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_//\\________________________________________________________________________
_\\__T_A_T_I_C___L_I_N_E______________________________________ January, 2000
__\\_________________________________________________________________________
\\//__ Monthly Scene E-Zine ________________________________ 175 Subscribers
_____________________________________________________________________________


--=--=--
--=--=------=--=------=--=----
  Table Of Contents
----=--=------=--=------=--=--
     Opening:
           Message From the Editor
           Letters From Our Readers
     Features:
        Tryhuk's Top Ten Trax of 2000
        Coplan's Top Nine Trax of 2000
        Intros in 2000
        Tracking Tool Index -- The Trackers
     Columns:
        Music:
           The Listener -- Music from Hunz, Warder and Distance
        Demo:
           Screen Lit Vertigo -- In Cyber, Love creation MAX & Slavery
        General:
           Editorial -- What are we in for?
           Scene Sense -- Perhaps it is Time for a Change
           Link List -- Get Somewhere in the Scene (updated)
        Closing:
           Credits

--=--=--
--=--=------=--=------=--=----
  Message From the Editor
----=--=------=--=------=--=--
  As we do every January, we're doing a year-end review of the previous
  year.  This year, it's bigger and better than ever before.  We got lots
  of features this month, a "best of" accounts for the year 2000, and the
  beginning of my quest for the best tracking tools.  As a result of all
  the work we put into this issue, we are running very lean on the regular
  columns this month.  I don't think you'll be at a loss, however, because
  you'll have twice as many tunes and demos to catch up on.  That's a lot
  of stuff to download and check out.

  Next month, all our regular columns will return.  This month, you got
  our second largest issue of all time...all 1475 lines of it.

  Enjoy!

                --Coplan


--=--=--
--=--=------=--=------=--=----
  Letters From Our Readers
----=--=------=--=------=--=--

  -=- Letter from Mister X -=-
  Hello Coplan,

     Great work as always with the latest version of Static Line.  I am
  writing to let you know that I have been archiving all of the Static
  Line issues, and they are available in the Resource area of MODPlug
  Central.  They are all searchable and indexed (along with the other
  resources such as Trax Weekly, Demonews, and various articles) so that
  your readers can find an issue easily if they know what they are looking
  for.

     I would also like to request, if possible, a link from the Static
  Line Link List.  Whichever section you feel is most appropriate would be
  fine, but I think that MODPlug Central fits best into the "portal"
  section, since the site offers so much information and other services to
  its visitors.

     Thanks for your consideration, and keep up the great work with Static
  Line!

                --Mister X
                  MODPlug Central
                     http://www.modplug.com/modplug
                  MPC Resources
                     http://www.castlex.com/mods


  -=> Reply from Coplan:
  As always, it's good to hear from our readers.  It's very nice indeed
  that we have fans archiving our magazine.  I have been to MPC Resources,
  and if you do a search for Static Line -- sure enough, you find all our
  issues.  I have also taken the liberty to add the MPC Resources link
  under the Portals section of our link list, as requested.

                --Coplan


--=--=--
--=--=------=--=------=--=----
  Coplan's Top Nine Trax of 2000
  By:  Coplan
----=--=------=--=------=--=--
     It's inevitable, a year ends, and you gotta review the entire year.
  I've done it every year since I've been writing for a scene magazine,
  and this isn't an exception.  It's been a bad year for me, review wise.
  I have had a lot happen to me this year, and I missed a lot of months.
  On top of that, I lost most of my mods a few weeks ago due to a major
  crash.  So, the songs in this column are a result of what I remembered.
  Rather, what I could remember to download.  Unfortunately, I was only
  able to come up with the top nine tunes of 2000.  That's fine, 'cause
  between myself and Tryhuk, you still got 18 songs to look up.

     Call me a cheater, because I have some songs from the Audiophonik CD.
  But I feel that there are a few songs worth mentioning from there.  If you don't have the CD, I highly recommend
  grabbing it from http://www.imphobia.org.  With exception of the
  Audiophonik tracks, all other songs will be available at the following
  address:

     ftp.scenespot.org/static_line/suppliment/2k_countdown/

  Well, here goes, in no particular order:


  "The Approach" by Nightbeat (TheApproach.zip)
     A traditional celtic/scottish style song, one that is remarkably well
  done.  This song became my introduction to Nightbeat, a very good
  tracker.  I have since downloaded many of his tunes, but this is my
  favorite so far.  If you have any interest in this type of music, you'll
  definately want to grab it.  For everyone else, it's worth a download
  regardless.  It's got a very funky feel to it, but it's still true to
  form.

  "Hymn" by Wayfinder and Phace (az-01.zip)
     Back when I reviewed this song in issue #21, I made the mistake of
  excluding Phace's name from the credits.  I feel extremely bad for that
  mistake, as this is one of my favorite trance tunes of all time, let
  alone the year 2000.  This is one song I have a lot of admiration for,
  because Wayfinder and Phace composed the main riffs outside of Impulse
  Tracker, and then inserted them into Impulse Tracker as samples of their
  own.  The song has a very smooth and complete feel for that reason.  If
  you're into trance, there is a lot to be found on the Azure website:
  http://www.azure-music.com

  "Emery" by El Blanco (emery.zip)
     Once again, El Blanco has to be one of my favorite trackers.  He does
  a wide range of styles, so there's something out there for everyone.
  He's on my list again this year (he had three songs last year).  Emery
  is what one would consider "oldskool style".  I admire this song for
  it's complex riffs and base and leads.  Okay, so the song is very
  complex.  To kick it off, it's got some lyrics from Speak and Spell
  (remember that orange little toy from E.T.?).  You gotta grab this song
  and crank it up load.  This is a loud listening song.

  "Spectral Vision" by Rez (Audiophonik CD -- no download)
     I would say that this song is somewhat of a cross between a chip tune
  and trance.  I wish I had the sample data from this song, because the
  samples sound pretty damn amazing.  Yes, I said chips, but they don't
  sound quite like traditional chips.  They sound deeper than that -- much
  more dynamic.  The tune is also very dynamic, ever changing, every
  pulling you into the song.  You get immersed in the song, and you don't
  want to leave.  I love this tune.

  "Autoguest" by Simak Wordmacro (si_auto.zip)
     Robert Miles (Commercial artist, most know for his song "Children")
  fans will like this tune.  In fact, I think I heard Simak say one day
  that Mr. Miles was his inspiration.  Those who aren't familiar with
  Robert Miles, let me tell you what you're in for:  A house tune with
  lots of percussion and piano.  The piano is a nice touch to this song.
  It might seem repetative at times, but it carries a melody that gets
  carried through the synth-strings and so on.  Definately a song you want
  to dance to.

  "Third Millenium" by Lluvia (Audiophonik CD -- no download)
     I'll be honest, I have never heard anything else by Lluvia -- she's
  pretty oldskool -- and I'm sorry that I have yet to download any of her
  music.  I don't know what style you would call this song, but it's got a
  jungle or DnB feel to it.  The way she layers each sample over top of
  each other is quite amazing.  I'm very impressed with the fact that it
  doesn't sound like a pile of riffs.  It is a complete song, and another
  reason to grab the Audiophonik CD.

  "Fantasy" by Tawan (az-03.zip)
     Another good trance tune from the arms of Azure.  Tawan isn't an
  official member of Azure, but it seems as though he should be:  This
  song is incredible.  The percussion in this song is nothing to write
  home about, but the melodic backup and leads are all you need to enjoy
  this song.  Definately worth a download.

  "Song & Dance" by El Blanco (sngdnc.zip)
     The second El Blanco tune this year.  This song also has somewhat of
  an oldskool feel, but it is much more contemporary than emery.  My
  favorite part of this song has got to be the percussion -- especially
  the kettle drum.  Of course, I have a slight biased to kettle drums
  anyhow.  This is one of those songs that just sort of builds.  Every
  other pattern, or so, a new instrument is introduced, and the song gets
  more and more complex as you go on.  There are some rather interesting
  transitions too, like when the piano enters the song.  The only fault I
  find with the song is that it ends just when it's getting good, a few
  patterns after the piano enters.  But, it is a very good ending, one
  that would Make David Bowie proud (he likes to end songs this way as
  well).

