Tech Talk

July 13, 1998

July 20, 1998

July 24, 1998


Tech Week

Juno Online Services, the world's second largest online service after America Online, has announced the launch of two new service levels for subscribers. Under the new plan, subscribers will be able to choose between three different levels of service, raging from basic e-mail to full Internet access. Juno Gold will supplement the features of Juno's free basic e-mail service by adding the ability to send and receive file attachments, including pictures, word-processor documents and other nontext-based files. Juno Web, which includes all the features of Juno Gold, also allows the subscriber to explore the World Wide Web using a standard Web browser such as Microsoft's Internet Explorer or Netscape's Navigator. The new packages are structured so that users easily can upgrade their service at any time, permitting a gradual migration to the Internet without significant modifications to the service's already-familiar interface. Familiarity, says Charles Ardai, Juno's president, is important to many Juno subscribers. "Because of the Internet's explosive growth and huge impact, we sometimes forget that it is a relatively new phenomenon and remains an unexplored universe for roughly 80 percent of all Americans," Ardai said. "Juno's 5.5 million subscribers represent a community that has taken its first step onto the Internet. Now they can 'graduate' to broader Internet services without having to change their e-mail address, learn how to use a new interface, or give up Juno's exceptional reliability and ease of use." Juno will provide its Web access though a network of more than 1,200 gateways nationwide. The End of Spam? San Francisco-based Bright Light Technologies has announced it will release a beta version of the first real solution for ending spam. The new start-up, which already has the support of major software companies and Internet Service Providers, has secured $5.5 million in funding from venture capitalists including Andy Bechtolsheim, co-founder of Sun Microsystems, and Ben Rosen, chairman of Compaq Computer. The company's new product, called Bright Mail, will use software to leverage the combined resources of all of its customers, an approach that means the more customers subscribe to Bright Light's services, the more powerful the service becomes. "Unsolicited bulk e-mail threatens to undermine the value of e-mail as a business and personal communications tool," said Phil Schacter, senior analyst with the Burton Group. "Bright Light is the first company to respond to the spam threat with rapid recognition, analysis and rules generation. Due to the economic motivation behind most spam, it will evolve faster than current static countermeasures can keep pace. The industry needs to treat this problem like the mutating virus that it is." So far, ISP and Web-based electronic messaging providers including AT&T WorldNet Service, Earthlink Network and Concentric Network are singing Bright Mail's praises. Steve Dougherty, Earthlink's director of Internet operations, saw the service's potential early on. "Spam costs ISPs millions of dollars a month in bandwidth, customer service and manpower and accounts for a significant portion of end-users' monthly bills," Dougherty said. "EarthLink has declared war on spam, and Bright Mail will help us to further control it." Bright Mail monitors spam across the Internet and creates new rules in real time, enabling it to stop many spam attacks even as they occur. Bright Light will maintain a large network of e-mail addresses specifically established for the purpose of receiving spam. By monitoring these address, Bright Mail can offer an effective early warning system for detecting incoming spam. As soon as a spammed message is detected, Bright Mail delivers the information to a "Spam Wall" located at each customer's location. Spam Wall is a component of Bright Mail's proprietary filtering engine for identifying and filtering spam mail.


July 13, 1998

July 20, 1998

July 24, 1998