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_//\\________________________________________________________________________
_\\__T_A_T_I_C___L_I_N_E_______________________________________ August, 2001
__\\_________________________________________________________________________
\\//__ Monthly Scene E-Zine ________________________________ 228 Subscribers
_____________________________________________________________________________


--=--=--
--=--=------=--=------=--=----
  Table Of Contents
----=--=------=--=------=--=--
     Opening:
           Message From the Editor
           Letters From Our Readers
     Features:
        The DemoDVD Project
        The Attitude of the Scene
     Columns:
        Music:
           In Tune -- "Passion on Craq" by Mickrip
           The Listener -- Music by Wave, Nox Luce and Mickrip
           Retro Tunage -- "Purgatory" by Chris Jarvis
        Demo:
           Screen Lit Vertigo -- Demos by Alien Prophets, Fairlight
                                 and MGDesign
        General:
           Software Sense -- The Next Step in Tracking
           Editorial -- Scene or Scenes?
           Link List -- Get Somewhere in the Scene
        Closing:
           Credits

--=--=--
--=--=------=--=------=--=----
  Message From the Editor
----=--=------=--=------=--=--

     Crazy!  The world is crazy!  As is my life as of late.

     This is being released on time, however, and so it doesn't appear as
  though my life is that crazy.  The good news is that life is starting to
  become a bit normal again, and hopefully that means no more future
  delays in the creation of Static Line.  It will also hopefully mean that
  I can get back to development for SceneSpot.  Mind you, I need to finish
  building my other computer first.  Cross your fingers.  Meanwhile,
  please realize that SceneSpot is unfinished, but you can use it all you
  wish.  The advantage is that you can help dictate what happens next, and
  what tools get thrown into the mix.  You can help us to become the scene
  resource that we intend to be.

     Anyhow...this months issue is a good one.  Psitron is back, but fear
  not, he's not on a soap box this month.  He's actually doing a nice
  little review of the next generation trackers: Buzz and Psychle (a bit
  more than I got into several months ago).  We also have a nice little
  article about the scene attitude from Darkfury.  And for those of you
  who like scene collections, you'll want to read up on the information
  about the DemoDVD project.  In addition to all these features this
  month, we also have lots of tunes and demos to review (Seven went out of
  his way this month, and reviewed three demos).  So read on, and enjoy
  yourself.

     Until next month...

                --Coplan


--=--=--
--=--=------=--=------=--=----
  The DemoDVD Project
  By: Phoenix
----=--=------=--=------=--=--

     Hornet (the former demo archive group) and Fusecon (co-creator of the
  Audiophonik CD) are hard at work on a new DVD (Digital Video Disc) that
  will show several hours of PC demos.

  The DVD is dual-purposed and thus will have two sides:

     - Side 1: Modern, "eye-candy" demos.  These are geared to grab the
       attention of everyone, including your non-scene friends and family.

     - Side 2: Classic, "oldskool" demos.  These are the demos you just
       can't get running anymore, and you'll get a kick out of watching
       again, even if others just might think you're crazy!

     Note that this will be an actual video DVD, one that you can watch on
  your TV!  But of course, if you want the original files, they will be on
  DVD too. You can expect all kinds of features, not limited to:

     - Optional commentaries on the demos while they play
     - Menu screens to select each demo
     - Alternate audio tracks with both original and remastered soundtracks
     - A short documentary on the demoscene
     - Several hidden surprises

  For more information, please visit the website:

     http://www.demodvd.org

     It will be updated with the latest news on the project.  Be sure to
  read the FAQ section, it will answer most of your questions!

     Currently, the important section of the website is the survey.
  Please help us out by completing the online survey!  Here you can help
  us choose which demos you want to see on the DVD!  You can also tell us
  how we should present them, and what quality tradeoffs you'll be happy
  with.

     When voting on the survey, keep in mind that this DVD will focus on
  PC demos only.  If it is successful, we would like to make further
  volumes for Amiga, C64, and maybe even intros!  We'll just have to see
  what the future holds.

     For technical DemoDVD questions, feel free to contact Trixter
  (trixter@oldskool.org), or to give us permission to include your group's
  demos (or just to say hello :), you can contact Phoenix (email below).

     Thanks for your help!

                --Phoenix, DemoDVD team
                  (phoenix@hornet.org)


--=--=--
--=--=------=--=------=--=----
  The Attitude of the Scene
  By: DarkFury
----=--=------=--=------=--=--

     While this may not be on the forefront of everyones mind, I feel that
  the sluggish activity in the majority of the scene is a good cause to
  raise this thesis to discussion. To begin, many wonder where the scene
  is going. It is in decline, rebirth or just about any other change that
  we can concieve the scene going through. While talking about all this is
  fine for discussion, the truth remains that the actual state of the
  scene is about the collective attitudes and efforts of the sceners
  themselves.

