Life's changing fast with the Internet-and the intranets

Now that we've survived the Internet hoopla of the last couple of years, many of us are
seeing our agencies begin to rely heavily on intranets. 

 An intranet is really just an Internet accessible only by those within an agency or
office. I don't understand why we coined two such similar-sounding words. Do you? 

 The main purpose of most intranets will be to disseminate internal information. It's
a fast and easy way to inform employees about rules, regulations, policies, manuals,
guides, events and meetings, and changes in all of the above. 

 By 1998, the Microsoft Windows 97 operating system will feature a full-time browser
as its primary user interface. This interface will make the intranet omnipresent in your
daily work. 

 It will be tough to tell your boss you didn't get a memo when it has been
"pushed" to your desktop. You won't see a screensaver anymore, just the boss'
memo staring silently at you. 

 This shift in information dissemination promises to reshape our government computing
jobs as well as our lives.   

Charles S. Kelly is a computer systems analyst at the National Science Foundation.
You can e-mail him on the Internet at [email protected].
  This column expresses his personal views, not the official views of NSF.

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