Friday 17 September: VNU Newswire's roundup of the IT news from the national and international press.
The Financial Times writes that the government will announce today that existing television signals are likely to be turned off by 2010 bringing an end to analogue TV. However, Chris Smith, the culture secretary, will insist that old style sets will not be redundant until 95 per cent of people have access to digital equipment.
The Daily Telegraph reports that BG Transco will double the number of service engineers on call over the New Year period to cope with potential computer failures resulting from the millennium bug. BG's Transco is responsible for Britain's main pipeline system. BG has spent more than £50 million over the last two years to overhaul systems to ensure that its computers do not crash.
Lastminute.com plans to float in the first half of next year and will appoint Morgan Stanley Dean Witter as adviser reports the Financial Times. Lastminute.com, which offers last minute deals over the Internet in the UK and France, expects revenue of about $10 million (£6.2 million) this year. In the US, all the Internet IPOs Morgan Stanley has taken on are trading above their price on flotation.
The San Jose Mercury writes that online auctioneers Ebay head the top of a list of "e-tailers" according to the National Retail Federation (NRF). Amazon.com came in second on the list of 100 best selling Internet retailers, with Dell.com, Buy.com and OnSale.com also in the top five. Web sites offering financial services, automobiles or travel services were excluded from the Top 100 list.
The value of business to business ecommerce conducted in the US will soar to approximately $1.5 trillion by 2004 from an estimated $114 billion this year, reports the Wall Street Journal. A study released by Goldman Sachs reveals corporate IT managers and financial officers are increasingly becoming leaders of implementing business to business software and infrastructure.
Business to business ecommerce is also seen being driven by small businesses' use of the Internet as a medium for marketing, distribution and commerce, the paper reports.
Warren Buffett's company Berkshire Hathaway has invested in the ecommerce industry, writes the Wall Street Journal. The famed investor has at times ridiculed the Internet investment boom, but last year invested in First Data, the dominant provider of back office processing to credit card issuers. Berkshire bought three million shares of First Data in the second quarter of 1998 and today the investment would be valued at about $130 million
IBM and Technical University of Munich team demonstrate how Shor's algorithm, which can't be cracked by conventional computers, can be solved quickly with quantum computing
Hubble Space Telescope finds superflares from young red dwarfs could strip away planetary atmosphere
Younger stars are 100 to 1,000 times more energetic than when they're older
Two of the big four supermarkets will use the system to control sales of restricted products
PUBG news and updates: November's Update #23 to bring new Skorpion pistol and changes to blue zone visibility
Genuinely useful side-arm coming to PUBG in Update #23