Amiga Forever by Cloanto
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Remembering our Friends

The Amiga gave us some exceptional... "amigos". This page is a small and humble tribute to the friends who are no longer with us, but who will be remembered forever in our hearts and memories.

Kara N. Blohm (1944-2004)

We first learned to appreciate Kara and her artwork as Amiga users in the 1980s. This matured into a friendship and a tight cooperation which allowed us to share many of the ups and downs of the Amiga days, and a bit more than that.

The Kara Collection, featuring Kara's complete artwork on a CD, was first published by Cloanto in 1996. Parts are also included in other publications, such as the Personal Suite, Personal Paint, and Amiga Forever. In 2000, a selection of The Kara Collection, inclusive of a new AnimFont, was released for free download on Aminet.

Kara had been suffering from the consequences of an enlarged heart, and underwent a Batista procedure (experimental open-heart surgery) in March 1997, after which she felt much better. As she said in 2002, "I am still making my own record and living as much as I can." She passed away from a massive heart attack in Venice, California, on the morning of Friday, December 10th, 2004.

A memorial service was held on Saturday, January 15, 2005 at 2:00 p.m. at Gates Kingsley Gates, Smith Salsbury, located at 4220 South Sepulveda Boulevard in Culver City, CA 90230, (310)-837-7121.

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Raffaele Cocchi (1942-2004)

"Raffaele called me one day in 1988, when we were both working on speech synthesis software on the Amiga," remembers Cloanto's Mike. "This call, which evolved into a friendship which lasted for almost 20 years, is a great example for me of the many friendships that were born with and around the Amiga and its talented and diverse community."

In the 1980s, the Amiga made it affordable to widely use speech synthesis in innovative fields such as literature research (e.g. Raffaele and Vanio's Letteratura Amica project) and text processing for the blind and the physically challenged (e.g. Cloanto's HTX). Unfortunately it was not easy as to deploy such systems in an educational environment where other platforms were becoming increasingly more popular than the Amiga. As Amiga emulation became more and more refined, Raffaele started working on a port of Letteratura Amiga within Amiga Forever, for use by his students.

Raffaele died unexpectedly in Bologna, Italy, on Wednesday, March 24, 2004.

Jay G. Miner (1932-1994)

Oscar vividly remembers the chats with Jay on the "Mission BBS", for which he had written the SkyPix software to display animated graphics; some of the ideas behind that software then found their way into Personal Fonts Maker and Personal Paint. And so does Mike, who had the privilege of meeting Jay at early Amiga events, and interviewing him for what would become the Amiga Forever project.

Without Jay Miner, "Father of the Amiga", the dreams and friends we all shared would not have been possible.

Jay died of complications related to kidney failure on June 20, 1994, in a Mountain View, California, hospital.

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From the Photo Album

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Kara (right) and Mike at Dinah's in Los Angeles, CA, on January 21, 2001

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Raffaele (right) and Vanio at Fiera internazionale della traduzione in Forlì, Italy, on December 3, 1992

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Jay during the Amiga Forever interview in Paris, France, on February 9, 1990