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1998 Technology Diary



  July 1998  

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Sunday, July 19  
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GUEST LIST
Larry Ellison and Mitchell Kertzman, the chief executives of Oracle Corp. and Sybase Inc., are going to testify before a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing investigating competition in the software business. Full story here.

IE5 BEHAVIORS HOW-TO
In its recently released Internet Explorer 5.0 Developer's Preview, Microsoft introduced dynamic HTML technologies called behaviors. This allows for the separation of script programming from content and design through encapsulation with Cascading Style Sheets. In the Tips and Tools section of 1998 on the Web I have put together a demonstration of the fly-in DHTML behavior. Note this demo will only operate with the IE5 browser, but you can still view the technique with other browsers.

Thought for the day: "Time is nature's way of keeping everything from happening all at once. History simply documents the success of that approach."

 

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Saturday, July 18  
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LOYAL FOLLOWING
Every zealous Apple Macintosh user has his/her reasons for sticking with the Mac, but in one form or the other, it boils down to one word: empowerment. Knowing this, it should be easy to understand why Mac users take every opportunity to pontificate about the platform (besides being really afraid of having a vital limb amputated). An example here.

SURFERS ARE ADVENTUROUS
Last week I asked the readership if you have tried beta software. 60% of respondents have, with only 1/3 of those sorry that they had. Of the 40% among you not so adventurous, half have not tried it simply because they are too chicken. If you only use a computer at work, that's understandable, because it doesn't really belong to you. But for the rest of you out there, what are you waiting for? Live a little. For the record, I am a beta software junkie. First off, it's generally free, and second, it helps me familiarize myself with what to expect so I can report it to you. Now onto the new Question of the Week.

QUESTION OF THE WEEK

Have you ever used an Apple Macintosh computer?

Yes, They're Great!     Yes, But They Suck     Nope, Never Have

      

Thought for the day: "The greatest of all faults is to be conscious of none." - Thomas Carlyle

 

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Friday, July 17  
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MICROSOFT HAD A BETTER DAY IN COURT THAN BILL CLINTON
In the latest wrinkle in the antitrust case against Microsoft, attorneys general from 20 states and the District of Columbia have dropped two claims that relate to the marketing of the software giant's office productivity suite and email software. Click here for details.

CHEAP CRACK
The Electronic Frontier Foundation says its low-budget machine decoded an encrypted message in three days, putting the lie to government claims that it takes too long and costs too much to crack the 56-bit DES. More here.

NOT BAD
Windows 98 has sold more than one million units, Microsoft said Thursday in an announcement moments before releasing quarterly and fiscal-year earnings.
Full story here.

Thought for the day: "The trouble with the rat race is that even if you win, you're still a rat." - Lily Tomlin

 

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Thursday, July 16  
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NEW NETSCAPE PREVIEW AVAILABLE
Sure, Communicator 4.5 looks almost exactly like 4.0. And its subtle enhancements were made chiefly to steer users toward Netscape's Web site content, as the company moves to an ad-driven revenue model. But one of its new features, "Smart Browsing," is really something you will find yourself using every day. And it just might be smart enough to steal some eyeballs away from Yahoo. Download your copy for free at Netscape's web site.

WHAT'S HE UP TO?
Microsoft critic and Senate Judiciary Committee chairman Orrin Hatch says it's time to move beyond browser software in examining the company's business practices, and he has scheduled a new hearing to do just that. Get the full story here.

STILL THE BEST
Slower growth in the computer industry pond may be hammering many technology companies, but it hasn't derailed one of the biggest fish in the water. In results released after market close Thursday, Microsoft posted earnings of $1.36 billion, or 50 cents per share, on sales of $4 billion for the three-month period ended June 30. Details here.

Thought for the day: "Realize that if you have time to whine and complain about something then you have the time to do something about it." - Anthony D'Angelo

 

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Wednesday, July 15  
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APPLE IS HOT
Interim CEO Steve Jobs had previously said that Apple predicted a profitable third quarter, but the results far surpassed expectations. Quarterly revenues were $1.4 billion, with 45 percent coming from midrange systems such as Power Macintosh G3 desktops and minitowers, 20 percent from the education market, 18 percent from PowerBooks, and the rest from other items such as servers, displays, and imaging products. Click here for full report. By the way, congratulations to Apple Computer, but they're making one of my predictions look bad.

GITTIN' JINI WID IT
In an interview with Wired magazine, Sun Microsystems visionary Bill Joy gives the first in-depth glimpse of Jini, the Java-based distributed-computing technology that aims to give all computers everywhere the ability to interact. A must read.

SCUMBAG WATCHDOGS
The Federal Trade Commission has released its "Dirty Dozen Spam Scam" list, which shows that most junk email schemes are not very original. Details here.

Thought for the day: "Some people speak from experience; others, from experience, don't speak."

 

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Tuesday, July 14  
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BILL AND AL SAVE THE WORLD
President Clinton today called for accelerated efforts to fix the Year 2000 problem, announcing that he would propose legislation to limit legal liability for companies that share information to fix the massive software bug. Clinton said this "Good Samaritan" law would encourage companies to work together more closely for the common good of all--a rare occurrence in the hypercompetitive high-tech industry. Details here.

BROWSER WAR TIGHTENS UP
A spate of studies has shown Netscape's Navigator browser's market share slipping under pressure from rival Microsoft's Internet Explorer. But whether there will be an all-out winner and who it will be remains to be seen.
Click for summaries.

JAVA STANDARDS
Sun Microsystems says an accounting firm will be hired to verify the fairness of the Java standards process that Sun leads. One Java watchdog says the move doesn't go far enough to satisfy developers. More here.

Thought for the day: "I think I'll learn more from listening. Anything I would say I already know."

 

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Monday, July 13  
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PARTNERS COMPETE
RealNetworks' newest multimedia player was released in beta today, which sets the stage for a streaming showdown as it knocks heads with Microsoft's NetShow.
Click here for details.

CISCO PLEASES FBI
Thirteen technology companies led by Cisco threw their weight behind an alternative to key recovery of scrambled data today, in an effort to unlock the encryption stalemate. The group, which includes Bay Networks, 3Com, Hewlett-Packard, Intel, Microsoft, Sun, Network Associates, and Novell, hopes to appease law enforcement's desire to have access to encrypted data used by criminals, while protecting the privacy of Internet users.
Full story here.

QUESTION OF THE WEEK

Have you ever tried beta software?

Yes     Sorry I Did     No     I'm Too Chicken

      

Thought for the day: "Three can keep a secret if two are dead." - Benjamin Franklin

 

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