Fun_People Archive
8 Jan
NTK Bits, 1999-01-08

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From: Peter Langston <psl>
Date: Fri,  8 Jan 99 12:52:29 -0800
To: Fun_People
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Subject: NTK Bits, 1999-01-08

X-Lib-of-Cong-ISSN: 1098-7649
Excerpted-from: NTK now, 1999-01-08

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	 "He [David Talbot, CEO of Salon] wants to go public; to partner
	 with any number of European media companies; to start a Salon UK;
	 a Salon Germany; he wants a Salon television show."
                    - "The Salon Makeover", Wired 7.01
         ...he wants to watch where he leaves that Wired business plan

                                >> HARD NEWS <<
                                 brightly hued

	 Cupertino Kool-Aid - now in five delicious flavours! STEVE JOBS,
	 CEO of the Thousand Year Interim, unveiled staggering new technical
	 innovations at MacWorld, with five new types of plastic iMac cover.
	 "We think", he declared, "the most important question this year is
	 going to be: What is your favorite colo[u]r?". That bodes ill for
	 anyone planning a decent conversation with a Mac user, but then,
	 when did Apple product launchs ever help that? Collectors can now
	 buy iMacs in strawberry, original blueberry, grape, lime and
	 tangerine: all the colours of the Apple logo apart from, you can't
	 help but notice, "lemon yellow". Unconnected research shows the
	 new flashy G3s have beautiful organic lines, diddy little round
	 mice, no SCSI support, no serial port and no floppy drive, but
	 that's okay, because all the Mac peripheral manufacturers will be
	 going bust trying to inventory all these new colours anyway. And
	 what if you liked beige?
                         - innovative new spelling of integer, too...
         - "We don't wake up in the morning dreaming of world domination"
                                                             we live it!

	 Jobs also used the keynote to plug CONNECTIX's new Playstation
	 emulator - an instant solution for the Mac game famine, he said.
	 Connectix themselves were eyeing the exits.  Scared silly of a
	 pre-launch injunction by Sony, the company is now waiting for the
	 cold hand of the multinational "fixers" to fall. Their unofficial
	 defence, should anyone ask before shuriken-ing them to the walls
	 and sending the pieces to Tokyo, is this: Given that Sony make a
	 loss on the PSX itself and only make cash on game sales, they would
	 be fools to sue, wouldn't they? Unless, that is, somebody points
	 out that it's a *lot* easier to chip an emulator than a black box.
	 Hell, out here in insecure platform land, you can't even tie down
	 a pre-release PSX emulator beta for the PC without... I think we've
	 said too much.
                 - Well, it was here, all 110KB of it... called
                          - hold on, let me... you didn't see this, okay?
        - bringing "gamers into contact with the seedier parts of the Net"

                                >> ANTI-NEWS <<
                             berating the obvious

	 NYT pronounces "Linux" like "Cynics" - we wish... LIAM drops ten
	 places in "most popular baby names" poll... INTERNETFCI taking this
	 Euro thing a bit too far at ... MICROSOFT
	 Tinky Winky planned... +++ ATH for HAYES... GATES piemen fined
	 50UKP - catch it again at
	 ... Teens Can Refuse Gang Membership Without Serious Harm, study
	 reveals ... ABC News repeat "funny foreign film re-titling" list:
	 claim Chinese correspondent checked out details... MICROSOFT BACKUP
	 95 proves to be incompatible with Microsoft Backup 98...  Hacker
	 crew announce they've changed their mind about declaring war on
	 China, Iraq...  ZAPATA stocks leap after press release announces
	 intention to become an "Amazon associate"... MS buys MechWarrior,
	 plans to port exo-skeletons to Windows CE...
	 Cooking/Nutrition/Eating_disorders - so that's Bulimia as a
	 category of entertainment?... Linda Tripp welches on paying for ... .NET MAGAZINE plugs Ninfomania - yeah? huh?
	 We'll take you all on, we don't care...

                                >> TRACKING <<
                  making good use of the things that we find

	 "It may not physically *be* a C64, but ethically it's similar"
	 wrote one comp.sys.cbm revisionist about the WEB.IT. We spent
	 forty-five seconds with one, physically if not ethically. Extensive
	 tests show cover of box to be cardboard. Inside, it really does
	 look like a C64 from a reality where the Amiga never happened. It
	 has a C= key.  It's got 16MB of RAM, 16MB ROM, and 2MB of flash
	 ROM, but no hard drive. PCMCIA, pen pad and infrared, but you have
	 to plug it into the telly. The CPU is an AMD variant called an ELAN
	 (not an Enterprise Elan?), which broadly equates to a 100Mhz 486.
	 We have Lotus AmiPro, 1-2-3 Netscape 3.0, Lotus Organiser, IBM
	 PC-DOS (yes!), and Windows 3.1 - oh, and that C64 emulator - in
	 ROM. IBM, Lotus, Phoenix and AMD logos all over the box, but no
	 mention of Microsoft, until you read the fine print that explains
	 that Windows has been licensed by IBM courtesy of a legal loophole
	 that Microsoft can do nothing about. Such pluck! Due in this
	 country "uh, soon", at "uh, 300UKP? 400?". Doomed to fail. But what
	 glorious protracted swansongs these Commodores machines do have.
                                        - anyone got the rights to the PET?

                               >> GEEK MEDIA <<
                      may contain strongly-typed language

	 COOKIES 'N' CARAMEL EGG is at least a step in the right direction,
	 but CADBURY continue senseless experimentation in the form of their
	 sickly oversweet ORANGE EGG - like the standard Creme Egg (or
	 Velvet - see [NTK 1998-01-23], but stuffed with yucky choccy-box
	 filling...  continuing the Alien theme, big tip for '99 is
	 CADBURY'S YOWIE, the eco-friendly incitement to "collect a series
	 of easy-to-assemble replica creatures from within the chocolate
	 tummies of the lovable Yowie characters"... our current chief
	 source of Phenylalanine? HORLICKS MALTISSIMO low-cal instant
	 chocolate drink, available in plain, Mocha or Tiramisu (can't wait
	 for Buddy Holly TV ad: "if you knew/ Tiramisu"), and price-fighting
	 hybird we spotted briefly last year... roving snack spotter LEE
	 MAGUIRE is first to report the truly dramatic sounding CRUNCHIE
	 EXPLOSION (UKP0.38): honeycomb slab replaced with "granules", of
	 which 7 per cent are Space Dust-style "popping candy". Subject
	 describes the experience as "fantastic, like eating a Crunchie
	 while it's still alive"... while we await further confirmation of
	 MATT LOCKE's sighting of the (biscuit-free?) MUNCHIES BAR (UKP1.20)
	 - not to be confused with the shameless counter-intuitive
	 downsizing of MONSTER MUNCH: "From now on, Monster Munch will come
	 in New Bitesize, so there will be more pieces in every bag,
	 ensuring even more monstrous fun every time!"... on the streets
	 (of London at least):  redecoration of tasteful SEATTLE COFFEE
	 HOUSEs as garish STARBUCKS has begun, also slight price hike in
	 the form of discarded "small" size (though apparently they still
	 have it if you ask)... this month's taste abomination: even
	 SMARTIES (UKP0.30) aren't revealing what their new "Mystery Blue
	 Flavour" is supposed to be, because it's part of a competition to
	 win 100 PlayStations. Our current best guess:  blueberry bubblegum.
	 Our backup option: just revolting...

                               >> SMALL PRINT <<

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