United Software Industries Inc has developed software that it claims enables personal computer users to develop, use and run electronic mail systems. The Canoga Park, California company points out that until its software arrived on the scene, personal computers could be used only as as terminals linked to a remote bulletin board, commercial electronic mail service or subscription-based information exchanges; users today rent time on these systems and, in addition, must pay long-distance phone charges or fees to a commercial network of special local telephone numbers that route calls to the central computer. Its People-Net offering is designed for systems capable of running under Unix or Xenix, such as IBM ATs, PS/2s and compatibles, and mainframe and minicomputers. That version will be available shortly and an MS-DOS version will be added by the middle of the year. People-Net enables users to create identical parallel conversations that reside at additional People-Net-equipped sites; the origin of a conversation is transparent to the user, and a conversation can be underway between two or more sites simultaneously. System requirements and configurations for People-Net vary according to the number of users, which determines the number of serial ports, modems and hard-wired network connections needed. A minimum of 5Mb hard disk is required. People-Net costs $550 for non-commercial small-system object code licences for individual professional users; commercial small-system object code licences are $2,250; mainframe, minicomputer and large-system licences, including source code, cost $4,500.