Cover
MyMac Magazine 29
September 1997

On September 23, 1997, in Cover, by Mike Gorman

 

Cover by Mike Gorman

MyMac Magazine #29, Sept 1997

 

 

Aaron Light 1.0
FinderPop 1.3b0
Window Tamer 1.0.1
Reviews

On September 5, 1997, in Review, by Adam Karneboge

Aaron Light 1.0

Author: Greg Landweber

Shareware: $5.00

http://greg.math.harvard.edu

Greg Landweber has done it again! I thought that there was nothing else that Greg could possibly do to enhance the look of the Mac OS once System 8 was released. I thought wrong.

Many third party applications retain the old System 7.x look, even when you’re running Mac OS 8. Aaron Light patches the progress bars, floating windows, and dialog box backgrounds. Aaron Light also substitutes the Espy Sans Bold 10 font for Chicago 12.

Installation of Aaron Light is just like installing any system extension. Drop it in your System Folder and restart. If you want to use Espy Sans Bold 10 as your System font, you must to select “Chicago” in your appearance control panel and restart. If you would rather keep “Charcoal” as your System font, as I do, you can keep that selected and Aaron Light won’t activate Espy.

I found absolutely no conflicts with any of my programs. I did experience a problem with Aaron Light in that it would only show the “Lavender” accent color to patch the progress bars on my machine, but this isn’t major because I, like many users, use the “Lavender” accent anyways.

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Mantra II: The Blood of Saric
Game Review

On September 3, 1997, in Game, Review, by Adam Karneboge

Mantra II: The Blood of Saric
Company: Syzygy Cult
Freeware
SyzygyCult@aol.com

 

Mike: The original Mantra is one of my
all-time favorite shareware games for the Macintosh. An involving plot, combined with a good mix of action, adventure, and thinking, made for an engrossing game that was addictive and fun to play. As soon as I read about the sequel, which was released this past summer, I hurried to download it. I couldn’t wait to play it, to experience more of the same type of game play.

Adam: Anyone who has read this column since our review of the original Mantra knows that it is my favorite shareware game of all time, no exceptions made. So you can imagine I was just as ecstatic as Mike was when I found out that the sequel to Mantra, Mantra II: The Blood of Saric had been released. Of course, an immediate download was in order.

Mike: The game was what I expected, and at the same time it was nothing like I thought it would be. After giving Mantra II a try, I was reminded of one of John Travolta’s lines in the summer blockbuster Face/Off: “It’s like looking in a mirror, only… not.” That was my initial thought with Mantra II – it looked the same, it felt the same… but it wasn’t quite the same.

That’s not to say that Mantra II is a bad game. It’s a rather good game, and I enjoyed playing it quite a bit. Perhaps my feelings were based on a faulty memory; after all, it’s been quite awhile since I last took Saric around the land of Zarin in the original game. Maybe the game intentionally has a different feel to it; it’s not necessarily a bad thing to change a little. The most important thing, I guess, is to let Mantra II stand on its own merits, and not hold it side-by-side with its predecessor. When looked at in that light, Mantra II is a pretty enjoyable game.

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The Nemo Memo
My Mac Magazine #29

On September 3, 1997, in Nemo Memo, Opinion, by John Nemerovski

On a gorgeous Arizona summer Tuesday morning, I jumped out of bed as the sun crested nearby Mt. Lemmon. The mighty Macintosh in my office jumped to life with a familiar chime. I checked my email on the local BBS (bulletin board system), and prepared to log into WorldNet, my ISP (Internet Service Provider), for some pre-breakfast research.

Upon launching FreePPP, the “Connect” button was dimmed, with a message that FreePPP was not installed. Huh? Yes, there it was in the correct places, just like yesterday. How about my TCP/IP Control Panel? It didn’t show up at all, and I got another mysterious message saying Open Transport wasn’t even loaded. Not good. Adam Engst’s Internet Starter Kit book doesn’t have a cure for this problem.

