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Version 3.04 (# 28)       Circulating 40,000 Copies       June 1995
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28-1a.gif A Zip Winner

Iomega (www.iomega.com), maker of the Bernoulli removable drive, has a winner with its new Zip Drive. This drive packs 100 MB on each 3.5-inch cartridge, at a street price of $200. Blank removable cartridges retail for $20 each. The 3.5 inch cartridges are slightly thicker than a floppy disk.

The external Zip drive is about the size of a modem. The SCSI version of the drive is compatible with PCs running DOS/Windows, and Macintosh System 7+. Access time is 29 ms, adequate for launching and running most software applications. Its real strength is in archiving large files and backing up your hard drive. The Zip drive may dominate the removable-media market on price alone. Its closest competitor is a Syquest 88 MB ($350, with cartridges about $52).


Murdoch's Thoughts

Rupert Murdoch, whose newspaper, television, and film empire spans four continents, recently traveled to Finland to "beg for paper" amid a global newsprint shortage. After returning empty-handed, he vowed that all the newspapers in his News Corporation stable would soon be published electronically. "Whether people will pay for them, whether people will use them, we don't know".

There are many possible uses of the electronic highway, Murdoch said. "No one yet has found a way to make a profit on it - I believe one day somebody will. The trick is to get into the business without losing too much money for a few years". Murdoch's power, acquisitiveness, and deep pockets have often prompted critics to lament about his possible media stranglehold. Murdoch believes the rise of electronic media could shatter current media monoliths.

"The great thing that's happening - and the electronic revolution is bringing it about to some extent - is to open up the possibility of newspapers being started on very little capital, he said. No one's going to be able to have any monopolies - the bigger you are, the more vulnerable you'll be to attack from someone around the corner with a better idea. And they won't need a lot of money to start against you".

The List

Having trouble finding an Internet Service Provider? Check out the list of providers at http://thelist.com. Besides searching for ISPs, this site lets you rate your provider (from 0 to 10) or add providers to the list.


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DCN's MindWire

Durand Communications Network (www.durand.com) has released MindWire, their new Internet Client/Server software package. MindWire is a native Windows application for creating a multimedia online service accessible by dialup modem, across a network, or through the Internet.

The MindWire Server software runs on Windows 3.1, Windows for Workgroups, Windows NT, or a Windows NT Server. MindWire includes a system of keys that ease billing for an online service. A complete audit trail records all user transactions on the server with reports to monitor system activity. MindWire options include a toolkit for developing interactive Windows applications with Visual Basic, Visual C++, and other language environments. The MindWire Client software (and a single-user version of the Server) is free. A 4-user version of the MindWire Server is $295 for 4 nodes, $495 for 8 nodes, and $295 for each additional 8-node license.


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Modem Voice Game Chips

Phylon's new PlayLink chipsets and internal modem boards are designed to enhance remote PC game play and interaction over normal telephone lines. The PlayLink system works with existing titles such as DOOM 2, Heretic, Falcon 3.0, Descent, Indycar, Nascar, and other two-player mode games. A sound card is required to hear game music and sound effects - mixed with the remote player's voice.

Phylon's chipset includes features such as voice and realtime game data communications, talk-first mode for game setup, games synchronization, and call waiting. The first version of the PlayLink PC internal card includes 14.4 kbps fax/ modem capability and headset, and is software upgradable by visiting their website: (www.phylon.com).

The PlayLink PC product is available from Phylon, and has an introductory price of $150 each or $200 for two, plus sales tax and shipping. Phylon's website offers lets players find opponents from around the globe, obtain listings of remote games, hot game tips, announcements of new game releases, answers to hardware/software questions, and PlayLink software upgrades as they are released.


