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Brad Webb per eMail

AMIGA Update Newsletter von Brad Webb
From: Brad Webb
Date: Mon, 25 Dec 2000 17:35:13 -0500
Subject: [AUsubscribers] Newsletter
         _________ ____      _|__ __ __|_______      _________
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      // \\\\  /. \\\\__ \/ __//    \\  \\____.  /// \\\\  /. \\
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       ¯    \/    ¯ ¯    \/.  |¯      ¯|z!o     ¯  ¯    \/    ¯
               A M I G A      | 001225 |      U P D A T E
        AMIGA and the Amiga logo are trademarks of Amiga, Inc.      

         C H R I S T M A S   E X E C U T I V E   U P D A T E

          N O V E M B E R   E X E C U T I V E   U P D A T E 

             A M I G A   M A L L   O P E N   T O   A L L 

         T R O G L A D I T E   S O F T W A R E   A W A R D S 

           A M I G A 2 0 0 1   W E B   P A G E   I S   U P 

     A M I G A   E X T R A V A G A N Z A   2 0 0 1   I S   O F F

        E L B O X   H A S   I B M   A U T H O R I Z A T I O N 

           C O N T I N U I N G   E P I C / A P C   F E U D 

     J A V A   E N G I N E   P R O J E C T   W A N T S   H E L P 

           P R O F E S S I O N A L   T R E E   D E S I G N 

             S C E N E T   O P E N S   N E W   A R E A S 

   P E G A S O S   S P E C I F I C A T I O N   F R O M   B P L A N 

         R E A L S O F T   3 D   A G R E E M E N T   M A D E 

           A M I G A   A M P   V 2 . 8   A V A I L A B L E

              E A R T H   2 1 4 0   F R O M   P A G A N

          P I C A S S O 9 6   T E A M   S P E A K S   O U T 
Editor's Thoughts and Introduction:

 With this issue, we come to the end of another Amiga year. We have
Bill McEwen's Christmas Update below, in which he discusses the past
year and all it has meant for Amiga. From where we sit, the truly
important milestone represented by the year 2000 is the real
transition from the Classic Amiga to the New Amiga as the vehicle for
Amiga's future. There's a lot more to be done, but there's no turning
back now.
 We also bring you the November Executive Update, which managed to
just elude our last issue. We've discussed paraphrasing these updates
in the past, but right now there's enough room in "Amiga Update" to
carry them, so we'll continue to do so if we can.

 This last month saw a large number of Amigans go into a panic over
the troubles of 3dfx Interactive, Inc., the force behind VooDoo.
There's a great deal of worry about being able to use the new VooDoo
based graphics boards on the Amiga. Voices of reason are now
appearing, pointing out that these boards will still work, and be
supported by the manufacturers. We'd like to add our voice to those
saying "calm down!".
 We'd also like to wish "Happy Holidays" to all those who for whom
this is the holiday season. Christmas, Ramadan, Hanuka and others - we
hope all celebrations are or have been wonderful, and that together
we'll soon have both a happy new year and century.
 Brad Webb,
E-mail to the E-ditor:


In one of your earlier updates, a user asked for help regarding his
A2000 w/GVP 060 board (quoted below). I run an unofficial support site
for the GVP 2060 and 4060, and this may be of help to him:

I'm contacting you in this regard as I couldn't find an e-mail address
for the user, Brad.

*** start quoted post ***
E-mail to the E-ditor:

23 Oct 2000 

Hi Brad

 I was wondering if you have heard this one?? I have a 2000 with a GVP
060 with built in scsi. When I connect my syjet it hangs up something
fierce amd only by either shutting down the syjet or disconnecting the
cable will it release the buss. Also I can no longer do a warm reboot.
I have disabled all the wbstartup softeware in an attempy to fix this.
but to no avail. Any thoughts anyone?? Keep up the good work! Yours in

*** end quoted post ***


Gregory Donner
 Thanks for your answer. I'm sure this will help immensely.

17 Dec 2000 


 I really enjoy your newsletters and I thought that others may have
the same questions concerning YAM:
 1)When looking at a Yam message, some messages appears to be
"html"code scattered on the page. makes it hard to find the message,
Anyone know to set up yam so that I do not see that on the page
 2)While in YAM, some messages have quite a few http:// addresses
color coded on the page. Anyway to click on them and automatically go
to that address?
 3)Is there a mailing list for Yam and Ibrowse users?

