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In the last few weeks we've seen two major movies getting lots of media exposure. First there was Stars Wars: Episode II -- Attack of the Clones and any day now we've got Spider-Man, reputed to have cost USD100 million, coming to a screen near you.
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For the record 31 May
Friday, May 31 2002
by Sylvia Leatham

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Specialists move to develop bullet-proof PC | Scientist claims computer program can predict World Cup winner

A number of firms in the tech sector have won awards at the inaugural InterTrade Ireland All-Island trade awards, which are aimed at promoting North-South trade. Among the winners were Derry group Andronics, who provide an Internet-based system for remote monitoring of sewage treatment plants; Nevada tele.com, a telecoms firm that provides voice, data, Internet, e-commerce, security and call centre solutions; Computer Gym, a specialist in mobile computer training centres; and web design consultancy, the Internet Business.

More than 50 percent of all Web users have downloaded software without paying for it, according to a new study by the Business Software Alliance (BSA). In a survey of 1,026 Web users, the trade group found that 57 percent of respondents never or seldom pay for copyrighted works they download, while 12 percent admitted to pirating software. The BSA said factors contributing to software theft included the growing number of Internet users, increased bandwidth and the feeling of anonymity experienced while on-line.

On-line search engine Google has named the winner of its first programming contest as Daniel Egnor, a computer scientist from New York. Egnor, who was awarded USD10,000 in cash and a trip to Google's headquarters in California, created a location-based search tool that could enable Google users to restrict their search results to specific geographic regions. If implemented into the search engine, Egnor's code could allow a Web user to ask for pages that match a keyword and are based in a particular location.

"Wearable" computer specialist Xybernaut is working on a bullet-proof version of a portable PC. Xybernaut, who design body-mounted computer systems, have formed a partnership with Second Chance Body Armor, a US manufacturer of body armour for law enforcement and the military. Xybernaut's wearable computers will be integrated into Second Chance's high-tech body armour to create a safe and highly portable computing system for soldiers and police.

A mathematician at the University of Warwick has invented a computer program to predicts the winner of the World Cup, according to New Scientist. Using bookmakers' odds, statistical analysis, computer simulation and a measure of each team's unpredictability, Henry Stott calculated that Argentina have a 13.2 percent chance of winning the tournament. His system gives Brazil a 9.3 percent chance, France an 8.7 percent chance and England a 6.9 percent chance of winning.


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