"If you think I need to be saved from myself, I probably need to
be saved from you."
THE ULTIMATE "ST NEWS" REFERENCE GUIDE
Part 3 - "LateST NEWS Quest, The" to "Russell, Corinne"
LateST NEWS Quest, The. Enormous 'quest' undertaken by the ST
NEWS editorial staff during the summer of 1989, when Stefan and
Richard travelled to England to meet as many software celebrities
and visit as many software companies as possible. Faithfully
chronicled in Volume 4 Issue 4, which was dedicated to it
entirely. A lot of people were had >interviews with, and
companies such as U.S. Gold, Hewson, Vectordean, Gremlin
Graphics, Vector Graphics, Barrington Harvey (who did PR for
Martech, among others), Virgin Mastertronic, Ocean, Electronic
Arts, Microprose and Argonaut were visited.
Lavaro. A smooth brand of Dutch Brandy, and the penultimate
before >Plantiac was eventually discovered. Lavaro is similarly
nice, though not quite.
Leavin' Teramis. Game released by >Thalion. It was the first game
that Richard did some design for; he designed the playfields for
levels 2 and up. A picture of Jeff Minter can be found on a
higher level, where he shoots off llamas. And there's a really
frantic level ending around a Napalm Death logo, too.
Lemmen, Frank. (b. 27 Oct. 1967) One of the original members of
>Amazing Cracking Conspiracy on the >Commodore 64, switched to
the Atari ST with Richard around Easter of 1986. He wrote a
series of articles called "MIDI Corner", and will probably be
remembered best for his fine tutorial, "How to Clean your Mouse".
He currently works at a computer wholesales organisation and
lives together in Eindhoven with his girlfriend, Yvonne.
Level 16. German coding crew of which member Andreas Franz
(coding name Ilja, apparently) invented no-border screens on the
ST, a technique later infinitely refined (and bled to death) by
the Luxemburg crew Unlimited Matricks (ULM).
'Andreas was a weird but totally ingenious person. He was
quicker than anyone else down the waterslide, could dive in the
water whilst keeping his hair dry and wrote the entire music and
graphics movement code for his "Union Demo" full-screen in the
NOPs between the border-opening commands.' (Richard)
Loucynda. First of Cronos >Warchild's girlfriends, left behind on
>Sucatraps when he started to take the mercenary business
seriously on other planets. He supplied her with a sturdy
chastity belt before he left, though, and she has appeared in
several stories, begging to be released from that burden. Alas,
Cronos appeared to have lost the key. Loucynda is rumoured to
have run off with a blacksmith.
Low Price Software. Initiative of >ST Club Eindhoven's boss,
Hubert van >Mil. It was erected to give members of the computer
club a chance to make a bit of money with the software they'd
written. Stefan released >"The Artist+" through this, whereas
Richard once produced a multi-disk, er, slide show for it (of
questionable content). Other programs released on the 'Low Price
Software' label were "Picworks" and various other programs
produced by >STRIKE-a-LIGHT.
L.S.D. (Little Sound Demo). One of a legendary trilogy of sound
demos by >TEX featuring Atari conversions of musical compositions
by Rob >Hubbard. It was after these demos that TEX got the idea
to do a really big, all-encompassing music demo, which eventually
became the >"B.I.G. Demo".
Lucky Lady. (b. 8 Jan. 1973, d. 3 June 1995) Real name Katja
Kladnik. Slovenian virus coder who found it necessary to
challenge Richard into a kind of arms race where the killing of
new viruses was concerned. She died because of a suicide in June
'Despite her warped tendencies to create viruses, she was a
fascinating person. Especially after she'd switched to the PC,
our correspondence became more informal and personal. It left me
smashed when she died. The >"Ultimate Virus Killer Book" and ST
NEWS Volume 10 Issue 2 were dedicated to her.' (Richard)
Mad Max. See the entry on Jochen >Hippel.
Maggie. Major competing disk magazine, founded in 1990 by Michael
"Sammy Jo" Schüssler of >TLB, later taken over and vastly
improved (interface-wise) when he joined >Delta Force. After a
while, however, control of the magazine, which had been inactive
for a prolonged time then, somehow went to the capable hands of
Chris "I like to call people when they're watching films" Holland
(b. 1 Nov. 1964), a.k.a. CIH (the "I" stands for "Ian"). The
thing that used to be substandard before - i.e. the level of
English - now rose to immaculate heights. Definitely the best
disk magazine around now. Their user interface has in the mean
time been overhauled by Leon O'Reilly of Reservoir Gods.