  "Purple Coulded Planetoid" by PsiTron (npk-pclp.zip)
     Orchestral techno, that's the best way I can describe this tune.
  It's a nice little mix between the two styles, and I really like the way
  it came out.  PsiTron really does like his chips though, and you get a
  lot of chips in this song.  This is not a chip tune though.  It is a
  somewhat fast paced song with lots of things happening, at least in the
  first part.  The second part has a bit of a jazz influence, and adds a
  nice little edge to the song.


  So, what are you waiting for?  Go download some tunes that you missed in
  the year 2000.  You got 12 months before I hit you with another list.

                --Coplan


--=--=--
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  Tryhuk's Top Ten Trax of 2000
  By:  Tryhuk
----=--=------=--=------=--=--

     There's no real order of the top ten, because it's too hard to choose
  the best ten tracks and it's impossible to sort them and tell which one
  is better. I rather tried to make a wide selection of styles and I tried
  to choose tracks I really believe that are worth downloading, even on
  slow modems that some of us still use. So here it goes:

  Title: Ubik
  Author: Alpha conspiracy
  Comment: Interesting electronic track influenced by garage group sound.
           I like how the track sounds, it's quite unique in the scene.
           Detailed review in Static line #21.

  Title: Last train
  Author: Smash
  Comment: Mix of jazz an triphop with extremely good work with mood.
           Detailed review in Demojournal #82. Released as tdr#150.

  Title: Come visit my life
  Author: Stereoman
  Comment: lovely ambient structures, repetitive melodies with lovely
           trumpets, great drumlines and awesome atmosphere. With
           this track esem turned back to his older music. Tokyo164
           release.

  Title: No love out there
  Author: Prymer
  Comment: Lovely atmospheric triphop with nice guitars. Detailed review in
           Demojournal #74. TDR#147 release.

  Title: Bulentoi
  Author: Lime
  Comment: Hypnotic mixture of minimalistic electronic and jazz/funk.
           Chords that stuck in your head. Reviewed in Static Line 24.
           Released as Milk #84.

  Title:  Room for one
  Author:  twilton
  Comment:  Again a well made electronic track, full of little small details
            that make it sound complete. I also like tat it sounds like
            having ideas from more people. Noise release.

  Title: Autumn in the budapest (giants steps musicdisk)
  Author: carlos
  Comment: Without question is carlos one of the best scene musicians
           and his newest musicdisk was a prove. Autumn in the budapest
           is a remix of streets of budapest, his older track. It's amazing
           how has the track changed. Reviewed in SL21, j'ecoute release #6.

  Title: Lifetime
  Author: El mobo & plug-in
  Comment: Great guitars in lovely song. You can hear there that they know
           what they're doing - it's not like many other track that contain
           minutes of repeated or boring music to get a bigger length.
           Reviewed in sl26. LTP mp3 music competition entry.

  Title: no fucking fishing for compliments (fishbone mix)
  Author: falcon
  Comment: minimalistic and gentle like a first love. Great track.
           tokyo dawn records release #100 (repertoire2)

  Title: Sarah's song
  Author: Hunz
  Comment: progressive electronica meets ambient music and pop,
           underdrawn by great vocals. I always liked his music.
           Guest release for hellven.


--=--=--
--=--=------=--=------=--=----
  Intros in 2000
  By:  Gekko
----=--=------=--=------=--=--

     When the new year comes it is typical to think things over, so why
  not be typical. In this intro review column I do not only plan to write
  about the latest and best releases. I would also like to review
  'oldies', great works from years ago which might not be known today, and
  works of beginners, too. I think that these are relevant to the intro
  column because intros used to be more important on the scene than they
  are today and "newborn sceners" tend to start their career with intros
  instead of demos. Comments and ideas about this column are welcome.
  Email me also if you have tips for reviews.

     As the new year is here it is also time to have a quick look at what
  has been there in the previous one. There were generally less intros
  than in the years before. The quality was average but there were a small
  number of outstanding ones.

     Some general trends are visible about intros in 2000. In the question
  of platform, DOS eventually disappeared, almost every piece is made for
  Windows, and even a few ones for Linux. Usage of 3d acceleration
  appeared and rapidly became common; this went on about a year or two
  after the same happened with demos but here the process was much faster.
  The trend to use complex operating systems such as Windows brings that
  size optimizing (to make the program smaller) became less important in
  programming. By now, Assembly language is very rarely used, demo coders
  move on to C, C++ or Java. Basically no more size optimizing
  competitions (eg. 256-byte intro coding) were held in 2000. Very few
  parties had 4k intro competitions, this genre is very close to
  disappear. This process also means that making intros, that is,
  squeezing a demo into a given size limitation, is becoming more and more
  pointless.

     Despite all these factors, there were some very good intros in 2000.
  This was the year that demoscene programmers discovered the
  possibilities of using a complex OS such as Windows. This means easy
  access to sound and video hardware, including 3d acceleration, usage
  built-in fonts to display texts, and so on. These do lead to smaller
  programs, that is, more can be put into an intro. Apart from this it is
  always true that computers become faster and faster. One can create more
  impressing effects on PCs nowadays than what was possible on those
  computers that were common a few years before.

     Only the technical aspects were covered so far, but it is more
  important what we can see and hear. The major trend was minimalism: only
  a few colors are used, if 3d objects are shown, they are drawn with flat
  shading (they appear flat and unrounded). The point in minimalism is
  that a few colors can fit each other better than many, so that the
  result might be more pleasing to the eye. Besides, minimalism is healthy
  for intros: minimalist graphics and effects are simpler, so they take up
  fewer bytes... In this style tunes of IDM genre (Intelligent Dance
  Music) were the most common. IDM in music means something like
  minimalism in graphics - they fit each other. Unfortunately minimalist
  intros were often just a bunch of boring effects thrown together, eg.
  spheres and cubes flying; without any meaning or originality. Even
  though there were a few very good minimalist intros, too. The groups
  creating intros in this style are Threestate, Fuzzion, Replay, Unik,
  Fresh and Array. Realtime raytracing intros (3d scenes with true shadows
  and reflections) also became widespread. Unfortunately it often means
  just spheres jumping up and down. By now some intros and demos showed
  that realtime raytracing can even look good. It was back in 1997 that
  TBL created their intros 'Jizz' and 'Stash'; colorful intros with
  psychedelic trance music. These were very influential on the scene. Many
  people started to copy their style instead of going on their own way.
  These Stash clones were just faint shadows of the originals, both
  technically and in style. This trend did exist even in 2000.

     I made a top 5 of 64k intros released in 2000. I tried not to be
  partial, but this is just a subjective list of mine. If you have not
  seen intros of 2000, watching this five can give you an overview of what
  was there. These are not the typical but the best ones, so for example
  there is no Stash-wannabe among them. These intros can be downloaded
  from scene.org, just find the directory of the party and the
  competition. To make your life easier:

     ftp://ftp.scene.org/pub/parties/2000/


  Heaven Seven by Exceed; #1 at Mekka 2000
     Original and spectacular one with great design and graphics. The
  code is also impressive, it has an accurate and fast raytracer. The tune
  is fine, but the bass is quite shocking on huge speakers... Wonderful
  scenes: female figure running in light, a small temple, flight above a
  sea, fractal object made up of little spheres, and so on. You can
  discover new details every time you watch it.

  Lost Vegas by Threestate; #3 at Ambience 2000
     A great intro, if you can take their egoism as a joke. The music is a
  slow and noisy tune of IDM style. The intro is made up of many parts
  which are loosely connected by the fine minimalist design. Each has a
  title, eg. "mass media" or "effect of the year". Small human figures are
  crowded up in infinite rows, and they are jumping up and down. A 3d
  statistics chart proves that 3state is the best demogroup. A tree made
  up of TV screens grows in the middle of a valley.

  FR08 by Farbrausch; #1 at The Party 2000
     Farbrausch is another name of Elitegroup, the group which made
  Kasparov, the winner of the demo competition at The Party 1999. This
  intro is something like the 64 kilobytes version of Kasparov. It is a
  very impressive 3d scene player - and that is it. It requires DirectX 8
  and the party version is not really stable.

