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Searching For A Start Page? 6 December 2000 Edition
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It seems that every online publisher wants to become your entry-point to the Internet these days.

By claiming this premium space, a website is able to gain valuable hits each and every time you log on -- and that's good for business. After all, would msn.co.nz really be NZ's most popular website (according to Hitwise) if it weren't the default startup page on so many copies of Internet Explorer?

A quick search for the words "make this your homepage" within the dot-NZ namespace returns hundreds of sites all vying for this coveted prize -- and now there's another quality contender on the scene.

Readers Say
(updated hourly)
From Yesterday:

Encryption Keys... - Tony

Forced encryption key disclosure... - Bernhard

BCC "bug"... - Richard

New Zealand Bill of Rights Act 1990... - Michael

My reasonable may not equal Your reasonable... - Rob

Encyption... - David

Have Your Say

IDG has just announced its entry in the NZ search-engine and "wannabe your start-page" space with the launch of SearchNOW.

A few simple searches run through the site seem to indicate that it performs very well. It's fast, flexible and effective -- who could ask for more?

My own NZ search-engine of choice has always been SearchNZ and, while SearchNOW probably isn't going to replace it on my bookmark list, it's certainly going to offer some strong competition.

If I had to say something negative about SearchNOW (and what Aardvark commentary would be complete without the obligatory moan?) it would have to be that the news content on the front page appears to have been chosen with a view to protecting the publisher's other interests rather than offering the visitor any real choice.

IDG's own publications and INL's Stuff seem to be the only sources of this news material and that's a shame. If the publisher could bear to take a broader perspective and offer the visitor a wider choice then this site would score much higher on the list of wannabe browser-start pages.

Come on Martin, there are plenty of great news resources on the local web so why not aggregate some links from The NZ Herald, NZoom, Scoop, NewsRoom and the other excellent NZ news providers out there. You might be surprised at just how much you gain by offering the visitor more value.

What do readers think of the SearchNOW site? Will you be making it your browser-start page? Just what is your browser-start page anyway?

Tell me or Aardvark's readers through the contact form.

Aardvark Weekly, The First Edition
As mentioned at the top of this page, I have just spent almost a week in Singapore where I met with a number of key people in the new economy area in both formal and informal settings.

The first edition of the new Weekly will include my observations on the rather surprising (to me) way that the some members of the Asian sector of the finance industry and new economy views little old NZ and its attempts to break into the new economy.

Rest assured that my inquiries into the activities of those heading some of our own public new economy companies continues and will also be included in the weekly at the earliest possible opportunity.

If you want to receive the "all new" Aardvark Weekly in PDF format by email then please use the contact form to leave your email address.

All who have subscribed should receive a confirmation email on Wednesday and, once they have confirmed, they should get the first edition by email within 24 hours.

As always, email addresses submitted for the purposes of receiving the Weekly will not be given away, sold, bent, spindled, mutilated or otherwise abused and you will not receive anything other than the weekly as a result of signing up.

As always, your feedback is welcomed and...

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

4  NZ Urged Skip To LLU
Competitive access to unbundled local loop plus affordable two-way bandwidth are pivotal if New Zealand’s small cutting-edge businesses are to compete in the global economy, says Covad international director James Earl...
NZ.Internet.com

4  IDG launches SearchNOW for .nz
IDG Communications has launched SearchNOW – a search engine dedicated to the .nz space...
IDG NZ

4  NZ lagging behind in closing digital divide
New Zealand is lagging behind the United States, the United Kingdom, Canada and Australia in its efforts to close the "digital divide", official reports say...
Stuff

Other

4  DoubleClick cuts 150 jobs
Reeling from cutbacks at dot.com companies, Internet advertising agency DoubleClick laid off about 150 employees, or 7 percent of its work force, industry sources confirmed Tuesday...
CNNfn

4  Coca-Cola considers more Net advertising
U.S. food and drinks company Coca-Cola aims to increase spending on Internet and interactive media advertising in a drive to improve communication with consumers, its chief marketing officer said on Tuesday...
CNet

4  Sun Gives Java Developers A Fast Fix
Sun Microsystems Inc. plans to unveil on Dec. 11 a new version of its Forte Java tools suite, which promises to help users develop enterprise-scale, server-side Java applications more quickly...
TechWeb

4  MP3.com reopens service for free, and for fee
The controversial music-streaming service, My.MP3.com, reappears in two forms--one paid, the other free--as the company attempts to emerge from its legal entanglements...
CNet

4  Bluetooth's Grin Gets Old
Bluetooth fans and Godot have something in common: Folks are still waiting. When will its promise of widespread communication arrive?...
Wired

Australia

4  Broadband access draws flak
The world's two biggest technology companies on Tuesday renewed the attack on the Federal Government and Telstra for failing to deliver affordable broadband internet access across Australia...
AFR

4  Can hacker crack million-dollar dare?
An Australian company, that claims to have developed the ultimate security-proof system, will soon issue a multi-million dollar dare to the hacking underworld. Are you game?...
ZDNet

4  ABC strike: new media under fire
The ABC will be given no extra money to finance online ventures, amid a 24-hour strike over the broadcaster's funds and accusations of management 'obsessing' with new media at the expense of core programming...
ZDNet

4  Telstra announces R&D overhaul
Telstra today announced a major overhaul of its research activities, including the appointment of former Telstra Research Laboratories managing director Hugh Bradlow as Chief Technology Officer...
Fairfax

Other

4  EU Passes Law to Speed Up Internet Revolution
The European Union on Tuesday gave final approval to a law aimed at helping Europe to catch up with the Internet revolution in the United States and Asia...
Yahoo

4  China To Tighten Web Regulation
In its latest effort to place restrictions on Internet usage, China intends to tighten regulation of online bulletin boards, Beijing's top telecommunications official said Tuesday...
AP

4  Mac OS X apps on a slow track
Developers are making the transition to Mac OS X, but few predict their products will be ready when the new OS ships. One exception? Microsoft...
ZDNet

4  Microsoft buys game firm
Microsoft Corp., the leading computer software company, said on Tuesday it would acquire privately held game developer Digital Anvil, continuing its push to acquire game makers for its soon-to-be-released console...
CNNfn


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

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