ATLANTA - What has a download time of nine months, comes with complete sound effects and automatically upgrades itself?
The answer: a baby. And if you've got one on the way, you'll need a lot of help. One good source is the Internet.
The Baby Center at www.babycenter.com is a logical place to start. You'll find plenty of discussion there on the sort of things prospective parents worry about: finances, tips for coping with the rigors of pregnancy, ways to share the increased load of work at home, and even informed opinions on issues such as whether or not to breastfeed.
But the most useful features of this page are the chat rooms and bulletin boards. After all, there are plenty of times when you need to talk to the real experts - other parents.
You can start the name game at the Baby Center by going to its Baby Names section at http://www.babycenter.com/babyname/. If you are thinking you'll find a list of alphabetized names there - Adam through Zelda - you're not thinking in a proper high-tech way.
Instead, you'll use a menu to tell the Web page's program whether you want names for a boy or girl. Then let it know if you want German, African, French, Hindu, Irish or Hawaiian names. If you like, you can even specify a beginning letter and ending letter.
Of course, if you go to all that trouble, you might as well think of a name yourself.
One of the trends in baby naming has been a return to Biblical names. There are a lot of Matthews, Marks and Johns these days. If you want some help in that regard go to a page called Baby Bible Names at http://ann.nrg.com.au/performance/babyname/bubnames.html.
Names are fun, and so is waiting for the baby. But it's also serious business, and there are way too many topics to worry and think about to rely on a single Web page.
So go to the Pre-pregnancy and Pregnancy Resource Page at http://www.geocities.com/Heartland/Hills/4126/ and link to sources of information about fertility. You'll find due-date forecasters and even a screen saver that will count off the days to your predicted delivery.
Finally, if there is a possibility of a premature birth, try BabyZone's Premature Baby Page at http://siteguider.com/premature.htm. Besides information specific to that particular possibility, there's lots of good general baby-rearing information, too.
Pub Date: 5/04/98