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October 2004

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News at VOICE

An editorial view from Christian Hennecke, Editor in Chief of the VOICE Newsletter.

In the past, VOICE had regularly conducted so-called Speakups - special IRC sessions where attendees could meet developers, vendors, and other people important for the OS/2 community and talk to them, ask questions as well as discuss certain topics. This stopped a while back due to organizational, technical, and personnel problems. Well, the Speakups are back!

The "I" in VOICE means "International." To be able to reach more people around the globe, VOICE has come up with the new strategy to hold every Speakup twice, at different dates and times — one targeting America and Europe, the other Asia and Australia. The first new Speakup took place on Saturday, September 11, 2004, with Jan van Wijk, the author of DFSee, the Swiss army knive of disk tools, as a guest. The second followed on September 25, 2004. Both lasted approximately two hours and were well-attended and pretty lively. As usual, the edited logs are available via our transcripts page, so you can see yourself.

We hope that we will be able to do a Speakup with people from Netlabs and the OS/2 User Group Dresden that covers the Firewire driver project. This project uses a new founding model and should be interesting for all who want OS/2 to survive. Other than that we need to know which topics you are interested in and whom you would like to talk to. Send your ideas for a Speakup to and we will see what we can do.

If you are not familiar with IRC, have a look at Mark Dodel's recent article ChatZilla - just a click and you are talking, VOICE's meeting info page and Judy McDermott's overview of IRC clients (you may have to turn off style sheets for the page to display). Reviews of IRC clients are also available for GTIRC 3.0 (VOICE Newsletter), GTIRC 2.0 (OS/2 e-Zine), and OpenChat/2. OS/2 e-Zine even had an issue on the topic. While being old most of the information still applies.

More things have been happening around VOICE. First, a new Board of Directors has been elected:

Roderick Klein
Walter Metcalf
John Edwards
Gordon Snider
Roderick Klein

For the detailed results, see the ballot page. I hope that some day someone will step forward for the position of Marketing/Liaison Officer to relieve our president Roderick Klein of his extremely packed schedule.

Second, our system administrator Ken Kirchner has continued his work on the VOICE home page. Besides the concurrently updated news from the VOICE News mailing list and the searchable archive, there now is a listing of recent uploads to the Hobbes software archive that is updated every 30 minutes and covers files in both the /pub/incoming and /pub/new directories. In addition, Ken is working on making the VOICE site more manageable.

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 and HowTo articles. If you have an idea for an article, why not write one. It's one of the best ways, short of programming native OS/2 applications, that you can help the OS/2 Community. And anyone can do it. Few of our writers are professionals. They are just OS/2 users trying to help other OS/2 users. Please send me your ideas or, better yet, a draft of an article to Please note our guidelines for submissions to the VOICE Newsletter. There you will find suggestions for topics, hints on content, structure and formatting, as well as the legalese.

VOICE Online Update: This month the general member meetings are scheduled on Saturdays October 2 and 16 at 3PM EDT (20:00 GMT). Everyone interested in OS/2 or eComStation is invited to attend either or both of these sessions in #VOICE on the Webbnet IRC network. For more information on attending online VOICE IRC meetings please see the VOICE Meeting Information page -

If you have an idea for a Speakup event, please submit it to, and we will try to schedule something. As always, please be sure to check out the updated VOICE Future events Calendar in this newsletter or on the VOICE website at for more details on future VOICE events.

This month, Thomas Klein provides us with some tips, tricks and workarounds for Embellish, a freely available graphics application. Read more in Embellish, revisited.

Serenity Systems has set out to further improve eComStation. In eComStation 1.2 - a first look, Walter Metcalf takes exactly that and reports on what to expect from the new version, both good and bad.

RSJ CD Writer has a habit of installing itself in a way that locks CD and DVD writers for its use exclusively. Peter Brown points out how to teach it to behave better and also allow access to writers as normal drives. Read more in CD/DVD ReWriters, RSJ and how to avoid RSJ "capturing" your writer at bootup.

In Getting and installing eComStation 1.2, Nick Lysaght tells a story about his experiences with the new version of eComStation in "down under".

Finally, we have our OS/2 Tips and Letters, Addenda, Errata pages. If you have any OS/2 or eCS tips you've uncovered, please send them to If you have any comments or suggestions about the newsletter or articles in it, please send them to

Upcoming articles include more in the series on DrDialog by Thomas Klein, as well more details on eComStation and the new and improved features by Walter Metcalf.

That's it for this month.

Christian Hennecke, Mark Dodel, Marckus Kraft, and Jason R. Stefanovich
VOICE Newsletter editors

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