  Different Noise by Aardbei; #1 at Dreamhack 2000
     Short but interesting intro with a noisy grey design. There are
  flying meduzas, a starfield, tunnel made up of curly wires, an abstract
  terrain with a lake and hills and several other effects which words fail
  to describe... <grin> The music is a noisy track which fits the effects
  perfectly.

  TAC 2 by Tazadum; #1 at Trax 2000
     This intro can not be put into any cathegory such as minimalism. The
  design is fine-tuned and consistent from the beginning till the end. It
  contains extreme amount of effects: tunnel made up of little spots,
  fractal trees, raytracer, 3d morph, flat shaded objects, and so on. The
  visuals are synchronised well to the music, which is a calm tune. Not a
  really original intro but fun to watch.

                --Gekko


--=--=--
--=--=------=--=------=--=----
  Tracking Tool Index
     The Trackers
  By:  Coplan
----=--=------=--=------=--=--

  -=- Introduction -=-

     This project started more like an experiment.  Being a long time
  member of the scene, I have seen many changes.  I have nothing against
  change.  But, I don't always have the need to change myself.  That need,
  however, came out the other day.  I realized that I didn't quite have
  all the tools that I needed in order to succesfully make the type of
  music I wanted to make. So, I decided to hop on over the Maz Sound Tools
  (http://www.maz_sound.com) and grab some software and utilities.  I
  grabbed a lot, and evaluated a lot.  To save you from repeating this
  task, I decided to share my findings with all of you.  Every once in a
  while over the next few months (barring some real life situation that
  prevents me from doing so), I plan to review a different set of tools
  that might be beneficial to tracking.  This month, I think I'll start
  easy:  The Trackers


  -=- Tracking Classic Style -=-

     No doubt about it, there are still two tracking programs that hold
  the standard in the scene:  Impulse Tracker and Fast Tracker II.  They
  are the trend setters, and (as far as I'm concerned) the point where
  extended features stopped becoming a necessity and started becomming
  ear-candy. IT's implementation New Note Actions (NNA) was a big one.
  Being able to continue a note while starting a new one in the same
  channel was quite impressive, and made tracking lives much easier.  Look
  at the old skool trackers -- some still take up 6 channels for their
  harps and trumpets, even though they don't have to with NNAs.  Fast
  Tracker II brought the new interface to us -- which was the answer to
  some prayers, but the "back-off" sign for others.  Sure, being able to
  play "nibbles" while playing your tunes is neat, but some people just
  prefer the Scream Tracker interface.  So, the break down:

  Impulse Tracker
     Creator:  Jeffrey Lim (AKA: Pulse)
     Interface: DOS (Can shell from Win9x)
     Sound Cards:  Most major brands, or anything SB16 compatible.  You'd be
        surprised how many still work in IT.  It even works on PC speaker,
        but don't expect good results.

     Mind you, I might have a slight biased, but IT is still a classic.
  The key commands might take some getting used to, but there is always
  help right there with the tap of the F1 key.  The help is also context
  sensative, which means that it'll change depending on what part of the
  program you are useing.  You'll also never find a more complete user
  manual, as Jeffrey (and his helpers) have done a wonderful job
  documenting every tiny little feature of the program.  I admire the time
  that was put into the documentation of this program.

     The most notable feature of Impulse Tracker is it's abilities with
  instruments.  The innovative technology was the New Note Actions (NNAs).
  NNAs allowed you to carry an instrument through the beginning of
  another.  The theory is that the program will allow the instrument's
  sound to be  carried to another channel. This is very handy for many
  instruments, as you can create a better transition between notes.  The
  problem is that you need to know how to use the NNAs well, or you can
  seriously bog down your computer (imagine 256 virtual channels - the
  program maximum - playing at once, then trying to add a few more.

     Another nice feature about IT is that it supports a lot of formats.
  At the time of its surface, Scream Tracker 3 was still running rampant.
  Since IT was based on ST3, it was only natural that you could save into
  the S3M format.  That did, however, pose the same limitations that the
  S3M format had -- so IT became a standard.  Impulse Tracker, can load
  several formats, including the MOD, 669, MTM, S3M, XM and of course IT.
  IT also supports many sample formats; most notable are PAT (Patch
  samples for the Gravis Ultrasound line of cards) and KRZ (Kurzweil
  synthesizer patches), among many others.

     I have heard some people complain about the 64 channel  (256 virtual)
  limit.  It  shouldn't bother most people, but it might possibly affect
  some of the fast paced electronic styles out there, useing all 64
  channels and NNAs flying all over the place.  It could get hairy.  Then,
  of course, there is the natural limitation of being a DOS program.  Even
  I will admit that the days of DOS are numbered, and it isn't getting any
  easier to configure DOS programs through windows.  The interface, as
  told by some, might be a bit archaic too.  I disagree here, as I believe
  in simplicity -- but I can see the point.  After all, I refuse to use a
  mouse if I don't have to.


  Fast Tracker II
     Creator: Triton Productions (Vouge & Mr. H)
     Interface: DOS
     Sound Cards: In theory, any SB16 compatible sound card, plus some
        other standards, work fine in it.  However, I have had some
        problems.

     Fast Tracker II (FT2) is an innovator of the interface.  No other
  tracking program that I know of allows you to play nibbles while you
  listen to tunes.  Seriously though, it has full mouse support, and lots
  of things to click on.  It has a nice online help menu as well, which is
  a good thing as no other documentation comes with the tracker.  The
  manual is, unfortunately, not written well enough for someone who's
  never used the program, or any tracker for that matter.  The benefit of
  Fast Tracker is truly the interface.  It has a lot of bells and wistles
  that might not be necessary, but all-in-all, it is much more user
  friendly for the windows generation.

     The major drawback about FT2 is that it seems to have a glitch with
  my sound card.  I use an Sound Blaster Live, and it seems to crash if I
  try to play sound through it.  In theory, this shouldn't be a problem,
  as I have the environment variable set properly and my card emulates the
  SB16 standard (Well, I might add).  Hell, even Scream Tracker still runs
  on this sound card.  If you can get it to work, though, it is a fairly
  decent tracking program, and one worth checking into.


  -=- New Trax, Same Culture -=-

     There is a whole array of new tracking programs out there.  For the
  most part, they all try to be just like the other guy -- nothing majorly
  innovative and interface changes.  It is my hope that one day, someone
  will offer something new.  But, they are definately worth a look at as
  alternatives to the DOS based ancestors.  As I am not very familiar with
  most of these programs, I admit I might be missing a lot of details.
  But I did spend at least a week with each program.


  Modplug Tracker
  Creator: Olivier Lapicque
  Interface:  Windows (DirectX support)
  Sound cards:  Any Windows 9x compatible.

     You gotta give the man a lot of credit for versatility.  Of all the
  trackers I played with, this is one of the most customizable.  If you're
  an oldskool tracker, you might be able to get used to this program
  pretty easily, as it supports keyboard settings from the two most
  popular:  Fast Tracker and Impulse Tracker.  That made my
  experimentation very easy.

     The interface is pretty typical of a windows interface: menus and/or
  buttons.  One oversight, however, is that you can't view multiple panels
  at once.  I, for one, would love to be able to view the instrument panel
  and the track panel at the same time.  I can't do this in IT either, but
  at least you can see that a given instrument is playing.  In a windows
  environment, this type of thing should be relatively easy, but I'm not a
  programmer (keep that in mind).  That brings me to another peeve -- no
  mass list of samples/instruments.  I like to see my entire list of
  samples at once -- I have yet to figure out a way to do that.

     There are some very nice features in Modplug Tracker.  The one that I
  love the most is the "cleanup" tool.  This set of tools will remove
  unused patterns, clean out unused sample data (even crop out unused
  portions of sample) and re-order your patterns so that the list reads in
  a linear manner.  Aside from the obvious use for song cleanup before
  release, these tools might make cooperative songs fairly easy --
  especially the pattern organization tool.  The chord function is pretty
  tight as well.  Granted, one could track in chords with Impulse Tracker,
  but it was pretty difficult to get used to.  MPT takes advantage of a
  windows interface, and actually gives you a tiny piano section to tool
  with.  This should make it easier for most people.  Finally, another one
  of my favorite features is having more than one song open at a time.
  This has allowed me to take ideas from one song and stick them in
  another.  A much neaded feature.  For those new to tracking, this is my
  recommended tracker for you.


