older technology and without being ovcrburdened by software that promises to do what hardware should do.
No other personal computer today has four separate sound channels and built in speech synthesis. Certainly, there are computers that can create polyphonie sound through software control and that can speak through an external speech synthesizer module and external software. However, the Amiga provides ail of this within its hardware, ail for the base price.
The Macintosh has one sound channel. And through some sophisticated software, it can produce several voices. But your applications can’t be very demanding. The problem with multivoiced sound on the Macintosh is that over 50% of the (580 00 processors time is bogged down with handling the software-driven voices. Compare this with the Amiga’s four hardware sound channels. Which can perform at fui 1 capability with no time taken from the 68000.
The IBM PC can produce sound; however. It docsn’t have the kitul of truly flexible, pleasing music capability that the Amiga offers. The IBM PC has just a single voice, and there has been very little serions software development in this area since IBM Pcs occupy business offices where the majority of users rely on mono- chromâtic. Alphanumeric. Mute screens.
Graphics and Color
Bv now. The Amiga’s réputation for spectacular color. Graphies and animation is well known. Off-the-shelf. With no add-ons, the Amiga has 4.09(5 colors and the ability to display high-resolution graphies screens of (520 x 4 00 pixels. These are stock, no-frills items within the Amiga. In addition, the expected Genlock (video synch) capability is uni(]iie to the Amiga.
The Macintosh has no color, period. It has a high- resolution monochromatic screen of 512x342 pixels. It provides no options for adding color. Or for increasing the pixel resolution. The Macintosh also has only a 9- inch monitor screen.
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IBM h ad the fores ight to providc for add-on cards to allow users the luxury of color displavs for use with business graphies and design applications. If vour budget allows for an extra S4.300 on top of the base price for an IBM PC computer station, bringing the total expenditure of the color IBM PC to over $ 6,000. Thon von can feel happy in the fact that vou can attain the saine 4.096 color capabiîity as the stock SI.295 Amiga. Furthermore. That $ 6.000 will get you a high- resoïution display of 640 x 480: pretty impressive. But at a rather absurd price for a “small business user.
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Data Storage and Memory Expansion
Even if multitasking. Sound and color aren't important for your primary applications, data storage and memory are of paramount importance to ail users.
How manv text files or Lotus 1-2-3 files can vour com- puter store on its disk drive? How much memory can your computer address?
The Amiga’s built-in 3J(,*inch microfloppy disk drive has twice the capacity of the Macintosh built-in drive and more than twice that of the IBM PC s 5%-inch floppy drive. If you need even more storage. The Amiga has a built-in port for daisv chaining up to three addi- tional drives, for a total of 3.520K of storage.
You can build up extra disk storage on both the Macintosh and the IBM PC, but the problem is that vou will be paying for not just the extra drives, but also for power boosters and adapters.
As for memory. The Amiga can address a contiguous
8. 5 megabytes of memory. As opposed to the 650K of the IBM PC and just 512K of the Macintosh. This means that the Amiga doesn't have to rely on bank switching and can perform at top speed regardless of the size or the number of applications.
And More. ..
This kind of article lends itself to a catalog of comparative items, ail of which reveal the Amiga to be the best personalfbusiness computer available todav. As mentioned at the onset of this article, any comparison has to be put into perspective.
What Commodore has done with the Amiga is to de- bunk the mvth of “expensive means technologically su- perior.” Furthermore. The Amiga gives users a crystal clear message, saving “let our imagination dictate the possible uses of your computer.” The day has arrived when limited technology and exorbitant pricing can no longer be a justification for bland. Mute computing applications.
No doubt there will be many who will ignore the Amiga and who will be satisfied with buying add-on cards for their IBM Pcs. Trying to make them “act” like highly sophisti- cated graphies machines or power workstations. Others will revel in the opportunity to put their Mac in a bag and run across campus. However. There will also be those who will realize that there is more to computing than expensive re- quired add-on cards and cute computer bags.
Address ail author correspondance to Margaret Morabito. R o AmigaWorid éditorial, 80 Pi ne St., Peterborough, NH 03458.
Sophisticated, Stimulating, and System-spécifie
When you use the most sophisticated and exciting computer on the market today, you deserve an equally sophisticated and exciting companion magazine.
Introducing AmigaWorld, published by CW Commun ications Peterborough, the leader in tjual- ity computer publications. It’s the only magazine for Amiga users.
AmigaWorld's cleaiiy written features help new users take full advantage of the newest Commodore. Plus» lively and fully-illustrated articles offer inspiration to everyone who wants to be Creative while learning.
You'll get outstanding color reproduction on high- quality, oversized pages. Instead of a reasonable facsim- ile, you’ll sce trueto-life examples of the Amiga’s color- ful graphies!
Making the Amiga Work For You
With unrivaled graphies and sound capabilities, the Amiga is already in a class by itself. AmigaWorld not only tells you why, it shows you how every incredible feature can work for you.
In each issue, AmigaWorld authors will guide you through a new frontier of computing!
Subscribe to AmigaWorld today and:
• Explore the speed and versatility of the Amiga for home and business applications.
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Amiga’s Trump Card: IBM PC Emulation
By C. Graham
Although the Amiga itself was clearly the star performer at thejuly 2H launch at the Lincoln Center in New York, Commodore’s software émulation of an IBM PC drew its own gasps, skeplical hcadshaking and rounds of applause, as a Lotus 1-2-8 spread- sheet unfolded across the Amiga screen projected on center stage.
ÏBM's continuing consolidation of the PC and PC-DOS as defacto standards for main* stream microcomputer applications forces every new computer on the market, no mat- ter how reniarkable in ternis of price and performance, to confront the issue of PC compatibility. Indeetl, one of Macintosh’s biggest drawbacks in business cnvironments has been ils lack of a bridge to the PC MS- DOS world, a problem exacerbated by the Mac’s closed architecture.
The Amiga, as most revit*wers now agree, is a next génération micro, offering performance (speed, multitasking) and impressive features (color graphies, stereo sound and geniock capability) that will open up new markets. Despite the Amiga’s advantages, however, Commodore needed to address the IBM compatibility issue for several rea- sons. These included the need for a mass of software available on launch to give tlie Amiga strong initial sales momenium and the desire to shake off Cominodore’s “home" computer image in the U.S. by as- suring thaï Amiga owners bave access to the best librarv of serîous business software on the market. Commodore also wanted to ease access to the IBM dominated corporatc (as opposed to small-busincss) market.
To date the most common solution to the problem of incompatible opérâting Systems has been to use dual or multiple micropro- cessors, either buih-in or through an addon card. It is the approach Commodore chose with the C-128, which uses both a 6502 to maimain C-64 compatibility and an addi- tional Z80 microprocessor to run CP M. DEC used a Z80 and an 8088 in the Rainbow.
There are manv companies offering board-level products for both the IBM PC and Apple Ile that give these computers access to other DOS enviromnents. The Sl,195 MacCharlie peripheral from Dayna Communications uses an 8088 to give the 68000-bascd Macintosh IBM compatibility. The problem with ail these dual or multiple processor approaches, especially as a board or peripheral product, îs that it essentially involves building a second computer. The resu Its are ex pensive, kludgev and typically unable to take advantage of the host computers spécial capabilitics,
A Unique Approach
Commodore’s unique approach to the rnutiple DOS problem software émulation rather than hardware duplication repre- sents in many ways as reniarkable a techno- logical breatkthrough as the Amiga itself. Software émulation of another computer operating system is very common in the mainframe world where most of the ven- dors offer IBM émulation, using the enor- mous computing power available on a mainframe to achieve the necessary performance.
Although it is theoretically possible for any computer to emulate another, the performance dégradation woukl typically be so great that the results would be uscless ex- cept as an académie exercise. 'I he Amiga’s unique hardware configurations 16 32-bit 68000, 25 DMA channels and extensive hardware support through the custom VLSI chips for I O and graphies funciions provide the raw computing power necessary to emulate another microcomputer successfully.
Like most of the great microcomputer breakthroughs, Commodore’s IBM PC emu- lator emerged out of a garage opération; in this case, the two-person opération of Sim- ile Research Inc. of New Jersey, headed by Bill I’eal. Féal, who has had extensive mainframe émulation experience, approached Commodore with bis software émulation solution at a time when Commodore was still planning to introduce an 8088-bascd card for the Amiga using ils IBM PC clone tech- nology. (Commodore bas successfully intro* duced the PC 10 and PC 20, IBM PC and
XT clones, in the European and Canadian markets.)
Despite sonie appréhensions about the final produefs viability (after ail. It had never been done before on any micro), the cost advantages of Simile’s approach macle the gamble worthvvhile, and Commodore gave the contract go-ahead for what was essentially a parallcl IBM compatibilitv develop- ment effort. As the various proof-ofconcept and performanace benchmarks were met, Commodore abandoned its internai hardware effort and concentrated cntirely on supporting the Sitnile project. Although there were widespread rumors and reports that Commodore was working on IBM compatibility for the Amiga, the existence of the Simile software product (codenamed “Trumpcard") was known only to a hanclful of senior Commodore executives right up tiutil the night of the launch one of the better kept secrets in a notoriously leaky indus try.
How Does It Work?
Commodore continues to inaintain strict security over how the emulator now called the Amiga Transformer aetually works, on the grounds that it is a proprietary product.* In général ternis, however, the Transformer emulates IBM hardware, not the IBM BIOS or DOS. This means that the software the user can run, including the PC- DOS or MS-DOS operating system, are the standard and unmodified versions of such software.
Technically speaking, the Transformer in- terprets each 8086 instruction, calculâtes the effect address of the operand, and per- forms the opération using the Amiga’s 68000. When the operand of such an instruction is a spécial register or meinorv location that Controls some hardware feature of an IBM PC, the Transformer perforais the équivalent action. This is how the Amiga can run software that is copy pro- tected. The Transformer does not break the copy protection; it merelv replies to the copy protection scheme in exactly the saine way as IBM PC hardware does.
Similarly, software that writes directly to c screen inemory of an IBM PC] works just le, The Transformer knows the range of Idresses that represent IBM PC screen emory and when tlie effective address of i 8086 instruction is in that range, the ransformer performs the équivalent func- an with the display System of the Amiga. Functions of the IBM BIOS are duplicat- i by 68000 code contained in the Transmuer that perform équivalent functions ing the Amiga I O systcm.
The only PC functions not covered by the ransformer are those in the BASIC*A OM. The Transformer cannot run BASIC- programs or programs that dépend on ASIC-A ROM routines a handful of pro* rams oui of the thousands in the IBM brary.
How to Use the Transformer
To use th is IBM émulation, the Amiga wner simply inserts and boots the 3.5" ransformer diskettc and is soon faced with te familiar PC] DOS menu screen. (The .miga is now, to ail intents and purposes, n IBM PC, and the user no longer has ac- ess to the Amiga’s unique features, such as tultitasking or stereo sound.) The user rien inserts an IBM application diskette, us- ng either the Amiga’s internai 3.5" drive or n optional ($ 325) 5.25" drive provided by Commodore, although any standard IBM '60K drive will do.
I he Transformer, which lists for $ 99, ornes with a brief instruction booklet on îow to boot the program. Since the Traits- ormer runs PC DOS unmodified, the book- et does not tell users how to navigate their vTay around the PC]] DOS environment itself. 'ommodotc has wisely decided not to copv- ïrotect the Transformer, so that it is easily itstallable on a hard disk.
Since the Amiga drive is 880K formatted, t is possible to load the 55K Transformer rograin, PC DOS, an application (such as tshton Fat es dBase III), and still have »lenty of roont for data, ail on a single Irive. Most serious users, however. Will buv ither an additional 3.5" drive ($ 295) or an BM format 5.25" drive, or in many cases ioth. Users can swap data and uncopypro- ected programs between the 5.25" and 3.5" Irives at will. For those users who do not ant the bother of waitittg about a minute s data files are transferred from the inter- lal 3.5" drive to the external 5.25", or who lo extensive disk copying, a second 5.25" Irive would be useful, but not necessary.
L’p to three external drives, in any configu- ation, can be daisy chained off the Amiga.)
As mcntioned, the Transformer can run 'C DOS programs formatted on 3.5" disettes (e.g., software for the Data General
One) or on a standard 5.25" format. Although the 3.5" Data General One diskettes
are not widely available, IBM is widely ru-
mored to be considcring the 3.5" format for the PC’s eventual replacement. Recently, Microsoft announced the 3.5" formaiting protocol that it would support uiuler MS DOS, and t h is is the protocol that the Transformer supports.
The advantages of the software émulation approach are low cost and conveniencc,
I lie disadvantage is that some performance is lost, even with the Amiga. The Transformer offers comparable speed to an IBM PC for disk opérations, 50% of speed for most I O functions, and comparable or su- perior speed for many graphies functions, lit computationally-imensive instructions, such as bit-shift opérations, performance on the Transformer is noticeably slower. For applications where performance is largely constrained by the speed of keyboard input (e.g., word processing), the performance dégradation is minimal. For large spread- sheets, performance is noticeably slower.
Commodore has not officially stated what level of PC coinpatibility the Transformer will provide, beyond saying that it will run the top 25 programs on the Softsel hit list, as well as other “selected” programs. Internally, the targeted compatibility is “at the Compaq level.” Since the top 25 programs probably account for 80% of ail PC software sales, this will more than cover the needs of the average Amiga user. Among Commodore’s list of “selectecT programs are integrated packages like l'he Software Group’s Enable; communications packages such as Microsoft’s Access, as well as VT 100 terminal émulation programs and even the new Wang word processing program for the IBM PC. In ils IBM émulation mode, tlte Amiga can also fit un* obtrusivelv into any local area network (LAN) supporting IBM Pcs. This means that out of the box, the Aniiga as-PC-clone will be able to sidestep the obstinacy in corporate America that has crippled the Mac's acceptance as a serious, networkable office computer.
Release 1.0 of the Transformer runs most IBM programs that do not require an IBM graphies card. Lotus 1-2-3, for example, does not require the graphies card for gen- erating its charts and graphs. Release 2.0, scheduied for early November, will cover graphics-card dependem programs, includ- ing such compatibility “litmus test” programs as Microsoft’s Flight Simulator. Release 2.0 will be provided for a nominal fee (around $ 10) to existing owners of Release 1.0 who send in their warranty cards.
Theoretically, a PC emulator could be done for any micro. As noted earlier, it is the Amiga’s unique hardware capabilities that make this a worth while effort. Now that the concept has been proven, there are bound to be other software émulation at- lempts on other micros. The most likely émulation products, however, will probably corne from Commodore itself. For the Amiga. The two most obvions émulation candidates are Commodore’s own C-64 C- 128 products, and the Apple II line, both of which could be relatively easily emulated on the Amiga, If Commodore does intro- duce C-64 compatibility for the Amiga, it will provide an upgracle path that would al- low Commodore users to keep their software base (both programs and data) as they upgrade from a C-64 through the C-128 to the Amiga. However, running most older 8- bit programs on the Amiga is likely to be of minimal utility.
Whether the Transformées overall performance level is acceptable is largely dépendent on the spécifie application needs of the Amiga user. For the occasional user, or for the rcgular PC user who does not require fréquent use of large spreadsheets, the Transformer will satisfy most needs.
For those Amiga owners who need fréquent access to “power” applications, Commodore will introduce a performance enhancer for the Transformer in the form of a $ 200 hardware accelerator. The acceler- ator, which will be available in November 1985, is a slim sidecar module that clips onto the 68000 expansion bus on the side of the Amiga, The module consists of static RAM chips and a custom PAL (Program As- say Logic) chip no microprocessor. With the accelerator, Commodore believes that the Transformer will be able to achieve comparable or superior performance for most PC programs, including computation* ally-intensive ones.
Thus, for the price of a piece of good business software such as Symphony, Amiga owners can buy the Transformer ($ 99), accelerator module ($ 200) and an additional storage drive (S395) that turns the Amiga into an IBM PC.
* Commodore is presently rcleasing only Beta units of the product. We’ll have a full review in an upcomîng issue. Fds.
Address ail aitthor carrespondence to C. Graham, c o AmigaWorld éditorial, 80 Pine St.,
Peterborough, NH 03458.
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rhe Bottom Line
n Introduction To Spreadsheets
y Vahé Guzelimian
F. vcry nighi after his restaurant closes, Mr. Luciano es to his office, tvn ns on lus Amiga ancl mus a ircadsheet. He types the clay's sales numbers, the langes in price of h is ingrédients, and h is new : penses. I'he numbers go into a grid of cells. The col- uns of the grid represeni time periods, such as onths and quarters; the rows represeni revenues and tpenses. Moments later he examines a printout that jows how much profit he made that day, so far for iis quarter and so far for this year. Since it is the end f the quarter. He gets a summary printout of the quarts results (as shown in Figure 1).
Pas ta and Profits
“Lefs look into the future" he says. “If the price of Il mv supplies goes up about 14 percent for the rest of ie year, my employées’ salaries go up 7 percent, and 1 eep prices the sanie, what will my profit be?" Moments iter, the answer appears on the screen.
He wonders how much more profit he would make ach quarter if he raised the price of his most popular ish, Pasta cl Pesto. Bv 22 percent. After a few more ntries. He gets the answer $ 2,10(1. Confident that finaud will remain unaflected by the increase in ricc. He inakes a note to inform the print shop to îclude the change in the next priming of his menus.
Mr. Luciano was able to perfonn thèse tasks with his miiga and a spreadsheet program that he decided was u* hest suited for lus business. He had quite a choice I spreadsheet programs: Calcraft, an "entry level" preadsheet: Enable Galc, a more advanced package; vmphony, Framework and 1 -2-3 lanious IBM PC pro- ranis which he could run on his Amiga with the IBM C emulator software disk. With a little checking and ome good advice. Lie made his choice. (WYlt review these roducts in later issues Eds.)
He isn't an accountant, and he’s never studied busi- ess or finance, and be’s eertainly not a computer pro- ranimer. But with a little study, he mastered spreadsheet ing."
His accountant used to handle every aspect of his
• usiness accounting. Whetiever he wanted to find oui iow things were doing, he would call his accountant. Everal davs later, he would receivc his answer. Ancl at the end of the inonth, an invoice, Today, the accouru tant is Mr. Luciano’s consultant. Once a inonth the accountant has a complinientary meal at the restaurant; once a year, lie helps Mr. Luciano with his taxes to return the favor.
What is a Spreadsheet?
A spreadsheet is an environment very similar to the ledger sheets traditionally used by accountants and hookkeepers. Il is made up of cells on a grid of rows and columns. When you start a spreadsheet program, ail you have is empty cells. By determining what those cells are to contain, you croate a "template” that will carre out a spécifie task for you. A cell can contain a label, such as the heading “Gross Profits," a number, a formula, or a référence to the contents of another cell. Bv inaking entrics into the cells, you can build a modcl for your particular business; each factor affecting the business is entered into the spreadsheet to croate a financial simulation of the business, This model can imitate the financial responses of a business so well that it can make prédictions and projections of future business activité.
Flexibility and Power
One verv important aspect of spreadsheets is their flexibility, I liey can be used for any task that requires calculations based on rclationships between numbers, Adaptable to any particular or unique business, they of 1er 1 imitless potential for managers and people who run srnall businesses.
A spreadsheet program's main strength is its ability to carrv out automat ic recalculai ions of your data. Sup* pose voit enter the accounting for your business for
1985. If vou later make changes to any of the numbers, vour spreadsheet will autoinatically recalculate ail tolals and anv other mathematical functions in the sheet that use those numbers. You never have to touch a calculator.
Luciano’s Ristorante, 1985
= = = = = = =
= = = = = = = =
= = = = = = = = =
= = = = = = = =
Figure 1. A sample spreadsheet rom I.ucitmo's Ristorante.
Luciano's Ristorante, 1985
= SUM(RC[-3]:RC[-1 ])
= SUM(RC[-3]:RC[-1 ])
= SUM(R[-2]C:R[-1 ]C)
= SUM(R[-2]C:R[-1 ]C)
= SUM(R[-2]C:R[-1 ]C)
= SUM(RC[-3]:RC[-1 ])
= SUM(RC[-3] RC[-1 ])
= SUM(RC[-3]:RC[-1 ])
= SUM(RC[-3]:RC[-1 ])
= SUM(RC[-3]:RC[-1 ])
= SUM(RC[-3]:RC[-1 ])
= SUM(RC[-3]:RC[-1 ])
= R[-11 ]C-R[-2]C
= R[-11 ]C-R(-2]C
= R[-11 ]C-R[-2]C
= R(-11 ]C-R[-2]C
20 | 21
Figure 2. The
sa me sbreadsheet with f annula.
