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                       cRu|________\     |    |                   Issue #42
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 January, 2003                           ||    /  \ \__/   /   /   /___// |
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--=--=--
--=--=------=--=------=--=----
  Table Of Contents
----=--=------=--=------=--=--
     Opening:
        Message From the Editor
        Letters From Our Readers
     Features:
        Your View and Response -- Your Favorites (Replies / New Challenge)
        Mindcandy DVD -- In-Depth Review
        Mindcandy DVD -- Another View
        Party Report -- State of the Art
        Competition Announcement -- The Spectrum Music Competition
     Reviews:
        Music:
           The Lineup -- The Best of the Month
     Opinion / Commentary:
        Editorial -- Art All Around
        Early Dawn Reflections -- Unfinished Business
     Link List: Get Somewhere in the Scene
     Closing: Staff and Contact Information


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

     After a month off, we're back for another issue.  Initially, we held
  off the December issue pending the release of MindCandy.  By the time
  it came out, the holiday week was upon us, and my life got crazy.
  Sadly, I never got around to editing everything until the New Year
  celebration had passed.  So, it seems as though we missed a month.  But
  nevermind that, this is a great issue.

     This is also a rather unusual issue.  By the time I'm finished
  writing this message, it could potentially be our second or third
  largest issue of all time.  What makes that wierd is the fact that
  you'll notice that many of our regular columns are missing this month.
  We did this to make room for the important stuff.  A lot happened the
  past couple of months:  MindCandy, The State of the Art Demoparty, to
  name a few.  As tradition holds, December was not a very good month for
  new releases anyhow, so it  all works out in the end.

     Well, the big feature is the MindCandy review.  Seven was kind enough
  to review the disc for us in his official in-depth review.  The kind
  folks at Fusecon and Hornet (Dan "Pallbearer" Wright and Andy "Phoenix"
  Voss, specifically) sent Seven a nice little press package so that he
  could review the final product.  The postage system held things up a
  bit (big surprise), but it finally arrived in Seven's mailbox for him
  to review.  He sent me a very quick message that day stating that he
  had given up his ticket to see "Lord of the Rings:  The Two Towers"
  just so he could get started on the MindCandy review.  That would've
  been a hard decision for me to make, but I probably would've done the
  same thing.  Regardless, we're all glad that he had the time to review
  the product, and we've brought it to you this month.  I also did a
  small review which is published immediately after Seven's official
  review.  But if you had to choose between the two, read his.
  Information about getting your own copy of the DVD can be found at the
  official website:  http://www.mindcandydvd.com

     Seven was busy for this issue.  In addition to the incredible review
  of MindCandy, he also provided us with everyone's favorite feature
  article:  The Party Report.  This time around, he gives us a full
  account of his interaction with the "State of the Art" party.  As
  always, his reports give us a glimpse of what it was really like.

     For those of you looking for an internet based music competition,
  you'll want to check out the details on the Spectrum Music Competition.
  There's a chance that I might be one of the judges.

     There are many more things that you'll want to check out in this
  issue.  I think I've been rambling on too long as it is.  So just check
  out the table of contents, and read whatever suits your fancy.  Please
  note that the In Tune and Screen Lit Vertigo columns will return next
  month with fresh material.

     As always, articles can always be sent in plain text to
  coplan@scenespot.org.  News briefs can be submitted to SceneSpot at
  http://www.scenespot.org.

     Until Next time.

                --Coplan


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

  -=- A Message from Sergeeo -=-

     How's it going?

     I've just finished reading your Static Line e-zine #41 and...I've been
  looking for something like it for ages! Articles are incredibly pleasant
  and I must say that the ascii format is just perfect. I've found it as a
  very well-done work and I encourage you to keep on releasing it. I
  especially liked that article called "My addiction". In my opinion it
  expresses in a perfect way the tracking philosphy...and its problems :-)
  Every paradigm reveals its weakness sooner or later! A neat work this
  e-zine of yours! Well, I haven't introduced myself! I'm Sergio de Prado
  (aka sergeeo). I'm Spanish & I'm keen on tracking since '96 or so. I use
  to take a look around and upload tunes to www.modulez.org I love
  demostyle and chip music (I am now experimenting with Paragon 5) but I
  love all kinds of music. Let's go with the suggestions:

  -What about an article about the increasing number of releases of
     chipdisks?
  -It would be nice to review the whole trajectory of some ass-kicking
     trackers: Beek, Virt, Skaven...

     To sum up: keep up the good work!

     Best Regards:

                --Sergeeo of Niako


  -=- Reply From Coplan -=-

  Greetings Sergeeo,

     First off, I'm glad you like this little magazine that I carry under
  my wing.  We miss a couple of months here or there, but that's due to
  my busy schedule.  All in all, I always try to release a good quality
  issue, and I'm glad it's working out for some of our readers.

     As for Vill's Article (Inside My Mind:  My Addiction, Issue #41),
  that's a great read.  Vill submitted a sample article to me a couple
  months ago and I really enjoyed his style.  You're absolutely right, he
  catches the mood perfectly.  Unfortunately, he wasn't able to get
  anything in this month.  Nevermind that.  He'll be contributing when he
  can.  We all look forward to his next release.

     In response to your suggestions:  As far as the chipdisk article, I
  don't claim to be a chip tune expert.  I enjoy the style, but I don't
  feel that I know enough about it to write about it.  It's definately a
  widely respected art form, and one that isn't often done too
  effectively.  I'd love to have such an article, however.  Know of anyone
  willing to write it for me?  Your idea about an article reviewing a
  whole bunch of tunes from one artist is a good one.  I'll keep that in
  the back of my mind.  Maybe I'll do such a thing in a future edition of
  In Tune.

     As always, I enjoy your feedback.  I intend to be here for a while
  publishing Static Line (give or take a month here or there, heh).  With
  readers like yourself, it would be hard to leave.

                --Coplan


--=--=--
--=--=------=--=------=--=----
  Your View and Response
     Your Favorites (Replies and a New Challenge)
  By:  Coplan
----=--=------=--=------=--=--
     Last Issue, Issue #41 (Released in November), I challenged the readers
  of Static Line to write in about their favorite tunes.  I got a few
  responses.  Not nearly as many as I would've liked.  But the cleanest
  responses will be published here today.

     For those of you who havn't responded yet, my mailbox is still open.
  If you would like to write in about your favorite scene tune of all
  time, send your contribution to me:  coplan@scenespot.org.  I will
  continue to publish cleanly written responses so long as they are sent
  to me.

  -=- Favorite Tune from Andrew 'Truck' Holland -=-
     Well, certainly we've capitalized on this idea at Nectarine - where
  we not only have the ability to mark 'favorites' but we have voting and
  rankings and then the 'most requested' lists.  Having listened to
  Nectarine for over a year straight now, and having spent much time
  talking to scene regulars there and getting more sceners addicted, I'm
  happy to say that it's a fair bit representative of the scene's
  favorites.

     There are too many votes for 2nd Reality tune 2 by Purple Motion, but
  for a long while 2nd Reality 64 by KB was #1.  And that's kinda
  indicative of the scene, we appreciate quality work that pushes limits.

     We've also introduced folks to some new favorites - substitutionology
  by Beek, for example, was a chiptune that won a compo.  Well, tiny
  instruments; the tune itself is a tad large for a chiptune. Still, the
  results are impressive, and it's in the top 50 highest voted.

     You might want to take a look if you haven't at the rankings - we've
  added a bunch more to what we used to have (which was top 50 requested
  and top 50 ranked.):  http://www.scenemusic.org

     As for me, the best mod ever is 'Nice Wet and Mean' by Trixal, from
  the demo 'Materialized' on Amiga, included on the 4th Dimension diskmag
  by Cryptoburners in '89, I believe.  Maybe it was '90.  All I know is I
  love that tune, the way it builds, the instruments used, and the overall
  production on it.

