· · EXECUTIVE UPDATE
March 10, 2000
With all of the continuing rumors out there,one would think that we were gone, or just spending the money that we raised on homes inHawaii, or doing nothing.
I can assure you that this is not the case. As mentioned in the previous update, if you do notread it here do not believe it.
This months letter is going to be a long one,and I apologize in advance for the length. Thereis a lot of information here so take your time.
Recently I received an e-mail message thatbrought to my attention a sad reality.
When Gateway purchased Amiga in 1997 theymade many promises, and in fact there were 6 different product announcements during theirtenure. I was involved with two of them, QNX,and Linux.
While I believed that we were going todeliver on the two product versions that I was involved in, they did not materialize, andit has hurt many of you. The decisions tochange or alter either of these announcements was not mine, but I was a part of the teamthat was involved in both. For this I am verysorry.
It is because of the reasons mentioned abovethat I promised not to say anything or announce anything until it was done, and ready.
I know that this is difficult, especiallywith the number of great people and Amiga companies who are feeling the continued strain,but I did not want to have us all go through any more false starts, and undelivereddreams.
April 1, 2000 is the date, and St. Louis isthe place. This is the first opportunity foryour Amiga company to present, demonstrate, speak, and see the first productto come out of Amiga The new Developer System. In fact one lucky show attendee will win one of these systems.
With all of the above said; Another month,and a great deal of work has been completed. Manyof you believe nothing is happening, I can assure you that a great deal has beenoccurring.
Amiga So the World May Know.
There have been some great new hires, manynew partnerships and great progress as we are moving forward. There is more information about them mentionedbelow.
The first of course was theannouncement with Tao-Group which has been moving along great. In St. Louis we will be showing the first round ofthe Amiga/Tao system. There is a great dealof work to be done, but we are far enough along to launch the new developer system for Taoat the show.
Haage & Partner
We have entered into a long termrelationship with H&P that will provide APIs and a path towards to the futureOS. This includes new updated versions ofStorm IDE. They have also committed toporting all of their software to the new platform.
We are also excited to work withH&P on a new version of the WarpOS that will allow the new Amiga to run on PPCaccelerator cards. This means that an Amigathat has a PPC card running WarpOS will be able to run the new Amiga on that card! Thats right. The new Amiga running on the current A1200s!
More on H&P will becomepublic as we continue to move forward and work through the testing programs.
We are very excited about thisrelationship.
Hyperion and Amiga have enteredinto an agreement for the porting of the existing and new games to the new Amiga. This along with the great work that Ben and histeam have done in working on a new 3D gaming engine for the new Amiga. They have been working very closely with the Amigadevelopment team and Tao-Group to make the development of games for the Amiga a cut abovethe rest. We are very pleased to be have themas members of the new team.
Thomas Steiding has been a greatsupporter from the beginning. Epic hasannounced that not only will they be making their games available on the new system, butthat they have secured the rights for many new games. More on Epic with a follow on announcement later.
There are many more partnerships that will berevealed in St. Louis with even more exciting news.
Where to start. I continue to receive hundreds of e-mailseveryday, and while I am not the only one on the team who seems to be living on e-mail, wehave not been able to answer as many as we would like.
We are listening,and working on many of your comments. Hereare some of your concerns and what we have been doing to help:
Phase 5 and their recent changes.
We have been in contact with Mr. ThomasDellert, and Mr. Stefan Domeyer, and we are working with both DCE, and Met@box to provide solutions for the Amiga market and we expectsome great news soon. I can say that theconversations have been going very well, and we look forward to working towards anexciting future with both of these companies.
One of the key benefits with therelationships that we have been able to strike with both of these firms is their long termcommitment to Amiga.
According to our initial conversations, andproject plans we are working to ensure that the new Amiga will run on both of the PPCboards supplied by these companies.
We will be providing more detail in productannouncements from both firms.
Dealer and distributors have beencontacting us about their current situations and future plans.
In response to the many requests we havecreated the Amiga Dealer Network, or A D N. Randy Hughes our VP of Sales (more about him later) sent out an e-mailmessage to over 300 dealers, and the response has been fantastic. Many dealers are ready to begin carrying the Amigaagain, and more are very excited about the future. TheA D N is a way for us to better communicate our plans, hear concerns, and work together tocreate a stronger Amiga. As I am sure thatyou will see there are great things to come from the A D N.
Remember that we plan on being able to runthe New OS on PPC boards. Does your machinesupport that option?
