Digital Enterprises V-Card is victoriousDigital...


July 26, 1993|By Steve Auerweck | Steve Auerweck,Staff Writer

Digital Enterprises V-Card is victorious

Digital Enterprises Inc.'s V-Card has survived the hack attack.

The Gaithersburg company threw down the gauntlet in May: $5,000 to the first programmer to take down a PC protected by its anti-virus packages. Operations Vice President Frank Huggins said Friday that 31 assaults were attempted during the eight weeks of the challenge, none successfully.

Mr. Huggins said some of those who took the company up on its offer were college students -- "a couple were pretty good" -- but most were in the computer security business. A number were attending the National Computer Security Association convention in Washington in June.

"We've collected quite a string of viruses from people who've tried it," Mr. Huggins said.

Digital sells two levels of virus protection: V-Card, which combines hardware and software, and the ProTec and ScanPro software packages.

The test systems were loaded up with all three packages. Alone, "any software can be defeated, our's or anybody else's," Mr. Huggins said.

Rockwell's new chip billed as a bit faster

Modems keep getting faster, bit, by bit, by bit . . . .

It was just a few years ago that buying a 2,400-bit-per-second modem put you atop the technological heap. Then along came 9,600-bps modems, followed quickly by the 14,400-bps models that are close to the current state of the art.

But Rockwell International Corp. shattered the speed limit again last week by announcing a new chip that will handle 28,800-bps data transmission as well as Group 3 send-and-receive fax at up to 14,400 bps.

Rockwell's "data pump" chips are already driving many of the leading brands of high-speed modems. The new "V.Fast" chip will use the same configuration, which will speed new products to market.

The company plans to begin production of a 24,000-bps version of the chip within a month, and the full-speed version in 90 days.

Rockwell will sell both the chips and complete modems. In large quantities, the high-end chip will sell for $123.

Fax modems included in server machines

If you're on the Internet, it's now possible to send free faxes to several regions around the world, including Washington, Silicon Valley and Japan.

Network designers in the regions have been including server machines with inexpensive fax modems. When you send the machine an electronic mail message, it reads the destination phone number and zips off your fax.

Among the leaders of the fax project is researcher Carl Malamud, who created Internet Talk Radio, an interview program that's distributed digitally and can be played on computer workstations.

PostCard offers a view of electronic newspaper

Baltimore-based American Personal Communications LP joined others in the wireless communications business last week in giving President Clinton and Vice President Al Gore a sample of the future.

APC joined with its majority partner, the Washington Post Co., in introducing a prototype multimedia product dubbed PostCard. The Apple Macintosh program, based on HyperCard, offers a taste of what it will be like to have a portable electronic newspaper instantly at the ready.

Scott Schelle of APC said that PostCard is not yet working over the airwaves. But he praised the concept -- related experiments are under way -- as "really exciting."

"It really does combine some important aspects of newspapers with electronic information delivery," he said. "It lets you scan quickly, then puts you in command."

Vitro wins contract for radar support

Vitro Corp. of Silver Spring has won a $66.8 million contract from the Federal Aviation Administration to provide support for the National Airspace System radar network.

Vitro will head a team providing systems, hardware and software engineering to the FAA Surveillance directorate. The contract is for a three-year base and two, two-year options.

Compu-Power to focus on tire industry work

Columbia's Compu-Power Inc. is selling off its accounts in the lumber and paper distribution industries to focus on its point-of-sale and inventory control systems for the tire industry. The deal with Enterprise Computer Systems Inc. of Greenville, S.C., is expected to close on Aug. 16.

Product gives PC users access to business news

Dow Jones Business Information Services, one of the pioneers of electronic news delivery, has a new product that gives personal computer owners unlimited evening and weekend access to business news for $29.95 a month.

The flat-rate package, a radical change in approach for Dow Jones, is called Market Monitor. Callers are able to retrieve business news, quotes, financial "snapshots" of securities, and analysts' reports.

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