Keep up the good work!


 The instructions that come with YAM will tell you how to deal with
files that actually end with a .html extension. I suspect your real
problem though is files that end in the typical .msg extension but
contain lines of html code. This is really the fault of improperly
used mailers on the sending end. I know of no easy way to deal with
such a situation. It's a big problem for many mailing list operators.

 As for clicking on a URL in a message and having your browser take
you there, that's not difficult to set up. Tools such as the Open URL
library and HURL (AmiNET) are available to accomplish this. Use YAM's
configuration menu and the Help key and YAM will guide you through the

 There's a YAM mailings list,, available at the
E-Groups site. Send e-mail to to
subscribe. Once subscribed, you can access their archives on the
E-Groups webpage ( You should find
additional answers to your questions there.

 Also, take a look at the next letter.

3 Dec 2000 

G'day Brad Webb,

 On 24-Nov-00, on the subject of "[AUsubscribers] Newsletter", you
spoke thus:

> abandon them. Since we have no control over these ads, and 
> don't even see them until after the issue is sent, it could 
> easily happen again. We hope it won't.

 Brad, there is a solution for YAM users. Take a look at my YAM script
in Aminet:comm/mail/eGroupsScan1_0.lha. This script will automatically
strip all eGroups ads from any of their MLs you are subscribed to. Try

 I'm betting that's very good news to a lot of YAM users. Thanks much
for sending the information along.

1 Dec 2000 

Hi there!

 I am reading Amiga Update for a few years now and I am always happy
when I find a new issue in my mailbox. Although I can get most of
these news earlier via internet and newsgroups, I prefer AU, because I
do not have to search for news, I get them "delivered" and these news
are at least collected by someone who knows what is really
interesting. Emails to and words from the editor are always quite
interesting and sometimes contain as much information as the news. For
me Amiga Update is a real "email-magazin" which I do not want to miss!

 You do a great job and I hope for Your readership that You will do it
for a long while in the future!

Thanks and Bye
 Thanks for the words of encouragement. It's nice to know that we're
fullfiling the mission we set for ourselves, to get the news out
rather than put it up on a web site somewhere and wait for people to
come to us. 
 Current plans are to keep right on publishing.

         C H R I S T M A S   E X E C U T I V E   U P D A T E

December 23, 2000

Executive Update - Looking Back

Merry Christmas, and Happy New Year to one and all:

 Wow, have we been a blessed company. On December 27, 1999 we executed
our agreement with Gateway, and January 3rd 2000 was our first day of
 In one year we have been able to release an upgrade to the AmigaOS
(3.9, with our partners Haage and Partner), we have announced and
released two versions of the SDK for the New AmigaDE (Digital
Environment), we have released the AmigaOne specification and
announced two partners in building these new machines, (bPlan, and
 Yes this has been an amazing year.
 As we look back upon these last 12 months, there have been many
lessons learned, and it is with these new lessons that we will be
moving into 2001, with clear focus, and numerous new announcements and
deals. Yes, the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas will be great
fun for Amigans around the world, for it is here that the rest of the
world will begin to learn what you already know! :-)
 At this time of remembrance and thanks, we are also reminded of our
friends that we have lost. Coz, Bob Cosby is very missed and we think
of him, and pray daily for his wife Marsha. It has been the most
sobering event for Amiga, and it helped us to remember that Family is
what makes Amiga great. We are looking to add many new members to the
Amiga family this year.
 This year has been hard for us in other ways also: the stock market
has certainly hindered our ability to raise the capital we wanted to
accelerate our plans, and many of us have had to endure financial
hardships making the dream of Amiga a reality. The Amiga team is
together, and moving ahead quickly towards this new and exciting year.
 I want to thank each and every one of you for your continued support
and for everyone hanging in there with us.
 We are truly a blessed company.
 I want to personally wish everyone a very Merry Christmas, and a very
Happy New Year.