Developers and the futuredevelopment plans.
Training sessions at Tao-Group have beencontinuing for some months now, and we have a better relationship today than when westarted, and we are more convinced than ever that our decision was the right one. There will be opportunity in St. Louis for othersto see the Tao-System at work, and we look forward to seeing all of you there.
We also will be having a developer meeting inSt. Louis on March 31st at 7:00pm. This is adeveloper only meeting, and we will be giving information about the hardware, softwaretools, and the developer support program. Weknow that there is going to great interest in this seminar to plan ahead and get thereearly as space is limited.
Please check the St. Louis show site, and theAmiga sites for more information.
Communication with the AmigaCommunity.
We have contracted with Equinox Design tocreate the new Amiga World newsletter. Thiswill be available for free to all of the Amiga community. Initially this will be made available via the Internet from our new websiteand then (if demand merits) we will make a printed version. This is not in anyway in competition with the existing Amiga publicationsthat currently are in print. This instead istargeted as a newsletter designed as a vehicle to help the community communicate bettertogether. The Editor of Amiga World is Fletcher Haug, the former Editor and Publisher ofthe Amiga Informer. The first edition shouldbe available within the first two weeks of April.
There are no advertisements, and we are usingthis as another method to get information out to all of you, and to help the publicationsthat we have today.
More Communications with the AmigaCommunity.
As mentioned in the past update, I havereactivated the AAC. There have been somegreat discussions and great ideas to come out of the conversations to date, and they willbe a great help in the future as we move forward. Themembers of the AAC are:
We will soon be reactivating theiraac.amiga.com mail accounts.
New Faces for the Team
There are many new people atAmiga, and we are excited about the team that we are continuing to build. Below you will find some specific detail oncertain team members, here you will find the names and descriptions of the folks that Iget to work the most closely with.
Randall P. Hughes VP Sales and StrategicBusiness Development
Randy comes to us after being the VP of Salesat a very exciting Java technologies company ThinWeb. Randy and I worked together when he was my primary contact at QNX. He is a very skilled person with backgrounds inBanking, and technology. Randy understandsthe Amiga, and what the future brings. He hashad business dealings with some of the strongest technology companies in the world. He was the person that QNX selected to open theirfirst office in California. I know that youwill enjoy meeting him in St. Louis.
Now the official comments that will be goingup on the web site later;
Mr Hughes comes to Amiga directly from a Javabased start up where he headed the sales and alliances function from inception to itsfiling for IPO on the NASDAQ exchange.
Randy was initiated to the Amiga community asthe lead manager responsible for the relationship with Amiga during his tenure at QNXwhere he headed the expansion to Silicon Valley and into Southern California.
Randy was first and foremost a financier fromhis days at notable Canadian financial institutions, namely the Bank of Montreal and RoyalBank.
Randy was educated at the University ofOttawa, Canada and at Marlborough College in England.
Vincent P. Pfeifer VP of Operations
Vince and I worked together for several yearsat ConnectSoft. Vince has an incredibleability to deliver products. I have seen himtime and again walk into extremely difficult situations with very hard headed engineersand stupid marketing people, and deliver amazing products. I am very pleased that he has agreed to join us.
Here is his official web site description;
VincePfeifer has 14 years experience in the computer industry with the last 12 spent in thesoftware area. Vince joins us from GraphOnCorporation where, as Vice President of Product Development and General Manager of GraphOnsSeattle based operations, he oversaw all Engineering resources for GraphOns multipledevelopment sites. During his tenure atGraphOn, sales tripled while product offerings doubled. Additionally, Vince helped oversee the merger that made GraphOn a publiclytraded company whose Market Capitalization quadrupled in under a year.
Vincehas hands-on experience building and managing software development operations as well asproduct management organizations. Vince hasexperience with both startup organizations (ConnectSoft, Exodus Technologies, GraphOn) aswell as more established companies (Symantec).
Why I joinedAmiga, by Vincent P. Pfeifer
Other than thebelief that Bill McEwen could sell ice cubes to Eskimos, I joined Amiga to take on thechallenge of turning a companys name and image that has become somewhat dated herein the United States into a top level, respected company in the computer industry. As I am coming off a successful venture in helpingturn GraphOn into a publicly traded company with record revenues from the position of VicePresident of Product Development, I was ready for a new set of responsibilities in moreareas than Product Management and Engineering.