     Many attitudes are prevelant lately. Some prefer that the scene become
  more elitist, as it once was and in many ways still is. Others venture
  towards the philosophy that the use of modern technology is destroying
  the scene. Yet others whole-heartedly encourage new technology as the
  way of the future. Still others either promote or discourage the
  addition to the scene of so-called 'newbies'. All in all, these
  attitudes have there place. While these conflicting opinions should
  encourage a bit of rivalry, they are completely unproductive as
  pointless debates. While I won't and can't say any particular attitude
  is wrong, I WILL explain why they have no place as the focus of
  demoscene, collectively or as individuals.

     While I haven't been witness to the birth of the scene, I was aware
  of the technological enviroment of the time. At that time, doing
  anything that the well known demo groups could do was an accomplishment,
  no matter how simplistic it is to do these things now. Now, that the
  technology IS more advanced, but rather than continuing to push the
  limits of the hardware, and doing amazing things with it, we've resigned
  to using standardized APIs. We've begun to fall prey to the real danger
  of technology. Some already know where I'm headed with this. Of course,
  I'm referring to the idea that if we don't understand and control
  technology ourselves, we are truly slaves to it.

     I'm all for using new hardware, it's amazing what can be done when
  you have a seperate processor for graphics, sound and core mathematics.
  If the coders of the early 90s had access to this kind of equipment,
  while still having the attitudes they did at that time, I wouldn't have
  been suprised to see productions 100 times better than those we see
  today. Why would I dare to say this? Because something is fundamentally
  different in our new attitudes. We're satisfied and placated. We don't
  push for innovation any longer, we wait for it.

     For the newbies in all areas, I'll address specifically that while
  it is tough to become good at what your doing, that's no excuse to take
  an easy way out. Doing things the hard way is what made the scene what
  it is. You can be one of the most intelligent people out there, but if
  you aren't willing to take the time and gain the experience required,
  you'll never become as good at what your doing as someone who has. Part
  of not only becoming a scener, but growing up, is doing things that are
  tough. Making decisions you'd rather not and having standards and goals
  for yourself are only a few of the things you must have in order to go
  anywhere in not only the scene, but in life as well. Secondly, there are
  more newbies in the scene who are willing to learn everything it takes
  to be good. To these I offer encouragement, and a promise that if you're
  serious about what you're doing, you'll go far, even if you're not
  recognized in the scene, you'll have advanced yourself enough that you
  can tell you have gained so many invaluable skills. As advice to many of
  you, I will offer a simple explination about why so many texts, graphics
  and songs seemed so advanced. When you begin, you're in a normal frame
  of mind, but as you gain experience you'll soon learn a completely
  different way of thinking. Developing logic, an ear for sounds or an eye
  for colors and techniques are just a few of the first steps that must be
  taken. Developing a good foundation in the area you are working is more
  important than doing the most advanced thing in your field. Don't try to
  skip something because you'd rather jump right into doing what you want.
  It pays off to have learned the tedious things later when you need to
  know them. Many have asked for tutorials, books and other refrences.
  This is a good first step, but keep in mind that there isn't a refrence
  for everything. Some skills are only gained through pratice and hard
  work. I hope this article brings some motivation to those of you who see
  the scene and recognize the state it's in.

     Now, of those who are older sceners, very few of the coders I have
  found have passion for the wetware of their programs, the fruit of their
  labors. They're caught up in doing everything else they need to and see
  coding as something they'll put off till they have the time. This is how
  it has to be sometimes, but many don't return to coding when they have
  the oppurtunity. Similarly, many trackers, while still continuing to
  refine their skills, are splitting away from the demoscene in favor of a
  purely musical scene. All the daily active scene related sites I once
  visited are now strictly music scene. Graphicians, especially pixelers,
  are all the more rare. Collectively, the scene is pulling itself apart
  because it doesn't know what to do without a community that is active in
  simply making differences, changes and moving forward. We argue and
  complain about how everything is or ought to be, but yet that hasn't
  revived the scene, has it?

     Did the Death of DOS bring this situation to the scene? I pose this
  question in all sincerity. Until the downfall of DOS, the scene appeared
  healthy as ever. With the new attitude that Win 9x is the way to go, or
  for some Linux, we no longer have to work as hard.
  User/Coder-friendliness has replaced the once renowned art of learning
  the ins-and-outs of this wonderous machine.