God Bless,

><> Bill McEwen ><> President CEO Amiga, Inc,

         N O V E M B E R   E X E C U T I V E   U P D A T E 

Dear Amiga Family:

 It is now November 2000, eleven months after we took over the helm of
Amiga. We have made some changes to the original plan, and continue to
do our best in carrying the vision forward.
 In the next two weeks, the next new product from Amiga will begin
shipping - Amiga OS 3.9! This build has been designed specifically for
one group - You, the Amiga family. We have been working very closely
with Haage and Partner in creating a great new product offering for
Amiga that you will all be very proud of.
 Will there be a 4.0? This really depends on the sales of OS 3.9. You
see, we did not have any plans for another version of the Classic OS.
But we continued to receive requests, and because we listen to
community, we decided to move ahead with Haage and Partner on this
project. If OS 3.9 sells well, and we see a continuing need to produce
for the existing Classic Amiga platform, then there is a strong
possibility of a 4.0.
 It is in your hands.
 No matter what happens, AmigaDE is still moving ahead quickly and we
look forward to delivering another version of the Amiga Software
Development Kit (SDK) with new features and enhancements. In the
coming weeks, we will be adding 3D and sound to AmigaDE.
 There are many more exciting things happening at Amiga and I look
forward to sharing with you all of the great details, and
announcements in Koln, Germany in December. I look forward to meeting
all of you there, at the Amiga World tradeshow. Bring a friend!
 Looking forward to a great visit in Koln, and a wonderful holiday

Bill McEwen and the rest of the Amiga team.

             A M I G A   M A L L   O P E N   T O   A L L 

December 23, 2000

Amiga Mall Now Open

 The Amiga community is now able to purchase the same goodies that we
here at Amiga wear!
 The new Amiga Mall is now open and ready for business.
 All items are created specifically for you, and will make you the
envy of all of your friends. Ok maybe not all of your friends, but at
least the ones who matter.
 For a limited time, anyone who purchases one of the Apparel items,
will receive a free bumper sticker with their order.
 All of the merchandise shown on the site is available through your
local Amiga dealer, or you can purchase them directly from Amiga, and
they will be shipped directly to you.
 More items will be added on a regular basis so keep coming back, to
see what else has been added.
 Have a Merry Christmas, and look forward to an amazing new year,
Vince Pfeifer / Vice President - Amiga Operations

 P.S. From your new webmaster and AmigaMall developer, Ray
A. Akey: If you experience any problems with the Amiga Mall, please
contact me at

        T R O G L A D I T E   S O F T W A R E   A W A R D S 

4 Dec., 2000 

 Trogladite Software are proud to announce the opening of the 2001
Trogladite Software awards. This annual event which has been going for
three years now will run from now until mid-February 2001 where the
winners will be made known at the alt.WOA show in Huddersfield.
 You can nominate and vote in the awards at
 Please note that due to cheating which went on last year, we have
added very strict voting procedures which should help prevent cheating
this year.


Neil Bullock,
Trogladite Software

          A M I G A 2 0 0 1   W E B   P A G E   I S   U P 

12 Dec 2000 

Holiday Greetings to all our Amiga Friends,

 The Amiga2001 web page is up! Be sure to check it out at:
 We already have several exhibitors listed in this first listing of
our web pages. More will be added each week. Be sure to keep posted on
this the biggest Amiga show in the Americas.
 St. Louis is centrally located in the heart of the U.S., and is
served by several airlines, including TWA, which has a hub here. Check
the web page for the phone number of our official travel agency, Best
Way Travel. They can help you get your travel arrangements made to
attend the show.
 Amiga2001 - an Amiga Odyssey, will be hosted at the Sheraton West
Port Hotel, located in St. Louis, MO. The hotel is physically located
in the city of Maryland Heights at:

Sheraton West Port Hotel
900 West Port Plaza
St. Louis, MO 63146

 For reservations contact them at 314-878-1500 and ask for the
reservation desk. Reservations is open from 8 AM until 10:30 PM CST.
Be certain to tell them that you are attending the Amiga2001 show, so
that you get the special rates. Stay at the Sheraton West Port, get
special rates, and help the show. The Sheraton has 17 Restaurants, 6
Bistros, a Comedy Night Club, a two screen Cinema, the West Port
Playhouse, and several snack shops, magazine shop and speciality shops
all available and within a one to five minute walk. Convenient
undercover parking for guest as well.
 While your viewing the web page, be certain to send in your money for
tickets to attend and tickets for the Amiga2001 Banquet to be held
Saturday evening. The show is Friday, March 30 thru Sunday April 1st,
2001. Friday is the Developers Conference with classes and the vendor
setup Friday evening. Saturday and Sunday are the exhibit floor
displays with lots of exhibitors showing off their latest Amiga
products and offering good prices to boot. Classes are also available
on Saturday and Sunday for those not quite up to the more challenging
ones on Friday.
 Check out the Amiga2001 web pages and come enjoy the show and say
happy retirement to Petro Tyschtschenko, who will retire while at the
show on Saturday, March 31.

