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    Cyberia

    By DAVE GUSSOW

    © St. Petersburg Times, published September 10, 2000


    A LITERARY COMMUNITY:Readers looking for information about favorite authors and their books can visit PreviewPort.com, an interactive site serving authors, publishers and readers. Visitors can buy books, see video clips of authors and check out a calendar of literary events across the country. One warning: I found the site sluggish, even with a high-speed connection, so patience may be required.

    FUN WITH WORDS I: The Gigawit Dictionary of the E-nglish Language (Gigawit, $12.95) compiled by Tony Hendra is not for techies who love jargon. It's more for people who like a good laugh at the techies' expense. You know what the Internet is, but how about Intern-et? That's a young female intern (with a famous intern's picture nearby). Privacy is the "outmoded notion that intimate personal information about an individual is the property of that individual, when in fact it's the property of . . ." (followed by two pages of Fatal Error in red type).

    FUN WITH WORDS II:Do you know what "erumpent" means? How about the anagram Swollen Rose (with a hint that it's related to the Academy Awards)? (Answers below.) The Spizzerinctum Page (www.mcs.net/kvj/spizz.html) says its mission is "reintroducing unusual, rare, and obsolete words to the language by using them in the context of current news events." The site is maintained by Kevin V. Johnson, a writer for the Life section at USA Today. In addition to quizzes and word of the day, it has fun features such as boiling the movie Titanic down to a 5-minute summary, including dialogue. Word answers: Erumpent means bursting apart or open. Swollen Rose translates into Orson Welles.

    Dave Gussow is the Times personal technology editor.

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