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Samna was a competitor to WordStar and MultiMate in the DOS market for word processors in the 1980s.[1] Based in large part on the look and feel of the Lanier enterprise word processing system's software, Samna was targeted at businesses who had used the Lanier system but were interested in moving to lower-cost PC-based word processing. Samna was developed and published by Samna Corp., an Atlanta, Georgia, U.S. based computer software company that was bought by Lotus Software in November 1990 for $65 million USD.[2]

It had many strengths, but was regularly criticized in reviews over speed issues. Even before GUI environments like Windows, it pioneered treating the empty editing screen as a 'scratchpad', that is, a space that you could cursor into, placing a character or other entry anywhere at will on a printable page. In WordPerfect and Word, and virtually all other editors of that period, territory beyond the last character entered did not exist. When the Hercules graphics card became popular, Samna Word gained a Print Preview mode that was not editable, but showed font and format treatments.

When Windows was released, Samna introduced Ami, a graphics-based word processor, in 1988, which was the first Windows-based word processor on the market[citation needed] (Microsoft Word for Windows did not debut until early 1989). The Windows 3.0 versions were being shipped when Lotus acquired the company, and Ami Pro was folded into Lotus's product line, first becoming Lotus Ami Pro, and then later evolving into Lotus Word Pro. The signature extension of Ami Pro files, .sam, is a legacy of Samna.


  1. ^ "Micropro Fights for Office Market". InfoWorld. 1985-04-15. pp. 20–21. Retrieved 4 February 2015. 
  2. ^ Ami Pro 1.2:Strong ease of use, graphics,By Derek Slater, Page 40, 1 Jul 1991, Computerworld, ...Lotus purchased Ami Pro developer Samna Corp. for $65 million in late 1990...