Google Acquires Deja.com Usenet Archive -- The popular Google search engine and Web catalog, currently our favorite search site, has acquired Deja.com's Usenet Discussion Service, the archive of every Usenet posting since 1995. That accounts for over 500 million messages - a terabyte of discussions. Back when it was called DejaNews, Deja.com initially provided just a Web-accessible archive of Usenet postings, but they caught portal fever and lost focus (and presumably a lot of money - eBay's Half.com acquired Deja.com's Precision Buying Service). Although it will take Google some time to develop the tools necessary to provide a good interface to all 500 million postings, they are making postings since August of 2000 available with a relatively sparse feature set. We're pleased to see Google taking over this essential resource - few Internet companies providing useful services have come close to matching Google's focus on usability, performance, and design restraint. [ACE]
Improve Apple Services with AirPort Base Stations
You can make iChat file transfers, iDisk, and Back to My Mac work better by turning on a setting with Apple AirPort base stations released starting in 2003. Launch AirPort Utility, select your base station, click Manual Setup, choose the Internet view, and click the NAT tab. Check the Enable NAT Port Mapping Protocol (NAT-PMP) box, and click Update. NAT-PMP lets your Mac OS X computer give Apple information to connect back into a network that's otherwise unreachable from the rest of the Internet. This speeds updates and makes connections work better for services run by Apple.