Amiga offers achallenge that I look forward to: build a company from the bottom up with the benefit ofhaving name recognition and some technology already in place.
It is anopportunity to do something that I have wanted to do since my early days at 5th Generationwhen I sat on the Tech Support phones and listened to average users try to use relativelycomplicated software. I know that it sounds like a religious crusade, but I want to makecomputers easier for the masses, and with my position at Amiga, I have an opportunity tohelp influence that vision significantly.
Gary Peake Director of Developer Relationsand Support
My favorite man from Texas. Gary has already put thousands of hours of hislife to support the Amiga, and the community worldwide. Now he has joined our team in delivering his years of experience andaffection for the Amiga in supporting the efforts of the Amiga community.
Tarah Mallo Reception and Office
Tarah is our first line of communication tothe outside world. She has been working withthe development team gathering information and support. As well as helping me to get organized. I will state for the record that the pictures of the original office weretaken before she joined. Sayhello to Tarah the next time you call.
Kari Erickson Executive Administration
Kari is the person who will keep my life andtravel plans in order. She is who you willget to speak to first before getting me, or any other member of the executive team. Kari joins us after leaving one of the veryprestigious law firms here in the Seattle area, and I am sure that you can already feelher pain in having to deal with me on a day to day basis.
Susan Sutton Director of Finance and HumanResources
Susan is going to take over the collection offunds, and the paying of bills. She is alsothe person who gets to deal with all of the employee complaints about Fleecy. Just kidding there are more complaints about me,than there are Fleecy.
Gordon Stone Director of Information Servicesand Information Technologies
We refer to Gordon as the network man. Gordon got his start in computing by upgradingAmiga memory for recording studios in Oregon. Hehas since moved onto operating numerous systems, and is versed in all that isconnectivity. Gordon actually will start intwo weeks, but we wanted to introduce him now.
Operations in Germany New Members on our team
Markus Grohmann - Order processing and EDP
Markus already has a family history withAmiga, as his brother used to work with us in Braunschweig. We look forward to working with Markus.
Barbara Nitzsche Executive Assistant to Petro
With the addition of Barbara to our team inGermany we will be able to have Petro out more. Nexttime you call Langen say hello to Barbara and welcome her to Amiga.
Members of the Development Team
Dean Brown - Dean founded DKB weeksafter the first A1000 came out and then spent the next 15 years designing and producingall manner of add ons, expansion cards and accelerators for the whole range of Amigacomputers. He brings a deep understanding of the spirit and reality of the Amiga hardware,along with an almost encyclopedic knowledge of current and future projects. He will usethis to help Amiga and its partners create multiple hardware platforms for the future.
Dave Taylor - Dave is another scouser,from Liverpool, UK, although he supports the wrong football team. He has spent the lastten years designing and implementing distributed manufacturing, control, and eCommercesystems for small, medium, and large companies across the globe, on Mainframe, Unix andWindows architectures. The last 3 years have seen him concentrating on distributedsystems, databases, and n tier commercial systems. He brings commercial world experience,eCommerce expertise and formal methods with a refreshing new look on architecture to thecompany, and was also brave enough to try snowboarding with Wouter and myself.
Wouter van Oortmerssen - Wouter is atall, dutch, quake master currently completing his doctorate at Southampton University. Hehas been an Amigan since the early 1990's and is most well known for the excellent Amiga Elanguage and compiler that grew from a research project into a professional system. He isbringing a fresh look at language, conversation and interaction in the new Amiverse.
Andreas Kleinert - Andreas has workedfor the last few years producing public domain, shareware, and commercial applications forthe Amiga, PC and UNIX markets. For the Amiga market, Andreas concentrated on variousgraphics and datatype systems before taking up the challenge of lead developer for theSuperBase database product line. His deep knowledge of data storage, retrieval andindexing is core to creating a self describing and multi dimensional amiverse.
Trond Werner Hansen - Some people areleg men, others are face men. Trond is most definitely a face man - INTERFACE man 8-) Overthe last seven years he has moved from small programs to enhance workbench, throughcompletely reimplementing layers.library as SuperLayers, to developing a NG Amigaworkbench system. With configurability and simplicity being central features for theAmiverse, Trond will be helping to redefine presentation and participation in digitalworlds.
The Amiga Developer Support Network Crew!