I called WorldNet Mac Technical Service: (800) 400-1447, press 4, then press 2. Lorne listened to my symptoms, and then walked me through a double-check that all my Internet connectivity applications, preferences, extensions, and control panels were definitely not being cooperative. He was concerned about some suspicious items scattered throughout my hard drive, all with PPP as part of their names, so I parked them on a Zip disk, just in case. No improvement. I had some breakfast.

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Customer Support

On September 2, 1997, in Opinion, by Mark Marcantonio

Sometimes it can get tough preaching the good news of Apple in the middle of this storm. This is especially true at my summer job, selling computers at Best Buy. I spend everyday doing my part in the war with Wintel, while the advertising department in Cupertino continues to approve ad campaigns that smell worse than Al Bundy’s socks. Why do they put out eight-page ads in the various Mac magazines when four will do? Put the rest of the money into two-page ads in Time, Newsweek, Sports Illustrated, People, etc. Get the word out that Apple has the fastest machines. As military historians know: When outnumbered, increase the speed of the attack, don’t let the opposition rest.

But enough bitching. As I tell my students, “DON’T WHINE, SOLVE!!!”. In the spirit of this attitude, here are three ideas for commercials that will remind everyone that the Mac is still the easiest computer to use.

Customer Support
Scene: Software company, customer service cubes

Frantic, harried, support staff (20+) trying to talk customers through various software conflicts. The camera pans from left to right past each cube. A hallway appears, designating the end of the PC/Windows support. As the camera continues to pan to the left, a cube appears with a sign saying “Macintosh Support”. There, sitting at a desk is a late 20ish female talking to an older male in a blue uniform. “Dad, I always thought you were kidding when you said you had the loneliest job”. The camera angle changes to show the father, actor Gordon Jump in a Maytag repairman’s uniform. “Honey, I never thought your career would have as little stress as mine”.

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Macintosh Babble
My Mac Magazine #29, Sept. ’97

On September 1, 1997, in Macintosh Babble, by Shay Fulton

Where were you when you heard the news? I was sitting in the dining room reading a magazine, having just come in from a refreshing dip in the pool. I was content with life, unknowing that soon my life would forever be changed. No, I’m not talking about the JFK assassination… I’m talking about the Apple-Microsoft deal!

I heard the news through ABC-TV, and was immediately frozen with shock. After the initial bewilderment, I must admit I felt some slight anger and betrayal. How can Apple, the heart of the Macintosh universe, make such a deal with Microsoft, the king of all things bloated? How can Apple betray this loyalty? I mean, Microsoft was the center of all our bad jokes…

Face it, friend, the Apple-Microsoft deal is a good thing, in many ways. Let’s take an look at the deal, from both sides…

Microsoft invested $150 million in Apple, and paid an “undisclosed” amount to have the old “Windows is a Mac Rip-off” scandal settled once and for all. While we might not ever know what this “undisclosed” amount adds up to, we know that Apple got money out of this, and that comes in handy when you are losing millions every quarter. Basically, from Apple’s point of view, the old dispute was settled in a very positive way… Lots of cash.

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Miner Thoughts
My Mac Magazine #29, Sept. ’97

On September 1, 1997, in Miner Thoughts, by Pete Miner

So what’s it gonna be: AppleSoft, MicroApple, SoftApple, MacinSoft, AppleMicro, MicroMaco, SoftMac, SoftIntosh, RottenApple, or KissMyApple? Hard to say but one thing is certain: we, the common folk, will be the last to know. That’s why they call us end users.

Sure, it may be a bit premature to be thinking that a name change for either Steve Jobs’ Apple (I think it’s safe to assume that Steve is calling the shots at Apple no matter what his title), or Billy’s Microsoft is in the making, but is that any more unbelievable than what was just announced in Boston?

By the time you read this, you’ll probably be sick of listening to everyone in the industry tell you what this whole semi-merger of Apple and Microsoft means so I won’t bore you with my analysis of the situation. (Even if I had one!) Instead, I’d like to discuss the two major characters of this soon-to-be highly rated sitcom/soap-opera.

Let me refresh your memory with a few quotes from these two computer giants and how they felt about each other as recently as 1996.