Happy Holidays,

Bob and Diana Scharp

Owners of Amigan-St. Louis
The folks that put on the
Gateway Computer Shows, including

    A M I G A   E X T R A V A G A N Z A   2 0 0 1   I S   O F F

15 Dec., 2000

 The following announcement was noted on the Amiga Extravaganzq
website. "We here at ARCUG have decided to postpone the Jan 6th show
till later in the year 2001. This is due to lack of interest, though
we do thank all those who made a commitment to come. We also look
forward to your support in the near future. So the AE 2001 Jan Show is
officially CANCELLED till we can get a new date set. Please pass it on
if you so desire. All moneys received will be refunded, so please
don't worry. Please contact the hotel if need: Holiday Inn Southeast
5120 Victory Drive Indianapolis, IN 46203 To cancel any reservations
please Call (317) 783-7751 I would like to take the time and
personally thank all those who helped us organize and advertise the
show and for just trying to make this a success."

J R Wilson, ARCUG

      E L B O X   H A S   I B M   A U T H O R I Z A T I O N 

23 November 2000

 We are proud to announce that ELBOX COMPUTER was authorised by IBM
Corporation, New York, USA, to use the PowerPC Logo Trademark for the
newest Elbox product for Amiga computers:
 SharkPPC G3/G4 PowerPC card for MEDIATOR PCI 1200/3000/4000.
 International Business Machines (IBM) Corporation is the sole owner
of the PowerPC logo trademark world-wide.
 The products marked with the PowerPC logo must meet the applicable
PowerPC criteria established by IBM.
 The PowerPC logo designating the product means it is of the highest
quality and professional integrity and guarantees that it meets or
exceeds the applicable industry standards.
 Quality standards imposed by IBM include inspection of finished
products marked with the PowerPC logo, production processes and
manufacturing facilities to ensure the highest standards are
coherently maintained.
 Here are the specifications of the SharkPPC cards marked with the
IBM-licensed PowerPC logo:

SharkPPC G3/G4 750@550MHz
   * PowerPC750@550MHz
   * 256KB@550MHz L2 Cache
   * 22.4 SPECint95
   * 13.3 SPECfp95
   * 1276 DMIPS
   * PCI interface 66 MHz
   * Two sockets for up to 1 GB SDRAM memory

SharkPPC G3/G4 750@400MHz
   * PowerPC750@400MHz
   * 256KB@400MHz L2 Cache
   * 17.4 SPECint95
   * 11.7 SPECfp95
   * 928 DMIPS
   * PCI interface 66 MHz
   * Two sockets for up to 1 GB SDRAM memory

 The PowerPC name and the PowerPC logotype are trademarks of
International Business Machines Corporation, used under license

          C O N T I N U I N G   E P I C / A P C   F E U D 

 {The following dueling postings from the company formerly called EPIC
(UK) and the APC were recently posted to the net. Brad}

18 Dec., 2000

(Former) Epic pirating?

 "Epic, now and sell software from
APC&TCP, but APC&TCP don't become the money from Epic. Don't buy our
software from APC&TCP at this shop, please.

 Today we change the price from our CD-ROM "Best of Airsoft Software"
to DM 9.95.
 Some dealers in england make pirate copies from our software. from
the Airsoft CD-ROM, too :( All our cd-roms (only scene archives 9)
habe a prof. printet covercard and inlaycard and a silver-cd without
(!!!) selfprintet label. Our game 'Flyin High' and 'Pinball Brain
Damage' are only in a pressed cd-rom. CD-Rom with selfprintet label
are pirate soft. Some other companys (e.g. Epic Marketing uk) sell our
software, but dont pay the money to us :( We DON'T use every time
selfprintet labels!" More infos on

Andreas Magerl, APC&TCP

{And the former Epic, now AmigaGames (UK) has this to say ...

20 Dec., 2000

 "We have made the desision to cease to promote titles from APC&TCP...

As strange as it may seem this odd company do not wish for us to
promote there (sic) titles... Not a problem really as their latest
game, SEASIDE was only rated around 20%."

