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News Center Top Story Archives
Week of March 26th, 1998
Issue 12, Volume III
NEWS ABOUT THE PROGRAM
1. Help Us Get The FAQs Straight
REGIONAL NETPRENEURS
1. Hot Off The Coffee & DoughNets Griddle
2. Web Software For Flight Management
3. Business Graphics For Newspapers
4. Blackboard Unveils Educational Metadata Specs
5. COMSAT Links South America With Satellite ATM
6. Peak Releases Wireless Warehouse
7. DC Registry Offers Free Web Sites
8. Navigate Federal Government Info More Easily
9. Fooling Around With The IRS
PARTNERSHIPS
1. Cable & Wireless And GMU In Virtual Reality Project
2. Media Exchange Adds UPI Content
3. Hughes To Install DirecPC Kiosks
4. Microstate And Risk Science Tackle The Insurance Industry
5. BRC And Entrepreneur Magazine Help With Franchises
6. Nascent And Qualcomm Show Mobile Email Access
7. E-Net To Market In Europe With ComTel
FUNDING & FINANCE NEWS
1. $1.8 Billion Went To Internet Firms In 1997
NETPRENEURS RECOGNIZED
1. webMethods Voted Most Influential
REGIONAL NEWS
1. Call For Nominations: Online Newspaper Awards


News About The Netpreneur Program

1. HELP US GET THE FAQS STRAIGHT
What good is being a community if you can't pick each other's brains? That's the idea behind FAQtory-- mining the minds of netprenurs, Program discussion groups, events and idle chit-chat for the latest-and-straightest knowledge that can help netpreneurs succeed.

FAQtory now has some 50 FAQs, proto-FAQs and FAQlettes in the areas of Management, Marketing, Funding and Technology on topics ranging from Reseller Commissions to Linking and Domain Name Laws, Protecting Your Ideas, Resources for Early-Stage Businesses and choosing software for Chat, Shopping Cart and Reseller applications.

You'll find information, personal experiences and opinions from experts and working netpreneurs which you can use when dicing through these kinds of questions and challenges yourself.

On every FAQ you'll also find a "Contribute" button. Rally your community spirit and help make the FAQtory explications more complete by adding your own thoughts. Think of it as enlightened self-interest. Next time you've got to put together a quick compensation offer for that hot shot Marketing VP candidate ( http://netpreneur.org/netcorner/faqtory/ttcomp.html ), you'll be glad Peter Kennedy, Hans Tallis, Miles Fawcett, Neil Harris and Esther Smith each took a few minutes to offer their advice. If you're that Marketing VP who just got that swell comp package, return the favor with some pointers on Customer Interest Polls or Advertising Costs . You can also use the "Contribute" button to send new questions to our FAQulty.

FAQtory: http://netpreneur.org/FAQtory

Regional Netpreneurs

1. HOT OFF THE COFFEE&DOUGHNets GRIDDLE
(Washington, DC) The March Coffee & DoughNets meeting was held today (look for an article and transcript soon at the site soon). As always, netpreneurs shared their news and milestones with the group. Here's a round-up of announcements so new that nobody's had time to do the press release yet.

+ Paul Albert announced that RouteLink was chosen as one of 24 companies to present at Comdex under the auspices of Red Herring Magazine. http://www.routelink.com

+ Neil Harris said that interactive gamer Simutronics has entered a revenue- sharing partnership with Excite. http://www.simucon.com

+ Jason Baranowski said that Gr8 is exploring a potential partnership with SynchroMedia from a contact made through the Netpreneur Program's ActionNet bulletin board. http://www.gr8.com

+ Matthew Pittinsky announced that Blackboard, Inc. will be moving to bigger digs in downtown Washington, and that Microsoft has hired Blackboard to set the learning technology standards for their company. http://www.blackboard.net/home.htm

+ According to Kent Johnson, Internet Information Services recently completed a major engagement with Iridium LLC, deploying a wireless satellite-based messaging system and extranet. http://www.iis.com

+ Alain Chetrit said that First Regional Telecom received its Virginia State CLEC license and can now begin providing local telephone service.

