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  Anvil Issue Nineteen

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*Anvil is a weekly newsletter and Web site providing insight into online industry news, issues and trends in easy to swallow caplets. Happy Valentine’s Day!
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TOP INDUSTRY NEWS
*Roizen Chokes On Apple
*Web Focus At Demo 97

DESIGN
*Mining For Gold
*Visit Oregon Online

HOSTING
*Swiss Crack The Code
*Look Who’s Talking

MARKETING
*Online Pubs Make Bucks
*Evaluating Customers

TOP WEB PICKS
*NetValentine
*Match.com
*Anti-Valentine’s Day Page
*The Love Test
*Cyrano


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TOP INDUSTRY NEWS
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*Roizen Chokes On Apple
The recent trials for Apple Computer may have hit an all-time low with the recent resignation of Vice President of Developer Relations, Heidi Roizen. Effective February 19, Roizen will be vacating her position after less than a year of service. When Roizen joined Apple, she stated she would only leave for three reasons: if she was fired, the company went bankrupt or if she was asked to lie to developers. While she admitted none of these reasons were at the core of her decision, the move further feeds the fire now raging within Apple’s senior management. Roizen attributes her departure largely to the recent top management shakeup and the desire to spend more time with her kids. The vacancy, a final blow to developers who view Roizen as a champion for their cause, could result in many developers abandoning ship for Microsoft. Expect Microsoft to step in and aid the injured company to alleviate the possible monopolistic market implications.
http://www.sjmercury.com/business/apple/roiz210.htm

*Web Focus At Demo 97
For the past few years, Demo 97 at Indian Wells has been the hot spot for the latest Internet Technology. This year is no exception. Popular applications included information push technology, intranet and Internet telephony. Flagship product debuts included Progressive Network’s RealVideo 1.0 and related server systems, Sun’s $50 software that will turn old PCs into Network Computers (NCs) and the abundance of Internet telephony products which handle e-mail, fax and Web browsing capabilities. Additional products of interest include Kodak’s Digital Video Camera (DVC 300) which can take still or motion pictures and Java intranet push software applications from WebCast and SoftQuad. Perhaps one of the most significant announcements was the Wired Desktop, a Java based push technology based on Marimba Castanet software. The newsworthy aspect is that Wired will produce channels for all types of push applications, including PointCast, Microsoft’s Active Desktop and Netscape’s Constellation software.
http://www.news.com/News/Item/0,4,7770,4000.html


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DESIGN
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*Mining For Gold
The Mining Company recently launched what will hopefully be the largest network of people-powered special-interest Web sites on the Internet. While the undertaking is ambitious to say the least, founder Scott Kurnit, has the experience to make it happen. Kurnit was formerly a CEO of MCI/News Corp. and closely connected to startup ventures of large corporations including Viacom, Prodigy and Time Warner. His goal is to hire "guides" to develop and monitor the highly specific special-interest sites. Each of the estimated 4,000 sites will contain vastly different content yet maintain a similar look and feel. The business model includes advertising revenue from banner advertising, which will help subsidize guides. The benefit to advertisers is highly targeted messaging, of value to users is the ability to find detailed information on highly specific topics of interest and the benefit to "guides" is the potential for exposure and revenue. Early estimates for guide revenue range from $3,000 to $30,000 a month. While this model is perhaps the future of the Internet, limited technology could prevent the site from reaching its full potential.
http://www.miningco.com

*Visit Oregon Online
Those looking to plan a vacation to the ocean, mountain, rivers, lakes or deserts need look no further. The Oregon Tourism Commission recently launched a comprehensive online resource site. Whether looking for something new to do on the weekends within Oregon (pronounced "ORE-GUN" not "OR-REY-GONE"), or researching for an upcoming vacation, this Web site has the answers. The site provides information by region or by interest. Visitors can use the event calendar to find out what they are missing, or submit stories about Oregon for possible publication. The site, designed by VIVOMEDIA, covers all areas of interest, from camping to snowboarding to wine tasting.
http://www.traveloregon.com


