Monthly Archives: December 1999

The next Net battle: Time.

The next Net battle: Time. The UK government wants to create a universal Internet time standard based on Greenwich Mean Time. They’re giving it a new name: “Get,” for Greenwich Electronic Time — although it’s not clear how Get differs from GMT.

To get Get accepted as a standard, of course, the Brits will have to go head-to-head against Swatch, which is touting their own Net time standard. Swatch’s standard is based not on hours, minutes, and seconds, but on a day of 1,000 “beats,” each one about a minute and a half long. I guess you’d need to buy a new watch to keep track of *that* time, now, wouldn’t you?
Greenwich could mark web time

Here’s an interesting review of

Here’s an interesting review of the year in Internet access appliances, from a site devoted to news about Net devices. As the review points out, wireless access to the Web really started to take off in 1999, with Sprint PCS introducing a Web phone service, and Nokia selling WAP (Wireless Application Protocol) cell phones like hotcakes.

The review predicts that 2000 will see a boom in non-PC Net devices, but errs (I believe) in predicting that boom will start with fixed appliances such as set-top boxes connected to TVs. These appliances haven’t experienced a boom yet; why should 2000 be any different? Clearly, Internet-enabled phones offer people something they want and can use — while the set-top box manufacturers still haven’t figured out a compelling way to integrate TV and the Net. That’s why I think the coming year’s boom in Net appliances will focus on wireless devices, starting with cell phones and handheld organizers.

Net Dreams Turned Into Reality In 1999