Windows Show diary
Monday 04 March 1996
However, the three-day event did show off some of the more stunning capabilities of Microsoft's latest operating system. Many of the vendors even used technology to do so - which is unusual because most computer shows rely on a sprinkling of glamorous women with pearly grins telling you about the latest 32-bit accountancy kit.
Getting the audience's attention is of course the be-all-and-end-all of a successful show and Microsoft wasted no time in getting its message out loud and clear. So loud, in fact, that on Tuesday morning a press conference was seriously disturbed by the racket coming from the speakers on one of the stands. It was quietened only by the intervention of one of the vendeuses.
IBM was making a noise also, but thankfully it was pleasanter: a pair of Blues Brothers lookalikes sang "I Need You" to draw attention to its OS/2 operating system. Unfortunately for Big Blue, it will take more than a pair of beshaded clones to rescue the platform.
Tuesday morning also saw the launch of BT's mass-market Internet offering. BT Internet is the first to provide a cut-down version of the Net; BT has deemed certain areas of the Internet "unsuitable" and therefore does not allow access. "If a site contains a word that points to illegal content, we will stop access to it," said one official. "For example, cockfighting is illegal in Britain. Access to newsgroups with the word cockfighting is not permitted."
CompuServe, which uses intelligent software and parental education to govern its access, caused a few smiles by getting two of its staff to walk around the show dressed as a stick of broccoli and an aged fisherman. The costumes were to promote a new cybersociety called World's Away, where people can wander around an animated world (online). Currently, if you want to chat online, all you see is your text, but with World's Away, you can see lots of characters or "avatars" and speak to those you want. Martin Turner, CompuServe's general manager for the UK, believes "this is the way online communication is going".
Life & Style blogs
Report finds English children among the unhappiest in world
Anal sex study reveals climate of 'coercion'
The ALS Association doesn't yet know what to do with all this ice bucket challenge money
The science of saturated fat: A big fat surprise about nutrition?
The best gowns on the red carpet of 2014 Venice Film Festival
Exclusive: We share blame for creating 'jihad generation', says Muslim strategist
Robin Williams Emmys tribute led by Billy Crystal criticised for including 'racist' joke about Muslim woman
The Rotherham child abuse scandal is a tale of apologists, misogyny and double standards
Scottish independence TV debate: Pumped-up Alex Salmond bounces back in bruising second round against Alistair Darling
Do you realise just how foolish the UK looks?
Ukip Douglas Carswell defection: Tory MP jumps ship to join Nigel Farage
- 1 Notting Hill Carnival: Woman shares selfie after being ‘punched in face for telling man to stop groping her’
- 2 Joan Rivers: 'Palestinians deserve to be dead'
- 3 Daily Show's Jon Stewart destroys Fox News for its Ferguson coverage
- 4 Botched ice bucket challenge leaves man critically injured after plane drops hundreds of gallons of water
- 5 Friends reunion: Jennifer Anniston, Lisa Kudrow and Courteney Cox perform mini sketch on Jimmy Kimmel Live
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