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HOSTING
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*Swiss Crack The Code
RSA Data Security, the leader in data encryption software, recently held a contest to help prove current 48-bit standards are insecure. The combination public relations and mathematical challenge ended when a team of Swiss programmers used 3,500 computers throughout Europe to break the ciphered algorithms in just 13 days. The test effectively demonstrated current government regulations on encryption levels are unsecure. The lowest level of code, 40 bits, was cracked in less than 4 hours by a graduate student at the University of Califonia at Berkeley. While domestic encryption is currently unlimited, international regulations allow vendors to export up to 56-bit encryption if the vendor agrees to build in a key recovery system that would help law enforcement officials decrypt messages implicated in criminal cases.
http://www.news.com/News/Item/0,4,7849,4000.html

*Look Who’s Talking
Users beware! The latest Internet scam involves modem manipulation resulting in huge long-distance phone bills. For now, the hack is limited to sex-related sites. Basically, the scam involves "downloading" an image viewer for "special" pictures. While users believe they are viewing free photos of Pamela Anderson, the program stealthily turns off the PC modem speaker, disconnects from your ISP and redials a number in Moldova, which then connects to a server in Canada. While users enjoy the view, they are quietly spending their life savings on one long-distance call. The worst part is that charges continue even as users leave the site, as they have no idea they are hooked up to an unknown server. Keep your eyes peeled for files with the name david.exe or david7.exe on your hard drive.
http://www.nytimes.com/library/cyber/week/021197scam.html


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MARKETING
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*Online Pubs Make Bucks
According to a survey conducted by the Newspaper Association of America, more than one third of online newspapers made money last year. The survey also stated another 24 percent of online newspapers run by traditional media companies expect to be profitable within four years. A large portion of the revenues were generated via classified and banner advertising, with additional income from classifieds, Internet access, hosting and subscription services. Of those papers surveyed, 75 percent contained classified advertising and 52 percent provided banner advertising. Industry experts predict classified advertising will be one of the largest revenue generators, so many companies are scrambling to make a buck. Yahoo recently developed free national classifieds by city, including employment, real estate, personals and equipment. While Yahoo and Pacific Bell’s AtHand service are generating stiff competition for traditional print, newspapers with both print and online classified can offer a value-add service which will likely shore-up their dwindling income opportunities.
http://www.news.com/News/Item/0,4,7797,4000.html

*Evaluating Customers
E-valuations Research recently launched their online market research service at Questions.net. Any Web surfer over 18 and living in the U.S. can visit the site to complete questionnaires. Participants receive multiple entries to win the $1000 monthly sweepstakes as well as prize points to trade for CD’s, books,
movie tickets, videos, subscriptions, online games, club memberships, frequent flyer miles. Participants with a big heart can even donate winnings to charity. For companies interested in the program, E-valuations Research offers access to the data through affiliated research firms, advertising agencies and design firms.
http://www.evaluations.com
http://www.questions.net/


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TOP WEB PICKS
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*NetValentine
In case you didn’t check your calendar today, a friendly reminder to hurry and send a card to your significant other before you end up sleeping on the couch. If you don’t want to walk all the way to the card shop, you can always send a NetValentine to that special someone (as long as they have Internet access and e-mail). Select from one of the many heartwarming images and include a brief personal message.
http://www.netvalentine.com/

*Match.com
For those of us without a significant other who wish to rectify the situation without getting up from the computer, Match.Com offers a great way to meet new people. The service is very popular, and has found as many matches as America’s Most Wanted has found criminals.
http://www.match.com/

*Anti-Valentine’s Day Page
In case you can’t already tell by my tone, Valentine’s Day is overrated. If you agree, this is the site for you. Take refuge from the fattening chocolate and cheesy cards in this wonderful sanctuary.
http://www.netreach.net/~trishy/vday.html

*The Love Test
Those of you interested in testing your true love knowledge need look no further. This site offers a questionnaire that measures love and its dimensions. The scale is made up of 68 items that describe love that were drawn from some current research on love. It should take an hour to complete the test and go through the results.
http://www.topchoice.com/~psyche/lovetest/

*Cyrano
If you find out through the Love Test that you are a wee bit under par for amore, Cyrano will help. If you are shy, lazy or unimaginative, but you would like to tell someone how you feel, Cyrano can write your love letters for you. If you already know the perfect words to say, then you can write the letter yourself. Either way, Cyrano (NetValentine on crutches) will email the recipient of your letter to let him or her know that you care. Your significant other will be amazed at the flowery prose.
http://www.nando.net/toys/cyrano.html

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