  MadTracker
     Creator: Yannick Delwiche
     Interface: Windows
     Sound Cards: Windows Compatible

     I've never heard of this one, 'til I came to Maz.  It has a lot of
  potential as a tracker, as it's got quite a nice interface, and some
  interesting features.  It is based on the Fast Tracker II interface, it
  seems, which might be a comfort to some.  But there is enough different
  to piss you off (no nibbles).  In fact, I would've rated this as one of
  the best, if it weren't for some very important issues.

     MT2, the native format of Mad Tracker, is not exactly universal.
  This wouldn't be a problem if you could export to a different format,
  like IT or XM.  While the program can read these formats, it cannot save
  into these formats.  Don't assume, however, that it can play a format
  well if it can be read.  Playback for the IT, S3M and XM formats were
  less than satisfactory.  Effects were poorly timed and samples weren't
  playing at proper volumes.  In some situations (especially with XMs),
  samples weren't even played properly at all.  You also don't want to
  alt-tab away from this program, as it will start to skip and crackle
  like an MP3 played on a 286 Mhz machine (well, not that severe, but it
  does lose some of it's timing).  These two problems are very big in my
  opinion.  Aside from that, I was able to carry out my evaluation.

     Mad Tracker has two features that caught my eye.  The first was
  concatenation.  Concatenation is a method of combining two sets of data
  based on one common element.  This is most often used in spread sheets
  or databases, but it's nice to see it used in a program like this.
  Ideally, you can take the information from one channel and join it with
  that of another.  Very useful for mimimizing channels (and Mad Tracker
  supports NNAs, so this is a logical tool).  The other cool feature that
  caught my eye was the pattern effects.  In each pattern, you can define
  a bunch of basic effects like stereo delays, distortion, flange and so
  on.  It's a nice little add-on as it makes life a bit easier for the
  casual tracker. My only recommendation for Mad Tracker users, however,
  is to record to wav, and convert to MP3.  Otherwise, the format isn't
  exactly portable.


  -=- Everything You Knew Doesn't Count -=-

     There are a few new trackers on the scene these days.  These aren't
  traditional trackers.  They are the new wave of modern computer based
  music.  They threw out all the old rules (with some exceptions), and
  brought in some new.  The best way to explain this series of trackers is
  to consider a blend between traditional trackers, and digital synthesis
  (be it software based, or hardware based).  It is a definate alternative
  to those who are interested in doing some good high quality electronic
  styles.

     Before you read on, however, please realize that a 4th generation
  tracking  program like this dictates a few differences.  The most
  notable difference is that you can't export into normal modules.  The
  inner workings of such programs are much more complex than that of a
  traditional tracker.  Exporting to a true module track is next to
  impossible.  Playing a song isn't like playing a standard module either.
  You need to have access to the "machines" (the sound generator and
  filter add-on/plugins) in order to modulate the song.  Thus, playing the
  tune through an external program isn't so logical either.  This in mind,
  realize that it is recommended that you export your song to a WAV
  (usually built into the program), and convert to an MP3.  That is the
  best way to get your tunage out there.  Many thanks to Oskari Tammelin,
  creator of Buzz, for his help in understanding these concepts.


  Buzz
     Creator: Oskari Temmelin and Hans Andersson
     Interface: Windows
     Sound Cards: Windows Compatible (DirectX Support)

     Buzz was the first of the 4th generation programs that I picked up.
  Having very little prior experience with synthesis, I was quite
  confused.  For one, I had trouble figuring out how to get sound working.
  Fortunately, I discovered a tutorial song that teaches you basically how
  to write a song in it's song message.  Once I read the tutorial, I knew
  enough to at least experiment with the software.  It's been about three
  weeks now, and I'm finally starting to write music in it.  Once you get
  used to manipulating the "machines", things start to go a bit more
  smoothly.

     For those of you used to the oldskool tracking programs, Buzz has two
  distinct differences.  The first is that you generate your samples
  through "machines" that you manipulate and filter with other machines in
  order to achieve the sounds you want.  While it might seem like a lot of
  work to get a good instrument, it is also quite dynamic.  Especially for
  those of you into the electronic styles.  With many of the machines, you
  can change the sound output on the fly by special commands put into a
  pattern.

     The second key difference is the way you "build" your song.  Each
  machine has it's own channel and pattern information.  If you create a
  machine, you then create a pattern that you can enter your notes and
  data in.  Now, the big difference -- each machine also has it's own
  channel in the sequencer.  You may or may not actually have some
  patterns playing for a machine all the time -- in fact, it's not
  likely.  You can define several riffs, for example, and sequence them
  in a given order.  You can also sequence other machine's riffs relative
  to that.  What you have is a very dynamic sequencing system where you
  don't have much redundant data -- as you don't literally track notes
  for different machiens side-by-side.

     Though dynamic, this system does have one key design flaw.  There is
  no way to see the actual notes as they are played relative to each
  other.  When you look at pattern data, you can only view one machine at
  a time.  When you view sequence data -- you only see a list of patterns
  in each channel, no note data.  As I've played around with things, I've
  found it pretty easy to fall out of key, or out of rhythm, as patterns
  don't have to be equal length, and that alone causes problems.

     Overall, however, I see Buzz having a lot of potential.  The
  developers have discussed a possible new version, but it isn't exactly
  a priority.  They have other projects on their minds.  The scalability
  of Buzz isn't a concern however.  People can develop machines at their
  leisure, and upload them to buzzmachines.com -- a depository for over
  200 buzz machines (generators and filters).  Just be aware that if you
  plan to use Buzz, you'll most likely have to record the song into a WAV
  and distribute your music in MP3 format.  If you use machines that
  others might not have, that poses portability problems.  In the free
  music scene, we don't want that.


  Psycle
     Creator: Juan Antonio Arguelles Rius and Mats H”jlund
     Interface: Windows (Linux with Wine -- read on)
     Sound Cards:  Windows Compatible (DirectX Support)

     Of the 4th generation trackers, I would have to say that Psycle is my
  favorite.  It has all the nice little tricks that Buzz has, plus some
  features that allow me to better use the program.  While Buzz might have
  the dynamic sequencer, Psycle takes more of a traditional tracking
  approach to sequencing.  You have a pattern editor and an order list,
  much like traditional trackers.  The obvious advantage to this is that
  you can see notes side-by-side just like you always have been.  Though,
  you run into the same problem that you always did with older tracker --
  redundant note data.  If you have a baseline that is going to be the
  same for several patterns, you'll have to copy-and-paste it into all
  the new patterns.  In my opinion, it's worth it, so I can see exactly
  what I'm  doing.

     Much like Buzz, you also have several machines to work with plus
  Virtual Studio Technology (VST) support.  You can choose from any of
  the native  machines, or you can use any number of the VST machines out
  there (pretty common).  While I don't see nearly as many native machines
  out there, I think Psycle has the most potential.

     Now, the best part for all you linux geeks out there.  Ranger Rick
  and I were messing with this program the other day, and he discovered
  that you can actually run this under Wine in Linux without any problems
  -- so long as you have working sound drivers and a current version of
  Wine.  This isn't a linux magazine, so I won't bother getting into
  details, but it is possible.  Both Ranger Rick and I were able to
  successfully listen to music via Wine, and I even did some tracking in
  it.  Not bad.

     As with every programs, there are some things I wish I had in Psycle
  as well.  For one, I wish I had a nice play interface that Impulse
  Tracker has.  There is a checkbox in the Pattern Sequencer that allows
  you to follow pattern numbers in a song, and if you click on the
  pattern currently playing, you can figure out what you need.  But, I
  like to see everything automatically scroll as it is played.   I'll
  admit, I even like the channel specific VU meters, which Psycle does
  not have.  The other disadvantage is that the quality documentation for
  Psycle must be found online at http://www.pastnotecut.org/psycle/ --
  the Official Psycledelic's website.  The help file that comes with
  Psycle is rather poor, and incomplete.  If you intend to use Psycle,
  you best visit that site.

     All in all, I would recommend Psycle to anyone willing to spend some
  time  learning a new interface.  It has such a great deal of potential
  as a  tracking program.  If you like your old samples, don't worry, you
  can use  them with the Sampler machine.  But to fully use the program to
  its potential, you should learn  how to use the sound generation and
  filter machines as much as you can.