'Plans are that I will occasionally write bits for them, now ST
NEWS has demised.' (Richard)
Magnat. The make of the speakers that Stefan bought together with
his Kenwood stereo. He later sold them to Richard after buying
the amazing >JBL set. Richard still has the Magnats, and tests
them once in a while with a Napalm Death record or similar. This
also keeps the dust away.
Malmqvist, Niklas. A.k.a. Tanis. The graphics artist of the
legendary Carebears (>TCB). A highly talented artist, who spend
many hours rendering stunning graphics by hand, pixel by pixel.
After he met Stefan at the >ST NEWS International Christmas
Coding Convention, they started writing letters to each other and
became good friends. Later, Niklas became involved in creating
graphics for Stefan's games on the Philips CD-I machine. He
married his girlfriend Lotta on 23 June 1995 and lives in
Malmsteen, Yngwie J. (b. 30 June 1963 as Lars Lannerback) He Who
Plays The Guitars Fastest And Most Brilliantly In The Known
Universe (And Beyond), commonly acronymised as HWPTGFAMBITKU(AB).
Richard's favourite guitar player for a long time, and prime
reason why he quit having guitar lessons (after all, Malmsteen's
level could never be attained with the time and effort he was
prepared to invest). Malmsteen conjured up a guitar style out of
thin air, thus claims ex-keyboardist Jens Johansson, and a lot of
people have mimicked him since (or tried to). Although no longer
his absolute favourite guitar player, Richard was thoroughly
chuffed when he could do an interview with him. He's really cool
to his fans, and really can play the guitar most brilliantly.
Most recommended album: "Rising Force" (1984). His most recent
two albums, "The Seventh Sign" (1994) and "Magnum Opus" (1995)
are really good, too. And the fan club - "Malmsteen Militia" - is
really cool as well.
'Yngwie Malmsteen's interview was the first really important
interview I'd ever done, and I still rank it among the top 3 with
those of Dream Theater and Venom. It was, truly, like a dream
come true.' (Richard)
'I don't really know why I chose this girl to be in here but,
hey, she is. She was the daughter of a latin teacher at my
secondary school, and she was really a lovely person. I fell in
love with her, needless to say, and in a distant past I even
dedicated an issue of ST NEWS to her. That must have been early
1987, prior to >Willeke. I had crushes all the time back then.
Another one that springs to mind is Nicole, whom you'll not find
in this encyclopedia, and the delectable Yony. And even when I
went to University I didn't cease to have crushes. Prior to >Trea
and >Patricia, I had crushes on girls called Anneke and Florien
within a matter of days. If you're interested, well, now you
know. I have recovered my sanity since.' (Richard)
McKiernon, Niall. (b. 11 Dec. 1968) Dear friend of Richard and
proprietor of >Excel Software (-1991) and >Douglas Communications
(1991-). Started distributing the >"Ultimate Virus Killer" at the
beginning of 1989, and eventually got Richard a deal with >CRL.
He is, virtually single-handedly, responsible for getting Richard
through the first three years of his University English career.
'Niall is one of the few trustworthy people in the software
world I know. John Symes of Microdeal springs to mind too, as
well as Jeff Minter. He suffers from general busy-ness, however,
and has to be reminded of things all the time, but he does
deliver the goods eventually. The only bad thing about him is
that he hates "Red Dwarf"! His girlfriend, Sharon, loves it,
Metallica. Totally excellent band, certainly the ST NEWS
editorial staff's favourite band for quite a few years until
a while after the release of the fifth, self-titled album, in
1991. They crashed onto the thrash metal scene in 1983 with their
album "Kill Em All", followed by "Ride The Lightning" (1984),
"Master of Puppets" (1986) and the album that got Richard and
Stefan into them, "...And Justice for All" (1988). Especially the
song "One" off that last album is a true Metalliclassic, which
has been raped at least once on the >ST NEWS Home Vid', where
Stefan and Richard cried along with it, 'playing' guitars and
wearing towels on their heads. Prominent parts of "...AJfA" song
lyrics made it into introductory stories for "Nebulus" ("Eye of
the Beholder") and "Populous" and "Populous: The Promised Lands"
Mil, Hubert van. Boss of >ST Club Eindhoven, the computer club
that was a big influence on the life of ST NEWS. He was a really
funny man, even though he had an echoeing rear crevice that was
inevitably partly reveiled by his ever sinking pants.
Minter, Jeff. (b. 22 April 1962) Stefan's guru and inspiration.
