1998 Top Ten

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.

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