3 S Sovember December I9S5
Once you enter a model of your business into the spreadsheet, you can do “what if” tests. By estimating an increase in your gross sales for 1985, you can sce instanlly what your profits and tax 1 iabililies will be and niake projections.
Spreadsheets are only empty cells until you enter labels, values and formulas to tap their potential power. Because of their flexibility, they can be used as tools for performing a wide variety of tasks. Herc are some coin- mon uses for spreadsheets in the office and the home.
? Général ledger
? Accounts receivable accounts payable
? Inventory management
? Auto expense or téléphoné logs
? Atlvertising expense analyses
? Loan amortizations
? Job cosling
? Product planning
? New business budgeting
? Balance sheets
? Income statements
? Home budgeting
? Managing bank accounts
? Complet ing State and Fédéral tax forms
? Managing home inventory for insurance purposes
? Tracking such investmenis as stocks, options, bonds and muiual funds
? Managing collectibles such as stamps, coins and books
? Completing statements of net worih Fecit ures
Spreadsheets aren't just cells that can hokl numbers and niake calculations. The évolution of spreadsheets from their first appearance in 1978 has resulted in the development of a multitude of features that niake them very powerful and easy to use.
Automatic Formulas. Most of the better spreadsheet programs offer a menu of formulas commonly used in business and finance. Instead of typing in each formula from memory, you can simply choose the one you want and the formula appears in the cell of your choice.
Most programs offer the following types of formulas:
? Matbematical formulas, from suni and absolute value to rounding and logarithmic formulas.
? Trigonométrie formulas such as sine and tangent.
? I.ogical formulas such as if, false and true.
? Financial formulas, such as the présent value ol a sériés of payments or effect of periodic interest rate.
? Statistica! Formulas such as mean, standard déviation and standard error.
? Spécial functions that allow you to look up numbers stored in tables in separate parts of the spreadsheet,
Of course, you Te not lirnited to available formulas, You can build any formula you want. Some spreadsheets even let you add your cuslom formula to the menu, so you never have to type it in again.
Absolute or Relative Cell Référencés. Spreadsheets can refer to a cell in two ways. By naming the row and col- iinin number of a cell, you niake an absolute reference to il. Or, you can refer to a cell by its position relative to the currently selected cell. For example, if you want to refer to a cell that is 21 rows up and two columns to the Icft of the selected cell, you can refer to it in a code such as R[ 21]C[ 2], Formulas made up of relative cell référencés can be copied from place to place in the spreadsheet while maintaining the validity of the formula. In the sample spreadsheet in Figure 2, ail the totals for the quarter were calculated with the same relative formula: SUM(RC[ - 3]RC[ - 1]). As soon as the f irst one is calculated, ail you have to do is copy the formula in ail the other cells to get the correct formulas for the other sums.
Many programs give you the freedom of not having to type in the cell reference by its column and row number. When you want to enter a reference to a cell into a given cell, you can just point to the cell you want to refer to and click the mouse button. The celfs relative reference is then entered into the selected cell. You can even mark a range of numbers for adding a column of numbers, for cxample by dragging the mouse cursor across the range. The relative range reference ts
automatically entered into your formula. ?
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Linking Spreadsheets. Sonic spreadsheet programs offer a great deal of power by allowing the user to make links between several spreadsheets. For exaniple, a number generated in one spreadsheet can be entered automatically into a cell in a second spreadsheet. If a cell value changes in the original spreadsheet, the cells that dépend on this cell s value in the second spread- shect are automatically updated.
"Macros." Once you become proficient at using spreadsheet programs. You'll find that there will be times when you will want to carry out an opération that involves entering a long string of commands. Sonic spreadsheet programs allow you to make the press of one or two keys represent a long string of commands. These “macros" can save you a great deal of lime.
To satisjy your business needs, intégrât ed spread- sheet packages offer com- panent s that work in harmony, such as a spreadsheet, graphics, word processing, dala- base management and teleco m m u n ications.
Work ing with Other Programs. Spreadsheet data can be transported to other applications such as charting or word processing programs. A chart prograni. For example, allows you to croate colorful business graphies from the generated data. With a caméra, you can croate effective slides of pie charts and scatter diagrams for vour tiext slide présentation.
You can also use spreadsheet programs to collcct eut- rent stock market quotations over the phone. Thèse programs link with the spreadsheet yoifve designed and automatically dial the number of the quotation service. Get the information you require and analyze it with your spreadsheet. If the spreadsheet model is well designed, vou may be able to spot t rends and act (juickly to make a profit. This can help you become independent of brokers for making investment décisions, saving you money on brokerage commissions and giving you greater control of your investments.
Intégration. Sonie spreadsheets go even further by pro- viding the word processor and charting capabilities within the spreadsheet itself. In this way, you can use your model to get calculations, and then, at the click of the mouse button, view your data in chart form, with* out having to exit the program to start a separatc charting prograni.
The larger integrated packages offer up to five corn- ponents that can work in harmony to satisfy most of your business needs. The components are usually a spreadsheet, graphies program, word processor, data- hasc manager and télécommunications package. An application of their combined use might be:
? The spreadsheet is used to analyze financial data.
? The graphies component charts the data from the spreadsheet.
? The datahase program tracks lists and créâtes reports that may include data from the spreadsheet.
? The word processor préparés letters containing ranges of mimbers from the spreadsheet and a chart that represent s tliis data from the graphies component.
? I he télécommunications component zaps the letter to an associa te.
Protection. Once created, a model has cells in which numbers must be entered. Ail other cells that make up the model are labels or formulas and should not be altered. Most spreadsheet programs offer a protection feature to let you protect the cells containing labels and formulas so they can’t be accidentally changed. A pass- word is required to reverse the protection. A protected document usually doesn’t display cell division marks or row and column numbers. When a number is entered into a data entry cell, pressing the Enter kev will take the cursor to the next data entry cell, prompting the user to enter another value or to press Enter to go on to the next unprotected cell.
You don t have to spend hours developing models for the dozens of practical applications you may find for your spreadsheet program. There are a number of books available with sample spreadsheet models for home and business use. By entering these models, you’ll learn a loi more ahout how spreadsheets work. If you don't have the time or desire to enter your own models, you can purchase readv-to-use models on disk from many software manufacturers. These models can then be customized for your spécifie needs,
Belbre he boughl bis Amiga, Mr. Lueiano thought a spreadsliect was someihing you put on a bcd. Xovv he speaks of bis business as having two stages before and after spreadsheets.
Address ait author correspondence to Vah'e Guzelimian at ED- l ’C.OMP C.omputer Senne es, 21 39 Newcastle Ave., C.ardiff by the Sea, CA 92007.
40 November Decembn 19S5
Amiga Draw !
A Drafting and Design Tool for the Commodore Amiga™
Aegis Development, Inc. brings creativity to your fingertips! Use Amiga Draw to create accurate and detailed drawings of anything your mind can imagine and then transfer those images to plotters, printers, and other output devices. Amiga Draw was designed specifically for the Amiga and takes advantage of ail the unique and powerful graphies capabilities that make this computer so spécial. You can work on several drawings at the same time using différent Windows. You may zoom in on an image, or open a new window to observe détail while keeping the overall view of the drawing. Accuracy for the drawing is within T -2,000,000,000 points! Flexible? Sure! Mark an image and store it
- or delete it, scale it, rotate it, what- ever! Amiga Draw puts you in charge.
Amiga Draw also supports layer-
Circle 12 on Reader Service card
ing of a drawing You may break up a drawing into various components allowing ail or selected pièces of the layers to appear. A house plan can be broken into electrical, plumbing, and structural layers. The layers can appear in différent colors, overriding the colors of the individual graphie éléments.
Mouse, Keyboard, or Tablet input with pull down menus is provided. Amiga Draw allows you to set the physieal scale for the output device, and create scaled drawings for architecture, engineering, and charts. Plotting can occur in background mode allowing you to keep working on another drawing. Plotters from HP, Epson, Comrex, and others are supported.
Mistakes? Accidentai deletion can be reversed using the UNDO function. Expand your creativity by passing your
Amiga Draw image into a paint system to add flare and solid image fills.
So, if you’re serious about your Commodore computer, don’t you think you owe it to yourself to get the most out of it? With Amiga Draw, your investment can last a lifetime!
P. S, Don’t let your friends use Amiga Draw - you’ll never get your computer back if you do!
For the dealer nearest you, call
Aegis Development, Inc,
2210 Wilshire Blvd. Suite 277 Santa Monica, CA 90403
Amiga Draw is i iraJrirufk of Acgi» DcwlsipmctU Amiga isa traJcnvaiL ot Commodore Computrr Epson is i tuJcmarV ot Epson Ameflti
By Matthew Leeds
Digital image processing is a rapidly growing field with virtually unlimited applications. The Amiga and a digitizer will bring this new technology within the reach of businesses, art studios, schools and even homes.
You sec digitized images ail around you today. Most of ihe time. You don't even recognize thcm as such. Many of the phoîographs in newspapers are delivered by news agencies over a téléphoné line using a digitiz- ing scanner, and then reconstituted on the receiving end. If you ve purchased a télévision in the last year, you might have a digital set. These technologically advanced entertainment centers offer digital stereo sound, the abilitv to zoom an image on the screen and split-screen options, allowing you to watch two pro- grams at ihe same time. Digital image récognition is used în manufacturing, process control. Astronomy. Médical X-rav analysis and cartography.
Until a few years ago. Digital image processing was very expensive. Equipment started at $ 30,000. In fact. There were no Systems available for personal computers until manufacturer were able to utilize new technologies to allow medium-resolution svstems at moderate
prices. Low-end Systems now start at $ 250, and good high-end svstems are below $ 10.000.
These faîling prices can be attributed partir to the increased use of graphies in business. Executives are using more computer-generated and or computçr- enhanced images in their présentations, and they are looking for cost-effective means of producing them. Many are still going to professional computer graphies suppîiers. But larger companies have started bringing their production in-house. This has several benefits: faster turn around times. More control over the fin- ished image, security of sensitive data and better cost Controls.
Amiga brld 43
I'he use of digitizing equipmeni allows end users to input artwork from a varietv of sources, and then mod- ifv or enhance it. Images in digital form can be manipu- lated in ways that traditional image creation techniques are unabie to duplicate. Thereby saving hours of répétitive and costly labor.
Digitally-created images are being seen more and more. Several recent science fiction movies have used digitally-created imagerv: Dutie, 2010, Blade Runner and The Last Starfighter. Télévision commcrcials are also using digital images to sell products. The premier exarn]>le of this was the commercial for the Canned Food Information Council that ran during the 1985 Super Bowl. It featured a computer-generatcd female robot moving and speaking with human-like smooth- ness. Other examples inclnde the opening to a BBS spécial on Vietnam and most automobile ads.
Images in digital fnrm eau he manipulated m ways thaï traditioual image-création tech n iques are unabie to dupUcate. Thereby saving hours of répétitive and rostl la bar.
The Technology' of Video
However, there is a différence between images cre- ated bv a computer and those created with a video caméra. The process of converting images created with a video caméra or other video source to something a computer can utilize is called digitizing. To understand whv we need to couvert from a video source, we First need to understand the underlying technology of video.
Ail video used in the United States conforms to a set of standards called RS-170 NTSC. There are other standards used elsewhere in the world (e.g., PAI. And SECAM), but we will confine our discussion to NTSC.
Just about ail computers todav use a video display called a cathode ray tube, or CRT. Most CR I s use a technology called raster Scan to produce an image. Ail CRTs contain at least one electron gun, used to “paint" the image on the inside of the glass face of the CRT. Monochrome displays use onlv one gun, and color dis- plays use three. The electron beam is directed by the display controller in the computer.
Imagine yourself holding a can of spray paint, and standing in front of a blank wall. Starting in the upper- lcft corner, you begin to paint a straight line towards the right. To make the paint thicker and tlu* image brighter, you press barder on the nozzle. When you get to the edge of the wall, stop pressing the nozzle and move your arm back to the left side of the wall. Start paint ing just helow the line where von started. Keep painting une il you have painted 202'I-, lines. This is one field of the display. Now go back to the top. There’s a gap between cach line. Fill in each gap, one at a time. This is the second field of the display, and it complétés one frame. Don t forget you have to complote each field in of a second. Also. Venir paint fades in less than a second, so don’t stop painting. This is how a monochrome monitor works. For color, get two friends with différent colors to help you paint. Irv not to tan- gle your arms.
That is the essence of rastet'-scan technology. I’he paint spray is the electron beam. The wall is tlie inside of the CRT and you are the display controller. I’he N I'SC standard uses 202'L. Lines in each field. By inter- lacing two flelds, it is possible to creatc a resolution of 525 lines on the screcn. For higher resolution, we require a différent technology.
I'he NTSC signal combines the information for the three colors in a single signal. Bv separating these into three, and sending them individually, we can increase the résolution signifkantly. This separated information is called RGB. After the rcd. Green and blue signais that arc its components.
Ail of this information is sent to the CRT in analog form (i.e.. as a voltage level that varies depending on the hrightness of the image and in sync with the horizontal and vertical scanning puises). These puises are sent each time the raster finishes a horizontal or vertical scan. And they tell the electron gun to turn off until il retut us to the left edge of the scrccn and moves clown one scan line (for horizontal) or to the top of the screen (for vertical). The screcn is composée! Of phos- phors that glow when struck by the electron beam.
Each point of Iight is called a pixel, or picture élément.
I he intensity of the beam Controls the hrightness of cach pixel.
The display controller couverts the bit-mapped display ol your computer into an analog signal that vour T * or monitor can display. However. It cannot couvert an analog signal back into a bit map. This is whv vou need a digitizer (also known as a "frame grabber”).
Another naine for a digitizer is an analog-to-digital convciter, because it couverts the analog video signal to a digital signal. The analog signal is a wave with highs and lows. The convcrter looks at. Or samples, the analog signal, and if it is at a high. It secs that as an "on" hit. Il it is at a low, it sees that as an “off" bit. Sampling onlv for high or low will result in onlv a black-and- white image. For more colors or a grav scale, voit need to sample the sanie pixel several times with a graduatcd threshold. Kach graduated level corresponds to a color or grav scale in the final image. The threshold level should he adjustahle through cithcr hardware or software. This sampling goes 011 at a ver y fast rate. To sam- pie cnongh information for a screen with a resolution of 640 x 400 pixels in black and while would require 256,000 samplcs in ‘C, of a second, To store this image would require 32K of RAM. If you wanted to capture a 16-color image, you would need 128K RAM. The bit samplcs are usually stored in a matrix, with each screen line of the image in one row of the matrix and the sampled bits in the columns.
There are several tradeoffs évident here. To get higher resolution requires a higher sampling rate. This requires more RAM in which to store the information and a system that can display that resolution. I he saine tradeoff occurs as you add more colors to the image. At a resolution of 640 x 400 pixels, black and white needs 32K RAM, four color needs 64K RAM, and 16 color needs 128K RAM. That’s for one image. Imagine trying to digitize and store a one-hour film on disk at 24 frames per second. Think of it. A 16-color movie woulcl require 128K x 24 frames x 60 seconds x 60 minutes. That’s over 11 gigabytes of memory!
There are other considérations. Not onlv does the
digital convertcr need to calculate a hrightness level for each pixel, it also must assign a coordinate for each pixel. This information is then passed to the computer. There arc limits to how fast the information can be transferred. If the digital converter does not have its own RAM in which 10 store the memory map, it is usually not possible to couvert a video image in one scan. By using successive scans, and sampling différent sections of the image in each scan, it is possible to transfer information at a rate the computer can handle. This could resuit in a smeared image due to changes from scan to scan. 80111c slow scan Systems may take as long as a minute to digitize an image.
For many applications, you may want to use the computer as a source of graphies to combine with video. Although it is possible to digitize a frame, add your graphies to the image and then record it back to tape, this lias many limitations. It will only work with still images, the résolution may hc lowercd, and it will be diffieuh to combine graphies with preexisting video- tape. The simple answer to this problem is to overlay the compuier-generated image 011 to the video image in real-timc. This requires hardware that has gendocking capability.
Video signais require complex timing and synchro- nizing. Horizontal drive, vertical drive, hurst flag, subcarrier, color frame 1D puise and blanking are sorne of the signais. Every video source has its own generator for these signais, and to combine two video sources, the timing must be “locked" together. If the two sources are not “in sync," you could have one source trying to start a raster scan at the top of the screen while the other is already halfway down. With two signais trying for con- trol of the electron beam, the display controller would develop schizophrenia. This locking is usually accom- plished by using a sync or gendock generator. You must also have a gen-lock input on your video equipment.
With the proper software and a gen-locked digitizer. You can perform dissolves, wipes, overlays, blackouts, fades and a variety of other spécial effccts. Using several video decks, it would be possible to create a coin- puler-controlled video-editing system.
Over the last 18 inonths, several manufacturers have relcased digitizing hardware for a variety of machines. AU of these Systems indude sorne software, and a few ofter high-level applications packages. The most inter- esting discovery I made after looking at ail these Systems was that prices are falling dramatically at the saine time that capability is expanding.
There are several Systems available for the Commodore 64. The Digi-Cam from Cardco is a combined blac k-and-wlnte video caméra and digitizer. Software is included to enhance or print the image and transmit it over a modem. Computereyes from Digital Vision is a hardware software package with three scanning modes. (There is also a version of Computereyes for the Apple II family.) The MicronEye from Micron Technology uses an OpticRAM caméra and an interface board. Software is included to save and display black-and-white or gray-scale images and print them with Epson Gemini printers.
Koala Technologies has a product for the Macintosh called Macvision. This is a hardware software svstem that attaches to any video source and créâtes a gray- scale image in five seconds. The ThunderScan from Thunderware is an unusual dcvicc that attaches to the Macintosh primer. It replaces the ribbon and uses the printer to slowly advance a document or artwork through the platen as it scans the image.
For many applications, y ou ma y want to use the computer as a source of graphies to combine with video.
The most sophisticated applications for microcomputers are currently running on IBM Pcs. Imaging Technology* offers a full line of imagc-processing hardware and software. Their PC Vision Frame Grabber offers 256-level gray-scale, or 16 million pseudocolors. It also has full gen-locking capability to a variety of video sources. Chorus Data Systems also has a professional- level system for image digitizing, called the PC-Eyc
Amiga's 4 channels of stereo give you a sound advantage
Amiga's 4,096 colors give your business graphies a visible cdvantage.
Learning on Amiga is higher éducation,
" Arriga is o trademark of Commodore-Amigc, inc “ Macintosh is a trademark licensed to Apple Computer inc. * IBM is a registered fredemerk of internationcl Business Machines, inc @ lo'us is c registered trademark of Lotus Development Corporation « dBase is c registered trademerk of Ashton Tate ire s 1985. Commodore Electronics Limited
LOT OF COMPETITION. JNFAIR ADVANTAGE.
Nobody ever said it was going to be easy. But if just got easier. Now, there's Amiga.’" The first and only computer to give you a créative edge.
Amiga makes you look betîer, sound better, work faster and more productively. It can be your number cruncher, filing System, audio-visual department, graphie designer, print shop and faitnful workhorse.
You can't buy a personal computer at any price that has ail of Amiga's features. Nor can you find one thafs easier to use. Amiga lefs you point at symbols instead of learning compli- cated commands.
Amiga is friendly but ifs a power- house, too. It has twice the memory of Macintoshor IBM® PC. It costs less than either of îhem and can do every- thing they can do, better; because Amiga is more Creative.
No other personal computer gives you over 4,000 colors, stereo sound and incredible dimension. Imagine the advantage of preparing business présentations with color graphies and sophisîicated animation right on your computer
Need to make Creative use of your time? Amiga can do as many as four or five things at once in separate Windows on fhe screen. Not just display îhem. Work on them. No other personal computer can.
Amiga will print the cover mémo whiie you're working on a spreadsheet. And there's probably enough power left over to receive a phone message or a stock quote over a modem at the same time.
Amiga is iBM-compatible, îoo. A simple piece of software teaches Amiga to emulaîe the IBM operating System, so you can run most IBM programs. You'll have instant access to the largest library of business software in the world, inciuding favorites like Lotus® 1,2,3 and dBase®
And since Amiga is the last computer you'll want to buy, it was oniÿ fair to make it endlessly expandable and adaptable. You can plug in print- ers (almost any kind), joysticks, your video recorder, video caméra, modems, musical keyboards, draw- ing pads, extra disk drives. You can even expand the memory to a whop- ping 8 megabytes.
