Continuing coverage of recent WT stories
The state of Maryland launched a campaign to name the large biotechnology community in Maryland (WT, April 25). The Maryland Bioscience Alliance Steering Committee selected "BioCapital" on April 24, however, a slogan is yet to be determined. Also, Synergistic Designs in San Francisco is currently putting together the Maryland/D.C. FusionScape, a map of bioscience companies located in the region. As of now, 11 bioscience companies have already signed on as featured companies of BioCapital. NationsBank has put in an initial bid to become a co-sponsor of the two-year campaign. Companies have until May 31 to bid for a position on the map.
Virtual Urban Planning
Another Internet community (WT Oct. 12) has been created: America Online's "Virtual Places." The service is offered by GNN, a subsidiary of the Vienna, Va., on-line content provider. Virtual Places offers people the ability to watch "Melrose Place" or "Seinfeld" together from a "cyberden." Others may participate in a political debate. Users can chat with each other or go on a tour of the Web. Virtual Places is client/server software that is designed to bring people together in live interactive activities.
InterFed Acquired by Digital Commerce Corp.
InterFed Group Inc., Vienna, Va., publisher of the popular Web site FedCenter (WT, April 11), has been acquired by Digital Commerce Corp., Fairfax, Va.
David J. Beers, founder of InterFed, will become president of the Web development subsidiary. FedCenter, a resource for the information technology community that lists information from General Services Administration prices to seminar schedules, is now receiving more than 100,000 hits a day. High-tech companies such as IBM, Intel, Lotus and Sybase all have a presence on the site, which can be found at http://www.fedcenter.com.
Federal Sources Snags a New State and Local Guru
The revolving door between government and industry has swung open yet again (WT, April 25). John Kost, the colorful and controversial chief information officer for the state of Michigan has joined Federal Sources, a market research and consulting firm in McLean, Va. Effective July 1, Kost will start his new corporate role as vice president for State and Local Consulting.
Clinton's Science Cuts Are Deeper Than Expected
President Bill Clinton's six-year spending plan (WT, May 15) would cut non-defense science programs by 24.5 percent, slightly more than the 24.4 percent cut proposed by House Republicans, says the Washington-based American Association for the Advancement of Science.
The association first estimated the Clinton plan would cut science spending by 11.7 percent, but upped the cuts after calculations by the Congressional Budget Office showed that extra cuts would be needed to meet Clinton's goal of balancing the government's budget by 2002. Clinton's budget plan would cut spending from $34.3 billion in 1995 to $25.9 billion in 2002. The Republican plan sets science spending in 2002 at $25.9 billion.
Security Issues Tarnish Java's Image
Internet users are being warned that Java applets (WT Dec. 21) could offer an easy point of entry for people trying to break into their computer systems. So-called "hostile applets" have the potential to crash a system or extract confidential data without the user knowing. Some of these hostile applets allegedly could prompt users to enter a new login name and password at a "safe" site, while in reality the applet is stealing access information and transmitting it to unauthorized users. The Computer Emergency Response Team recommends disabling Java in Netscape Navigator and not using Sun's HotJava browser to view insecure Web sites until the vendors distribute patches.