Spectrum: Interactive Media & Online Developer News

1 December 1997

Reported, written and edited by David Duberman for editorial/ subscription inquiries, send mailto:duberman@dnai.com

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- David Duberman

 

Today's Headlines (details below)

WEBMEISTER

--Rearden Ships Sitecam 1.1 With Anti-Hijacking Features

--Andover Launches FreeCode.com with 300+ Free Web Applications

DEVELOPER'S TOOLBOX

--Frontier Offers Toolkit for Creating Intranet/Internet-Aware Security Applications

INTO THE INFOGROOVE

--CitX, Priority One Launch Intrapay Bill Collect

--Bitstream TrueDoc Adopted as Font Subsystem for JavaOS Environment

--ViewCall Canada Launches Internet TV Service

--U-M Demonstrates Next Generation Parental Empowerment Tools

GRAPHICALLY SPEAKING

--Chequemate C-3D Technology to be Used in Greg Norman 3-D Golf Lessons

WEBSIGHTINGS

--New Scientist to Report on Global Warming

--Global Stock Games Teach Investing

--Online Help for Budding Entrepreneurs

--New Educational Guides Launched by CyberInvest.Com

--Consumers Car Club Migrates to Internet

--Cyber Cycle Takes Marketing Online

--Excite Launches Shopping Search

TECHNOTES

--Motorola Upgrades Cable Data System Features

--ATML Launches Chip for Cheap Multi-User Broadband Services

CONSUMER CHANNEL

--GI Launches $99 3D Sound Card

THE DIALS & LEVERS OF POWER

--Hall Kinion Launches Free Live Web Seminars for Independent Contractors

--Apple, BLaCKSMITH Offer Classes on Creating Dynamic Web Applications

DEALS

--Interplay Inks Distro Agreement with Take Two

GAMES PEOPLE PLAY

--Sierra Releases Editor's Choice Collection CD-ROM

--H+a Launches Puzzle Game + 3D/VRML Title

--Activision Launches Heavy Gear Combat Simulator

--Acclaim Ships Turok: Dinosaur Hunter for PC

--Demo of Ubi Soft's Sub Culture Available

--Sierra Ships Diablo Expansion Pack

--Interplay Launches Redneck Rampage Level-Editor Contest

--Bullfrog Releases Dungeon Keeper Mission Disk

DIGERATI ILLUMINATI

--ThinkQuest Rewards Teens for Education Sites

--Rudnick Founds Oneiric Networks Corporation

HAPPENINGS

--VRML SIG - December

FYI

--About Spectrum

 

WEBMEISTER

Rearden Ships Sitecam 1.1 With Anti-Hijacking Features

Now available from Rearden Technology, a provider of MacOS Webcam software, is SiteCam 1.1, a free upgrade to its Webcam software, now with anti-hijacking features, improved streaming video, improved archiving of QuickTime time-lapse movies, and more.

Available today, SiteCam 1.1 is available free to SiteCam 1.0 users and can be downloaded at <http://www.rearden.com/>.

Any popular Web site that features streaming video runs the risk of having the images and video included in another Web site. Image hijacking consumes site resources and limits without attracting visitors to the rest of the site. SiteCam's anti-hijacking feature provides the options of abolishing the hijacking altogether or deciding exactly how Webcam images will appear on unauthorized Web sites.

SiteCam 1.1 users can respond to hijackers by returning a single Webcam image instead of live streaming video; a single .gif image with a customized message or image; or a completely different, customized Webcam stream designated as "public."

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Andover Launches FreeCode.com with 300+ Free Web Applications

Andover.net, a network of technology-oriented Web sites, last week launched FreeCode < http://www.freecode.com >.

FreeCode archives the source code for over 300 Windows- and Unix-compatible Web applications written in C/C++, Java, Perl, and Visual Basic. All source code available on FreeCode is free for personal and commercial use.

"It's a site designed by programmers for programmers," said Adam Green, Chief Technology Officer of Andover.net and FreeCode's originator.

