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Marc Ambasna-Jones's Diary

Written by Marc Ambasna Jones, Contributor

Suddenly the Internet has been recognised as a respected news medium. The over-hyped court battle over Louise Woodward, who we shouldn't forget is a young woman found guilty of the manslaughter of a baby, found its way onto the Internet in an official capacity today. Judge Zobbel announced his verdict on the Lawyers Weekly Web site that he was reducing the second degree murder conviction to manslaughter etc etc.

Was there a winner? No not really. Are there any lessons to be learned? Well, I was not surprised to hear that the sale of remote controlled video cameras had risen sharply, bought by anxious parents employing nannies. Lessons? Well, yes. Firstly don't follow the US system of live courtroom television. Secondly, the Internet has its uses, especially for judges wanting to overturn jury decisions without having to face the cameras.

The Internet also had another use today - the live link-up to Apple's press conference in Cupertino. Well almost. I'm sure it worked just fine if you realised that the reason why you couldn't get it to work was because someone had unplugged the phone line from your modem. Anyway, I had better things to do such, as watch Eastenders live at Lake Como.


So my predictions were correct - not that it was difficult to foresee - that Apple has decided to sell direct. And what about Steve Jobs telling Dell to watch out! I bet Michael Dell's really worried. So after digesting this amusing but slightly lacklustre piece of information, I headed to Soho in central London to sit in a swanky wine bar and meet various industry stalwarts. After a few drinks I met-up with TDK who bought a few more drinks and didn't talk about PC Cards once!

I then bumped into an old boss. He's a film and TV producer and I hadn't seen him for ten years. Working in IT has come a long way when someone in the film industry takes an interest in what you are doing. The normal party thing where someone hears you work in IT and badgers you endlessly about some technical problem they have may be a thing of the past then? Or maybe I was just being humoured. After a few glasses it's difficult to judge that one.


Good start to the day. Crystal Palace sign Juventus striker Michele Padovano.

Apple also claims a good start with its online store selling $500,000 worth of equipment in the first 12 hours. But UK 'Appleites' are not than convinced that Apple has made a sensible move or that all the press conference fuss was worth the news.

I spoke to the marketing manager of Umax distributor IMC and he slammed Apple's event as "peculiar", saying that it seemed to be missing something major. Perhaps Apple had intended to announce some kind of takeover by Oracle perhaps, but there was a last minute glitch in the deal. More likely is that Apple was dangling carrots and whipping up a media storm to make the news more important than perhaps it really is.

The Apple-loving bloke in my office, sporting a recently-acquired Power Mac decided to try and look-up the Apple Web site to take a gander at the online shop. But alas, he continues to have Internet access trouble with his BT LineOne package.

"Did it crash again Gary?" I asked.

"Yes, just for the fifth time today," he replied.

"And did you have to reboot the whole system?"

The sound of the start-up music and a faint mumbling answered my question.


Spent the day at London Zoo with my son. Felt sorry for the animals. It was cold outside. Felt hypocritical having paid the entrance fee. My son enjoyed it though and we had right lovely lunch.


More Palace news. Croydon-based computer recruitment company owner Marc Goldberg buys 10 per cent of chairman Ron Noades' shares with a further option to buy the club next year for £30 million. Who says there isn't money in computer recruitment?

Heard the news that storage firm Micropolis had gone bust and was a little surprised - thought there was always room for storage.

Also smirked at Dell calling Jobs "silly" over the direct selling jibes thing. I hope this continues. There's nothing quite like a good ding-dong between two big industry names. Let's hope it gets really dirty.

On that note, I've shut down the PC and I'm heading home for an evening of Friends, Shooting Stars and Frasier. Oh and a bottle of wine.

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