2. WEB SOFTWARE FOR FLIGHT MANAGEMENT
(Washington, DC) SkySource, Inc. released a new version of the company's Web-based flight tracking and airport status software tools. The tools can be accessed over the Internet by subscribers such as flight dispatchers, commercial aircraft operators and others who manage aviation operations. The company's flight tracking product, WebASD, is a JAVA-based tool with weather overlays. It graphically displays real-time FAA radar position reports and is used by airlines and aviation companies to track flights. SkySource also released a new version of WebAirport, a tool that provides access to real-time weather and airport information. WebAirport allows dispatchers to monitor forecasts, weather conditions, Digital ATIS information like active runways and trends at major airports.

SkySource: http://www.skysource.net

3. BUSINESS GRAPHICS FOR NEWSPAPERS
(Richmond, VA) Media General Financial Services, Inc. (MGFS) introduced a Web-based graphics service for use by the business pages of daily and weekly newspapers. The Financial Sidebar service is the flagship product of MGFS's BizPage Interactive site. MGFS is a provider of current and historical financial data on US publicly traded companies. The Financial Sidebar graphics provide financial information on over 9,000 public companies and 215 industries. These graphics illustrate price charts, revenue data, earnings per share data, ratios, returns and general company information. Business editors and writers can choose from six different graphics, depending on the content of the feature or article they need to enhance. Financial Sidebar is available for a flat, monthly subscription fee based on the newspaper's circulation.

BizPage Interactive: http://www.mgfsbizpage.com
Media General Financial Services: http://www.mgfs.com

4. BLACKBOARD UNVEILS EDUCATIONAL METADATA SPECS
(Washington, DC) Blackboard, Inc. released specifications for the technology that software companies and publishers can use to label educational resources on the Internet. The "metadata" technology makes it easier for people to find educational resources, to individualize learning experiences and to manage the resources within an electronic marketplace. Created on behalf of an industry standards initiative sponsored by Educom, the Instructional Management Systems (IMS) project, the specification represents a significant consensus on a common set of metadata for educational materials. The IMS metadata specification is endorsed by many courseware authoring and management product vendors. Among the companies funding Blackboard's work and endorsing the IMS specifications are Microsoft, Sun, Apple, IBM, Unisys, Oracle, KPMG Peat Marwick, International Thomson Publishing, DoD Training Division and many colleges and universities. The IMS project will release specifications in four other areas over the next two months. These include a specification for how to create interoperable content which is described by metadata, the specification of student profile information, how to create management systems that can use interoperable content, and external interfaces to services such as student record systems and electronic commerce.

Blackboard: http://www.blackboard.net/home.htm

5. COMSAT LINKS SOUTH AMERICA WITH SATELLITE ATM
(Bethesda, MD) COMSAT World Systems announced that the world's first commercial Asynchronous Transfer Mode (ATM) satellite link is up and running, extending the US Internet backbone to several South American countries. The ATM satellite link, which has service quality comparable to fiber, will carry Internet traffic between Puerto Rico's Telefonica Larga Distancia (TLD) and South America. ATM connections enable companies to transmit high-speed, high-bandwidth applications simultaneously over a single network. The link supports applications at speeds up to 34 Mbps outbound from Puerto Rico to South America. Traffic inbound to Puerto Rico from South America will be supported at speeds up to 8 Mbps. ATM via Satellite is compatible with all major ATM network components.

COMSAT: http://www.comsat.com

6. PEAK RELEASES WIRELESS WAREHOUSE
(Columbia, MD) Peak Technologies released the latest version of Wireless Warehouse for Windows NT, the company's Radio Frequency (RF)-based warehouse management system. Wireless Warehouse offers a rules-based architecture that allows users to define their warehouse environment and improve their methods of tracking materials from receiving through shipping. The architecture consists of a Windows NT client/server environment that supports high transaction levels and throughput, an Oracle7 and a Graphical User Interface that promotes intuitive learning. In addition, the RF technology allows for inquiry capabilities, bringing information to the hand-held terminal operated by warehouse personnel.

Peak Technologies: http://www.peaktech.com

7. DC REGISTRY OFFERS FREE WEB SITES
(Washington, DC) Washington, DC Registry, an online guide to the DC area, is making it easy for individuals, businesses and organizations in the region to create their own free Web sites. No knowledge of Internet protocols is required, nor do visitors have to rent any server space. Users can create or update their sites while visiting their local library, public school or any other public place with Internet access. To create a site from the Registry's main Web site, select "Free Home Pages" to fill out an online template that automatically generates a home page with background colors and graphics, images, sound, guest book, search engine and links to other sites.