"Programmers will be able to view online the complete source code for any program listed on FreeCode. They can cut and paste only the portions they need, or can download the entire file."

FreeCode categories include CGI programming, Web hosting tools, HTML authoring, database management, online applications and user interface components.

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DEVELOPER'S TOOLBOX

Frontier Offers Toolkit for Creating Intranet/Internet-Aware Security Applications

Frontier Technologies announces a new toolkit package designed to ease integration of secure messaging, security management, and IP security (IPSEC) with a applications. The e-Lock Toolkit v.2 can be used by developers, integrators, or consultants to incorporate security into email clients, firewalls, remote access solutions, and other applications. The product is based upon standards including Secure Multi-purpose Internet Mail (S/MIME), Public Key Cryptography Standards (PKCS), and IP Security (IPSEC).

The modular architecture supports multiple Secure Protocol Modules (SPM), including RFC 822, MIME, and S/MIME processing capabilities. 'C' API and COM interfacing mechanisms and support for the latest MIME and S/MIME specifications are also supported.

The e-Lock Toolkit v.2, include the Secure Messaging Toolkit, the Client Toolkit, and the VPN Toolkit, will be available by January 1997 at $1,000.

A beta version is now available at http://www.frontiertech.com.

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IN THE INFOGROOVE

CitX, Priority One Launch Intrapay Bill Collect

CitX Corporation of Quakertown PA, and Priority One Electronic Commerce Corp of Akron, PA, last week introduced Intrapay - Bill Collect, their new electronic commerce service that lets businesses collect receivables automatically via the Internet using a proprietary transaction processing system called SETX.

The service does not require any special software or training. The companies claim that businesses using the Intrapay - Bill Collect service can reduce their payment collection cost by over 75 percent while gaining weeks of accelerated cash flow.

The Intrapay - Bill Collect service enables businesses to automatically collect all their customer receivables on the due dates, regardless of the payment method used by the customer. By using a special interactive Web site platform, hosted by CitX, businesses can automatically collect their receivables by charging a customer's credit card or debiting a customer's bank account for the required amount via Electronic Funds Transfer, (EFT).

For more info, contact Bernie Roemmele, CEO, CitX Corporation, 215-538-3510, ext. 16, or mailto:bernie@citx.net

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Bitstream TrueDoc Adopted as Font Subsystem for JavaOS Environment

Sun Microsystems has adopted Bitstream's TrueDoc technology as the font subsystem for its JavaOS 1.1 for network computers (NCs) environment. In addition, Bitstream has supplied Sun with a resident font set for incorporation into the JavaOS environment.

TrueDoc font technology addresses electronic publishing needs including font portability, compact font storage, and (as implemented in JavaOS) scaleable, high-quality text rendering for memory-constrained environments.

The main components used to provide system-level font generation are the Character Shape Player (CSP) and accompanying Portable Font Resources (PFRs). The CSP rasterizes characters on demand from the PFRs at the size and resolution required by the target device (computer screen, television, PDA, printer, etc.). The CSP is small (approximately 60K) and fast; and even provides anti-aliasing of characters for optimal screen legibility on low-resolution devices.

Visit the company at http://www.bitstream.com.

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ViewCall Canada Launches Internet TV Service

ViewCall Canada Inc. last week launched BeyondTV - net connected television, Canada's first personalized Internet television service. The service is currently English-only, with French-language services to be available in Q1 1998.

BeyondTV, available for $29.99 per month, includes Internet access, five personal accounts, and five email addresses. Individuals who already have Internet access can receive the service for $9.90 per month.

ViewCall Canada's consumer electronics partner is WebSurfer, whose hardware solution provides Internet access and server-side applications. Each $450 WebSurfer set-top includes a wireless keyboard, an infrared remote control and a parallel printer port.

Web Site: http://www.beyondtv.net.

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U-M Demonstrates Next Generation Parental Empowerment Tools

The University of Michigan School of Information will demonstrate a variety of new parental empowerment tools and services at the "Internet Online Summit: Focus on Children" this week in Washington, D.C.