  -=- Wrap-up -=-

     Well, I think I did a big dent in all the popular trackers out there.
  As  a result of my experimentation, I decided that I am going to start
  useing  Psycle more now.  For some projects, I will continue to use
  Impulse  Tracker.  I still have the need to release things in modular
  format, like  for some of the orchestral game music I do.   But for my
  electronic styles, I will be useing Psycle and releasing in MP3 format.
  It is my hope that this new  trend of trackers continues on.  I do not
  believe that trackers have  reached their maximum potential --
  especially after seeing such fine  examples this month.  More
  developments are being made all the time, and I  believe that there is
  still a long way to go before it stops.

                --Coplan


--=--=--
--=--=------=--=------=--=----
  The Listener
    Music from Hunz, Warder and Distance
  By:  Tryhuk
----=--=------=--=------=--=--

     The event of the month is without doubt a big comeback of Hunz. He
  released many new songs and they're all damned good. He surprised me
  again with a slight style shift to crossover of classical pop,
  progressive electronica in alphaconspiracy style and impressive music of
  bjork. I would recommend you all his new tracks, but because I
  understand that not all people can make such a big downloads, my
  personal pick would be probably "sarah's song" which is doing pretty
  good in mp3.com charts.


  -=- 15th of November         -=-
  -=-                -- Warder -=-

     I bet my socks that you'll be very surprised by the newest release of
  Warder. During last few months he (finally) became known for his amazing
  tracks in celtic style, but now he searches again for a new style to
  study. And that's the reason why we can now listen to "15th of
  november", a blues track with jazz elements with in scene unique sound,
  comparable only with no one less than necros. It has very calm and
  enjoyable sound, perfectly tuned up instruments and a structure without
  a single crack. Give it a try.

  Song Information:
     Title:  15th of November
     Author:  Warder
     Release date: december 2000
     Length: ??
     Filename (zipped/unzipped):  w-15on.zip
     File Size (zipped/unzipped):  1676757b
     Source:  http://third-eye.planet-d.net/warder/w-15on.zip


  -=- technature 14.10.2000    -=-
  -=-            -- lackluster -=-

     I guess I belong to a small comunity of people that don't think about
  his every track that it is a superb piece of alternative music. But his
  newest release - a 60mb record of his performance in helsinki was a
  really nice present to all scene people. Entire session is very solid,
  tracks are very well sequenced to slowly build a lissome atmosphere,
  gently changing tempo and a way that tracks handle the melody. IMHO it's
  his best release after bothersome (mother mix). I don't know what else
  to say - as I said, I really enjoy the atmosphere of this performance
  and it also contains most of my favourite tracks. If you have a chance,
  it's definitely worth the download (although even I had to ask a friend
  to make the download for me).

  Track listing:
     01. space
     02. 11/11/99
     03. 31/10/99
     04. starcell u.k.
     05. 20333
     06. dooba
     07. shk2x
     08. teramut
     09. rumk8
     10. 07/10/99
     11. haloaw

  Song Information:
     Title:  technature 14.10.2000 / domma-2  / helsinki, finland
     Author:  lackluster
     Release date: november 2000
     Length:  58 minutes
     Filename:  lackluster_-_live@technature-141000.mp3
     File Size:  60mb
     Source:  http://lackluster.stc.cx/mp3


--=--=--
--=--=------=--=------=--=----
  Screen Lit Vertigo
     In Cyber, Love creation MAX & Slavery
  By:  Seven
----=--=------=--=------=--=--
  -=- In Cyber by Satori + Aural Planet (final version) -=-

  Found at www.scene.org
  Released at Digital Zooo (I didn't find any other demo from Digital Zooo,
     nor a result file. Maybe it was the only one?)

  System requirements: Nothing mentioned. Win9x, 18 MB HD, no 3D
     card required.

  Test Machine: PIII 900 196MB, SB-live, GeForce 2MX 32MB, Win ME
     (Yes, I prepared myself for the next millennium)

  The credits:
  Code: Zden/Satori
  Music: Raiden/Aural Planet

  The Demo:
     If you've seen Metamorf, Different Engine or other demos of Zden, you
  know he makes "different" demos. They're not aiming to please the eyes,
  but to bring you a message, or at least submerge you in their specific,
  coherent atmosphere. In Cyber is no exception. The main ingredients of
  the 512*384 demo are wireframe triangles without anti-aliasing, very
  contrasting primary colors and morphing/growing 3D forms with gliding
  textures. As you can guess from the title, the theme is cyberspace. Not
  the commercial Internet with it's banners, flash anims and pretty
  pictures, but a complex geometrical universe with its waves of data, a
  nirvana of ones and zeros. Several objects have a distorted look, but
  not as much as in Metamorf. The spiral and the weird object at the end
  are fascinating. Due to the way the polys are clipped, they seem to be
  constructed and deconstructed at the same time. Weird.

     There's only one normal picture, a photo of a Buddha statue. Raiden
  composed the soundtrack again, but it's quite different from Metamorfs:
  less industrial, more idm. It starts with a kind of almost echoing sound
  that stays in the background during the whole demo. It's the foundation
  for a whole range of synthesized instruments, which I really can't
  describe more  specifically (My music vocabulary sucks, yes). But I
  think it fits the theme of the demo perfectly.


  Overall:
     If you're not scared by this kind of experimental demos, In Cyber is
  a really nice demo. Maybe some parts could have been a bit shorter, but
  it's never boring. Content-wise, everything fits together nicely. My
  only criticism isn't about the contents, but about the form: 18 MB is
  just too much for this kind of demo. There's a 12 MB big datafile of
  uncompressed textures and height maps which pkzip can reduce to 2 MB. I
  know Zden's motto is "Fuck demos, let's art", but I don't think using
  (for example) the free Zlib library is that much of an effort.



  -=-  by INF (party-version) -=-

  Found at www.scene.org
  1st place at The Party 10

  System requirements:
     win98/win2k, fast Pentium 2 (p3 or athlon recommended), 128mb ram
     (256mb recommended), fast opengl accelerated 3d card (GeForce
     recommended), windows compatible soundcard, and 12 MB HD

  Test Machine: PIII 900 192MB, SB-live, GeForce 2MX 32MB, WinME

  The credits:
    code: krav, doc mental
    graphics: tmk
    music: quiet mode
    3d: orome, voja & duncan

  The Demo:
     INF's newest demo follows the style of their previous demo, Yume 2000,
  with a lot of pictures of pretty Japanese girls, and a new virtual idol.
  She runs through a subway station and a hi-tech/low-fi city, hurrying
  cause she's got to be somewhere on time. She even looks at her watch,
  although she doesn't wear any :) The use of accelerated 3D improves the
  realism compared to Yume 2000. Especially the fact that the whole model
  is now build from a single  skin helps a lot, no more limbs that have
  strange intersections at the joints.  Still the movements are a bit
  artificial, and the face shows hardly any emotion, except maybe a frozen
  expression of quiet amazement. Regarding effects, there are dynamic
  shadows, a radial-blurred morphing  object, and the typical accelerated
  effects like the transparent whirling textures  that look kind of
  motion-blurred. The pictures are made by TMK, who sticks to his favorite
  subject: Japanese girls with a dreamy look staring into the void. There
  are a lot of hires hicolor oriental eyes, lips and faces, some
  full-screen combined with dot-filters, some part of a scrolling
  sequence. There's one bondage-type picture that doesn't fit with the
  rest, but as mentioned in the info file the demo was made during a whole
  year, and TMKs style changed a bit during that period. The music is
  again an MP3 by Quiet Mode, which probably is a Japanese commercial band
  because "this demo will be included as a data track on the next quiet
  mode single to be released in japan". Such a cooperation between
  demogroups and music groups is IMHO the only acceptable way to use
  commercial music in demos. The tune is quite dnb-ish, with very little
  variation and almost no melody. At the start and halfway through it, you
  can hear several people talking at the same time, but I don't know
  Japanese so beat me what it is about. I can't say I like this style,
  it's too monotonous for my taste.


