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EDITORIAL - SOME DISTURBING NEWS

But baby just when this world seems mean and cold
Our love comes shining red and gold


- Dire Straits

Dark times have passed. Struck down by illness, I have been
confined to my bed the last few days. Bathing in sweat, I used to
wake up in the middle of the night with a chilling cry after
facing Death once more. With trembling hands, I made the first
drafts of my will, and pale-faced men in long black robes came to
me one night, measuring my body. I can still smell the Vulture-
droppings they had on their top-hats. My mother tried to cure me
by feeding me large amounts of a palliating spirit, and my dad
just stood besides my bed and watched his son suffer, hoping to
find some sign of rehabilitation in my delerious mutterings.
My short, haunted sleeps were infested with nightmares of
despairing blackness and my feverish conciousness was torn apart
by waves of dark deception. Drifting away into a liveless
existence, I was on the brink of insanity until I found the
strength to grasp the few rays of sunlight in my dark soul caused
by the limitless sources of inspiration embodied by persons like
Alida and things like my Stereo, my Walkman and my ST.
But recovery was not made easy for me. The dark fingers of the
disease kept gnawling at my heart and sometimes I felt like
slipping back into the obscuring depths of pain and despair. But
time after time I withstood the vicious attacks, although the
battle drained all energy from me. My flesh looked dead and my
eyes were hollow and without spirit. For three days, I remained
in this condition of weakness. But I did not give up. Thinking of
the joys in life, the smile of Alida and the enthousiasm of the
ST NEWS readers, gave me new strength to fight the demons within
me. Slowly, my strength grew and I found new ways of purging my
soul of the grey illness.
Three days later, my flu was over.

The greatest thing that has passed since the making of
ST NEWS 4.1 is the TEX Weekend Richard and I experienced. We went
to Gütersloh and visited the bunch of famous demo-writers. 30
hours later we were exhausted. Tired but satisfied we went home,
with us some diskettes containing the hottest demo material ever
and a real-time article of unsurpassed quality. It is about 70Kb
in lenght and features the whole experience, from Saturday
morning 7am until Sunday evening when we returned. It is featured
in this very issue and you just HAVE to read it.

Also, I have again been doing a lot of programming. Not only
have I created yet another color demo to be included in this
issue (this time with tracking sprites, a bouncing raster and
colorful scrolling), I also did some monochrome-tricks and I
reprogrammed almost the entire ST NEWS source. Especially the
Write-WP and Format disk options have been tackled since they
still continued some minor bugs (especially Norwegians seemed
to suffer from them). So I reprogrammed them fully in machine
code. If you create a WP file now, it will be a TRUE WP file. You
can reformat it etc. Also when you format a disk, a track and
side counter is included and the formatted disk will be optimally
immunized according to the latest immunize codes used in the VDU
3.3 by Richard Karsmakers. This means that the bootsector is
executable (but the code only contains a RTS) so some ignorant
viruskillers will scream that it might be a virus which it is NOT
of course.

The program has become more compact and also the file handling
on disk has been drastically changed. Since I have heard rumours
about people ripping all sorts of things (especially Mad Max'
music) from our beloved ST NEWS, I made life a little harder on
those who seek to steal from us. All files have been vigorously
endcoded and compacted into one big file. But I will say no more
of it.

Some of you might have noticed yet another influence in my
writing. The intro of this editorial and the intro to the 'format
disk' article are quite different. This is because I am reading
'The Cronicles of Thomas Covenant' by Stephen Donaldson. This is
THE most brilliant collection of books I have read since the Lord
of the Rings by J.R.R. Tolkien. They consume me totally when I
read and make me forget everything around me. It even led to the
point when I read in the bus and actually forgot to get out. The
story is so well conceivend and grippening that you just cannot
stop reading. Right now it is lying besides me and I can hardly
resist the temptation of climbing in bed and read some more. I
have reached the end of the third book of the First Cronicles and
I am dying to find out what happenes to Elena, who has broken the
Law of Death and is now a servant of Lord Foul the Despiser. With
the Staff of Law, she seeks to destroy the Colossus, the last
token of Earthpower besides Revelstone. She has captured Bannor
of the Bloodguard and the Giant Saltheart Foamfollower. Also the
two evil Ravers are there and she holds the White Gold, Thomas
Covenant's wedding ring. Covenant is also there and he is
incapable of stopping her. Now he calls on Triock, a Stonedownor
who is submitted by the powers of Elena, to help him.

(If your interest and curiosity have not been roused by this
list of impressive names, I am unworthy of being the editor of ST
NEWS
anymore and I see no other way than to initiate the Ritual
of Desecration on our nice little diskmagazine).

But I spoke of disturbing news in the title of this 'whatever it
is, it is not an editorial'. Well, Richard has decided to stop
studying and this means that he has to join the army at the end
of this summer. He will do his utmost best to evade this
imbecility or at least try to get stationed somewhere in Utrecht.
But when he has to go, he has to go and he will not be able to
write tonsa stuff for ST NEWS anymore. This means that ST NEWS
will slow down a little as I am not capable of writing so many
articles. I simply don't have the time.
One thing is sure though: this is not going to stop ST NEWS. No
way. I cannot let all those faitful readers down. Especially the
Norway Dwellers can breathe again for we will NOT stop. But maybe
you can help us. Just start writing articles right now so at the
end of this summer I will be flooded with disks and have enough
material to create ST NEWS just like nothing happened. Just do
it. There are enough smart people out there.

Okay, enough talk. Enjoy this ST NEWS and watch the future
issues. I have just bought myself a new GLUE chip so I can
finally enjoy all those great border-eliminating demos. (My old
GLUE was a bit weird as it just refused to give up the borders
and just became very irritated and displayed garbage). But this
also means that I can experimenting myself a little and I already
succeeded in putting the ST NEWS logo in the lower border....

Hang on, have fun and read ST NEWS!

Stefan Posthuma

Disclaimer
The text of the articles is identical to the originals like they appeared in old ST NEWS issues. Please take into consideration that the author(s) was (were) a lot younger and less responsible back then. So bad jokes, bad English, youthful arrogance, insults, bravura, over-crediting and tastelessness should be taken with at least a grain of salt. Any contact and/or payment information, as well as deadlines/release dates of any kind should be regarded as outdated. Due to the fact that these pages are not actually contained in an Atari executable here, references to scroll texts, featured demo screens and hidden articles may also be irrelevant.