His "Gridrunner" on the VIC 20 still remains a classic and was
the example for Stefan's "Alien Gate", one of Stefan's first
games on the VIC. Yak the Hairy (one of his nicknames) was later
responsible for games like "Revenge of the Mutant Camels" and
"Sheep in Space" that Stefan and Richard spent many hours playing
on the Commodore 64. He switched to the ST and released the light
synthesisers "Colourspace" and "Trip-A-Tron", but nothing got as
much critical acclaim as his commercial games "Super Gridrunner",
"Defender II" and "Photon Storm" and his shareware titles
"Llamatron" (probably the best and most addictive shareware game
ever!) and "Revenge of the Mutant Camels". Especially for the
>"ST NEWS International Christmas Coding Convention", Jeff
submitted his original hand-bescribbled "VIC 20 Internals" as the
first prize for the 3.5 Kb "VIC Times Revisited" competition,
for which he also wrote an amazing 3.5 Kb version of "Gridrunner"
for the ST (!). Interviewed twice in the history of ST NEWS (once
in Volume 2 and once as part of the >"LateST NEWS Quest" in
Volume 4), a third wrapping-things-up interview, in the pipeline
since Volume 9 Issue 2, has unfortunately completely failed to
'On the '64, Minter did a game called "Hellgate". This was so
frantic that the only way to actually play it for more than a few
seconds was just to turn your back to the screen and blast for as
long as fate would allow.' (Richard)
Miranda. (b. 31 July 1968) Richard's first serious girlfriend
after a series of cheap crushes and one or two semi-sleazy things
that went on during the last half of 1988. She lived on his
student floor at Ina >Boudier-Bakkerlaan, Utrecht, so that's how
they met. After the >"LateST NEWS Quest", they just grew so much
towards each other that they started going steady. That lasted to
September 1994, at which time they broke up.
'I won't ever forget Miranda. She taught me a lot and gave me
the self-esteem I so often lacked. I would not be the person I am
today without her. The worst thing I ever did was hurt her when
we broke up. But it had to happen. We kept in touch until her
graduation at the Utrecht University faculty of Veterinary
Science, early 1996, but then she moved. She left no change of
address; I suppose she no longer wants to see me. Well, I can't
say I blame her.' (Richard)
Monochrome Demos. Something that seemed only to happen in ST
NEWS. For quite a while - since the middle of Volume 2 somewhere
- ST NEWS issues have had scrolling messages in their main menu.
When Stefan took over, however, he extended those into true demos
the likes of which have never been seen again on the Atari.
Whereas the entire world seemed to be concentrating on colour
demos, Stefan redefined his own borders. The final monochrome
demos saw the light in the Volume 4 issues. These extended
starfield-monochrome-scrollers including 'sloping wobblers',
'twin baby wobblers' and >Plantiac-induced 'triple sloping
wobbler bouncers', among other silly things that were nice to
look at but sometimes difficult to read.
Monty on the Run. Title of a Commodore 64 game released either
late 1985 or early 1986. It had really cool music by Rob
>Hubbard. Jochen >Hippel converted this piece of music to the
Atari ST, which eventually made it into ST NEWS Volume 2 Issue 5
of July 1987. It ran only in colour modes; it was too fast in
monochrome (this was caused by it running from the vertical
blank, which happens 50 times on colour but 70 times on
Moss, Tim. Foreman of The Lost Boys (>TLB) as Manikin, he became
good friends with Stefan and Richard. Stefan joined his crew The
Lost Boys and they produced some fine ST demos. Tim wrote the
game >"A Prehistoric Tale" for Thalion during summer/autumn of
1990. He later joined Stefan in Holland, at >SPC, to produce
games for the >CD-I. Tim's younger brother, Dave Moss (Spaz of
The Lost Boys), has joined Tim at his current job, at Argonaut
Mr. Pink. Stefan's last >hamster before he moved to >Canada.
Aptly named after the neurotic character in the film "Reservoir
Dogs", this hamster was slightly psychotic yet very sweet. Stefan
gave it to >Miranda before he left. The last of the (formerly) ST
NEWS-owned hamsters, it just might still be alive today.
Mucky Pup. Party-core metal band that Richard got in to in
early 1989 when he walked into >"White Noise" and heard the song
"Little Pigs" off their new "A Boy in a Man's World" CD. He
bought the album right away. Mucky Pup enters ST NEWS history
once again at the end of that year, when the >Ose clan gets
turned into this music.
'Apparently, Mucky Pup wasn't available in Norway. We just
happened to have "A Boy in a Man's World" with us, and the Oses
went mad about it. We sold them our CDs and bought new ones when
we got back to the Netherlands. In exchange, the Norwegians -
Ronny >Hatlemark, actually - got us to dig the German thrash
metal band Vendetta (with their excellent "Brain Damage").'