The Dec. 1-2 summit, organized by industry, educational, and child advocacy groups, is designed to ensure that steps are taken to make the Internet online experience safe, educational, and entertaining for children. U.S.

veep and known email addict Al Gore is expected to give the keynote address and several congressional leaders are invited.

The PICS Application Incubator project at the School of Information develops new uses for ratings to create child-friendly Internet environments. PICS is the Platform for Internet Content Selection, a set of technical specifications developed by the World Wide Web Consortium to promote interoperability of rating systems and filtering software. The PICS standard increases the range of tools available to parents, teachers, and others that supervise children using the Internet.

"The great promise of PICS is that it can support many rating services, representing diverse viewpoints, unlike the television V-chip which enshrined one particular set of values," said associate professor Paul Resnick. "Beyond the commercial rating services that we've already assisted, we're anxious to help nonprofit, values-oriented organizations, including religious groups, that might want to enlist their members as volunteer raters of Internet materials."

Resnick and his students will also demonstrate innovative uses of rating labels, including annotated and filtered searches. A preview of the demonstrations is available at

http://www.si.umich.edu/~presnick/PICS-incubator.

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GRAPHICALLY SPEAKING

Chequemate C-3D Technology to be Used in Greg Norman 3-D Golf Lessons

Chequemate Technologies, Inc., a subsidiary of Chequemate International, Inc., has reached an agreement in principle with Visual Edge Systems for the use of its C-3D digital imaging system in personalized sports videos, including VES's One-on-One with Greg Norman video golf lessons.

The C-3D digital imaging system can reportedly convert any two-dimensional filmed image on television to a three-dimensional image possessing the same depth and realism as those seen in everyday life.

Visual Edge produces customized, personalized golf lessons with Greg Norman at corporate and charity golf outings by filming a golfer's swing at the event and then produces a 45 minute videotape lesson in which Norman analyzes the execution of various parts of the golfer's swing.

For further info, contact Blaine Harris, chairman/CEO, or Greg Popp, secretary/treasurer, both of Chequemate International, Inc., 801-322-1111.

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WEBSIGHTINGS

New Scientist to Report on Global Warming

Scientists and politicians from around the world are gathered in Kyoto, Japan this week for a summit that could shape the world's climate into the next century. New Scientist, a weekly science and technology magazine, is providing daily bulletins and in-depth analysis on its Web site, New Scientist Planet Science ( http://www.newscientist.com/ ). The URL for the Global Warming Report is http://global.newscientist.com

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Global Stock Games Teach Investing

Investors of all levels can access financial data and news, learn to trade in the stock market, and earn rewards based on their skills at "Global Stock Games" (http://www.stockgames.com). The Web site lets investors test how their investment decisions, in any of 12 stock markets, would fare on a day-to-day basis, without actually investing in the companies. News on company and market developments is provided by Global Stock Games' business news partners, Dow Jones and Reuters.

Participants are encouraged to learn about the stock market through the company research and market data available in "The Global Stock Guide." The guide lets participants consult a financial glossary and a calendar of key events that might influence future stock market activity. After researching a company's background and learning about the latest marketplace activities through the stockgames.com site, visitors can choose to participate in two knowledge-based games, "Trader" and "Best Six," with monetary rewards for successful calls.

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Online Help for Budding Entrepreneurs

The Center for Entrepreneurial Activities (CENA), a New York-based company, has recently launched a massive Internet site for the purpose of assisting budding entrepreneurs in starting and successfully operating their own businesses. The site, at < http://cenacenter.com >, offers tools to help people determine the practicality of their business idea, assists them in developing a business plan, guides them through the steps required to set up the business, and describes the operating systems and procedures required to run efficiently and profitably.

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New Educational Guides Launched by CyberInvest.Com

CyberInvest.Com, an Internet-based investor's guide ( http://www.cyberinvest.com ), has added two free Investor Education guides to its Web site. These guides feature Web sites that offer educational tools for the investor.

The educational tools range from complete "investor education courses," which take the beginning investor through the basic stages of the investing process, to market simulation games which offer a hands-on experience in investing without the outlay of any money. The Investing 101 guide concentrates on tools that address the more elemental aspects of investing.

