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  1. Technology
November 7, 1988


By CBR Staff Writer

Lowell, Massachusetts-based Wang Laboratories Inc is set to launch a new computerised office system that aims to ease the distribution of information within busy commercial environments. The Freestyle personal computing system, as reported briefly (CI No 1,049), consists of a software package, developed by the system’s mastermind Steve Levine at Wang Laboratories, along with an electronic pencil and writing tablet; optional extras include a voice module, scanner, laser printer and Group III-compatible facsimile board. Using the electronic pencil and tablet, Freestyle allows MS-DOS micro users to transmit handwritten adjustments and comments to on-screen information to others in the network; these can be synchronised with voice messages, transmitted over the optional phone-like voice module. Documents with written or typed notes can also be sent from a Freestyle system to a fax machine, or another Freestyle system that has the Freestyle Fax option installed, while incoming faxes can be viewed directly on-screen. Freestyle’s components – all licensed – run on MS-DOS micros, including the Wang PC200/300 series, with 512Kb or 640Kb of RAM and a hard disk; they use Wang’s VS networking product. Wang is aiming Freestyle – available in the US in January, 1989, and in the UK in March – at busy executives in the financial and professional services; the basic kit will be priced at UKP1,500, but a complete system with computer and phone attachment will be nearer UKP10,000.

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