"I am not paranoid...WHO SAID I WAS?!"
Gracie, "The Nanny"
AN INTERVIEW WITH STUART COATES
by Richard Karsmakers
"Phoenix Rising" by Annihilator (off "Set the World on Fire") is
actually one of the most crap songs I've ever heard this band
perform. And the problem is that, actually, it became the single
and all. It's a cliché rock ballad if ever I heard one.
This has nothing to do with Stuart Coates, though this
particular ST programmer might conceivably like that song.
Who, then, is Stuart Coates?
Stuart Coates is a rather well-known PD/shareware programmer who
has roamed on the Atari scene for a while and whose latest
product is "Revenge Doc Displayer" version 3.20. This is quite an
excellent replacement module for your system's "VIEW AS TEXT"
routine for displaying text files.
Can you give us a short biography of your life, education,
computers, work and social status?
Stuart: I was born 18th December 1970 in Leicester, England.
Grew up in little village called Kibworth just outside Leicester.
I went to the local village school until I was 14 and then to a
reasonably local comprehensive school to do my 'O' and 'A' Level
exams. Didn't attend lessons much as I prefered to just play
about on the Acorn computer network that they had there. Here I
really learned how to code, in BASIC and 6502 machine code
although I'd done a little Z80 on my Spectrum at home. I left
school and started work as a mainframe computer operator at an
international company in Leicester. In 1991 I got pissed off
working for them and got a job in Chelmsford working for a small
(well, it was then) software house writing insurance applications
using relational databases - I do most of the R&D for the company
which means I get to play with the latest hardware and software.
So that's where I am today - working my balls off in sunny
Chelmsford. I'm single and live alone!
Can you give us a short description of the surroundings where
you live? Its nightlife, its people?
Stuart: Chelmsford, well, there's not much to say...it's a bit
of a dull town, not much of a lot of [a] nightlife but I suppose
the people aren't that bad.
Can you give us a description of your home, most specifically
the room where you do your work or another room that you perhaps
think deserves to be known better?
Stuart: I live in a two bedroom flat on the outskirts of the
town. Most of my programming is done in the lounge where I have
everything that I need... ST, PC, Modem, TVs, Video, Hi-Fi,
Phones...what more could a person ask for?
What is (are) your worst habit(s)?
Stuart: Making an absolute mess...papers flying everywhere
during the really heavy coding sessions.
If I were ever to visit you, where would you take me for a night
Stuart: Well, I think we'd have to go out for a real killer of a
curry washed down with a couple of buckets of lager - classy eh?
What is your local ST/TT/Falcon scene like?
Stuart: Well, I could describe it as 'non-existent' but that
would be too kind... I even have trouble getting hold of ST mags
in the local newsagent's.
What programs in your AUTO folder or ACC directory would you
rather not be without, and why?
Stuart: "Warp 9" - GEM/TOS is just too slow when it comes to
screen output, I find that "Warp 9" does me just fine despite
better accelerators being available; "UIS III" - probably the
most useful util that I've ever bought; "16MHz switcher" -
written by myself to kick in my 16MHz accelerator card; "Harlekin
3" - some very useful utils although it's a little hungry on
system resources. I like this basically because it's always
there when I need it; "DC Rightcall" - just to call up "UIS" to
do file copying within applications; "Teradesk" - can't stand GEM
desktop (even on TOS 2.06) and this is probably the best
replacement that I've used.
What is the latest program you've done? What was the first
program you ever wrote?
Stuart: The latest is the "Revenge Doc Displayer" version 3.20.
My first was "...Hello World..."...
What program(s) can we expect from you in the near future?
Stuart: It depends on the inspirations that I get. I'm
currently involved in an easy-to-use shell for Internet access
software on the ST and I hope to be extending this. I'm not sure
what the future of the ST is but I think that I'll stick with it
for a while.
Which book have you read recently that made most of an
impression on you?
Stuart: I don't read many books but I did like "The Cuckoo's
Egg" by Clifford Stoll; it's a true story about his task in
tracking a bunch of international hackers.
What's your favourite season, and why?
Stuart: Winter...when I get snowed in the house and sit down to
do some heavy weight coding.
What's your favourite music for flipping out and/or coding?
