Apple Computer's attempt at becoming an ISP in the mid-1990s. Service launched in June 1994 and shut down in 1996.
eWorld, Apple's electronic information service for Macintosh and PowerBook computers, is an innovative, informative, easy-to-use on-line service that combines a global electronic-mail system with information, entertainment, and popular subscription services -- including Reuters America Inc., Tribute Media Services, ZiffNet/Mac, and Inc. Magazine Online. It features:
- Real-world metaphor. eWorld is modeled on the metaphor of a community. It's an electronic neighborhood of colorfully illustrated buildings, plazas, and pavilions, each representing a specified area of the on-line service -- for example, a Library for research, a Newsstand for current events, a Computer Center for assistance and software, and a Community Center for chatting with other members and viewing a listing of events.
- Advanced electronic-mail system. eWorld users can easily communicate with one another, as well as with users of the Internet and other electronic-mail services through mail gateways that simplify addressing. eWorld also offers a range of real-time interactive communications capabilities, such as lectures, forums, and Town Meetings, which allow up to 250 users to participate simultaneously. Smaller groups can chat and collaborate electronically in both public and private forums. And in the future, the service's communications capabilities are expected to incorporate Apple's Open Collaboration Environment (AOCE) technologies, to provide integration with PowerTalk services.
- Cross-platform support. eWorld services will be available on a range of devices, including Windows software-based computers and Newton MessagePad communications assistants, with common features available across platforms.
- Publishing tools. eWorld dramatically simplifies the creation and maintenance of on-line publications. Publishing tools allow publishers to design and prototype new products, and then update them cost-effectively by moving information from their existing files to eWorld's global servers.
- International appeal. eWorld is designed to support multiple languages for both content and applications. It also supports network services from multiple vendors, providing local access points around the world. Native-language versions in German, Japanese, and French are planned for subsequent release.
eWorld has been set up as a "virtual town" -- and the program displays a "town square" with building icons for each section of eWorld. By clicking on the appropriate icon/building you can access the following areas in eWorld:
- Community Center -- general announcements. Headquarters for live interaction.
- Business and Finance -- information and services for the business professional and investor. Weather forecasts and stock market quotes are just a part of this section.
- Computer Center -- describes unique services and products for Mac users. Technical support, shareware and help with hardware/software purchases.
- Learning Center -- features include the complete Grolier Encyclopedia. Reference area including encyclopedias and dictionaries.
- Arts and Leisure Pavilion -- Information and discussions about the arts, television, hobbies, games and much more. Electronic gaming includes forums, shareware libraries, live role playing and interactive adventure games.
- Marketplace -- one stop shopping for products and services -- including travel services and tickets.
- Newsstand -- offers the latest headlines from Reuters, USA Today and other news gathering services.
- Email -- send and receive electronic mail.
- Info Booth -- gives basic information about eWorld. Check out your accrued charges on the system. Change your password.
eWorld was designed to be an interactive system. Users are given the opportunity to correspond with other users via email. Features offered include eWorld Conferences (spontaneous and scheduled conversations on a given topic). Conference topics can be found by clicking the Community Center icon. Protocol and courtesy are discussed. A list of common "smileys" is also given for the new user.
Auditoriums are provided for the interactive user. Usually a guest speaker is invited to address users on the screen. Everyone attending the auditorium session can participate with a response of up to a maximum of 15 words/102 characters. Auditoriums are announced in the Town Square window.
Other interactive features include: email, forums, and eWorld Discussion Boards. Discussion Boards are not as interactive as Conferences but messages or responses may be longer (600 word/4,000 character maximum).
Software libraries are available for users to download. There are three types of software available:
- Freeware files and programs -- no cost apart from connect time to eWorld.
- Shareware -- software you can try for a reasonable period of time before sending the fee required onto the program author. Fees generally range from $5.00 to $25.00 per program.
- Trial size versions of software -- commercial demonstration versions popular software.
Other files you will have access to as a user include: updates, extensions, third party drivers, applications, utilities, fonts, graphics, HyperCard stacks, sounds, information files, QuickTime movies, and the Apple Update Software Library. A gateway is also provided for users of the Internet.
eWorld users with special needs also have the ability to find and share information with similar users and service/products providers. There is a special Forum called "abilities" that contains information regarding computer access for hearing and visually impaired as well as other special needs.