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Deux Ex Machina

On September 1, 1997, in Opinion, by Susan Howerter

“Is there a God?” I asked my Mac.
I’ve asked priests and preachers, rabbis and rabble-rousers, but I’m
still confused. So, apparently, is the computer.

I was putting on a new grammar checker, asking what I always ask.
The answers were more inscrutable than enlightening.
‘Is there a God?’ I typed.

 

*The verb does not agree with the subject. Try ‘are’ instead.*Are? Surely not. It’s been a long time since English One and things
change, but ‘are’? I gave it another shot. The checker wouldn’t budge.

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Changes

On September 1, 1997, in Opinion, by Russ Walkowich

Change. Tim spoke about change and its impact. Boy, have we had some changes thrown at us lately! The Evil Empire is now our ally in the fight for truth, justice and the Macintosh Way… isn’t it?

To Everything (Turn, Turn, Turn)
There is a season (Turn, Turn, Turn)
And a time for every purpose, under Heaven

A time to gain, a time to lose
A time to rend, a time to sew
A time to love, a time to hate
A time for peace, I swear it’s not too late

Words adapted from The Bible, book of Ecclesiastes
Music by Pete Seeger


Change is good, change is nice, change is necessary… but to change from having the “enemy” that Steve Jobs led the good fight against for so many years suddenly become one of the “meaningful partnerships” in the life of Apple is just too much for many people to suddenly deal with. Ok, Microsoft purchased $150 million dollars of non-voting stock and is committed to upgrading Microsoft Office for the Mac at the same rate that the software gets upgraded for Windows. Microsoft Internet Explorer will now become the default browser of the Mac OS although Netscape will still continue to be shipped with the system as part of the package, and all present and future patent disputes between Apple and Microsoft will be settled via a new patent cross-licensing setup. Microsoft has agreed to pay Apple an undisclosed amount to finally settle the issue of infringement claims that have been an ongoing litigation exercise for years. Mr. Jobs stated that he intends to have Apple focus on its two dominant markets: “creative content and education.”

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Do you remember the movie Jaws? Remember the part where Richard Dreyfuss is swimming around a trashed-out old boat at night and he goes underneath the surface of the water to investigate? The suspense was so thick you could cut it with a knife. Right when he is looking at a hole in the bottom of the boat, a mangled head tumbles out and scares the
daylights out of him. Well, when I saw that movie in 1975, I was 11 years old and that one scene scared me so bad I almost wet my pants! That’s how I felt when I first heard about the announcement of the “merger” of Apple and Microsoft. Just looking at this on my computer is amazing to me. Really, who would have ever expected this! This isn’t the only time Apple has done some surprising things!

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Wall Writings
My Mac Magazine #29, Sept. ’97

On September 1, 1997, in Opinion, Wall Writings, by Abraham Amchin

For all of Mike’s readers and fans, don’t despair! Mike just decided to take the time off from this issue so that he can move his entire existence to his new residence at a small Iowa college where he starts his first semester this month.

Mike plans on continuing to write for My Mac Magazine as soon as he gets settled and can find a Mac fraternity on the all PC campus. Don’t forget to send Mike an e-mail message and wish him the best.

 

In the meantime, we would like to reprint a special, not often seen, letter/column Mike wrote for a “My Mac Presents” issue. My Mac Presents #2 was a “Best Of Wall Writings”, and Mike wrote the following forward to it.

(July 1996)
Tim’s asked me to write down a few thoughts for inclusion in this “special edition,” which might be a mistake, since I rarely have just a few thoughts and am more often than not rather long-winded. So, I best just jump right into it and get started.

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Game Guys
Mantra II

On September 1, 1997, in Game, Review, by Mike Wallinga

Mike: The original Mantra is one of my
all-time favorite shareware games for the Macintosh. An involving plot, combined with a good mix of action, adventure, and thinking, made for an engrossing game that was addictive and fun to play. As soon as I read about the sequel, which was released this past summer, I hurried to download it. I couldn’t wait to play it, to experience more of the same type of game play.

