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July 1999

Come together,
right now,

An editorial view from Mark Dodel, editor of the VOICE Newsletter editor@os2voice.org

Anyone who has frequented the Usenet OS/2 news groups has seen a mess lately. The usual nonsense from comp.os.os2.advocacy has spewed forth onto the apps, misc and other groups. The threads are beating each other as well as the topics over the head with a rage that one may expect on a Los Angeles highway, but not among folks devoted to using OS/2. I guess it proves that we are all human, but I for one have grown tired of it.

What has sparked this rampage? The fact that Stardock is negotiating to publish a new OS/2 client version based on the Aurora code base. Why anyone would react negatively to this, let alone violently is beyond me, but it's sad to see the usual microsoft lackeys actually appearing as the sane voices of reason in these exchanges. Has part of the OS/2 community gone round the bend?

It is time for people to stop the bickering, name calling and other idiotic infighting. If you don't want to have anything to do with the Stardock client, then don't buy it, but stop trying to put a monkey wrench in the process and keep me from having that option. I have spoken about choice in the past, pointing out our support for IACT's Freedom of Choice project <http://www.os2voice.org/voice-iact/choice.html> and also the Linux run Windows Refund Day project. Instead of attacking people who are trying to do something to improve the current OS/2 scene, why not take up a campaign to expose the dirty dealing between microsoft and IBM that has brought about the cessation of marketing this fine operating system? See the note at the bottom of this page for the USDOJ address Or you can be inspired to use microsoft's facilities to send a letter to your representatives in Congress about the Microsoft Trial. For more on this read my letter to my congressman in the Letters section.

So folks let's come together instead of breaking apart. If you have a local OS/2 users group join it. Consider joining VOICE <http://www.os2voice.org/membership.html> and SCOUG <http://www.scoug.com> for it's IRC get-together's and Help sessions. Consider joining POSSI <http://www.possi.org> and get the bonus of a printed OS/2 magazine monthly. Become active in VOICE. We need your help with the Warp Doctor online help project, with our presence at OS/2 conventions like Warpstock99 <http://www.warpstock.org>, Warpstock Europe <http://www.warpstock.de> and the Warp Expo West <http://www.scoug.com/warpexpowest/>. With all this activity going on, there is little time/energy we can afford to waste on nonsense. And hey, don't forget our humble newsletter. We can use any help you can provide with reviews and letters.

Speaking of getting active with VOICE, we now have a Co-ordinator of Volunteers for VOICE for Warpstock 99. He is Bob Wagstaff. Bob can be reached at wagstaff@lenzlink.net or as five9guy on Undernet. If you are going to Warpstock 99, please consider helping out by spending an hour in the VOICE booth, helping to signup new VOICE members. Also if you are going to Warpstock Europe or Warp Expo West, please contact abraxas@os2voice.org as we need folks to distribute VOICE literature at these events also.

In the spirit of co-operating with other OS/2 organizations, VOICE has recently agreed to co-sponsor the Warpicity Speakup on CompuServe's OS/2 Central Forum. On July 12th, 8PM EDT, VOICE welcomed Lynn Maxson for this out-of-the-mold speakup session focusing on his Warpicity Proposal (that's not to be confused with WarpCity, I had to look at it twice before I saw the extra "i"). It was interesting to mingle with folks I don't see on IRC, Usenet or the mail lists. Hopefully we can all begin to function more with one VOICE at least in regard to our support of OS/2. For a transcript of this session, read all about it here - http://www.os2voice.org/logs/V071299.LOG.html.

On July 24th, we welcome back the Warpstock99 team for our annual Warpstock kickoff event on IRC. As in the past VOICE will be giving one lucky member a one night hotel stay and Warpstock99 ticket. In addition we will have at least one other prize for folks unable to go to Warpstock this year. So please make sure to come to this Speakup session and get in on the fun. In our quest to make our events more International friendly, we've scheduled it on a Saturday at 1PM EDT (6PM GMT). And on August the 2nd 8PM EDT we welcome back Sundial Systems with yet another Speakup with Sundial event. The focus for Sundial's session will be a brand new product, code-named Kiwi, which is a valuable tool for detecting and filtering out junk email. On August 12th, this time at 1PM EDT we welcome Brian Smith to a Speakup on the EverBlue Project. This is the Netlabs project to port XLib to OS/2 PM thus allowing XWindows apps (Like the Gimp) to run under PM instead of requiring XFree/86. As always, please be sure to check out the updated VOICE Future events Calendar in this newsletter or on the VOICE website at <http://www.os2voice.org/calendar.html> for more details on future VOICE events.

In this issue of the VOICE Newsletter I have an article on RSJ CD Writer for OS/2 and the Yamaha 4416SX CDR/W Drive. Then Gerry DePetro reviews the long awaited removable media drive from Castlewood in Enter the ORB. The Orb looks like a winner. Dan Dan Casey asks you to Show your Support; Warpstock 99, where VOICE put out a challenge to other groups to match $500 toward a Warpstock 99 social event. And Mensys has <http://www.mensys.nl> quickly answered the challenge. Next up in a short piece, I tweak IBM's blue nose with Form Letter Alert after a heads up from Dan Eicher about a response (or non-response actually) he received to a letter of complaint he sent to Lou Gerstner - http://www.ibm.com/cgi-bin/email-lvg.pl. And wrapping things up as usual in the VIEW from the End(User), by Don Eitner . Don is starting to program in REXX and shares his insights in Learning REXX The Photo>Graphics Way.

We are always interested in your thoughts and views on subjects related to OS/2, and would like to see opinion/editorial pieces as well as hardware/software reviews. To that end, and because of several recent requests, we have added a Guidelines for Article Submissions to the VOICE Newsletter.

Mark Dodel
Editor, VOICE Newsletter

If you want to express your feelings on the way IBM has abandoned OS/2 users in it's quest to appease bill gates, please write a letter to the US DOJ and tell them how you feel. For an example of a letter I sent to the USDOJ

Joel I. Klein
Assistant Attorney General
Antitrust Division
U.S. Department of Justice
601 D Street, NW
Washington, DC 20530

The email address is antitrust@justice.usdoj.gov, however I believe a written communication has more effect then electronic.

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