- By Judi Hasson
- Oct 23, 2000
While waiting for Democratic vice presidential candidate Joe Lieberman
to join them in a conference call Oct. 17, a group of high-tech executives
apparently didn't realize that reporters were on the line too. One of the
techies began to grumble that Democratic presidential candidate Al Gore
has been getting a bum rap about claiming to have "invented" the Internet.
Gore, in fact, merely takes credit for freeing up R&D money to help
develop cyberspace, not the actual invention that has sparked the digital
"Can't they just drop it?" asked high-tech guru Vinton Cerf,
one of the principals on the line and one of the guys responsible for a
little thing called TCP/IP. A little while later, Cerf mentioned that he'd
been asked if he was running for president and replied that he was "the
other guy who invented the Internet."
Seen and heard
As the director of the President's Task Force on Employment of Adults
with Disabilities, Rebecca Ogle is an outspoken advocate for the disabled.
Just last week, she was invited to speak at an Agriculture Department conference
on how technology can be used to help disabled people.
Ogle wheeled to a podium that towered over her as she sat at her wheelchair.
"Are there any engineers here?" Ogle asked. "When I come back next time
I want a podium I can sit behind and still be seen." Then, parked beside
the podium, she delivered an address on the importance of accommodating
people with disabilities.
Getting personal at work
A growing number of workers are using the Internet for personal business
during their workday, according to a study by
@plan Inc.'s Institute for Online Commerce. More than 70 percent of the
1,000 people surveyed said they sent e-mail for personal reasons and 57
percent said they use the Internet at work for personal research.
However, 70 percent also said the Internet has made it easier to work
from home, and 43 percent said they regularly check e-mail when on vacation.
"Our once-accepted definitions of a regular business day and personal
time are now blurred," said Mark Wright, president and CEO of the Connecticut-based
firm. "The Internet and new technologies are linking people to their jobs
for much longer hours, and so there is an apparent trade-off with may workers.
People may feel if they work from home and check e-mails on vacation, they
can occasionally log on from the cubicle to shop or browse the Web."
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