Amiga will talktoyou, read back what you wriîe, answer your phone and compose music like a profes- sional synthesizer. It can add new creativity to your iife and bring new life to everything you create.
See an Aufhorized Amiga Dealer near you. Now that Amiga is here, the question isn't whetheryou can afford a computer, if is whetheryou
can afford to wait.
Amiga by Commodore
AMIGA GIVES YOU A CREATIVE EDGE.
Video Capture Board. It has resolution up to 640 x 512 in black and white, and il is supported by several applications packages.
For those svstems that do not have gen-locking capa- bilitv, there are several manufaeturers offering stand- alone dcvices l'or overlaying computer-gcneratcd graph- ics and video. Yaliant I.M.C. markels the Telecomp
1000. 1 h is mixes any two NTSC video sources and out- put.s a single signal in NTSC video, or RF-modulated for display on a télévision set.
An Amiga Digitizer
A digitizer for the Amiga has been cleveloped by an Oakland, California company called A-Squared. (Andy Warhol usecl this digitizer to "paini" Deborah Harry’s portrait al the Amiga’s début at Lincoln Center.) It plugs into the expansion bus and has an optional externat power supply. Vou could plug in more than one digitizer and do dissolves, wipes and other effects from one source to the other, Input from any composite video source caméra, computer, laser-disk player or VCR is acceptable, There is also an RGB input.
T he addition of visitai images can make the différence betweeji just an- other repart and a ram piete presen ta t ion.
The digitizer is capable of storing an image with cight Icvels of gray, in 320 x 200 resolution. There are plans to allovv for the capture of a 32*color image, and there's also talk of software to allovv for 640 x 400 in 16 colors. A-Squared plans to release a sériés of programmer's tools to easc the création of applications software. These will include drivers for the hardware, overlay and false-color routines, moving Windows, graphies overlays and full file structure information. There will also be routines for capturing a set of images over time.
The design of the Amiga digitizer is unique. It contai ns no on-board RAM, and yet il can digitize in real- time. This is in part due to the speed of the Amiga’s microprocessor, which runs at exactly twice the fre- quency of standard video signais. Since the bit map is stored in RAM in the Amiga, il is possible to capture more than one image at a time. In fact, you are limited only by the atnount of RAM and the size of the image you are grabbing. It is possible to store about one second of teal-timc images and view them in sequence. It is also possible to capture images using a timc-lapse technique.
I lie Amiga digitizer works by sampling a video field every of a second. It then couverts the analog signal to a bit map, called a bit plane. It takes three fields to give cnough information for an eight-level gray-scale. Each pixel is controlled by three bits, one from each bit plane. This would rc(|iiire ’L(J of a second to complété the three scans neccssary for an image, but the software retains the existing bit planes and updates each one as the scan is completed, on screen and in real-time. If a bit changes, the gray scalc for that pixel changes.
The software included with the digitizer stores information in a file format that is compatible with the Graphicraft paint program from Amiga, This format
could hecome a standard, with ail other software devel* opers créât ing applications using it. It takes 24K to store one digitized screen, so vou can Fit over 30 on a single disk.
The Amiga digitizer is due out in Oct. *85; the price, though not yet official, will bc around S200-$ 250.
I hank.s to ils open architecture, A-Squared was able to use the Amiga’s unique hardware capabilities and produce a produit with professional features unheard-of in its price range.
A-Squared is looking at several applications for the Amiga digitizer. One area of interest is the création of color séparations for silk screen. T-shirt and other medium-resolution printers. The svstems now in use cosl over $ 20,000.
Thermal studies using an infrarecl caméra are useful diagnostic tools in sports medicine. Injured joints show up botter than the surrounding tissue. An Amiga, digitizer and thermal caméra would bring the cost clown to a level thaï a small clinie could afford.
Other uses Ibr digital image processing are limited onlv bv your imagination and your pockethook. The addition of visual images to a business report can make ilie différence between just another report and a complété présentation. Visual databases can be used for inventory-control purposes, allovving an operator to vis- uallv match a stock item without knowing its part num- ber. Farts supplicrs could offer electronic catalogs of their products, on disk with an integrated ordering application. Updates could be easily added without the cost of reprinting a paper catalog. In fact, they could be sent over the téléphoné lines via modem.
Real-estate listings could he available on-line and include pictures of the properties. Lot size, lloor space, âge and condition of each building could be listed, as well as information on current loan costs and comparables. Financial calculai ions on monthly payments, prop- crtv taxes, insu rance and closing costs could be added to a pi intout of the property for prospective buyers to study at their leisure.
Security and law enforcemcnt personnel could main- tain an image database of faces along with personnel records. Signatures could be added to the File and coin- pareil using software. Ifs hard cnough to forge a signature. Ici alone a face.
Médical records could include X-rays, sonigrams, cell slidcs or other visual information. In the long run, it might be possible to create a standard for the storing and rctrieving of médical data. 'Fins would allovv for a universal médical F.proin card containing ail of an indi- vidual’s lifetime médical records.
Thcrc are other médical applications. Using a varicty uf image-manipulation functions known as radiometric opérations, il is possible to enhance the usefulness of an image. Gontrast strctching is used when ail of the pixel biiglitness values in an image fall into a small range. By taking the lightest values and redefîning them as vvhite and the darkest values as hlack, and linearly varying the midvalues, it is possible to increase the uscable information in an image,
Another funciion is density sltcing. By selecting pixel values that fall within a spécifie range, it is possible to select certain détails within an image and highlight them. I liis procès*» is ofien aided bv the use of pseudo- color processing, whic h involves assigning colors to ranges of pixel values. You've seen this in pictures iaken from the LANDSAT satellites.
Some additional techniques include spatial opérations. Spatial texture, registration procédures, llltering and feaüirc extraction are some of the opérations that are used în image processing of CAT scan results, structural X rays, thermal analysis, nonclcstructive lesting, astron- omv and geophysics.
Fbere are a tremendous number of other applications: interior design, computer-aided design and manufacture, robot vision, video post production, sports training, graphie arts, computer simulation, motion study, electronic art. Animation and hundreds of educa- tional possibilities.
Home uses also corne to minci. More and more faini- lies are using video caméras instead of Super «S. A digitizer would allow for the création of either a disk-based picture album or hardcopy still images. With the Corning of CD-ROM-basée! Encyclopedias, a digitizer could be used to include diagrams and pictures in school reports and homework assignments. C’hildrcn could color in digitized images of'their favorite Saturday morning cartoon ciiaracters. MTV fans could croate their own posters of rock stars.
I lie future of digital image processing is bright. Improvements in image résolution will continue ai an accelerated pace as the cost of memory falls, Sophisti- cated daia-compression software may decrease the neecled RAM to store an image and allow digilally stored images to approach the resolution of taped images at a cost that businesses can afford.
Linked to a laser printer, image processors will combine many of the functions of the office photocopier, fax machine and graphies workstation. Connected to a video projector, ihev will replace the 35mm slide pro- jector in business présentations. The addition of optical character récognition capability will croate a system that can interactively learn new fonts, read a printed page and couvert it to an ASC11 file.
As more people purchase digitizers, more software applications will be crcated by third-party developcrs. Education, graphie arts, manufacturing and business will ail benefit from the use of digital image technology.
As a graphies workstation, the Amiga should be at the forefront of low-cost commercial and consumer applications of image processing, The potential of the Amiga with A-Squared's digitizer in the graphics video markets should givc the Amiga a tremendous boost.
Adciress ail author correspondente to Mattheiv L'eds, PO Box 210627, San Francisco, CA 91121.
THANKS COMMODORE-AMIGA™ !!
Circle 30 on Reader Service card.
SOUNDS GOOD TO US. . .
EVTRYWARF-T producers of MUS1CRAFT-, the quality music program for the new Amiga™ Computer, would like to take this opportunity to congratulate Commodore and the team at Amiga for a job well donc.
To finit oui more about our products for the Amiga. Tilt oui the form btlow For a charter sultMripiinn t«» «tir newsletter, enclose S I > on I .S S|H no forcign). You will team ahout sound and graphies lips and trick* plus att the late breaking news ahout the Amiga. HCRRY and iakc advantage of rhis introductory offer.
C Musierafi T7 MIDI Ct>ntrot 1er Software [7! Newsletter
? Musierafi Albums ? 640 x 2(M» Graphie System C other ____
EVERYWARE, INC. • Sound & Graphie Software • P.O. Box 3418 • Northridge, CA. • 91323
Inilui l Muiknlt irr irj.Jcmjik. of i innm.ni.-ri AnnjtJ lu. ¦ tn.riwjfr ii j tiJiUnuiL of Ivtnuifr l u j l jIUiioiq i oipoijinm • hit'ujn' k ihh ilirv,iK jlJiluU'tl ui|h ( i>iiiiniHii>rr Aitugj ¦ imhs tURVttAHt, INC
Earth will be destroyed in 12 minutes to make way for a hyperspace bypass.
Should you hitchhike into the next galaxy?
Or stay and drink beer?
EXIT THE VILLAGE PUB THEN GO NORTH In that case you’ll be off 011 the most mind- bogglingly hilaiious adventure any earthling everhad. Rw
YOU GET DRUNK AND HAVE A TERRIFIE. TIME F DR TWELVE MINUTES* ARE THE LIFE AND SOUL ÜF THE PUB, TELL SÜME REALLY TERRIFIC STORIEB, MAKE EVERYONE LAUGH A LDT,
AND THEY ALL CLAP YOU ON THE BACK AND TELL YOU WHAT A GREAT CHAR YOU ARE AND THEN THE EARTH GETS UNEXPECT- EDLY DEMOLISHED, YOU WhKE UP WITH A HANGOVER THAT LASTS FOR ALL ETERNITY. YOU HAVE DIED.
The HitchhikersGuide tothe Galaxy cornes complété with Péril Sensitive Sunglasses, a iMicroseopic Space Fleet, a DONTPANIC Iîutton, a package of Multipurpose Fluff and orders for the destruction ofvour »
home and planet.
Circle 50 on Reader Service card.
Responds-in full sentences. Which means that at every tum, you have Jiterally thousands of alter- natives. So if you décidé it might be vise, for instance, to wrap a towel ai’ound your head, you justsayso:
You communicate-and the storj àB
WRAP THE TÜWEL ARÜUND MY HEAD
And the story responds:
THE RAUENOUS BUGBLATTER 6EAST OF TRAAL IS COMPLETEL Y BEWILDERED* IT IS SO DIM IT THINKS IF YOU CAN 'T SEE IT IT CAN 'T SEE YOU.
But be careful about what you say. Or one moment you might be strapped down, forced to endure a readingof the third worst poetry in the galaxy; the nextyou could be hurtling through space with Marvin the Paranoid Android aboard a stolen spaceship.
And simply staying tilive from one zany situation to the next will requii’e every proton of puzzle solving prowess your mere mortal mind can muster. Even simple tasks can put you at wit’s end:
OPEN THE DOOR And the story responds:
THE DOOR EXPLAINS» IN A HAUGHTY TÜNE THAT THE RDCM IS OCCUPIED BY A SUPER-INTELLIGENT ROBOT AND THAT LESSER BEINGS (BY WHICH IT MEANS YOU)
ARE NOT TO BE ADMITTED. "SHOW ME SOME TINY EXAMPLE OF YOUR INTELLIGENCE "
IT SAYSt "AND MAYBE JUST MAYBE I MIGHT RECONSIDER. "
W But don’t panic. You’ll be accompanied
even’ light-year of the way by youi* trusty Hitchfukeis Guide, which you can always j dépend on for up-to-the-nanosecond f information. Well, almost always:
r>CONSULT THE HITCHHIKER 'S GUIDE ABOUT THE MOLECULAR HYPERWAUE PINCER
And the story responds:
SORRY THAT PORTION OF OUR SUB-ETHA DATABASE WAS ACCIDENTALLY DELETED LAST NIGHT DURING A WILD OFFICE PARTY.
So put down that beer, take that towel off your head, open the door, hitchhike down to your local software store today and pick up THE HITCH- HIKER’S GUIDE TO THE GALAXY. Before they put that bypass in.
Still not convinced? Try oui-Sampler Disk which includes portions of foui’ différent types of stories for a paltry $ 7.95. If it doesn’t get you hooked on the addictive pleasures of Infocom, retimi it for a M refund. Il' it does, you can apply the piice toward any Infocom story. You can’t lose!
1 i> u
Other interactive science fiction stories from Infocom inclurie PLANETFALL," in which you’re stranded on a mysterious deserted world. STÀRCROSS," a puzzling challenge issued eons agoand light- vears awav. SUSPENDE Dt™ the race to stabilise an entire planet's life support Systems. And A MINI) FOREVEK YOYAGING a radicallv new work of se no us science fiction in which you explore the future ofmankind.
For more information call l-800-2(>2- i868.
Or write to us at 125 Cambridge Par k Dr., Cambridge, MA 02140.
11985 Infocom, Inc. TH E HITCH HIKE RS G t IDE TO TH E GALAXY is a trademark of Douglas Adams. PLANETFALL. STAP.CROSS. SU5PENDED and A MIND FORE VER YOYAGING are trademarksof INFOCOM. Inc.
Music by MIDI: The Marnage of Talent and Technology
MIDI is nozv the standard of co m m u n ica t ion hetween computers, musicians and their instruments. For a euphonious price, your MIDI-equipped Amiga can place you in the avant-garde of the révolution in music. By Peggy Herrington
nicncc with as much répétition as you (or your kids) find necessarv. MIDI-equipped music laboralories in schools and collèges may revoluiionizc the way music has been taught since Mozart was a kid.
Prédit lions about the dramatic changes technology is hringing to oui lives have mat le us expert a great deal Iront personal computers. But unless you like programniing or w rite lots of letters. You may be languishing for lack ot stimulating, yei practical, applications for your computer. |ust recently, .t splendid irony has been emerging througb the infusion of high tech’s austère logic into one ol the oldest and most subjective, emolional and créative disciplines known to mankind music. This was évident at the Amiga’s launch in New York, whereTom Scott, Michael Bodickcr and Roger Powell, using the MIDI interface, drew great applause in a live performance.
I he t rend now is to put together a professional home music studio, which iunctions due to an idea callcd MIDI (Musical Instrument Digital Interface). The basis of this studio is a personal computer with a disk drive and vour home stereo svstem. If you already have these, the addition of a music synthesizer or two with a MIDI interface and sonie software will cost much less than a new piano or organ. The potential uses ot the two music systems differ so enormously as to render them incomparable.
A simili MIDI studio can provide hours and bonis of enjovmeni for vou and vour fainilv and work to great aclvantage in many hobby and semi prolessional situations: providing accompaniment for choirs and bands, for instance, or producing music and sound effects tracks svnchronized with the actions oi home video re* cordings or local thealrical productions. Specialized MIDI software for music éducation is in its infancy, but it already offers lessons without scornful glances or rappetl knuckles. Schcduled entirelv at your couve-
Leader of the Band
MllM is simple a set of standards or i ules governing and actuallv making possible communications belween différent brands oi electronic musical instruments through the management and memory of a personal computer. T he Amiga, with its 256K of memorv. Multilayerecl operating svstem. Sophisticated graphies and digital sampling capabilities, is extrcmely well-suited for MIDI applications. (In order to grasp the far reaching effects MIDI has had on the music industrv as a whole and get sonie ideas on what you could do with a home music studio, see How the Pros Use MIDI, p. 36.)
The music synthesizer is widely acclaimed as the 20th century’s prinvary contribution to tnusic, and it is the standard tare of many instrument manufacturers these davs. Although they vary widely in features and price, svnthesizers are virtually ail MIDI-equipped. Developed in the 1920s, svnthesizers usually house one Voltage ( .ontrolled Oscillator (VCO) per voice, and, just like ira* ditional instruments, produce sound by vibration. Pitch is controlled by the atnount of voltage applied, usually one volt per octave. Through selectablc wavefovms, muhipart sound envelopes, filtevs and other sophisticated innards, each brand has its own distinctive sound, along with the ahility to itnilaie traditional instruments.
Sounds Like Numbers
Another electronic instrument that looks and plavs much like a kevhoard synthesizer is a digital sampling kevboard but the similaritv is only skin deep. A digital sam|iler is more versatile and poweviul than a synthesizer because it isn't limited to producing sound with
How MIDI Works
I he Musical Instrument Digital Interface “standard" was developed by a group of music indusu y savants about four vears ago. Il was the first concerted effort to establish a much nceded industrywide protocol foi communications between electronic musical iiisiru- ments. Recording and effects devices and computers; it providcd the first direct link betueen these two industries. The fact that virtually ail electronic music equip- ment is now MIDI-cquipped is indicative of its resounding success.
Along with its individual components and circuitrv, each MIDI-equipped instrument bouses a receiver for réception and exécution of instructions through use of an optoisolator and a L niversal Asvnchronous Receiver- I tansmiuer (l'ART), plus a transrniiter that can originale MIDI messages, sencling them bv wav of the UART and a line driver. Connections are made to 3-pin fcmalc DIX réceptacles, usually located on the back panel of the instrument (onlv pins 2, 3 and î of which are used and labelled MIDI In and .MIDI Ont).
I hese are ofien acconipanicd bv an nplional MIDI Thru. Which forwards incotning MIDI data to the next instrument wiihin a "daisv-chained" MIDI system.
Shielded cables of twisted pair wiring with 5 pin maie DIX connectors at each end are used to conneci svnthe- si ers to each other, to other electronic devices and to an optional personal computer with a hardware interlace.
In its most elementary formation, two brands of svn- thesîzers can be connected so that tliev hotli sound when the lirst is played. Eitlier in miisnn oral predeter- mined intervals, bv installing a cable from tlu* first svh- thesizer’s MIDI Ont to tlte second svnthesizer’s MIDI In.
With anoiher cable runnine from the second svnthesiz-
ers MIDI Ont to the firsfs MTDI In. Bnth synthesizers sound when played from cithcr keyboard.
Cable arrangements between three svnihesizcrs détermine il ail three will sound when played from one kev- board (doue by using MIDI I bru from the middle one) or if onlv two will be activated. Which two depending on the arrangement of the cables and which kcvboard is being plavcd.
A Song to Remember
Music parameters from MIDI instruments, sut h as pitch, note dotation, settings for instrument sotmds (called “prograins" in the music biz) and channet spécifications can be saved in computer inemorv, altered (with appropriate software) and transferred n> disk. If a ihuin machine is in use. It arts as the tnaster time keeper, just like the druinmer in a real band. 11 not, the computer synchronizcs ail timing svstcms.
MIDI software instructions are wrilten in low-lcvel assemhly language and consist of spécifie scquences of cliaractcrs that make up tlu* MIDI instruction set. Word lengih is cight bits, with one start and one stop bit (for a total of ten); transmission is doue seriallv at a rate of
31. 230 hits per second, which is ccrtainlv fast enough when you consider that music is a "real-tirne” proccss with no need to ever re-send a note, for example. Data can be transmitted over 16 channels simultaneously, and each instrument (sometimes even each voice) can be assigned ils own channel. But the manner in which an instrument will respond to incotning channel information is detennined by selccting (on that instrument's control panel. If not available through software control) one of four MIDI modes of opération. These modes are the resuli of combinations of three MIDI messages: Omni (On mcans to accept instructions from ail channels, Off from onlv one) and Poly and Mono (which, depending on the Omni setting, détermine how many notes are assigned to each channel).
Mode 1. Omni Ou, Poly (also called Omni mode): When set in this mode, an instrument will respond to instructions sent over ail 16 channels, regardless of the channel to which it is set. This is the usuat setting on powerup.
Mode 2. Omni On. Mono: fins mode assigns ail incotning information from ail channels to one voice and will play monophonically (one note at a time), even if MIDI instructions are to play a chorcl.
? Mode 3. Omni Off. Poly (also called the Poly mode): Sel in this mode, an instrument will respond onlv to information from ils assigned channel: it is useful for playing spécifie parts on différent instruments.
? 3 rWc • . Omni Off, Mono (also known as Mono mode): In this setting. Each voice on a multitimbral instrument can be set to ils own channel. It is used for gelting one synthesi .er to play différent instrument parts multilimbrallv.
MIDI suj)ports many more subde functions required for successful control of synthesizers and ihe like, but it's important to reali e that it is not a cure-ail: It won’t make an instant musician oui ol just anvone. Neither will it transler liai dware-based leatlires from one instrument to anoiher. If a svnthesizer isn't multitimbral in the first place. "MIDI-ing" it to one that is won’t make any différence.
