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Kentucky VillageNet acquisition insure's televillage's survival


The most recent news for Internet users in Hardin and surrounding communities is the acquisition of Kentucky VillageNet by Nolin RECC's satellite division, Home Satellite Corporation.

The move has been in the works awhile, and was formally announced Monday.

The acquisition should relieve some of the growing pains that have plagued KVN since it went on line Oct. 4, 1994.

Equipment upgrades, more phone lines and faster modems are in store for KVN, according to Chris Perry, a Nolin systems engineer.

Acquiring KVN and investing to improve the area's access to telecommunications mirrors Nolin's moves to help bring electricity to rural central Kentucky after the Rural Electrification Act was passed in 1938, he said.

"We're real excited about it," Perry said Thursday. "We're ready. We want to make the investment."

Those investments should improve the quality of KVN's service, which has had some very rocky times in the past.

KVN (originally called Kentucky Online) went on-line in October 1994 with a computer bulletin board system that was one of the first to offer Internet-based e-mail to the area. KVN added additional Internet access to its service last fall.

KVN's survival to this point can be credited to the support of its users and the dedication of its volunteers, who have performed a wide array of tasks to help keep KVN functioning.

KVN was a subsidiary of the Kentucky Rural Telecommunications Center, which was a pilot project of the Lexington-based Kentucky Science and Technology Council.

The KRTC's intent was to create centers to promote and provide public access to emerging communications technologies -- video conferencing, the Internet, e-mail, etc.

Two such centers were approved: One in Elizabethtown to serve the Lincoln Trail area, and another in Pikeville to serve the Big Sandy area of Eastern Kentucky.

Plans were established to eventually buy or build a center that would house a telecommunications center for public and business use.

No center was ever built, but KVN's computer bulletin board began a virtual center or meeting place for the area's computer users.

KIND WORDS. Looking for something new to say to that someone special in your life? Has your relationship reached the point where a simple compliment has lost its ability to convey your true feelings?

I recommend you fire up your browser and surf to The Surrealist Compliment Generator, available at http://pharmdec.wustl.edu/cgi-bin/jardin_scripts/SCG

The variety of compliments you'll find there will simple amaze (and possible befuddle) your significant love one. They include such gems as:

• I love your eyes, but only with ketchup.

• Be still, my love, my watermelon rind. I am consumed with your collection of agile fans and spare blades.

• You are as dazzling as a pregnant cow attired in electrical sockets.

The key word here is "surreal," remember!

It's a fun site, and while it fits in the "too much time on their hands" category. I think its a hoot.

If you visit this Web site, don't forget to click the ``Reload'' to see the site's many compliments.

PIZZA THE ACTION. While most big commercial sites try to sell something, Domino's isn't trying to sell online pizzas -- yet.

What their Web site at www.dominos.com offers is information presented in a very entertaining and attractive way.

While you can't order that pizza, the Web site does offer a locator index, complete with a map of the location of each of the 5,400 stores. The map is quite detailed; I zoomed in and could find an alley that runs near my house.

Besides the usual corporate information, you'll find some really interesting pizza facts in its ``Pizza Meter'' section -- all related to how national events seem to affect the pizza-buying habits of Americans.

For example, Domino's has determined that:

• During "ER" time slot on Thursdays, pizza deliveries to doctors in emergency rooms increase 5 percent and orders to patients increase 10 percent.

• After presidential candidate Bob Dole initially discussed his 15 percent tax cut, tipping decreased by 13% compared to the half hour before the topic arose.

• The song most often playing in people's homes when they answered the door was "Hold My Hand" by Hootie and the Blowfish in '95.

While this information won't up your ACT score or get you into Mensa, it's interesting information well packaged at an very nicely constructed Web site.

For all you wanted to know about Domino's, point your browser to www.dominos.com.

PLANETARY INTERACTION. You may have read one of the books written by John Gray, author of the bestseller ``Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus''.

Now there's a Web site devoted to Gray's relationship materials.

His Web site, www.marsvenus.com, offers you information on the his books, tapes and seminars on relationships, as well as an online chat area and an archived area for relationship questions and answers.

You can order all of his merchandise via secure online ordering.

If you've ever wondered what all the fuss about his books is about, the Web site should give you an idea if his view of relationships will benefit you.

Gray's views on relationships (and how on-line computing has changed the way opposite sexes relate) can be found in the the current issue of Yahoo! Internet Life, now on sale at local bookstores and newsstands.

Comments and questions about this column may be sent to jbrooks@myoldkentuckyhome.com, or visit www.myoldkentuckyhome.com on the World Wide Web.

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