Muier Schipperbitter. A drink discovered by Stefan's father (Harm
Posthuma) and one that Richard and Stefan embraced as a great
companion to >Plantiac. Sweet and full of herbs, it is a great
drink indeed. It's excellent to alleviate throat-aches.
Muier Shipbiter. A fictional species of large flightless
tracking bird of Altitude Pleiadis, used by a guest-starring Data
in >"Oh Yeah" (the third instalment) to illustrate his theory on
post-mortem propulsion. After death, it is capable of travelling
back to its place of birth by means of involuntary post-mortem
muscle convulsions induced by electrical patterns emanating from
the brain decomposition process. The largest recorded distance
covered by this wholly unique means of vertebrate propulsion is
67.62 earth miles.
Multiface I & II. Hardware cartridges produced in Britain (by a
company called something similar to "Romantic Robot" or
something), allowing games to be 'frozen' and screen snapshots to
be taken. "Multiface" was released in 1988, and an improved
"Multiface II" in 1989. They were provided to ST NEWS for
reviewing, and eventually became the start of a recurring thing
in ST NEWS involving offensively nude, long-limbed aliens from
'Brussels sprouts have never been the same since.' (Richard)
Multifizzic Omega. Fictional planet on which live the >Mutant
Maxi Mega Monsters of Multifizzic Omega. This planet eventually
got blown up in the Cronos >Warchild story "Lord of the Things".
Mutant Maxi Mega Monster. Inhabitants of a planet called
>Multifizzic Omega, reportedly the smelliest creatures in the
known universe. They can excrete foul-smelling gases from more
than a dozen bodily openings simultaneously. They - or rather,
their excrements - first appear in the Cronos >Warchild story
"Circus Games", where he had to clean the sanitary facilities of
the >Ambulor Eight Thai Boxing School. Appearing several times in
other stories, the Mutant Maxi Mega Monsters of Multifizzic
Omega eventually get blown up, along with their planet, in "Lord
of the Things". Emperor Frothgar the Merciless' daughter, Deirde,
was the last surviving member of the race, until she got sprayed
by Incandescent Orchid toilet refreshener and evaporated
My Dying Bride. Seriously doomy and zealously groovy doom metal
band from Yorkshire, England, where, if one takes this music into
consideration, things must be perpetually dark and gloomy. Make
an awesome bunch of music, peaking in their third full-length
studio album, "The Angel and the Dark River" (1995). Probably the
best band in the genre.
Natanga. Thrillseeker hamster, Stefan's first >hamster after
moving into his place at the >Sibeliuspark in >Oss. The name is
derived from the word 'Tatanga' which means 'Buffalo' in a Native
American language according to the film "Dances with Wolves". A
very peaceful and sweet creature, it was later named
'Thrillseeker' by Stefan Kimmlingen (Tyrem of The Respectables -
TRB) after he witnessed it scaling an eight-foot wall and taking
a plunge after it reached the ceiling. A sort of bungee-jumping
hamster without the bungee. Fortunately, hamsters are resilient
so after a short K.O. period Natanga resumed its inquisitive gait
like nothing had happened.
Nephilim. A large, black female >hamster with a vicious streak.
Natanga's mate (they produced many offspring) and hostile to
anyone but Stefan. After biting Niklas >Malmqvist (Tanis of
>TCB) in his nose and finger she was dubbed 'The Killer Hamster'.
Nephilim, Fields of the. A dark and gothic band that was active
from the mid 80's to the early 90's. After Niklas >Malmqvist
urged Stefan to listen to them, Stefan became totally addicted to
their music and to this day he maintains they are one of the best
bands ever. Their album "Elizium" (1990) is still Stefan's
favourite CD. The band disbanded not long after the release of
New Atari User. New name of British Atari magazine "Page 6",
edited by Les Ellingham, and first British distributor of ST NEWS
until they started covered rather too much Atari 8-bit and not
enough of the ST/Falcon side of things (that was May 1993).
News Channel. A disk magazine that appeared in the Netherlands
somewhere in 1987 and which remained alive for about one year.
It became kind of infamous for its mainly polemic battle with ST
NEWS, which mainly concerned their contacting the ST NEWS
authors, using their music and setting up a foreign distributor
network by contacting the ST NEWS nodes. For a while, some of the
people behind "News Channel" seemed to be getting back in the
picture with "STabloid", but this magazine died in utero.
Norway. Thin but very long country located in Scandinavia and
filled with a sufficiently small amount of Norwegians to make the
landscape appear unspoiled and beautiful (which it is). The
>Nutty Norwegians live in it, and two >Norway Quests have been
undertaken to it.