For more information, a booklet called Korg Guide to Vnderstanding MIDI is available from l’nicord Korg. And the MIDI 1.0 Spécification itsell can he oblained from the International MIDI Association, a non-profit users* group, located at I 1837 Hartsook St., North Hollywood. CA 91607, 818-303-8964, (lie hack-and-forth vibrations of V(X)s. You tan ihink of it as a deluxe recording device thaï translates soumis into numbers which can then bc manipulated in ways other than those of VCOs.
Until rccentlv, a digital sam pl ing keyhoard was mut h more expensive than a synthesizer. Now, however, the MIDl-equipped F.nsoniq Mirage (SIcleveloped h sonie of the engineers responsible for the video and rnusic chips in the Commodore fi l) ofïers eighl voices with a five-octave ((il kev) velocity-scnsitive kevhoard and built-in 3J(" disk drive. It is capable of cligitizing sound front just about any source, including venir voice and those sounds distinctive to pnpular tnodels of sviv thesizers, In short, the Mirage can not only imitate ira* ditional instruments in a far supet ior mariner, it can less, because this is a new industry. Finding a particular MIDI software application for your brand of computer can be exasperating. MIDI software déterminés what you can do with your system. And it fails generally into four catégories: music performance, score printing, music éducation and home entertainment or récréation.
l'he Music Shop (S49.95) from Passport Designs is the first software on the market designed speciftcally for MIDI recreationaî music composition. A modification of a program designed originallv for the Commodore 64 s SID chip, it features irons with pull-down menus, dialog boxes and screen displays of pages of standard music notation, which can be printed with a dot-matrix
Sophisticated MIDI software is needed to foster the growth of electronic music in collèges and high schools. When it is available, it will revolutionize the teaching of music.
Also mimic svmhesizers. It must be heard to lie apprêt i* ated. Because of these qualiiies and ils price. The Mitage is one of the most prominent bridges yet to he consiructed between professinnal and home MIDI applications.
Several other pièces of MIDI hardware herald ils homecoming and are disiinguishable front professinnal equipment by ease of use and lower prices. Max. a six- voice MIDI-equipped svntliesizer, cornes with 80 built-in instrument sounds. Casio’s C. . lOl synthesizer (S499) has four MIDl-programmable voices (plus four more that are not MIDI) and a four-octave kevhoard (however. Ils keys are roughly hall the standard si e). The C .-10I stores 32 différent instrument sounds. Both of these svnthesizers are nuilti-timbral, which means that thev are capable of sounding différent instruments and musical hues simuhaneouslv ihrough MIDI uj) to the limit of their voices: Max with six, and C .-101 with four. Vvhat’s spécial about these svnthesizers is that thev are designed with the MIDI home music studio in mind, although thev are finding homes with the profes* sional crowd, toc».
A MIDI hardware interface, which attaches to a per- sonal computer, is connectée! Bv standard cables (MIDI In, Oui and Thru) to a synthesizer. Which in turn can he chained n» another synthesizer, and another, etc. Interfaces for the Amiga are available from Cherry Lane Technologies ($ 39 to .$ 79). Interfaces are prettv well slandardized now, with the exception of a line of Intelligent Interfaces from Roland, which take over some of the processing front the computer. Ncverthe- printer. With this. Vou can record multipart music with svnthesizers like Max, the CZ-IOI and or the Mirage dig- ital sampler, store your compositions in computer memorv (and later on disk), edit. Manipulate and rearrange vour music, and finallv, listeti to it or play along using it as prerecorded aecompanimeut.
(lomputer Shert Music from Passport Designs Mal Léonard Publishing can be used with any MIDI keyhoard. It is a software sériés featuring music front popular record- ing anists (Michael Jackson, for one). Keyhoard technique is taugltt with songs displaved on the screen in standard notation with chords; notes change color as thev are plaved correctlv on the keyboard.
A more extensive line of interactive music éducation software, front Electronic Courseware Svstems. Is being distrihuted by Passport: Keyhoard Blues teachcs blues chords, 12-hai blues and the composition of original blues solos, without making judgement on quality. Key* board Chords envers qualities of simple major, rninor and augmented cltords in both treble and bass clef and inc Indes spelling drills and tests. Keyhoard Intervais teachcs the student to play and recognize major, minor, augmented and diniinislied intervais. Keyhoard Jazz Harmonies includes tutorials and quizzes on chord symbols, chorcl récognition and chord spelling, Keyhoard Kapers has three timed piano keyboard gantes for developing hasic sight-reacling skills. Keyhoard Note Drill is a more advaneed sight-reading program covering treble and bass clefs, and Super Challenger is a keyboard-oriented ear-tiaining tutorial covering major and minor intervais on the 12-note chromatic scale,
Leaming the Tune
More sophisticated cducational MIDI software will be needcd to foster the growth of electronic music labora* tories in collèges and high schools. When it is available, it will revolutioni .e the leaching of music in the class- room. Silice most MIDI keyboards accommodate car phones, centralized music Systems with peripheral computers and keyboards could allow an insiructor to monitor the progress of a group of students as each works at liis or herown pace on music theory, car training, composition, orchestration, scoringand, of course, performance. Software could make leaming notation much easier bv auto- matically translating keypresses into standard music symbols, or displaying what the studeni played as opposed to what should have been played. It could help develop tim- ing skills or play a counterpoint mclody or harmonie accoinpaniment along with the student. But wait thai’s
How the Pros Use MIDI
The very nature of musical performance has been improved bv the implémentation of MIDI. Not onlv can a musician sound more notes on stage than he or she bas fingers (tbrougb use of pre-recorded accompani- ments loaded from disk), but anv MIDI-equipped synthesizer can be set up as a “master" unit, with key presses on it travelitig as signais through MIDI cables to be played on "slave” synthesizers capable of making sounds not available on the master. That means a per- former can play more than one synthesizer from a particular kevboarcl no small accomplishment, because différent brands of synthesizers (like computers) do things differently. For example, one brand mav produce a type of sound another doesn’t, or mav produce a particular sound better than another (woodwind, for instance), which is why performers commonly use several synthesizers on stage.
Polvphonic synthesizers can sinuillaneously sound différent timbres, or instrument sounds (also called programs, presets or patelles), but in live play, most make onlv one type of sound at a time. In other words, while a synthesizer may have six voices, be programmable and thereforc capable of producing a nearly unlim* itecl varietv of sounds. Ail of iis voices make the sanie type of instrument sound when played live from the keybeard. (An exception to this is the synthesizer that allows vou to split its keyboard, declaring part of it as one instrument, part as another.)
Without MIDI, on-board sequencers are used to record separate instrument lines from a single synthesizer (one at a lime), which, when played back together. Resuit in the multitimbral sound of a group of instruments. How much multitimbral music can be recorded this way is déterminée! By the amount of information that the synthesizers internai sequencer can hold, and sometimes that’s not much. While it's tough for one person to play more than two synthesizers live (one for each liand), with MIDI many différent electronic instruments (synthesizers, guitars, drum machines, spécial elfects devices, etc.) can operate in concert, each mnlti- titnbrally (provided it has that capabiiity in the first place), ail mider the control of a single musician.
Play ing the Circuit
Todav's professionals who use synthesizers concern themselves less than they used to with technique or the phvsical sivlistic management of an instrument (called "chops” hy popular music pros). Indeed, sotne woncler il the tenu “virtuoso" has much meaning in this field. MIDI-equipped synthesizers have given these new performers great freedom to establish rapport with an audience and accotnplish what thev're up there to do: entenain. Talent, skill and study are, of course, still requireinenis, but thev're often applied in différent areas; although synthesizers are associaled with the familiar piano keyboard, playing one is worlds away from playing a piano.
Of course, synthesizer rnusicians need not learn acoustic instruments inlimately, but a différent touch is required to mimic them successfully on a keyboard: Moins, stringecl and percussion instruments sound very différent from each other, and cach needs to play in its native range. Arrangement and instrumentation become highlv valued sk i lis. As are a knowledge of computers and electronics, Programming a drum machine (a specialized music synthesizer) isn't as easy as whis- tling Dixie,
The MIDI Edge
MIDI, however. Offers manv advantages not enjoved hy traditional rnusicians. With a component MIDI System (which means equipinent can be upgraded or new pièces added), instrument parts can be played individually, either with a métronome keeping time or with previously recorded parts, and stored automatically in computer memorv and later saved to disk. This record- ing of parts can be donc at a comfortable pace and the entire pièce boosted to tempo with no cffcct on pitch. Instrumentation the sélection of instruments for var* ious parts can he repeatedlv adjusted between svnthe- sizers. Ihrough MIDI software control. Music can be clisplayed on the screen or on paper with a primer and edited, manipulated and réarrangée! As exiensivclv as the program allows.
Playing live (with or without a prerecorded accom- paniment) is enhancctl hy a synthesizer. Because it can produce many "fat," interesting sounds. A performer can create tu 11, aurally rewardiug music using onlv a
actly what our next program tlocs.
S croît Oi>er Beethoven
A line of MIDI software for the Amiga from Cherry ne Technologies (some of which have educational 1 recreational features) promises to establisli this mputer at the forefront of MIDI applications, both ofcssionally and in the home. Hannotty, relcased con rrently with the Amiga, is an accompanirnent pro- am developcd jointly by Cherry Lane and Carnegie-
:vv notes. Blocked chords, one-handed mélodies or ven one Fingcr are sometimes ail thafs neecled.
The equipment that's availablc for professional per- irniance is a musician’s delight. If vou've alreadv eveloped your chops 011 a guitar, as opposed to a key- oard, the Roland GR-700 Guitar will sound not onlv :s own internai circuitry, but also that of MIDI kev- toard synthesizers, sequenccrs, drmn machines and so
• n. Or maybe you want to get an acoustic, electric or lectronic piano into the act; MIDI Retrofit Kits from orte Mu sic will send notes, vclocity or pitch from a electable area of the piano kevhoard (it reads the s usait) pedal, too) through MIDI to a symhesi .er, leaving he rest of the piano kevhoard playable as usual. If you ion’t want to haul a piano around, mavbe Cherry Lane nakes what you’re after: Pitch Writer ex tracts the pitch rom a monophonie source (which can be a voice) and .ends it via MIDI to a synthesizer to play. Want to syn- hronize stage lights with music? With J. !.. Coopçr's vlIDI Lighting Controller 1, vou can prerecord lighting md spécial effects in synchrony with the music.
MIDI Systems are employed widelv in professional ecording studios. Because MIDI synchronizes internai iming différences hetween synthesizers and ancillary equipment, thereby providing compatibiliiy, only MIDI mils with inhérent spécial quai nies (e.g.. a synthesizer vhich produces a unique sound) neecl be carted to and rom the studio by a performer cutting a record. In act, sometimes a good deal of the performance can be ecorded by the artisl at home and delivercd to the stu- iio 011 disk or niultitrack tape. Progressive radio and clevision stations and production companies have a narketing advantage, because in-house MIDI music stu- lios are affordable and very well-suilcd for making ound tracks for commercials, The versatilitv of synthe- izers under MIDI contre! Is so great that a single vtiowledgeable composer can record complété motion }icture sound tracks, which used to require an entire nchestra.
Lu the music industry, and ail other industries in vhich sound production and recording plav a part, dIDI is changing what we hcar and the rôle of those vho create it.
Mellon L'niversity, incorporât ing artif icial intelligence and speech-recognition concepts. As you play on a MIDI kevhoard, it supplies the accompanirnent and fol- lows your lead. Texture features an extensive rnusic sequencer; it is graphics-oriented, but it does not fea* ture standard notation. It utilizes the Amiga's ability to overprint graphies on videotape. PitchWriter works with Marmony and digitizes pitch from monophonie sources, sending them through MIDI to be played by a synthe- sizer; this might be a good way to practice playing your horn, for instance.
Cherry Lane is also developing an Amiga music notation package and a synthesizer package, the lalter using digital -sampling techniques to create sounds for MÏDI- based synthesizers. With the exception of Texture S 199), these programs will rctail from S99 to S149 each and are planned for release in approximately two- montli intervais after the introduction of the Amiga.
(For more détails, see our article on Cherry Lane Technologies,
p. 58. Eds.)
Watching the home entertainment industry emerge is ail experience that might move you to visit a music retailer for a démonstration of a kevhoard or two. And after that, who knows? With a small MIDI music studio, you and your Amiga can start making some incredible music.
Address ail author correspondence to Peggy Herrington, 1032 Forrester St. .VIL, Albuquerque, NM S'7102.
List of Companies
625 Miramontes St. Suite 103
Half Moon Bay, CA 94019
Roland DG Corp.
Los Angeles, CA 90040
Sequential Circuits Inc.
3051 North First St. San José, CA 95134
89 Frost Street Westbury, NY 11590
15 Gardner Road Fairfield, J 07006
Cherry Lane Technologies
1 10 Midland Avenue Port Chesier, NY 10573
(212) 824-7711 Ensoniq
263 Great Valley Parkwav
Mal ver 11, PA 19355
San José, CA 95150
J. L. Cooper Electronics
2800 South Washing ton Blvd.
Marina Del Rev, CA 90291
Musicians and computers hâve traditionally inhabited différent worlds. Artists need freedom and flexibility; computers, by contrast, need rules: nuance is not some- thing they understand. In général, musicians bave shown even more résistance to difficult-to-learn-and-use software than either graphie artists or writers. Further- more, enabling a computer to make music has been an expensive endeavor something many musicians can’t afford what with the price of a computer, an interface so it can understand instruments or voices and the nec- essary software (ali this on top of the price of the musi- cian's own instrument).
Cherry Lane Technologies: i Maestros of Innovative Music Software
By Abigail Reifsnyder Cherry Lane’s inexpensive, easy-to-use music software for the A miga places the most advanced sound technology literally at your fingertips.
The Amiga is changing ail that, and Cherry Lane Technologies, the one*year*old computer hardware and software division of music pithlisher Cherry Lane, is plaving a key rôle in this change. What word processors have doue for writers and spreadsheets have done for husinesses. Cherrv Lane believes it can do for mnsi- cians with a sériés of integrated music software for the Amiga.
“The Amiga is the machine that answers ail of our questions,” explains Cherry Lane Technologies Président David Archambault. "It has superbly désignée! Internai sound capahilities, the machine is relatively inexpensive, it has unbelievahle speed and color graphies. . ,. We see it as a real opportunity for us to develop a fully integrated, sophisticated package of music prod- ucts right up front rather than a whole bunch of little pièces here, there and everywhere.”
The company's flrst relcasc for the Amiga, Harmony ($ 79). Appears on the surface to be a relatively simple accompaniment program. In fact, it is only simple in its
use; what's going on in the machine is some very sophis- ticated sound production (courtesy of Amiga's sound chip) combined with arttficial intelligence capahilities courtesy of Roger Dannenberg, Research Computer Scientisi at Carncgie-Mellon University) that allow the machine to actually listen to the performer and adjust its accompanimeni accordingly.
The program offers a choice of songs (from the Beatles and Lionel Richie initially); the performer then selects one of the five parts to play or sing. As the music is displayed on the screen, the musician per- forms the part while the Amiga or a synthesizer attached to the Amiga generates the four-part accom- paniment. If the musician slows down, the accompani* ment slows down; if the musician plays softly, the accompaniment plays softly; and if the musician jumps ahead in the score, the computer recognizes this and jumps ahead too.
Dannenberg explains what's going on: "It uses some pattern-matching techniques to compare what you play against the score that's stored in the computer. Thaï means you only have to get close to what’s stored in the computer, so you’re allowed to make mistakes and it will recognize them as mistakes and not be fooled.
Then ihe ou t put of this pattern-matching process tells the Amiga where you are in the pièce so that the computer can tell if you’re speeding up or slowing down and then do the appropriate things with the accompaniment. In a vvay, you can think of it as a computer model of an actual human accompanist. .
Another important différence between this and other accompaniment programs is that the music was re- corded into the computer by live musicians. "We are ail very conscious of the musical needs of these programs as well as the technical needs," says Dannenberg. "If you’ve ever heard a computer performance of a piece
of music donc mechanically, it sounds really lifeless because every single quarter note is exacily the saine and ail the notes are subdivided very precisely.”
Having the music performed by real people gives it more life, making it more like a human accompanist. It aiso created one of the hardest problems for the Cherry Lane programmers to ovcrcotnc, because the music dis- played on the screen is not actually the music being performed. Each score is entered into the computer twice, once for the visual display and once for the performance. Thîs is where the Amiga Interface technol- ogy becomes so important since the program must compare what you play to what il is playing to the graphies display of the score.
According to Bill Buxten, Research Scientist at the University of Toronto’s Computer Systems Research Institute and consultant to Cherry Lane. “in many ways, [f farmwiy] appears to he a very simple program, but tliafs the point. The opération is almost trivial; il s haut you use il. The assuinption is that the benefïts accrue in the process of using h and not in the fascination of fïguring out how the damn tliing works.”
Archambauli stresses the reasonable cost and accessi- bility of the program. MIDI interfaces and snphisticated synthesizers are not necessary. You can play a part using the Cherry Lane-developed and manufacturée!
(and Commodore-marketed) keyboard, or von can use Cherry Lane’s Amiga PitchWriter with a microphone to sing into the computer.
Cherry Lane is also dcveloping a PitchWriter for gui- tars. Of course, an Amiga MIDI interface is also avail- able ($ 41)). “We decided a long time ago that we wantecl to keep the pricing relatively low," expiains Archam- bault. “The machines that people buy are expensive enough. We’re selling to a market where, to a large extern, the musicians can harelv afford their instruments. If, once they buy their instruments, we expert them to go and spend another couple thousand dollars on a computer, then another $ 500 to S1000 to get something to do with it. Then we’re just going to continue to limit the market. We decided this was just baloney.”
This saine philosophy of musical integrily coupled with case of use and reasonable cost bas characterized ail of Chcrrv Lane's efforts for the Amiga. Lis next product, to he released in the fall, will be an enhanced version of its texture program ($ 109), previously released for the IBM PC and Apple IL.
'texture was designed and prograiiuned by Roger Pow-
cll. Cherry Lane's Direcior of Product Development and keyboardist for Todd Rundgren and Utopia. A sophisticatcd composition program. Texture grew oui of Powell s own needs to be able to control synthesizers while reiaining Ilie spontaneity important to music composition. With a keyboard connected to the computer. The composer can play pièces of music which are then assigned to up to eight différent cracks in the computer. F.ach track, as well as each individual note and event within the track, can he manipulaled separalely. Ail eight tracks taken together for a certain lengih of
lime form a “pattern," which can also he manipulaled through varions commands and evenlually strung together to form a complété score.
‘It s basically a toolbox,” Powell says, “of a lot of différent manipulations you can perforai al ter you’vc record ed the material. For instance, you can rotate mélodies within their boundaries so that the notes at the begin- ning appear at the end. You can scale the time of events so that one track will play everything with slightlv longer times than the one underneath it. You can fil ter out ranges of pitch data you don’t want, or perforai transpositions so that what you record can înstantly be played back in another key that may be difficult for you to play. You can alter the speed and tempo al any point. It also lias a built-in éditer that allows you to zéro in on every single event on the track."
In its current IBM and Apple versions, the program is without a doubt sophisticatcd, but, like the carly word processors, is also difficult for the computer néophyte to operate. “Obviously, the advantages of a more capable computer like the Amiga offer the real future of a program like this,” Powell says. “What I have right now is this toolbox of ail these commands and rn lations and spécial capabilities, and what xvç s Æalïy looking for is a more sophisticatcd user interface.”
For example, in the curren version, il you want to erase a section of a track, yfting the boundaries and exccuting the deletion involves a wholc sériés of prompts in which the composer must enter spécifie numbers to indicate positions on the track. Because the Amiga is more powerful, especially in its graphies capabilities, such tasks will he Arried out by simply point- ing with the mouse to a giaphics représentation of that track on the screen. This kind of change lias the added advantage of clearing the Krecn fllled, in the current
ity, ease of use and reasonable cost characterize ail of Cherry Lane’s efforts for the Amiga.
Versions, by comrnand and menu boxes so that more of the musical score can be displayed. The Amiga's color capabilities will allovv further enhancements such as color coding of certain opérations or tracks so the composer will have to remember fewer commands.
Powell also plans to use “piano-roll" notation in the program instead of traditional music notation. A more intuitive form of notation, piano-roll notation is a grid
where the horizontal axis re présents time and the vertical axis represents pitch. Notes are horizontal lines positioned according to their pitch and running along for a specîfied amount of time. Thus, if one .voice plays middle C for four beats, it would appear towarcLtKe middle of the screen and be four units oftime LtongBtf a second voice were to corne in halfway through at high C, its line would be at the top of t lie screen (to indicate the higher pitch), but beginning aftei' two time units of the First note.