    J A V A   E N G I N E   P R O J E C T   W A N T S   H E L P 

16 Dec., 2000   
 Project Information:

 Developers: We are currently looking for developers who are
interested in helping with the AJE project. Developers must be willing
to share sources with other developers to continue the AJE momentum,
and must sign a Confidentiality / Non-Disclosure agreement with
 1st Phase Beta Testers: After a developed VJM is available, we will
begin private Beta testing with people experienced in coding JAVA
applets and applications. Private Beta testers will be required to
sign Confidentiality / Non-Disclosure agreements with Merlancia
 Public/2nd phase Beta Testers: Merlancia Industries is currently
looking into Public Beta Releases. If such releases are made
available, anyone who is interested can become a Public Beta tester.
PBTs will be required to register and may not re-distribute the binary
code provided to them, nor can they de-compile it into source.
 Developers and 1st Phase Beta Testers are eligible to receive final
AJE product when it is made available at no charge as a consideration
to their efforts. Public/2nd Phase Testers do not qualify for this

          P R O F E S S I O N A L   T R E E   D E S I G N 

20 Dec 2000 

 TREE PROFESSIONAL 5 from HISOFT is a parametric modeller. With expert
knowledge about the anatomy and principles of tree growth built into
its algorithms, TREE is capable of creating and modelling an infinite
number of various trees and tree species, palms and bushes. With TREE,
you will never have to worry again about the lack of vegetation in
your scenes.

            S C E N E T   O P E N S   N E W   A R E A S 

Cologne/Germany, 08-Dec-2000.

 Scenet has been founded in 1998 as the first web-portal for the legal
computer demoscene, based on a project back in 1994. It offers a huge
collection of web-links, emails and icq-numbers of former and active
members of the demoscene on all platforms, just like Amiga, PC and C64
as well as Atari, Acorn, Mac, CPC and ZX. Since the end of 1999 Scenet
has been enlarged by a big articles- and interviews-section. Since
December 6th, 2000, Scenet contains an internal and interactive
script-system with news items updated every day.

   P E G A S O S   S P E C I F I C A T I O N   F R O M   B P L A N 

8 Dec., 2000

 Dual G3/G4 microATX Mainboard - Codename PEGASOS
 With it's PEGASOS development pblan GmbH of germany brings the
unleashed PowerPC performance to the users.
 By useing a modular system design, the mainboard could be easily user
upgraded to the actual demands. With todays standard interfaces
allready designed onto the PEGASOS mainboard, the users will be able
to easily connect standard components (like harddrives or CD Roms) and
a wide range of highend devices such as digital video cameras to the
 While PEGASOS itself is widely scaleable to the users needs, it's a
easy task for retailers or OEMs to configure the system for there
demands. By hiting the best price/performance point for the choiced
configuration, systems starting with one CPU (at entrylevel) up to
multi PPC G4 based cluster computers could be build useing the same

PEGASOS Specification:

microATX Mainboard

 133 MHz Processor Slot
 Optional with 350 MHz G3 PowerPC / 512k Cache
 up to Dual G4 PowerPC / 2 MB Cache at state of the art speedgrades
 PC133 SDRAM Memory for a total of 2 modules
 AGP Slot
 Optional with Matrox G450 Dualhead or user selectable grafikcard
 PCI Subsystem
 with a total of 3 slots to be used for custom expansion
 at 100/200/400 MBit Transferrates
 10/100 MBit Network
 USB I/O System
 with a total of 4 connectors
 AC97 Sound Subsystem
 with Mic. In, Line In/Out
 and Headset support
 Optional Soundblaster Live! (uses one PCI Slot)
 for comunication with PDAs and other IRDA devices
 with up to 4 devices
 for PS2 kompatible keyboards
 for PS2 compatible pointing devices
 two channel RS232
 standard Centronics
 to be used with PC style joysticks/gamepads

       R E A L S O F T   3 D   A G R E E M E N T   M A D E 

Cologne, December 9, 2000.

