A journey through the Internet is a little like the early voyages of exploration. Long periods of searching and hopeful travelling are filled with bursts of excitement if something fruitful comes into view. An online journal dedicated to H M S Beagle could provide the same thrill for medical buffs surfing on the Web. Beagle, travelled the whole world, collecting data which led to the publication of Charles Darwin's Origin of Species. While BioMedNet's new site at http://hmsbeagle.com cannot promise something as radical as the Origin of Species , it provides a useful information chart on medical issues on the Web.
The links between cyberspace and outer space are numerous but the affinity is most apparent at Web sites dedicated to the Hubble Space Telescope.
Recently, Hubble has been the subject of a second repair mission and live pictures from space walks can be found on NASA's shuttle Web site at: http://shuttle.nasa.gov. The site is chalking up more than 100,000 hits per day, so it may be a little crowded. The video technology requires no extra software and it should be possible to get a look at what is going on 600 km over our heads.
A new programme has been developed by IBM that can help people browse the Web more efficiently. It works alongside other Web browsers, such as Netscape and is free. The software goes by the name Web Browser Intelligence or WBI- pronounced Webby. Webby tests the speed of links between sites and works out the fastest way to get at a page. It even remembers all the pages you have visited and allows you to search through them for pages you didn't want to read at first but now want to read. It can be downloaded from http://www. almaden.ibm.com/ cs/user/wbi. At the moment, the software only works with Windows 95, Windows NT and IBM's own operating system OS/2.
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