     Personally, I still code for DOS. I see no problem with it's lack of
  hardware support or incompatibility problems. While Win and Linux may
  have advantages to DOS in every area, they can't replace the power
  achievable in DOS. If I want support for a card, I'll write the drivers
  myself. This not only delievers a challenge I'd never even need to
  consider in a Win enviroment but improves my skills and my knowledge.
  While I understand many hobby coders would not consider this a practical
  decision. I am not a hobby coder. The only better control I could have
  over a computer would be to write my own BIOS and OS. With this in mind,
  some will ask how exactly I can say I don't mind incompatibility issues.
  Honestly, by writing drivers and libraries that comply with the very
  standards the hardware itself must follow. It's much more involved and
  in-depth a process than to call an API. So for those who wish no such
  involvement in such an archaic method of programming, you're welcome to
  write whatever you want, however you want, for whatever platform you
  wish. I'll still watch a demo no matter what platform it's released on.
  I'll watch it if it's music is tracked or MP3. I'll watch hardware
  accelerated demos or demos with completely software rendered graphics. I
  don't see a problem with any of these things. But for me, I'll highly
  respect some one who can do all this and more under DOS or better yet,
  their own OS.

     Demo coding was never just about how pretty the graphics are, or how
  well the music plays, but what the CODER had to do to make that tweaked
  VGA graphic routine astounding or get that track to play at 44khz with
  32 active channels. For a tracker, I must say I thought tracking was
  about writing modules. Trackers had always been more than JUST
  musicians. They were specialized because they could do music in an
  ungodly format that never would create the equivalent of music played by
  hand. They could use a limited set of effects and still make sounds to
  shake the soul. Finally, for graphicians, I've seen some great pixelling
  now that we have tools like Photoshop, but I've also seen graphics that
  are nothing but composites of scans, and images that are nothing but
  blurs. While all of the alternatives to doing everything by hand are
  valid and can still produce some astounding results, I'll still hold
  that human creativity, resourcefulness and dedication are what we're
  really missing now. We aren't doing things in an intelligent manner that
  only organic life is capable of. We're becoming restricted to the
  actions of the machines we created simply because we've become too lazy
  to continue understanding the ever increasing complexity of the system.
  Until we return to this pivotal state of mind in the scene, it will
  never be what it once was. As our roots are in the realm of crackers and
  hackers I'll quote the jargon file to finish my statement. Hopefully,
  this definition will reiterate my sentiments in a bit more condensed
  manner.


  -=- Notes -=-

  hacker  -- n. [originally, someone who makes furniture with an axe] 1. A
  person who enjoys exploring the details of programmable systems and how
  to stretch their capabilities, as opposed to most users, who prefer to
  learn only the minimum necessary. 2. One who programs enthusiastically
  (even obsessively) or who enjoys programming rather than just theorizing
  about programming. 3. A person capable of appreciating hack value. 4. A
  person who is good at programming quickly. 5. An expert at a particular
  program, or one who frequently does work using it or on it; as in `a
  Unix hacker'. (Definitions 1 through 5 are correlated, and people who
  fit them congregate.) 6. An expert or enthusiast of any kind. One might
  be an astronomy hacker, for example. 7. One who enjoys the intellectual
  challenge of creatively overcoming or circumventing limitations. 8.
  [deprecated] A malicious meddler who tries to discover sensitive
  information by poking around. Hence `password hacker', network hacker'.
  The correct term for this sense is cracker.

     The term `hacker' also tends to connote membership in the global
  community defined by the net (see the network and Internet address). For
  discussion of some of the basics of this culture, see the How To Become
  A Hacker (http://www.tuxedo.org/~esr/faqs/hacker-howto.html) FAQ. It
  also implies that the person described is seen to subscribe to some
  version of the hacker ethic (see hacker ethic).

     It is better to be described as a hacker by others than to describe
  oneself that way. Hackers consider themselves something of an elite (a
  meritocracy based on ability), though one to which new members are
  gladly welcome. There is thus a certain ego satisfaction to be had in
  identifying yourself as a hacker (but if you claim to be one and are
  not, you'll quickly be labeled bogus). See also wannabee.

     This term seems to have been first adopted as a badge in the 1960s by
  the hacker culture surrounding TMRC and the MIT AI Lab. We have a report
  that it was used in a sense close to this entry's by teenage radio hams
  and electronics tinkerers in the mid-1950s.


  -=- Closing -=-

     Finally, as I expect to get both loads of flames and hopefully some
  well thought out discussions on this article. I will conclude by asking,
  are we in the scene to be sceners, or does the scene exist because we're
  here to create demos and all of their related parts?

                --DarkFury/Nutropik
                  resonant@onebox.com


--=--=--
--=--=------=--=------=--=----
  In Tune
     "Passion on Craq" by Mickrip
  By:  Coplan
----=--=------=--=------=--=--

  -=- Introduction -=-
     It's strange how one finds good tunes.  Inspired by the fact that
  someone sent me a link for Fairlight Music, and the fact that Seven did
  a review of one of their demos this month, I jumped on their site.  I
  was actually on the site looking for the music for etTV, which was
  available, but I got side-tracked.  Mind you, I've never been to the
  Fairlight music site before.  So, I was almost catatonic to see that
  Mickrip was still releasing tunes.

     So I grabbed a bunch of his tunes.  And among them was this short
  little ditty:  "Passion on Craq".