Stuart: Jimi Hendrix "Electric Ladyland" (most of the RDD3 was
written listening to this CD), and almost any Clapton album.
What computer hardware do you have?
Stuart: Atari 520 STe (16Mhz accelerator, 4 Mb RAM, TOS 2.06, US
version), 48 Mb Hard Disk (Seagate 157N), Atari SM124 Monitor;
Acer 1200 - i486DX/25, 8 Mb RAM, 140 Mb & 380 Mb Hard Disk, CD-
ROM, Soundblaster, ZyXEL U-1496E+ Modem, Star LC24-10 Printer;
Atari Jaguar (at last Atari have done something right!).
What computer tools do you use for your work?
Stuart: At home Lattice C 5.60 and Devpac 3.10; at work Windows
NT 3.5, UNIX (various flavours), Visual BASIC, Visual C++, C,
Ingres Windows/4GL, Ingres ABF, Embedded SQL/C...and just about
anything they throw at me.
What is the computer game you play most at the moment? What's
your all-time fave game?
Stuart: Well, they're one and the same..."Tempest 2000" - this
baby really kicks ass. Jeff Minter has made the game that will
sell the Jag.
What is the film you've been to recently that made most of an
impression on you?
Stuart: I tend not to watch serious films, just the comedy
ones...I rather liked "Wayne's World" I and II - very silly but
Do you remember a film that struck you as being especially crap,
a film you was tempted to get a refund at the cinema for?
Stuart: Can't recall one...I normally have a very good idea of
what a film is gonna be like before I fork out hard cash to go
and see it.
Who do you think is the most stunningly beautiful female to roam
Stuart: Tia Carrere (in both "Wayne's World" films, ED.) or
Do you play any musical instruments?
Stuart: The nearest that I get to music is putting a new CD into
You are connected to the Internet. What would you advise other
Internet users to check out without further ado, i.e. what would
you have parted with your right arm for to have someone reveal to
you when you started out?
Stuart: Usenet news - such a wide diversity of subjects and
people - you just have to experience it to realize how the net is
changing the world.
What is to you *the* music release of 1993 or 1994?
Stuart: Well, 1994, it must be "Bat Out Of Hell 2" by Meat Loaf;
some real rocking tracks on this disc.
What is your favourite holiday destination, and why?
Stuart: Devon in England, it's just so laid-back there I can
just get away from it all, chill out and have a few beers.
Is there something you see everybody likes but you that you
loathe most intensely?
Stuart: Nightclubs...just so intimidating, the music is so loud
you just can't chat to anyone.
What do you remember as the worst ever moment in your life?
Stuart: Leaving home for the first time...really got homesick
for the first week but I soon settled down.
Most cliché question of the interview (possibly): What's your
favourite food? And favourite drink?
Stuart: Favourite food is Chili or Pizza, favourite drinks are
Pepsi Max, Diet Coke and Diet Pepsi.
What is your favourite fantasy?
Stuart: A very long night of passion with the twins from
"Neighbours". Maybe it'd kill me...but hey, what a way to go!!
OK. The words to react to section. Please react to...
Stuart: Just can't see the point of religous wars, maybe it's
just because I've got no religous beliefs at all.
The ozone layer.
Stuart: What ozone layer?
Stuart: If you use a program then you should buy it. I believe
that some programs are way overpriced which tends to encourage
piracy. I just get sick of people saying that the software
industry loses millions every year due to piracy, well if you
look at it this way: If I have a bit of pirated software, would I
have purchased it if I hadn't received a pirated copy...if the
answer is 'no' then how has the industry lost?
Stuart: The best thing that has ever happened to TV (?!?!, ED.).
Stuart: (He skipped this word, but I thought I'd leave it in for
you to know that I asked; "View II" is probably the major
commercial contender for "Revenge Doc Displayer", ED.).
Stuart: Not bad but a little over-hyped.
Stuart: Hey parents, lock up your kids...
Stuart: Maybe Deep Thought had a rounding error...?
Stuart: I have no beliefs at all...God is something I say after
Stuart: Theoretically a great idea but fundimentally floored as
it relies on users to be honest and register.
Stuart: The only mag really worth reading!
Well, Stu, thanks for your time and the compliment!
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.