Norway Quest. The first Norway Quest was a trip that Stefan and
Richard took around New Year 1989-1990 to the town of Ørsta,
where Ronny >Hatlemark lived. It was a great visit, really
chaotic and exciting, and they met a lot of new friends such as
the >Oses and Gard >Abrahamsen. Ronny's kid sister even got a
crush on Stefan. Time was spent climbing mountains (or, in the
case of Richard, crashing down half-way, out of asthmatic
breath), writing the >real-time article, boozing, and playing
>"Bubble Bobble". The second Norway Quest was rather more subtle,
and undertaken during the summer of 1993 by Richard and >Miranda.
They first visited Kai >Holst and then Ronny Hatlemark. The
summers of Norway are much more beautiful because it's just about
light all the time (quite different from nocturnal 15:00 hours in
the winter), though there are a shitload of flies in the forests!
Nutty Norwegians. Name, lovingly applied to two different
"generations" ("batches", actually) of Norwegians. The first real
Nutty Norwegian was Ronny >Hatlemark, quickly joined by Frøystein
>Hustadnes and Torbjørn >Ose (also see >HackBear, Lord). During
the first >Norway Quest, Gard >Abrahamsen and other members of
the Ose clan joined in. After the visit, the "new generation"
came into being later. This included Kai >Holst and Leif Einar
>Claus. Interestingly, Gard is the only person who was befriended
with both "generations". See also all entries starting with
'And then, of course, there was the virtual Nutty Norwegian,
Rune. He appeared frequently in >Crazy Letters, but when we
visited Norway he, well, didn't appear.' (Richard)
Oh Yeah. Series of stories Stefan and Richard wrote just as a
vehicle for alcohol-induces rantings, featuring a lot of
dreamscapes, awakenings, stream-of-consciousness and surreal
bits. They inevitably lack a coherent plot or narrative, which is
probably what the three "Oh Yeah" stories have in common, apart
from the fact that the segments were written by Richard and
Stefan alternately, allowing them to go with each other's flow.
"Oh Yeah" (the first instalment) was written on the occasion of
ST NEWS' going >undead, in spring of 1990; "Oh Yeah - The Sequel"
was written in February 1992; "Oh Yeah III - The Third Encounter
(And of a Close Kind)" was written in May and June of 1994.
>Ants, >Honey and, er, procedures involving hot water bottles,
feature in them aplenty.
Olivetti. Brand name of the computer that was used next to
Stefan's Atari ST to process the second ever >real-time article
(covering the finishing of an issue of ST NEWS at his place). It
claimed to be portable, but was in fact only just.
Ose. Surname of a Norwegian clan that flickered briefly into
stardom during the ST NEWS >Norway Quest. Members comprise
Torbjørn Ose (>HackBear, Lord & >Torbjørn), Ole J. Ose and Morten
Ose. When original ST NEWS distributor for >Norway, Ronny
>Hatlemark, bought a PC, Torbjørn became the new distributor (and
he, too, now only owns a PC, albeit one with a "Gemulator").
Oss. A small town in the south of Holland where Stefan lived from
February 1991 January 1995, when he moved to >Canada.
O.U.C.H. Home Vid'. Stunningly artsy but also astoundingly boring
videos, of which two sequels were made. The first two were made
in 1990, the third instalment about a year later. They were
conceived by Gard Eggesbø >Abrahamsen and his equally insane
brother, Jardar. The two first parts made it to the ST NEWS
editorial staff members. The third part, although requested time
and again, never made it there. Parts of it were seen during
Richard and >Miranda's trip to >Norway in the summer of 1993.
Overlanders, The (OVL). French demo crew that started out coding
in "GfA Basic" but eventually switched to machine code and made
such memorable demos as >"European Demos" and ">Froggies over the
Fence". Among their ranks are Dogue the Mauve (English expert)
and the legendary Ziggy Stardust and Mr. Bee, possibly the best
coders ever to come out of France (although the independent M-
Coder was also pretty good!).
Page 6. Not to be confused with "Page 3". Refer to the article on
>"New Atari User", of which it was the old name.
