Back to 7/96 Reviews SW: FocalPoint 5.0
Up to Table of Contents
Ahead to 7/96 Reviews SW: BlueSky Help-to-HTML Kit

7/96 Reviews SW: Internet Made Easy

Listing of July 1996 Reviews

Web Wonders Unraveled

By James E. Powell

They call it surfing, but making your way through the oceans of information on the Web can be much more like swimming against the current. Internet Made Easy, a suite of Internet applications, promises help at everything from establishing an account to creating your own home page. At under $40, it's quite a bargain.

The program asks you to define your interests in the Internet-whether you want business, recreational or educational resources-then uses them to create your personal profile, a snapshot of your interests and how you intend to use the system. Your answers are matched to the program's huge database of Web sites on its CD-ROM. The program supports multiple user profiles.

Internet Made Easy asked if I was interested in Arts and Entertainment, for example, then showed me options for art galleries, authors, movies, music, radio and television, and food and drink. I checked the categories I was interested in (some 30,000 are offered), and IME helped me refine my choices. The database includes dozens of museums, art galleries and exhibits worldwide that I could select individually. The program also defaults to a preselected list.

Next I selected other online activities, such as whether I wanted to send and receive e-mail, Web-surf, read online news, shop or join newsgroups. The program explained each choice, and helped me describe my PC environment, indicate when I planned to be online and, if necessary, add parental controls.

IME digested all that, checked for installed Internet software and recommended a service provider. I spend about 25 hours a month on the Net, both prime time and after-hours, so it suggested I try a national provider with a local number-such as Netcom, MSN, America Online, CompuServe, PSInet, Mosaic In A Box or Prodigy-then gave me an estimate of charges. IME installs the required software and helps you sign up for an account. Once installed, IME builds a personal home page for you and opens it in your browser. Click on a link and you'll be connected to your service provider.

For simplicity, nothing else I've seen comes as close as Internet Made Easy. Though its lists will need updating with time, this product is a good starting point for your Internet experience.

Info File
Internet Made Easy
$39.95 (street)
Pros: Setup; options; no jargon
Cons: Site list requires updating
Platforms: Windows 95, 3.1x, NT
Disk Space: 8MB
US Online
800-US-ONLINE, 206-867-5103
WinMag Box Score: 3.5

Back to 7/96 Reviews SW: FocalPoint 5.0
Up to Table of Contents
Ahead to 7/96 Reviews SW: BlueSky Help-to-HTML Kit