     Many others are great but that's the one I'll peg as my all time
  favorite.
                --Andrew 'Truck' Holland


  -=- A New Challenge -=-
     As for my next challenge, I would like you to also write in about
  your favorite demo of all time.  In light of the release of MindCandy,
  it should be pretty easy to refresh your memory.  I'd be willing to bet
  that many of you will write in with a demo on that DVD.  After all, it's
  pretty likely that the scene favorites will be found on the first Demo
  DVD of all time.  There's absolutely nothing wrong with stating your
  favorite demo from the DVD.  But if you have a demo in mind that isn't
  on the DVD, please share that with us as well.  After all, Hornet and
  Fusecon will be looking for ideas for the next Demo DVD (we hope).

     Once again, I'll start you off:

     My favorite demo of all time apparently hasn't been as widely
  accepted as I would've liked.  The demo is called "Sunflower" by Pulse.
  It is a DOS demo from a while back, and I honestly can't remember when
  it was released, or when I first saw it.  Sadly, I would have to dig
  through my massive collection of CD backups to find it again, and I
  don't have that much time right now.  The demo sticks out in my mind for
  three very good reasons.

     First is the fact that the music was pretty incredible.  I  wouldn't
  say it was the best music I've ever heard, but for the average  demo at
  the time, it was very dynamic and deep.  It wasn't the hardcore,
  oldskool demo music that you're used to hearing.  It had moods, it eased
  its way between moods, or it turned on you without any notice.  It was a
  trancy type tune, and well fit with the demo.

     Next was the art.  It was some of the best hand-pixeled art I've ever
  seen, especially at the time.  There were cut-scenes to show you some
  life-like still images; a woman feeding a fish, for example.  The bowl
  looked real.  The fish looked real.  The woman looked real (and pretty
  cute at that).  But one of the most interesting things about the art was
  that these high quality images were parsed in throughout the demo.  I'm
  not saying they were stuck here and there.  The 2D images were given
  depth, and folded into butterflies and flowers.  They moved, they
  floated around, and they were one small piece of the demo.  Sure, this
  had been done before, but I had never seen it done with such high
  quality images.

     Finally, I would have to say I was intrigued by the demo design.
  This wasn't anything special in the world of demos, but design is
  something that I have to appreciate in order to consider it a good demo.
  Everything followed some sort of nature theme.  And you traveled through
  the landscape with the camera.  Sometimes you discovered waterfalls.
  Sometimes you were following dragonflies as they ripped through a small
  cave system.  The transitions between scenes were pretty neat, and the
  music always seemed to fit perfectly.

     So now it's your turn.  What's your favorite demo?  And if you havn't
  yet, tell me what your favorite tune is.

                --Coplan


--=--=--
--=--=------=--=------=--=----
  MindCandy DVD -- Volume I: PC Demos
     In-Depth Review
  By:  Seven
----=--=------=--=------=--=--

  -=- Introduction -=-
     I had been waiting for the Mindcandy DVD for weeks. Once, the mailman
  even rang to say I needed to sign for a package, but he had pressed the
  wrong bell (aaaaarg!!). But today I found a large padded envelope from
  Fusecon in my mailbox. Praising the god of the postal services, I danced
  up the stairs, phoned a friend to tell him he could get my movie ticket
  for LOTR:The Two Towers this afternoon because I wouldn't go, shut down
  my mobile phone and any other distraction, and carefully started opening
  the envelope with ridiculously high expectations and a sharp knife.

  -=- The Package -=-
     Inside the package I found the shrink-wrapped DVD, a sticker, a
  postcard and a sheet with product information. The sticker is 5.5x7 cm,
  and shows in black and white the Mindcandy logo and a skull-like head.
  The front of the postcard has the same image as the DVD, on the back
  there's a short description of the Mindcandy DVD over some stylish line
  work. Note that depending on the distributor and availability, you'll
  get either the sticker or the postcard.

     The front image of the DVD case shows a face connected via lightning
  to a chaos of cubes and jiggly lines in a green-blueish tint. The back
  shows four thumbnail demo screenshots, a content listing for each side,
  and a list of the special features. The case itself is your typical
  black DVD case, with clips holding the booklet left and the DVD right.
  The push button that holds the DVD in place is of the sturdy two-part
  type, instead of the 6 or eight pins in CD cases that always break after
  some time. The booklet counts 12 pages on glossy paper. Following the
  one-page introduction are 42 short descriptions with thumbnail
  screenshots (one for each demo), and info such as the year it was
  created, and which rank it reached at which party. Random fact: 19 of
  the demos are from Finland! At the bottom of each page is a continuing
  timeline from 1986 till 2002 describing the evolution of the demoscene.
  Both the case and the booklet look very professional looking.  A well
  polished presentation.

  -=- The DVD -=-
     The DVD is in the DVD-10 format, which means that each side contains
  one 5 GB layer. Most DVDs are in DVD-9, in which only one side contains
  a 5 GB and a 4 GB layer. I'm not a fan of DVD-10: you can't randomly
  browse the entire DVD without turning over the disc, and both sides look
  identical except for some text written around the center in a
  microscopic font. In this case, the text is white on a dark green
  background, which is quite readable after all. An advantage is that you
  can give each side a different menu system, which Fusecon made good use
  of, and of course you have a gigabyte extra: that's about 4 demos more!

     Linux users will be happy to know that the DVD is all-region, so it's
  not CSS-encoded. Xine plays the raw movies without complaining.

     Both sides contain a calibration section, so you can optimize your
  brightness, contrast and volume levels. Very useful, but it doesn't
  explain what to do if you run into troubles. I've tried it with WinDVD
  and PowerDVD (Xine doesn't show the interactive menus), so I'll share my
  experiences. First you need to select the type of display you use: TV or
  computer monitor, this determines the test image. I've only used
  monitor, since I've no standalone DVD player. The first image should be
  a series of 9 gray colums, from black to white. In my case the 2 last
  columns were both white, and changing the brightnes or contrast didn't
  help. In PowerDVD, I had to change the color profile from the default
  "Vivid" to "original", in WinDVD I had to disable hardware accelerated
  decoding to fix the problem.

     Next there's a test pattern to see how your player shows NTSC image
  data. A short explanation: NTSC is an 60 MHZ interlaced format. That
  means that in the first frame only the odd lines of the image are
  updated, and in the next frame only the even lines. So the full image is
  changed only 30 times each second. This is the way TV works, and due to
  the hexagon pixels there's automatic blending between the odd/even lines
  anyway. But a computer monitor has square pixels, and updating
  alternative lines, or "weaving", can look ugly, especially when
  displaying fast-moving high-contrast objects (most anime falls in this
  category). The alternative is called "bob", and interpolates between the
  lines. The test pattern should look like a square with two flickering
  halves. Left and right are shown two wrong patterns: a solid white
  square and a square with alternating white and black lines. Weave
  results in the zebra-square, bob results in a solid grey square, so it
  seems my equipment can't handle 60 updates per second, but bob is
  definately the better way. Both PowerDVD and WinDVD autoselect bob but
  allow you to force either bob or weave, Xine always uses weave. Maybe
  this can be changed but I haven't found yet how (I'm new to this Linux
  thing).

     Both sides also contain the credits and the greetings. Each of the 5
  greeting screens come with their own music and background, but they
  auto-forward after 45 seconds, which is sometimes too short to read f.e.
  Trixters page-long text in a tiny font.