Patricia. One of the semi-sleazy affairs Richard had in the
latter half of 1988. He's originally met her in a child's home
he'd been in from mid 1979 to December 1981, and had had
something of an affair with her back then (as far as that can be
the case with 14-year-olds). She suddenly stepped back in his
life and they had one extremely intense afternoon together until,
a week or two later, she called to say that, well, really they
'It was a very disturbing period of my life. Girls, women,
"Virus Destruction Utility" and ST NEWS, that was all I really
did. Patricia was the first love of my life; literally for years
after I'd left the child's home I kept on hoping I'd run into her
on a street corner, that she'd turned out to have moved to
>Helmond. And for an even longer time I could only fall in love
(and invariably fell in love) with girls who in some way looked
like her. When she stepped back in my life for about a month -
even though we only had one afternoon together - I felt more
destroyed then ever before when she stepped out of it again just
like that <snap fingers>. In retrospect I don't know what was
wrong with me.' (Richard)
Percival of Zuul. French person who made a deafening appearance
on the >STNICCC, and has hence retreated into anonimity
(understandably). He is also known as He Who Burpeth Loudest In
The Known Universe.
Peugeot. The make of Stefan's first car, type 305, a very old and
beat-up diesel that belched black fumes and used about a litre of
oil every 100 kilometers. It was captured briefly - and with
dented rear door - on the >"ST NEWS Home Vid'". After a few
months, it was replaced by the >Alfa Romeo. When Richard started
work at Thalion, he soon bought a second-hand silver-coloured
Peugeot 205 GTI 1.9. Although it suffered from starting problems
at every possible inconvenient moment, it served him well.
Incidentally, Mark van den >Boer also owned a Peugeot 205 before
he went to move around the world.
'Hey, they only had a silver-coloured car available, second-
hand. I would have preferred a black one, or even red. Anyway,
the money I got back when I sold it, upon quitting work at
>Thalion, propelled me through the financial side of my
University Education for three years.' (Richard)
Piper. Person who used to be connected to a 'Stichting'
(foundation) in Amsterdam. He wrote several articles for ST
NEWS, and the editorial staff also stayed at his place during the
>LateST NEWS Quest. He still writes for >FaST Club's "ST
Applications" now and then.
Pippi. An adventurous >hamster owned by Richard in 1986. This
small rodent was, in fact, one of the reasons why Stefan
contacted him in the first place. The name was given by at the
time co-conspirator Frank >Lemmen.
'I once let the animal run free on my >roofroom at the old place
where I lived in >Helmond. It disappeared! I put a bucket on the
staircase and put hamster food in it. That way, I hoped, Pippi
would smell the food, descend the stairs and fall into the
bucket, caught again. It was summer of 1986. It was hot. I slept
with my bedroom door open. At a certain instant, far past
midnight, I awoke because of the scratching of paws, trying to
get out of the bucket. It was Pippi. We were again reunited
(swallow away a tear of remembered joy).' (Richard)
Plantiac. Particularly soothing brand of Dutch brandy (Dutch
"Vieux") which, although not exactly crafted according to a near-
natural principles, awards the enthusiastic sipper with a smooth
feeling in the throat, a pleasant feeling in the head, a warm
feeling in the gullet and stomach, and no hangover to boot! Also
known as 'The Divine Fluid', it has been known to make its way on
more than one (especially Dutch) coding convention. A few people
really learned to like this thanks to ST NEWS, and at least one
bottle was exported - to great joy and general shoutings of
"yeah!" - to >Norway during the >"Norway Quest". To get to the
bottom of the process which is used to make this Fluid, the
>"Plantiac Pilgrimages" were undertaken.
'After having tested - literally - just about any conceivable
brand of 'vieux', Stefan's dad (Harmen Posthuma, may he live to
be a hundred and Zen!) suggested we try Plantiac. We'd never
heard of it before, but were hooked instantly. It's not commonly
available in all the shops, which is probably why we hadn't
discovered it yet. That was around mid 1988. Plantiac rrroools!'
'It's the thing I miss most about Holland ever since I live in
>Canada. When I came to Holland, last June, I made sure to bring
a bottle to Canada with me!' (Stefan)
Plantiac Pilgrimage, I & II. Two quests undertaken in 1991 in
order to get to the roots of the creation process of >Plantiac.
The first one consisted of Stefan and Richard going to the
ancient city of Bolsward, in the North of the Netherlands, where
Plantiac was allegedly made (as proclaimed on each bottle). The
date was 19 June 1991, the day after the >Eureka Event of
Excellence. As it turned out, Plantiac was no longer made there
(and hadn't been for quite a few years). After this initial
disappointment, a Second Pilgrimage was proposed. This time to
the UTO Company in Schiedam, where Plantiac actually turned out
to be made, or bottled at least. Unfortunately, Stefan could not
attend on this date, November 7th 1991, but Plantiac was only
bottled once every few months on the huge UTO company bottling
'I still remember the smell of Plantiac where the bottles got
filled. I thought I was in liquor heaven!' (Richard)
Poland. Country that was subject of a fairly extensive
encyclopedic effort in ST NEWS some years ago, triggered by the
fact that there seemed to be an ever increasing Polish Atari
scene. For any information about Poland and the Polish Atari
scene as such, please be advised to check it out.
