56K Standards Wars Waning? Last week, the companies embroiled in the war for 56 Kbps modem standards reached a tentative agreement on a 56K technology that may become the official standard. This agreement comes faster than we'd expected - in a recent NetBITS article, "Speed Jockeys on the Internet: Flying at 56K," we reported a standard wasn't likely to show up until at least September 1998. However, it now appears the lack of an accepted technology has been hurting major combatants such as 3Com/USRobotics and Lucent Technologies/Rockwell Communications. Early reports suggest the final 56K technology will combine elements of current K56flex and X2 designs. It looks as though the ITU will use this agreement to draft a "determined" (preliminary) standard during its January meeting, which is when modems using the technology are likely to begin appearing. Chances are also good the ITU will ratify the final standard at its September 1998 meeting. [JLC]
Avoid Simple Typos
If, like me, you find yourself typing 2911 in place of 2011 entirely too often, you can have Mac OS X (either Lion or Snow Leopard) fix such typos for you automatically. Just open the Language & Text pane of System Preferences, click the Text button at the top, and then add a text substitution by clicking the + button underneath the list. It won't work everywhere (for that you'll want a utility like Smile's TextExpander), but it should work in applications like Pages and TextEdit, and in Save dialog boxes.