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Shopping online and the possibilities of cyberspace

Hi Suds Buds!

Ho Ho Ho and Happy Chanukah Suds Buds!

It's that Happy Holidaze time of year. Only 11 shopping days left till Christmas and Chanukah is already upon us! Don't know about you, but panic is setting at our house. This is such a hectic time. Joyous, and happy, and hectic. The Christmas decorations went up last weekend. Cards went out this week, and the shopping? Although I hate to admit this, we have not yet begun to shop. Oh my. Wish us luck.

Which is one of the reasons TRO is launching it's very own cyber store! Now we can all shop right here at Turtle-Run Online. In association with some of the internet's most trusted and reliable vendor resources, we bring you online shopping with some fun, easy, and affordable ideas for gift-giving, including the most incredible fatfree brownies!

The TRO Store should be up and running this week. I plan on jump starting my shopping right from here, and hope you will, too. Each time you make a purchase directly from the TRO Store, it helps support the site. I am not above begging for your support. The proceeds will aid in expanding Turtle-Run Online, giving us the financial resources to offer you a wider range of features and activities, including celebrity chats, personal nutrition help from a registered dietician/nutritionst, a Turtle-Run Entertainment production of Skyway to Destiny, our original cybersoap, and so much more. Please consider bookmarking TRO and making it your first choice for shopping online. The TRO staff thanks you in advance and looks forward to bringing you more fantabulous features in 2000.

Speaking of online shopping, have you noticed how many advertisements for websites proliferate television, radio and magazines these days? Everything is ".com this," ".com that." Even Turtle-Run Online has begun an ad campaign in Soap Opera Weekly's classified section.

How far the phenom of the internet has come. My first introduction to the world wide web was at a NASA installation in Oakland, CA in early 1994. I was writing a corporate video for a management consultant company called CSC (Computer Sciences Corporation). We were spotlighting the wind-tunnel simulations of this particular division of NASA, which were made possible by the massively parallel-processing computers housed there. Rooms full of them. One of the scientists had the internet on his computer screen and was interacting in real time with a colleague in Australia. I was immediately intrigued by the net, which I learned, had been in governmental use for the past 20 years.

Shortly thereafter, a writer friend signed me on to AOL for writing research. I got hooked and hooked many others, signing up quite a number of friends associates through AOL's sign-on-a-friend program.

About a year later, I remember seeing a strange billboard ad. "Visit us at" What a mouthful, I thought. I'll never remember that. What's an http, anyway? LOL

Now, ".coms" are everywhere. No one needs explain the "http://" part. We all know what it is! The gazillions of dollars worth of massively parallel-processing computers housed at NASA's Oakland research facility have been incorporated in a scaled down form in the $2,500.00 Macintosh G4 personal computer. I remember the scientist at NASA explaining that a massively parallel-processing computer had the capability to compute in one second what it would take the human brain 30,000 years to compute. "Why would we ever want to know something THAT fast," I marveled. His response included things like "warp speed," and "beam me up, Scotty." Not that the G4 is capable of warp speed space travel, it is one speedy computing machine, and the first that I know of to offer parallel processing for home use. Sign on with that baby and fly the net, never mind surf it!

How far the phenom of the internet has come! How far behind the soaps are in capitalizing on it's story potential. Aside from the blossoming of scattered cyber romances, I don't think there's one soap character who hosts a web site from home, or a soap storyline that includes a web design business, cyber addiction, cyber theft, or a child character getting seduced by some sleeze ball online. That's a story overflowing with social and parenting issues. How do we prevent something like that from happening to our own kids? What should we be on the look out for? Don't know about you, but I see the internet offering numerous possibilities for telling compelling stories. Passions did use cyberspace when Grace was searching for Faith, All My Children for the Charlie/Cicely romance, and I am sure there were a few others. But I still say the world of soaps is far behind the real world in getting online. With the current reality of sagging ratings and lackluster storytelling, writers may want to look to the cyber arena for thought-provoking, issue-oriented material for the new millennium.