Log in ....Tribune

Dot.ComLatest in ITFree DownloadsOn hardware

Monday, July 9, 2001

Im‘mobile’ Musharraf

PAKISTANI cellular phone service will not be functional in India for President Pervez Musharraf during his scheduled visit to India, Hindustan Times reported. The reason that the newspaper cited was that the mobile phone operator in Agra does not have in place an international ‘roaming’ agreement that allows a mobile phone user to use his home network during overseas visit. The Pak President and his entourage will have to depend on Escotel, the sole mobile phone service at Agra. The Indian Government is taking a lot of interest in ensuring foolproof mobile coverage as a huge media contingent is also expected at Agra, the daily said.


Post office ATMs

The country’s old-fashioned post offices plan to turn techsavvy soon with state-of-the-art ATMs on their premises for mopping up additional funds, a Reuters report said. The secretary of the Department of Posts, B.N. Som, said that they would soon enter into an alliance with the banks and that the ATMs would soon find a place in the larger post offices. The report said the move would help the postal department mop up additional resources because post offices would collect rent from banks to host the ATMs

Rates slashed

Saudi Arabia has introduced high-speed asymmetric digital subscriber line (ADSL) Internet access services and slashed connection charges to attract more subscribers, Saudi newspapers were quoted in a Reuters report. They said the Saudi Telecommunications Company (STC) will charge a 220 riyal ($59) monthly flat fee for unlimited access as well as a one-time 300-riyal connection fee. The STC also reduced charges for international links between the Saudi network and the WWW by 20 per cent.

Portal on expansion

A B2B portal has been set up to aid the expansion of the Dubai International Airport. The project would be expanded at the cost of Dh 7 billion and would be completed by 2006 A.D. The Khaleej Times reported last week that the Dubai civil aviation ministry had tied up with airportXchange of Malaysia for this. The portal is expecting a revenue of $ 7 million in the first year and $ 20 million in the second, the daily quoted a civil aviation director as saying. The portal will take off with Dh 450 million cargo project for which tenders had already been invited.

Computers and biology

The Bioinformatics Institute, Singapore, will, besides hiring researchers, also train Master’s students, who are computing experts, so that they have working knowledge of biology. The institute’s new head, Gunaretnam Rajagopal, while speaking to The Straits Times said the institute would recruit up to 30 researchers for a start and 100 or more in five years. He explained that the deluge of data from life-sciences research called for new tools to deal with the information overload and said the institute would work on building up a computational IT infrastructure, database and computing power.

Falun Gong surfers

The Chinese government remains on a lookout for anyone accessing the outlawed spiritual movement, Falun Gong, Web sites, The New York Times reported. The Chinese Public Security System has blocked such sites and uses detection software to identify the computer systems and users from where such sites are accessed. Yet this has not put off many off the cult followers, who still search for the possible holes in the electronic wall built by the government. Such cult followers still continue to elude China’s internal security forces, using temporary cell phone numbers, encryption programs and obscure Internet services based overseas to keep the network of followers connected, the newspaper said.