Classic Computer Magazine Archive START VOL. 5 NO. 5 / JANUARY 1991


Dump The 8-Bit
It came as a shock to me that I now have to live with, and pay for, 8-bit stuff in my favorite ST magazine, when I go out of my way to skip all references of 8-bit stuff on the BBSs I call so I won't Waste my online time. Now it'll get me at home.

If the 8-bit market is so small that they cannot support their own magazine, then they deserve to be without one. The few months of advertising revenue you'll get from the three or four remaining 8-bit vendors can't he so much as to jeopardize your ST-only readers.
Dennis Conway
Los Angeles, CA

Users of the 8-bit Atari computers are probably staying with their machines for one of the following reasons: they can't afford to buy another computer, or they're perfectly happy with what they have. While there may not be many 8-bit vendors left (there are certainly more than three), there are plenty of users who are important to us. As long as the demand for 8-bit support is there, Antic Publishing, through START will continue to provide a resource for the classic Atari computer -START Ed.

Problems With Bombs
Recently, I began having a serious problem when using Desktop Publisher ST. When loading an existing DTP file I experience an intermittent two-bomb crash when the paragraph-styles information loads. If the file does load in OK, printing sometimes causes the program to crash. I booted with a program called ANTIBOMB, and the error messages it gave mc were EXCEPTION ERROR or BUS ERROR. All my other programs run without problems. I have erased and reinstalled the program from my master disks, to no avail. I also installed the program to run from floppy disks, but the problem persists. Is there a way to determine if this is a bug in the program, or is my computer going bad?
Larry Borchelt
Goshen, IN

If the computer crashes only when you use a certain program, then the problem is not with your computer hardware. If the problem has only recently started, then it's not a bug in the program, either. Perhaps a new desk accessory or AUTO-folder program on your hard drive is interfering with Desktop Publisher. Disable these programs until you find the culprit. Also, check all of your floppy disks for a virus. If there is one on your master Desktop Publisher disks, it could be causing your problems. Finally, its possible that the master disk itself became corrupted (cosmic radiation?), and when you made a backup to jour hard drive, the offending byte was passed along. In that case, contact Timeworks to ask about a replacement. -START Ed.

Thank you for the very favorable review of Tracker/ST which appeared in your November 1990 issue. I'd like to take a moment to clarify two points made by your reviewer.

First, the current version of Tracker/ST (version 2.03) fixes the mouse clicking problem that occurred with TOS 1.4. All of Tracker! ST's buttons now work with every version of TOS, including the STE TOS and the TT TOS. In July we sent this free upgrade to every registered Tracker/ST owner.

Second, Tracker/ST's mail merge does indeed allow you to insert fields into a letter. All you have to do is place an ampersand before and after the field name. For example, typing in &CITY& would result in each person's city being printed in the mail merge.

Anyone who has version 2.0 of Tracker/ST should send in their registration card with the serial number filled in, and we will automatically upgrade them to v2.03, free of charge.
Nevin Shalit
Step Ahead Software Inc.
New York, NY

Step Ahead Software has a new address. 496-A Hudson St., Suite 39F, New NY 10014 -STARTEd.

CCITT Explained
I just finished the telecommunications article by Jerry McBride in the May 1990 issue. I learned a lot from it, but I was left with some questions. The article did not explain some of the modem features listed, like CCITT, MNP Levels 2-5 and External (External what?). Also, the article made a point of telling the readers to buy a modem with a built-in speaker, but then did not tell us if any of the featured products had one.
Carl Wade
Ventura, CA

CCITT means that the modem is compatible with the CCITT standard for 2400-baud modems. CCITT is a European agency, the International Consultative Committee for Telephony and Telegraphy. MNP refers to Microcom Networking Protocol, which is a method for correcting transmission errors caused by line noise. External means that the modem is an external unit (internal modems are installed inside the computer's case). All of the modems mentioned in the article have built-in speakers. - START Ed.