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International Business Machines Corp. will launch two...


International Business Machines Corp. will launch two computing magazines later this month aimed at customers and potential customers.

Though the magazines essentially will be marketing vehicles for IBM, they will accept ads from competing computer and software companies.

The magazines, called Profit and Beyond Computing, will be distributed by controlled circulation, a tactic used by many trade publications that targets people in certain industries or job classifications.

The magazines, which will come out every other month, will be sent free of charge to those that meet the qualifications.

Profit will be aimed at small business owners, while Beyond Computing will target executives at medium and large companies. Each will have a circulation of 200,000, IBM said.

IBM spokeswoman Tracy O'Neill said the new magazines will be aimed at showing how companies can solve problems with computers rather than just describe IBM products.

Intel Corp. has entered a joint venture with Japanese consumer electronics giant Sharp Corp. to develop and produce new generations of "flash" memory products, which are projected to be one of the highest-growth areas in the semiconductor arena.

Flash memory chips store large amounts of information even after power is turned off. The memory can be rapidly erased and reprogrammed electronically, hence the name "flash."

Flash memory components are expected to be used widely in hand-held and pen-top computers, electronic photography, and in a variety of cellular phones and other telecommunications products.

They are considered superior to other memory chips, which either cannot be reprogrammed or must be removed and reprogrammed at the factory, an expensive and time-consuming procedure.

Digital Equipment Corp. slashed prices on its personal computers last week, matching Apple Computer Inc. and Dell Computer Corp. in the year's first round of aggressive PC price cutting.

Digital, better known as a maker of big computer systems, cut its U.S. prices on its PCs and PC products 5 to 35 percent.

Cupertino, Calif.-based Apple cut prices on many of its Macintosh PCs by 9 percent to 37 percent. Dell, a leading maker of IBM-compatible PCs from Austin, Texas, cut its PC prices by 4 percent to 38 percent and the prices of its computer peripherals by 47 percent.From Wire Reports

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