>> HARD NEWS <<
The monopoly has been smashed. Only days after Judge
Jackson's momentous decision, the iron grip held on the
lucrative "underdog" market by the nigh-omnipotent
LINUX/BEOS/MACOS cartel began slipping away. Areas of
mindshare previously closed off to struggling competitor
MICROSOFT obligingly opened up. JERRY "OS/2 Forever! Linux
When I Work Out How to Run X!" POURNELLE was mandated, by
government edict, to allow Bill Gates "most favoured
innovator" status in his newly opened head. Even Eric S.
Raymond's mind, one of the most fiercely defended domains of
the underdog conspiracy, was freed of its bounds, and
allowed to float toward supporting Redmond, muttering about
government interference. At the centre of the storm, on the
weekend before his COMDEX keynote, Linus "tyrant" Torvalds,
must be a very worried man. What if Transmeta is a success?
What if Redhat's shares continue to rise? What if world
domination means... having everyone feel sorry for Bill?
- next they'll be making me work with Red China, sez ESR
- this also gives Bill access to all that SDI technology
- okay, okay, here's the real analysis
"No such thing as a free lunch", said BT MD Peter Bromfield.
"Let them go to schools, if they want cheap Net access", he
added (reportedly), at a Gartner Group symposium. Well,
looks like both remain true, despite BT bellowing that ISP's
will get cheap access to phone lines, enabling them to offer
- ooh, check this out, thirty hours or so a month free calls
for only thirty quid. And that's not including additional
charges for ISPs. And that's forcing them to use BT's IP
services. No such thing as a free market, certainly.
- Bye, Peter
- The Register has the calculator
One day, all the new .co.uk's are going to realise that the
best way to publicise their site isn't by having fancy ads
during Friends, or indeed, even by getting That Turkish Guy
to link to you. What they really need, is to get shut down
by the establishment. Latest additions to the "mirroring the
easy way": the Lord Chancellor gets an ISP to shut down a
site critical of a judge. Instantly, a bunch of the usual
suspects pop up with copies, and all the papers cover it.
The DVD Forum slap a legal letter on British developer Derek
Fawcus, forcing him to stop work on the open source DVD
decoder. As if by magic, coding begins anew in New Zealand,
and other copyright-liberal zones. Are we seeing a pattern
- a use for William Geiger!
- Declan gets it for covering the story too fast...
- ...then gets it from Lawrence Lessig. Must be doing *something* right..
>> ANTI-NEWS <<
berating the obvious
GUARDIAN reveals that "the Nokia 7110 ... is the first to
use the wireless application protocol (wop)" ... Krazynet:
FALKO! ... BLOCKBUSTER eXistenZ competition leaflet asks:
"How many bits of graphic gaming does the Dreamcast boast?"...
TOMBRAIDER easier in the US, because "Americans thicker"...
Zen Doh: http://www.pifco.com/ ... *spectacularly* bad
Flash animation: http://www.switched-on.org/ ... unfortunate
URLs: http://www.heckler-koch.de/pistfuk.htm ... PRICE
JAMIESON boast in Rev!lu/i0n advert of raising "3UKP in
financing in only 8 days" ... useful chat-up lines: "hey,
aren't Slashdot posters really *creepy*?"... REAL 7.0: now
reports what you're *thinking* of downloading ... Epicurious
- or just bi? http://www.ntk.net/doh/19991112epi.gif ...
from that other censored Website: "Steven Reid, Thesis:
Changes in health and well-being in undergraduate students" ...
>> EVENT QUEUE <<
goto's considered non-harmful
The All Micro Show is back for another year, where "All
Micro" is used in the same sense as "All Man": i.e. macho,
hulking, giant non-PC platforms for a more civilised age.
The show sprawls across the Hangar 17 environs at Bingley
Hall, Stafford, for Saturday 13-11-1999 only, and this year
features contributions from the Computer Junk Shop, the
Judge-Dreddesque "Component Reclaim", the Einstein User
Group, the Tyne & Wear Atari User Group, and "Vic Groom" -
who is either a person or a dressage event, it's hard to
tell. Alternatively, those veterans who unashamedly used
their "educational" micros for playing games should jerk
themselves one character space at a time to Cranfield
"University", Beds for ODYSSEY (Saturday, 27-11-99) - "the
last retro gaming event of the century". Members of guerilla
outfits like the Commodore Faction get discounts - that is,
if "Component Reclaim" doesn't get them first.
- disturbingly sexist slant creeping into these sections, I notice
- ooh ooh Megadrive Bomberman
It's the London Effects and Animation festival next week,
from Tuesday 1999-11-13 until Thursday 1999-11-16.
Spectacles like an "how did they ruin that?" insider's guide
to the unconvincing effects of PHANTOM MENACE, and (it says
here) a preview of Toy Story II are promised, but
unfortunately the effects on their Flash-mired Website make
it impossible to tell when or where these will occur.
Telephone the booking office on 01203 426 514, and pray that
you won't have to download a plug-in just to get a ticket.
- infinite whizzing text and beyond
>> TRACKING <<
making good use of the things that we find
We'd love to see the business plan in NAPSTER's safe: "1.
Bring entire system of intellectual property crashing down
around fat-cat music industry's ears. 2. Sell ads."