The Investing 102 guide features sites that offer instruction on more advanced topics, such as technical analysis, short selling and the trading of options, futures and commodities. Both point the user to sites that sponsor conferences, workshops, and seminars, or that have glossaries and dictionaries. Most of the educational material is free.

The educational sites are ranked to help the viewer see at a glance which sites that have the most complete array of educational materials. Jonathan Squire, director of business development, said, "The rankings are not intended to imply that one site is better than another, just which one offers more educational material to the investor."

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Consumers Car Club Migrates to Internet

Consumers Car Club, an online service providing consumers assistance with automotive needs, plans to offer its services nationwide via the Internet at http://www.carclub.com. We took a brief look, and found free dealers' pricing on most '97 and '98 cars, which in itself makes this site worthy of recommendation. But there's lots of other info, too. If you're in the market for a new set of wheels, check this one out.

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Cyber Cycle Takes Marketing Online

Here's an item from Jack Olmsted at Interactive Media: After several unsuccessful attempts to work with online Fitness Web sites in the US, the Comfort "Cyber" Cycle will be marketed during the holidays through the World Fitness site, operated from Neunkirchen, Germany.

The Comfort "Cyber" Cycle is a healthy Web lifestyle product sold exclusively online which provides a platform that individuals can use to exercise and use their computer or Internet appliance while engaged in a variety of interactive applications.

The free market system will prevail on the Internet. US fitness Web site operators demanded 40-50 percent commission on each $399 Cycle sale. The World Fitness rate is 30 cents (US) per sales lead.

According to the National Sporting Goods Association, US consumers will spend a quarter of the year's $3 billion tab for home-fitness equipment during the months of November and December.

Links:

World Fitness: http://www.fitness.com

Comfort "Cyber" Cycle Info/Photo/FAQ: http://www.futuremedia.org/fit2.html

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Excite Launches Shopping Search

Excite, Inc. introduces Excite Shopping Search, powered by Jango, a service on the Excite Shopping Channel that lets consumers search the Web for specific products to buy. Excite claims that, on average, a shopping search replicates the equivalent of a user visiting and searching 15-20 different online stores and product review sites. Excite Shopping Search is available at http://www.excite.com.

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TECHNOTES

Motorola Upgrades Cable Data System Features

Motorola Inc. last week introduced advanced software features and Network Management Applications to its Cable Data system. New features to the Cable Data system include 16 Quadrature Amplitude Modulation (QAM), Internet Protocol (IP) multicast, service levels and an ATM network interface. In addition, a new software platform has been developed to simplify the network management for operators. The IP multicast feature is immediately available while the other features will be available in early 1998.

For further information about the Motorola Multimedia Group and Motorola Inc., visit http://www.mot.com/multimedia.

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ATML Launches Chip for Cheap Multi-User Broadband Services

ATML has announced the availability of Helium, its next ATOM chip. The first, Hydrogen, reportedly took single user broadband devices to a new price point, stimulating the delivery of high-speed Internet access into businesses and homes. The company intends for Helium to do the same for multiple-user endpoint devices, such as Ethernet, ATM (asynchronous transfer mode) or USB (universal serial bus) gateways. ATML also produces a series of software modules for use with the chip.

The Helium chip costs less than $50 in bulk quantities and supports all equipment markets including xDSL, Fiber To The Curb (FTTC), Fiber To The Home (FTTH), electric subscriber line modems for power companies and PC LAN adapters.

The Helium chip, coupled with ATML's software modules, enables the construction of a gateway between the xDSL line and up to six ATM, USB or Ethernet ports (in any combination). In conjunction with ATML's new PPP driver software, the Helium chip provides native bridging, (remote access) routing, and switching functionality.

Said a company spokesperson, "This enables the provision of full ATM services to the desktop. Helium not only guarantees the quality of service functions like bandwidth reservation and traffic prioritization that are essential for multimedia communications, but also makes true multimedia communications solutions affordable for most companies."