  -=- Side 1: Trancedental vistas -=-
     This side contains the best demos from 1999-2001, and is meant to
  impress the audience as much as possible. After the Fusecon/Hornet
  presents/Mindcandy opening sequences, which contain some demo effects
  themselves, a futuristic menu with metal and plastic circles on a smokey
  background is shown. It took me a while to recognize the impressive
  opening music: Kerosene by Acumen, which was the soundtrack from the
  winning Assembly'02 animation. You can actually skip the opening
  sequence when you're bored with it, unlike those annoying non-skippable
  company logo animations on movie DVDs.

     This side contains 22 demos: Wonder/Sunflower, 604 (by AND, Sly and
  SynSun), Kosmiset Avaruus Sienet/Haujobb, Further/Moppi Productions,
  Chrome/Damage, Volatile/Addict, Tesla/Sunflower, Broadband/T-Rex,
  Mikrostrange/Haujobb, Moral Hard Candy/Blasphemy, TE-2RB/TPOLM, Le Petit
  prince/Kolor, Energia/Sunflower, Gerbera/Moppi productions,
  Lapsus/Maturefurk, Enlight The Surreal/Noice, Experimental/Wipe, Live
  Evil/Mandula, The Nonstop Ibiza Experience/Orange, Codename
  Chinadoll/Katastro.fi, Art/Haujobb and Kasparov/Elitegroup.

     You can play the demos consecutively, or pick one from the animated
  chapter selection. Bad point: during playback, you cannot move to a
  specific point with the slider, you need to fastforward. The
  next/previous buttons jump between the demos. The videostream is in
  720*480 format, but most demos (on side 1 they're typically in 640*400)
  have a black border around them. For the demos that already used a fake
  "widescreen" mode, this can result in a border using over 1/3th of the
  screen, but scaling the demos up would've probably looked worse. The
  demos are slightly more fuzzy than the originals, especially if you're
  used to see them in 1024*768. There are some artifacts visible (for
  example a vertical retrace during the volumetric light tunnel of Moral
  Hard Candy), but there's probably no PC that ran all originals perfectly
  either; f.e. I've never seen Kasparov/Elitegroup and
  Mikrostrange/Haujobb run on my PC.

  [ Editor's Note:  The vertical retrace that Seven speaks of for the
  Moral Hard Candy demo was visible when I played it through my PC's
  player (Xine for Linux).  The problem does not exist when played
  through my standard DVD player.  I should also mention that the quality
  of the graphics is increased tenfold if you have an HDTV.  I pipe my
  DVD player through my monitor as well, and I get a resolution of
  1024x768 by default.  If I drop it down to "normal television" mode, it
  does blur a bit.  My point is that you'll likely get different results
  depending on your personal setup. ]

     The two most interesting special features are the "Demographics:
  Behind the Scene" featurette and the production notes. Demographics is a
  16-minute movie made by Jeremy Williams (of PC Demo Fanclub fame), with
  Trixter/Hornet explaining the history of the demoscene, why people form
  groups and go to parties. There are also interviews with Statix (over a
  webcam), Skaven, Marvel and Abyss of Future Crew, and there's even some
  footage of the making of Second Reality! There are demo fragments
  sprinkled through the entire movie, the soundtrack rocks, and overall
  it's extremely entertaining and informational to watch. Next time I have
  to explain to someone what the demoscene is about, I'll show them
  "Demographics". My only complaints are that you can't jump to a specific
  point with the slider, and that you can't enable subtitles: the accents
  make it harder to understand what's being said in places, and I can read
  English better than I can understand it.

     The production notes is a text-only slideshow in which Trixter
  explains in detail what they had to do to capture the demos as best as
  possible, and compress them as much as possible without compromising
  quality. This ranges from using specially shielded cables, over mixing
  frames from different recording sessions to even creating masks by hand
  in Photoshop to separate moving parts from their static backgrounds and
  compress those only. Sounds like a really heroic effort!

     So far I've also found three easter eggs, some if which are
  definately must-sees. They are not hard to find, because moving the
  mouse over a button selects it, and the last selected button stays
  highlighted. So just move the mouse randomly over the different menus
  and you're bound to find something.

  -=- Side 2: Kickin' it oldskool -=-
     The second side contains demos from 1991 till 1998. The opening
  sequence is the same as side 1, but the music is a oldskool tune that I
  don't recognize and the menus is based on low-res cubes, starfields and
  more cubes. For the rest the menu options are identical to side 1.

     The 20 oldskool demos included are: Second Reality/Future Crew,
  Megademo/The Space Pigs, Cronologia/Cascada, Unreal/Future Crew,
  Amnesia/Renaissance, Panic/Future Crew, Crystal Dream 2/Triton,
  Show/Magic 12, Verses/Electromotive Force, Dope/Complex, X14/Orange,
  Stars:Wonders of the World/Nooon, Reve/Pulse, Paimen/COMA, Inside/CNCD,
  Megablast/Orange, 303/Acme, Saint/Halcyon & Da Jormas, Square/Pulse and
  Riprap/Exceed. Unlike side 1, the demos here are  ordered
  chronologically, except for Second Reality.

     Especially the oldest demos have been changed a lot in order to get
  them on the DVD. Most noticably, all the long scrollers have been cut
  with a circular wipe after a few tens of seconds, simply to prevent most
  watchers to die from boredom. For the same reasons a lot of spinning
  cubes or similar simple object shows have been shortened, looping parts
  where you had to press a key to advance fade out after a while, and
  upscrolling credits at the end are cut too. The helicopter animation at
  the start of Megablast sadly couldn't be included because Orange ripped
  a sample and Fusecon couldn't get permission to put it on the DVD. Let
  this be a lesson for would-be rippers: years later your production may
  not (fully) be archived for eternity due to copyright reasons... Then
  there are conversion artifacts: most oldskool demos ran at 70 frames per
  second, converting this to 60FPS leads to jerky movement here and there,
  or blurry edges on fast-moving objects. Some parts had to be scaled up,
  leading to more visible aliasing than in the original. But overall I'm
  surprised at the quality of the capture: interlaced or fake-highcolor
  modes look like intended, and even vectordot routines look like I
  remembered them (One exception: the pixel-flag in Unreal has lost the
  dark blue dots on the black background). I'm glad to finally see and
  hear Show/Magic 12 and Paimen/Coma, which I never got running because
  I didn't have a Gravis Ultrasound.

     The best feature of the entire DVD is IMHO the audio commentary. It's
  filled to the brim with funny stories and interesting facts I never knew
  before. The Future Crew guys talk about how they put their demos
  together, Statix tells how Vic sang the vocals of 303 at the party while
  he was suffering from a hangover 3 hours before the deadline, etc etc.
  Although only 1 out of every 4 groups has taken the chance to speak
  their minds about their productions, the Hornet team (Pallbearer,
  Trixter, Phoenix, Stony) and Jeremy provide insight in the rest of the
  demos, drawing from their accumulated knowledge of the scene. The first
  CD I ever bought was the Hornet CD, and to watch the DVD in the middle
  of the night with headphones and hear these guys spontaneously debate
  over the demos, correcting each other, cracking jokes and telling what
  they admire in each production, simply blew my mind away. I was a bit
  reluctant to try the audio commentary due to the lack of subtitles, but
  they're very understandable, better than the featurette IMHO. (Side 1
  contains a comment track too, which is also very good, but somehow I
  didn't get the same feeling of excitement. Maybe it's because I watched
  it during the day, or because I was in the scene from '98 and witnessed
  most of the events myself).

     The only special feature not present on Side 1 is a dedication to
  White Shadow, who passed away in 2001. It shows fragments of his demos,
  reactions from friends and a slideshow of pictures. I remember watching
  DoWackaDo on my 486, little did I realize it ran equally smooth on a
  268/16! Respect for such a skilled coder, and judging from the
  reactions, for an overall great guy.