  -=- The Tune -=-
     Mickrip is not going to be the best tracker you've ever heard.  But
  the man is well inspired, as he has turned out several good tunes in
  the past.  Thus I knew I would find something at least entertaining
  when I grabbed some of his latest works.  My first impression:  "The
  guy has made some drastic improvements in his tracking skills."

     Ironically, the last song I listened to from Mickrip was a tune
  called "Astrid", which I admire for its incredible inspiration.  The
  dynamics on that song are pretty incredible, and his methods are even
  more incredible.  In "Passion on Craq", the dynamics and methods are
  just as incredible, and much more entertaining.

     The song is short, but it doesn't need to be very long.  I don't
  exactly know how you would classify this tune on the big scheme of
  things.  I'm going to take a shot in the dark and say it's a cross
  between guitar rock, trance and hip hop, maybe even some club in there.

     The most notable element of this song is the percussion.  The song
  starts with a very filtered drum loop, and it gets brighter as time
  passes, and finally we get hit with the "real" percussion.  Occasionally
  throughout the song, you get exposed to the filtered loop again, and it
  adds to the dynamic of the tune.  The percussion is relatively simple
  otherwise, but it is tailored to every situation in the song.  It's well
  timed, well matched, and entirely well done.

     If you happen to be fortunate like myself, and you got a really good
  stereo system hooked up to your computer, you'll enjoy the base in this
  song.  My little 15" sub was happy to play this ditty, as it gave it a
  lot of exercise.  The base line in this tune is, again, pretty simple,
  but it is definately not boreing.  It bounces around, and generally does
  a lot to compliment the rest of the tune.

     The lead bothers me slightly.  It's good, don't get me wrong, but I
  have never been too satisfied with guitars in tracked music.  The
  dynamics of guitars are so very difficult to reproduce, you might as
  well use pre-recorded samples.  Instead, Mickrip uses pre-recorded
  riffs (very short ones), and blends them together ala the style used to
  create an  oldskool mod by the name of "Schwinging the swing"
  (schwing.mod -- author unknown, as my copy's message is confusing as
  hell).  It works, but you can tell that it was fitted, as opposed to
  recorded.  Mind you, it's a very difficult method of doing guitar...and
  it works better than recording one string -- but it isn't seamless.
  Mickrip, fortunately, did a wonderful job with what he used, and it
  came out okay.

  -=- Conclusion -=-

     All in all, I'm glad I grabbed the latest from Mickrip.  It's good to
  see that some guys are still around, and still tracking wonderfully.  If
  you're a Mickrip fan, or even if you're not, you'll want to grab this
  tune, as it is definately worth the download.  It's an IT too, so you'll
  be able to learn from him as well (but a very large IT file, so you
  remaining GUS people might have some minor problems).

  Song Information:
     Title:  Passion on Craq
     Author:  Mickrip
     Release date:  June 18, 2001
     Length:  2m33s
     File Size (zipped/unzipped):  1.4mb / 1.3mb
     Source:  http://fairlight.scene.org



                --Coplan

     "In Tune" is a regular column dedicated to the review of original and
  singular works by fellow trackers.  It is to be used as a tool to expand
  your listening and writing horizons, but should not be used as a general
  rating system.  Coplan's opinions are not the opinions of the Static
  Line Staff.

     If you have heard a song you would like to recommend (either your own,
  or another person's), We can be contacted through e-mail useing the
  addresses found in the closing notes.  Please do not send files attached
  to e-mail without first contacting us.  Thank you!


--=--=--
--=--=------=--=------=--=----
  The Listener
    Music by Wave, Nox Luce and Mickrip
  By:  Tryhuk
----=--=------=--=------=--=--

     Sometime words flow easily and you've got to hold them not to spill
  out of the editor's window. But this month it is going to be rather a
  second case, when I have almost nothing to say. At least almost nothing.

     After a long time I visited a homepage of Maniacs of Noise and I was
  pleased by a few new songs by Wave, released in June. They are of his
  usual style and  although I don't feel like they would fall among my
  favorite, it is nice to hear something different again and remind on the
  good old times of five musicians and their awesome releases. Wild drums
  and nice melodies in two waves heading into your head. Try them, they
  won't hurt you.

     Then of course, my attention was stolen by "Night Light" brought to
  you by Nox Luce aka Norfair. I wanted to mention it before but it didn't
  fall into my path and now if you want to hear a review, you'll have
  to visit the goodstuff site (http://konsumer.de/goodstuff/).

     Last track that catch my eye is "Tribute To Paddo" by Mickrip
  released through Fairlight. It is a song with a guitar and strings only
  and although it isn't special in any way, I have to admit, that it
  belonged among the best stuff out of the latest scene releases that I've
  heard. Maybe I'm influenced by my memory on his previous songs from the
  times of Analogue and Stage 9, but after hearing most of the songs that
  he made during the time since then, I've got to say that this one is a
  bit special among them.

