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Lacey's Paper Round

Relatively speaking last week was a quiet one for IT. Even the richest man in the world has been left alone to enjoy his wealth as the spotlight, for once, is off Bill Gates and the Microsoft Vs Department of Justice spat.

The real news has been elsewhere, in outer space, Europe, and Reading to be precise. Eh? Let me explain. A space-based ISP is about to blast off, Sony will launch PCs in Europe, and wait for it - Reading is the hottest IT hot spot in Europe. All this, plus millennium fears are grossly exaggerated. But don't relax too much because 'Info-Vikings' are about to rape and pillage your company. Oh and America and the UK are going to war, well - cyber war anyway- before the month's out.

Internet Space Race Hots Up - Business Week

According to Business Week the "Internet Space Race" is hotting up as U.S. telco, McCaw and Bill Gates' $9 billion 'Teledesic' plan gets back on track. Business Week says Teledesic "may be able to begin operating even before its scheduled launch in 2003".

Business Week, June 1, 1998.

M4 - home of hi-tech in the UK - Independent

Forget Silicon Fen, Glen, and Shamrock Valley - if you want to be big in IT you have to be based on the "UK's Silicon Corridor" says the Independent. Reading is the M4 pitstop of choice. "All the top 10 US software companies, and 7 out of 10 top IT suppliers have bases within the borough."...

The Independent, Network+, June 2, 1998.

Sony to launch PCs in Europe - Financial Times

Sony will launch PCs throughout Europe this year. The FT quotes ING Barings analyst, Masashi Kubota, saying: "Sony believes it needs PC technology and expertise for the time when audio-visual products and PCs merge as multimedia products."

Financial Times, June 4, 1998.

'Info-Vikings' threaten firms ignorant of the "true value of their brain power" - The Economist

Skandia is Sweden's biggest financial services group. Leif Edvinsson is its Director of Intellectual Capital and argues that "just as the long boat carried Vikings across seas and up rivers - allowing them to sack unsuspecting rivers - the Internet is bringing dangerous new invaders into formerly secure markets".

The Economist, June 6, 1998.

Millennium bug fixer in fees row - The Mail on Sunday

The man who set up Taskforce 2000 defended himself against claims that he charged exorbitant fees. Robin Guenier told The Mail on Sunday: "Most consultants charge £150 an hour - I take half that. My fee was agreed in open competition."

Mail on Sunday, June 7, 1998.

"Key sectors facing 2000 with confidence" - The Mail on Sunday

According to a special investigation by the Mail on Sunday's Rachel Oldroyd and Simon Fluendy large swathes of British industry face the millennium with no computing worries. The authors of the piece found telecom firms, utilities, finance, and even the NHS surprisingly ready and able to deal with the millennium bug.

The Mail on Sunday, June 7, 1998.

Britain and America go to 'cyber' war - Sunday Times

According to Matthew Campbell, in the Sunday Times, Britain and America are: "Staging a secret 'information warfare' exercise in London later this month" - to test the ability of hackers to bring down governments and strike at military installations.

The Sunday Times, June 7, 1998.