Spyglass Signs Agreement with NCSA to Enhance and Broadly Relicense Mosaic Graphical Browser for the Internet
Commercial Windows and Macintosh Versions Available in June; X Windows Version to Follow in July
Internet World, San Jose, Calif. - June 1, 1994 - Spyglass, Inc. and the National Center for Supercomputing Applications (NCSA) at the University of Illinois/Urbana-Champaign have entered into an agreement that will get Mosaic, NCSA's graphical browser for the Internet, to the desktops of millions of people. The agreement gives Spyglass full rights to enhance, commercialize and broadly relicense Mosaic. Spyglass is making a multimillion-dollar commitment to NCSA and will focus initially on developing a commercially enhanced version of Mosaic that other companies will incorporate with their products for distribution to their customers. The announcement was made today in San Jose, on the opening day of exhibits at the Spring '94 Internet World conference.
Developed by NCSA, Mosaic gives users point-and-click access to the World Wide Web (WWW), an information retrieval system on the Internet with more than 2,300 graphical, multimedia databases of "hyperlinked" documents. The Internet is a vast "supernetwork" of public and private networks connecting thousands of organizations and an estimated 20 million individual users. New users are joining the Internet at the rate of 2 million each month, and hundreds of new WWW servers are coming online every month. Because of the reach of the Internet, it offers an attractive vehicle for electronic publishing and for conducting business globally.
"Mosaic and World Wide Web are two key ingredients for successful electronic publishing and commerce on the Internet. But, to date, businesses have tapped only a fraction of the Internet's potential because these tools haven't been commercially available. Working with NCSA, we're going to change this," said Douglas Colbeth, president of Spyglass, which was formed in 1990 and has commercialized other NCSA technologies.
"We're committed to evolving Mosaic so it becomes a robust, commercial tool with complete documentation, technical support and advanced features," explained Tim Krauskopf, co-founder of Spyglass and developer of NCSA Telnet. "We'll be collaborating with NCSA and other key partners to create new tools and establish standards that will help organizations build robust World Wide Web information servers quickly and inexpensively."
"It has been thrilling to see the universal acceptance of NCSA Mosaic as an interactive window into cyberspace," said Larry Smarr, director of the NCSA. "I am very pleased to see Spyglass making such a financial commitment to the commercialization of Mosaic, which frees NCSA up to develop the next level of functionality for the public domain. Spyglass has been a terrific technology partner for us in the past and we look forward to an even closer working relationship in the future."
"We welcome Spyglass as our partner in this effort because of the company's track
record in commercializing other NCSA technologies and our rapidly developing close
working relationship with the people at Spyglass," said Joseph Hardin, associate
director of NCSA's software
program. "Spyglass gives us the cross-platform development, global distribution and ongoing financial resources we need to take the Mosaic environment to the next level. With this commercialization arrangement with Spyglass in place, NCSA is freed to continue to develop core technologies for Mosaic as well as new technologies that leverage the Internet. We encourage companies to take advantage of this new relationship with Spyglass and contact them about volume licensing arrangements for Mosaic technology."
Mosaic has been called the "killer application" for the Internet because it lets users navigate the Internet by browsing through a series of graphical, multimedia documents. The WWW was developed several years ago by CERN, a European consortium of scientists based in Switzerland, to keep track of researchers' information and to provide an easy method of sharing data. Subsequently, WWW has grown into one of the world's most open and widely used environments for information publishing, browsing and retrieval.
WWW servers contain eye-catching documents with built-in links to other documents, allowing the user to move easily and naturally around the Internet. With Mosaic, users can browse through page after page of menus, hyperlinked to data dispersed all over the world, without having to know the location or network address of the information they are seeking.
Spyglass has re-architected Mosaic so it will be a more robust and full-featured tool. Enhancements available in Enhanced NCSA Mosaic from Spyglass include improved installation, better memory management, increased performance, new forms capabilities, online hypertext-based help, support for a proxy gateway and user interface improvements such as support for multiple windows. Future versions will include enhanced security and authentication, which will enable credit-card and other business transactions to take place on the Internet; filters that will enable documents from popular document readers to be read seamlessly by Mosaic; and integration with emerging editing and document management tools.
A number of businesses are already using Mosaic and WWW to publish magazines, deliver goods and services, provide technical support to customers and conduct other forms of business electronically. For example, Mosaic and WWW are part of the recently announced $12 million CommerceNet project, a public- and private-sector-backed initiative exploring various ways to conduct commerce over the Internet and other data networks. NCSA will continue to maintain a public-with-copyright version of Mosaic, which Internet users can download for free from the Internet. NCSA, which began distributing Mosaic in the late fall, estimates that more than one million people use Mosaic and that more than 30,000 copies are being downloaded each month.
Spyglass will be targeting the following types of customers as initial prospects for large-scale Mosaic client licensing agreements: computer systems and communications vendors, publishers and content providers, and online information service providers. For example, a publisher might want to include Mosaic with a subscription to an online magazine or a computer vendor might want to include Mosaic with each system sold. By building WWW servers themselves and distributing Mosaic clients to their customers, businesses can easily use this system for communicating with customers, providing technical support, distributing product and marketing information and other kinds of commerce.
Enhanced NCSA Mosaic from Spyglass will be available for Microsoft Windows and
Apple Macintosh desktop computers this month and for X
Windows computers in July. To navigate the Internet, Mosaic users require a direct connection to the Internet or a PPP or SLIP connection. Enhanced NCSA Mosaic from Spyglass will be priced aggressively for high-volume distribution, enabling licensees to incorporate Mosaic into their products and services for a modest cost. For more information about Enhanced NCSA Mosaic from Spyglass, contact Spyglass directly at (217) 355-6000, firstname.lastname@example.org or http://www.spyglass.com/.
The National Center for Supercomputing Applications, based at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, is supported by grants from the National Science Foundation, other federal agencies, the State of Illinois, the University of Illinois and corporate partners.
Founded in 1990, Spyglass, Inc. is the leading developer of visual data analysis tools for the engineering and scientific marketplace, which support Windows, Macintosh and UNIX platforms. The company's venture-capital partners include Greylock Management of Boston, Mass. and Venrock Associates of New York City.
Spyglass is a registered trademark of Spyglass, Inc. All other brands or products are trademarks or registered trademarks of their respective holders and should be treated as such.