'It failed to generate any major movements in Poland, nor did it
create an interest in the Polish cause among the non-Polish.
Still, it might have taught some people - like I know it did me -
something about Polish culture, customs, geography and Atari
Popcorn. 1. Title of the first piece of music that ever made it
into ST NEWS, in Volume 2 Issue 1 to be more exact. It was a so-
called "XBIOS 32" music file. The next three issues were not to
have any music, until Jochen >Hip...but that's another story.
2. Cinema snack that is great to munch on in the cinema, though
not to hear someone else munch on during such an occasion. Two
truly huge buckets full of this stuff were devoured by the ST
NEWS editorial staff during their >"LateST NEWS Quest" evening
out to see "Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade" in a big London
cinema. Popcorn exists in two varieties: Salty (disgusting) and
sweet (delicious). People with artificial teeth don't like either
Posthuma, Melanie. (b. 23 July 1970). Stefan's sister. She
witnessed the many computer geeks coming and going to and from
her brother's room with wonder. She's currently residing in Hong
Kong with her husband, Craig, working as a flight attendant for
'I remember that she was really good at >"Bubble Bobble", or at
least alleged to be. One day Stefan and me went to town with her
and she really held back. When I asked why, Stefan said she was
like a butterfly, not really eager to come out right away. Really
odd how something as silly as that sticks to your mind.'
Posthuma, Stefan. (b. 14 Apr. 1966) After writing a few games of
the >Commodore VIC 20, Stefan bought a >Commodore 64 and together
with his friend Eric van Orsouw started exploring that machine's
capabilities. By that time he was doing the Dutch Atheneum, a
scientific highschool. He wrote a multi-directional scrolling
platform game called "Hades" which became a small Public Domain
hit (although there was no such term as 'Public Domain' back
then). After that he wrote "Scuttle", a game published by the
Dutch software house Aackosoft. He successfully competed in the
Dutch national computer-kid competition called "Micro Masters
Holland" winning a Philips ":YES PC" (including thje ":", yes)
that he quickly traded against an Atari ST. His computer-
interests didn't really coincide with his school work and he
failed to complete his high school, much to the dismay of his
parents who then insisted that he had to follow a computer
training course. He was by then working on an ambitious Commodore
64 project called "Paradox", a vertical shoot-them-up with many
zany ideas. But when the ST came around, he abandoned the
project. The computer training course send him to a company
called Stebis where he did six months as a trainee. At that point
the company changed into >SPC/Company and Stefan became its first
employee, programming transaction software for a big Amsterdam
bank in "Informix 4GL" under Unix, as far away from games as you
can imagine. Years later, SPC started writing software for the
Philips >CD-I, something that spawned Stefan's professional games
career and ultimately his departure to >Gray Matter in >Canada.
As far as ST NEWS is concerned, Stefan got into contact with
Richard in 1986 due to a joined interest in >hamsters. Strangely
enough, years later, Stefan would still have Richard's first
letter lying in his car console somewhere. Over the years, Stefan
continually wrote more and more bits for ST NEWS, including
scroller sub-routines and such. He took over the editorial
sceptre from Volume 3 Issue 2 to Volume 8 Issue 1 (May 1988 to
'I still maintain that if I hadn't spent all those hours locked
away in my bedroom writing code for the VIC 20 and the Commodore
64, I wouldn't be in Canada right now producing high-profile 32-
bit titles.' (Stefan)
'I remember that, as a 'music ripper' on the Commodore 64 scene,
I tried to rip the music from "Scuttle". It was a Jean Michel
>Jarre composition, I think. I failed, much to my chagrin. When I
later met Stefan and I found out he'd done that game, he
sniggered and I thought this is a small world indeed.' (Richard)
Practical Computing. Mid-eighties British multi-format computer
magazine that Richard was subscribed to around the time when he
decided to buy a Commodore 64, summer 1984. Some of the stories
in this magazine later made it into the Volume 1 issues of ST
NEWS, lacking proper crediting.
Pratchett, Terry. Writer who did to fantasy fiction what Douglas
>Adams did to science fiction. With his Discworld novels he has
brought joy and inspiration to many lives, including those of the
people in the ST NEWS editorial staff. Unlike Adams, however, he
is a lot more optimistic and certainly a lot more prolific. He
has written some more stuff, such as the "Nome Trilogy" and, with
Neil Gaiman, "Good Omens". All equally excellent.
