' But can they program trapdoors? Experienced Java, C++ and Cobol programmers are for hire dirt cheap'not offshore, but right here in the U.S. of A. The New Hampshire Correctional Industries' Information Technology Division has 60 workers who not only program but also design Web sites for agencies, municipalities and nonprofit organizations in the state. They earn $1.50 to $3 per hour based on performance. The correctional IT division, which has been working with computers since the 1970s, did not disclose the severity of the inmates' crimes, but the workers do have job security. Call Bill Covatis at 603-271-1873.

' Barbie B-Book. First we had the notebook, then the iBook and now the B-Book. Licensed by Mattel Inc., the B-Book notebook PC and its companion pocket-size computer are the ultimate computer toys. Barbie's signature pink and purple hues decorate the multimedia B-Book, which comes with LCD, ergonomic keyboard, mouse and SmartCard port to add more learning games and entertainment. The price? Only $59.99. And the Portable Companion is $39.99'that's a computer, by the way, not Ken.

' Weakest link. Broadband availability is proceeding much more slowly than expected, with only 15 percent of U.S. homes now wired for high-speed cable or digital subscriber line access, Microsoft Corp. chairman Bill Gates complained last month at a gathering of broadband chieftains in Redmond, Wash. According to Paul Thurrott's WinInfo Daily Update mail list, Gates called the broadband executives 'the weakest link' and then ordered them off the stage, one by one, during the meeting. Do you think this is a fair rap or not? Cast your vote at [email protected].


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