One advantage of this form of notation is that it makes it casier to see at a glance events that are occur- ring simultaneously. Sincc it is more intuitive. ît also means that musicians who cairt read music will still hc able to compose. (Powell is considering programming an add-on module that will translate scores composed using piano roll notation into traditional notation.)
Powell hopes to add a numbcr of other features to the Amiga version. ‘T‘ve got a list of about 16 other manipulations that I‘d like to be able to perforrn on the note stream,” he explains, “including a fair amount of automatic note génération. For example, if you have the grid on the screen and you draw a line across there with squiggles in it, it would generate a melody that would follow that basic trajectory. You could specify that the melody should happen not just as random notes picked off the keyboard, but that the notes would be coerced into fitting into a certain cohérent scale.. .1 can sce a whole sel of things like this where you wouldn’t need keyboard input. And it opens up possi- billties for musicians who play spécifie instruments
* ause you’re not locked into your own technique or r own blases that you’ve developed over the years. It gets more directly at the composition process, instead of having to filter ail your ideas through a niechanical device like a keyboard. Basically, it's ‘gesture-oriented’ création of music.”
“Gesture” is a popular word aroutid Cherry Lane.
Bill Buxton, the designer of a soon-to-be-released traditional music notation program from Cherry Lane, developed h is program (as of vet unnamed, unpriced) to be "gesture-oriented” from a desire to make computers casier to use. He explains: “One of the things that always struck me is that things like pop-up and pull-down menus often mean that it takes two or three steps to do what you should be able to do with one gesture, I wanted to develop software where you show the computer what you want in a tnanner that is really analogous to what I call “chalk talk" what the coach does at half-time in a football game where vou circle the things you want and just drag them to where they go, much like the way you would lay out plays.”
The implémentation of the gesture concept in a music-writing program is amazingly simple: a music staff appears on screen with the insertion point indi- cated by a ladder going vertically through and extern!- ing above and below it. To place a quarter note, you simply move the mouse pointer to that spot, click down and drag u p. Similarly. If you want to place an eighth note;'-! N s te ad of just dragging up, you drag up then down as if drawing the flag on an eighth note. A six- teenth note is creaied by going up. Down, then up again. In oihcr words, voit go up and down for as nianv tlags as ai?* on the note.
The other basic commands are equally straightfor- ward. For çjjample, inoving, inserting or erasing single notes or blocks of notes is easily accomplished through simple opérations with the mouse.
Next to snftplicity, Buxtcn’s objective was to show as much o£ the actual music on screen as possible. “Screen real estate is still at qui te a premium.” he explains, "so you doiFt want to have a lot of it taken ujj by ail these commands and so on; vou want to use it for useful
information. By having this chalk-talk type approach, you get it right. You don’t need to cover up inaterial with command information because it's right there immediately at your Fingertips,”
Scheduled to he releascd around the saine time as Texture is a sound xampling package whercby the coin- pilier digili es a "sample” ol anv sound noise, voice, instrument and extrapolâtes il over the full range of the keyboard. This gives the keyboard player the abilits to générale completelv unique sounds, as well as real piano or trumpet sounds, etc., from the keyboard.
The company also has a line of éducation»! Music software, including an ear-training program, that it plans to port to the Amiga from the IBM PC and Apple
II. Translations of exîsting software will not he their main thrust, however, because they feel the Amiga is capable of so much more than the machines for which these programs were originally created.
SigniFicantly, ail the [>rograms Cherry Lane is créât- ing for the Amiga use the saine basic data structure so you can use them together. Cherry Lane coordinated their work with Amiga to make sure the structure corresponds to the Amiga’s music software. Bv giving each program a reasonahlc price and making sure thev work together. The company hopes that musicians who buv one program will corne back for more. Future releases are likely 11 » include such programs as a voice editor to niodify sounds and switcli instruments, and voice- library management to keep track of the "voices" created with the sound sampling.
A rtistic License
One thing is sure: Both the company as a whole and its individuals are committed to the Amiga. Cherry Lane Product Manager Léo Clark sums it up convint- ingly: "I don’t own a synthesizer; 1 don t have a computer. The only thing 1 have is an upright piano. But looking at the Amiga, Fil Finally break down and take money out of my pocket and buv one. I don’t like having my hands tied with music programs. Most of the programs we do remove constraints, but we re limitée! By the hardware. However. With the Amiga, you have so niany options you can run wild. It’s never good to lie an artist’s hands, and the Amiga gives vou freedom. That’s the most important thing.”
Address ail authur corresfxmdenrr to Abigail Reifsnyder, 2 7
E. 85th St., Suite 396, Xn» York, XV 10028.
Call for Authors
OK. Enough small talk. You have the ideas and we want them. We know that you have been thinking and scheming and plotting and jotting down notes and even writing. Nice, neat, double-spaced, typewritten articles. Secreted away in desks. Closets, and fruit jars buried in the backyard. Dcn't deny it. You're an author. You know it and we know it. So why not give up this coy charade of anonymity and face facts?
Going to buy your Amiga article be- cause it is unique, interesting. Useful, provocative, erudite and, to put it bluntly, damn good.
It’s inévitable, but maybe you want to toy with us a little longer, hold out until we squirm. Perhaps you will write to us and ask for a copy of the au- thor's guidelines, even though you don’t really need them, just to make us suffer for an extra week or two.
Well, two can play at that game. If you don’t send us your Amiga-related article in the next few weeks, we might just prétend you don’t exist. We will just sit here at AmigaWorid Submissions 80 Pine St.
Peterborough, NH 03458 buffing our fingernails and counîing snowflakes until you break down, décidé enough is enough and send in your work.
We will see who is the stronger.. .worït we?
Sooner or later you are going to mail us your compositions with a seif- addressed stamped envelope (even though you are pretty sure we will buy your article and use the stamps for something else). And you are going to sit back as if nothing were going on, waiting those two to six weeks while we read it over, ponder, discuss and décidé. "The longer they take, the better my chances." You will say to yourself, but we both know how confident you are. Oh sure. We might take our sweet time, but in the end we are
80 Pine Street Peterborough, New Hampshire 03458
Programming in C: Speaking the Amiga’s Language
By Sheldon Leernon
You might say that the Amiga was responsible for introducing me to the C programming language. !n 1984 1 was fortunate enough to see an early prototype of what was then being called the Amiga Lorraine. I was oi course impressed with the graphies and sound démonstrations. But I was even more impressed with the fact that those programs had been written in a high-level language called C. l’p imlil that time, I had assumed that you just rouldn’t get that kind of performance out of a microcomputer without resorting to tedious assembly-Iaiiguage programming. Although I had heard a little ahout C in the pasi, 1 suddenly wauled to know a lot more.
f. ven as laie as a year and a hall ago, however, there was not much information availahle for programming in U cm nncrocoinpuiers, at least not in books that appeared in my local booksiorc. 1 hat’s because C was désignée! As part ol the Unix opérât ing system, whic h is used mostlv-on mainfraine and minicomputers. (Unix itseîf is written in C’,) Though Unix is a verv powerful and flexible opérai ing system (devcloped by AT&T’s Bell loïhoratories subsidiary), it bas not gained wide* spread acceptance for use on mit rocomputers as of yet. For one thing, Unix has a réputation for being so com- plex that only programmera who work with it clay after day realIy get to know and like it. For another, the Unix operating system usually includes a host of utility pre>- grams, making the size of the complété system far larger than those commonly associated with microcomputers.
Language of Choice
While rnicrocom|)uters have not advanced quite far enough te » reach the point where they comfortably support Unix, they have certainly reached the point where they are ready for (1. With older 8-hit micros, there are two lac tors that make assembly-language programming almost a necessity. First, lhe.se processors arc relatively slow, so only mat hine-hmguage programs run quickly enough te» achieve acceptable performance. Second, thèse machines are limited to 64K of memory (without using trickv hank-switching techniques), finis, they require the compact cocling that can only be achieved through the use of assembly language.
When the IBM BU was iritroduced, it may not have represenied a stariling technological breakthrough. But it dicl al least présent a system that used a slightly faster mic ioprocessor and that allowed for more RAM and larger mass storage than was previously availahle. On the software front, tliis meant that developers had a more fertile environment in which to dcvclop programs that were more powerful and easier to use.
Wtiting large, full-featuretl programs on the order 4 Lotus 1-2-3, however, is a massive tinclertaking. While assembly language a f Tords good performance and coin- pact code size, it is very difficulï and time-consuming to develop extremely large machine-language applications, and once such applications are developed, it is difficult to maintain and update them, What was needed was a language thaï offered sorne of the advantages of a high- ievel language, such as shorter development time and ease of maintenance, and yet produced programs that could fit in a 256K machine and offer good speed. For an încreasîngly large number of software developcrs, the C language seemed to offer the best range of fea* turcs. As a resuit, C has become the language of choice for software development on the IBM PC and similar microcomputcrs.
The C language has many features that make it a suit- able language for software development. It is a modem, structured language. Its design philosophy is based on the use of subprograms called functions. Each function that you create is a small, self-contained program thaï perforais a panicular task. This alîows the programmer to break down the overall task into manageable modules. Each module can be independently lested and debugged; when perfected, it can be incorporated into larger functions thaï perform more complex tasks. This modularitv not onlv makes it easier to write and maintain programs, but it also helps to eliminate duplication of effort. If you are writing several programs that each require the user to enter some spécifie kind of information (such as an amount expressed in dollars and cents), you can create one général module that will prompt the user and accept the input, and use the same module in each of your programs. In faci, commercial libraries of such commonly-used modules can be purchased.
Anoiher feàture of C is the kind of output it générâtes. Most C compilers create machine-language code that uses the sanie format as assembly-language programs, Such programs may run faster than compiled languages that generate semi-interpreted code, and ihey do not require any spécial support programs to run them, making them easy to operate and easy to distrib* ute, The programs created by a C compiler can be relative! Y compact. For one thing, C is not a big language. At the core level, C has only about a dozen keywords that could be considered commands. Ail of its inpud output functions, such as printing to the display screen, are included as a standard library of functions, In some cases, it is possible to compile a program using only those fonctions that are actually used in the program, thus reducing the overhead requirements of the final program.
Although C îs a higlvlevel language, it works doser to the machine level than many such languages. It has a n uni hcr of operators lhat manipulai? Individual bit ftelds t>1 data, which makes hardware-intensive program- ming casier. It also has good facilities for intégrât ing machine language into a program to speed up those portions where time-intensive computation occurs.
Finallv, C offers a fair degree of portability. Though in theory. There is not an “official” standard version of the language yet, in practice, versions of the language that are available for a wide range of computers, from micros to mainframes. Are very similar. Of course, programs that include any kind of graphies generally use very liardware-speeific display methods, making it hard to couvert them for use on computers with différent types ni display hardware. Sti11, by isolating these (iis- play routines into a small group of distinct functions. C programmers need only to couvert these fonctions to cnable their programs to operate on another machine. This makes it much casier to couvert a C program writ- ten for the IBM PC to the Amiga than it would be to couvert a similar program from IBM Basic to the distinct Basic dialect used on the Amiga.
Amiga and C
In addition to the inhérent virtues of the C program- ming language, the featlires of the Amiga are such that the computer lends itself particularly well to the development of software written in C. It has plenty of meni- ory, both for créai ing and executing large C programs. Its use of large, spccial-function coprocessors to take care of time-intensive tasks, such as graphies display management and animation, souncl and disk I O, frees the main microprocessor to run at a high rate of speed. T his means that sonie C programs which would execute too slowly on other microcomputers, will perform very well 011 the Amiga.
Another strong factor in its favor is that the Amiga operating system is designed to work with C programs. In fact, the operating system itself is partly written in C. One of the main feat lires of the Amiga operating System is that it offers support libraries of functions that allow programmers to easily take advantage of its power to display and animale graphies and text, or produce sound and speech, etc. These functions are set up to mesh pcrfcctlv with applications programs written in
C. In effect. C programmers can use the Amiga operating system as if it were a library of functions that are part of the C] language.
Despiie these many advantages, C is still used mostly by cxpericnced programmers. There are several reasons why neweomers might feel ititimidated h y the language. I*or one thing, it is a comptled, radier than an inter- pretetl, language. Using an inierpreted language like Basic is a very interactive expérience: it has a built-in
Lattice: The Developers of Amiga’s C
When Commodore-Amiga set ont to accjuire a C compiler for the Amiga, they turned to Lattice Inc. While the naine Lattice may not ring any bclls with you, it is a familiar one to software developers. Hundreds of the best known programs for t lie IBM PC were written in Lattice C. Among them are dBase III, Wordstar 2000, the Smart Software System, the Perfect family of programs and the Sorcim Il’S line of programs, which includes SuperCalcS.
Lattice was fdunded in 1981, but its three principals. Steve Mersee. Francis Lynch and Dave Schmitt, had known each other for several years prior to its incep- tion, having worked together in the software field. The company started with a compiler for minicomputers, and in 1982 released its compiler for the IBM PC. Though Lattice was itself a small company, the product was sooti pteked up by both Lifcboat Associates and Microsoft, who were able to give it widespread distribution. The IBM PC version of the compiler has won broad critical acclaim from the computer press. And its users currently numher more than 30,000.
Steve Herser, Director of Marketing for Lattice, attri- hutes its success to what lie calls “ego less program- ming." “We’re not interested in proving that we can write bel ter code than anyone else,” lie says. "Oui pri- mary concern has always been meeting the needs of our users.”
Although best known for its IBM PC compiler. Lattice has also donc specializcd software development for landv. Sony. Fexas Instruments and IBM, among oth- ers. or is it a si ranger to 68000-based svstems such as the Amiga, having already dcvelopcd C compilers for computers running under the CP M-68K operating System, and for the Sinclair QL, a 68008 sysicnt popular in Europe. The compiler that Lattice developed for the Amiga is thus a mature product, even though it was written for sut h a revolutionarv new computer.
The Family that Works Together
Herscc emphasizes that Lattice lias developed a family of products that work together, numbering 38 in ail. Ile is quick to point oui that Commodore commis* sioned Lattice not only to write the native Amiga version, but also to develop Amiga compilers for the Sun Microsystems and Stride 68000 development Systems and a etoss-compiler that runs on the IBM PC. “ This is signifiant, he said, “becausc it shows that Commodore is interested in supporting the whole spectrum of developers. From the smallest to the largest.”
Ail of these versions of the Lattice compilers func- tion iclentica 11 y, so developers who are familiar with any ol them will have no problem using the Amiga version. Lattice has also made efforts to ensure that besides being internally consistent, its line of compilers editor, and after you enter a line of code you need onlv type RUN to sec the program execule. Sonie Basics even provide syntax checking on entry, so that you gel instant feedback if you make a typing mistake. After running the program. If it doesn't function properly, you just list the bad lines. Make sonie changes and run the program again.
With a compilée! Language, you must first compose the source code using a text editor. Then, you use the compiler to change the source code to object code. Kinally, you use a linker program to couvert the object code to an exécutable format. If an error occurs at any stage (due to a typographical error in the source code, for instance), the vvhole procédure must he repeated again until the compilation process is successful. Onlv then can you run the program to déterminé whether or not it does what you want it to do. If it doesn't, you've got to load your text editor and try again. This is a far cry from Basic, where you type PRINT “HELLO", and the computer simply does it.
Newer is Nicer
La tel y, however, C has been made a lot more friendly for the less experienced programmer. Very sophisticated program text editors are now available. Sonie of which can even perform syntax checking, so that you don t have to wait until compiling time to discover syntax errors. Sotne interpreted versions of C have also appeared. These allow a programmer to devcîop programs in an interactive environment that is much more like Basic. 'I'he différence is that once programs have been written using the interpréter, they can then be compiled and run with a speed that Basic can't touch.
The atmosphère provided by the Amiga is much friendlicr 10 such development than that of most micro computers, even if you choose to use a C’ compiler instead of an interpréter. For one thing, the Amiga is a multitasking System. So instead of loading a text editor, a compiler and a linker in sequence every time you want to make a program change, it should he possible (if you have enough memory) to have each of these pro grains functioning simtiUaneoiisly. Although compiling and linking is usually a multistage process, AmigaDOS allows you to set up battit jobs that will perform the whoîe process automatically. Finally, if you have enough memory, you can use the AmigaDOS RAM devicc to put your files in a super-fast RAM disk, which will speed compiling time dramatically,
44C”ing is Believing
Des pi te ils réputation as a language for ski lied program mers, C is not much more difficult to master than a language like Basic. Perhaps the best way to convince you is to show you an example of a C program. The following are listings of two programs, one in C and one in Basic. Each produces a température conversion table from Fahrenheit to Celsius in steps of 20 degrees Fahrenheit, which looks like this:
ton form as closely as possible to industry standards, so as to a fiord maximum portability. They have made sure that their version of the language is in close conformity with the Unix System V standard. Hersec himself is a member of the ANSI committce that is currcmly work- ing on standarcliz.atioTi of the C language.
In addition to its C compilera, Lattice off ers a num* lier of programmer s utilities and function libraries, many of which should be available for the Amiga shortly after its release. Nor is Lattice alone in support- ing its compilera with auxiliary programs. Oulside ven- dora distribute dozens of such products, like "sinart" editors that can perform program syntax entry, C interprétera that provide an interactive development environment for programs that will later be compiled and function libraries that provide the “building blocks” for applications like custom databases.
Fulfiüing a Promise
While you may not fie interested in programming at ail, tlie availability of Lattice C and other C development tools, including cross compilera, for the Amiga is still very significant. Such widely used, wel! Supported software development tools that encourage portability of programs from one microcomputer to another will spur the early production of the kind of software that fulfills the promise of the Amiga's powerful hardware.
The C program is taken front page 8 of the classic text, The C Programming Language, by Kernighan and Ritchie.
* print Fahrenheit-Celsius table for f=0, 20..... 300 *1
int lower, upper. Step; float fahr, celsius;
lower = 0; * lower limit of tem
upper = 300; * upper limit *
step = 20; * step size *
fahr = lower;
while (fahr = upper)
celsius = (5.0 9.0)*(fahr - 32.0); printf(“%4.0f %6.1f n”, fahr, celsius); fahr = fahr + step;
Hcrc is the équivalent program in the dialect of Microsoft Basic found on MS-DOS machines like the IBM PC:
10 REM print Fahrenheit-Celsius table 20 REM
30 DEFIN T L,U,S 40 DEFSNG C.F 50 REM 60 LOWER = 0 70 UPPER = 300 80 STIP = 20 90 REM
100 WHILE (FAHR = UPPER)
110 CELSIUS = (5 9)*(FAHR- 32)
120 PRINT USING ;FAHR;
130 PRINT USING “ . ” ; CELSIUS 140 FAHR = FAHR + STIP 150 WEND
As you can see, the two programs arc not ail that différent. Let’s compare them line by line. To begin with, you will notice that the C program has no line numbers. The format of C is very free, and a single statement can take up one line, or many lines. This allows the programmer to make the program neat and readable. The First statement, wliich starts with the char- acters * is a remark, corresponding to the REM statement in line 10 of the Basic program. In C, the remark can extend over many lines until the closing * characters.
Next cornes the line Main( ). This defines the func- tion named Main. C programs are made up of func* lions, which are small subprograms. Every C program has at least one fonction, called Main, with which the program starts its exécution. T he parenthèses after the function name show that it is a function. Sonie func- tions contain the names of variables that the function opérâtes upon (called parameters) within these parenthèses, but Main( ) doesn’t use any, and thus is said to have an empty parameter list.
After the name of the function cornes a (brace) character. T hese braces are plentiful in C programs; they are used to mark the begin n ing and end of fonctions and the beginning and end of compound state- ments within a function. As shown here, most programmers use différent levels of indentation to help group tlie various pairs of braces together,
After the initial brace corne two strange looking statements:
int lowcr, upper, step;
float fahr. Celsius;
These are roughly équivalent to the DEITNT and DEFSNG statements in lines 39 and 40 of the Basic program. To tell the truth, though, those Basic lines were added more as a point of refcrence than anything else. Basic is not a strongly typed language; you don’t really have to specify to what kind of storage class a variable belongs (although most Basics give you the option to specify that it be stored as an integer and not in float- ing point représentation). With C, these statements are not optional. Whcnever you want to use a variable, you must déclaré ahead of time whether it’s an integer, a floating point or a text character string. These déclarations are made in a block at the top of the function définition.