DC Registry: http://www.dcregistry.com

8. NAVIGATE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT INFO MORE EASILY
(Columbia, MD) A 1996 Washington Post survey of federal computing activity reported 42 departments and agencies spent $490 million on 4,300 separate Web sites and 215 bulletin boards. Federal Gateway is a new, free Web site produced by the Small Business Contract Council, Inc. (SBCC) that consolidates all the federal agency public Internet resources at one location, simplifying the task of acquiring federal government information. According to SBCC, the two traditional difficulties in finding federal information are locating the agency that has the information you need and then searching through what can be a massive site to find your data. Federal Gateway offers an overview of the entire federal government with a listing of key links and topic outlines of the agency queried.

Federal Gateway: http://fedgate.org

9. FOOLING AROUND WITH THE IRS
(Alexandria, VA) The Motley Fool is unveiling tax information, education and tips. Topics like the Roth IRA, the Child Tax Credit, filling out the Schedule D form and more are covered in the Fool's School section, hosted by resident tax expert, Roy Lewis. The Fool is also making it easy for visitors to tell Washington how they feel about the tax laws by using links to members of Congress, Senators, and the Joint Committee on Taxation.

The Motley Fool: http://www.fool.com

Partnerships

1. CABLE & WIRELESS AND GMU IN VIRTUAL REALITY PROJECT
(Vienna, VA) Cable & Wireless, Inc. (CWI) will work with the George Mason University (GMU) Internet Multimedia Center (IMC) as one of four companies to participate in the 1998-99 Project Development & New Media Training Program. CWI will collaborate with three specially chosen GMU graduate students and multimedia professionals on a virtual reality Internet multimedia project. The project, entitled Virtual Main Street, creates an interactive, multimedia environment using real-life scenarios to help users better understand the business applications of telecommunications. CWI's Sales Training Department will use Virtual Main Street to help sales personnel find tailored telecom services to fit their customers.

Cable & Wireless: http://www.cwi.net
GMU: http://www.gmu.edu

2. MEDIA EXCHANGE ADDS UPI CONTENT
(Washington, DC) Media Exchange International (MEI) will add United Press International (UPI) to its list of content providers. UPI will provide its news, photos, audio and video to the MEI service, making them available for the first time on a pay-per-use basis rather than exclusively to subscribers. Headquartered in Washington, DC, UPI produces national and international news and features for broadcast, print media and electronic content providers. MEI is an independent online marketplace for professional quality video, audio, photos, graphics and data. Delivery of broadband products is available via the Internet, traditional satellite pathways and terrestrial links.

MEI: http://www.mediaexchange.com
UPI: http://www.upi.com/homepage.html

3. HUGHES TO INSTALL DIRECPC KIOSKS
(Germantown, MD) Next time your flight gets delayed, look for the new airport Satellite Surfer Internet/TV kiosk from Hughes Network Systems (HNS) where you'll be able to watch digital satellite television, surf the Web and send email. HNS will launch Satellite Surfer in the next few months using the company's DirecDuo satellite hardware platform to provide the services. Dallas-based Vetec Visitronics developed the user interface for the Satellite Surfer and handles manufacturing of the kiosks. Denver-based Net Works Communications is spearheading the sales and marketing programs for this combined effort.

Hughes Network Systems: http://www.hns.com

4. MICROSTATE AND RISK SCIENCE TACKLE THE INSURANCE INDUSTRY
(Fairfax, VA) The Microstate Corporation and Risk Science, Inc. (RSI) announced a strategic partnership to deliver custom Internet solutions to the insurance industry. The agreement will enable RSI to offer its customers state-of-the-art Web technologies as another tool to achieve their environmental risk management goals. Risk Science uses traditional and non-traditional risk management techniques and tools in identifying, evaluating, controlling and monitoring environmental exposures and risks that directly affect a company's profitability. Microstate provides integrated network solutions to the insurance and financial management industries using its Java-based Hamilton technology.

Microstate: http://microstate.com

5. BRC AND ENTREPRENEUR MAGAZINE HELP WITH FRANCHISES
(Rockville, MD) Jumpstarting a business by buying a franchise can be easier than starting one from scratch. The Business Resource Center (BRC) site, managed by Khera Communications, Inc., now offers connections into Entrepreneur Magazine's Franchise 500 database so aspiring entrepreneurs can research franchise companies before investing their money. The database includes an in-depth snapshot of franchise opportunities, including typical start-up costs, franchise fees, royalties and contact information. The information, and the other resources on the BRC site, can help visitors focus their search for the right opportunity.