 Realsoft and Hyperion Entertainment have entered into an agreement to
bring Realsoft's critically acclaimed and highly advanced 3D modelling
and rendering package to the Amiga.
 'Realsoft 3D' is a full featured modelling, rendering, animation and
simulation software tool. Its predecessor, Real 3D, originated on the
Amiga all these years ago and was renowned for its powerful and
innovative tools. Now the new, rewritten 'Realsoft 3D' provides even
more power and introduces dozens of exciting innovations, all
accessible through a very carefully designed, intelligent, and
user-friendly interface. This new interface adapts to the skills of
the user and helps him/her to master advanced 3D techniques with
surprising ease. Realsoft 3D is designed to meet the requirements of
today's 3D artist who requires extreme performance through an easy to
use, productive user interface.
 Commenting on the agreement, Realsoft's managing director Vesa
Meskanen remarked: "The success of our 3D product line started on the
Amiga platform. This opportunity to port our latest product generation
back to Amiga is therefore very welcome. The platform independent
design of Realsoft 3D together with Hyperion Entertainment's knowledge
about the latest developments of Amiga OS entails that after the
initial porting work is done, all our new software releases will
include the Amiga platform without further porting delays."
 "We were extremely impressed by the feature-set of Realsoft 3D. This
package truly represents unbelievable value for money", said Ben
Hermans, managing partner of Hyperion Entertainment. "Through our
activities in the field of entertainment software, we have acquired
enormous expertise in the field of 3D graphics. We were looking for a
way to leverage this expertise and apply it to other areas. Given
Realsoft's Amiga background, it seemed natural to approach them. We
are very excited that we can play a role in bringing back Real 3D's
successor to the Amiga."
 Realsoft 3D will be available for Amiga OS 3.x and Amiga DE in the
course of 2001. Requirements and further details to be announced.

           A M I G A   A M P   V 2 . 8   A V A I L A B L E

23 December, 2000

 AmigaAMP v2.8 final release available!

 Merry Christmas everyone! Just before Christmas Holidays I've managed
to compile the final release of AmigaAMP v2.8. Shoutcast Streaming
works much better now and I've fixed a few more bugs.

Plugin Development Kit v1.4 released

 Along with AmigaAMP v2.8 there's a new Plugin Development Kit which
shows how to keep an eye on AmigaAMP's current window position. Plugin
authors can use it to 'dock' their graphics to the AmigaAMP main
window for example.

               E A R T H   2 1 4 0   F R O M   P A G A N

23rd December 2000 - Earth 2140!

 Earth 2140, ported to the Amiga by Pagan from the original PC game
created by Topware, is now completed. Copies can be ordered from Epic
 A new updated demo has been released to coincide with the launch of
E2140. The update (available as a single download), fixes reported
issues with some graphic boards/hardware set-ups and lots of speed


          P I C A S S O 9 6   T E A M   S P E A K S   O U T 

21 Nov 2000 

{The following note was sent recently to Picasso96 users. In view of
the importance of Picasso96 the Amiga community, and the continuing
disagreement between Picasso96 and Elbox, we are printing the entire
mailing here. Brad}