When we compare the body of the program, we find that there are only two major différences. (One ni inor change in the Basic program was to change the variable name “STEP" to "STIP”, because the former is a Basic keyword.) The First is that Basic uses the Wend statement to definc the end of the While statement. C accomplishcs this by enclosing the whole body of the While statement within braces.
The other major différence is the way in which the results are printed. The C program uses a function called Printf( ). Which is not a part of the language program, but a part of the standard library of I O routines, This is an example of a function that takes parameters; the text and variables that appear within the parenthèses make up the data upon which the function opérâtes. It performs roughly the sanie task as Basic’s Print Using command.
The % and "f” characters are used to .specify that a décimal number is to be formatted. And the numbers
4. 0 and 6.1 are used to specify that the numbers are to be printed with four digits before the décimal place and noue after. And six digits before the décimal place and one after. Respectively. The Basic Print Using tem- plates “ ” and “ . “ do roughly the saine thing. The C Printf( ) function allows for multiple substitutions, while separate Basic statements are required for each formatted column.
Not Hard to “C”
It should be clear from the above example that once you get past the formai requiremems of function names, the braces and declaring variables, C is not as alien as you might have thought. This is not to say that C is just Basic in another disguise. There arc a number of powerful features found in C that are quite différent from Basic. However, there are enough similarities so that the beginning programmer can get started and can take in the différences little by little.
For most Basic programmers, these added features will be quite welcome. For example, C bas a multitude of powerful math and logical operators. The statement Fahr + = Step; may he less recognizable than Fahr = Fahr + Step, but it is a lot easier to type. C allows you to use either form. Programmers used to Basic, where If-Then-Else statements are limited to a single line, will appreciate the fact that in C, If and Else clauses can contain as many statements as desired.
It is obviously beyond the scope of this article to acquaint the uninitiated with ail of the delights of C programming. Hopefully, il will spur the interest of soine readers enough to investigatc further. The happy reader who does so will find much more material avaiF able than when I began a year and a half ago. Many of the larger bookstores have several C tilles available; I’ve seen sonie with over a dozen.
Where to Look
The following bibliography is a somewhat random sampling of titles that I have seen recemly. The Ker-
Circle 33 on Reader Service card.
nighan and Ritchic book is the standard référencé work; it defines the core éléments of the language, and is often referred to simply as “K&R," or “the White Bible." It is a reference that belongs on every C programmer shelf, but it is as dry as clust and definitely not a work to be approached lightly by tîie beginner. The ucxt two books on the list are représentative of the “first wave” of C books for microcomputer program- mers. They arc thorough vet understandable. The rest are newer. And though générally not as comprehensive (with the exception of Waite, Prata and Martin, which is 500 pages), they arc very easy for the beginner to undersland.
Kerniühan and Ritchie, The C Programming Lungnage (Prentice-Hall, 1978)
Kochan, Stephen G., Programming in C (Hayden, 1983) Purdum, Jack, ('Programming Guide (QUE, 1983) Stcwart, Warren A., Surepre Programming in C (TAB,
Traistcr, Robert. Going from BASIC to C (Prentice-Hall,
Waite, Prata and Martin, C Primer Pim (Sams, 1984) Wortman and Sidebottom, The C Programming Tutor (Brady, 1984)
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Metacomco: Developers of AmigaDOS
The name might not be familiar to you, but this small English company is the first name in Systems software development for the Amiga.
One ol' the surprises at the Amiga launch in July was the discovery that a small English software company, Metacomco, was rcsponsible for the development of Systems software for the machine.
AmigaDOS, a central component ol the Amiga’s advanced operating environment, was written at Metacomco. By launch date, they had also supplied Commodore with cross-development environments, a macro assembler. ArasiC. MCC ISO-validated Pascal and Cambridge Lisp.
Metacomco was formed just over three years ago. A strong “flavor” of Cambridge University pervades the company both of its technical directors, Dr. Tim King and Bill Meakin, receivec! Degrees there. Bill Meakin has overall responsibility for languages and compilers; Tim King ovcrsees Metacomco’s Systems development programs. Ail of Metacomco’s employées (about 25 in ail) exhibit great pride in the company s réputation for technical development expertise. Located in Bristol, England. The company also has a base in California.
Tim King, 30, Director of Research and Development, joined Metacomco in 1984 after eight years at Cambridge University and three at the University of Bath. Tim did his doctoral thesis on relational data- bases and has a continuing interest in this area.
In contrast to his colleague’s académie background, Bill Mcakins' experience lies in the commercial and applications areas. One of the company’s founders, he lias spent most of the last three years devcloping a range of Basic interpreters and compilers for Metacomco. In conjuction with Digital Research.
Commodore chose Metacomco to develop the multi- tasking AmigaDOS because they vvanted a company with extensive expérience with state-of-the-art systems
software. They also wanted a company that could meet the deadline (no small feat) and one that could port key programming languages for the Amiga by the launch. Metacomco delivered on ail counts.
What follows are descriptions of Metacomco’s AmigaDOS, AbasiC, MCC Pascal and Cambridge Lisp,
It should be apparent that their pride in “technical development expertise” is well founded.
AmigaDOS is a multiprocessing operating System that allows many jobs to take place simultaneously. Each AmigaDOS process represents a particular process of the operating system (e.g., the flling System). Only one process is running al a time, while other processcs are either waiting for something to happen or have been interrupted and are waiting to be resumed. Each process has a priority associated with it. The process with the highest priority that is free to run does so; processes of lower priority run only when those ol higher priority are waiting.
In devcloping AmigaDOS, Metacomco clrew heavily on an English operating system developed at Cambridge University, called Tripos. Tripos was designed as a powerful lool for computer science researeh.
A process called Command Line Interface (CLI) is providcd for use in AmigaDOS. CLI processes read command naines and then execute them. Comniands and user programs run under a particular CLI, or nnder the AmigaDOS Workbench Tfs possible to have multiple CLI s. each associated with a separate screcn window. The CLI accepts standard command lines, which can includc command files with parameter substitution and command I O redirection.
AmigaDOS gives the worn-out phrase “user-friendly” new vitality. Whenever something goes wrong, for example, typing WHY displays the reason for the fail- ure. Il the format of a command is forgotten, typing after the command in question displays its template.
AmigaDOS has about 40 user’s commands. These include file-utility commands (including a screcn and a line editor), CLI control commands, command sequence control commands and system and storage ma n âge m e n t co m ma n ds.
No preset liiiiiLs. In size, number and are restricted (to 30 char* udc File comments and _tion status, safe,” Each block has a header that 1 the next and previous blocks. Therefore, disk can be rc-created from one good block.
O this, the one good block is used to trace back to the coi e directory in a central track on the disk; from there, the pointers to ail the other blocks can be récréât ed.
Several physical devices and some îogical devices are provided by AmigaDOS. The physical devices include the primer (PRT:), disk drives (c.g., DFO:), seriaf parallel ports (SER; and PAR:) and the RAÿJ-'disk (RAM:), to naine a fcw. Logical deviç gftTre used to Ftnd certain Files that your progran may need. These devices use standard nanp That can be reassigned by the user to referciM Sny directory.
T he follm fj auguages are supported by
AbasiC, MCC Pascal 68000 and Cam- hpKfge Lisp (Metacomco); Amiga Basic (Microsoft): and TLC Logo (The Lisp Co.). It also supports a macro assembler and a linker.
AbasiC was spccially designed to access the Amiga’s graphies, sound and speech capahilities, and is, therefore, an excellent introduction to the powers of the machine. It is a port of Metaconico’s Basic 68000 interpréter with extensions and altérai ions.
The usual features of an interpretive Basic are provided in AbasiC: three numeric data types (integer and IEEE single- and doublc-precision float), arbitrary length strings, arrays and serial and random Files. In addition, the LIB- CALL function provides access to the Amiga’s ROM librar- ies, as well as any written by the user.
With the planned introduction of a compiler, AbasiC is an excellent tool for the development of commercial applications, as well as for personal use. The most prominent features are, however, the graphies, sound
and speech extensions built into the language. With these it is possible to write remarkably short and simple programs that create sophisticated effects.
Some of these commands will be familiar to Basic users, but be careful they have additional parameters that add a great range of control and flexihility.
The Screen statement defines a custom screen, allow- ing définition of resolution and col or depth. Window créâtes a window and, as an added feature, associâtes it with a Basic File number. The window in which text and graphies are to appear can be selected by setting the default File for the output.
tj)raw and Area draw and Ftll arbitrary polygons, and Pattern and Lincpat set Fill and line styles, respectively. PenF, PenB and PenO set area foreground, background and outline peu color registers. RGB sets the actual color représentation in a color register. Sshape reads a rectangle from the screen; Gshape writes it out.
Graphics objects can be saved in disk Files in combination with the File commands (RGet, Rput or Bload and Bsave). Sound uses the sound generators on any combination of the four audio channels.
Some unusual commands are: Animate, which créâtes a moveable image and sets it in motion; T ranslate and Narrate, which make Basic programs garrulous; and Wave, Period and Volume, which control sound génération.
MCC Pascal 68000
Pascal was originally designed as a teaching language and has become the most popular général program- rning language in computer éducation. MCC Pascal 68000 meets the international standard ISO 7185 level 0 and has been validated by the British Standards Insti- tute. As an implémentation of the standard, it will be of
Manx Aztec C68k Am The C for the Amiga
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Circle 31 on Reader Service card
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Manx Aztec C Software Development Systems are avail- able as cross and native development Systems, Manx Software Systems has provided C cross development Systems since 1980. No other C cross development System offers the complété, professional cross development environment provided by Manx. Every cross development system includes the optimized Aztec C compiler, an assembler, linkage editor, an object file librarian, a full set of UNIX and général utility libraries, and in some environments, such as MS-DOS and the Apple Macintosh, an array of time saving UNIX utilities like make, diff, and vi.
Manx also provides différent levels of Aztec C to meet the différent demands and budgets of a wide range of software developers. The commercial system. Manx Aztec C-c, includes an optimized C compiler, assembler, linker, object librarian, général library routines, librarv source, and extend- ed librarv- and utility routines, The developers system, Manx Aztec C-d, includes an optimized C compiler, assembler, linker, object librarian, and général librarv7 routines, The Personal system. Manx Aztec C-p, includes a less optimized C compiler, does not have an assembler, and has fewer library and utility routines. Each system is unbeatable for price- performance. Each system is upgradable.
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MCC Pascal is a one-pass native code compiler. The translator provicies clear, hclpful error messages in the case of syntax et rot s. One unusual feature is the provision of a runtime debug package. As an option, the translator produces "slow” code, incorporating check- ing and line number information. The source lines in which errors occur are idemifïcd at runtime.
Subroutines written in C are accessible through MCC Pascal s C interface. These include the whole of the Amiga's graphies, sound and speech libraries.
Cambridge L isp
Lisp is one of the oldest computer languages, having been devclopcd in 1957. It is a non-algorithniic, Symbol- processing language used often in artificial intelligence research. Il offers a llexibilitv of data and contre»! Structures unavailahle in other languages.
The popularity of Lisp bas been growing along with the rising interest in expert Systems, a practical application of artificial intelligence research. Lisp has been used extensively as a hase language for expert Systems development,
The provision of the full-function Cambridge Lisp on the Amiga represents a further step in the niovement toward providing expert system development tools for use on microcomputers. Cambridge Lisp 68000 is a nieinber of the standard Lisp family, and il is similar to Portable Standard Lisp.
Cambridge Lisp hclps in program development in a number of wavs. Using its Interpretive mode together with the trace package, the programmer can quickly and efficicntly develop and debug programs. It checks for exceptional cases and provides clear diagnostics.
Full tracing is available in both interpreted and coin- pilcd code, and the cote image may be dumped to aid in debugging. The control structure of Lisp, which includes rétorsion and function composition, allows the programmer t > use a “top-clown" approach to break complcx fu net ions into simplet units.
A large number of built-in fonctions are offered by Cambridge Lisp. The compiled and interpreted lunc- tions can be used interchangeably, and. Once devel- oped. A program can be compiled to improve its opération speed.
Hardware and software must be jointly developed for a high-performance multi-tasking DOS implémentation to be successful in computerese: You can’t retrofit concurrent y. Metacomco rose to the occasion. Lu tests, 50 tasks have been run simiiltaneouslv in différent Windows under AmîgaDOS.
The peuple at Metacomco had the bencflt of state-of- the-art design when they did their Systems development for ilie Amiga. T heir conlrihiition of ArnigaDOS, as well as mimerons optimizetl prograinming languages for the Amiga, should greatly benefit the success of this very unique computer.
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Digital Canvas is designed to be a showplace for Amiga artists. This issue features the work ofSheryl Knowles, Senior Graphie Artist at Commodore- Amiga.
Sheryl graduated from Oregon State University with a BS in Anthropology and minors in art, computer science and Asian studies. She moved to California in 1975 where she began ber career as a commercial artist and freelance iîlustrator, doing a little of everything: business stationery, advertising, paper-doll design, book and comic-book illustration.
In 1983, Sheryl becaine Amiga’s first artist, producing artwork for demos, user-interface design, icons and fonts.. .and just for fun, to push the machine to its ar- tistic limits.
Sheryl is enthusiasiic about the possibilités that the Amiga offers for artistic expression. "Computers are not traditionallv considered to be artist1 s tools," she says. “But the Amiga is revolutionary in that it will make the computer a t easonable tool for an artist. And because it will be availahle to so many people, more people than ever will discover their artistic abilities.
‘Tm a traditionalist. I like the old masters. ï don't see how computer art differs very much from conventional art, What you can do with paint and a canvas you can also do with pixels and a monitor screen. The principes are the same."
“What you can do with paint and canvas you can also do with pixels and a
L C A N V A S
I T A
D I G
By George Por
Protocol is designed to help you tap the potential of your Amiga as a télécommunications tool -for business, pleasure and profit.
If you’re among those Smart enough to know that thcy can bccome even smarter by using the Amiga for telecommunicating, then you should enjoy reading Protocol. Our key criterion for picking communications products, pcople and applications to write about is:
Will the story inspire someone to try new things that can enhance one’s work or add more pizzazz to onc's 1 iCe? You’ll tell us whether or not Protocol is meeting that standard.
As we approach the end of this millennium, we’re facing situations tliat one can sec alternatively as crises, or as challenges and opportunities. Those with llexible communications Systems will tend to he the winners. Learning how to unleash the power of the Amiga as a far-reaching communications tool can be your winning ticket in the years to corne.
There are sonie lechnical extras built into the Amiga. Most of the pcrsonal computers on the niarkel can perform the sanie basic communications functions, pro* vidcd that you have the right software. Beyond the hasics, the Amiga has in store for you opportunities not available to users of any other micro. Por example, you can: increase the usefulness of text or other files you reçoive online by color coding them for easy identification and retrieval; work on other programs while in Terminal mode without wasting expensive connect time; and send electronic greeting cards with sound to Moin for hcr next birthday, just to mention a few.
Once you look into the more serious things you can do with the Amiga, such as accessing some ol the mush- rooming on-line communications, transaction and information services, you’ll he dazzled by your options. You might even begin to fee! The cffccts of information overload. The best way to avoitl tliis is to décidé what
Photograph by Edward Judice
you want to hear about, what your priorities are, and match them with what is available. To facilitate this décision making, we’ve compiled a list of Amiga-ori- ented télécommunications topics that might appear in future issues.
When you want the Amiga to “talk” to any other computer outside your premises, you need a device that translates its digital signais into analog signais that the phone system can pick up and forward. That device is a modem (nwdulator efemodulator). Modems corne with many différent combinations of a variety of features. Before deciding which one to buy, you may want to find out, for example, what it would imply to get one with transmission capacity roughly equal to 300, 1200 words per minute, like Commodore-Amiga’s own 1200 RS, or 2400 words per minute, such as Tecmar’s T-Modem. This and many other modem questions will be answered in upcoming Protocol installments.
Communications software falls into three différent catégories: access, host and terminal software. Access programs are tailored to “talk with” spécifie on-line databascs, such as Dow Jones, Dialog or Lexis Nexis. A host program is what you need when, for example, you want to set up a neighborhood bulletin-board service. You’ll probably have to wait a while before seeing access and host software for the Amiga. Terminal software does the postman’s job by delivering messages and flics to and froin your computer. Fortunatcly, terminal programs, which arc used tlie niost frequently, arc alrcady here. Vvc might even have a review of onc in oui next issue.
Nuls and Bolts of Getting Ready to Communicate Il you think hardware (the Amiga itsclf and a modem) plus communications software arc alî you need to go on-line, ihen you'rc in for a surprise. “Brainwarc" is even more important than hardware or software; this includes knowing how to set tlie switches, how to reduce connect-time charges and how to shorlen your learning curve.
What You Should Knoiu about “Telelaw”
Since millions of modems are whirring in American homes and offices, state and fédéral legislators have
network that you form with your Amiga is a hotbed ofpromising ven- tures and new; more effectiveforms ofhuman communication.
Slarted to figure oui what they should regulate and what they shouldn’t. Ifs tiot an easy job, because no one can predict the long-tcnn implications of any law related to a fast-changing industry and volatile télécommunications usage patterns. We’ll keep an eye on what "lelelawmakers” are cooking up and will talk more about it later.
Bulletin-boaid Systems (BBSs) are the information age descendants of the good oF grocery store bulletin boards. You can use them for a variety of purposes, such as buying and selling, flnding a roommate, swap- ping public domain programs, playing computer gaines and sharing the latest news on Amiga products. Rccently, numerous corporations startcd to use bulletin boards for on-line press conférences, customer and shareliokler relations and ollier internai and external public relations fonctions. Front time to lime, we’ll give you a rundown of Amiga-oriented BSSs and some novel applications foi them.
Electronic Mail Services Compared
Ijsing electronic ma il, you can put the lelter or dot liment that you’ve just writlen in the hands of an address- ee within minutes. Think of the différence it can make
în the use of your time! The battle is heating up among e-mail giants. You, their current or future customer, might well benellt front it. The increasing compétition between MCI Mail, Fédéral Express* Zap Mail, Western Un ion's FasyLink, C encrai ElectriCs Quick-Comm, ITT Dialcorn and the others mav bring lower priées, but it will still be up to you to figure ont which of them ofiers the inix of’ features most suitable to your working conditions and communications needs. Rcading a comparative overview of them in Protocol may save you hundreds of hard-carned dollars in Consulting fees.
Computer-Assisted Group Communications
Il you are a member ol any geogtaphically dispersed group a bi-coaslal farnily, a rescarch team, an international association, a inultisile task force, etc. and you need to généra te group synergy in spitc of die distance, computei assisted group communications systems are the atiswer. I here are 25 vendors selling or liceiising the software that mariages group communications iraffic. We will report to you on both state-of-the-art developments and interesting uses of thèse text-based conferencing systems.
The Land of LAN: Local Area Networks
Ufs say people in your work group are located in the saine building and you’rc looking for a set-up whcre- by each ot your computers can senti and receive docu ments to and froin one another. You may want to bave each computer share expensivc péri plierais insteacl of buying a laser printer or an optical disk drive for each of them. What you are looking for is called a Local Area Network (LAN). What LANs are availahle for Amiga users? Who supplies them? What are the advan- tages and tlrawbacks of local vs. distributed network architecture? Answers ic> these questions may be forth* coming in future issues.
The Big Three of Electronic Utilities
The Source, CompuServe and Delphi are the three largest electronic on-line utilities, providing hundreds of information, communications and transaction services to a quarter of a million people. The ways in which you can use these huge electronic utilities are limited only by your imagination. You can buy and scll stocks, read the latest éditions of newswires, chat with the editors oi electronic magazines, download programs of interest to you or juin or form an on-line group of Amiga users. Each (il these three higgies is so unique that it deserves a separate article reviewing ils offerings.
The Vidéotex Connection
lu a l’cw years, wlien we look back at 1985, we’ll say it was the year of the Amiga in desktop computing and the year of vidéotex in personal computer commun ica- lions. We will have seen: vidéotex systems allowing transmission of both text and graphies between the Amiga and a host computer; banking and shopping without leaving home; and ordering ilinner froni menus visitaily displayed 011 screen. We’ll discuss the promises of vidéotex and services that start to fol- 1111 them.
I here are about 2,500 commcrcially availahle on line datahases that you can access with your Amiga. Ail aspects ofhuman knowledge are covered, lroin busi-
Circle 27 on Reader Service card.