The ASIC includes:

· Ethernet controller and physical interface--usually a chip in its own right.

· USB (universal serial bus) interface--again, usually a chip in its own right.

· An ARM 710 microprocessor--this, too, can be purchased as a standalone IC (integrated circuit). The processor runs at 48MHz.

For more information, visit http://www.atminc.com.

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CONSUMER CHANNEL

GI Launches $99 3D Sound Card

Guillemot International (GI) announces a $99 street price for the Maxi Sound Game Theater 64--Dynamic 3D Edition. Compatible with Microsoft's new DirectSound 3D, Game Theater 64 is said to provide "true 3D" audio positioning. The hardware accelerator and on-board DSP handle sound processing on the card.

Features include hardware-based 64-voice wavetable synthesis, real-time effects, programmable surround and dynamic 3D audio on four separate speakers. Using the Maxi Sound Game Theater 64 and DirectSound 3D, the audio API of the DirectX 5.0 suite, up to 48 sounds can be positioned simultaneously and independently in three dimensions on four speakers.

MIDI options include 355 real instruments with 128 General MIDI sounds, 189 variation sounds, 9 drum sets and 1 SFX. Users can expand RAM up to 18 MB with standard RAM SIMMs (60ns) to download more sound banks.

Bundled software includes:

· Cakewalk Express MIDI sequencer

· Midisoft Sound Impression for managing sound files, MIDI files and CD-audio

· Internet Phone for Internet telephony

· Maxi FX, which lets users generate real-time special effects for games and audio applications

· Maxi Bank Downloader, for organizing instrument creations and loading sound banks into memory for use in MIDI games and music

For more information, contact GI at (415) 547-4050, or visit http://www.guillemot.com.

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THE DIALS & LEVERS OF POWER

Hall Kinion Launches Free Live Web Seminars for Independent Contractors

Hall, Kinion and Associates, Inc., a technical staffing company based in Cupertino, Calif., plans to host a series of Free Live Web contractor seminars beginning December 15. The first in the series, "Cashing In on the World of Contracting," will address issues of significant importance to Information Technology contractors and consultants. Registration at http://seminar.hallkinion.com is required. The seminar will be conducted at 1:00 p.m., 4:00 p.m. and 7:00 p.m. PST.

The program will focus on the future of contracting, the hot companies, and new compensation/benefits that are becoming available to IT professionals in today's marketplace. The actual RealAudio presentation will last 35 minutes, followed by a 20- to 30-minute Q & A session during which speakers will respond to questions e-mailed by users.

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Apple, BLaCKSMITH Offer Classes on Creating Dynamic Web Applications

Apple Computer and BLaCKSMITH, Inc., an object-oriented software development and services company, will deliver training programs on Apple's Web development platform, WebObjects. Geared for corporate programmers and analysts, the WebObjects programming course is designed to make it easier for attendees to create dynamic Web applications. The first five-day session is scheduled to be held Jan. 26-30, 1998 at BLaCKSMITH's training facilities in McLean, Va.

Used to power Apple's new online store, WebObjects provides an application server, prebuilt application components, and rapid application assembly tools that let customers bring enterprise solutions online. By providing an open middle-tier application server that provides flexible support for multiple standards, WebObjects reportedly delivers more interactivity to end users and more flexibility to developers.

Get more information by visiting http://www.blacksmith.com or by calling 703-847-8180 or 888.BLK-SMTH.

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DEALS

Interplay Inks Distro Agreement with Take Two

Interplay Productions announced has signed an affiliate partnership distribution deal with Take Two Interactive Software, Inc. for North & South American rights to Jetfighter: Full Burn and Black Dahlia. Both titles are scheduled to ship in January 1998.

An adventure game, Black Dahlia has a rendered 3D game world that includes over 70 locations on two continents contained on a total of eight CD's. The thriller is based on the true story of the Torso Murders set in pre-World War II Los Angeles. Dennis Hopper and Teri Garr co-star.