Photoshop Weekend

The University of California Santa Cruz (www.ucsc.edu) will host a hands-on introduction to Photoshop 3.0 for Macintosh in a weekend workshop to be held July 15 and 16 in Santa Cruz. Participants earning the course certificate will learn the skills necessary to work as entry-level or freelance production artists. Among UCSC's summer quarter-long courses are Multimedia, Fundamentals of Newsletter Design, Desktop Publishing, QuarkXPress, and courses on Adobe's Photoshop, Premiere, and Illustrator. Most courses are held at UCSC's Santa Clara facility at 3120 De La Cruz Blvd.

Chip Theft Epidemic

A crime wave is sweeping the West Coast. Estimates of reported robberies of computer and chip resellers, as well as package delivery vans exceed one per day. These invasion-style attacks are becoming brutal.

Several stores in the Bay Area have been robbed over the last year, with no end in sight. The problem extends past the Bay Area - on May 16 1996, armed robbers stole an estimated $5 million of chips from Centron Electronics in Irvine, CA. Law enforcement has been unable to make a dent in this crime wave, partially because stolen chips are more valuable than gold and are easy to fence through established gray-market channels. Intel has begun marking its larger chips with serial numbers.

One way resellers can reduce the incentive to steal is to put controls on parts purchases, and keep an accurate paper audit trail to the original source of the parts. With the razor-thin margins in the electronics industry, the extra paperwork has some resellers worried. If they had to prove to the customer that the parts purchased were from the wholesaler or manufacturer, the extra expense and paperwork might cause the customer to bypass the reseller. To combat this problem (and to avoid the potential risk of being arrested) individuals should avoid buying parts that might be "hot".


Apple Overseas

Recently it was disclosed that Apple sells more than fifty percent of its products outside the United States. "To do business in large foreign markets", said Apple USA President James Buckley, "American corporations have to set up homespun operations there. This year we decided to invest in five emerging markets around the world - China, India, South Korea, Mexico, and Brazil - because the growth in the business we're in will hit a wall in a couple of years".

Buckley used Brazil as his example. "Of the nearly 1 million personal computers sold annually in Brazil, only 3 percent are Apple Macintoshes. But through a series of actions, Apple expects to increase its sales in Brazil by an average of 80 percent a year and attain a 10 percent market share in 1998. This year Apple established a Brazilian subsidiary, opened a sales office, developed a distribution channel, approved advertising programs and is working on deals with software developers, manufacturers, warehousers, and third-party customer support providers in Brazil."

"It doesn't mean we're not an American company anymore. But we've opened operations in Shanghai to help us operate locally in China and we're doing software development in India".


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Microprocessor Sales

The worldwide sales (prices) of 16 and 32-bit microprocessors had doubled in the last two years, and has reached almost $11 billion, according to a report from the Semiconductor Industry Association (www.semichips.org).


The Year 2000

For many computer and software systems, the year 2000 will bring a host of expensive problems related to software programs that record the year using only the last two digits. Hosting a continually updated clock showing the time remaining until the year 2000, The Year 2000 Information Center (www.year2000.com) allows Internet users to get the latest facts and information on the year 2000 computer crisis, and provides a forum for the discussion of possible solutions.




28-8b.gif Managing Internet Information Services, (O'Reilly & Associates, [www.ora.com] $29.95, ISBN 1-56592-062-7) by Cricket Liu, Jerry Peek, Russ Jones, Bryan Buus, and Adrian Nye, is a must-have for those new to setting up publicly accessible Internet sites. About half the book (630 pages) is devoted to Gopher and the WWW, with the balance covering finger, telnet, email, FTP, and WAIS services, with a few pages devoted to discussions of security and intellectual property.

Managing Internet Information Services is intended for readers already possessing some Unix literacy. It is especially helpful for those responsible for installing and configuring server software, and for the data librarian who maintains information resources. For those responsible for providing information over the Internet on a new Unix server, this book is a great place to start. Even if you're working with another OS, this is a lot of book for $29.95, and is worth a look.