For Your Amiga™ PC
Not Just 1-2-3 in Mouse Clothing
VIP Professional is totaily faithful to the 1-2-3 standard. In fact, vou can send ''1-2-3” files created with Professional to he used with 1-2-3 itself, or with versions of Professional on the Apple , the Macintosh, the Atari ST, IBM's even UNIX computers. But like the Amiga itself, Professional also has the spirit of a daring maverick. Just as the Amiga outstrips the power and performance of the business computers, VIP Professional rneets and outfeatures Lotus. Compare foryourself:
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VIP Professional will do your finances, keep your inventory, graph your sales, and a whole lot more.
1 23 Graphics
Available on Amiga
Easy to use
Call lt Intuition
VIP Professional is easy to use because it takes advantage of the Intuition environment and other élégant features built into the Amiga. Throw in lots of lielp, a thoughtful tutorial for the novice, and a thorough reîerence manual, and you
132 Aero Camino, Santa Barbara, CA
VIP Prolf.vion.il, VIP Analyvy VIP fri-rlantr VIP Consultant and VIP tn'rihought arc trademark*. Ol VIP Toi hnologiç*; Loi- uv 1-2-1 is a Iradi'inark of Lolus Oi'vi'IoihiutH Corporation Amiga and Intuition an* Irademaiks of Commodore Business Machines *1‘)85 By VIP Tôt hnulogics h ave the makings of the perfect powerhouse product for the office, school and home. And at the super low price, VIP Professional is as easy to afford as it is to use,
The universel clream - to havc 1-2-3 power on your Amiga lias c orne true. VIP Professional' is a program identical in features and commands with 1-2-3. The same spreadsheet analysis, information management and extraordinary business graphies. Ail combinée! In one easy-to- learn, easv-to-afford package. What's more, VIP Professional not only has ail the features of 1-2-3, you cari also type the same keys to do the same things. Or betteryel, use a mouse to make it ail so much simpler.
Just a Hint of Things to Come
VIP Technologies is on the move. VIP Professional is the first of several products for your Amiga nearing completion, ail of which will interaetwith each other.
Expect to see soon:
VIP Analysis" - A statistical and analyti- cal tool to integrate and manage information created with VIP Professional or Lotus 1 -2-3.
VIP Freelance" - A complété text processor with tu11 formatting capabilities, plus a complété workbench of writer's tools,
VIP Consultant" - A projoct
management program to help design, orgumze and implement any complex task at hand.
VIP Forethought" - An outline processor useful for organizing any mental activity. Our software will make your Amiga investment one of the best you have ever ma de.
Although VIP Professional will sell for $ 199.95 after Feb. 1, '86, as a spécial introductory offer, you can get this product for the low price of:
If Your Dealer is Out of Stock, Order Direct.
In California call:
Order Status and Software Questions, Call:
Mail ordeiv for shipping and handlmg add Sim the U.S. Su Canada S2Ü ûverveas) California roidents add 6% ta COD v and Purihave Orders Will MOT he accepter! Per-.on.il ihitU mil he hold for ihree weeks to ilear. Ail prn fs arc -uhjet t lo i h.mcr withoul nolne
* S 12k Keiommendt'd
Software Submissions Encouraged
tiess, science and law to polilics, religion and current affairs. The hardest thing is figuring out where to fmd
what you need to know. We'll share with you a few sim-
[)le but effective tricks of the trade.
Cet a “Teleducation ”
Computer-assisicd learning is a new way to earn a degree, learn about the secrets of French cuisine from a native chef or refresh your knowledge of anything taught in the hundreds of courses offered on-line by many académie and non-academic institutions. In Pro- tocol, current users of this new educational vehiclc will tell you what to cxpect as an on-line suident or teacher.
A récent Pacific Bell ad States, . . In the next few years, in the greater Los Angeles area alonc. There will he 800,000 people telecommuting to their jobs, using light-wave highways instead of freeways.” Even if this figure is inflated, PacBell is right on track. Each year there are more people who send their work from home via computer to the corporate switchboards.
Electronic Networking for Fun and Profit
Modems, software, LAN s and other technical issues wouldn’t really be worthwhile if thev didn’i enrich your
* J J
personal or professional life. Electronic networking is a new game in which every participant can win. The personal or business network that you form by using your Amiga as a telecomputer is a hotbed of promising ven- tlires and new, more effective forms of human communication.
The Future of Amiga Communications
I he Amiga is the only truc multisensory telecomputer on the market. What is a multisensory telecomputer? Try to picture yourself in a situation in which you have to instantaneously convey a complex message to a geographicallv dispersed audience. The Amiga gives you a dazzling array of bright colors, high-resolution animated graphies, text, voice and stereo music to combine into a powerful message.
Multisensory personal and business communications open to us opportunities of unpredictable scope. Protocol readers may take the lead in exploring and creating those opportunities. YouTl be among the first to know what third-party developers are preparing for Amiga's videoport. Also, be sure to write to us about your own télécommunications applications.
How to Reach Protocol
These topics are a sampling of what we have in mind for future issues. Let us know what you think. If you have a modem and a subscription to The Source or CompuServe, you can drop a line to our electronic mailbox. Of course, USPS mail is welcome as well. Please address any suggestions, thoughts or comments to AmigaWorld éditorial, 80 Pinc St., Peterborough, NH 03458.
Sec you on-line!
WHEN IT S TIME TO MAKE YOUR MOVE
Circle 23 on Reader Service card.
Lattice® Cross Compilers Help You Hit Your Target On Time
Lattice Cross Compilers let you take advantage of the speed and structure of a larger System to develop C programs for popular 68000 personal computers!
Use your MS-DOS, fBM mainframe, DEC minicomputer, or UNIX system to give you centralized source management, rapid compilation, and access to high- speed peripherals. Since the Lattice C Cross Compilers are fully compatible with the native compilers, you can compile and link on the mainframe or the micro interchangeably.
The industry-standard Lattice 68000 C Compiler for the Amiga is available for IBM MS-DOS, PC-DOS, VM CMS and MVS TSO, DEC VAX VMS and VAX UNIX, and a variety of MC68000 UNIX and iAPX XENIX Systems. Lattice also provides an assembler, linker and librarian for each host system plus the appropriate file transfer software so you can move source and object code between the host and the microcomputer.
Make your move now. Call Lynn Magnuson at Lattice todav!
We practice portability.
Lattice, Inc. • P.O. Box 3072 • Glen Ellyn, IL 60138 Phone (312) 858-7950. TWX 910-291-2190
International Sales Offices: BENELUX: De Vooght. Phone (32)-2-720.91.28 ENGLAND: Roundhill. Phone (0672) 54675 JAPAN: Lifeboat, Inc. Phone (03) 2934711
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We do not sell the Amiga Computer. Many of the products listed may not be available at time of printing. Please call for price and delivery.
• PRINTERS •
• MONITORS •
300 Green ..3129.00
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Color 600 Hi-Res (640x240) 3399.00
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JB 1201G 1205A ...(ea ) $ 99.99
JB 1270 .....3139 00
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1460 Color ..$ 269 00
1410 RGB ..$ 669.00
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Volksmodem 300 1200 $ 189.00
Signalman Express .5299.00
Lightnmg 2400 Baud ...$ 399.00
Smarimodem 300 ......$ 139.00
Smartmodem 1200 ......$ 389 00
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The following is a partial listing of software being developed with pians to be marketed by third party software vendors Please call for pricing and expecied deliveries.
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Rags to Riches
Print Shop ....Welcome Aboard
Ensemble ..Sound Vision
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Adventure Construction Set ..M.U.L.E
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Sky Fox .Marble Madness
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THE SOFTWARE GROUP
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IN PA 1-800-233-8950
477 East Third Street, Dept. M311, Williamsport, PA 17701
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Keeping Track of Small Businesses
The image of accounting. Ho hum. That about sums up the image of accounting for most of us. Thick, bor- ing books filled with numbers and used only by big companies at tax time to Find loopholes. Understand- able onlv to CPAs and 1RS auditors small, humorless
inen with how ties, glasses and zéro personalities. À tedious but necessary evil of businesses everywhere. Accounting is keeping track keeping track of money or numbers or inventory or debts or orders. The fanci* est accounting software in the world is not going to make the business of accounting any more exciting or fun, but in order to justify the existence of any computer in the business market, there has to be some sort of accounting software available. After ail, that's what computers were invented for.
Accounting software varies greatly. From phenome- nally complex programs that do more than any business could posssiblv hope for at high costs in both purchase price and time involved with learning the program and maintaining the System, ail the way down to semi-adequate programs with cheap price tags and cheap results. Neither option is particularly attractive to the businessperson looking for an accounting package. Most people who are in the market for accounting software want to make one purchase without a lot of fuss and have the software perforrn up to their expectations.
If that means spcnding extra money, then in many cases, the money will be spent. But there are problems. An expensive package implies a comprehensive package, and that implies a complicated piece of software that is going to take a long time to learn (unless you are already an accountant, in which case you already know exactly what you want). On the other hand, a simple program may not bc comprehensive enough to do ail the things that a businessperson might require.
There are also the problems of transferring existing records over to a new system of accounting, deciding on the proper hardware configurations to do the things required, and, for most of us, there is a problem of learning enough about accounting in the First place in order to make an educated décision. Lct’s assume that the computer to be used will be an Amiga. The hardware questions then become ones of memory, storage and printed output.
First Things First
Varîous “experts” have said that it is better to shop for the software First and then gct a computer that can run the packages that you want. There is a lot to be said for this approach, but there should also be a caution here. Just because a particular software package is the best for doing something on a particular computer, it may not be the best software of its kind running on any computer. The best accounting software that runs on a $ 70 computer may not be the best accounting software anywhere, and the best accounting software that runs on a $ 700 or $ 7,000 or $ 70,000 computer may not be the best for your particular needs. So where does that leave us? First, perhaps, we should détermine just who needs accounting software.
If you run a multibillion-dollar company wûth hundreds of employées, then you probably already have a few full-time accountants working for you and they have devised a system that works, so you don’t need any advice. Besides, anything that runs on a microcom- puter probably wouldn’t fulfill your needs anyway. At the other extreme, if you work at a pizza parlor as a dishwasher, live by yourself and walk to work every day, then accounting software is probably not high on your list of priorities. But, if you fall somewhere in between these two examples, then it might he worth your while to investigate computer accounting.
The people who will benefit most from an accounting package are those who could be stereotyped as entrepreneurs, yuppies or one of the many in the great sea of self-employed small-business people: consultants, small manufacturers, farmers, ranchers, people with
The Amiga can bc likened to a Steinway grand piano. A good pianisl will produce good music from a Steinway. But a virmoso will use it to impart bis unique, magnificent interprétation ol ihe world.
By Dash Chang Président, Chang Labs
Software Virtuosos Will Compose Masterpieces for the New Amiga
Amiga’s Speed., Color, Graphics and Sound Capabilities Promise a New Génération of Easy-to- Comprehend Applications
Similarly, a good software house will develop good applications that make the Amiga perform, but a great software publishcr will compose masterpieces for the Amiga that touch the soul and delight the senses.
New standards in graphies, color, sound and speed promise to bring excitement to the Amiga, the first real innovation in personal computing since the Macintosh. However, before any truly innovâtive applications bestow the fn 11 promise of the Amiga, a bit of time will pass. So it goes with ail new, standard-setting inventions.
I he software virtuosos who will emerge for the Amiga will create programs that are not only easy to use but easy to comprehcnd also. At the saine time, these programs will deliver functional features to make daily computing tasks casier.
Chang Labs, like other software developers, requires great tools like the Amiga if we are to develop new programs with the speed. Resolution and communication capabilities that will raise our products above the ordi- nary. Without such superior tools, we are no botter off than the piano virtuoso who vainly tries to create the saine timbre, résonance and sublety with a broken- down honky-tonk upright that he raises from a Steinway grand.
Chang Labs créâtes accounting software solutions for small businesses. Traditlonally, accounting has proven the mosi difiïcnlt business application to communicate to others, so our task bas been a challenge.
With our IBM PC version of Rags to Riches (Chang Labs’ best-selling small-business accounting sériés), we achieved speed. Because the package is RAM based, the resuhs ol each transaction can be seen instantaneously on screen. W ith our Macintosh version of Rags to Riches, we went one step further and added visual impact. Because the package is window-based as well as RAMbased. Records and instant results are always available on screen. Both accotn[>lishments, we believe, have eased the users' abilîty to comprehcnd accounting. Rags to Riches, introduced in the fall of 1984, jumped into the top ten in accounting software retail sales this past spring, according to a national survey conducted by Eastman Publishing for Computer Merchandising magazine, an industrv trade journal.
VU V'a.wiii(îw ricrinn
The Amiga’s future impact on accounting software will rest primarilv in its new standards ol’ visual communication speed. Graphies and color (and over* lapping color). As we ali know, most peopte responcl casier to graphies than to wordy tcxl.
Ail of the Amiga’s features are intertwined. However. As software developers, we will be tested to our utmost to communicate ideas tlirough graphies hased on speed. For example, if bringing a piciure up 011 a computer screen takes four seconds, the visual image is 110 longer an effective communication device because of its slowness. (Believe me, four seconds is an eternity to vétéran computer users.)
On the other hand, il the computer dravvs a complex picture in .1 seconds and in color to boot then the visual image brings a new. Positive dimension to communications between vou and your computer.
Don't mistakc picturcs for tiny icons or Donkey Kong in 96 shades of every color of the rainbow. In business applications, think of picturcs 111 ternis of a single invoice among 2.000 other invoices stored in your computer s memory. Then think of putting that single invoice on your screen in .1 seconds and with such high resolution and color that you can quickly under- stand the information before you.
I liât is the promise the Amiga holds! Animation capabilities extern! Tliis new machine’s visual impact even further. Animation communicates without sound and words by drawing your attention to critical factors showing cause and effect.
The Amiga’s sound capabilities hold the most excit- ing potcntial for fulfilling the expectations of the computer user. Unfortunately, speech is the area of computer science hardest to undersiand. We are, however, plunging beadlong into discovering how to inte- gratc speech capabilities into our products with meaningful. Easy-to-understand resuhs.
Ihe Amiga is a milestone in personal computing. It will attract thousands of software developers who will create the next génération of exciting, casv-to-compre- hend applications. From them will emerge the Amiga software virtuosos itnparting their knowledge and interprétations of the personal computing work! Through sound. Speed. Color and graphies.
Investinents and stocks, inultiple-incomc families.. . Just about anyone could gain from an accounting package, even il it does nothing more than make you aware of your financial status, This does not mean that going out and buying an accounting package to run on your Amiga ts going to turn your life around or fatten your bank balance overnight, but there are very few people in the world who can keep track of ail their financial responsibilities in their heads.
Accounting software is a form of checkbook on disk. If you can’t be bothered to keep your records on paper, then computcrizing your books isn’t going to do you a whole lot of good. If. However, the reason that you couldn't do it on paper was a question of time aîone, then putting your books 011 a computer might be just the thing for you.
Computers werc meant to make things casier for humans not do everything. They still can’t rcad minds or walk through the warehouse and take inventory at the end of the year. Any accounting package is only as good as the data entered. But, if you can keep entries fairly up to date (and that doesn’t mean rushing to the computer the moment you make a sale or vvrite a check) and would rallier let the computer do a lot of the work for vou, then it is probable a good idea to look into accounting software. A good package should let you figure your net worth, track the profitabilité of your business, keep records for tax time, provide an audit trail, Help locale problem areas, print out transaction reports and generally provide financial status information without too much pain and frustration.
What is Accounting Software?
As mentioned above, a good accounting package should provide you with a method of keepitig track of your financial status, whether it is the incoine status of the inveslment property you bought last year or the status of your burger-in-a-basket restaurant. One of the biggest problems that many small busincsses run into (and you can think of anything more than a single pay- check each week as a small business) is making the transition from checkbook accounting to something a bit more sophisticated. You mav have finaneed your business out of your savings, but sooner or later. You’re going to want a loan from a bank or investors, and they are going 10 want some cotd, hard reasons for giving vou uioney. And even if vou never intencl to borrow
monev, you will have to fill out an incotne tax form every year, and an accounting package can make April 15th a little easier to face.
A minimum accounting system is a général ledger that tells you how much monev you are making (or 1ns- ing) by keeping track of where your monev is coming front and where it is going. Fi should also provide a balance sheet showing assets, liabilities and net worth and an income statement or profit-and-loss statement. Like a databasc, an accounting prograin bas to be set up with a "chart ofaccourus” hefore you can divc in and start eiitering sales records and check mitnbers and printing invoices.
Most accounting software cornes with a nuniber of dif férent modules to cover varions business applications, such as accounts receivahle, accounts payable and sales, which may ail he separatc modules. If you are going to need some or ail of these types of program s, be sure that they can ail work with the saine information, or you may end up doing a lot more data entry than vou anticipated. You should also he certain that the package you décidé 10 buy will be able 10 expand with your business. (You do expect your business to expand. Don’t you?) And probably the most important feature in any accounting package is its flexibility. The software isn’t going to do you much good if it can only keep track of 90% of your income or accounts, and the odds are excellent that your business is unique in some way. Be sure that the software is casily modifiable to suit your spécifie needs.
Why Accounting Software?
There are a nuniber of reasons for considering accounting software for your Amiga. The best reason is that you know what it can do to save time and money.
Good accounting software is better than seat-ofthe-
Just about anyone can gain from an accounting packageeven if it does nothing more than give financial status information.
Pants bookkccping. ït should let your business grow without too much strain and even help your business grow bv providing detailed information about the status of the business. If you can accurately track where you are spending the most money or making the most money, then you should be able to capitalizc 011 that information.
Taxes are simplified when you can get a printout of ail income, expenses, loans, debts, etc., ail in a nice. Neat report gencrated at the end of the year, By providing an audit trail, an accounting package might keep you out of jail (or put you in one), but an audit trail can also be used to find discrepancies, mistakes and even employée crime. You should also save money on accountants’ fees. By seeing the bottom line of your venture, you may discover that you are better off than you thought, or thaï it is time to quit.
Obviouslv, there are thousands of reasons to think about accounting software, and for many people, the onlv reason to think about buying the Amiga computer is that there is good accounting software available for it. Lu some cases, the software alone is going to make elie purchasc of an Amiga wortlnvhile, and the fact that
This grim scénario has unfotded too many rimes in 1 lie pasl: An uninitiated small-business owner spends a fevv thousand bucks for an expensive personal coin* pulcr syslem, pours in hundreds of dollars more for highlv complex software and shells ont another grand for installation and training. Then. At the moment of mnli, he discovers that the new system won’t do the work it was supposed to do.
Computerizing Small Businesses
Rags to Riches Accounting Software Developer Advises Computer Novices On How to Select Software Packages
The expense problern has been solved with the arrivai of the Amiga. Now small-business owners finally bave a computer they can cali their own. And it sells at a small-business price.
But what about the software, the programs that make the Amiga perform ils feats of magic? How can you. The small-businessperson, flnd the right software for your exact needs?
Kirst-time computer buyers are t lie most susceptible victims of software “overbuying" or "wrong-buying." But with thousands of software programs on the market (sonie estimâtes put the number of lit les at more lhan
30. 000), where does t he novice go to get reliable information?
Chang Labs, developer of the Rags to Riches small- business accounting sériés for the Amiga, suggests five dependable sources:
• Colleagues in your fleld, who alreadv have computer- ized their businesses.
• Your business trade journals, which often publish articles about computerizing.
• Computer traclc magazines, which continually spot* ligln new software programs.
• Libraries and bookstores, which are stacked with computer books of almost every i 1 k.
• Amiga computer outlets, where experts specialize in packaging the right business software solutions.
To address the needs of small businesses, Chang Labs, headquartered in San José, California, decidccl to publish its own sériés of “How to Computerize" books cxclusivclv for small-business owners.
“L'ntil reccntly, our industry virtuallv ignorée! The small-business market in favor of the Fortune 1000, éducation and home markets." Admitted Darhsiung "Dash" Chang, founder and président of the company that beats bis namc.
"Surveys show that onlv a few of America's millions of small businesses have computerized their accounting procédures, and ifs the industrv's fault. We have failed to educate small business about the benefus of computerizing. And ibis is in spite of the fact that a Dun and
bradstreet survev sbowed that the number one software
application for businesses with 100 or fewer employées is accounting.”
Chang Labs has alreadv published three "How to Computerize" books and is currcntlv distributing them to small-business owners through its 1,200-strong nationwide Rags to Riches dealer network.