     I've found two easter eggs on this side, and they're equally
  interesting as the actual demos. One of them is really historical, and
  relates to the demoscene in the same way the moonlanding footage relates
  to the space program.

  -=- Overall: -=-
     Mindcandy managed to exceed all my expectations: it's a very
  professional product, and shows great respect towards the demoscene.
  Glitches are few and far between, and the people at Fusecon, Hornet and
  Blue 7 Media obviously put an incredible amount of work in it (As they
  tell in the commentary, all of them did this besides their full-time
  job. Someone should give these guys a medal!) The only thing you could
  validly criticize is the choice of demos, but that's a thorny,
  subjective problem. Suffice to say that all kinds of styles are
  represented, so everyone should find something to enjoy.

     Also, since Mindcandy is subtitled "Volume I: PC demos", this
  suggests a sequel could very well be possible. I don't know if this will
  show Amiga demos, PC intros, wild entries or the PC demos that didn't
  make Volume I, but I'm really looking forward to it.

                --Seven

  For More information on the MindCandy DVD, visit their official website:
  http://www.mindcandydvd.com


--=--=--
--=--=------=--=------=--=----
  MindCandy DVD -- Volume I: PC Demos
     Another View
  By:  Coplan
----=--=------=--=------=--=--

     Seeing as I'm not exactly the demo expert that Seven is, I wasn't
  going to write anything about the MindCandy DVD.  In fact, I gave up my
  rights to the press package to Seven.  After all, he's the official
  reviewer for this publication.  But then I got my disc.  And the next
  three days were a blur.  I ate almost every snackable item in the
  house.  There is now a sunken spot in my couch.  I must've seen that
  DVD about 5 times.  And that's not counting the times I played some of
  my favorite demos.  So I feel as though I gotta write something about
  it.

     There are just certain things that always stand out in your life.
  The Demoscene has been a huge part of my life for the last 12 years.
  So it goes without saying that some of my memorable moments came from
  the 'scene.  Getting my copies of the DVD in the mail now ranks among
  the best, most memorable moments of my relationship with the PC
  demoscene.

     It goes without saying, Fusecon, Hornet and anyone involved in the
  project did an exceptional job with MindCandy.  Right from the very
  beginning, they've had everyone involved that needed to be involved,
  even you, the scener and potential buyer for such a product.  There were
  nominations and elections to determine what gets on the DVD.  There were
  commentary feeds recorded by the creators of a given demo, and they are
  available on the DVD as well.  Every effort was made to preserve the
  true presentation of each demo so that this DVD would become a
  historical book of the 'scene.  And it turned out pretty damn good, in
  my opinion.

     I won't go into too much detail about the demos.  As a regular
  observer  of the scene, you can make your own deductions about all that.
  The presentation, the menus, the extra features were all very well
  done, and very aesthetically pleasing.  But think of this DVD not as a
  piece of memorabilia.  Think of it as a tool.  With this tool, I was
  able to introduce several people to the scene.  Most notably, in fact,
  was my father.  He's relatively computer literate, but he never really
  did understand what the demoscene was all about.  If anyone asks you
  what the demoscene is about, you don't have to look flustered anymore.
  Just play the "Demographics" feature.  It's a professional documentary
  style video that describes in broad strokes the scene.  You might even
  learn something new yourself.  Your guest will learn about the history
  of the demo to the world of Demoparties.  No one would believe an
  auditorium filled with 4,000 people (and almost as many computer
  monitors) until you see that video.

     But my father was also quite interested in the demos themselves.  The
  full-color pamphlet tells you a little bit about each demo, and where it
  sits in the timeline.  As I said, my father is pretty computer literate,
  so he was able to relate a given demo's placement relative to the
  technology at the time.  2nd Reality, for example, wouldn't be so
  impressive if it were done last year.  But seeing as it was written for
  computers that couldn't do half of what they do now, it's quite
  impressive.  My one complaint about the extra information that had been
  provided for the pamplet:  It would've been nice to know what machine
  each demo had been coded for.  Was 2nd Reality coded for a 386?  Or was
  it coded for a 486?  How much memory was required to run it?  What sound
  cards were needed?  This is information that I would've liked to have
  seen right in the pamplet.

     All in all, the DVD is well worth the money.  If you havn't already,
  you should swing over to http://www.mindcandydvd.com and order your own
  copy today.  Order a couple.  It's pretty cheap, considering what you
  get, and you won't regret it.  If you don't believe Seven's or my
  account, ask anyone who already has it.  I've asked hundreds of people
  about it now.  I have yet to find anyone that dislikes the DVD.

                --Coplan


--=--=--
--=--=------=--=------=--=----
  Party Report
     State of the Art
  By:  Seven
----=--=------=--=------=--=--

  -=- Friday 13 december -=-
     A few days before State Of The Art (hereafter SOTA), I had mailed
  DJefke to inquire whether he got ahold of a car to drive us to Lille,
  France. Unfortunately, he was under the impression SOTA took place the
  next week, and his sister had already claimed the car for the weekend.
  So we had to rely on the most whimsical of transportation methods in
  Belgium: the NMBS, or the Belgian railway company. I managed to catch up
  with Djefke on the train without a hitch (Ghent, where  I live, lies
  between Antwerp, where he resides, and the partyplace), but due to the
  typical NMBS-delay we had exactly one minute to switch trains in
  Kortrijk. We succeeded with 20 seconds to spare and a heartrate ten
  times higher.

     Having arrived in Lille, we navigated to the point where a shuttle
  bus from the organisers should have been. After two false alarms (a bus
  from the Post and a police van), we met three Spanish sceners, one of
  them from Threepixel, who were in the same situation as us. After a
  failed attempt to phone the orgos, we decided to go to the partyplace by
  metro. 17 stations and a walk later, we were at Le Fresnoy, a large
  cultural center with several halls, in one of which SOTA takes place.
  After paying the 15 Euro entrance fee we get a wristband and our
  login/password combo needed for voting.

  18:40:
     We've installed ourselves near the back of the party hall, although
  "back" is a bit ambiguous: there are two identical bigscreens on both
  ends of the large rectangular room, and there's no single mega-powerful
  soundsystem, instead there are several tens of medium-sized speakers
  suspended from the triangular ceiling. In the middle of the hall is an
  empty boxing ring, to be used as a podium, and behind that (at 2/3th of
  the room) is a scaffold, used to film the partyplace from higher up.

     Looking for familiar faces, Djefke spotted Brioche/Aspirine, who had
  shaved his hair since I last saw him on Inscene. After watching an old
  Aspirine 64K text-intro, I tried connecting to the network, which worked
  immediately. Praise the greatness of DHCP! Unfortunately Djefke didn't
  have DHCP on his Slackware Linux CDs, so we had to turn to
  linux.google.com to find it. (I thought I was pretty oldskool with a
  Pentium 166 laptop, but Djefke beat me with a 486 one. I have much to
  learn.) The organizers have been very thoughtful: they've not only
  supplied switches, but even UTP-cables to every seat!

     The bigscreens shows several old Amiga demos including, of course,
  State Of The Art/Spaceballs.

  19:20:
     The bigscreens tell us free food and drinks will be served at 20:00:
  there's pizza, sandwiches, coffee and cola. After that more demos are
  shown, but the info is transparently shown over them from time to time.
  Good idea I think, this way people who missed it the first time can
  still notice it, while the rest of the crowd can keep enjoying the
  classics.

  20:35:
     After carefully testing the free pizza, I've to say it's not the best
  I've ever tasted (plus only lukewarm), but you can't beat the
  quality/price ratio. Djefke, who has helped organising several
  LAN-parties, wonders how the SOTA orgos can finance feeding 250 sceners
  during the whole party, in addition to the other costs, for only 15
  Euro/person. I've no idea, but I'm grateful for it.