Lowell Darling's Art Page

(Sara Peyton) Sonoma County artist Lowell Darling, who once battled Jerry Brown in the hope of becoming the Democrats' choice for gubernatorial candidate in 1978 - capturing 67,000 votes - is now weaving his zany art into a world wide forum, the Internet. Once known as the Will Rogers of the art world - a mix of artist, prankster, and political satirist - Darling, along with his partner, computer wizard Jim Newman, have unleashed the first web project for the Whitney Museum of American Art.

This example of web art is a collage of highlights from the Hollywood Archaeology, including discarded films clips picked up off the streets of Hollywood during the 1970's, stories of wrestler/film heavy Mike Mazurki and his Cauliflower Alley pals, Hank Aaron and the "Fat Bat", Marilyn, Mae West, and much more. Rather than braving the streets of NYC, you can get to this unusual Whitney exhibit by webbing to www.echonyc.com/~hwdarch.

Web Publishing

The Coriolis Group's (www.coriolis.com) new all-in-one Web Surfing kit (ISBN: 1-883577-41-1) is a complete set of tools for Web publishers. For $79.95, you get several new-release books (totalling 1,200 pages) and a CD-ROM with some of the freshest information and best Internet publishing tools. In addition to a wide array of HTML editors, Word Processing (and PageMaker!) HTML conversion tools, the kit includes an array of popular readers, converters, browsers, templates, and multimedia publishing tools - including Coriolis's own unique utilities.

The Rider FAQ

For those interested in the new rider-type home exercise machines (such as the HealthRider, the expensive machine with a loyal following in closets and garage sales, Ira Chayut's FAQ is an invaluable guide. Ira's Rider FAQ is posted about once a month to the misc.fitness Usenet group.

Internet Literacy Consultants

The ILC (www.matisse.net) is an organization that sponsors seminars and helps individuals and businesses use networked communications to accomplish goals. Most ILC seminars are held at the Climate Theater, 252 9th Street (between Folsom and Howard Streets) in San Francisco. Their two-part lecture/demonstration features a live Internet connection. The introductory level workshop shows how to use the graphic interface to the Internet. Questions and information inquiries are welcome. The classes are designed for those planning to have a SLIP/PPP account:

Page 2 and 3 had full-page ads for WCO's Internet services.

Page 4, 5, 6, and 7 had full-page ads for Laitron Computers.

Pages 8 and 9 had ads for the Silicon Matchmaker (www.silicon.email.net), Atlantis (www.atlantis-bbs.com), Nolo Press (www.nolo.com), Atlas (www.gilroy.com), and DSP Internet (www.dsp.net).



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Editor's Views

The Internet and World Wide Web is growing exponentially - but not nearly as fast as the editorial coverage of it. At the rate every printed publication is covering the Web, it's likely you'll soon find web sites listed on cereal boxes.

Already, there are more Web sites than BBSs. As more and more publications maintain massive lists and print web sites, it will soon become a situation similar to - and as useful as - listing selected names and numbers from the white pages of the phone book. WCO will maintain a Web list, but we won't become a me-too, copy-cat publication.

Leadership and Labor

The true need for human labor is exponentially spiraling downward. The first reduction of required labor was the move from the agricultural to the industrial age. The problem was partially "solved" when the governments of the world slowly created complex infrastructures of paper and laws ultimately requiring millions of administration workers, along with many accountants, tax preparers, and lawyers. The move from the industrial age to the information age is displacing workers at an incredible rate. How will our leaders respond? So far, the answer we hear is retraining, but for what? The handwriting is on the wall, mass employment is no longer required.

What's the answer? Reduce the work-week to 30 hours without reducing pay, and eliminate payroll taxes. Is it this easy? Of course not, but then again, I'm only the editor of this magazine. (As of January 12, 1998, it looks like my predictions are not yet correct, but I still believe that long-term, these concepts have merit.)

We need a more creative solution than to increase the administration infrastructure, and tax the remaining workers and businesses to support it. Maybe we need new leaders.





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