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May 31, 1988


By CBR Staff Writer

Highlights of Japan’s largest computer show, the 66th Business Show held at the Harumi International Exhibition Centre from May 18 to 21 included the latest in laptops, AX-machines and desktop publishing – in Japanese – writes Anita Byrnes. Laptops were on display at all the major manufacturers including Toshiba, NEC, Fujitsu, Hitachi and Seiko Epson Corp. Toshiba had its J-3100 SGT 32-bit model at the front of its stand. Sanyo Electric, Sharp and Mitsubishi Electric lead other companies, including software houses in demonstrating micros to the 16-bit AX standard with Mitsubishi’s MAXY, Sharp’s AX-386 and Sanyo’s 16-bit MBC 17LTJ and 32-bit MBC-18J machines. A number of companies including Toshiba Corp, Japan Digital Laboratory and Fuji Xerox demonstrated Japanese language desktop publishing, a concept that is just beginning to take off here. The theme of the show was Intelligent Offices – More Effective and Comfortable Working Space, and considerable space was devoted to the latest office furniture, in line with the growing realisation that there is too little space in the Japanese office as well as in the Japanese home. Another stand of outstanding activity was the Sony NEWS stand, where Sony itself was demonstrating its new NEWS peripherals such as the NWB-242 image board and the NWA-031 image reader, and a range of software houses were demonstrating applications ported to Sony’s market-leading Unix workstation: these included a Japanese desktop publishing system called Publiss, and terminal emulator software so that NEWS can be used as a host to an NEC 9800 series micro was offered by Japan Information Processing; Japanese UNIFY was on offer from the Osaka distributor AIR; Postscript – the Japanese version, called PDL-J was shown by C Itoh Electronics Ltd; the 3270/6650 kanji graph emulator called Super Emulator, plus various types of cross-compiler software were on offer from Marubeni Hytech; Pygmalion, a C program development environment came from Software Research Associates; Super Brains/C, a hybrid expert system development tool for NEWS was put up by Toyo Information Systems; and Personal Media the Japanese distributor, was showing OPM 83. Canon NAVI has it all Another system which attracted attention was Canon’s new personal computer, the NAVI personal station, which features a touch screen and a telephone built in the side, personal computer functions and word processor, plus a facsimile board, and a thermal printer in the top of the 14.5 wide by 12.8 deep by 13.8 high boxy type unit. The processor is a 10MHz is 80286 with 768Kb of main memory, just one 3.5 720Kb built-in floppy, and a FAX modem running at 9,600bps, plus RS-232 connection. The Apple MacIntosh stand was also popular, with the newly-Japanised SE prominent, and the Macintosh II also on display. Microsoft attracted notice with Microsoft Windows, despite the spat with Apple. Fujitsu was showing a video to explain the concept of the neuro-computer – very necessary for most of us, while Hitachi demonstrated its ES Kernel expert system shell, as well as the Hitachi value-added network, ISDN-compatible equipment and local nets.

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