| Jul 28, 1999

The little claimer that could

While companies, especially computer makers, have been eager to promote the Internet as a global bazaar and amusement park rolled into one, they are quickly learning that there’s a little more to it than that. The tools that are supposed to help the customer ...

| Jul 14, 1999

Lost and found fnords

The Net is a terrific reference tool. There, I said it, the obvious. It’s like stating that you should use a saw to cut down a tree. But have you ever tried to do an online search for the currency of Bhutan in the ...

| Jun 23, 1999

On the fringe of the fray

I had dinner with two friends last week and eventually the conversation came around to the Web (I generally try to avoid the topic in polite conversation but what can you do?). Anyone overhearing our conversation might have thought we were a trio of ...

| Jun 16, 1999

Vocal as we wanna be

“The process of tying two items together is the important thing,” wrote Vannevar Bush in a seminal essay titled “As We Think,” published in The Atlantic Monthly in 1945. Bush described a hypothetical device that would allow the storage and retrieval of data, the ...

| Jun 2, 1999

But are you experienced?

Remember how online art used to be one of ballyhooed features of our new and improved lives on the Internet? We talked of visiting faraway museums, browsing rarely seen masterpieces, hyper-annotated with curatorial notes and historical contexts. Similarly enticing was the promise of new ...

| May 19, 1999

Voices in the machine

In the hyperaccelerated world of “news,” my topic — the Littleton, Colo., massacre — may seem dated. But in living rooms, classrooms, legislatures and, of course, on the Net, the aftershocks are still reverberating I was in a hotel room in California when I ...

| May 5, 1999

Looking for something?

Run a Web search and what do you get? Often it’s a lot more than you bargained for. I’m not talking about the reams of irrelevant, redundant and irretrievable data that often gets tangled in your throw net. (You should know by now that ...

| Apr 21, 1999

Under your skin

Take a second, forget about trash-can icons and QWERTY keyboards and ponder the real interface — our future interaction with technology. How will we navigate the infosphere in 10 years? Will we use mouses or cursors controlled by biofeedback? Will our browser windows be ...

| Apr 7, 1999

I am what I spam

Tom Clancy couldn’t have weaved a better web of suspense and intrigue. It had everything: a villain working under a string of shadowy aliases; news hype mixed with general chaos; an FBI manhunt led by expert freelance bloodhounds And in the end the Feds ...

| Mar 24, 1999

Degrees of separation

You could say they have an affliction. You’ve probably bumped into them on the street. That is, they bump into you, because they often walk with their eyes fixated on their task, oblivious to any obstacles in their path. You’ve definitely overheard them chatting ...