  21:21:
     The only bad point about the LTP4 party is still present in SOTA:
  lots of announcements in French only :( I can understand one of them,
  something about a car being parked at the wrong place, but the typical
  dialogue between Djefke, our Spanish neighbours and I is more like "Did
  you understand that one?" "No" "I hope it's not important".

     The bigscreens shows a grainy image of a large dark place, illuminated
  by green and blue spotlights and filled with sinister, barely moving
  creatures. Must be either a zombie movie or a webcam stream of the party
  place.

  21:58:
     A loud singing announces the arrival of the Haujobb guys. They have
  flyers advertising the new Breakpoint party, which replaces the late
  Mekka/Symposium. After proudly summing up the highlights of the new
  party, it says "Your family will hate us!" (Breakpoint is also scheduled
  on Easter weekend).

     Melwyn makes Djefke and me pose for a photo for Slengpung, the
  demoscene photo archive. He intends to take pictures of all sceners in
  the party hall, because currently Slengpung is filled with pictures of
  the same people over and over again, mostly boozing outside the various
  party places. Meanwhile Tres and Brioche are DJ-ing chiptunes: starting
  with a Second Reality mix, they provide a really fitting soundtrack for
  the party (I really liked the happy-sounding loops).

  And now, a special guest-appearance:
     And since this seems to be an official party report for Static Line I
  have to write some greetings to following people: Tobi for driving us
  from Brussels to Lille, Azzarro for drinking our salmiakki vodka and
  DJefke for giving me one nice can of white beer.  --Melwyn/Haujobb

     (The beer was Hoegaarden, if you want to know)

  22:51:
     I also met Skrebbel (he used to be Eggbird/Green) & Warp, who
  informed me there will probably be no other dutch sceners, despite
  several more registrations on the SOTA website :(. I've some 3D code on
  a floppy that I want to check on Skrebbels laptop, to avoid the dreaded
  "Runs only on the coders PC" syndrome, but his high-end Pentium 4 laptop
  with Geforce Go 3D card does not have a floppy drive. Grmmbl, damn
  progress and innovation! We fall back on the network, and everything
  works fine. Thanks Skrebbel!

  23:32:
     I've been talking with XXX/Haujobb about the demise of
  Mekka/Symposium and about what to expect from the new Breakpoint party.
  It will still be a real scene event, with no gamers allowed, and there
  should be more room than at the old MS location. I've also a chance to
  watch the new MFX and Haujobb demos: the MFX one looks great but has
  very boring music, and the Haujobb one is, well, vintage Haujobb (I had
  hoped that they would continue with the style of Liquid Wen, but alas).
  The chiptunes just finished, and the opening ceremony will start
  (according to the bigscreens) in "10 and 3/4 minutes", a mere 5 hours
  late.

  23:44:
     Djefkes laptop suddenly died, and it takes us a while to realise a
  quarter of the hall has lost power (Due to the increased popularity of
  laptops, this is less visible at a single glance). My battery is only
  good for 1 hour, let's hope the problem will be fixed by then...

  23:51:
     Some orgos are sitting in the boxing ring, it seems like the opening
  ceremony will start Real Soon.

  -=- Saturday 14 December: -=-
  0:07:
     The power is back in the hall, but now the beamers don't have any! So
  we have to wait a little longer. In the meantime the organisers
  presented themselves, and Melwyn volunteers to sing a Finnish song while
  the audience is waiting.

  0:21:
     The opening ceremony is over, it consisted of a video with fragments
  of various famous demos, also from other (non-PC) platforms. I asked
  Melwyn what he was singing, and it translates to "I have a huge penis,
  tralalalalaaaa, it's true, tralalalalaaaaa". Crazy Fins :)

  0:31:
     Some old VESA2 demos are shown that I haven't seen in a long time:
  Squeezed/Bomb for example, and No Exit/Nomad. I've the impression they
  shown mainly French productions, though.

  0:57:
     "Feelings are rising to the roof. People are starting to have
  striptease and taking their clothes off. Especially tobi (xxx of
  haujobb) looks very  handsome without a shirt. grrrr." --Melwyn (again)

     Melwyn! Stop messing with my party report! If you feel like writing
  porn, do so on your own computer! (And take credit for what you write,
  or XXX/Haujobb will never be aware of how you feel about him :-P )

  1:13:
     The power is down again in our part of the hall :( The bigscreens
  were showing japanese pop videos, but now they've switched to modern
  Amiga demos.

  1:53:
     The power is back, and I notice that our neighbours on the table
  before us are watching Ghost In The Shell: Standalone Complex! I've seen
  the movie, and I'm really looking forward to watch the TV series.

  3:37:
     I had a long talk with the guys before us about our favorite anime
  series, and when I'm back I notice Djefke and Melwyn have been smuggling
  insults and lewd remarks to each other in this report. For the sake of
  Static Lines quality, I've deleted them. No luck, guys ;)

  9:59:
     Back awake after a refreshening sleep! I grab a sandwich from the
  food table, which is conveniently located right behind us, and check
  some news websites. The internet connection is working great, although
  I've heard people have problems with IRC because everyone uses the same
  gateway-IP and most IRC servers allow only a single connection per IP...

  10:24:
     Like at Assembly, several presentations are planned, and the first
  one is about to start. It's about 3DS Max tools, and the Spanish guys
  decide to attend it while I keep an eye on their laptops. Again the
  announcements are in French only, but at least the bigscreen shows the
  most important info in English.

  10:57:
     The Fast compos are announced. Note that these are different from the
  surprise compos: in the fast compos you've only 2 hours to make
  something. For the coders, the assignment is to find a single bug in a
  decompressor for a weird graphic file format. I have done my master
  thesis about compression, and the flashbacks of gruelling 6-hours long
  debugging sessions make me feel I better skip this compo. Some scars
  take years to heal.

  12:39:
     Lunch is available, as you can guess it consist of... pizza and
  sandwiches :) Dunno if it's done for the sake of variation, but my pizza
  slice is rather charred this time. The bigscreen is showing Stars/Nooon
  at the moment, and one of the French announcements may be saying that
  showers are available (mais je ne suis pas sure).

  13:06:
     Another presentation is about to start in another hall, this time
  it's about programming on mobile devices.

  13:48:
     The FTP for uploading the compo entries is open, and the surprise
  coding compo rules are made available. The objective for the coding
  compo is to make the smallest version of the decompressor of the fast
  coding compo. After some doubts, I decide to give it a try.

  15:07:
     There's yet another presentation, about "Specials numericals effects"
  on some machine. I'm struggling with Tasm under DOS, trying to remember
  all the limitations of 16-bit DOS mode.

  16:06:
     In the hall next to us, several tens of flatscreens are suspended in
  mid-air with thin wires. On a trip to the toilets I notice the screens
  are now on, and visitors (non-demosceners) are walking around looking at
  them. It turns out to be some kind of digital art exhibition. After
  reading a flyer, I realize that State Of The Art is only one part of a
  larger event, the "PIX festival de la culture digitale". It consists of
  the exhibition, the presentations, a web designer gathering in another
  building, an electronic music night with lots of DJs and of course the
  demoparty. There are guards standing at the entrance of the party hall,
  to prevent random people to get in and walk away with some hardware, so
  we've to show our wristband every time. Stamba is starting his live
  music set. It's techno, I like the visuals that are well synced but
  without annoying hard flashes.

  17:14:
     Stambas performance is over, it was a bit monotonous at the start but
  got better near the end. Djefke is happy showing off the free
  PIX-festival T-shirt he got. I guess the PIX festival must be well
  sponsored, I've never seen a demoparty with so much stuff for such a low
  entrance fee.