Business Resource Center: http://www.morebusiness.com

6. NASCENT AND QUALCOMM SHOW MOBILE EMAIL ACCESS
(Reston, VA) Nascent Technologies, Inc. announced that Atlanta, GA-based Qualcomm, a provider of wireless CDMA technology and maker of the Eudora email product, demonstrated Nascent's Mailspinner technology under the name Qualcomm Mobile Network at CTIA '98, the wireless industry's leading trade show. Nascent's Mailspinner technology provides access via a Web browser to open-standards email accounts. Qualcomm's newest CDMA digital phones are pre-equipped with a mini-Web browser.

Nascent: http://www.nascent.com
Qualcomm: http://www.qualcomm.com

7. e-NET TO MARKET IN EUROPE WITH COMTEL
(Germantown, MD) e-Net, Inc. has entered an agreement with ComTel Electronic Systems GmbH, a Hanover, Germany-based provider of data and telecommunications services and equipment, for the distribution of e-Net's portfolio of data telephony products to customers in Germany and other parts of Europe. The agreement represents e-Net's formal entry into the European Voice-over-Internet Protocol (VOIP) marketplace. e-Net, Inc. develops applications software and associated hardware for telephone communications, information exchange and network optimization.

e-Net: http://www.datatelephony.com

Funding & Finance News

1. $1.8 BILLION WENT TO INTERNET FIRMS IN 1997
At the request of Mecklermedia's Internet.com, Price Waterhouse broke out its numbers on US Internet venture capital for the past three years and presented the results at Spring Internet World. Scott Harmon, Senior Investment Analyst at Internet.com writes about the numbers which show that 422 deals generated $ 1.88 billion for Net companies in 1997. That's 61% more deals and 103% more dollars than in 1996. By sector within the Internet space, 1997 saw $773 million go to software firms (up 113%), $518 million to services firms (up 79%), $485 to infrastructure and access (up 125%) and $144 million to content companies (up 89%). According to Harmon, "Many of the deals fell under the $5 million mark, but our own analysis of Price Waterhouse's survey results indicates that the top 10 deals in dollar value accounted for 15% of all deal dollars." Those top 10 deals totaled `$284 million and ranged from Juniper Networks' $50 million to Exodus Communications' $21 million.

Scott Harmon's Internet.com article:
http://www.internetnews.com/stocks/column/9803/980317.html
Price Waterhouse: http://www.pw.com

Netpreneurs Recognized

1. WEBMETHODS VOTED MOST INFLUENTIAL
(Fairfax, VA) webMethods, Inc. was selected as "the most influential company" by attendees at The Red Herring's 1998 Venture Market South Conference, held last week in Atlanta. webMethods supplies software products that enable XML-based business-to-business e-commerce. Arthur Andersen, headline sponsor of Venture Market South, polled 400 attendees at the second annual conference, and webMethods was selected from among 40 presenting companies. "We chose webMethods to present at Venture Market South because they have a crisp and clear vision of how businesses can really use XML for e-commerce," said John Mecklenberg, program director for Venture Market South. webMethods has also been invited by The Red Herring to present at Herring On The Enterprise, to be held in San Francisco, April 6 and 7. Phillip Merrick, webMethods' President and CEO, will speak on the implications of XML for business-to-business e-commerce.

webMethods: http://www.webMethods.com
The Red Herring: http://herring.com

Regional News

1. CALL FOR NOMINATIONS: ONLINE NEWSPAPER AWARDS
(Vienna, VA) The Newspaper Association of America (NAA) New Media Federation requests nominations for the 1998 Digital Edge Awards. The "Edgies" recognize outstanding newspaper Web sites and new media personnel in eight categories. The deadline for entries is April 15, except for the New Media Pioneer category which is March 30. The awards will be announced at Connections'98, June 18-21, in Orlando, FL. Nominations for the awards are accepted in the following categories: New Media Pioneer, Best Online Newspaper, Best Interactive Feature, Public Service, Classified Use of New Media, Advertising, Best Marketing of an Internet Product and Outstanding Achievement. More info and entry requirements are at the NAA's Web site. The New Media Federation was established to help newspapers understand and take advantage of the opportunities provided by emerging electronic technologies.

NAA: http://www.naa.org/edge



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