     I'm afraid that's all. I had a busy month, I was also on holidays and
  so most of the scene music I heard during July was on the Nectarine
  radio which is better and better with every day passing since its start.
  If you have a chance, give it a try because you'll get to songs that you
  wouldn't normally download.

  Song Information:
    Title:  Nectatrine radio
    Source:  http://www.scenemusic.net


--=--=--
--=--=------=--=------=--=----
  Retro Tunage
    "Purgatory" by Chris Jarvis
  By:  Tryhuk
----=--=------=--=------=--=--

     Yesterday I had a 24th birthday and now I feel very nostalgic. I
  thought this will be the best time to write a review for retro tunage
  and while meditating about storytelling I sat down to a computer and
  after a long time I run Cubic Player once again. I searched for a track
  that would fit into my current mood and which is special in some way and
  I didn't have to search for too long.

     The track, actually two tracks, I chose are Purgatory Opening and
  Closing  theme written by Chris Jarvis and made for a short movie by
  Terry McMullin and Marko Keser.

     Four minute long Opening theme is inspired a lot by Heat Miser from
  Massive Attack. Chris borrows a lot from the original track and one could
  almost call it a remix of the original track. But what a good remix!
  In the beginning he sets up a sensible tempo and he keeps it for the
  whole track. During the track he varies petty instrumentation and only
  the piano remains as the main instrument of the song. Same as a film
  maker having its lead character on which he concentrates. I think this
  is the best way to get someone into a story, set a tempo and a direction
  even without having to show much in the movie. Music is great narrators
  instrument and many people forget that.

     The closing theme is twice as long as the opening one and uses a
  similar style of instrumentation. In the beginning, the author evokes a
  water drop feeling brought not only by piano hits, but also with
  repeated brass and well picked percussion accompanied by many real life
  sounds that fill the space and give it a more full feeling. The piano
  appears more and more often like a few drops turning into a stream and
  gathering grains of sand with. The stream strengthens and behaves like a
  destiny in a real life - sometime we have a choice and sometimes we
  don't.

     As you can see, I have my own vision behind the songs and I believe
  this is how good music should sound. Try to see through my eyes or
  find your own point of view. Or maybe find yourself the movie, which
  I haven't seen. I only know that I like these two tracks and that they
  belong among my favorite three tunes by chris jarvis. The third one is
  "Northern Sky" which is probably his best track and which belongs among
  the best tracked songs though I haven't mentioned it here yet. So if you
  decide to try some releases of this oldskool tracker, add this one
  to your download list.

  Song Information:
    Title:  Purgatory
    Author:  Chris Jarvis
    Release date:  1998
    Length:  4m14s + 8m17s
    Filename (zipped/unzipped):  Cj-purg.zip / cj-purg1.it + cj-purg2.it
    File Size (zipped/unzipped):  1.5mb / 1.2mb + 1.9mb
    Source:  Any site with releases from Analogue. For example scene.org.

                --Tryhuk


--=--=--
--=--=------=--=------=--=----
  Screen Lit Vertigo
     Demos by Alien Prophets, Fairlight and MGDesign
  By:  Seven
----=--=------=--=------=--=--

  -=- Unnamed Demo by Alien Prophets (party-version) -=-
  Found at www.scene.org
  1st place at the Scene Event 01 democompo.

  System requirements: 3 MB HD, Windows, 3D card

  Test Machine: PIII 900 192MB, SB1024, GeForce 2MX 32MB, Win98

  The Credits:
     Code: Jar, Gaia
     Graphics: Shifter
     Music: Nudge

  The Demo:
     Alien Prophets have won the Scene Event democompo with a demo that has
  no name. I wonder how we're supposed to vote for it in the charts :) It
  features mainly disconnected 3D effects, with no story or theme. Some
  nice ones are a mass of chemical-notation style molecules in a tunnel
  (or maybe it's a single big one), a cool yellow-transparant 3D
  printboard or maze-like thingy, and the very best variation on metaballs
  I've seen since ages. The objects are all abstract, such as
  self-intersecting morphing blobs, a flock of yellow bricks, or plastic
  spikey balls, with no rooms or environments.

     On the 2D side there's the usual snow/line interference and an
  oldskool text-plasma. The background pictures are either very abstract,
  or granular photos of a technical nature, such as buildings, or a
  computer,... There's also a picture at the start of a girl that is
  replaced by an alien.

     The music is IDM, with the usual instruments plus a stuttering voice
  sample, and reminds me of the Moral Hard Candy soundtrack. There are
  long quiet parts, alternated with a frenzy of percussion, and the demo
  is synced to those changes nicely: both when switching effects, and when
  changing camera positions within effects.

  Overall:
     This unnamed production is quite original for a 3D demo, although I
  would have liked it to be a bit longer. But the readme.txt says "No
  time. 8 minutes till deadline", and we know the relentlessness of
  deadlines :(  It is recommended that you check out this demo!


