Another Chance: The creators of VisiCalc, Dan Bricklin and Bob Frankston, are reunited at Slate Corp., a software developer for pen-based computers. Adding to the all-star lineup is Mitch Kapor, founder of Lotus Development and ON Technology, who's signed on as an investor. Says Bricklin, "We've all done start-ups before, so we can concentrate on the mission, not the ups and downs of being an entrepreneur."

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Acting in a New Role: John Ratzenberger, alias Cliff the mailman on the television comedy "Cheers," has cofounded an environmental start-up that offers a recyclable alternative to polystyrene packing peanuts. Unlike normal peanuts, Eco-Pack stuffers expand to the space allotted, allowing contents to be locked into place. After five months in operation, Ratzenberger says, orders are backlogged six months.

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A Baltic Solution: John Menke might hold Lithuania's best hope for independence. A founding father of employee stock ownership plans in the United States, Menke is helping the Soviets draft new laws permitting employee ownership. Due to visit Lithuania this fall, Menke says Moscow might let "the Baltics go their own way if the state can get its money out of these [Baltic] companies by selling to the employees."

-- Elizabeth Conlin

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