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Lighten Up 27 October 2000 Edition
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Time for your weekly dose of levity, stupidity and weird stuff.

What Are They Trying To Tell Us?
Here's one way of voicing your discontent with some of the big names on the Net. Check out what domain names include the term Apple.com and Microsoft.com

News of the Weird
True stories that prove fact is often stranger than fiction.

Patented Baldness Treatment
Male pattern baldness is a common problem and many men stupidly try to disguise this condition through "careful combing." This patented process offers to document that time-proven technique.

Readers Say
(updated hourly)
America's Cup - Greg
Have Your Say
Could Do Better?
I've rounded up a number of items that I've collectively titled "could do better" and which show that there are still many sites which are decidedly in need of an oil-change and polish.

Excuse Me?
Note: since this piece was written -- the site at sitestarter.co.nz seems to have strangely disappeared.

One site is (was) offering a step-by-step method of obtaining an online web presence through its SiteStarter system. Unfortunately the task of applying for a domain name is hardly "state of the art". Check out the instructions on the bottom of this form.

Then there's the rather strange advice on this page which suggests you add a fourth-level to any selected domain name when it says:

"Rather than using a general email address (jb.company@xtra.co.nz) you could register a domain name, such as jb.company.co.nz."

Oops... more porkies!
Here's another site that claims "All personal and credit card information that you provide is safe. Our secure server software (the industry-standard SSL) is the best encryption software available today".

The EzSurf signup form is not served from a secure server. I clicked right through from the site's front page and there was no sign of an https:// anywhere.

However, there is a secure server at Ezysurf -- but look what happens when you try to use it.

Rugby and Politics
This is way off-topic I know but, in the wake of a certain politician passing comment on the sensibilities of a winning Wellington rugby player:

If it's okay for some politicians to play with half a brain, why can't rugby players compete with half an arm?"

The Weekly
Yes, I know the first edition of the weekly has yet to appear -- but I'm still working on it.

Hopefully (if current leads pan out) it will include a very interesting expose' into the astoundingly bad behaviour of a group of local "new economy" company directors (some of who are also on the board of a public company). Just how competent and ethical are the managers of some of our hi-tech public companies?

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There is 1 new press release today

As always, your feedback is welcomed.

Latest
Security Alerts
Sun advises of a potential compromise of 2 specific security certificates (CERT)

IE 5.5 hole lets hackers read files (CNet)

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)

Latest
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  Nick Wood: it's "war" - but no more casualties
Further "structural changes" foreshadowed in a leaked email from Ihug boss Nick Wood to his managers will not involve redundancies, says Wood...
IDG NZ

4  Online readiness costs ANZ $41m
ANZ New Zealand chalked up a net $A31 million ($41 million) in tax-paid abnormal costs in the September financial year, mostly in repositioning itself for the online economy...
NZ Herald

4  Telecom's Global Gateway to offer news, name service
Telecom has hatched a replacement for its Netgate international IP service which appears to crowd in on traditional retail ISP services...
IDG NZ

Other

4  Microsoft fights for European Net dominance
Credit Suisse Group unveiled an Internet partnership deal with Microsoft on Thursday as the U.S. software giant aims to become the most popular Web destination in Europe...
CNet

4  PlayStation 2 spanks Sony
Consumer electronics heavyweight Sony Corp. reported Thursday net profit sank 57.4 percent in the July-September quarter due mainly to the strong yen and costs of rolling out its new PlayStation 2 video game player...
CNNfn

4  Europe Web boom seen
Europe's Internet economy is set to break the $1 trillion barrier within four years, growing at a compound annual growth rate of 87 percent...
CNNfn

4  Startups Wait Out the Drought
Companies formed when IPOs were red-hot are prepared to weather the current winter of public-offering discontent. The fledgling firms are confident of a market rebound...
Wired

4  Honoring the Dearly Dot-Departed
Is a memorial to the dead dot-coms funny or sad? "It feels like we're all gathering in the palace and partying while the black plague rages out there among the peasants," observers one mourner...
Wired

Australia

4  Web of deceit grows
THREE quarters of Australia's top 100 internet sites collect personal information on people who visit them but less than a quarter tell users they are doing so, a survey has found...
Australian IT

4  News Limited admits email blunder
A mistake by the Sunday Herald Sun has revealed the names and email addresses of thousands of people...
NewsWire

4  Australia lags in ecommerce
New South Wales, Queensland, the Northern Territory and Tasmania are well behind in the new economy, according to a Federal Government report...
NewsWire

4  Another 20 year tech boom?
There are predictions that e-business will keep the good times rolling - for at least another 20 years? ...
ZDNet Australia

Other

4  Rich Nations Disagree on Standards for Net Crime
German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder called Thursday for global standards to help fight a rapid spread of cyber crime, but Internet experts meeting in Berlin said countries remained far apart on the issue...
Yahoo

4  GE Chairman Jack Welch Says 'Dot-Coms' Not a Threat
Jack Welch, General Electric Co.'s famously feisty chairman, predicts ``dot-com'' firms will be left in the dust by big companies like GE that embrace the Internet...
Yahoo

4  Napster swings out version for the Mac
Now Macintosh users have an official way to access one of the hottest sites on the Internet...
ZDNet

4  .ca Deadline Causes Online Crunch
As Canadian Web operators attempt to comply with a new .ca domain system, many are finding themselves unable to log on to the Web site for the Canadian Internet Registration Authority (CIRA)...
InternetNews


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

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