DOES THIS BELONG TO YOU?
"It amazes me," Jackie Pampa-lone said. "Why wouldn't you try to find the owner of something that's lost? It's just the right thing to do." And this was after the suburban Rochester, N.Y., resident fielded numerous phone calls from people who wanted to commend her and husband Paul for returning a trunkful of Christmas presents to young Collin Myers. Collin and his mother, Jeanne Comstock, were en route home to Massachusetts after the big day when they realized all the gifts from his father in Rochester had fallen from their car. The bounty: gift certificates, a book, cash, and clothing. They retraced their route, finding nothing. But the Pampalones did, in the middle of the street, and called a local newspaper with the story. A grateful C.R. Myers read the piece, retrieved his son's presents, and sent them on their way once again.
Are you a computer-game fan who spent last year waiting in vain for the latest Duke Nukem release? Or perhaps looking for digital film? Well, you won't find either, at least not yet. Both are examples of "vaporware" - hyped-up products or technologies that so far have failed to materialize as promised. According to global Internet network Terra Lycos, the top 10 examples of vaporware in 2001 are:
1. 3D Realm's Duke Nukem Forever (computer game)
2. Blizzard Software's Warcraft III (computer game)
3. Adobe Photoshop for the Apple OSX operating system
4. Value software's Team Fortress (multiplayer game)
5. 3G wireless networks (next-generation service)
6. Silicon Film's Electronic Film System (digital film)
7. Digiscents' iSmell (personal scent synthesizer)
8. Artificial intelligence
9. Peekabooty (surfing tool to access censored websites)
10. Indrema (open-source console for computer gaming)
-- Associated Press