Jetfighter: Full Burn takes the Jetfighter franchise in a new direction with the use of full-motion video sequences that set the campaign up. The player, in the role of a fighter pilot, will be able to choose which side to play in a conflict that pits the Russian Air Force against the US Navy.

The game will contain multiplayer support and will be a four CD-ROM package.

Visit Take Two's Web site at http://www.take2games.com.

More information on Interplay is available http://www.interplay.com.

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GAMES PEOPLE PLAY

Sierra Releases Editor's Choice Collection CD-ROM

Sierra On-Line has just released its PC Gamer Editor's Choice Collection, a $54.95 package of five Sierra games that have won the magazine's Editor's Choice Award, which signifies a game considered extraordinary in both content and design. The collection features Sierra games in five categories: racing, adventure, strategy, sports, and trivia, including:

· Front Page Sports: Golf, Coeur D' Alene Course

· YOU DON'T KNOW JACK

· Rama - Based on the novel Rama II by science fiction writers Arthur C.

Clarke and Gentry Lee

· CART Racing (formerly IndyCar Racing II)

· Caesar II city-building game

Visit SierraWeb at http://www.sierra.com.

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H+a Launches Puzzle Game + 3D/VRML Title

I. Hoffmann + Associates Inc. ("H+a") has released a new CD-ROM title aimed at gamers who want challenging puzzles presented within a graphically "stunning" environment . Gems of Darkness was created by the designer of the CD-ROM game Jewels of the Oracle.

Features include:

· QuickTime VR interface

· 24 different puzzles with multiple levels of difficulty

· 3 floors with 24 rooms to explore

· graphics based on authentic artifacts and design motifs

· storyline based on historical facts and research

· non-linear game design allows skill level and pace to be set by player

Also new from the company is the all-in-one Mortalus, described as "a role-playing VRML action game a 3D video-enhanced world that combines a compelling storyline with both addictive action sequences and challenging mind games." Whew!

Set in a medieval fantasy environment, Mortalus players embark on a journey into a world of horror and adventure. Their quest? To track down the source of immortality-before the curse of the Dark Brotherhood condemns them to an infinite darkness. Hidden gateways within the game usher players to an exclusive location on the Mortalus Web site, where they complete additional puzzles and gain extra power which is automatically applied to the CD-ROM game, in their struggle against the forces of evil.

H+a's corporate Web site is located at http://www.h-plus-a.com.

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Activision Launches Heavy Gear Combat Simulator

Heavy Gear, Activision's new combat simulation title now in stores, immerses players in a brutal civil war on Terra Nova in the 62nd century.

Piloting an agile battle chassis known as a Gear, gamers must progress through the infantry ranks of the Confederated Northern City-States or the Allied Southern Territories to gain honor, earn more powerful Gears and eradicate their enemies. Super armored combat vehicles loaded with an arsenal of powerful rifles, lasers and grenades, Gears can crouch, side-step and skate with almost-human movements.

Featuring multiplayer gameplay via LAN, modem or Internet, Heavy Gear also challenges gamers to engage in head-to-head combat with other Gear pilots in a Virtual War, a persistent universe of battles on Activision's dedicated Heavy Gear Web server.

Features include support for most 3D game accelerators on the market, plus rolling terrain, force feedback joystick support and 3D stereo sound effects. Even without hardware, Heavy Gear provides texture mapping, including sky and ground surfaces.

Activision's Web site is located at http://www.activision.com.

 

Acclaim Ships Turok: Dinosaur Hunter for PC

One of the best Nintendo 64 games is now available for desktop computers.

Acclaim Entertainment announced that the 3D-accelerated PC version of Turok: Dinosaur Hunter is shipping to retail outlets nationwide. Turok takes gamers through eight levels of a three-dimensional universe, ablaze with flora, fauna and terrain, covering the spectrum from mountains, rugged ridges and sheer cliffs to primeval forests, steaming jungles and ancient ruins.

Turok also supports most 3D cards with the following chipsets: NEC Electronics PowerVR PCX2, 3Dfx Voodoo Graphics and Voodoo Rush, Rendition Verite v2100, v2200 and v1000 (320x240), Nvidia Riva 128, ATI Rage Pro and other chipsets with similar or better performance.

