Network: Bytes

ONLINE SHOPPING has finally caught on in Britain, according to the Which? Online 1999 Internet report Are You Being Served? Growth of an E-nation.

One-tenth of Net users described themselves as regular online shoppers, and the volume of online trade has doubled since the previous year.

Computer hardware and software - the main purchases in recent years - have been overtaken by books (16 per cent of all transactions) and flights and holidays (13 per cent).

The report noted that although many people still have qualms about buying online, 58 per cent of those online for more than two years have purchased over the Internet, as have a quarter of those who have gone online within the last year.

Almost 40 per cent of British users have been connected in the last year, bringing the total to about 10 million - an increase of 50 per cent from last year. Three-quarters of British users are online for five hours or less a week, during which time they visit an average of 13 sites.

However, traditional worries about the Internet remain unchanged. Pornography, morality and fraud still concern 56 per cent of users. Three-quarters of parents interviewed said that they would not let their children use the Net unsupervised, and the same number of respondents felt that Internet regulation was needed - figures that are unchanged from last year.

THE US government last week reversed its policies on the export of data encryption technology, when President Bill Clinton relaxed government controls.

Under new proposed rules, the government is to allow companies to export their strongest software without an individual licence for each customer, as is currently required. Only one licence will be needed, and companies will help the government to track sales by telling it which retailers it has sold to. It will still be illegal to export encryption products to hostile countries such as Libya and Iraq.

Federal law enforcement and national security organisations have argued that banning the export of strong encryption is necessary to protect national interests.

The Attorney General, Janet Reno, conceded that the liberalisation "will result in greater availability of encryption, which will mean that more terrorists and criminals will use encryption". She added: "We must deal responsibly with that result by attempting to assist law enforcement in its efforts to protect the public safety."

A coalition of technology, business and civil rights groups has taken the line that the Internet needs strong encryption for legitimate uses and that existing legislation has succeeded only in shutting America out of a growing international market.

Various spokesmen welcomed the White House proposals, but cautioned that the shift was aimed at companies rather than individuals, and that the government was still intent on securing legal control of the keys that unlock private messages.

VIRGIN ENTERTAINMENT last week announced that it is launching a service, Virgin JamCast (http://www.jamcast. com/), to allow consumers to download music and games to PCs over the Internet or to other devices such as digital TV set-top boxes.

Virgin has formed a partnership with Wavo, a digital media services provider, whose Internet Protocol multi-casting technology will be used to deliver a weekly collection of files to those who request the service, with content dependent on their interests. The service is more like the old push technology than traditional streaming in that it is delivered to a user's hard disk, rather than having to be listened to in real time. The music, a mix of samples and limited-play versions, will be available in a variety of formats which can be purchased if required.

PALM COMPUTING, the manufacturer of top-selling handheld computers, is to be sold off by the owner, 3Com, which plans to float its Palm division by the end of this year or early next year. Twenty per cent of shares will be released and the remainder distributed to 3Com shareholders.

Although Palm has been successful, with sales of $570m in this financial year, it is peripheral to 3Com's central networking business.

"We think [this announcement] signals the creation of two leaderships focused on separate and complementary businesses," said Eric Benhamou, 3Com chairman and CEO, adding that the spin-off will let 3Com focus on networking and give Palm the management and resources it needs for the popular handheld device to continue to thrive.

He also said the move would free Palm Computing to explore ways of making money other than by selling hardware: licensing of operating systems, computing systems for businesses, wireless data services and Web services were among the areas he identified.

Arts and Entertainment
booksThe Withnail and I creator, has a new theory about killer's identity
Arts and Entertainment
tvDick Clement and Ian La Frenais are back for the first time in a decade
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment

ebooksNow available in paperback
Arts and Entertainment

ebooks
Arts and Entertainment
The Clangers: 1969-1974
tv
Arts and Entertainment
Rocky road: Dwayne Johnson and Carla Gugino play an estranged husband and wife in 'San Andreas'
film review
Arts and Entertainment
Nicole Kidman plays Grace Kelly in the film, which was criticised by Monaco’s royal family

film
Arts and Entertainment
Emilia Clarke could have been Anastasia Steele in Fifty Shades of Grey but passed it up because of the nude scenes

film
Arts and Entertainment
A$AP Rocky and Rita Ora pictured together in 2012

music
Arts and Entertainment
A case for Mulder and Scully? David Duchovny and Gillian Anderson in ‘The X-Files’