“YVe believe our grass roots educational cainpaign is the most effective way of explaning how computers can benefît small businesses." Chang said. Current titles in the Rags to Riches "How to Computerize" library are The Sentier Business Management (initie, The Retail Business Management Guide and A Personal Finance Guide, with sug* gested retail prîtes of S9.95 to $ 14.95 each,
“Our three 'How to Computerize* books address the immédiate needs of a myriad of small businesses, including service and retail businesses, professions, small manufacturing plants, farms and ranches, Consulting firms, home operated businesses, warehouses any small business,” Chang said. The books are written with humor and in layman’s language so the prospective computer owner docsn’t have to he an accounting whiz or a computer buff to understand them.
Chang concluded, “ The small-business market is emerging; ifs just a matter of time before one small* businessperson tells another who tells another and so on. . . Until every small-husitiess owner discovers he can benefît front computerizing just as big business real ized long ago."
The Amiga can do things other than accounting is just a bonus, t se the accounting software to keep track of everything, a word processor to write reports, the graphies to show how things are going in the business and a modem to both galber and send out information.
It's not hard to imagine an en tire business based on one or more of the capahilities of the Amiga computer. . Jet’s say, a graphie artist or an advertising agency that uses the Amiga’s graphies, animation and sound along with an accounting package to keep their
Shop carefully, analyze your needs and hope for the best. You have a great computer to start with, and if you bought it strictly to run your business, then it's tax déductible!
Books. Their reports, business letters, bills and invoices can be generated by the Amiga; it can even entertain executives after hours. This may seem like a hit much. But consider ail the small businesses that are going to he using one or more of the Amiga's everyday features and the businesses that will spring up because oflhose features that are unique. Each of those small businesses will have to keep accourus of some sort, and sincc they will already have the machine, for a small extra expense they can make the Amiga that much more use- fui. F.ven the rock band that uses the Amiga's sound and music features will need to keep track of income, expenses, equipment, etc.
Obviously, we haven’t covered ail the bases hcre. A lot could be said about things such as awareness of how revenues are booked (carned, accrued, etc.) or how a particular piece of software handles crédit, the différences between single-and double-entry bookeeping Systems, or the number of accounts that a package can hanclle, etc. Abovc ail. Rememhcr to shop carefully, analyze your needs and hope for the best. At least you have a great computer to start with, and il you bought it strictly to run accounting software for your business, then it's tax déductible!
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Ease of use and flexibility high- l igh. T A rk tron ics Co rpora t i on ’s Amiga word proc essor.
Layout Styles Extra s
New Docunent .4. |en Docu«ent
Qui t Textcraft
• 40 1
Developer: Arktronics Corporation
52(1 East Liberty St. Ann Arbor. Ml 48104
Publisher; Commodore-Amiga, Inc.
983 University Ave. Los Gatos, CA 95030 408 395-6616
List Price: $ 99.00
A vvorcl processor is a pretty straightfbr- ward piece of software. You should be able to enter text on the computer keyboard, edit the text, save and load it on disk, and finally send it to a printer. Everything beyond that is extra. There is a snobbcrv
about word processing. Implying that the more features you have the better, Rut il you ask someone who uses word processors every day, you will flnd that there are only a few basic editing and fonnatting com- mands necessary to make a word processor useful.
Sornetimes the more commands a word processor contains, the harder it is to use. With so many things to remember. Il can take months of fatniliarization before vou can type without the manual on your lap. Yet, no matter what the word processor is, a computer isiVt a computer imless there is a word processor for it, and that word processor had better be flexible enough to cover most of the bases.
Almost no one needs ail the features of a complicated word processor, but if vont particular program doesn't do that one thing you need for a particular job, then it isn't enough. A novelist may never need to enter text in columnar form, but he must he able to print extra long documents in douhle spacecl format. Sotne people tan t spcll their own naines without a spclling c liée ker; sotne can’t remember six com- mands, let atone sixty. Sotne people don t rare what a letter looks like until ît cornes oui ol the primer, while others need to see each page on st reçut exactlv the wav it s going to print. Sonie will want to use a word processor strieah to send text over a modem, while most people will need a word processor that will work with their particular printer (and there are hundreds of différent primers ont there that each need their own peculiai control codes and signais in order to work at ail).
Rite main points of any worcl processor are that il be llexible enough to handle most word processing jobs, vet simple enough to Irai n in a relativeh short perioef of time. It should be able to work with almost any kiml of printer. From a thermal dot matrix to an expensive laseï printer. It should have the features that vou need. Like télécommunications capabilities, a spclling c lin ker or a leature foi merging with other
r j Mi tins Tnt
| Single S?ace
Left i l Center GG j Hight I Flush
b±SfJ ... .*
w 3 n : e i
©Inserting New Text O O .
i Minute Tutorial s
_ O ••
S t y 1 6 £ | £ •*' * r? ; | j
The Calera is for copyir.o text.
The Faste Jar is fer pasting fcack eut cr copied text.
The Alignaient Brush i= fer ehanging the t ex t format.
R7T The Style Brush is for j 1 ehanging type styles.
, j The Scissors are for deieting text.
The Fencil is for noving the text cursor.
00 i 3
Screetis from left to right: Keyboard Reference help screen; Project menu; help screen of One-Minute Tutorial s; help screen showing icon uses.
Software (such as a databasc manager or sjîieadsheet).
Textcraft from Arklronics bas been callcd an entry level word processor, but it does just about everything that you could want from an "advanced” word processor (plus a few things that most other word processors can’t do). Ifs main feature is its ease of use. Without reading the manual, there are enough on-scrccn help files so that anyone should be able to start writing in less than half an hour. It is straightforward and simple to use, but it has the flexibilitv neces- sary in any good word processor. It makes extensive use of the Amiga’s windowing ca- pabilities, and the commands are easy to re- member. Nevertheless, if you forget something, there is a help menu that will give you quick reminders, keyboard commands and 21 différent one-minutc tutori- als covcring just about ail aspects of using Textcraft.
Running through the tutorials will give you a working knowledge of Textcraft, but I wouldn’t throw away the manual until vou
have had a chance to really explore. There
are numerous options that people who are familiar with word processors will recog* ni e, and their inclusion will be appreci- ated. Where Textcraft goes beyond other word processors is in its writing templates.
The templates, or ready-made forms fea* ture, is an idea that made me think, “Why hasn’t any other software designer thought of this before?” You are given six hasic forms, each with variations that you select from: business lettcr, mémorandum, techni- cal report, business report, terni paper and résumé. (The résumé form alonc makes Textcraft worth the price.)
When starting a new document, you are asked which form you would like (induding blank). After supplying some information like names, addresses, etc., Textcraft arranges the information in the proper format. Business letters are organized cleanly and easily so that the content of the lettcr not the format is vour main concern. Technical reports, business reports and term papers give you blank forms for bibliographies (both book and article references). The résumé form lets you pick whether to empha- size work over éducation and whether you would like the résumé to bc chronological, functional or analytical in nature.
You can use the forms exactly as they are
or inodify them as you wish. Their main fu ne t io n is to give you a Framework when composing some of the more common kinds of documents. You may never need to
use any of the forms more than once or
twice, but ail of us could use some helpful reminders when writing.
E trasË' ®M ilTl i
iwily = 5 x t er
Textcraft .40 Bhere, Cregon
Current Phone Nunber: |123 5:5 £476
Current Phone Nunber:
Rémanent Address: |s3ie as above
' Rémanent Phone Nunber: [
; Style of Resune: ©Chronological O O
; Euphasize éducation over work expenence0: O- ©No
Rémanent Phone Nunber: Style of Resuhe: O
Enphasize éducation over work experience’; ©ïes
Help Fr o je c t La y ou t S ty1 es
T:tle of Report: : Subtitle:
: Section nunber:
Cere>icni51 Practices in the Outback
Screens clockivise from top left: Résumé template: saving a document from the Project menu; Business letter tem plate; Term Paper tem plate.
I Sender Récipient
1 Forn of Address: ©Hr O O O ®Hr O
655 wfst 23 stree*
Iê45 *3in Street
ne« york, ny
l'a te IsepTerber : 2 r£5j
Textcraft is not the ultimate word procès- sor, and it wasn’t designed to be. ït is a gcn- eral-purpose, easy-to-use word processor that will satisfy 90% of the people who buy it. It has tlie advantage of sirnplicity without the usual accompanying limitations.
Il can, of course, do the standard things that other word processors can: insertion, deletion, format changes, scareh and replace, biock moves, set margins, line spac* ing, right and left alignments, centering title and page mimhering, (50- or SO-column display, print, save. Load, etc. It also lias spécial features like international characters and accent marks, preset templates and type styles (bold, italic. Underline, super- and subscripts, or any combination of these). AU of these features are right at the click of a mouse button; or. If vou don't like
to take your hands off the keyboard, you can access them without the mouse.
Unless you are looking for a particular, more ad va need feature, Textcraft will not be a disappointment. It is a verv good program that will help turn your Amiga into the instrument for productivité and creativity that it was designed to be.
Help Key seeks to provide answer s to questions about the Amiga computer that new users or other inter- estcd computerists are most likely to ask. Rob Peck, Director of Descriptive and Graphie Arts at Commo- dore-Amiga, answered the questions in this installment. If you have questions about the Amiga that you don’t ftnd covered here or in other articles in AmigaWorld, send them in to AmigaWorld éditorial, 80 Fine St., Peterborough, NH 03458, and we’ll do mtr best to give you satisfactory answer s.
Q: Is every add-on peripheral going to be extemal, or will there be boards or modifications that require opening up the computer?
A: At the présent time, ail the periphcrals (and memory expansion) can be added without opening the box. The sales and marketing people will probablv discourage opening die box at ail. The expansion connector on the sidc of the unit brings oui almost every function that anyone could want. The complété bus of the 68000 processor is available there, as well as sev- eral special-purpose signais.
(f Wfuit is the différence between a custom chip and a coprocessor?
A: Generically, a custom chip is a set of circuitry that has been designed for a spécial purpose.
It could be anything from a memory circuit to a special-purpose logic circuit, or something that just makes a connection from one place to anotner, A coprocessor is something that opérâtes with its own complété set of commands at the same time that another processor is running in the same system.
The Amiga has a processor that does sharc the memory bus with
the 68000 and Controls the special-purpose chips.
Q: The 68000 chip is sometimes de* scribed as a 16 32-bit processor. Which is it? 16 or 32?
A: lt is a 32*bit processor, inean- ing that il handles data in 32-bit chunks; however, il is a 16-bit data bus, which means that the pathway to the memory is 16 bits wide. If the processor wishes lo handle a 32-bit-wide piece of data, it must do so in two separate instructions or data batches.
Q; Can you run bot h a 3%-inch and a 5'f-inch drive at the same time with the Amiga?
A: Yes. The drives can be daisy- chained off the back of the unit.
Q: Which 5 -inch drives will work with the Amiga?
A: The only 5 4-inch drive that will work with the Amiga ini- lially is the A 1020, made by Commodore-Amiga, It is a dou- ble-sided, double-density drive with a formatted capacily of 360K bytes, lt reads and writes disks in standard IBM PC format and features an Intégral power supply.
Q: Can the Amiga do batc.h frrocessing?
A: You can direct the machine to execute a text File in order to do batch processing. A facility built into the command line interface
(CLI) allows you to build a com- mand-instruction stream using the editor.
Q: Will the Commodore l 702 and 1902 monitors work un the Amiga? A: We are using 1902s on the machine at the moment, but Fin not sure how well the 1702 would work.
Q: What should a user look for in buying disks for the Amiga?
A: Just look for 3%-inch, double- sided microfloppy disks. Macintosh disks, as Macintosh standards are at the moment, will not function in the Amiga drive, because they are only certiFicd as single-sided. They must be double-sidcd for the Amiga there are no other spécifications. We have prefcrences, but do not have recommendations.
Q; How is information stored, as to tracks, sec tors, and so on, on the Amiga s 3feinch disks?
A: Il is stored at 11 sectors per track, each sector containing 512 bytes. The disks are double* sided, 80 tracks per sidc, so there are approximately 880,000 bytes available per disk.
Q: What does the phrase 4,open architecture" mean?
A: Opcn architecture refers to a system designed so that people will be able to develop other peripberals to attach to il. If a computer is designed with open architecture, it usually indicates that the manufacturer is inter- estcd in encouraging people to attach other products to it; a closed architecture means that the manufacturer is providing the add-ons that it feels every- bodv will want, making it diffi- cult for other people to design things that will work effeclively with the machine. Far from dis- couraging add-ons, Commodore- Amiga is actively encouraging them. Il there is a particular peripheral that people become very interested in. For example, they will probably buy the Amiga just to have that add-on.
Q: fs there a way you can network a number of Amigas together?
A: Since the Amiga includes a serial and parallel port, there will be ways of doing this. Télécommunications options for the Amiga will be introduced in
Q: Who wrote the operating system for the Amiga?
A: The fellow’s naine is Cari Sassenrath. He wrote the Executive, which is the low-level mul- titasking system. T he disk operating system, AmigaDOS, which makes use of the Executive, was written at Metacomco. (See our article on Metacomco, p.
70, in this issue. Eds.)
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Corning Next Issue
Graphics The next issue oï Amiga-
World will focus on graphies of al! Sorts. We will investigate the programs, techniques, tricks and questions regarding ail aspects of the Amiga as a graphies tool from using the Amiga in the office for business pres- sentations to investigating the rôle of the Amiga in creating new forms of artistic expression.
Adventure We’ll enter another
world where the next move is up to you wizards, spaccships, puzzles, endless rooms, paths, options, bafflements and strange créatures in and behind the art of interactive adventure gaming. How to play the games, who plays them, who designs them, what they are and where they might go.
? What is it? Is it only a language
for artificial intelligence? Is it another Basic alternative? Or, is it a tool for introspective exploration?
So don’t louch that dial. The World is just beginningl
Unique applications, tips
You may be using your Amiga at work, at home, or in the back seat ol your car. But somehow you'll be using it m a unique way. You will discover things that will let you do somethmg faster, easier or more elegantly.
AmigaWorld would hke to share those shortcuts. Ideas. Things to avoid. Things to try. Etc., with every- one, and we'll reward you with a colorful, appetiz- ing, official AmigaWorld T-shirt. (Just remember to tell us your size.)
Send it in. No matter how outrageous, clever, humorous or bizarre We will read anythmg. But we won't return it. So keep a copy for yourself, In cases of duplication, T-shirts are awarded on a first corne, first serve basis.
So. Put on your thinkmg berets and rush those suggestions to:
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A Do you own an Amiga computer.*
? 1, Ves 0 2. No
B. D > you intrnd lu purchase une?
? I Ves ? 2. No
C Wh.il microcniiipuirn do you curremly own?
D 4. IBM
This card vaîid uniil November 30, 1085.
? S. Maybe
? Ti Other (Please Spei ify). Q 7. Nonc
? I Comrnodotc
? 2 Radio Sli.it k
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? F>. Atari
I) What priinary application .ire you using your microcomputer forr
? I Word Prcxessnig C 5-Communication!
? 2 Home Applications ? 6 Dçvclop Applications
? S. Graphics ? 7 Devclop Programs
? 4 Music Cl H Dalaba.se Management
f ] Mrs. Name
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? 11. üatahases
? 12. Indtmn Profiles and News O 13 Other (Ple.isc S|>ccify)-
t». Product Reviews 7 Programming l-anguagcs
S. Programming Techniques
9. Music and Sound 10 Word Processing
? I. Graphies
? 2. Operating System ?
? 3. Business Applications G
? 4. Télécommunications IJ G .Y Kducatinn.il Applications
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F. Wliirh ol the following types of software do you plan to purchase for your Amiga
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? 4 33-49
D 5 Some Graduate School G 6. L'ost Graduait School
? 3 Attended Gollege
? 4. Graduated Collège
I What is cour annual houschold irtcome?
? 7. S5U-$ 74.999 G S. S75-Î99.999 D 9. Os er S 100.000
G 4 $ 25-$ 29.999 G 5 $ S0-$ 34,999 G 6 $ 33-549,999
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J What is your occupai ion? G 1 Kngincer Scientist
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A Do you own an Amiga Computer*
OI .Vm ? 2. No
B. Do you mlend to putchase one*
? |, Ves G 2 No C 3. Maybe
C. What microcomputers do you currcntly own?
Q f . Commodore G 4 IBM
? 2. Radio Shack G 5. Atari
? 3 Apple
D. What ptimarv application are you using Vont niictocoiTiputer for?
? I Word Processing C 5 Communications
? 2 Home Applications ? 6. De» clop Applications
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? 4 Music G S. Daiabase Management
This card valid until November 30,1985.
G 6, Other (Please Specify) G 7 None
? Mrs. Name-
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? L. Graphics ? 6. Product Reviews ? 11 Dalabasc»
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? 1. Télécommunications G 9. Music and Sound
G 5 K duc allouai Applications ? IÜ. Word Piocesimg
F. Which of ihc following tvpes of software do vou plan to purchase for voui Amiga?
Téléphoné ( )
C1RCLE NUMBERS FOR MORE INFORMATION
? 9 Entertainment
? 10. Other (Please Spcnfy).
? 5. Home Management D 6 Business
? 7. Stock Market Analvsis D 8. Tax Préparation
? 4 35-49
i 1. Education
? 2. Word Processing
? 5. Utilities
? I Daiabase
G. Wli.it is your âge*
? I f'nder 1H
? 2. 18-24
H What is your éducation level? 1 Grade Srhtcol G 2. High School
G 5. 50-64
? 6 Oser fia
G 5- Some Graduaie .School ? 6. Povi Graduais- SthoOl
. 3. Aliended Collège D 4- Graduated Collège
I What is vour annual houschold incomcr
? ! Les s than $ 15,000 G 4 $ 25-$ 29,999
O 2 $ I fs-$ 19,999 ? 5. $ 30-134.999
? 3. $ 2 i-$ 24.999 ? Fi t35-f49.999
? 7. $ 50-$ 74.999
? H. $ 73-$ 99.999
? 9.Gser $ 100.000
J Wlui is your occupation? D 1. Eisgiiierr Scientiu C 2. Middle Management D 3. Professional
? 7. Sludcnl n H Sales
? 9. Secrctarv
? 4 Top Management
? 5. Tethnician
? 6. Retired
K b this «our copy of AmigaWorld-
C I Ves ? 2. No
I, Il you air n*>t a subscriber, please nule 499
M î( sou would like a one year subscription to AmigaWotld (Sis Issues), please circle 500 on the Reader Service Card Each suhscrtplion coals $ 14.97-
(Canada Mexico $ 17 97, Forcign Surface $ 34 97. One year only) Please allnw 10-12 weeks (m delorrv
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ATTN: Reader Service Dept. RO. Box 363 Dalton, MA 01227
Cifcle 8 on Reader Service card
graphies software they came to Island Graphics
product demos they came to Island Graphics sam. For ail your computtr graphies
Corp. When Commodore needtd Amiga in-store
Creative. And for launch pizzazz they did the
, needs call Island, Creative.
Image Itand drawn usine) Island’s Cmpart
.Software and durci digital sffwra fions.
Taste tbe jlavors of tbe Island. Write or call: Island Graphics, One Harbor Drive, Sausalito, California 94965 (415) 332-5400
TODAY1F YOU COME IN SECOND, YOL 'Vb LOST THE RACE.
It may have been good enough in a Soapbox Derby,® but ttiese days there is no second place.
Fortunately there's a new way to get a jump on your compétition, Intro- ducing Amiga.’" The first personal computer That gives you a Creative edge.
Amiga mak.es charts and graphs with more colorand dimension than any other personal computer (and faster than most of them). But thars just a start. You can préparé présentations with stereo music and animation, siide shows, create package designs, instruction manuais, brochures.
Amiga can not only do many more tasks, it can do more of them at once. And work on ail of them stmuiraneously. While you're preparing ihe spread- sheet, Amiga wili print the mémo,
And there's probably enough power ieft over to receive a phone message or a stock quote over a modem at the same time.
You won't find a computer thahs eas- ier to use, either. You point at symbols with the mouse or use keyboard commands if you prefer, OnSy Amiga is built togiveyou a choice.
Amiga has twîce the memory of an IBM® PC. But although it can run rings around IBM. It will also run IBM programs. You have instant access to the iargesî collection of business software in the industry including oïd standbys iike Wordstar' and Lotus'- 1,2,3. Amiga is more powerful than Macintosh,™ too, and more expandable. With an op- tional expansion module you can add memory up to 8 megabytes. And while it can do much more than Macintosh or IBM, Amiga costs less than either of them.
See an Authorized Amiga Dealer near you. Now that Amiga is here, the question isn't whetheryou can afford a computer, ifs wheîher you can affoid to wait.
Amiga by Commodore