  17:42:
     I've been walking around at the exhibition, it shows mostly flash
  animations and a few "interactive art"-thingies on the floating
  flatscreens. The visitors can walk up an improvised stair to the balcony
  around the party hall, looking down on the chaos below. So now we're an
  important part of an highly artistic exhibition! Who'd have expected
  that? We finally get recognition of the cultural importance of the
  demoscene in the modern world! How cool is that?

     As if to prove me wrong, several people who are relaxing in the
  boxing ring start singing "Father Jacob" in four different languages,
  and an off key version of Yesterday/The Beatles is followed by someone
  repeatedly screaming "Jesus must save you". So much for our artistic
  reputation :)

  18:39:
     The only oldskool entry has been shown, on an Oryx computer. Either
  it crashed or it was very short, only a red State Of The Art logo
  scrolling up. Aha, it's reshown, with sound this time: there's a logo,
  scrolling copper bars, a funny cartoon, a wobbling logo, some waving
  credits, a beautiful picture of a two-headed dragon, and an effect
  looking like a phonograph.

  19:51:
     Willbe and Chaosnet are playing a very nice ambient set. The deadline
  for the surprise coding compo is tomorrow at 11 o'clock, which is great
  because a) my code doesn't even work, and it's very non-optimized, and
  b) I want to catch some sleep before the compos start. The pizza for
  dinner is perfect: warm but not charred, but the cheese on my sandwich
  looks menacingly orange. Ah well, you only live once.

  22:33:
     Lots of compos have passed! There were 4 wild entries: 3 low-quality
  but funny ones plus one more serious entry from Cocoon. The fast Gfx
  compo had only 3 entries, but the raytraced one had 13 images, there
  were several oldskool entries and the handdrawn compo is still going on
  with over 20 pictures so far. As can be expected, a lot of them are of
  very high quality.

     The scaffold in the room has two comfortable couches on top of it.
  I've no idea how the orgos have gotten them up there, but they make the
  perfect place to watch Vip2/Popsy Team, State Of Mind/Bomb or the other
  demos they're showing right now: it's right in front of the bigscreen,
  you don't have to stare upwards so much, you can rest your feet on the
  handrails,...  But since I start to fall asleep, I go back down, vote
  for the compos that have passed and unroll my sleeping bag again.

  -=- Sunday 15 december -=-
  0:08:
     Djamm is now playing his set, I thought I would have missed the music
  compos but they have been delayed. I continue messing around in Alab,
  hoping to get something that assembles correctly.

  1:08:
     The music compos should start in 30 minutes, says the bigscreen. I've
  completed the translation from C to Asm, but my code doesn't work as it
  should :( The Spanish guys consider me crazy to do the translation by
  hand, instead of starting from the ASM-output that the C-compiler gives
  you, but I think you have less overhead that way.

  2:00:
     History repeats itself: the music compo should start "very s[ota]oon
  now", and my code is still not working...

  2:27:
     The music compos have finally started: first the chiptunes, then the
  fast music compo (with some bladerunner remixes), and now the oldskool
  music.

  3:54:
     The music compo is still running, but people are losing interest due
  to the length and their tiredness. I feel sorry for the musicians who
  spent a lot of effort to make a great tune which gets barely any
  applause.

  4:26:
     Joy! The code works as it should, and is really small, even with some
  debug stuff still in it: 761 bytes after packing! The Threepixel guys,
  whose entry is currently twice as large, are impressed :)

     The music compo is still going on, now a happy hardcore tune is
  playing that is most probably written by Skrebbel (The solo compos do
  not show the name of the creator, to prevent namevoting, but who else in
  the scene likes happy hardcore?)

  4:40:
     The vocal music compo has several songs that could be played straight
  on the radio IMHO. The increase in quality is impressive, compared to
  the vocal compo at Assembly.

  5:36:
     Everyone tries to stay awake for the democompos. I'm happy with my
  progress, the entry is already less than 670 bytes!

  5:59:
     The demo and intro compos should start any minute now. Not a moment
  too soon, because people are really having problems staying awake.
  Besides, the compos should have started 10 after midnight...

  7:27:
     The demos and 4K intros are over! There were no 64K intros at all,
  and only 3 4Ks, but almost 20 demos (2 of which where disqualified for
  unspecified reasons). Besides the MFX and Haujobb demos, there was also
  a Cocoon demo in their old Shad-style: blood and torture everywhere, but
  now in high-res. Superjam Superstars is a really cute and funny entry
  worth getting, and the Ketchup Killers (a old Belgian group) made a
  comeback with some weird bezier-spline compressed movie. There were also
  a few software-rendered 3D-demos, one of them looked better than most
  accelerated entries.

  8:36:
     The FTP is open for downloading all entries, and for the upload of
  the surprise code. Skal, who's the orgo responsible for the surprise
  coding compo, told me someone had an entry of 521 bytes, but that it was
  still a bit buggy. Panic! My code is still over 600 bytes big! Aaargh...

  9:31:
     I'm still trying to remove a few more bytes, but exhaustion is taking
  its toll. Meanwhile my FTP program is leeching all compo entries. Djefke
  comes back from a visit to the Ketchup Killers, confirming that they
  really want to start over, so their entry was not a single release for
  nostalgias sake, as I thought. Cool! We could really use some more
  active groups in Belgium!

  11:26:
     Aaargh! No matter how many time you have, it's never enough for
  size-optimisations. Especially if you mess up, over-optimize to the
  point that the code doesn't work anymore, and then are too tired to
  remember which changes you did recently (Yes, some people who will
  remain unnamed are that stupid). I had to submit an older version that
  is still over 600 bytes big, because such things happen of course half
  an hour before the deadline, and I couldn't re-apply all the changes
  that made it slightly smaller than 600 bytes :( In a foul mood, I attack
  the breakfast table, and then start mindlessly browsing the LAN.

     On a positive note, there *will* be hourly shuttles back to the
  trainstation, which is nice. The compo results should be ready at 14
  o'clock, but quite a few people laugh unbelievingly at this
  announcement. The frequent schedule slippage has made them a bit
  cynical, and since the doors are open til 18 o'clock...

  14:14:
     Lo and behold, the prize ceremony starts at the promised time! There
  are lots of hardware prizes, which are all stocked in a big heap in the
  midlle of the boxing ring. After thanking the sponsors and all people
  who helped organizing SOTA, Krafton starts the usual 3th place, 2nd
  place, 1st place cycle, with the audience applauding their hands in
  between. I lose my confidence in my coding abilities when Silex wins the
  surprize coding compo with an entry smaller than 500 bytes. Where on
  earth did I used more than 100 bytes too much?

     The arrangement of the prizes (all stacked in a pile) poses a
  problem: it might look nice, but it's hard to find a specific item.
  After each new name, three orgos dive in the pile to find the winners
  prize, which can take a few minutes. This greatly prolongs the ceremony,
  and Djefke and I have to get the shuttle of 3 o'clock, so we have to
  leave before the demo winners are announced :(

     Overall, State Of The Art was an amazing party. I've never seen so
  many releases on the first edition of a party, although that may be
  because many people see SOTA as the successor of the LTP series. There
  were about 250 visitors from 18 countries, people even came from as far
  as Poland! The organisers were friendly and tried to fix problems such
  as the power outages quickly. My only peeves are the French
  announcements, and the schedule slippage. It was also funny to be part
  of a big "Digital culture" festival, although I wonder what this means
  for future SOTA parties: will they continue on their own, or will the
  PIX festival also be repeated on a yearly base? Guess we'll just have to
  wait and see...

     Greets to everyone I met at SOTA, and see you again at Breakpoint!

                --Seven


--=--=--
--=--=------=--=------=--=----
  Competition Announcement
     The Spectrum Music Competition
  By:  Coplan
----=--=------=--=------=--=--
     The Spectrum Music Competition 2003 has started.

