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INSIDER REPORT
[17 October 2000] 

In brief

In July 2000, ELBOX Computer and Frank Mariak (VFD) negotiated and  agreed upon writing drivers for MEDIATOR PCI busboard.

Frank Mariak agreed to write the software with hardware and technical  documentation provided to him by ELBOX Computer as requested by him. 
He had never asked for cash reimbursement and never asked for making cash-based contract.

Frank Mariak was to write drivers dedicated for ELBOX hardware, to the order of ELBOX, based on an agreement between ELBOX  and himself.

Frank Mariak's long-term benefit was spreading and popularising his commercial product: CGX4.

Ultimately, Frank Mariak sold rights to these drivers in exclusive form to a third party, who are not affiliated with ELBOX Computer in any way. This transaction, with the following use of confidential ELBOX documentation within third-party agreements is clear-cut  breach of commercial law in any country in the world.

This step was thought to block developing highly-demanded software for Amiga computers. 

ELBOX Computer decided to clear this situation up in the following report. 

The last part of the report announces software solutions to make good the damage caused by Frank Mariak's decisions.

                                                                      Read more…
 

On Saturday, 14 Oct 2000

community of Amiga users were informed that an agreement was signed by virtue of which Mr. Frank Mariak (Vision Factory Development) transferred exclusive rights to Voodoo PCI drivers written by himself to a third party.

We, ELBOX Computer, feel obliged to make the entire situation clear to Amiga users world-wide, as the circumstances around this event are twisted again and again and give false image of the situation to public opinion.

Please find the below report as the clarification of what has been transpiring in the recent weeks behind the scenes.

Background

On 24 July 2000, Elbox Computer and Vision Factory Development jointly released an announcement on concluding an agreement, by virtue of which VFD undertook to develop support for PCI graphic  cards installed in the MEDIATOR PCI busboard. 
(See http://www.vgr.com/mediator/pressrelease1.txt)

Before this agreement was concluded, both parties negotiated and finally decided on some specific terms and conditions of co-operation as follows:

The key point of the agreement was that support for PCI graphic cards in CGX3 was to be devoid of hardware acceleration, which was to be fully developed in the CGX4 commercial version.

The parties decided to make the following commitments:

1. ELBOX Computer shall make the developer's documentation for the MEDIATOR PCI busboard available in order to complete the agreed work.

      The developer's documentation was transferred to 
      Mr. Frank Mariak on 14 July 2000.

2. ELBOX Computer will provide Vision Factor Development with computer hardware for preparing drivers for PCI graphic cards installed in the MEDIATOR PCI 1200 busboard, which Mr. Mariak needed at that time.

      ELBOX Computer sent the hardware: Amiga 1200 in E/BOX tower 
      with the developer's MEDIATOR PCI 1200 busboard, 1240 turbo 
      card, FastATA 1200 controller, a hard disk and other necessary 
      add-ons as well as S3 ViRGE and Voodoo3 PCI cards to 
      Mr. Frank Mariak on 07 Aug 2000. Another computer hardware 
      set was delivered to VFD team last week.

3. Vision Factory Development shall develop support for graphic cards operating in the MEDIATOR PCI busboard. Support for S3 ViRGE and Voodoo3 chipsets was agreed upon as the minimum.

      S3 Virge:
      ELBOX Computer received a test version of an S3 ViRGE card 
      driver (enabling starting Workbench in the S3 ViRGE PCI card) 
      from Vision Factory Development on 18 July 2000; 
      S3 ViRGE drivers are currently available.

      Voodoo3: 
      ELBOX Computer received a test version of Voodoo3 drivers 
      for MEDIATOR PCI for presentation purposes (allowing for 
      operation with Workbench) on 29 Sep 2000.

4. ELBOX Computer, after starting the production of the MEDIATOR PCI busboard shall deliver a bundled free package of CyberGraphX v.3 along with drivers for all the currently supported PCI graphic cards.

      ELBOX Computer is now selling the MEDIATOR PCI busboard 
      through the network of its distributors world-wide. 
      CGX3 is bundled with MEDIATOR PCI. This is an excellent 
      advertising move for the commercial CGX4.

Before the agreement
 
ELBOX offered Mr. Frank Mariak that our programmers would prepare drivers for various graphic chipsets, including Voodoo3 PCI, for working with CyberGraphX. Such drivers would then be transferred in the form of source codes written in assembler for Mr. Frank Mariak's authorisation and distribution. We expected only making available some developer's information related to CGX in return. 

   However, Mr. Mariak decided he would himself write the drivers 
   if we supported him with hardware and documentation. Which we did.

False information
 
in the announcement on selling rights to Voodoo drivers included  alleged expected technical problems related to implementation of 3D drivers with our MEDIATOR PCI busboard. 

   Please note that none such problems exist. On our request, 
   Mr. Mariak was to report to us any possible problems related 
   to his development work… and he remained silent all the time.

 

Using Developer's Documentation

for MEDIATOR PCI and computer hardware (including Voodoo3 PCI card) provided free of charge by ELBOX Computer as requested by Mr. Frank Mariak for writing Voodoo3 drivers, as it turned out, for another company is the clearest form of breaching rules of social life and business honesty and integrity.

New business vision
 
On 13 Oct 2000, Mr. Frank Mariak signed an agreement on selling the Voodoo3 drivers for benefit of another company. In contacts with our company, Mr. Frank Mariak never mentioned any intention of this kind on his part, never suggested such a possibility and never asked for or negotiated any payment for his software writing work. He never contacted us in this issue. 

Then, out of the blue, he surprised us and all Amiga users with making a "simple BUSINESS DECISION" (original quotation from Mr. Mariak's response to our inquiry for explanation of the VFD & DCE's announcement) on making an alliance with a third party for selling the above rights. 

We hope this explanation clarifies the situation. 

Please make sure that we refrain from any comments of ethical or whatever nature. The above are simple facts to make you all aware of the plot behind the scenes.

ELBOX MOVES FORWARD
 
In the view of the circumstances described above, ELBOX Computer hereby announces that our programmers shall prepare software for supporting Voodoo3 cards in the MEDIATOR PCI busboards. 
These drivers will be included in the software package for the MEDIATOR PCI busboard. We expect completing work on the first version of this software within two weeks.


Mariusz Siaczyklow
ELBOX COMPUTER, Press Department
contact:

Addendum
Please find the enclosed only and last Voodoo3 driver in Alfa version for MEDIATOR written by Mr. Frank Mariak. This driver  was prepared solely for presentation purposes and may only be  used in this way. 
This driver was never bundled with MEDIATORs, contrary to the  information in the DCE & VFD's announcement. 
Please consult the enclosed text file disclaimers by Mr. Mariak in this respect.


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