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IHUG Refocusing, Reviewing Staff Numbers To Maintain Profit 10 October 2000 Edition
Previous Edition

IHUG has announced that it is reviewing staffing levels in light of the effect that a falling dollar has had on the company's operating costs.

In a statement released today, IHUG says that the cuts could effect around 60 of the company's 350-strong workforce.

IHUG Director Nick Wood says the company will be refocusing on core activities as part of the adjustments.

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Mein Gott!!!!!!!!! - Rob

Great paper - Russell

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The Good The Bad And The Ugly
Yes, we're talking flavours of websites here and I've got to say that The NZ Herald deserves a big pat on the back for putting its site on a major diet and improving the ergonomics.

A page of Herald without the graphics is now just over 30Kbytes -- which compares very favourably with its competition. Over at Stuff.co.nz your modem will have to digest at least twice as much data to display the same amount of news.

And if you want the ultimate in absolutely stupid websites, check out TV3.co.nz which has a Macromedia Flash interface that makes navigation so damned difficult, frustrating and nigh-on impossible that I eventually gave up trying to find a story on the pending IHUG announcement I'd just missed on the 6 pm news.

In an attempt to get around the not-so-Flash interface I cranked up my copy of Opera -- and got this screen. Sigh!

TV3 -- people don't go to your website to be entertained -- they go there to get information. Anything that makes accessing that information harder is bad. Repeat after me -- "the internet is not television, the internet is not television..."

And, while I'm on a beat-up I found it very interesting to compare two very different levels of quality offered by exclusive girls boarding schools.

Comparing the professional, slick, polished and info-rich website that represents Woodford House against the incredibly bad site representing Nga Tawa School For Girls is eye-opening.

Neither of these schools is what you'd call a "cheap" educational option -- but the Nga Tawa website is decidedly second-rate. That graphic on the front page weighs in at 180K bytes but is still very hard to read on my 17" screen -- and almost all of the other graphics show little sign of being optimised for website use.

What's just as bad is that the site is information-poor.

I could find no sign of how much it costs to send a student to Nga Tawa and the Curriculum Guide is presented by way of a very large and scruffy GIF that is extraordinarily difficult to read.

Nga Tawa -- repeat after me -- Our website should mirror our own standards of excellence..."

That Draft Paper On The New Economy
Thanks to all those who have already contributed their comments, critiques and suggestions to the draft paper on fostering a "new economy" I've published on the politics.co.nz website.

Surprisingly enough I've had several emails from citizens of other countries including the USA, England and Australia who have all said that such policies wouldn't go astray in strengthening their own "new economy" activities.

If you've not yet voiced your opinion then please tell me what you think.

Thanks also to those who have sent emails acknowledging that I've contributed some help to their own "new economy" enterprises. I could do with more -- remember that I want to be recognised as someone who's doing his best to stimulate this new economy and not just as a critic of existing policies.

As always, your feedback is welcomed.

Security Alerts
Bug hunter finds another hole in Microsoft IE browser CNet

Microsoft issues new patch for Windows 2000 Telnet security hole (Computerworld)

Windows ME Bugged by Flaw (Wired)

Microsoft adjusts sign-on feature to patch Windows 2000 (CNet)

Word documents susceptible to "Web bug" infestation (CNet)

Trojan horse rears its head on Palms (CNet)

Virus Alerts
UBS warns of new virus (CNN)

Killer Virus Streaming Near You (InternetNews)

'Pokey' virus hits U.S. (CNN)

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The Day's Top News
4 = open in new window
New Zealand

4  Ihug promises statement today
Ihug is promising an official statement today, after a meeting of all its Auckland staff was canned yesterday after TV crews were tipped off...

4  NZ leads region in IT use and productivity
The current stellar performance of the US dollar is just the latest confirmation that knowledge and the effective use of IT have become the principal drivers of growth in the new economy...
NZ Herald

4  Just do it, says IT Investment
A representative of IT Investment Networks is pitching its forum next month as an event "for those who actually want to do something about our knowledge economy."...

4  Online bankingcaptures Kiwis
While usage patterns for major global and local internet sites remain relatively stable, activity at specialised sites indicates key shifts as New Zealanders continue to change the way they use the web...
NZ Herald


4  The Net's $1 Billion Giveaway
An email marketing company in search of publicity offers $1 billion to whoever wins the top prize in its sweepstakes. The odds of anyone claiming $1 billion, though, are very, very, very close to zero...

4  Fear of a Pay-Per-Use World
Legal experts say the Digital Millennium Copyright Act gives too much power to copyright owners. Should they control the use of legally purchased books, movies and songs? A legal analysis...

4  IBM expands Red Hat use for servers
The top distributor of Linux operating system software says the computer maker's new server and mainframe computers will run its popular version of Linux...

4  Dreamcast sales climb on eve of troubled PlayStation 2 launch
Game players and retailers may be frustrated by the expected shortages of Sony's upcoming PlayStation 2 console, but at least one party is benefiting: Sega...


4  Telco caught in phone sex web
An Australian Internet billing company which is relisting on the ASX has been caught up in a scandal over misdirected telephone calls and sex site subscriptions currently being investigated by US regulators...

4  Ecorp appoints new MD for eBay Australia, NZ
Ecorp has appointed Simon Smith as managing director of its online auction joint venture business - eBay Australia and New Zealand...

4  Telstra pawn in political game
A POLITICAL furore has erupted over the future of Telstra, with Labor promising to never fully privatise the no. 1 telco and the Coalition accusing Labor of a secret agenda to do so...
Australian IT

4  Compaq boss calls for national action
The development of Australia's IT industry suffers from a lack of co-ordination between governments according to Ian Penman, the longest-serving chief executive in the computer industry in Australia...


4  Bezos Says Amazon.com to Diversify Further
The chief executive of the world's biggest Internet retailer Amazon.com rejected on Monday criticism of the group's expansion strategy amid a sagging share price, saying it would diversify further...

4  Piracy -- to catch a (Web) thief
The sale of pirated and counterfeit goods over the Internet is booming to the tune of $13 billion per year, and the flat-footed feds are having a tough time busting the bad guys...

4  Netscape 6: Bad message for biz users
The revamped browser will have more Web-surfing capability -- but it lags when it comes to messaging. Will this kill its corporate appeal?...

4  Freeserve cuts off heavy users
The UK internet service provider is cutting off hundreds of subscibers to its 'unlimited' access plans because they are spending too much time online...

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Copyright © 2000, Bruce Simpson, free republication rights available on request