Please someone give me some sprites to spark up this page!!!

For the changes to the latest copy of tornado (both internet and fidonet), see here.


Fidonet is a free worldwide network run by microcomputer enthusiasts of all types, not just Acorn ones.

As tornado is being developed by a bloke on fidonet, and due to the more personal nature of fidonet, the latest releases will appear on fidonet before they will on the internet. Also, if you are on fidonet you are much more likely to be able to help me to solve problems I may encounter while writing it (assuming of course that you want to do such a thing!). One such problem solved recently was that with obtaining better than 1cs accurate interrupts from Acorn hardware (thanks James!)

The Acorn fidonet is mainly based in the UK, but there are branches of it in Hong Kong and Australia, and possibly New Zealand too. However, all parts of the fidonet are the same in 'reachability', and while you may not be able to read all of the Acorn fidonet conferences, you will be able to send personal mail (called netmail) to anyone around the world.

I myself have two fidonet addresses, 2:257/501.13 and 2:443/13.68. Fidonet access is usually next to free - I get all my mail for ~39p a week (which is the price of the phone call) and I shift around 500k of mail each week. Not bad eh? And also you don't have the internet IP problem of tortoise-moving data flow - your data goes as fast as your modems do. You don't pay anything to the person or people you get mail off, and if you do you shouldn't. Added to this, there is an AWFUL lot of software on fidonet that is not available on the internet, simply because there are more good programmers on fidonet who churn out more good stuff.

Want to join in? Well, there is a fidonet node (a place you call) in almost every part of the world - including areas where the internet doesn't really exist yet, like in Russia. You will need a fidonet nodelist, which is unfortunately something I can't supply as it's copyrighted, nor do I know where there is a legal copy on the internet.

However, I can supply a list of Acorn BBS's around the world which are BBS's running on Acorn computers. There are of course many more BBS's supporting Acorns, especially in England - however, to find these visit your nearest Acorn BBS and ask the friendly sysop there - he or she will be happy to point you in the right direction.

Anyway, so where do I download tornado from on fidonet?
Well, the official site is The Digital Databank BBS, run by a nice bloke called John Stonier - a few pages by him are here. The number of this place is +44 1707 323531, and the absolutely latest tornado stuff is in Area 111 (the tornado filearea).

There are of course other sites around the UK and Ireland region which will carry up to date copies of tornado, but you'll have to find these through trial & error!

© 1996 Niall Douglas (Last updated: 17th April 1996)