Internet

Canadian MPs Largely Web-Illiterate?

An unofficial experiment by student, programmer, concerned citizen, and Canadian Brendan Wilson suggests that many members of Parliament may not be aware of the importance of the Web:

Overall the experiment demonstrated that the average Canadian cannot contact their MP office [via email] and expect a response in a reasonable length of time, if at all. My point here is not to ridicule the MPs themselves, or their offices, but rather point out the need for a more effective and interactive form of government. Our current form of government was built on the assumption that the general public did not have access to information on current events, or mechanisms to have their opinion communicated efficiently; with modern telecommunications technology, this is no longer the case. . .

What impact will this ignorance have on the forthcoming changes to Canadian copyright law? More from Brendan Wilson\'s site, with thanks to Politech.

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Whatever happend to the Homepage?

Mark writes \"Adam Druckman, Detroit Metro Times: The personal home page was the Web\'s first rallying call for mass social change. \"On the Internet,\" the pundits claimed, \"everyone will be a publisher!\" What happened?
Full Story from
Alternet.org\"

The authors says the old style \"look at me\" homepages have changed, now the big thing is Blogging (e.g.).

\"I miss the personal home pages of yore. Their clunky charm was the prototype for the Web\'s emerging power to communicate. And now that so many of them are gone (or turned into Web logs), I wish somebody had saved the original models, if only for history\'s sake.\"

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Cookies for all of us

The NYTimes has a nice Story on the guy that invented \"cookies\", Lou Montulli. He was employee #9 at Netscape... Just imagine those stock options! He left Netscape in 1998, a millionaire many times over to create epinions.com and they say he has since left that company as well.
It\'s a good story for a little piece of web history, and they also cover all the privacy troubles with cookies.

\"A recent survey by Public Opinion Strategies, a Republican polling organization, found that 67 percent of Americans identify online privacy as a big concern — far more than those who identify fighting crime (55 percent) or building an antimissile shield (22 percent).\"

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The Web Can Shrink a Big World

From ALICE DuBOIS
at the New York Times
- A nice
synopsis in of internet search techniques, tools and
tips. With advice from librarian, Ms. Osofsky, from the
NYPL.

\"People think with the Internet, you push a button and
get an answer,\" says Marcia Osofsky, a librarian at the
New York Public Library telephone reference desk.\"

Full Story

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Searchopolis Closes Up Shop

Searchopolis has gone the way of the dinosaur. On August 18, they closed up shop and posted the following message: \"As of August 18, 2001, Searchopolis.com will no longer offer educational resources, including filtered search. We apologize to those users who have enjoyed Searchopolis\' free services and thank you for your support. While N2H2 makes no recommendation regarding alternative sources for filtered search, a recent major children\'s software magazine gave the following filtered search engines high marks:\" Yahooligans and Ask Jeeves for Kids. no more.

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Google May Go the Way of Pay for Fresher Web

It looks as though Google may decide to start charging site owners for fresh updates. According to the article at ZDNet UK, \"Google appears to be developing a service aimed at extracting revenue from online firms that want a fresher search of their Web sites, following in the footsteps of rivals AltaVista and Inktomi. more...

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Napster Bootleggers

For the Tornado Insider, Marco Frojo writes...

\"In order to escape the tough competition that characterises the online music market, Hifind has decided to concentrate on a small but profitable niche, that of music for the world of cinema, radio and television production. In this way, while Napster continues to suffer amid general indifference, waiting for its new owner, Bertelsmann, to decide how to commercially exploit the company that cost more than a billion dollars, the Hamburg-based company (through its own subsidiary, Initaudio) has presented its new platform Audience, which should make its online debut in October, at the Internationale Funkaustellung (IFA) in Berlin.\" more...

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.info War Heats Up

With three weeks to go before .info is officially launched, folks are beginning to slug it out over real estate in the new domain:

Starting Wednesday, the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) will begin deciding disputes between rival registrants vying for ownership of sites in the dot-info domain.

\"We\'re going to see how well it actually works,\" said Roland LaPlante, Afilias\' chief marketing officer, who estimates that domain name registrants will file between several hundred and several thousand challenges between now and Dec. 26, the deadline for filing. . .

More from Wired News and even more from the Independent.

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The Internet is Messing with Everybody

For The Seattle Times, Jerry Large writes...

\"The Internet is messing with everybody: businesses trying to make money off of it, businesses trying to figure out how not to be killed by it, book publishers, record companies, newspapers, everybody. Rules that have held for decades, or in some instances centuries, don\'t cut it in cyberspace... Because libraries are deeply embedded with a First Amendment sensibility, they have, at their best, fought for the broadest inclusion. But as a practical matter, their job has always included selectivity. They make judgments about which books and other materials they will keep in their limited space. The Internet upset that role. The Internet, while not boundless, is too vast to be policed or cataloged...\" more...

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Indian Street Kids Crack the Internet

An initiative by the Indian government and the World Bank is giving illiterate, homeless kids in Delhi access to computers, with interesting results:

In the slums of Delhi, an experiment has shown how illiterate street children can quickly teach themselves the rudiments of computers and the internet.
The aim of the experiment . . . was to see what role computers might play in educating India\'s illiterate millions. . . [researchers] found that within days the children were able to browse the internet, cut and paste copy, drag and drop items and create folders. One of the things they particularly liked was drawing, discovering how to use the MSpaint programme to create paintings.

More from BBC News. Thanks to Robot Wisdom.

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