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  • ST Format (August 1990)

    Source: ST Format – Issue Number 13 – August 1990

    ST Format was a magazine published in the U.K. that was dedicated to the Atari ST. It started life as part of Amiga/ST Format but they split into their own individual publications shortly after introduction. The August 1990 issue of ST Format includes:

    • News – All you need to know about the month’s ST activity
    • News from abroad – Releases and information from across Europe
    • Game Previews – A first look at Mag Scrolls’ Wonderland and more
    • Inside Story: magic fly – FORMAT Graphics Editor recalls two years’ work on the Electronic Arts extravaganza
    • Cover Disk Plus – Carefully crafted, lovingly compiled – a real stonker!
    • Games: screenplay – Damocles, Wipe Out, Flood, AMC, F-29, Midnight Resistance, Khalaan, Thunderstrike, Treasure Trap, Atomix, Rorke’s Drift, Skidz, Prophecy
    • Gamebusters special – Coo! Not four, not five, not even seven but nine (count ’em) pages of top cheats for more than 100 ST games!
    • Adventure gamebusters – The A-to-Z of adventure cheats, hints and solutions
    • Special: The bullfrogs are back! – The team that brought the world Populous are back with a splash. Remember, you read it here first.
    • Desktop – How, you ask, can we cram so much info into four and a half pages? Don’t know, we
    • Exclusive: Proxima – Now you can afford to get into DTP – with a package that costs just a third of the price of Calamus!
    • Subscriptions
    • Educations – FORMAT goes European with a range of foreign language tutorial programs. Roll on 1992!
    • Music tips – Welcome to a new section of help and problem-solving for all aspects of making
    • Music buyers guide – It’s all very well of us telling you what your ST can do with MIDI. But what if you can’t afford brand new kit?
    • Series: program in C – Master this powerful programming language
    • Feedback – Complaints, compliments and curious observations
    • Special Offers – Treat your ST – offers you can’t refuse!
    • The back page – Devastatingly inaccurate guesses at what might

    Cover Disk

    • Battlemaster – Fully playable demo of the latest PSS extravaganza
    • GFA Draft – realize your ST’s CAD potential with this high-quality exclusive demo – power extreme!
    • FreeRAM – memory checker
    • Puzzle – complete word game
    • HRAMDisk – reset-proof RAMdisk
    • GEMPlus – brilliant Desktop editor
    • Command Line Interpreter – put your mouse of work with this feature-packed GEM alternative
    • Mouse Ka Mania – wacky mouse customizer

    …and more!

  • ST / Amiga Format (July 1988)

    Source: ST / Amiga Format – Issue Number 1 – July 1988

    ST / Amiga Format was a U.K. based magazine dedicated to the Atari ST and Amiga computers. It would only last for about a year before being split into two separate titles. The first issue of ST / Amiga Format from July 1988 inlcludes:

    • News – Hot gossip from both sides of the Atlantic with a Comdex report and news from Atari’s dealer product show.
    • Futures – Transputers – are they all hot air? We’ve had a close look at what’s really going on, and reveal the shape of tomorrow’s computers.
    • Letters – How can you have readers’ letters in issue 1? Okay, so we’re telling porkies – but read it anyway.
    • Gold Dust – Steve Gold plugs into the electronic grapevine. 68020, 68030, Unix, ST Laptops, Amiga graphics upgrades… all the best news is leaked here first.
    • Questionnaire – Yes, we want your personal details – inside leg measurements, favorite colors… Tell us all and we’ll build a better magazine.
    • Special Offers – All the best ST and Amiga-ware at rock-bottom prices.
    • Escape Sequence – Scraping rock bottom at the rear end of the issue. A caustic cast around the months’ worst stories. Also the first episode of our 16 bit cartoon strip.
    • Disk Extra – Demos of Oids (ST) and Interceptor (Amiga) plus a host of invaluable utilities for mortals and boffins alike.
    • Graphics
      • Photon and Spectrum – Reviews of two brand new graphics packages – Photon Paint for the Amiga and Spectrum 512 for the ST.
    • Music
      • Animal House – Chris Jenkins went along to the Animal House recording studio to see how professional rock stars use the ST’s MIDI capabilities.
      • Pro-Sound Designer – A look at what promises to be the most exciting music package yet for the Amiga, courtesy of Eidersoft.
    • Special
      • Word Processors
      • – It’s the single most important serious application for a computer. We check out the full range of WP packages, on both ST and Amiga.

      • Competition – An Epson GQ3500 laser printer must be won in this brain-taxing competition, plus a consolation prize of a 24-pin LQ850.

    …and more!

  • Intellicom (Atari ST)

    Source: STart: The ST Quarterly – Issue Number 1 – Summer 1986

    Those born in the Internet age may never know the struggles and joys of the pre-internet online world. While the Internet wasn’t widely accessible to the public until the mid 1990s, there were plenty of online alternatives. There were of course the big, centralized services like CompuServe, Prodigy, etc. but local BBSes were always more fun to me (and usually free). To access this world, you basically needed three things. First, a computer of some sort. It didn’t have to be a top of the line “PC”, any 8-bit computer like the Commodore 64 would do as well. Second, you needed a modem. The faster the better but what was available and affordable changed often in those days. Finally, you needed terminal software which was a program to control the modem, accept input and display output from the remote system. It could be thought of as a pre-cursor to the web browser.

    There were many communications programs to chose from. By the late 1980s, you could get pretty good ones for free but that wasn’t always the case. This particular selection, Intellicom for the Atari ST, would set you back about $70. There were certain things you needed to look for in a terminal program. You would want it to support your modem of course, and then ANSI graphics support was necessary for the best display from BBSes, and you would want support for the most popular download protocols. By the late 1980s or early 1990s this was ZModem but before that XModem was king. These were what let you download files from the BBS. This ad is from 1986 so I don’t think ZModem was around yet or at least not commonly used however Intellicom supports XModem so that would have been fine at the time. I never had an Atari ST so I’m not sure what the alternatives were in 1986.

    Up until the early 1990s, BBSes were very common. Even in a relatively small town you could probably find a dozen or so. They may be dedicated to certain topics or computer types or more general. A BBS was comparable to a website today. A website may offer files to download, a discussion forum, live chat, and even games. A BBS provided exactly the same things. It’s just that typically a BBS could usually only accept one caller at a time (or occasionally 2 and more rarely 3 or 4). But that was okay, if the line was busy on one, just dial another. Later on, BBSes stopped being primarily a dial-up affair and expanded to support telnet via the Internet. They are still out there and you should definitely give one a try. You’ll still need terminal software but now it comes in the form of a telnet client. Anybody up for some L.O.R.D.?