     The Spectrum Music Competition is a music contest with a really
  unique concept:  You choose one of three colours (red, green, or blue)
  and make a song inspiered by it.

     A couple of reviewers will listen to all songs and give comments, as
  well as points for different things, like how good the song expresses
  the choosen colour, creativity, musical quality, and technical quality.
  Also, I will play the songs for random people asking them what colour
  they think it represents. Your song gets extra points if the guess is
  right.

     The prizes for the competition winners are glass oil lamps with a
  treble clef and "Spectrum Music Competition 2003" engraved. Handblown
  from Visby Glasblåseri, Sweden.

     Visit the Competition Site:  http://www.nifflas.com/spectrum/

                --Nifflas


--=--=--
--=--=------=--=------=--=----
  The Lineup
  By:  Novus
----=--=------=--=------=--=--

     Welcome to The Lineup! Every month, I scour through the hundreds of
  new  releases on the scene's major archive sites to find the best new
  music,  saving you the trouble of having to download 20 instant-delete
  songs to find  1 that's worth keeping.

     I have an important note regard November's Lineup: it has been
  brought to my attention by Gargoyle at The MOD Archive that one of last
  month's selections, "A Moment In Tears" by Norma Segui and J Graham of
  the group CavinCrew, is actually a rip of "A Moment In Time" by
  Saboteur, and that other CavinCrew songs are under scrutiny as well. I
  was not aware of this at the time, and I thank Gargoyle for bringing
  this to my attention.

     I'm also looking for feedback from you folks on how good a job I'm
  doing so far. Are the songs listed in The Lineup as good as you were
  hoping they'd be? Do I need stricter standards? Looser standards? More
  openness to other genres? E-mail me at vince_young@hotmail.com and
  sound off!

     In the meantime, you may consider the following 23 tunes to be the
  best  tracks of November/December 2002:

  "A Storm In Paradise" - FleshDance - dance
  http://www.homemusic.cc/Songs/songs.get.php?soId=1782

  "Against the Wind" - FireBot - pop
  http://www.homemusic.cc/Songs/songs.get.php?soId=1755

  "Atlantis Lost: Storm Remix" - Storm - trance
  http://www.homemusic.cc/Songs/songs.get.php?soId=1724

  "Awakening Of Venus" - Louigi Verona - orchestral
  http://www.homemusic.cc/Songs/songs.get.php?soId=1784

  "Beyound The Space" - A. C. S. - trance
  http://www.homemusic.cc/Songs/songs.get.php?soId=1821

  "Dark Teknoid" - Double D - techno
  http://www.homemusic.cc/Songs/songs.get.php?soId=1765

  "Detuned" - DJ Keys - trance
  http://www.homemusic.cc/Songs/songs.get.php?soId=1701

  "Earth Cycles: Awakening" - Solo - ambient
  http://www.homemusic.cc/Songs/songs.get.php?soId=1779

  "Funny Blue Sky" - Ultrasyd - disco
  http://www.homemusic.cc/Songs/songs.get.php?soId=1749

  "Impaler" - Zond 3 - drum'n'bass
  http://www.homemusic.cc/Songs/songs.get.php?soId=1820

  "Kajahtaa: Slow Mix" - T-DJ - pop
  http://www.modarchive.com/cgi-bin/download.cgi?K/kajahtaa_slowmix.it

  "Let Your Self Go" - A. C. S. - trance
  http://www.homemusic.cc/Songs/songs.get.php?soId=1822

  "Mental Decay" - Zond 3 - industrial
  http://www.homemusic.cc/Songs/songs.get.php?soId=1691

  "November Times" - Dusodril - pop
  http://www.homemusic.cc/Songs/songs.get.php?soId=1788

  "Pandora's Box" - Christofori - demostyle
  http://www.homemusic.cc/Songs/songs.get.php?soId=1713

  "Reflected" - Abyss - trance
  http://www.homemusic.cc/Songs/songs.get.php?soId=1825

  "Shemida" - Aitrus - ambient
  http://www.modplug.com/mods/nrdetail.php3?session=&detailno=10183

  "Sphinx" - Virgill - pop
  http://www.homemusic.cc/Songs/songs.get.php?soId=1794

  "Surrounded" - Pete H - dance
  http://www.modplug.com/mods/nrdetail.php3?session=&detailno=10182

  "Technicolor Combustion" - Christofori - pop
  http://www.homemusic.cc/Songs/songs.get.php?soId=1708

  "The Climb Of The Mountain" - Storm & Stance - trance
  http://www.modplug.com/mods/nrdetail.php3?session=&detailno=10215

  "The Sunny Flower" - Cooth - orchestral
  http://www.homemusic.cc/Songs/songs.get.php?soId=1834

  "Trance Impulse" - Storm - trance
  http://www.homemusic.cc/Songs/songs.get.php?soId=1760

     Take care!
                --Novus


--=--=--
--=--=------=--=------=--=----
  Editorial
     Art All Around
  By: Coplan
----=--=------=--=------=--=--

     Now that I have the Mind Candy DVD, I've been showing it to everyone
  that I feel might have some appreciation for the art at the core of
  the demoscene.  As expected, I got a lot of oooo's and ahhhh's.  The
  demos were quite the talk of my group of friends.  One person in
  paticular, my girlfriend, asked a question that isn't so easy to answer:
  "Where do these people get the inspiration for these things?"  I
  couldn't answer that right away.  I honestly had to think about it a
  very long time.  Today, I think I'm ready to answer that question.

     Inspiration for an art is not something that has ever come very easy
  to me.  I write music, but I have never claimed to be very good at it.
  My personal inspiration comes from the fact that I tool around with song
  ideas almost every day for a couple of hours a day.  If you start a new
  song idea that often, you're bound to come across something that you
  like.  But that's not a very efficient way to come up with ideas.  You
  end up throwing out hundreds more scrap tunes than you keep.

     Someone, I'm not sure exactly who, has been quoted millions of times:
  "Stop and smell the flowers."  It is my belief that the best inspiration
  for any art form comes from this type of philosophy.  Sadly, in this day
  and age, this philosophy is hard to embrace on a daily basis.  We all
  live lives that require us to be running almost as soon as we wipe the
  sleepy dust from our eyes.  And we continue running through our days
  until usually late evening.  I, for one, only get a couple of hours a
  night to relax.  Through the course of our day, how often to we have the
  opportunity to "smell the flowers" as it were.  Especially in these days
  of high powered, amplified, high resolution electronic entertainment,
  what benefit does the average guy get out of such a simple practice?
  I'm not saying that such a philophy is bad, or even boreing.  I'm just
  not sure many people realize the benefits of noticing your surroundings.

     To an artist, the simplist detail can easily be an inspiration.  The
  sound your ring makes against a wine glass could spark a whole new song
  in your mind.  The way a plastic bag blows across an empty parking lot
  could light a new image in your mind, just before you put it on canvas.
  There's no telling what will spark your thoughts or make your mind glow.
  Just imagine what new song or new images might come out of the every day
  tasks that you take for granted.  After thinking about such a thing,
  imagine how much you've already missed?

     When you watch a demo, it's often very obvious that a lot of time was
  spent on its design.  Regardless of that fact, however, everything
  started with one idea.  One simple idea.  The same goes for music.  The
  same goes for a drawing.  That riff in the middle of the song could have
  been the starting point for its writer.  To you, it's a central point in
  the song.  It might not even be all that significant to you.  It might
  not even be anything more than a drum riff.  It might not be anything
  more than a given sample as it chimes out at random points in the song.
  Does that matter to you, the listener?  I doubt it.  I doubt that the
  song's writer thinks so as well.  I would even wager that the song's
  writer doesn't much care.  But to the writer, he knows that it was the
  single, most inspirational piece to the song.  At least to him.