  -=- etTV by Fairlight (final version) -=-
  Found at www.scene.org
  1st place at the Remedy 2001 accelerated democompo

  System requirements:
     7 MB HD, Windows 9X,2k,ME Pentium 233, 64 MB, Direct-X 8.0 The 3D
  card should support multitexturing. Another final that works on Voodoo
  cards should be released later.
  (An info file *with requirements listed*! We love you, Fairlight!)

  Test Machine: PIII 900 192MB, SB1024, GeForce 2MX 32MB, Win98

  The Credits:
     Code: Pantaloon
     Music: Andromeda
     Graphics: Graffik
     3D: Pantaloon, Aln

  The Demo:
     Fairlight is getting better and better in making PC demos. With etTV
  (E.T. as in alien), your computer has been taken over by a TV broadcast
  from the typical extraterrestrials with overdeveloped heads, large
  bambi-eyes and sharp fangs. They seem to like all kinds of tunnel
  effects, multi-textured transparent ones, solid square tunnels with a
  spiral of lights in the middle, and even the old software-variant with
  multiple tunnels colliding and splitting. Other 3D parts include several
  spherical layers with morphing holes around a flare (looks better then
  it sounds), a metallic alien fetus in a green aquarium that kills the
  framerate, trails of lights circling around something that looks like a
  fat sunflower,... There are also some lines of poetry shown, fading out
  too fast to read them all and thereby forcing you to rewatch the demo
  (Clever designers, indeed).

     etTV has several excellent pictures, starting with the pixeled
  Fairlight logo in the setup box. Then there are the small alien
  portraits in the credits, a magnificent full-screen alien head (with
  added spherical zoom effect) and a couple of desolate outerspace
  landscapes.

     The music is hard to describe for me. It changes tempo a few times,
  but overall it's quite ambient, with a slow flute and a repeated pattern
  of beeps in the foregrond, and percussion in the background. It fits the
  demo well. Syncing is mostly done via a tv-snow effect making the
  transition between different parts, but it's used a bit too often for my
  taste. There's also a nice chiptune played at the setup menu (seems to
  be the new hype, and I like it), but sometimes it isn't played. Maybe a
  bug?

  For the people with too much time on their hands: keep pencil and paper
  ready at the start, because the credits are shown both in alien and in
  human-readable font. This is the key to decipher the numerous alien
  messages in the backgrounds. One of the more visible reads "vote for
  fairlight at remedy". (No sir, we did NOT use subliminal messages to
  influence the audience).

  Overall:
     There's a little bit of everything in etTV: 3D environments, poetry,
  a theme, pictures, 3D accelerated oldskool effects... Fairlight also
  keeps some good old  habits alive, such as using effects in the
  background instead of static photos or "stylish" patterns, and showing
  full-screen hand-drawn (maybe slightly photoshopped) pictures. The
  variation results in a demo that is much less boring than a pure 3D
  cameraflight / pure flatcolored design / pure morphing objects kind of
  demo. So everyone, download this, watch it and learn.


  -=- I Can Fly by MGDesign (final version) -=-
  Found at demos.mgdesign.org
  1st place at the VIP3 democompo

  System requirements: 10 MB HD,  400+ MHZ CPU, 128 MB RAM, OpenGL 1.2.1
  compatible 3d card with 32 MB mem (best with latest drivers)

  Test Machine: PIII 900 192MB, SB1024, GeForce 2MX 32MB, Win98

  The Credits:
     Code: Nico
     3D: Christian, Nante, UKW, Theo
     Gfx: Theo, UKW
     Music: Hiscan, Candle

  The Demo:
     MGDesign had to make several patches before I Can Fly wanted to run
  everywhere, but the third one worked for me (after also installing the
  latest detonator drivers for my vidcard). And was it worth the wait?
  Yep, sure it is! After choosing whether you want to preload all data
  (requires more memory), or to load data during the demo (may cause
  slowdowns), an oldskool loading screen is shown. It's a low-res
  starfield with a pixeled logo, their motto "In code we trust" and a
  short looping tune, but no progress bar.

     The demo itself has some hefty 3D. There are some scenes that bring
  my GF2MX to a crawling speed (<10 FPS): inside a large mosque with light
  shining through hundreds of windows, and a flight over a complex and
  fairly detailed city. During that city flight, there's even a second
  window in the corner, showing a different camera path. Luckily most
  parts require less horsepower. I like the beginning a lot: a very nice
  rounded 3D logo, surrounded by strings of cute-looking starry objects.
  The starts throw shadows on the logo, and everything has matching pastel
  colors. To show the credits, a MGDesign logo dissolves in a cloud of
  cubes, some of which are textured with aliases or professions. Besides a
  few logos and the detailed textures, there are no standalone pictures
  used. There's one green "I Can Fly" screen near the start, but it
  flashes by so quickly I almost didn't notice it.

