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September 12, 1995

MINIGRAMS EXTRA

By CBR Staff Writer

With its $300m share exchange deal to acquire Xylogics Inc, Bay Networks Inc not only picks up a key supplier, but also lands a company that is also a main OEM supplier of remote access products to arch-rival of Bay, Cabletron Systems Inc, which must now either start developing on its own account or find a Xylogics competitor (if there is one) to buy; also embarrassed is Chipcom Corp, in process of being acquired by 3Com Corp, which has just announced fruits of a joint development with Xylogics, and will take the Remote Annex server OEM.

Tony Denison, previously chief executive and one of the founders of VisionWare Ltd, now swallowed up by Santa Cruz Operation Inc, has turned up at Ashmount Research Ltd, a London, UK-based developer of off-line conferencing and navigation software for on-line services such as CompuServe, Delphi and CIX, where he will be chairman; he also provided second round funding for a new Internet conferencing product from Ashmount due this quarter.

Jakarta-based unit of NEC Corp, PT NEC Nusantara, has submitted a bid to supply equipment for 400,000 telephone lines in eastern Indonesia and said it intends to tender for four other such contracts: NEC, one of three permitted suppliers in Indonesia since 1992, said it would compete against AT&T Corp and Siemens AG for a contract with Bukaka Singtel International, and would bid for four other contracts under which Indonesia allows foreign operators to take over existing services and provide another 2m lines.

Madrid-based Siemens SA, the Spanish unit of Siemens AG, has won the equivalent of a $39.8m contract to supply telecommunications equipment to Airtel, the consortium that is due to start competing with Telefonica de Espana SA in the cellular market toward the end of this year: Siemens will invest some $23.9m and the project will create 130 jobs.

Convex Computer Corp and Hewlett-Packard Co have launched a joint Co-operative Technology Centre at Hewlett’s European headquarters in Bblingen, Germany: Hewlett-Packard said that the centre will provide consulting and technical services for customers of Convex’s Precision Architecture RISC-based Exemplar scalable parallel processor family.

GemStone Systems Inc and Ascent Logic Corp have inked a three-year, $3.8m reseller pact; Ascent is to sell GemStone’s Smalltalk application server technology (it does not consider itself an object database firm any longer) as the repository for a new generation of its business process re-engineering tools.

Quarterdeck Corp president and chief executive Gaston Bastiaens did very well to keep a straight face as he told journalists in London that customers would not be using the company’s WebPhone to save money on long distance calls, adding that telephone companies – which may have to restructure their tariffs completely – will be the winners in the long run as people pay them for their pipes: Quarterdeck is positioning the WebPhone, which the company claims offers full duplex telephony over the Internet (CI No 2,741), as an extension of chat fora on the Internet, because apparently there are potential legal issues that needed to be resolved with the phone companies, though nobody was quite sure what they are; Bastiaens also predicted that the World Wide Web would die as a communications tool if users were prevented from using speech; the WebPhone will be under $50 and ú50 when it is released in the US and the UK respectively next month.

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Pleasantly unfamiliar to have the industry led by a company that almost no-one seems to hate and most people admire for the right reasons rather than simply because it is successful: Wall Street Journal staffer Walter Mossberg concludes his review of Hewlett-Packard Co’s new Pavilion family of home computers all in all, I can recommend the H-P Pavilion as a very good computer from a very good company.

Oracle Corp has joined OpenDoc development shop Component Integration Labs Inc, while the latter has agreed exchanged membership with Japan’s IntelligentPad

Consortium.

Data General Corp will announce the promised Intel Corp iAPX-86 implementation of its 64-bit DG-UX Unix at Unix Expo, along with a new release for its 88000-based AViiONs.

Lebanon has inaugurated a 140 mile undersea fibre-optic telephone cable linking it to Cyprus, with a capacity for 7,560 telephone lines, which will also be used by Syria: Lebanon and Cyprus will each use 42% of the lines and Syria will use 16%; during the first phase 1,890 telephone lines will be operated.

Having remained in place through the reorganisation, David Tory is resigning as Open Software Foundation president and chief executive and will leave the organisation on September 15; the board meets the previous day at IBM Corp offices in Raleigh, North Carolina to decide if Tory – whose services come high for a non-profit body ($1.6m a year is bruited) – should be replaced, and if so, who it ought to woo.

Bedford, Massachusetts-based Progress Software Corp says Version 8 of its Application and Development Environment will be released probably late October, early November.

Computers have wreaked terrible havoc with newspaper design, and far too many things are done not because they look good but because they can be done now that the constraints of hot metal are history, and publishers still rate style way ahead of substance, and instead of introducing changes subtly over an extended period, insist on alerting the world that the title is in deep trouble by insisting on a Big Bang root and branch redesign: reviewing the unbelievably fussily redesigned Observer, Britain’s oldest Sunday paper in the UK Press Gazette, Michael Crozier notes that the main headline face has been squeezed to 97%, turning the name of Boeing Co’s latest airliner, the 777, into a wierd graphic symbol; it looks dreadful too, but what can you expect of a face called Bureau Grot?

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