'Pratchett influences made it into quite a few of the ST NEWS
stories, though most in "Obviously Influenced by the Devil". Even
>Death appears in that.' (Richard)
Prehistoric Tale, A. Game released by >Thalion software, Germany,
in January 1991, and written chiefly by Tim >Moss of >TLB with
graphics by his brother Dave, during the summer and autumn of
1989. It was designed by Richard, based on the principle of the
Commodore 64 game "Dino Eggs" with lots of new knobs on, but as
deadline and costs pressures mounted, more and more bits of the
game concept had to be scrapped until, in the end, nothing more
than the bare essentials of "Dino Eggs" remained. This was quite
a disappointingly demotivating affair for Tim and Dave, but
Richard wasn't happy with it either. New Mode of Delta Force and
Stefan also contributed bonus screens.
'I had wanted to do a souped-up version of "Dino Eggs", one of
my favourite Commodore 64 games, for years. I recently found a
really old picture file of some backgrounds I drew myself back
when I'd just bought a colour monitor, back in early 1987 or late
1986. To me, the chance came when I could design and produce a
game for Thalion. But "A Prehistoric Tale" was a a bit of a
disappointment for all involved, even though it scored an average
of 75% in all the computer magazines.' (Richard)
Quartermass Xperiment. Highly virtual - and virtuous - demo
coding group on the Atari platform, originally consisting of
Relayer (Juri Horneman, coder), The Mind (Laurens van der
Klis, music programmer), Apache (Eloy Wouters, coder) and The
Nutty Snake (Alex Crouzen, PR and scroll text writing). Late 1990
they were joined by Cronos >Warchild (Richard >Karsmakers,
scroll writer). They have never ever released a demo, not even a
single-screen one, but did write a few scroll texts. The Mind
wrote music that was used in three issues of ST NEWS (for a
complete list, see the entry on >Hippel, Jochen). Juri now works
at >Thalion software (has been since early 1991).
Queensrÿche. Really excellent progressive metal band from Seattle
(one of the few bands, together with Jimi Hendrix, to come out of
Seattle :-)), responsible for Richard's prime 1990 concert
experience when he went to see them perform all of their
legendary "Operation Mindcrime" (1988) album live as part of
their "Building Empires" tour.
Real-time Articles. One of the few things that were actually
invented by ST NEWS, or at least believed to be. The first
recorded occurrence was during a visit of >TEX to Holland, in
March 1988. Real-time articles add the time factor (the fourth
dimension, if you will) to one's writing. No coding party of any
kind these days gets done without there at least being an attempt
at a real-time article.
'It just seemed to be the logical way. A bit like a diary. I've
been keeping one of those since I was 16 - November 1985 - and
introduced the actual real-time thing in that after the summer of
Red Dwarf. Highly popular and very witty BBC scifi TV series
featuring the last human, a highly evolved cat, a hologram and a
sanitation mechanoid. Originally discovered in book form by
Stefan, and quickly devoured by Richard as well. Only later did
they find out that it was a TV series, actually. The scripts
and books are written by Grant Naylor, a gestalt entity of two
people occupying one body. There's a "Red Dwarf" fan club, too.
'"Red Dwarf" is ever so much funnier than "The Hitchhiker's
Guide to the Galaxy". Granted, Adams is marvellous, but "Red
Dwarf" is less cynical about things. A clean laugh, but knee-
slapping nonetheless.' (Richard)
Roofroom. One of the ST NEWSisms, words made up because there
either wasn't a word in existence to describe the thing, or
because both members of the editorial staff were blissfully
unaware of the word's existence. A 'roofroom' is, of course, an
attic. One of these particular roofrooms was occupied by Richard
while he still lived with his parents, in >Helmond.
Rune. Virtual Norwegian, introduced by Ronny >Hatlemark in an
early 1989 >Crazy Letter as one of the people who would be
present at the then still hypothetical visit of the ST NEWS
editorial staff to >Norway. Like Frøystein >Hustadnes and
Torbjørn >Ose, he quickly became part of hypothetical >real-time
articles of visits to Norway and the like, but in the end sight
nor sound was caught of him when the visit really happened.
Russell, Corinne. In ST NEWS Volume 3 Issue 4 there was the
review of a game called "Vixen", published by Martech. It was a
rather lousy game, but ST NEWS had a true competition where
several copies could be won, thanks to the efforts of their PR
agency, Barrington Harvey (and their employee, the lovely Nadia
Singh). To cut a long story short, Corinne Russell was the Page 3
model who was hired to pose for the game's intro picture and
accompanying poster. The posters in the games to be won were all
signed by her.
`That issue was also >dedicated to her. The competition, by the
way, was to guess her sizes as accurately as possible.' (Richard)