The URL U Want

URLS are Uniform Resource Locators, a standardized Internet address system for the World Wide Web, File Transfer Protocol, and Gopher. Each month in this space, SEDS brings you the latest and greatest URLs, the URLs U Want. It seems that every company and its mother has an entry in the web browser field. The winner so far has been Netscape, which has a galaxy of improvements over the original Web browser, Mosaic. Now Sun Microsystems has entered the picture with the Hot Java browser.

Hot Java (which currently only works with Sun systems running Solaris 2.4) has the remarkable feature of allowing in-line (i.e. in the web page) graphical mini-apps.

The current apps, which are written in Java extension to C++, include things like rotating, scrollable images, scrolling or dancing text, 3-D objects, games with sound and graphics like Tic-Tac-Toe, Reversi (Othello) Hangman (right), graphing math functions that are updated in real time, and sound files that play directly to the system's sound port.

The potential is really unlimited; this could provide tremendous opportunity for interactive educational materials (and not to mention, jobs for C/C++ programmers!!)

And now for the URLs (the envelope please)!

The Department of Energy has an interesting tour of the history of nuclear development called "Closing the Circle On the Splitting Of the Atom" subtitled "The Environmental Legacy of Nuclear Weapons Production In the United States and What the Department of Energy is Doing About It." I suppose the purpose is to reassure the taxpayer that, yes, the problem is immense, but that We Are Doing Something About It.

For more nice pictures of corroding toxic waste barrels, go to

We welcome the Tucson Amateur Astronomy Association (TAAA) to the web; they can be found at TAAA has monthly meetings, often with distinguished speakers, on the first Friday of each month in Steward Observatory, N210.

If transcendental numbers are your thing, if pi captures your imagination, if you stay awake at night wondering about the relation between the circumference and diameter of a circle, then you can find about 1.25 million digits at and it doesn't look anything like 22/7.

The New York Times offers a daily distillation of their paper in Adode Acrobat format at Acrobat readers are freely available there for X-Windows, PC's and Mac's.

My favorite surrealist has always been Rene Magritte. I was therefore gratified to find many of his works available at

Organic chemists will be interested in a hypertext guide to the amino acids with formulae, symbols and ray-traced models.

Speaking of ray-tracing, the Fun Time Waster this month is, everything you need to get started in this addictive recreational activity. Also included is a large sample of images, such as the one below.

Guy McArthur