  Overall:
     Love Creation Max has very good pictures and 3D scenes, OK code and,
  well, not-my-style-of music :) The overall atmosphere is strange though:
  the fuzzy pictures of the pretty girls contrast with the sharp numbers,
  lines  and barcodes that are overlaid on the 3D scenes, some parts have
  gray snow or a horizontal blur over them which gives an even more low-fi
  feeling to the  demo. INF had a lot of problems creating this demo, and
  it's not what they wanted  it to be (read the full story in the
  love.txt), but it's sure worth checking  out.


  -=- Slavery by Fairlight (final version) -=-

  Found at www.scene.org
  1st place at Dreamhack 2K accelerated democompo

  System requirements:
     Windows 9X,NT2k, ME Pentium 233, 64 MB, Direct-X 7.0, 6 MB HD
     (I think a group is really oldskool when they actually include a
     decent info file with their production. Thank you Fairlight)

  Test Machine: PIII 900 192MB, SB-live, GeForce 2MX 32MB, WinME

  The credits:
     Code & 3D: Pantaloon
     Music: Andromeda
     Graphics: Graffik

  The Demo:
     The first thing I noticed when watching Slavery was the contrast
  between the sharp 3D and the really blocky images and 2D effects. The
  images are 256*256 textures stretched full-screen, and some transparent
  textures that glide over the screen had like 16*16 pixels. Is this
  supposed to be a new kind of design or what? Today I watched it again,
  after having installed DirectX 8 (because Fr-08, the best intro of The
  Party 10 requires it). And guess what, everything was much smoother.
  Apparently Fairlight uses some kind of hardware interpolation that's not
  supported by DX7, so if you've the same problem, download the newest DX
  at http://www.microsoft.com/directX/homeuser/downloads/default.asp .
  The demo starts in an basement filled with water and pipes, the credits
  are shown on wooden boards on the floor. The relaxing tune (a 4,5 MB
  MP3) with ethnic instruments make you feel at ease, until it changes
  with one  dissonant shriek to a trash-metal song with some screamed
  vocals. An picture of a head wrapped up with barbed wire is shown now
  plus a fast morphing blobby object surrounded by flares. The rest of the
  demo follows this pain+flashes style: a room with lightning, slogans a
  la "Dig deeper in your grave", a skeleton hand and ribcage in the
  background, an endless 3D raster of metal pipes... The info file states
  that Slavery is a try-out of Fairlights new 3D system, and that it
  consequently contains no real effects. Still, you can do lots of things
  with moving 3D objects and transparent textures. The typical rotating
  ball with "hairs" of lights, for example, or the Wonder/Sunflower effect
  that looks like satellites casting light from their edges. There are
  quite some pictures in the demo, a handdrawn Slavery logo, several body
  parts with barbed wire, a naked girl,... Too bad the trick to stretch
  textures to fullscreen results in visible jaggies, even with
  interpolation, and the JPG artifacts don't help either.  Still the
  images manage to convey most of the feeling, just like the soundtrack.

  Overall:
     Slavery is not a top-notch production, but as said before it's just a
  try-out. The fast-changing mix of effects/objects is quite enjoyable,
  but the design  is a bit too flashy, and IMHO those horizontal lines
  that move over every  screen don't add anything to the demo. I'm looking
  forward to see Fairlight's first full demo with this system, to see what
  they can do when they push it to its limits.

                --Seven


--=--=--
--=--=------=--=------=--=----
  Editorial
    What are we in for?
  By: Coplan
----=--=------=--=------=--=--
     Finally, the true millenium is here.  What can we expect as
  demosceners in the upcoming year?  What about the upcoming decade?
  Well, I'm not Nostrodamus, but I can attempt to make predictions.

  -=- DOS is out, Linux is IN -=-
     When the demoscene came to PC, DOS was the basis for everything.  DOS
  based trackers, demos, etc.  But, DOS is slowly becoming obsolete.
  Microsoft doesn't support it anymore, and I don't expect that the
  demoscene will either.  Linux, however, has a lot of potential for
  maintaining the demoscene.  For one, it's open source.  Open source
  allows coders to fully understand the inner workings of the operating
  system and its libraries.  What that means is that it might be a lot
  easier for coders to develop high quality demos.  As for the music
  scene, more and more sound cards are getting full support for Linux, and
  that's a very good thing.  Pretty soon, you'll start to see some very
  good Linux based tracking tools -- though I have yet to see any good
  ones.  I don't think it will be too long, though.  After all, Sound
  Blaster (the industry standard) is offering linux drivers for their
  popular Live series.  It's just a matter of time.

  -=- MP3 Mania -=-
     MP3s are taking over the scene.  Like it or not, it's a reality.  But
  that is a good thing, if you look at it the right way.  It's still
  music that you'll love.  MP3s allow for one major advantage, one that is
  very worthwhile:  Scalability.  If you have a 6 minute song in IT
  format, it can be any size depending on the sample data.  High quality
  samples are a very popular thing these days, with good reason -- you get
  incredible sounding samples, you get a pretty good song.  It is not
  unlikely for a 6 minute IT file to be more than a couple of MB in size.
  The same song in MP3 format will be consistantly about 6 minutes (128
  bit sample).  I expect that we'll see new versions of tracking programs
  that offer direct support for MP3 conversions.  There might even be a
  way for some music editing programs of the future to take advantage of
  the faster processors out on the market, and allow you to mix MP3s like
  they were records (two turn tables, and a microphone).  Hell, MP3 might
  end up becoming the format of yesterday, replaced by some new format.

  -=- Net Radio, Net TV and the Demoscene -=-
     Some people are already starting up some net radios for trackers.
  It's a good idea, and a good way for tracking to become popular again
  at least in a prestigious way.  But the same could hold true for
  videos as well.  As bandwidth grows wider and wider, I imagine that one
  day, we'll have a method for piping high quality videos through the
  net.  It's already possible, just not widely accepted -- as the
  majority of the computer users still use 56k modems.  Fear not, it's
  coming.  And it will do wonders for the scene.  After all, aren't demos
  quite nearly music videos anyhow?


     Lord knows what we can expect in the upcoming year, and in the
  uncoming decade.  I think about it every day, and I wonder and I dream.
  I just hope it all happens soon, I'd love to see what's coming at us.

                    --Coplan


--=--=--
--=--=------=--=------=--=----
  Scene Sense
     Perhaps it is Time for a Change
  By: Psitron
----=--=------=--=------=--=--

     Many of you probably are already aware of the small amount of days
  left for DOS in the mainstream world. If anyone out there has Windows ME
  then you already know that Microsoft was, in fact, telling the truth
  about removing DOS from future Windows releases after all. Windows ME
  has no true DOS support that I am aware of, anyway (as one is now unable
  to make a pure-DOS bootdisk). Impulse Tracker, however, still seems to
  run in a shell, but those days are soon to be short lived - at least for
  the fanatics that want the newest versions of Windows.

  In my opinion that, in a nifty four-letter word, sucks! But that does
  not mean that trackers are S.O.L., more or less. There is, after all,
  your old dusty copies of DOS sitting  around or even FreeDOS if you used
  your DOS disks to stabilize your wobbly table one too many times. But
  this is simply a work-around to keep using an out of date tracker that
  is no longer being updated and maintained anyway. Impulse Tracker is
  still a very  powerful and useful tracker, but how useful can it be when
  one has to constantly boot from DOS to Windows all the time? Once more,
  IT does not support (at least not directly) newer soundcards on the
  market that many musicians are deciding to buy, either for power,
  price, or both.

     Of course, there is always the new line of Windows trackers in
  existence. Yet my personal experience with them has been that their
  interface is lacking (as I do not like  using mice to track) or, in the
  case of MadTracker, they are buggy beyond all  comprehension, and lack
  thought-out approaches to new tracker designs.

