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Web-only Exclusives
November 30, 2000

From Our Correspondent: Hirohito and the War
A conversation with biographer Herbert Bix

From Our Correspondent: A Rough Road Ahead
Bad news for the Philippines - and some others

From Our Correspondent: Making Enemies
Indonesia needs friends. So why is it picking fights?

AsiaweekTimeAsia NowAsiaweek technology


Asiaweek Pictures

FEBRUARY 25, 2000 VOL. 26 NO. 7

Cutting Edge
The iBook Gets Tough
By STUART WHITMORE

If you like Apple's iBook laptop, but think its candy-colored case clashes with your macho image, then how about one in gun-metal gray? The $1,799 iBook Special Edition has a faster, 366 MHz processor, a bigger hard drive and double the memory of previous models. But most strikingly the new model bins the tangerine and blueberry trimmings in favor of sleek graphite. The laptop was unveiled at the Tokyo Macworld expo, where Apple CEO Steve Jobs also announced a speed boost for the company's more businesslike PowerBooks. With its G3 processor now clocking 500 MHz, Jobs claims the PowerBook is the fastest notebook ever. Apple's maverick leader had still better news for his Japanese audience. The next version of the Mac operating system, OS X, will come with the largest ever Japanese font set with 17,000 characters. Presumably including plenty of manly terms like samurai.

    ALSO IN ASIAWEEK
Cover Story: Show Me the Stock Options!
Armed with stock options and capital, recruiters are stalking rare high-tech talent

Business Buzz
Japan: Land of the rising Internet ad spend

  RELATED STORIES
Gripe, Gripe, Gripe
Asia's silent consumers get a chance to vent

Cellphone Headsets Go Truly Hands-Free
By mid-year Ericsson will debut a headset that uses radio waves to transmit signals wirelessly to and from a plug-in for your phone

New Medium, New Rules
China takes a hard line on Internet discourse

Cellphones That Know the Score
SK Telecom, one of Korea's largest mobile carriers, is joining up with Japan's NTT DoCoMo in an attempt to bring broadband Internet access to your cellphone

Assif Online: In Debt?
Just make yourself a dotcom

Asiaweek Technology Home

Alternative Thinking
If the computer monitor strains your eyes and all that typing is giving you RSI, log on one last time and head for www.altermedic. com or www.greaterchinaherbs.com. Both sites offer a wealth of information on alternative Chinese medicine, therapies for all that ails you, encyclopedias of herbal remedies and even online consultation with experts via e-mail or video chat-rooms. AlterMedic is in Chinese only (for now, Japanese and English versions are pending) while GreaterChinaHerbs has both English- and Chinese-language pages.

Windows Me, Baby
On February 17, Microsoft releases Windows 2000. So is it time to upgrade your home PC again? No. Logic may dictate that 2000 comes after 98 and 95, but Bill Gates dictates otherwise. Windows 2000 is actually the successor to NT 4.0, Microsoft's robust business operating system. The update to Windows 98 will go by the name Windows Millennium Edition and is not due until the summer. Adding to the confusion is the fact that Microsoft publicly declared that after Windows 98 it would hack off that branch of the family tree and base all new versions of Windows on NT. Confused yet? In an effort to keep things user-friendly, Microsoft is dubbing Millennium Edition "Windows Me." Where do we go from there? Windows You?

Frame It, Film It, Print It
So this is what they mean by backwards-compatibility. Sony has taken a state-of-the-art digital video camera and turned it into . . . a Polaroid-style instant snapper. The DCR-TRV820 is the first camcorder to come with a built-in color printer, so you can make instant paper copies of what's going on in the viewfinder. Available in May, the $1,300 device produces business-card sized prints from a freeze-framed piece of home-movie action. Or you can make copies of a still image - which can be taken with the camcorder itself or transferred over from any Sony digital camera using one of the company's purple Memory Sticks. Users can print normal photos (it costs $20 for 40 sheets and two ribbons of ink) or use special adhesive paper to create sticker pictures, like those you get from the booths in shopping malls. The camera even comes with a choice of digital borders to frame your image, or you can create your own.

e-mail: stuart_whitmore@asiaweek.com

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