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MacEdition Pro News: 20 June

Are the furnaces “Intel Inside” too?

Intel seems intent on buying its way into just about every possible avenue it can to influence educators’ choice of computing hardware. From The New York Times on the Web comes this thrilling piece of news: “Intel Corp. and local school officials will introduce a mortgage-assistance program Monday to help teachers buy homes in the nation’s most expensive housing market.”

Obviously, Intel has other less-sinister motives too, since it is headquartered in the area and desires to be a good corporate neighbor. But with other moves the company has made in recent times (including the recent flap over disabling student kiosks because they displayed a competitor’s logo), one has to wonder about this. Not to mention being indebted to the old company store...

(from the article) “The district will use the fund to pay $500 a month toward each eligible teacher’s mortgage payment for up to five years and share in each home’s appreciation or depreciation as an equity investor. At the end of five years, or sooner if the teacher leaves the district, the home owner repays the district, and the funds are reused.”

If the teacher can’t afford the payments now, they’re going to be able to in five years (in addition to repaying the fund)? Maybe, but this is one for the “check back in six years to see how it’s going” file.

“... they had games with very little soul”

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A heads-up to every game maker: there’s more to a good game than cool graphics and digitally-enhanced sound effects. The Austin-American Statesman tells us about how pinball machines are fading from the landscape.

What the heck does that have to do with the Macintosh? More than you might think. Many games just don’t seem to sell as well for the Macintosh and companies are left scratching their collective heads about it. Sure, lousy ports of two-year-old PC games are largely responsible. But even with the somewhat recent onset of quality porting houses, few truly playable games are coming to the Macintosh. It takes much more than spiffy graphics, bloody corpses, and a marketing budget to capture the minds of discriminating users – a crowd to which MacOS users have firmly belonged for years.

So, to every company thinking about creating games: learn the lessons of the past well and there are huge opportunities. Well-crafted, immersive gameplay will go far in making that game a success. Why else would MAME and MacMAME have such effort being poured into them? Pac-Man sure didn’t use full-motion video.

Link Hogthrob would be proud.

This was a big week for space-bound news. First, there was word that SkyCorp would be sending Apple products into space, and now, old rival Tandy – or should we say, Radio Shack – will be doing a bit of extraterrestrial work of their own.

Commercial lunar landings, logos on the moon, even test flights in the Canadian Arctic! Is that a Z-80 in your lander or are you just happy to be there?

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