NTK Bits, 1999-01-08
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From: Peter Langston <psl>
Date: Fri, 8 Jan 99 12:52:29 -0800
Subject: NTK Bits, 1999-01-08
Excerpted-from: NTK now, 1999-01-08
_ _ _____ _ __ <*the* weekly high-tech sarcastic update for the uk>
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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 <<
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 bleem.zip
- 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 http://www.thenet.co.uk/ ... MICROSOFT
Tinky Winky planned... +++ ATH for HAYES... GATES piemen fined
50UKP - catch it again at http://www.ntk.net/gates/creamedgates.mpg
... 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
lindatripp.com ... .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
THEY TRIED TO LAY THEIR "FOUL EGGS" IN OUR MOUTHS>> the NESTLE ROLO
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
those innumerable OPTIONS and a CADBURY'S CARAMEL CHOCOLATE BREAK
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 <<
Need to Know is a useful and interesting UK digest of things that
happened last week or might happen next week. You can read it
on Friday afternoon or print it out then take it home if you have
nothing better to do. It is compiled by NTK from stuff they get sent.
It is registered at the Post Office as
" under more bloody ISO8601 peer pressure from http://www.tbtf.com/ "
NEEED TO KNOW
THEY STOLE OUR REVOLUTION. NOW WE'RE STEALING IT BACK.
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© 1999 Peter Langston