Adam: Anyone who has read this column since our review of the original Mantra knows that it is my favorite shareware game of all time, no exceptions made. So you can imagine I was just as ecstatic as Mike was when I found out that the sequel to Mantra, Mantra II: The Blood of Saric had been released. Of course, an immediate download was in order.

Mike: The game was what I expected, and at the same time it was nothing like I thought it would be. After giving Mantra II a try, I was reminded of one of John Travolta’s lines in the summer blockbuster Face/Off: “It’s like looking in a mirror, only… not.” That was my initial thought with Mantra II – it looked the same, it felt the same… but it wasn’t quite the same.

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Bits and Pieces
My Mac Magazine #29, Sept. ’97

On September 1, 1997, in Bits and Pieces, by Grant Cassiday

What is the press up to? Find out every month here in Bits & Pieces!

YOU’VE HEARD ABOUT THE DEAL. WHAT ABOUT THE COVERAGE?
TIME Magazine was all over the story of the Apple/Microsoft alliance in its August 18th issue. This was not because of TIME’s vision of Apple’s importance in American life. It wasn’t even because of the important support that Macs enjoy within the publishing community. It had a lot more to do with some promising behind-the-scenes negotiating done by Mr. Jobs. Behind-the-scenes is a relative term here, of course, because the Jobs/TIME deal was right on the cover of TIME, neatly wrapped up in the word “Exclusive.”

We all know Apple has taken a beating in the press for the last several years. The market share has dwindled, the stock has dropped, and the marketing agency has been fired. What Apple needs more than anything is good press, wide exposure, and a vision of a rosy future. What better way to serve this purpose than an artfully composed black and white photo of Apple’s new leader on the cover of America’s most well known magazine adorned with the words “The World’s a Better Place”? Advertising can’t buy that.

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Barbara @ Macworld Expo!

On September 1, 1997, in Features, by Barbara Bell

It’s here! It’s here! It’s gone! Macworld Expo finally arrived! I love to attend just to get out of the stifling Windoze atmosphere. Macworld is overwhelming and exhilarating, all at the same time!

I tried to start off my day with the opening keynote addresses. I wanted to find out if Steve Jobs would be the next CEO! Unfortunately, you’re considered not worthy to attend if you pay only for exhibits. I monitored the news to hear the announcements. Here’s what I saw and what you already know: Microsoft will purchase $150,000,000 worth of non-voting (yeah, right) Apple stock. Steve Jobs is one of four new members on the Apple Board of Directors. Microsoft will also help develop Apple software. (I noted, during the newscast, that applause was very lackluster.)

I myself am disappointed. Microsoft copies everyone’s software, including the Macintosh Operating System, and now Apple is just turning over and letting Microsoft walk all over it. Very discouraging. Fortunately, Macworld itself was great, if a little subdued.

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Starting Line
My Mac Magazine #29, Sept. ’97

On September 1, 1997, in The Starting Line, by Barbara Bell

Dear Readers:

Well, Macworld Expo has come and gone. Boy, did Steve Jobs have some interesting news for us this time! I’m almost glad I couldn’t go to his opening address. I probably would have started screaming! Well, I won’t belabor that whole issue here. I’m sure it’s being adequately covered elsewhere in our little ezine! ;­)

For all you free speech fanatics (of which I am proud to say I’m one), I found a wonderful site called Peacefire (www.peacefire.org). What brought this site to my attention was something I read concerning blocking software programs. Now, don’t get me wrong! I think blocking software has its place. I would much rather using blocking software than have Congress tell me what I can and cannot browse on the Web. No, the problem is blocking software also practices its own brand of censorship. If your interest is free speech, I suggest you visit the site-it’s a real eye opener. When you are finished there, visit the Citizen’s Internet Empowerment Coalition at www.ciec.org. They were a big help in proving the Communications Decency Act was unconstitutional.

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MagicalKeys 1.3.2
NeatNik 1.0.2
WindowStacker 1.0
Review

On September 1, 1997, in Review, by Fenton Manavesh Jones

MagicalKeys 1.3.2
Author: Michel Mariani
Freeware
http://www.asi.fr/~mmariani/soft/soft.html

Does your Apple Menu go way off the bottom of the screen? Do your hierarchal windows resemble the Tower of Babel? Does your launcher palette have so many buttons it looks like an airplane console? Do you wish you could find an instant way to launch your favorite program?
If the answer is yes, then continue reading.