     The main soundtrack is a rock song by Candle, the music band by the
  brother of Theo. Nice to see that some people take the effort to make
  their own soundtracks, rather than ripping some commercial hit, Anyway
  the song isn't bad, but the syncing seems to go wrong in some places,
  example: that green logo. There are also two short looping .XMs, one for
  the loading, one for the ending.

  Overall:
  I Can Fly has a few shortcomings: the bad syncing, the fact that you
  can't change the high default resolution (could help those poor souls
  with less-powerfull 3D cards), and that you've got to press escape to
  stop :/ But the demo has some impressive parts, especially if you keep
  in mind that this is MGDesigns first PC demo (They did an Amiga demo,
  Dimension, 5 years ago). So, make sure to get this, or to download the
  patch at demos.mgdesign.org if the party version didn't work on your
  machine.

                --Seven


--=--=--
--=--=------=--=------=--=----
  Software Sense
     The Next Step in Tracking
  By: Psitron
----=--=------=--=------=--=--

     It has been quite some time since I have submitted an article. And for
  those of you who regularly read my ramblings, I apologize - to all three
  of you.  =) In the scene, I have never been much on excuses, but,
  suffice to say, life  stepped in (in a very good way, I might add), and
  my time and even participation  in the scene has, until recently,
  dwindled. Though, I had hoped to release this  article last month -
  unfortunately it was lost a few days before the deadline.  In a
  nutshell, I apologize for being away - most of it could not be helped,
  but  I wish to inform you that I am back with quite a few new articles
  up my sleeve.

     For those of you who read my usual articles, you may remember that I
  have  addressed the limitations of current generation trackers, such as
  Fast Tracker  or Impulse Tracker - and expressed my opinions on what a
  next generation tracker  might have. How would one, for example, address
  the issues of using complex effects without having to go to an external
  sample editor? If you recall my articles expressed thought about using
  such things as macros. While not exactly using such an idea, two 'next
  generation' trackers have taken the idea many  steps further by adding a
  visual element to structuring sounds and effects.

     These two rather unique trackers are called Buzz Tracker (or simply
  Buzz, if you prefer) and Psycle. Unlike a conventional tracker, which
  is limited in precision and number of effects, Buzz and Psycle have
  eliminated this brick wall that has recently irritated many newer
  musicians. How do they work, one might ask?

     The idea is quite simple, really, but not necessarily new. For those
  of you who are on a budget, like me, you may have played around with a
  few soft-synths, which used a visual approach to making sounds. Buzz
  and Psycle work the exact same way, as a matter of fact, but includes
  the tracker element and the ability to use samples. Essentially what
  one can do is create complex sounds by linking different machines
  together. Take this, for eaxmple:

      -------        -------        --------        --------
     | 303   |----->| Delay |----->| Filter |----->| Master |
      -------        -------        --------        --------

     The above uses a soft-synth machine called 303 and adds two machines,
  delay and filter which modify the sound. In the case of Buzz, what makes
  it so powerful is that you can modify the characteristics of almost
  every machine using pattern-data which can then be sequenced together.
  Psycle can do a similar thing, too, but this is partially where they
  differ.

     It is important to note that Buzz and Psycle use the same fundamental
  ideas, but use different approaches. Buzz is a more radial approach
  where one  creates a series of patterns for EACH machine. You then can
  mix all these  patterns in the master order list (which is very similar
  to a large pattern).  For example:

          |   303  |  Delay  |   Filter  | Master    |
     0000 |   00   |   00    |     ..    | Fade-In   |
     0016 |   01   |   00    |    00     |   ..      |
     0032 |   02   |   00    |    02     |   ..      |
     0064 |   02   |   01    |    01     | Fade-Out  |

     As you can see, what is happening is that the machine 303 has three
  patterns  which, in this example, carry the melody. The Delay is then
  modified in the  third pattern while the entire song fades out. A
  particular unique idea that  Buzz uses is the ability to name patterns.
  This helps immensely when one wants  to, for example, name patterns
  according to chords (to thereby be able to glance  at the order list and
  know the chord progression easily), or in the above  example, to easily
  see what effects one is doing (Fading in and out). As one can  see, it
  becomes very easy to create complex, dynamic, music by merely layering
  the melody with different effects and modifying both of these elements,
  often at  the same time, by having the ability to have each and every
  machine have it's  own patterns.

     Psycle seems to, at least, so far (since it is still in beta stages)
  utilizes a  more conventional approach. Instead of having each machine
  have it's own pattern  and sequencing this pattern into a master order
  list (like Buzz), Psycle has an order list more like a conventional
  tracker. Each machine has it's own channel in a single pattern.
  Compared to Buzz, this sounds rather plain and almost  antiquated.
  Actually, however, one of the main problems of Buzz is that it is so
  powerful it becomes rather a burden to create complex melodies easily.
  Since each machine has it's own pattern, one must jump around different
  machines quite extensively. In Psycle everything is in front of you,
  and thus, one can track  much more quickly and easily. This advantage is
  important with styles that  usually have a complex melody, but for
  electronic music, which is often repetitive and layered, Buzz seems to
  be more useful.

