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   Date:  November 5, 1991
 Target:  John Sokol
 Source:  Alan Deikman
Content:  New Product

Thank you for taking the time to talk with me last weekend.
I found your product ideas very interesting, and I would
like to present them to the investors on our meeting this
Thursday.  In order to do this, I will need a project
write-up for each product, which I have started below.  

Please look these over and add your own comments/edits/
corrections/rewrites as you feel appropriate.  My notes from
our conversation were somewhat sketchy, and may be
completely inaccurate.

After Thursday, it will be likely that we will want to meet
on the weekend.  We can discuss that later.


* Product Name:  Audio Byte (Pocket-Sound).  (suggested)

* Description:  Audio Byte (Pocket-Sound) is a small device that plugs
into the parallel port of a PC and provides an audio
output to be connected to the input of an amplifier.  An
accompanying software disk provides DOS programs for generating
music and other sounds.

The Audio Byte (Pocket-Sound) device is very simple to construct, and
uses commonly available components.  It is capable of
producing signals, at frequencies up to 22KHz,

{ sample rates of up to 44 Khz - same a CD lazer disks }

well beyond the range of hearing.  The simple design places
a large dependence on the software support, which controls the
generation of the sound using the PC's internal timer.

* Target Retail Price:  $60-$40.
                        (A mass production price of $12 is hoped.)

{ $10 is our current manufacturing cost
  in production quantities (50,000) it is expected to go as low as $1.40 ea.
  this figure is from William Volk of Activision whose device has lower
  sound quality (admitted by him) and a more complicated design ).

* Estimated Cost:  $10 including packaging, floppy disks (both
5 1/2 and 3 1/4), and tutorial manual.  Royalty fee has not
been determined.

* Cost of Development:  Existing product is already in home
production and debugged, so further development will be
marketing, packaging, API (Application Programers Interface), etc.

* Customer Type:  Home computer buyer predominately, but can
be sold as "low end" multi-media extension to MS Windows

* Marketing Analyses/Information:  The low-end sound device 
market for the PC is currently dominated by the "Sound 
Blaster" card, which currently sells through JDR (for 
example) for $169.  The sound-blaster is more capable
than the Audio Byte (Pocket-Sound), but many coutomers have said that
the sound quality is better with the  Audio Byte (Pocket-Sound) and
device delivers most of the same functionality for 25% of the cost.

The Audio Byte (Pocket-Sound) has the following advantages over the Sound

  1.  Much lower cost, more likely to be sold in home
  2.  Uses a parallel port instead of an I/O slot, making
      it usable with portable computers
  3.  Ease of installation, no need to open the computer

Opposed to this, the Sound-Blaster is supported by a wide
variety of software products, and is shipping in volume.
Critical to the success of such a venture as the
Audio Byte (Pocket-Sound), it will be necessary to recruit
software vendors and convince them to include support for the
Audio Byte (Pocket-Sound) in their products.  The developers have
already contacted Microsoft and other software vendors with some
very positive response.

There is also the possibility of supporting certain API
(Application Program Interface) standards for sound, most
notably through Microsoft's multi-media extensions to

Products similar to this one are already under development
at competition such as Activision, Covox, and Silicon Shack.
These compaines committment to this product will have to be

The Audio Byte (Pocket-Sound) can pave the way for higher-end follow-up
products that support more features, such as polyphonic sound and stereo.

* Features/Benefits:

        1.  A later start on the production of the audio byte
            has permitted the developers to not repeat the errors
            that have plagued it's competitors.

        2.  It's relatively low price will permit mass market
            penitration, with the correct marketing.

        3.  It's Simple design allows for many other follow up
            products of much more lucrative profit margin.

        4.  The interface is simple enough to become a possible
            industry standard, adaping alreading existing sound
            software can be in usualy less than an hour.

        5.  Installation does not require user to open computer, and
            there is no software setup and are no jumpers or addresses
            to figure out.

        6.  Low manufactureing cost will permit bundling device
            free with software packages already on market.

* Product Name:  Data-Beam (suggested)

* Description:  The Data-Beam is a point-to-point
communications device that uses an infrared laser for data
transmission.  Current prototypes have a 1MHz bandwidth, which will allow
up to 300K+ bytes/second Full-duplex data transmission under
a standard error correction/compression protocol over
distances of 20 miles and further.  It is should be possible to
improve date rates with further development.
Higher data transfer rates can also be achieved with shorter distances.

Although the laser communications is line-of-sight, it is
possible to set up reflector stations with simple mirrors to
complete a circuit.  Refined optical techniques and improved amplifier designs
are used to generate high performance from standard parts.

* Target Retail Price:  $1500 to $5000, including per trancievers.

* Estimated Cost:  $300 to $500 for components plus labor.

* Cost of Development:  The developers expect to have a
working prototype by the end of December.  Further
development will include product testing, compliance
testing, beta-testing, packaging and marketing.

* Customer Type:  Typical application will be inter-building
communications for business and institutions where hard-wire
hook-ups are not practical or cost effective.

* Marketing Analyses/Information:  
The Data-Beam provides a solution for connecting two
systems that are within a close geographic area, but not
within the same building.  Architecturally, the Data-Beam
is continuously available data path which can be used as a
high speed serial data link.  It is possible that the device
can also find application in field communications, or in
special situations within buildings (for example, across a
factory floor) where the cost of running a cable is greater
than purchasing the Data-Beam.

The developers were intending that the device to be used as a
UNIX-to-UNIX system connection, which would take care of 
most of the protocol issues.  It can also be used to connect two
LAN servers together (such as Novell or Lantastic) to make the link
a LAN-to-LAN bridge.

Since the radiation of the Data-Beam is not radio, the user 
does not need to register or license the use of this device with 
the FCC or any other authority.

It is not currently known to what extent weather will affect
the operation of the Data-Beam, although preliminary studies
show that rain and fog at normal levels are transparent.

A list of competing products has not yet been compiled,
although preliminary data shows that other products cost
much more than the projected cost of the Data-Beam.
There are no other known commercialy available devices capable
of the speeds and distances available with this system.

* Features/Benefits:

        1.  Freedom from complications with using Commom Carriers.
            ( Radio interferance )

        2.  Higher level of data security than with radio/microwaves

        3.  Fast installation time , It is expected from preliminary
            tests that setup will only take aroung 30 Min to and hour.

        4.  There are none of the upfront or monthy costs involved with
            copper cable , Fiber optic or leased line systems.

        5.  Used where local enviromental issues do not permit
            the use of underground or pole mounted cabling.

        6.  Extremely useful for remote System placement
            or temporary installations.

        7.  Well facilitated for Fault-Tolerant Systems.

* drawbacks

        1.  Under heavy fog, snow or other severe weather communication
            may temporaraly stop.

        2.  May require having lenses cleaned about once a year, and is
            subject to dirt contanination on the lenes