17 syllables
    bm 1998



July 1999 Archive


Music industry hysteria over new media continues: ASCAP is demanding that Web publishers pay for the right to link to radio station Web sites. [07.01.99]

The suit is on! [07.01.99]

July 1999: Month of Doom. (Or not -- scroll down to the last few paragraphs.) [07.01.99]

The latest traffic figures indicate the portals have peaked and niche content sites are now on the rise. [07.02.99]

As portals expand into areas previously occupied by traditional desktop applications, they're throwing open standards out the window and offering more and more Windows-only features. [07.02.99]

Amway's employing some downright AOL-like tactics in its efforts to shut down critics and competitors alike. (Also: Would you take Net strategy advice from a lawyer who says "anybody with a browser is in the publishing business"?) [07.06.99]

GUIs are a big reason why 70 percent of America's blind people are unemployed. The answer is more Braille terminals, right? Wrong -- less than 10 percent of today's blind children are being taught to read Braille. [07.06.99]

After spending the last year trying to look as identical as possible, the portals are starting to suspect that maybe it's good to be different after all. [07.06.99]

Even though the biggest advertisers are cutting back on banner spending, Web advertising revenues are still on the rise. [07.07.99]

A baseball fan's perfect plan to skew All-Star voting with a Perl script came undone when he failed to cover his tracks. But the player he was supporting won anyway. [07.07.99]

Hotbot, which once boasted to have indexed over 90 percent of the Web, is now down to a paltry 11 percent. It's not their fault, though; none of the search engines have been able to keep pace with the growth of the Web. [07.07.99]

Researchers have developed a vaccine for Alzheimer's disease (in mice) that may be able to not only stop the progress of the disease, but actually prevent it from starting. [07.07.99]

Network Solutions may be able to put an end to its stalemate with ICANN by just kicking back and waiting for the nonprofit group to run out of money. [07.07.99]

Describing its move in terms of a good old-fashioned arms race, one Web publisher is out to block the banner blockers. [07.08.99]

Logitech's forthcoming force-feedback mouse applies the same technology now used to make joysticks vibrate to simulate textures for e-commerce and, er, other Internet applications. [07.08.99]

Maybe Nostradamus was right after all: First locusts plague Russia, now flooding devastates Las Vegas. [07.09.99]

After struggling through over a year of delays, Castlewood finally shipped its nifty Orb drive -- only to get slapped with a patent infringement lawsuit from the force of evil known as Iomega. [07.09.99]

Broadband service providers are already jockeying for position to sell digital distribution systems to movie studios and television networks. [07.12.99]

The folks at Google are still playing it close to the vest when it comes to talking about their revenue model, but they have let one detail slip: When the site finally does come out of beta, banner ads won't be part of the equation. [07.12.99]

Apple's been experimenting for a while with human-powered battery technology; now Compaq's taken the idea a step farther with a patented system for capturing energy from keystrokes. [07.12.99]

If you often have trouble expressing yourself in your native language, maybe the solution is to make one up of your own. [07.12.99]

Soon, every site will sell everything: As eToys starts selling books, Amazon starts selling toys. [07.13.99]

Here's a helpful hint for staying in good health: Don't eat mouse feces. [07.13.99]

Before his death, Stanely Kubrick approved the use of some digital trickery to obscure details in one scene in "Eyes Wide Shut" for American audiences. But despite Kubrick's imprimatur, critics who have seen both versions are railing against the move; Roger Ebert calls the U.S. version a "travesty" that "results from the failure of the MPAA's rating system". [07.13.99]

Is Sega's Dreamcast system an abysmal failure or a spectacular success? [07.13.99]

Get 'em while you can! After years of being outlawed by NSI, domain names containing dirty words are now up for grabs. [07.13.99]

Cracks in the dam: Broward County, Florida joins Portland, Oregon in forcing cable Internet services to open their networks to competing ISPs. (Yeah, it sounds like a good thing, but open access supporters may be playing right into the hands of AOL.) [07.14.99]

The city of Tampa is shutting down a Webcam operation on the grounds that it violates a zoning ordinance prohibiting "adult entertainment". [07.14.99]

Japanese scientists claim to have discovered the cause of that most mysterious malady, old-people smell. [07.14.99]

The United Nations has proposed a tax on e-mail (one U.S. cent per hundred messages) to subsidize the cost of wiring the Third World. [07.14.99]

Discord is spreading as society tries to sort out when talking on a cell phone in public is acceptable and when it's just plain obnoxious. [07.15.99]

Are banner ad designs entitled to copyright protection? One Web startup says yes; the giant credit card company that copied their design says no. [07.15.99]

Researchers at UCLA have taken the first steps toward building a molecular microprocessor. The next hurdle: making wires small enough to get data in and out. [07.16.99]

As the war between AOL and Microsoft over instant messaging continues to escalate, the open standards bodies seem content to sit back and let proprietary systems win out. [07.26.99]

PC Magazine columnist John Dvorak finds that the design of the iBook threatens his masculinity. [07.26.99]

The phenomenon known as The Blair Witch Project topped its own record-breaking debut last weekend -- and as its distributor plans to take the film nationwide, big-budget studio releases are scurrying for cover. [07.26.99]

The state of Florida is planning to use a killer fungus to destroy marijuana crops -- but scientists warn that releasing the mutant strain could wreak environmental havoc. [07.27.99]

Next on the list of intermediaries soon to be driven out of business by the Net: pimps. [07.27.99]

Call it a metahoax: A message making the rounds of AOL users warns them to beware a Trojan horse that doesn't actually exist. [07.28.99]

Yeah, yeah, we've all heard about the overnight fortunes being made on the Web. Here's a refreshing change of pace: Forbes magazine offers some case studies in how not to succeed in the New Economy. [07.28.99]

Well, we knew they'd have to choose sides eventually: Apple throws its support to AOL in the instant messaging wars. [07.29.99]

Researchers working on the Internet2 project say their super-high-speed backbone is performing as promised, but client-side bottlenecks are preventing users from reaping any real performance gains. [07.29.99]

The handwringing over Y2K may persist long after the new year: Federal computer security experts warn that nefarious Y2K bug-fixers may be quietly installing back doors into sensitive systems so they can gain access after the crisis has passed. [07.29.99]

Tired: Disgruntled postal workers Wired: Disgruntled day traders [07.29.99]

Authorities and counselors are now trying to determine just how many women were raped in the melee at Woodstock '99. [07.30.99]

Everybody loves wacky eBay finds, but not everybody loves hunting them down. Bonnie Burton's eBay Weirdness Mailing List promises to deliver hot tips on the latest strange offerings directly to your inbox every week. [07.30.99]