Internet

The Internet is a waste of time

I really wanted to put this one under Humor.The Times of India has a very funny story by John O\'Farrell, who seems to honestly believe the internet is a waste of time.

\"The usefulness of the Internet has been hyped out of all proportion. All it does is make information more easily available. The downside of this is that in doing so it creates an enormous amount of new material, most of which is just information for its own sake. Clearly, there are some specialist occupations for whom the Internet is a vital resource, but since I am not a white supremacist with an interest in hardcore pornography, I find that most of the sites are not really for me.\"

He does go on to defend Libraries....

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The web helps magazine industry

Businessweek.com has a suprising story on the growth of magazine readers thanks to the web. It seems the web is helping the magazine business, not hurting it.

\"The Internet, rather than stealing readers from the printed page, may turn out to be the best thing to happen to magazines since the printing press\"

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Limiting the net

Microsoft is slowing turning into a mutual fund, buying large stakes in companies that are in the internet industry. The newest buy is RealNames, a company that allows people to use keywords, instead of URLs to navigate the web. CNet has the story Here.

Nico Popp said the company wants \"to eliminate the URL from the user experience.\"

Does this sound like too much control?

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The Spire Project pioneers better search assistance

David Novak writes \"

FYI: The Spire Project pioneers better search
assistance.

Breaking with a number of conventions, The Spire Project
mixes editorial advice on search techniques and search
strategy with the convenience of an ALL-IN-ONE search page.
It builds a cohesive story approach to finding information.

Of interest here is a fine analysis of searching the web
showing the various search techniques (Boolean, truncation,
proximity & field searching).
The Spire Project is a collection of
websites/mirrors/faqs/and free-shareware presenting search
assistance on topics like patents, country profiles,
statistics, and the web.

http://spireproje
ct.com/webpage.htm

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Researchers work to eradicate broken hyperlinks

News.com is reporting Here that researchers are working on a way to erradicate the dreaded 404 messages.

Researchers at the University of California at Berkeley say they have come a step closer to solving a frustrating problem familiar to most Web surfers--the broken hyperlink.

In a recent academic paper, computer scientists Thomas A. Phelps and Robert Wilensky outlined a way to create links among Web pages that will work even if documents are moved elsewhere. While researchers have tried to tackle the issue before, Internet search experts said the paper describes a potentially elegant solution to a widespread and long-recognized puzzle.

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Why the Open Directory Is not Open

Andrew Goodman writes \"Close scrutiny of the Open Directory Project (www.dmoz.org) is uncovering a series of series flaws in this and other volunteer-edited directories.
http://www.traffick.com/story.asp?StoryID=59
\"

\"Open Directory Category Editors are volunteers -- indeed, an army or self-governing republic of net-citizens -- but their numbers are, nonetheless, finite. It\'s not open to all comers. A recent scathing commentary by one disgruntled ex-editor, Gary Mosher, has described the army of editors as \"as a horrible mix of corrupt generals and untrained privates,\" since \"there are only two kinds of \'guide\' volunteer: The passionate, often self-interested, \'subject spammer\' and the virtuously motivated, but web-ignorant, \'want-to-belonger\'.\"

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DoubleClick backs off

Yahoo\'s News reports that we are safe from prying eyes for now.

Bowing to intense pressure from government authorities, investors and privacy advocates, Web advertising firm DoubleClick on Thursday backed off plans to amass a giant online database of people\'s names and Internet habits.`This is a great first step forward for Internet privacy,\'\' said Ari Schwartz of the Center for Democracy and Technology, a Washington-based group that tracks civil liberties on the Internet.

``Companies will better recognize they have to take privacy into account before building technologies or
business practices on the Internet,\'\' he said.

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What are the search engines up to?

Someone recommended this story at onlineinc, quick updates on the major search engines, read it Here.

All the major search engines are covered. AltaVista, Ask Jeeves, Dogpile and the rest of the major search engines have new developments.

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Study Finds Heavy Internet Users Are Isolated

The Washington Post has a not so suprising story about how the internet is changing our lives.

The Internet is creating a class of people who spend more hours at the office, work still more hours from home, and are so solitary they can hardly be bothered to call Mom on her birthday.

Those are some of the conclusions of a major new study of Internet users conducted by Stanford University\'s Institute for the Quantitative Study of Society. But even before its official unveiling here today, the survey of 4,113 people was receiving extensive criticism, guaranteeing another round of debate over the effect of this new technology.

\"We\'re moving from a world in which you know all your neighbors, see all your friends, interact with lots of different people every day, to a functional world, where interaction takes place at a distance,\" said Norman Nie, a Stanford professor of political science and director of the institute. \"Can you get a hug, a warm voice, over the Internet?\"

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All knowing search tool

Story from PCWorld on a new program called kenjin. You can download it HERE.

Unveiled earlier this week at the Demo 2000 conference in Palm
Springs, California, the free downloadable program is a
\"behind-the-scenes\" search engine. It reads and analyzes the text
on your screen, picks out the major themes, and then combs the
Internet for links related to those subjects.

Kenjin works with almost any sort of document, whether you\'re
working in a word processor or writing an e-mail message.
There\'s no need to activate your browser, no need to type in
cumbersome Web addresses and keywords. You just need to be
connected to the Internet.

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