Spice up your winframe, the natural way!
In a shock second appearance in the same issue of the reviews section
of a well known diskmag, the Swedish crew Nature, are bringing their
own particular brand of excellence to these pages once again.
This time, rather than the slick thrills, of another game such as 'Aces
High', Nature venture into the world of GEM-style utility thingies, and
not too unsuccessfully either.
This comes courtesy of InSTream,a man with a mission to brighten up his
MagiC desktop, as he is seeking to eradicate the boring grey window
frames that have sent many an unsuspecting Atari user to sleep. He has
picked on MagiC 5 and above, and machines (including the MagiC PC
emulator!?) capable of higher resolutions from Truecolour, down to
sixteen colours, which is a reasonably wide range of potentially
interested people. The choice may not be dogmatically limited to MagiC
users either, as I'll explain a bit later on.
What Natframe does, very simply, is to replace the dull grey window
frames of a standard MagiC Desktop, with pre-supplied or user-defined
textures. This enhances the aesthetic experience of a typical MagiC
desktop no end, and if you wait a bit, I'll see if I can come up with a
screengrab to illustrate the point.
Natframe replaces the part of MagiC that draws the window frames.
Installation instructions tell you to locate certain files within the
main part of MagiC,and are simple enough to follow. You then add in the
extra important bits, which are the textures or themes. Nature are good
enough to supply a couple with v1.0b, which are a stony theme, or a
sleekly shaded rhapsody in blue!
You might like to know that there is a frame designer as well, with
step by step instructions how to put a new theme together. It assumes
that you do sort of know what you are doing, when you are making the
texture in the first place.
Natframe isn't restricted to a purist Magxdesk approach either, it is
quite happy with Jinnee (as this author can verify!) and may well work
with NAES 2.0, which may give the Mint boys a way into using Natframe
So what use is it? Well not a lot really, but it does seem to add new
life and freshness to a frankly over-familiar desktop, at the cost of a
smallish download. Natframe is a neat way to put a new coat of paint on
your window frames, and make your computer look that little bit more
individual and special than the rest!
CiH for Alive! magazine - Jan '01