MagicalKeys manages to add yet another way to launch your favorite files. It can only do four, but it does them in the most unique and easy-to-use way. You just add them in the control panel and choose one of the keys: Control, Option, Shift or Command for each. Then just triple-click the key, anytime, anywhere. It’s fast, you don’t need to reach for the mouse; but you do have to remember which is which. Leave MagicalKeys as one of the four choices, for reference, until you get them down. It only uses 17K of System memory.

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My Turn
My Mac Magazine #29, Sept. ’97

On September 1, 1997, in My Turn by Tim Robertson, by Tim Robertson

“Nothing ever stays the same, it’s always gonna change.”

One of my favorite songs of all time is from Tesla’s “Mechanical Resonance” album. It’s called “Changes.” That song is appropriate, I think, for those of us in the Macintosh community.

Changes. Get ready, folks, a new day is dawning. Like it or not.

I am reminded of Darth Vader clenching his fist and saying “You do not know the POWER of the Dark Side! Join me, and we will rule the galaxy…” to Luke Skywalker. Well, in the mythology of George Lucas, Luke resisted and eventually the good guys won. Real life, however, is rarely that simple. And when Steve Jobs welcomed Dar…, I mean BILL Gates at Macworld Boston, everything changed. Just like that.

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North American Birds Sight & Sound
Review

On September 1, 1997, in Review, by Tim Robertson

North American Birds Sight & Sound
CD-ROM
Company: NatureWare
Estimated Price: $25.00

http://www.natureware.com

 

Let me first start off by saying that I am
not a bird watcher. Never have been, at
any rate. But when I received NatureWare’s
Mac & Windows CD-ROM for review, I found myself engrossed. Not only by the way this programs works, but by the high quality of the presentation found therein.

 

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Tech Tips
My Mac Magazine #29, Sept. ’97

On September 1, 1997, in Tech Tips, by Abraham Amchin

This month Tech Tips covers an apparently hot topic (for at least 1.2 million of us according to Apple) which is Mac OS 8. I won’t delve into extension conflicts and what version of what program you may or may not need, but I do hope to provide several basic tips and suggestion to make your upgrade as smooth as possible. Also, thanks to reader John Kessler for acknowledging I was not the only one to come across psychotic mice (see Real World Experience, issue 28).

If you have read much on the Internet on how people are installing the new System, you’ve probably seen that many are performing a “clean install” and that may be your first question (what is a clean install?). To sum it up, a clean install will leave your existing System Folder where it is and create a new system folder.

Is this good or bad? Well, the bad part is that you must now move all of your old preferences, fonts, non-Apple control panels and extensions to this new system folder. Don’t forget about other items in the old system folder like:

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Snap!

On September 1, 1997, in Opinion, by Brian Harniman

If you surf the Web at all, you probably know about C-Net. With over 1,400,000 registered users on eleven Websites, it’s the recognized leader in content delivery about everything related to Web. Maybe you’ve seen their TV programs on the Sci-Fi channel or USA Network. Come on, any Sofie Formica fans out there?

If you haven’t hit any of the C-Net family of sites, you are missing a great information source that can help you out with questions about games, site design, multimedia, or whatever else you are looking for. C-Net also boasts search.com, probably the best metasearch tool around. And if you need shareware, the size and speed of Shareware.com will get you to what you need with time to spare.

C-Net has been in the news lately, and not just for its award-winning design or editorial coverage. On Monday, June 23rd, C-Net launched the prototype for Snap! Online. CEO Halsey Minor touts Snap! as a Web-based, platform-independent online service. Translation: If you have a computer with Web access and a CD-ROM drive, you can get Snap! With C-Net’s expertise in computer tutorials, it will have thousands of newbies jacking in and surfing it up. Probably the best part about this service is the price. Snap! is free for the user. You still have to pay to connect to the Net, but if you’re reading this, you already do that.

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