Early purchasers of the 520ST should now have a
disk based version of BASIC. The disk and manuals were sent out to
distributors in mid-November and may be collected from your dealer
free of charge. The disk includes STWRITER as an alternative (though
not a substitute) for GemWrite.
Atari say that Digital Research has promised
GemWrite and GemPaint 'during November' but it will still be
necessary for Atari to complete the manuals for these products.
Atari cannot act until the finished products are received but some
progress should be evident by the time you read this.
The final decision on the form in which BOS will
be available has not yet been taken but it is likely that Atari will
issue a voucher which interested users can take to their local BOS
dealer for a free copy of BOS. It should be stressed that BOS on its
own is worthless so it is only worth obtaining a copy if you intend
to purchase BOS based applications.
TOS ON ROM
Although there have been delays, GEM/TOS should
now be available on ROM. The upgrade is available from your dealer/
distributor by returning the keyboard unit which will be upgraded
for a 'nominal' fee of £25. Silica Shop will however provide the
upgrade free of charge to customers who purchased STs from them.
Atari claim that the recent settlement between Apple and DR will not
affect TOS/GEM and do not plan to make alterations at the present
time. Any future alterations which may become necessary will be
cosmetic only and will not affect the performance of any previously
Rumours in the States that Atari do not provide a
warranty are certainly not true in the U.K. Les Player of Atari
explained that Atari have passed the warranty to the distributors
who were carefully chosen on their ability to effect the necessary
repairs or service. In some cases your dealer will provide the
warranty but either way the ST comes with a full 1 year warranty.
Any problems will be sorted out by your dealer or distributor.
Beware! Early versions of GEM/TOS have a bug which
prevents folders that have an eight letter file name from being
opened. Once a file is in, there is no way out! The initial solution
is to ensure that you use short file names for folders but if you
have got yourself in this predicament the only answer is to use a
disk editor to change the filename on disk. Hippo Disk Utilities is
available now for this job.
"End of this year or beginning of next
year". Apparently there are problems with the modulator.
SOFTWARE AVAILABLE NOW ... All of the Infocom
adventures, Hippo C, Hippo Disk Utilities, Hippo Spell, Hippo
Simple, K-Seka, K-Ram, Hex, PC Intercomm, Mark of the Unicorn Word
Processor, Express Letter Writer, Ultima 2.'Now' is the beginning of
November so six weeks have passed, check your dealer.
As well as STWRITER, which owners should have,
Atari are offering a superb painting program called NeoChrome.
Drawing with a mouse is so easy and NeoChrome, even though it was
never intended as a commercial program, is far superior to any paint
program on the 8-bit machines. You can get a copy from your dealer
for the price of a disk. You will need a colour monitor.
Atari's colour monitor has still not been released
but in the meantime there are cheaper alternatives. The Phillips
Video-RGB Monitor CM 8533 retails at around £299 (cable extra) and
can double as a monitor for the 130XE or 800/XL. Quality is superb.
The ST really comes alive in colour!
Wootton Computers in Crewe can supply this monitor and a cable for
the ST. Phone 0270 214118 for price and details.
Several of the software packages demonstrated at
PCW have been taken up by ANTIC magazine for U.S. distribution thus
ensuring smaller U.K. developers an outlet in the States.
Silica Shop have over 170 'announced' software
package in their latest ST price list from 61 different companies,
most of them British. In addition they list another 34 companies who
will be developing software but who are not yet prepared to announce
titles. If you can't find the software you want in 1986 you are not
One American company that has really taken the ST
to heart is Hippopotamus Software who were among the very first to
complete software packages. Many of these were originally written
for the Macintosh but have been converted to the ST in super quick
time. An amazing variety of finished (and available) products
include an Almanac with over 35,000 entries, jokes and Quotes,
Ramdisk and Disk Utilities. In the pipeline are an Eprom Burner, a
half megabyte upgrade, a spelling checker, and HippoArt which is a
collection of hi-res pictures for use with Atari's NeoChrome and
Backgammon. Several of these products will be available from
THE PRESS RELEASES
TDI SOFTWARE LTD .... announce TDI
MODULA-2/ ST which allows programmers to write GEM applications for
the 520ST in a true 32-bit language. Modula-2 is an advanced
language that users of Pascal will learn in a few days. Several
business packages and database are planned under the Modula-2
system. Details from TDI 0272 742 796
TDI SOFTWARE LTD ... UCSD Pascal/P-SYSTEM
operating system for the 520ST. A wide range of single and
multi-user P-SYSTEM software has already been developed with over
140 packages for business, accounting, CAD and vertical markets.
Much of this software will rapidly become available for the ST. UCSD
Pascal is available immediately. Details from TDI at 0272 742796.
GST COMPUTER SYSTEMS ... GSTC - a C
compiler with full GEM window support, standard libraries, simple
assembler, editor and linker at £60, GST ASM a full 68000 macro
assembler complete with editor at £40 and GST EDIT, a multi window
GEM screen editor at £25. Details from Electric Software Ltd. Tel.
PRESS ... HABA SYSTEMS INC. of California have announced the
formation of HABA SYSTEMS LTD. to handle European distribution of
all HABA products. Initial products are HABA Writer, HABA Hippo C
and a Hard Disk Drive. Your local dealer will be able to stock these
products. HABA Systems Ltd can be contacted at 34, Greenlands Lane,
Prestwood, Great Missenden, Bucks. Tel. 02406 6045