     I believe this seems to be an indicator of a larger problem, one that
  will progressively become more clear as the scene migrates to (cringe)
  Windows. It seems that the scene needs a new direction entirely, in my
  opinion. Windows has, and will continue to suck - and do not even try
  to debate that one. Not even the apparent stability of ME can change my
  mind. I believe that the scene has the opportunity and  responsibility
  of packing up and moving elsewhere. Yet as much as I hate to admit it,
  Windows will likely continue to be used by many musicians, graphicians,
  and coders  alike but now because of power - because of ease of use
  (lazy bums). But there is a whole world of possibilities sitting out in
  the world and FREE, too! Linux, BeOS, FreeDOS (cuz' you can't beat good
  ole' DOS), and now even Solaris are all free for the taking and very
  powerful:

     Linux, a free truly multi-tasking, multi-processing operating system
  with many of the libraries necessary for good demos and multimedia
  applications already in place for sceners to thrive in. Granted, in my
  opinion, the tracker department has a long way to go. For example, I am
  waiting to see a tracker that utilizes plug-in GUIs for the Textmode
  tracker like myself to the mouse-based FastTracker style that many
  current Linux trackers emulate. I am also very eager to see a tracker
  with a new concept out there. Sorry Linux tracker developers, but a
  Fast Tracker II clone does not cut it in my book, for while FT2  is
  powerful and preferred by many, it lacks support for things like
  resonance, more than 32 channels, sample compression, etc.

     BeOS, an astounding a very new piece of art that needs just a little
  TLC. While I have not had the opportunity to experience BeOS for
  myself, screenshots make it look impressively like Linux, BeOS is a (now
  free) true multi-tasking OS that has even more enhancements for
  symmetric multi-processing. It even has a tracker! Though it is not free
  unfortunately. Also BeOS seems to lack hardware-support - something that
  really hurt Be, and the rest of man-kind quite extensively. If the
  right circumstances exist, BeOS could easily replace Microsoft as a
  gaming (and demo-developing) OS - something I have been waiting to see
  since DOS-based games.

     Yes, even FreeDOS, which, despite a few bumps, is still a very
  powerful OS for the simple reason that it is so damn, well, simple. With
  only a little overhead it is true that DOS will crash and die very well.
  But because of this lack of overhead, DOS has the ability to 'get the
  hell out of a program's way by allowing direct access to hardware.
  Sure, there are few libraries for DOS, which means that someone is going
  to have to write some either for his or her own personal use, or for the
  betterment of the scene.

     Some of you are probably still hearing talk of DemOS. Well, to my
  knowledge, DemOS has been dead for quite some time. But is the concept
  too hard to understand?  Imagine having an OS with the idea in mind to
  provide groups with a method of utilizing the computer to it's absolute
  potential without having to worry about all the crap that Windows,
  among other Oses, throw into the mix to slow things down. I would
  personally  like to see this idea revived, as it follows to the letter
  the original ideas of the scene. I  keep reiterating because I am still
  unconvinced that many of today's demos are holding  true to this idea.

     In a nutshell, I believe an integral part to making the scene shine
  like it used to 'back in the day' is for the scene to simply find a
  better alternative to the crap that we all  have to put up with. And
  that is being slave to the commercialized world of Microsoft  and others
  alike. To ever go a step further, I think the gaming industry would have
  very  much to gain by packing up shop and moving to an OS like BeOS or
  Linux (which is  already being attempted). Hell, even OS/2 - anything
  that shows Microsoft that we are  not a bunch of lazy idiot minions that
  Bill Gates will use to control the world.

     Someone once said to me that it was 'progress, not perfection.' On
  that note, I, as  a tracker, group-member, and scener am not in search
  for change overnight. I am, however, in search of something that could
  be categorized as change in the right direction. I believe the scene is
  stagnant with the stench of out of date trackers and bad  libraries that
  cause many demos to be mere 'bleh's on the Wow-O-Meter. Potential, after
  all does not amount to much of anything without actions to turn that
  potential into something that hopefully makes me immediately thing of
  sex.

     I hope your Holidays were very wonderful, and I hope you had a
  wonderful New Years as well. I do hope, however, that you stayed the
  hell away from the colored beer. ;)  On a final note, for places to go
  to find more information in some of the Oses presented  here, you can
  look into these fine websites - on a web browser near you:

  http://www.linux.org (though there are MANY sites related to Linux)
  http://www.be.com/products/freebeos/
  http://www.freedos.org (though there is also another Free-based DOS
     clone - I forgot the  name of it, alas)

                --PsiTron


--=--=--
--=--=------=--=------=--=----
  Link List
----=--=------=--=------=--=--

  Portals:

      Orange Juice.............................http://www.ojuice.net
      Scene.org.................................http://www.scene.org
      SceneSpot.............................http://www.scenespot.org
      Pouet.net.................................http://www.pouet.net
      Demoscene.org.........................http://www.demoscene.org
      Scenet....................................http://www.scenet.de
      Demo.org...................................http://www.demo.org
      Czech Scene................................http://www.scene.cz
      Hungarian Scene........................http://www.scene-hu.com
      Italian Scene...........................http://run.to/la_scena
  <N> ModPlug Central Resources..........http://www.castlex.com/mods
      Norvegian Scene............http://www.neutralzone.org/scene.no
      Polish Scene...........................http://www.demoscena.pl
      Russian Scene..........................http://www.demoscene.ru
      Spanish Scene............................http://www.escena.org
      Swiss Scene..............................http://www.chscene.ch

  Archives:

      Acid2.....................................ftp://acid2.stack.nl
      Amber.......................................ftp://amber.bti.pl
      Cyberbox.....................................ftp://cyberbox.de
      Hornet (1992-1996)........................ftp://ftp.hornet.org
      Scene.org..................................ftp://ftp.scene.org
      Scene.org Austra........................ftp://ftp.nl.scene.org
      Scene.org Netherlands...................ftp://ftp.au.scene.org
      Swiss Scene FTP...........................ftp://ftp.chscene.ch

  Demo Groups:

      3g Design..............................http://3gdesign.cjb.net
      3State...................................http://threestate.com
      7 Gods.........................................http://7gods.sk
      Aardbei.....................................http://aardbei.com
      Acid Rain..............................http://surf.to/acidrain
      Addict..................................http://addict.scene.pl
      Agravedict........................http://www.agravedict.art.pl
      Alien Prophets...................http://alienprophets.ninja.dk
      Anakata..............................http://www.anakata.art.pl
      Astral..............................http://astral.scene-hu.com
      Astroidea........................http://astroidea.scene-hu.com
      BlaBla..............................http://blabla.planet-d.net
      Blasphemy..............................http://www.blasphemy.dk
      Bomb..................................http://bomb.planet-d.net
      Broncs..................................http://broncs.scene.cz
      Byterapers.....................http://www.byterapers.scene.org
      Calodox.................................http://www.calodox.org
      Cocoon..............................http://cocoon.planet-d.net
      Confine.................................http://www.confine.org
      Damage...................................http://come.to/damage
      Eclipse............................http://www.eclipse-game.com
      Elitegroup..........................http://elitegroup.demo.org
      Exceed...........................http://www.inf.bme.hu/~exceed
      Fairlight.............................http://www.fairlight.com
      Fobia Design...........................http://www.fd.scene.org
      Freestylers..........................http://www.freestylas.org
      Fresh! Mindworks...................http://kac.poliod.hu/~fresh
      Future Crew..........................http://www.futurecrew.org
      Fuzzion.................................http://www.fuzzion.org
      GODS...................................http://www.idf.net/gods
      Halcyon...........................http://www.halcyon.scene.org
      Haujobb......................................http://haujobb.de
      Hellcore............................http://www.hellcore.art.pl
      Infuse...................................http://www.infuse.org
      Kilobite...............................http://kilobite.cjb.net
      Kolor................................http://www.kaoz.org/kolor
      Komplex.................................http://www.komplex.org
      Kooma.....................................http://www.kooma.com
      Mandula.........................http://www.inf.bme.hu/~mandula
      Maturefurk...........................http://www.maturefurk.com
      Monar................ftp://amber.bti.pl/pub/scene/distro/monar
      MOVSD....................................http://movsd.scene.cz
      Nextempire...........................http://www.nextempire.com
      Noice.....................................http://www.noice.org
      Orange.................................http://orange.scene.org
      Orion................................http://orion.planet-d.net
      Popsy Team............................http://popsyteam.rtel.fr
      Prone................................http://www.prone.ninja.dk
      Purple....................................http://www.purple.dk
      Rage........................................http://www.rage.nu
      Replay.......................http://www.shine.scene.org/replay
      Retro A.C...........................http://www.retroac.cjb.net
      Sista Vip..........................http://www.sistavip.exit.de
      Skytech team............................http://www.skytech.org
      Sunflower.......................http://sunflower.opengl.org.pl
      Talent.............................http://talent.eurochart.org
      The Black Lotus.............................http://www.tbl.org
      The Digital Artists Wired Nation.http://digitalartists.cjb.net
      The Lost Souls...............................http://www.tls.no
      TPOLM.....................................http://www.tpolm.com
      Trauma.................................http://sauna.net/trauma
      T-Rex.....................................http://www.t-rex.org
      Unik.....................................http://www.unik.ca.tc
      Universe..........................http://universe.planet-d.net
      Vantage..................................http://www.vantage.ch
      Wipe....................................http://www.wipe-fr.org