Gary Peake <email@example.com>
Gary has used and beta tested on mostCommodore/Amiga computers from the Vic-20 to the A3000. His organizational, design, andtesting skills will be a valuable asset to providing a unique, forward looking onlinedeveloper support system that will set many "firsts" in the computer industry.And his association with Team Amiga will enable Amiga Inc. to provide a valuablemulti-national scope to Amiga Developer Support. Gary has many years of experience withonline web applications and will utilize his experience to provide an evolving DeveloperSupport structure that will grow with us and our Amiga developers. Gary is also a currentmember of the 3D Development Team.
Gary will host our first Amiga DevCon in StLouis on Friday March 31st and will be there to answer questions on an individual basisthrough April 2nd. The full program details will not be announced until then, but alldevelopers wishing more information should contact Gary Peake at firstname.lastname@example.org .
For information on the time and place of theDevCon contact Bob Sharpe at email@example.com
Ray A. Akey <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Ray is the creator of CNet BBS for the AmigaClassic and has been
programming for the Amiga for a number ofyears. Ray's understanding of all areas of product development from concept to coding totesting to finished product gives us a unique look at all areas of Amiga Developer Supportneeds. Ray's experience with Internet application programming will prove extremely helpfulfor the future of the Amiga. Ray will also be assisting in maintaining some of the onlinesystems we will employ. Ray currently lives in Canada.
G'o'tz Ohnesorge <email@example.com>
G'o'tz is one of the most aware Amigan's Iknow in dealing with cutting edge products and issues. He has been an Amiga user sincethey were first available. G'o'tz is a quick study on high-end multimedia and newtechnologies. His expertise in getting the facts quickly and succinctly
will aid us in all areas of developersupport. He will be assisting in keeping information current and available for newdevelopers in the several online systems we will be providing. G'o'tz's knowledge ofseveral languages will help the new Amiga Developer Support System to be trulymulti-national. He is a current member of the Amiga 3D Development Team, as well. G'o'tzcurrently lives in Germany.
Jonas Gustavsson <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Jonas is a long time Amiga user and hasexcellent experience in programming, testing and using high-end digital/multimediaapplications. He has worked with 64 bit Alpha's under heavy multi-media use. Jonas'primary areas of interest is digital graphics, high-end multimedia, video editing andtitling, and he has experience working in the commercial tv and movie industry as well.Jonas speaks several languages as well and will be an exceptional asset to the AmigaDeveloper Support System in assisting us to be multi-national. He is also currently amember of the Amiga 3D Development Team. Jonas currently lives in Sweden.
We have spending a great deal of time oninfrastructure and getting ready for the next wave.
One of the first problems was in the area ofReal Estate, we currently are in 600 feet with us bulging out the walls, and being locatedoutside of a car wash has its benefits, but it is still rather annoying with all of thecar stereos going at the same time outside your front door.
We are in the process of moving to our newworld headquarters in Snoqualmie, Washington. Thenew address will be;
34935 SE Douglas Street
Snoqualmie, WA 98065
Telephone number +001 425.396.5660
Facsimile number +001 425.396.6551
We officially open the doors and are up andrunning on March 15th, 2000. However we willbegin moving equipment, phones, servers, etc on Monday March 13th, 2000. This means that it may be more difficult to get intouch with over the next few days. Weapologize in advance for any hardship this may cause.
New Web Site!
This is one of the number one items on thelist, and the largest number of comments that we receive from the community.
We have been in process building a new website for some weeks. The difficulty has beenserver location and time. We have nowaddressed both of these issues and we plan to have a new site up in the next couple ofweeks.
A web site is a constant work in progress, sowe look forward to your comments, and will continue to try and enhance the experience.
This letter does not cover all of theactivities that are and continue to take place. Thereis so much more happening that I could spend days writing and still not keep up with itall.
We are extremelybusy here, and could not be having more fun. Thecompany and the people who have contacted us to support what we are doing have been inmany cases overwhelming. We have several morepartnerships that we are going to be announcing in St. Louis, and we hope to see as manyof you there as possible.
I recently askeda long time Amigan, and a member of the select team that worked with Jay directly thereason that Jay started this venture. I haveheard many ideas as to what Jay really wanted to do, and many e-mails informme that they know what Jay had planned all along. WhileI never had the chance of either meeting, or speaking with Jay I thought I would ask.
Simply statedJay wanted to build the greatest home computing experience ever, for under 500.00. I can tell you that his dream still lives withevery member of this company, and we will deliver on his dream.
I thank each andevery one of you for your continued support, and look forward to the future.
Bill McEwen, andthe rest of the Amiga team
Copyright by AMIGA