Notes from the field: Gloomy weather, tedious card games bring curious games to light

Notes from the field: Gloomy weather, tedious card games bring curious games to light

May, usually the time I start to shop for a new bathing suit, has fooled us all with funnel clouds.

Instead of searching for barbecues last week, I spent my days dodging all that Mother Nature saw fit to deliver to Silicon Valley, courtesy of her petulant child El Nino.

On the plus side, as we all headed for the basement to play "Cluedo" and wait out the stormy weather, it gave me the chance to catch up on some of the wheeling and dealing going on in the Valley.

Apparently, Intel and Netscape are hammering out some plans to create a combined Web site to promote their products and sell them as well. But when I cornered one of the Intel storm refugees, all he could do was laugh. Evidently the two companies don't get along all that well.

Being forced into a basement might be the only thing that will bring about the much ballyhooed deal between Bay Networks and either Lucent or Nortel. It seems that both companies have made offers to acquire Bay, but so far both have been rejected. Bay's head honchos apparently want a cool $US80 per share for the company, almost three times what the company's stock is currently going for.

Down in the dark

At least one Cringe tipster passed a note over with his cards during the game. It said that Oracle will replace its sales and customer-service solution through a partnership with a major independent sales-force automation company. Although he couldn't say which company would partner with the Big O.

Rumour also has it around the shelter that both Intershop and Interworld are planning to go public with their companies in the coming months. But in Intershop's case, they plan to do so in the German market - no doubt to avoid the bad weather and the various tax requirements that will be imposed to pay for storm damage.

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