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Shockwave.com announces online entertainment center

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) -- Software maker Macromedia Inc. has formed a new unit to promote its Shockwave technology on a Web site it hopes will become an entertainment hub on the Internet.

The unit, called shockwave.com, will operate a Web site by the same name.Macromedia's Shockwave and Flash software are used to enhance Internet sites by adding animation and sound elements to existing graphics. The site will guide users to games, puzzles and animation using the technology, the company said Monday.

On the Web site, users will be able to download two pieces of software that play Shockwave files. The free Shockwave Remote allows Internet users to search out and play back music, comics and games, and then save up to five pieces of content for use at anytime -- even when their computers are not connected to the Internet.

Those who want to save more than five titles can upgrade to Shockmachine, which will be sold for $19.95 and offer unlimited save capacity and exclusive content. The software also organizes stored titles in customized categories.

The San Francisco-based Macromedia has lined up several partners for shockwave.com, including Comedy Central, Hasbro Inc. Interactive, Marvel Enterprises Inc., News Corp.'s Fox Interactive and Sega of America.

Macromedia said the new Web site and the two Shockwave players will launch early this summer.