TV
Arts and Entertainment
Impressions of the Creative Community Courtyard within d3. The development is designed to 'inspire emerging designers and artists, and attract visitors'

architecture
Arts and Entertainment
Performers drink tea at the Glastonbury festival in 2010

GlastonburyWI to make debut appearance at Somerset festival

Arts and Entertainment
Lena Headey as Cersei Lannister

TV reviewIt has taken seven episodes for Game of Thrones season five to hit its stride

Arts and Entertainment
Jesuthasan Antonythasan as Dheepan

FilmPalme d'Or goes to radical and astonishing film that turns conventional thinking about immigrants on its head

Arts and Entertainment
Måns Zelmerlöw performing

Eurovision
Arts and Entertainment
Graham Norton was back in the commentating seat for Eurovision 2015

Eurovision
Arts and Entertainment
Richard Hammond, Jeremy Clarkson and James May on stage

TV
Arts and Entertainment
The light stuff: Britt Robertson and George Clooney in ‘Tomorrowland: a World Beyond’
film review
Arts and Entertainment
Reawakening: can Jon Hamm’s Don Draper find enlightenment in the final ‘Mad Men’?
tv reviewNot quite, but it's an enlightening finale for Don Draper spoiler alert
Arts and Entertainment
Breakfast Show’s Nick Grimshaw

Radio
Arts and Entertainment

Eurovision
Arts and Entertainment
'Youth' cast members Paul Dano, Jane Fonda, Harvey Keitel, Rachel Weisz, and Michael Caine pose for photographers at Cannes Film Festival
film
Arts and Entertainment
Adam West as Batman and Burt Ward and Robin in the 1960s Batman TV show

Comics
Arts and Entertainment
I am flute: Azeem Ward and his now-famous instrument
music
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

ES Rentals

    Independent Dating
    and  

    By clicking 'Search' you
    are agreeing to our
    Terms of Use.

    On your feet! Spending at least two hours a day standing reduces the risk of heart attacks, cancer and diabetes, according to new research

    On your feet!

    Spending half the day standing 'reduces risk of heart attacks and cancer'
    Liverpool close in on Milner signing

    Liverpool close in on Milner signing

    Reds baulk at Christian Benteke £32.5m release clause
    With scores of surgeries closing, what hope is there for the David Cameron's promise of 5,000 more GPs and a 24/7 NHS?

    The big NHS question

    Why are there so few new GPs when so many want to study medicine?
    Big knickers are back: Thongs ain't what they used to be

    Thongs ain't what they used to be

    Big knickers are back
    Thurston Moore interview

    Thurston Moore interview

    On living in London, Sonic Youth and musical memoirs
    In full bloom

    In full bloom

    Floral print womenswear
    From leading man to Elephant Man, Bradley Cooper is terrific

    From leading man to Elephant Man

    Bradley Cooper is terrific
    In this the person to restore our trust in the banks?

    In this the person to restore our trust in the banks?

    Dame Colette Bowe - interview
    When do the creative juices dry up?

    When do the creative juices dry up?

    David Lodge thinks he knows
    The 'Cher moment' happening across fashion just now

    Fashion's Cher moment

    Ageing beauty will always be more classy than all that booty
    Thousands of teenage girls enduring debilitating illnesses after routine school cancer vaccination

    Health fears over school cancer jab

    Shock new Freedom of Information figures show how thousands of girls have suffered serious symptoms after routine HPV injection
    Fifa President Sepp Blatter warns his opponents: 'I forgive everyone, but I don't forget'

    'I forgive everyone, but I don't forget'

    Fifa president Sepp Blatter issues defiant warning to opponents
    Extreme summer temperatures will soon cause deaths of up to 1,700 more Britons a year, says government report

    Weather warning

    Extreme summer temperatures will soon cause deaths of up to 1,700 more Britons a year, says government report
    LSD: Speaking to volunteer users of the drug as trials get underway to see if it cures depression and addiction

    High hopes for LSD

    Meet the volunteer users helping to see if it cures depression and addiction
    German soldier who died fighting for UK in Battle of Waterloo should be removed from museum display and given dignified funeral, say historians

    Saving Private Brandt

    A Belgian museum's display of the skeleton of a soldier killed at Waterloo prompts calls for him to be given a dignified funeral