» Archive for December, 1998

Book Review: Calendar – Humanity’s Epic Struggle to Determine a True and Accurate Year

Thursday, December 31st, 1998 by Jonathan Spira

Humanity’s Epic Struggle to Determine a True and Accurate Year
David Ewing Duncan
Avon Books

A brief history of the world, as viewed through the one information container that has become a universal yardstick for measuring progress, is presented by David Ewing Duncan, who takes the reader from the first recorded date to the present.  Duncan, with the powerful drama of cultures from Vedic India and Cleopatra’s Egypt to a cast of characters which
includes Julius Caesar and Omar Khayyam , demonstrates how, as the various peoples of the world have struggled to record time, they have by and large gotten it wrong, at the same time causing both war and strategic alliances throughout the world.

You can order this book on line right now at Amazon.com.

Jonathan B. Spira is CEO and Chief Analyst at Basex.

1998 Top Ten

Thursday, December 31st, 1998 by Ellen Pearlman

As 1998 draws to a close, we present ten of the year’s most significant events, as covered by Basex.
1.)  Litigation: Microsoft and the Department of Justice. Microsoft and Sun. Microsoft and 20 states plus the District of Columbia. You get the picture.

2.)  The Legislation of the Internet: The Digital Millennium Copyright Act and the Child Online Protection Act (CDA II). The ACLU had a busy year, and the Recording Industry Association of America tried unsuccessfully (so far) to repress the use of MP3.

3.)  Internet stocks (and sales) begin to fly: Take amazon.com and eBay for example. Tech Investors sent the NASDAQ on many wild rides.

4.)  Wireless communication expands: Iridium telephones arrived. So did a wireless Palm Pilot, WinStar point-to-multipoint wireless communication technology, and, most recently, FCC-approved wireless communication for airplanes.

5.)  Apple regains a viable market: Anyone seen the sales figures for the iMac?

6.)  The Year 2000 computer glitch is suddenly a reality: Companies began to scramble for programmers with the ability to debug their systems – recruiters are lining up outside the COBOL programmer’s retirement home near you.

7.)  The Starr Reports go online: The same administration that passed the CDA II also put the Starr Reports on the Internet.

8.)  Portal madness: Everyone wants to be a portal site. Everyone then claims to be a portal site. What actually is a portal site, anyway?

9.)  Mergers galore: The most compelling – America Online and Netscape, with the added bonus of AOL’s strategic alliance with Sun Microsystems.

10.)  The U.S. versus the European Union: Whose privacy standards should govern the Internet? What level of encryption is permissible for international e-mail traffic? Decisions are expected next year.

Ellen Pearlman is a senior analyst at Basex.  Elisabeth Ward, editorial director at Basex, assisted in compiling this list.