  Music Labels, Music Sites:

      Aisth.....................................http://www.aisth.com
      Aural Planet........................http://www.auralplanet.com
      Azure...................................http://azure-music.com
      Blacktron Music Production...........http://www.d-zign.com/bmp
      BrothomStates.............http://www.katastro.fi/brothomstates
      Chill..........................http://www.bentdesign.com/chill
      Chippendales......................http://www.sunpoint.net/~cnd
      Chiptune...............................http://www.chiptune.com
      Da Jormas................................http://www.jormas.com
      Fabtrax......http://www.cyberverse.com/~boris/fabtrax/home.htm
      Five Musicians.........................http://www.fm.scene.org
      Fridge...........................http://www.ssmedion.de/fridge
      Fusion Music Crew.................http://members.home.nl/cyrex
      Goodstuff..........................http://artloop.de/goodstuff
      Ignorance.............................http://www.ignorance.org
      Immortal Coil.............................http://www.ic.l7.net
      Intense...........................http://intense.ignorance.org
      Jecoute.................................http://jecoute.cjb.net
      Kosmic Free Music Foundation.............http://www.kosmic.org
      Lackluster.....................http://www.m3rck.net/lackluster
      Level-D.................................http://www.level-d.com
      Miasmah.............................http://www.miasmah.cjb.net
      Milk.......................................http://milk.sgic.fi
      Mah Music.............................http://come.to/mah.music
      Maniacs of noise...............http://home.worldonline.nl/~mon
      MAZ's sound homepage..................http://www.maz-sound.com
      Med.......................................http://www.med.fr.fm
      Mo'playaz..........................http://ssmedion.de/moplayaz
      Mono211.................................http://www.mono211.com
      Morbid Minds..............http://www.raveordie.com/morbidminds
      Noise................................http://www.noisemusic.org
      Noerror.......................http://www.error-404.com/noerror
      One Touch Records......................http://otr.planet-d.net
      Park..................................http://park.planet-d.net
      Radical Rhythms.....http://www.andrew.cmu.edu/user/merrelli/rr
      RBi Music.............................http://www.rbi-music.com
      Ruff Engine................http://members.xoom.com/ruff_engine
      SHR8M......................................http://1st.to/shr8m
      Sound Devotion................http://sugarbomb.x2o.net/soundev
      Soundstate.........................http://listen.to/soundstate
      Sunlikamelo-D...........http://www.error-404.com/sunlikamelo-d
      Suspect Records........................http://www.tande.com/sr
      Tequila........................http://www.defacto2.net/tequila
      Tempo................................http://tempomusic.cjb.net
      Tetris....................................http://msg.sk/tetris
      Theralite...........................http://theralite.avalon.hr
      Tokyo Dawn Records........................http://tdr.scene.org
      Triad's C64 music archive.............http://www.triad.c64.org
      UltraBeat.........................http://www.innerverse.com/ub
      Vibrants................................http://www.vibrants.dk
      Wiremaniacs.........................http://www.wiremaniacs.com
      Zen of Tracking.........................http://surf.to/the-imm

  Programming:

      Programming portal......................http://www.gamedev.net
      Programming portal.....................http://www.flipcode.com
      Game programming portal...............http://www.gamasutra.com
      3D programming portal.................http://www.3dgamedev.com
      Programming portal......................http://www.exaflop.org
      Programming portal............http://www.programmersheaven.com
      Programming portal.....................http://www.freecode.com

      NASM (free Assembly compiler)......http://www.cryogen.com/nasm
      LCC (free C compiler).........http://www.remcomp.com/lcc-win32

      PTC video engine.........................http://www.gaffer.org
      3D engines..........http://cg.cs.tu-berlin.de/~ki/engines.html
      Documents...............http://www.neutralzone.org/home/faqsys
      File format collection...................http://www.wotsit.org

  Magazines:

      Amber...............................http://amber.bti.pl/di_mag
      Amnesia...............http://amnesia-dist.future.easyspace.com
      Demojournal....................http://demojournal.planet-d.net
      Eurochart.............................http://www.eurochart.org
      Heroin...................................http://www.heroin.net
      Hugi........................................http://www.hugi.de
      Music Massage......................http://www.scene.cz/massage
      Planet Chartmag............http://www.agravedict.art.pl/planet
      Pain..................................http://pain.planet-d.net
      Scenial...........................http://www.scenial.scene.org
      Shine...............................http://www.shine.scene.org
      Static Line................http://www.scenespot.org/staticline
      Sunray..............................http://sunray.planet-d.net
      Total Disaster...................http://www.totaldisaster.w.pl
      TUHB.......................................http://www.tuhb.org
      WildMag...........................http://www.wildmag.notrix.de

  Parties:

      Assembly (Finland).....................http://www.assembly.org
      Ambience (The Netherlands)..............http://www.ambience.nl
      Dreamhack (Sweden)....................http://www.dreamhack.org
      Buenzli (Switzerland)......................http://www.buenz.li
      Gravity (Poland)............http://www.demoscena.cp.pl/gravity
      Mekka-Symposium (Germany)...................http://ms.demo.org
      Takeover (The Netherlands).............,http://www.takeover.nl
      The Party (Denmark).....................http://www.theparty.dk

  Others:

      Demo secret parts....http://www.inf.bme.hu/~mandula/secret.txt
      Textmode Demo Archive.................http://tmda.planet-d.net
      Arf!Studios..........................http://www.arfstudios.org
      #coders..................................http://coderz.cjb.net
      Demonews Express.........http://www.teeselink.demon.nl/express
      Demo fanclub........................http://jerware.org/fanclub
      Digital Undergrounds.....................http://dug.iscool.net
      Doose charts...............................http://www.doose.dk
      Freax................................http://freax.scene-hu.com
      GfxZone............................http://gfxzone.planet-d.net
      PC-demos explained.....http://www.oldskool.org/demos/explained
      Pixel...................................http://pixel.scene.org

  IRC Channels:

      Scene.........................................ircnet #thescene
      Programming.....................................ircnet #coders
      Programming....................................efnet #flipcode
      Graphics.........................................ircnet #pixel
      Music.............................................ircnet #trax
      Scene (French)..................................ircnet #demofr
      Programming (French)............................ircnet #codefr
      Graphics (French)..............................ircnet #pixelfr
      Scene (Hungarian)............................ircnet #demoscene
      Programming (Hungarian)......................ircnet #coders.hu
      Programming (German)........................ircnet #coders.ger


--=--=--
----=--=------=--=------=--=------=--=------=--=------=--=------=--=------
  Editor:            Coplan / D. Travis North / coplan@scenespot.org
  Columnists:        Coplan / D. Travis North / coplan@scenespot.org
                      Dilvish / Eric Hamilton / dilvie@yahoo.com
                      Gekko / Gergely Kutenich / mont@tar.hu
                      Psitron / Tim Soderstrom / tigerhawk@stic.net
                      Setec / Jesper Pederson / jesped@post.tele.dk
                      Seven / Stefaan VanNieuwenhuyze/ seven7@writeme.com
                      SiN / Ian Haskin / sin@netcom.ca
                      Subliminal / Matt Friedly / sub@plazma.net
                      Tryhuk / Tryhuk Vojtech / xtryhu00@stud.fee.vutbr.cz
  Technical Consult: Ranger Rick / Ben Reed / ranger@scenespot.org

  Static Line on the Web:  http://www.scenespot.org/staticline

  Static Line Subscription Management:
     http://www.scenespot.org/mailman/listinfo/static_line


     If you would like to contribute an article to Static Line, be aware
  that we will format your article with two spaces at the beginning and one
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  (coplan@scenespot.org).

     See you next month!

-eof---=------=--=------=--=--