     I wrote a song the other day.  It's a pretty good one, and I might
  even release it to the public.  I realized the answer to my girlfriend's
  question when I sat back and listened to a pre-mix of the song.  My
  starting point for the song was actually the ending.  It sounds crazy,
  but my inspiration was a laugh from a girl at work.  It's a crazy laugh,
  and it often annoys me.  But she laughed at something I said last
  week...and it chimed in my head.  I got home on thursday night, and sat
  down at my computer and my synth.  I started playing with the sounds on
  my synth to see if I could duplicate the sounds of that girls laugh.  I
  was able to, and started forming a song around it.  That became the end
  of the song.  6 notes is all that came from that.  Those notes were
  played on an oboe, and it doesn't really resemble the laugh at all.  In
  a 4 minute song, it really only makes up about 3 seconds.  Who knew that
  I would be able to devise a tune from such a laugh (an awful one at
  that).  What would really happen if I didn't do something stupid enough
  to make this girl laugh (at me)?  Would I not have a song?  Honestly, I
  might still have a song.  I can force a song.  I can create music all
  the time.  But it wouldn't be tight.  It wouldn't sound nearly as clean
  or as inpsired as this song would.  The best music, the best art, the
  best demos all have something in common.  They come from great
  inspiration.

     Inspiration comes from many places.  Most are natural.  Most
  inspirations are as simple as paying more attention to your mother when
  she talks to you.  Many are even as simple as watching parts of a movie
  that aren't in focus.  Look at the things that you aren't supposed to.
  Listen to the things that are just out of ear shot.  Feel the things
  that you might often ignore.  Inspiration is about the things that the
  average guy doesn't notice.  It's about the things that are often
  overlooked.

     So when you go about your daily routine tomorrow...stop and smell
  those flowers.  When you hear, see or feel something new, think about
  what you can derive from it.  It might be the next competition winner.

                --Coplan


--=--=--
--=--=------=--=------=--=----
  Early Dawn Reflections
     Unfinished Business
  By: The Watcher
----=--=------=--=------=--=--

     Saturday morning, back home after a mid-week spent in Disneyland Paris.
  After days and days of roller coasters, puppets, dreams, and an almost
  deadly dose of "it's a small world", I can't wait to get back at my
  desk, put Audiophonik in my CD-player, and crank up the volume. Of
  course it was good fun, but I'm sure glad to dive back into the
  demoscene, where the real magic is happening.

     Every so often, I get a little depressed by the sheer amount of
  unfinished scene-material rotting away in 'temp', 'test' and 'scratch'
  folders on my harddisk. I know I am not alone in this, I think almost
  every scener, be it coder, musician or graphician, struggles with the
  fact that less than 40% of the things that takes us so much effort to
  produce, actually ends up as part of a finished production. So much time
  and energy we waste on fragments of code that produce not quite the cool
  visual effect hoped for, single patterns of soul-moving, hearth-pumping
  melody that somehow won't fit into any song at all, brilliant details in
  drawings that are thrown away for being ugly as a whole.

     Although I've always been the first to complain about this rather
  frustrating aspect of the demoscene, of late I am starting to realize
  that maybe it is not such a bad thing at all. Finishing things is hard
  work, and the last 10% of any production always takes up about 90% of
  the total time. That last 10% is also the least rewarding part, since
  all the fun stuff has been done and, worst of all, there is nothing left
  to learn from the production. All this from a coder's perspective of
  course, but I guess it must be pretty much the same for all you
  performers of the arts of color and sound. Unless the production is
  really worth it, finishing it just isn't fun. And fun is what this is
  all about. If I wanted to code boring stuff, I could just sit at the
  office and earn money while doing so.

     Imagine what would happen if we would always finish every single thing
  we started. Not only would we all be peevish and cranky because of our
  miserable, boring hobby, the demoscene would be flooded with worthless
  pieces of work! Just think of what it would do to the overall quality of
  the scene if every crappy experiment you ever started (after, say, you
  just broke up with your girl and just reached the bottom of the bottle)
  was made into a full-blown production. Not the kind of things I would
  like to see topping the scene-charts, definitely.

     One way to look at it is that by discontinuing projects that aren't
  promising enough, we perform natural selection. Assuming that works, fun
  enough to finish, are also the ones most renewing and creative (which I
  think is a quite safe assumption), it is simply a case of survival of
  the fittest. I think Darwin would be proud of us! (Note: Yes, I know
  that his evolutionary theory is actually all about propagating, but for
  the sake of decency let's keep away from disturbing alliterations like
  copulating code, mating music and groin-grinding graphics). So please,
  don't feel too sad about flushing another project. In a way you are
  saving the scene from extinction!

                --The Watcher

     P.S. Off-topic piece of advice: when playing oldschool SID files using
  winamp, don't forget to turn off winamp's preamp first. I think I might
  be needing a new pair of speakers now. And a new pair of ears too.


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

  Portals:

      SceneSpot (Home of Static Line).......http://www.scenespot.org
      CFXweb.......................................http://cfxweb.net
      Czech Scene................................http://www.scene.cz
      Danish Scene..............................http://demo-scene.dk
      Demoscene.org.........................http://www.demoscene.org
      Demo.org...................................http://www.demo.org
      Diskmag.de...................................http://diskmag.de
      Hungarian Scene........................http://www.scene-hu.com
      Italian Scene...........................http://run.to/la_scena
      ModPlug Central Resources..........http://www.castlex.com/mods
      Norwegian Scene........................http://www.demoscene.no
      Orange Juice.............................http://www.ojuice.net
      Planet Zeus..........................http://www.planetzeus.net
      Polish Scene...........................http://www.demoscena.pl
      Pouet.net.................................http://www.pouet.net
      Russian Scene..........................http://www.demoscene.ru
      Scene.org.................................http://www.scene.org
      Scenet....................................http://www.scenet.de
      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://www.alienprophets.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
      Dc5.........................................http://www.dc5.org
      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.chillproductions.com
      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
      Hellven.................................http://www.hellven.org
      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
      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
      Miasmah.............................http://www.miasmah.cjb.net
      Milk.......................................http://milk.sgic.fi
      Mo'playaz..........................http://ssmedion.de/moplayaz
      Mono211.................................http://www.mono211.com
      Morbid Minds..............http://www.raveordie.com/morbidminds
      Moods.............................http://www.moodymusic.de.vu/
      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
      Jurassic Pack...........................www.jurassicpack.de.vu
      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
      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:

  <*> MindCandy DVD......................http://www.mindcandydvd.com
      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
      Demo secret parts....http://www.inf.bme.hu/~mandula/secret.txt
      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
      Textmode Demo Archive.................http://tmda.planet-d.net
      #trax e-mail list.............................................
         .............http://www.scenespot.org/mailman/listinfo/trax
      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


--=--=--
----=--=------=--=------=--=------=--=------=--=------=--=------=--=------

  -=- Staff -=-
  Editor:          Coplan / D. Travis North / coplan@scenespot.org
  Staff Writers:   Coplan / D. Travis North / coplan@scenespot.org
                    Dilvie / Eric Hamilton / dilvie@yahoo.com
                    Novus / Vince Young / vince_young@hotmail.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
                    Vill / Brian Frank / darkvill@yahoo.com
                    The Watcher / Paul-Jan Pauptit / watcher@tuhb.org
  Tech Consultant: 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 to 76 columns with two columns at the
  beginning of each line.  Please avoid foul language and high ascii
  characters.  Contributions (Plain Text) should be e-mailed to Coplan
  (coplan@scenespot.org) by the last Friday of each month.  New issues are
  released on the first Sunday of every month.

     See you next month!

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