Dear (registered?) Picasso96 users!
 First, I have to apologize for the lack of development during the
last year, but Alex and I have been too busy in our real life to
continue to spend a lot of time in the development of a not-so-
profitable project.
 Another pressing problem was that our hardware gets older and older,
less reliable each year. Alex' Amiga broke down completely and it took
us weeks to conclude that something in there is not reliable anymore,
but we could not determine what.
 So now we have an instable main development system that does not even
compile properly. Fine. Just some weeks ago we surrendered and I gave
Alex my second Amiga, which was used for testing, to replace his
motherboard. As it turns out, this one works better but still not
perfectly. Something else is to blame. The hard disk? Or the
CyberStorm board? One of the many graphics boards? We don't know yet
but one way or the other we will probably have to replace the system
 This will cost some money.
 On the other hand, if we look at the registration turnout, especially
over the last two years, we have to face the fact that only a handful
of people deemed Picasso96 worth enough to send a small amount of
money. So who has registered at all? Mostly PicassoII users, some
CyberVision64/Merlin/Piccolo users and as far as I can remember not a
single one for UAE. Sad but true, people use non-crippled Shareware
without bothering to register.
 Even if you ignore this, all those registrations combined would not
even allow us to drink a beer once a week. That's not enough to
justify intensive work on Picasso96 while at the same time we could
spend our precious spare time with friends and family. We do want to
have a life outside of work, too.
 BTW, we have learned the hard way that Dave Haynies quote "make one
error and you have to support it a lifetime" (probably not correctly
quoted, sorry, but I don't have it at hand) is just too true...
 If you say that we have made a lot of money with the PicassoIV, I
have to tell you that if you calculate what we would have made working
full time for a company, we would have made about five times as much.
Both Alex and I have spent two years of full time productive time each
on Picasso96 between the summer of '96 and mid '98.
 So now estimate the value of work behind Picasso96 yourself...
 Alexander Niven-Jenkins wrote "A number of companies were decent
enough to cough up the money...". Set the number to "1". The only one
to pay to this day was Village Tronic for the PicassoIV. Ateo did not
pay one single French Franc. Ok, they did supply _parts_ of the
reference system which to this day does not have actual release
boards, just prototypes which we still suspect to have certain bus
timing flaws and behave just a bit differently than the actual release
versions. But we don't want to be too hard on the Ateo guys. They have
invested a lot of money into their project and probably did not even
hit the point of breaking even.
 Some people have written that we should make Picasso96 open source
now that we can not work as hard as before. That's actually a good
point, but given the situation, no one would ever even bother to pay
us any fees to use it commercially. They would simply say "the source
is public, anyone can use it". And now try to sue someone with this
attitude... It is way too costly and the chances at court are very
different in different parts of the world.
 But we still think that we deserve a fee when someone wants to
exploit Picasso96 commercially. Elbox does. So we think they should
pay a fee to get support for their product.
 Some say that the Elbox board isn't just about graphics, that there
is ethernet and all other possibilities. Yes, there are other options
to use with the Elbox board. BUT! What percentage of buyers will go
for ethernet or whatsoever and not for graphics?
 I have ethernet on my Amigas, too, ok. I use it to connect them to
each other and to my PC to exchange data. How often do I use it? About
1-5% of the time at the most. Could I live without ethernet? Sure.
 Make the same calculations about other possible expansions, it will
probably be similar.
Now, how often do I use a graphics board when working on the
Amiga? 100% of the time.
 I think it is not too far fetched to assume that 90% of the Elbox
buyers have similar priorities and intend to use the system in this
 Ok, there is CyberGraphX for the Elbox, too. It only supports the old
Virge that nobody wants to buy these days. If you can choose between
the Virge and the Voodoo3, what would you choose? Exactly. So this is
no real argument either.
 And as user registration does not work at all, the only chance for us
to get our fee is that Picasso696 is being bundled with hardware.
 So taking all this into account, the logical conclusion would be to
give Elbox a decent discount on Picasso96 and have them distribute it
with their system.
 Stephen Fellner asked whether Elbox contacted us. Yes, they did. They
wanted the card driver development kit which is not public and
contains informations about our private hardware API that is needed to
build a driver. After all, this private API is our intellectual
property and must not be used by someone who has not got our o.k. for
using it. We told them that we requested a fee which from our point of
view was moderately and appropriate. After reading about this, they
(Elbox) simply stopped communication with us and secretely developed a
driver they either based on reengineering efforts or a pirated copy of
the development kit they got from someone else who may have thought he
did something good by giving them the chance to build a driver without
our help.
 So, summing it up, Elbox delibrately chose to screw us.

Now, from your point of view, should we:
a) support the Elbox driver actively,
b) ignore it and let Elbox change it accordingly to changes in
   Picasso96 or
c) make sure that this pirated driver will not work with future
   versions of Picasso96?
 Well, we are quite pissed off, so we are currently favoring the third
option. So, probably, future versions of Picasso might not work on the
Elbox system at all (although honestly I have no doubt that Elbox
would not be able to hack our countermeasures and - if they intend to
- distribute pirated versions of Picasso96 soon after we release new
ones). But this is not set in stone yet, as we still hope for Elbox to
offer at least a symbolic one-time fee.
 We are willing to give them some time to reach us and offer something
we can be satisfied with. Until then we will step back from any
actions whatsoever including Picasso96 updates (sorry about that, but
without something in hand, crippling Picasso96 after releasing an even
better version, does not make any sense at all).
 Now let's come to the point of further development of Picasso96. Will
there be any? Yes, definetely. We are currently working on it. As a
first step we incorporated the changes Thomas Richter has sent us. We
owe him much for this and he deserves a public apology from us for not
being fast in making his fixes available. We owe you one, Thomas (Du
darfst Dir was von uns wünschen, Weihnachten steht vor der Tür!).
 Is that all? Not at all. We are currently working on other software
and hardware driver additions that are unfortunately not ready for
distribution yet and that we can not talk about either because other
parties are also involved.
 Just give us some time. You might be surprised (or not, depending on
your expectations :-))).
 You are still reading this mail? Wow! You must be a devoted Picasso96
user, did you register? :-)
Amiga Update on the net:
 All back issues available at:
Stop by and check out our archive! 
Copyright 2000 by Brad Webb.    Freely distributable, if not modified.
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