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September 24, 1995

R.I. to get free text access
to World Wide Web

By Timothy C. Barmann

The Ocean State Free-Net, the state's public access computer network, will add a feature to give users limited access to the Internet's World Wide Web.

Beginning Wednesday, the Free-Net will add a program called Lynx, which displays a text-only view of "home pages" on the Web.

Free-Net Steering Committee vice president Howard Boksenbaum said the Lynx browser will be put on-line for a two-week trial. "We want to make sure we have all the bugs out of it," he said. After any problems are corrected, it will become a regular feature of the Free-Net, he said.

No special software is required to use the program.

Lynx will join a palette of features the Free-Net already offers at no charge. Among them are Internet e-mail, access to CLAN, the state's library network, and access to the U. S. Government Printing Office, which electronically distributes the Federal Register and the Congressional Record.

To connect to the Free-Net, only the most basic computer system with communications software and a modem is needed. For a recording of detailed connect instructions, call 277-2728, ext. 500. Live help is available at that number from 1 to 3 p.m. weekdays.

Learn by e-mail

A free class for beginners on learning how to use the Internet is being offered by e-mail.

The 34-lesson course, which begins a week from today, will cover the basic resources and tools of the Internet.

It is oriented toward those who have IBM-compatible computers running Windows, but all users will benefit from the course, an announcement says. To participate, students must have e-mail capability.

The e-mail course is being offered by Robert Behrens of MJ & RB Computing of Bellingham, Mass.

To register, send an e-mail message to MJRB-TRAINING-REQUEST@WORLD.STD.COM. Leave the subject blank. In the body of the message, type "subscribe" (without the quotes).

You will receive an acknowledgement of your registration and more information. Registrations must be received by Saturday.

Technology seminar

CompUtopia, a Warwick computer reseller and Internet provider for businesses, is holding a free technology seminar, "Connecting your Business to the Internet," on Friday at the Providence Marriott Hotel.

It will include presentations by vendors from Microsoft, Hewlett-Packard, MCI, Tele Network Services and Bay Networks.

The seminar runs from 9 to 11 a.m., with break-out sessions afterwards. Registration begins at 8:30 a.m. Seating is limited. Reserve a space by calling Joe Aquilante at 732-5588 or send e-mail to joe@computopia.com.

La Salle Web site

La Salle Academy, a Providence Catholic high school, has a new World Wide Web site at http://www.loa.com/lasalle.

It has information about the school, which is celebrating its 125th anniversary this year, as well as a variety of educational links to other Web sites.

The site will also offer student and faculty Web pages.

For more information about the La Salle Web site, contact David A. Laroche, La Salle Academy, 612 Academy Ave., Providence, RI 02908. By e-mail: dlaroche@loa.com.

Free 'Money'

Microsoft is giving away Money. Money for Windows 95, that is. The personal finance software can be downloaded for free until Oct. 31 on Microsoft's World Wide Web site and on the Microsoft Network. It's also available on disk or CD-ROM for a $9.95 handling charge.

Why give it away? The software giant says in a news release that it's hoping to "attract the 70 percent of households with computers that do not currently use personal finance software."

The retail price for the program after Nov. 1 will be about $35.

The software will allow customers of 17 banks, including Rhode Island Hospital Trust National Bank, to bank at home online.

(This service will be available locally by the end of October or beginning of September, and will work with Intuit's Quicken personal finance software as well, said Karen Schwartzman, spokeswoman for Bank of Boston, Hospital Trust's parent company.)

Money for Windows 95 requires a 386 DX or higher processor and Windows 95 operating system with at least 4 megabytes of RAM. For online banking, a 2,400 bps modem or higher is required.

The software is available on the Web at http://www.microsoft.com/MSHOME/. On the Microsoft Network, go to the Money forum. It will take about 40 minutes to download the 3 1/2 -megabyte file with a 14,400 bps modem.

To order by phone, call (800) 508-8458.

Timothy C. Barmann is a Journal-Bulletin staff photographer. His column runs every other Sunday on the On Line page. Send him comments via e-mail at tim@cybertalk.com or U.S. mail, c/o the Journal-Bulletin, 75 Fountain St., Providence, R.I. 02902.