October 5 – 11, 1997

from the Up-To-Date dept

Just a little late, but a lot less polished…

                                The not always serious, 
                                not always weekly update
                                on the Hi-Tech Industry
                                October 5th - October 11th
                Sponsored by the Technology Management Club of 
                Cornell's Johnson Graduate School of Management.
                Just a little late, but a lot less polished...

Say that again... (too many good ones this week to choose just one)
"By 2005, at least 1 billion people will be on the Internet.  If 40 million
Frenchmen aren't there, that's their problem."
-Ira Magaziner, the Clinton Administration's senior advisor on Internet
policy at a hi-tech forum in Amsterdam

"What would I do? I'd shut [Apple] down and give the money back to the
- Michael Dell, before a crowd of several thousand IT executives when asked
what he would do if he were running Apple.

"You tell Microsoft what they should do. We want this to be tried in the
court of public opinion. I can't just count on the courts. The best way to
deliver this message to them is to buy Navigator."
- Scott McNealy, acting as a Netscape spokesperson, News.com, 7 October 1997

"What we do is interest people. The interest part of it seems to have
escaped Microsoft."
- John Mecklin, editor of San Francisco Weekly, on Microsoft's new San
Francisco version of Sidewalk

"If NT's the solution, you don't understand the problem."
- seen in a .sig file

Our Litigious Society...
Sun suing Microsoft in a wonderful publicity stunt (yeah, sure, Scott...
whatever you say)... GTE looking paranoid as they file suits against 5 Baby
Bells, Netscape, and Yahoo, in what strikes me as a lot of whining about
how they missed the boat...

Space redux
Poor astronaut Michael Foale: even the weather gave him problems as he had
to land a day late... Thank goodness my Mir problems clock is back online
as they had problems unlocking a supply vessel this week... the Indian
satellite discussed in lasts week's issue has been "turned off"... 

Stupid Windows Statistics...
100M 32bit Windows have been shipped...4M Windows developers generate $100M
in revenue...100,000 Windows NT Servers are being sold per month...1M
Windows NT Servers sold in the last 12 months...8,232 Windows NT
Applications...Since its introduction Windows 95 has sold an average of 4M
copies/month...Windows NT has sold 7M copies...Shipments of Windows NT have
tripled since Windows NT 4.0...100,000 Applications run on Windows...85% of
all clients on Internet are Windows... Code Base for Windows NT: NT 3.1 -
6M lines of code, NT 4.0 - 16.5M lines of code, NT 5.0 Beta 1 - 27M lines
of code...A New Build of NT 5.0 is done very day

Berating the obvious: (they call this news???)
Windows 9x and NT to combine into One Platform Under Bill... Microsoft,
looking for a new market to crush, has chosen (this week) to go after
search engines with its Yukon search engine... Bank of America to test Visa
smart cards... Motorola on copper chip technology: "Oh yeah, we can do that
too..."... UUNET says flat pricing will go away... Doing its best to shed
any shred of originality, this week AOL announced it will redesign its site
to look more like television... Sun's new Sparc to run at 600 MHz... CNET
has "less revenue, higher costs"... OnSale needs more money, so it'll sell
more stock... AOL managers lose their bonus... Nearly every analyst finally
realizes that SGI really is in trouble as they announce massive losses.
Turns out their success last quarter was simply due to pushing backlog
through... Compaq to provide Yahoo directly on its machines... Yahoo buys
411... Bug in MacOS 8 can erase your hard drive (Apple is apparently
becoming proactive in destroying users' lives)... Broderbund losing a lot
of money... Microsoft donates: software... Europe (of course) rejects
Clinton encryption plans as being generally "stupid"... Steve Jobs hints
that he will become permanent CEO... Kinkos and the Pentagon chose
Netscape Navigator as their browser of choice... Disney "honestly believes"
people will pay for their internet content while they admit they're not
making a dime yet... Dell doing very well, and expect to stay that way...
The Microsoft Network is for sale (though denied by Microsoft).  Do I hear
WorldCom knocking on Bill's door?... CBS (finally) decides to open up a
news website... Cable industry "ignoring" Microsoft...

Intel thinking about buying Alpha? $1.5 billion?? (and of course the
denials, hedging, and general shifting about this one fit under "no
surprises").  But, the other item on this one that surprises me, is that no
one has really commented on what this will do to FTC investigations on
Intel.  My bet is that the investigations would heat up dramatically if
this went through... Intermind gets a patent for push technology (Netscape,
Microsoft, Pointcast, Marimba paying royalties??)... Pointcast finally
ships a 32-bit product... Prodigy found someone to be President and CEO...
AOL has better brand recognition than any RBOC (of course this is mostly
"negative" brand recognition)... Yahoo making money... Gov't continues to
avoid taxing the internet... MCI wants more information from WorldCom?
Take the money and run...

(Mis)Uses of Technology:
United Utilities and Northern Telecom have developed new technology that
let you connect to the internet through *electrical outlets* in homes.
Now, that is just plain cool.  No word on how fast, though... Calling in to
listen to your email messages?  Yup, a new service from JE Software that
gives you one more number to call to check messages... 

Just as studies are showing that IT investment doesn't improve
productivity, the Society for Human Resource Management conducted a very
scientific study where they just asked people if they "thought" the web
improved productivity.  The answers: 48% say "yes".  6% say it had a
negative effect... The Interactive Media Study has found that the number
one online activity is gathering news and info.  Following that was email.
At the bottom of the list: shopping... Only 16% of Fortune 500 companies 
have started a Year 2000 fix... Web based brokerage services will be the 
leading revenue generators on the web at least until 2000, according to 
Cowles/Simba Information... Nearly 40% of PCs sold today are in the 
sub- $1000 range. Mostly these are being bought as second computers, not 
as first PCs by poorer people, as computer makers expected... A group of
government agencies, businesses and academics will study why there's a 
shortage of technology professionals.  Perhaps they'll discover what most 
of us know already: schools don't emphasize technology because they don't 
realize what they're dealing with...

Has anyone else had these recurring dreams this week of putting Scott
McNealy and Bill Gates in a room together and screaming at them to just
stop it already?  Anyway, it seems to me that of the ego trio, Larry
Ellison hasn't been getting enough press lately, so expect him to announce
or do something equally ludicrous sometime soon to get attention turned
back to him... Usenet 2 will not go very far... 

Memes o' the week:
Corporations "pushing" web commerce.  IBM announced this week that they'll
be spending $200 million on a campaign to market web commerce.  Don't they
realize?  If you make a compelling product with a compelling way to sell
it, web commerce will just happen... More "exclusive deals": Preview Travel
and AOL, Auto-by-Tel and Excite, Amazon.com and AltaVista... Web upgrades!
Finally the idea is catching on.  HTTP-NG and XML are all the rage... More
hi-tech companies buying sports arenas.  This week Compaq will have The
Summit in Houston (where the Rockets play) renamed "Compaq Center"...

Too much free time:
Conspiracy generator:  http://www.westword.com/extra/conspire.html

Up To Date is written by Mike Masnick from whatever news he hears from 
whatever sources they happen to come from.  It is not intended for any uses 
other than as one of many possible ways to follow what's going on in the 
hi-tech industry.  I certainly wouldn't rely on it as your only source of
info.  And, of course, my comments may not accurately reflect reality. 

If you would like to subscribe to the email version please send an email to 
mdm8@cornell.edu with "Subscribe Up To Date" in the subject heading. 
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