In addition, the game is compatible with all Windows 95-enabled input devices, including: Spacetech SpaceOrb 3D, Mad Katz Panther and Logitech Wingman Warrior & Cyberman II. For an updated list of supported 3D acclerator cards and peripherals, see Acclaim's Web site, http://www.acclaimnation.com.

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Demo of Ubi Soft's Sub Culture Available

A demo of Sub Culture, one of the best-looking real-time 3D PC games we've seen, is available at the Ubi Soft Entertainment Web site at http://www.ubisoft.com/subculture.html. The game involves a series of non-linear action-oriented missions amid a 3D underwater world brimming with underwater cities, exotic aquatic life and danger.

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Sierra Ships Diablo Expansion Pack

Sierra On-Line's HELLFIRE, the only authorized expansion pack to Blizzard Entertainment's hit title Diablo, is now shipping to retail outlets.

HELLFIRE adds to the original Diablo universe enhancements and gameplay features for the single-player mode, including a new character class, additional quests and new dungeons, monsters, weapons, objects, spells and artifacts.

HELLFIRE's quest ushers players into the realms of 29 new monsters, challenging players to find new methods of combat. Players will confront the Lich, an Undead, skeletal sorceror; the Psychorb, a floating, be-tentacled eyeball that fires spells; the Hork Demon, a gnarled monstrosity that attacks viciously in between "horking up" little Hork Spawn demons; and the Grave Digger, a shovel-toting zombie.

There are 30 new magic items and five new spells, including Immolation (fires fireballs in all directions), Lightning Wall (generates a wall of lightning), and Warp (teleports player to the nearest exit in a dungeon), plus a new player character class - The Monk.

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Interplay Launches Redneck Rampage Level-Editor Contest

It's time for all wanna-be rednecks to find out if they cut the mustard, as Interplay Productions announces the official Redneck Rampage Levels Design contest. It's an all out gritty battle of wits and there won't be no dirty fightin' allowed in this contest! Interplay is partnering up with Gamesmania who will be the exclusive host and will judge the final levels.

The contest will run from December 1, 1997 through February 15, 1998.

Gamers can get the level-building editor from Redneck Rampage or download it from the Interplay or Gamesmania Web sites ( http://www.interplay.com or http://www.gamesmania.com, respectively). The first 20 gamers who enter the contest will win a copy of the official Redneck Rampage expansion pack Redneck Rampage: Suckin' Grits on Route 66, which ships to retail stores everywhere December 9, 1997. Gamers should check out the Interplay and Gamesmania sites daily for further contest rules.

Levels will be judged based upon five criteria: Fun/Humorous Factor, Originality, Interactivity, Multi-Player and Single-Player Value.

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Bullfrog Releases Dungeon Keeper Mission Disk

EA-owned Bullfrog Productions last week released The Deeper Dungeons mission disk for Dungeon Keeper, a strategy/action game that casts the player as the "Keeper" in charge of an evil subterranean empire. The $19.95 Deeper Dungeons offers new levels, enhanced graphics and improved artificial intelligence.

The product features 15 new single-player levels and 15 new multiplayer levels. The artificial intelligence is said to make enemy Dungeon Keepers better at finding and hoarding gold, and gives them the strategic ability to sell traps and doors to get extra cash.

Additional information is available at http://www.bullfrog.ea.com or from Electronic Arts Direct Sales at 800-245-4525.

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DIGERATI ILLUMINATI

ThinkQuest Rewards Teens for Education Sites

The brightest stars at last week's ThinkQuest awards ceremony weren't the Hollywood stars, the sports stars or even the politicians presenting the awards, but rather the young stars of Cyberspace being honored for the educational Web sites they created for the international Internet competition.

The winning students and their coaches received scholarships and cash prizes totaling more than $1 million at the second annual awards ceremony, which took place at Loews L'Enfant Plaza Hotel in Washington D.C.