     It is important to remember, however, that Buzz (as well as Psycle) is
  commonly not a replacement, but a supplement. A common practice is to
  use Buzz like a soft-synth and import the created sounds into, say,
  Impulse Tracker,  where one can further create the song in a more
  conventional manner. One can go  the other way, of course, but I have
  yet to find a machine for Buzz that imports  Impulse Tracker modules
  specifically. However, because of Buzz (and Psycle's)  modularization,
  one could just simply write a machine which would do just that. It
  probably is not actually that simple to do so, but, nonetheless, it can
  be done.

     There you have it - a brief little glimpse of two extremely powerful
  and innovative tools in the tracker's arsenal. I hope that this will
  inspire you to, if you have not already, download a copy of either Buzz
  or Psycle and give it a try. They are worth the download, even on my
  slow connection... =)

                --PsiTron


--=--=--
--=--=------=--=------=--=----
  Editorial
     Scene or Scenes?
  By: Coplan
----=--=------=--=------=--=--

     I remember several years ago when the "Scene" referred to one of two
  things:  PC Demoscene, or the Amiga Demoscene.  Many people would
  consider them synonymous, the only difference being the hardware you
  used.  And each included any element utilized to create a demo:
  graphics (GFX), music (trax) and code.

     Is everything still together?  Or do we have multiple scenes now?

     It doesn't really matter, in the long run, how the scenes are
  organized.  The only time it would really matter is when you wanted to
  find something.  After all, the music scene has taken its own path as
  of late, and it very often has nothing to do with demos.  About 98% of
  the music available will never be used for a demo.  And most of that
  doesn't even have potential, as it just might not be the right kind of
  music for a demo.  So is that music still part of the demoscene?
  Probably not.

     But as I said, it doesn't really matter.

     Occasionally, someone will jump on their soap box and preach about
  the fact that the demoscene should once again be united.  Or they might
  try to persuade people to avoid MP3s, as they don't seamlessly fit into
  a demo.  Or someone might point out that the music released these days
  sound (believe it or not) too real.  Why are these issues?  Is it really
  a bad thing that the music scene has taken its own course of action?  Is
  it really terrible that the music has its own identity now?

     I write music using a tracking program.  I write music for the
  benefit of myself.  It's a good hobby to have, and I share only a
  fraction of the music that I write.  I listen to other people's music
  for the same reason.  Unless I'm trying to learn a technique...I don't
  care how it was written.  I only care that I can play it on my
  computer.  So what's the big deal?  The scene may have mutated a bit,
  but to me, it's still a great place to be.

                --Coplan


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

  Portals:

      Orange Juice.............................http://www.ojuice.net
      Scene.org.................................http://www.scene.org
      SceneSpot.............................http://www.scenespot.org
      CFXweb.......................................http://cfxweb.net
      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
      Danish Scene..............................http://demo-scene.dk
      Hungarian Scene........................http://www.scene-hu.com
      Italian Scene...........................http://run.to/la_scena
      ModPlug Central Resources..........http://www.castlex.com/mods
      Norvegian Scene............http://www.neutralzone.org/scene.no
  <*> Planet Zeus..........................http://www.planetzeus.net
      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.au.scene.org
      Scene.org Netherlands...................ftp://ftp.nl.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
      Bypass.................................http://bypass.scene.org
      Calodox.................................http://www.calodox.org
      Cocoon..............................http://cocoon.planet-d.net
      Confine.................................http://www.confine.org
      Damage...................................http://come.to/damage
      Delirium..............................http://delirium.scene.pl
      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
      Freestyle............................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://www.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
  <*> Outbreak................................http://www.outbreak.nu
      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
      Spinning Kids......................http://www.spinningkids.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.de
      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
  <*> Fairlight Music.....................http://fairlight.scene.org
      Five Musicians.........................http://www.fm.scene.org
      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
      pHluid..................................http://phluid.acid.org
      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://tokyodawn.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
      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
      TUHB.......................................http://www.tuhb.org
  <U> WildMag..................................http://www.wildmag.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
      Underground Mine.............http://www.spinningkids.org/umine

  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
  Writers:         Coplan / D. Travis North / coplan@scenespot.org
                    Dilvish / Eric Hamilton / dilvie@yahoo.com
                    Psitron / Tim Soderstrom / tigerhawk@stic.net
                    Setec / Jesper Pederson / jesped@post.tele.dk
                    Seven / Stefaan VanNieuwenhuyze/ seven7@writeme.com
                    Tryhuk / Tryhuk Vojtech / vojtech.tryhuk@worldonline.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
  space at the end of each line.  Please avoid foul language and high ascii
  characters.  Contributions should be mailed to Coplan
  (coplan@scenespot.org).

     See you next month!

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