Microsoft, my very favourite software company, has a big security announcement to make. In order to prevent people from downloading dangerous ActiveX components from the Web, the company says, the next issue of Explorer will classify Web sites into (I paraphrase) 'very safe', 'safe', 'dodgy' and 'don't touch'.
As an exercise in solving the underlying security flaws in ActiveX it's on a par with categorising areas of the UK as good, bad and indifferent. One wonders how AOL will cope with having its Web site stamped as 'don't touch'; under the proposed scheme, it's certainly impossible to say anything else about it, because AOL as a service provider has no way--and no interest--in filtering what its users put up. However, there are many good places on AOL where small companies and other groups can make some damn fine ideas available to all