Working in teams over the last year, participants--ranging in age from 12 through 19--combined their creativity and technical skills to build imaginative Web pages to be used as educational tools by students and teachers around the world.

This year's contest attracted more than 1,400 teams with students from 40 different countries. The 105 students who were named finalists were invited to the capital for an all-expenses paid weekend of judging and sightseeing.

The teams included students from places as diverse as Gdansk, Poland; Guntur, India; Alpharetta, Georgia, and Gold Coast, Australia.

A team of students from the Netherlands, India, and the U.S. won the Best of Contest award for Where Earth Meets Sky: The Himalayas, a geographical and cultural journey through one of nature's most magnificent and mysterious wonders. Debangsu Sengupta of Mother's International School in New Delhi, India; Simon Wisselink of Ulenhof College in Zelhem, Netherlands, and Yian Cheng, a Chattahoochee High School student from Alpharetta, GA, each received $25,000 scholarships.

For more details, visit http://www.advanced.org/thinkquest.

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Rudnick Founds Oneiric Networks Corporation

Paul J. Rudnick, former president of SatCom's SATiTV Division, has founded Oneiric Networks Corporation. With his newly assembled team and dedicated financial resources, he will begin development of the Oneiric System 1000, a two-way, satellite-connected settop box with its associated hub broadcast and Internet services.

The company expects the first production run of beta units by spring 1998.

The Oneiric 1000 should be available to the general market later next year.

Rudnick and other members of Oneric Network Corporation can be contacted by phone at (510) 837-5729; fax (510)837-2331; mailto:contact@oneiric.com.

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HAPPENINGS

VRML SIG - December

Tuesday, December 16, Software Forum (http://www.softwareforum.org) presents the VRML SIG at Silicon Graphics in Mountain View, Calif.

(directions below).

Title:

It's Tools Time Again!

Time:

7:00-7:15 PM - SIG Business, Job Announcements, etc.

7:15-8:30 PM - Presentations

December's meeting will begin with an update and presentation from Don Brutzman on the dis-java-vrml working group. His update will be followed with two new tools that are coming onto the market. There will be food for your survival and we will be giving away software for your enjoyment.

Presenters:

Superscape

http://www.superscape.com

James Davis from Superscape will be presenting the company's latest release: 3D Webmaster. The product, which supports VRML 2.0 import and export should provide a solution to those looking to create interactive 3D Web pages or add 3D content to existing 2D sites. James presentation will include a discussion on content creation and an overview of the new product.

Superscape can be reached on 408 969 0500

 

ModelSoft, Inc.

Sean Kung, President of ModelSoft, Inc. will be presenting, their just released product called MESHBASE, which provides content creators an "intelligent" 3D modeling environment. Sean's presentation will include a discussion on modeling options and an overview of the new product.

Modelsoft Inc. can be reached at 650.948.8998

Event Location:

Silicon Graphics Corporate Offices in Mountain View (The big building with all the windows right off the freeway)or 1401 N. Shoreline - Building 20, Mountain View, CA

Directions:

-Take the Shoreline blvd. exit off hwy 101.

-Head East toward the shoreline amphitheater -turn right on Pear Avenue, just past the Silicon Graphics sign and take the first right into the building 20 parking lot -The event is in the Cafe in building 20

To be added to the mailing list or be a presenter, contact Katherine P Bretz: mailto:kbretz@fsc.fujitsu.com

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F.Y.I.

About Spectrum

Spectrum is an independent news service published every Monday for the interactive media professional community by Motion Blur Media. Spectrum covers the tools and technologies used to create interactive multimedia applications and infrastructure for business, education, and entertainment; and the interactive media industry scene. We love to receive interactive media and online development tools and CD-ROMs for review.

Send your interactive multimedia business, product, people, event, or technology news to: duberman@dnai.com. We prefer to receive news by email but if you must, telephone breaking news to 510-549-2894. Send review product and press kits by mail to David Duberman, 1609 Addison St. #6, Berkeley, CA 94703.

If you contact companies or organizations mentioned here, please tell them you saw the news in Spectrum. Thanks.

 

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