Available (in beta) for Windows, the Napster client is one
of the neater ways of finding and sharing MP3s online
without all that tedious messing around in IRC. The server
maintains a list of the clients online, together with info
on their connection, ping-rate, and a searchable database of
all available MP3s. Find the song you want, download it
directly from one of the thousand or so other clients, and
dump it into your local library folder - where you'll be
able to play it and other Napsters will be able to download
it, reducing the load and distributing the responsibility.
There's a touching sense of naivety about Napster's denials
that this is the biggest MP3 warez emporium on the planet.
Could someone reverse engineer the server protocol, and rig
up a free version? You know, just in case?
- #include <stddisclaimer.h>
>> MEMEPOOL <<
hasta la altavista
it's the Boo of poo! http://www.dogdoo.com/ ... DO NOT DRINK
THE COOLANT: http://totl.net/Eunuch/ ... wear ALAN close to
your heart: http://www.thinkgeek.com/geekgod ... ROB
WITTIG's latest: http://www.tank20.com/v4/lead.html ...
playing the "spot the canine erection" in the LYCOS ads ...
"offshore programmers" spams ... welcome to our humble site,
Mr Bond: http://www.villains.co.uk/ ... Jay, Bob, Bill, Ted
and Adam and Joe too: http://members.aol.com/jaybobbillted ...
"Take that C'T pranksters!": http://www.wulfstation.org/
... the "vibrating internal pager" - astounding tech
innovation, or just those SODA.CO.UK artists looking for
hits? http://www.v-i-p.co.uk ... Worst possible Millennium
evening: http://www.hants.gov.uk/hampshirenow/hype.html ...
we still think the new "I like animals. I'm graduated from
two universities. And at last I like sex as every are having
active sexual life" would make better lyrics:
http://www.christ.org/ ... slightly *too* well-targeted, we
... most liable to backfire publicity gimmick?
>> GEEK MEDIA <<
get out less
FILM>> "If I could fight anyone, I'd fight *William
Shatner*", paraphrases Ed Norton, promisingly, in David
"Alien 3" Fincher's supervisual homoerotic Brad Pitt
beat-em-up FIGHT CLUB (http://www.capalert.com/capreports/ :
fighting and beatings; encouraging sadness; arrogant
risk-taking in traffic; punk music in startup background;
masturbation encouraged as acceptable; insane servitude to
evil) - arguably the "Starship Troopers" of ironic
anti-consumer/ confused manhood schtick... lush imagery also
enlivens deeply moving Glasgow teen estate weepie RATCATCHER
(imdb: not to be confused with similarly themed Lee Evans
slapstick "Mouse Hunt")... while the most interesting thing
about male Pygmalion imposter costumer THE TICHBORNE
CLAIMANT (imdb: UK) is that it marks the first release of
Cliff Stanford's http://www.films.redbus.co.uk Redbus
Distribution, to be followed next week by yet another
critically acclaimed minutely-observed period drama, THE
RAGE: CARRIE 2...
TV>> After demolishing the Catholic church, the Father Ted
writers aim their satirical railguns at that other pillar of
the establishment - HIPPIES (Fri, 21:30, BBC2)... while
Richard "Slacker" Linklater's tackles the Seventies in DAZED
AND CONFUSED (Fri, 23:20, BBC2) starring Milla "Supreme
Being" Jovovovovich (for about twelve seconds)... the BBC
breaks with their long tradition and dusts off the TARDIS
for an occasion other than a telethon for DOCTOR WHO NIGHT
(Sat, 20:55-00:30, BBC2) - from the first Dalek story to the
franchise's 1996 ritual suicide... the presence of bearded,
good Robin Williams should be enough to tempt you towards
Gilliam's underrated THE FISHER KING (Sun, 23:40, BBC2)...
two-parter THE ALCHEMISTS (Mon, 21:00, C5) takes us into
"the clandestine world of genetic engineering" - those wacky
scientists, eh?... just when you though those comedy
gameshow pitches couldn't become more convoluted, Mel and
Sue's CASTING COUCH (Mon, 22:30, ITV) beckons - a sort of
"Hello! Have I Got Celebrity Rumours For You"... it remains
to be seen how often the beeb will use a new WEBWISE strand
to promote its own ISP, but POSTCARDS FROM THE NET (Mon,
23:20, BBC2) promises "strong language" so it can't be all
bad... on the other hand "Auntie" has no problem pimping out
Tomorrow's Whores for BOND AND BEYOND (Wed, 19:30, BBC1) a
half hour special conveniently timed to coincide with the
marketing push for some movie or other... and a return to
the old-fashioned values in HELLRAISER III (Wed, 23:25, C4)
where Terry "Dax" Farrell takes on that unconvincing
sculpture thing from the end of Bloodlines... but instead of
relentless gore, why not project some positivity into your
week with (Do-do do-do-do) PHENOMENON (Thu, 21:00, C5) and,
while you're waiting, why not participate in a free
>> SMALL PRINT <<
Need to Know is a useful and interesting UK digest of things that
happened last week or might happen next week. You can read it
on Friday afternoon or print it out then take it home if you have
nothing better to do. It is compiled by NTK from stuff they get sent.
It is registered at the Post Office as
"membarrgrhr gragagha aaargghssociate program gragrgg"
NEED TO KNOW
THEY STOLE OUR REVOLUTION. NOW WE'RE STEALING IT BACK.
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