close this bookVolume 2: No. 28
View the documentNews -- politics
View the documentNews -- economy
View the documentNews -- graphics
View the documentNews -- computer industry
View the documentNews -- OCR; handwriting recognition
View the documentNews -- job opportunities
View the documentDiscussion -- software careers

The world market for personal productivity software should grow from $45B in 1991 to $101B by 1996, according to Forrester Research, Inc. This includes databases, operating systems, utilities, development tools, and applications. The share for independent software vendors will increase from $20B now to $58B. Client/server software will show the largest growth, from $1B to $23B. Stand-alone and file-sharing systems will retain 15% and 9% of the growing market, while time-sharing systems will drop from 74% to 56%. Mainframe software development is likely to drop from 59% of developer revenue to just 36%, or about a 30% increase in real dollars. [CW, 6/15.] A rising tide lifts all boats.

Japan's PC market has had its first decline since 1980, down 7% from last year. Notebooks accounted for 85% of Japanese PC sales last year, up 15%, and shipments of 32-bit computers rose 81%. [JEIDA. Lori Valigra, IDG News Service. Electronic News, 5/11.]

Poqet Computer has been renamed Fujitsu Personal Systems, part of a $2B personal systems group aimed at field automation and mobile worker applications. [Dana Blankenhorn, Newsbytes. CC, 6/16.]

Toshiba Corp. claims its Prolog-based "Fountain of Wisdom" program can search through commercial databases, drawing analogies and suggesting new ideas. First you have to sit at a workstation and load in knowledge of the domain, but that only takes half a day. It bootstraps knowledge from declarative sentences like "steak equals a broiled piece of meat." [Robert Buderi, BW, 7/13.]

Donna Dubinsky, a founder of Claris, has been recruited as president/CEO of Palm Computing (Los Altos, CA), a start-up specializing in palmtop computers. [SF Chronicle, 6/26.]

Aion Corp. (Palo Alto, CA) will merge with AICorp Inc. (Waltham, MA). Robert Goldman of AICorp will be chairman; James Gagnard of Aion will be CEO. A name for the $35M company will be announced in September. Staff will be reduced from 300 to 245, with the number of people at the Palo Alto headquarters increasing slightly. Waltham will continue to have a major facility. [SJM, 6/26.]

Compaq is transforming itself from a hardware manufacturer to a system integrator and software provider. It is currently looking for software partners who can boost the value of Compaq hardware. [Michael Fitzgerald, CW, 6/15.]

Next Computer Inc. reports that it has a new $55M line of credit from Canon and $10M from Steve Jobs. The company is believed to have absorbed over $200M without showing a profit, although sales last year were $127M. Steve Jobs still plans to take the company public soon. [Lee Gomes, SJM, 6/30.]

Attendees at LUV-91 have formed an Association of Lisp Users (ALU) and a Lisp Industry Council (LIC) to promote the use of Lisp. Contact Jim Aragones, (518) 387-6967. [AI Magazine, Summer '92.]

IBM will abandon OfficeVision LAN, its low-end office environment. Users will be encouraged to switch to Lotus Notes. [Rosemary Hamilton, CW, 6/8.]

A DEC-owned Business Enterprise Cluster has opened in Mountain View, CA. The 15,000-square foot Cluster leases short-term space to start-ups and supports entrepreneurs in other ways. Jim Robbins, (415) 691-4546. [SEF, 7/92.]

OSF, USL, and Sun have agreed to adopt Tivoli Systems' WizDom object-oriented technology for managing distributed Unix systems. [CW, 6/15.]

The most prominent companies producing object-oriented databases are Itasca Systems, Object Design, Objectivity Inc., Ontos, Servio, and Versant Object Technologies. Last year they sold $25M; five years from now the industry expects sales of $500M. [Joseph R. Garber, Forbes, 7/6.]

Symantec and Apple Computer have agreed to market Symantec's "Bedrock" cross-platform object-oriented application framework for generating Mac and Windows C++ source. The program should be available by next summer, although certain developers may get it this fall. Users of Apple's MacApp will be encouraged to migrate to Bedrock, which will eventually support OS/2, Windows/NT, and Unix as well. For technical information, call (415) 592-7600 and request the "Bedrock Framework White Paper." [Jon Pugh (, tcl-talk, 6/22. Bill Park (]