3.00 FYI France: Enewsletter and archive

by Jack Kessler, kessler@well.sf.ca.us

Nov 15, 1995 issue. This file presents an archival copy of the issue of the FYI France ejournal, ISSN 1071-5916, which was distributed via email on November 15, 1995.
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Versions of the following have appeared online regularly, since 1992, as a feature of the FYI France enewsletter, ISSN 1071-5916, which is distributed for free via email every month except August. Enewsletter subscriptions may be obtained via email request to: kessler@well.sf.ca.us .

Here this file is one of a number made available -- hopefully attractively, all in one place, and relevant to libraries and online digital information work in France and Europe -- as part of FYI France(sm)(tm), an online service to which anyone can subscribe for 12 months by postal mailing a check for US $45 -- $35 until January 1, 1997-- payable to Jack Kessler, to PO Box 460668, San Francisco, California, USA 94146 (site licenses also are available): please write your email address on the front of your check. Please email suggestions for improvements to me at kessler@well.sf.ca.us .


From kessler November 15 1995

FYI France: Nat'l.Library School online, & all France in '96?

FYI France: 1.0 the French national library school, the ENSSIB at Lyon,
now is online with a very sophisticated gopher and a very promising -
looking W3 homepage; and, 2.0 France Te'le'com just has undertaken the
provision of Internet access to _everyone_ in France, at the cost of a
local telephone call, in a project to begin this year.

1.0 The national library school, the ENSSIB at Lyon, now on gopher & W3

Librarians, francophiles, francophones, and Internauts all may be
interested to learn that the French national library school -- the
ENSSIB / Ecole Nationale Supe'rieure des Sciences de l'Information et
des Bibliothe`ques, at Lyon -- now has both a highly - developed gopher
service and a new W3 / WorldWideWeb page:  gopher.enssib.fr , and
http://www.enssib.fr .

One indispensable research tool under development at these sites is a
fulltext archive of back issues of _BBF_ / the _Bulletin des
bibliothe`ques de France_, which may be searched using keywords: there
will be few better ways to research a topic in French library,
information, or general "bibliothe'conomie" work. The gopher even
provides for an easy downloading function for BBF articles [although I
can't get it to work myself yet -- tried everything, Danielle, the
"pipe" may be over - crowded? -- anyone's advice here would be much

All this is further indication of France's continuing and national
commitment to establishing and maintaining a leading role in networked
information.  The ENSSIB's entry, moreover, promises a role for the
much - valued French capacity to theorize: theory has been so lacking,
so far, in the explosive growth of the Internet juggernaut -- perhaps
the ENSSIB Website will prompt a few French minds to offer some over -
arching insights into what all this technical and commercial
information development means.

Fe'licitations, Danielle Roger and all of the team at the ENSSIB and
the universite' de Lyon I, on the development of a very promising

2.0 _All_ of France on the Internet in 1996 (?)

A recent posting to BIBLIO-FR, the French librarians' e - conference,
describes a meeting, chaired by the country's Prime Minister, which
decided to put the Internet within reach of all French citizens, in a
program to begin before the end of the year and for the cost of a local
telephone call: any other countries proceeding so boldly? --

(the following is my own translation of a - posting - to - BIBLIO-FR -
of - a - posting - to - ADBS-INFO - of - a - posting - to - EDUFRANCAIS
- of a press release of the French Ministry of Information Technologies
and of the Post Office: the Internet can be a confusing place, and
obtaining corroboration which is timely is increasingly difficult in a
byte - possessed world -- the consulate does say that the Minister said
that it happened, but they are reorganizing the government over there
too, so caveat lector -- what follows makes fascinating reading for
those interested in different approaches to implementing Cyberspace)

"Inter - Ministerial Committee on the Autoroutes and Services of

The Inter - Ministerial Committee for Autoroutes and Services of
Information met on October 16, 1995, the Prime Minister presiding, and
made the following decisions, as proposed by F. Fillon, the Minister of
Information Technologies and of the Post Office:

1) The in - depth examination of the 635 proposals submitted since the
call for proposals made at the beginning of 1995 now permits the
identification of 170 projects as 'projects in the public interest', on
which work has begun or will begin soon. Among these are 7 projects in
administration, 6 in audio - visual applications, 11 in culture, 15 in
finance, 6 in media, 5 in research, 6 in health, 27 in education, 2 in
tourism and 6 in transportation.

National experimentation platforms will be launched, and 30 regional
experiments, which will be able to accommodate numerous experimental
services projects. These experimentation platforms cover the entire
country: there will be at least one platform in each region. France
Telecom is involved in 11 of them: the national ATM network, 4 sites
for experimental installation of fiber optics for 20,000 homes each
from now until 1997 (Bourges, Narbonne, Paris, Rennes), 6 sites for
ISDN (Numeris) experimentation involving 3,000 connections for each
(Bordeaux, Clermont - Ferrand, Grenoble, Le Mans, Reims, Toulouse).

The two other large national projects are RENATER II -- the new
generation of the national network for technology, education and
research, intended for research centers, establishments of higher
education, universities and private firms, from now through the end of
1996 -- and the RENATER project to connect high schools, middle
schools, and elementary schools from 13 national centers by the end of
1995. Regional governments are supporting 12 large regional experiment
platforms, and private firms are supporting 8 regional platforms. The
establishment of 194 [regional] projects will continue through the end
of 1995.

2) Among the projects which appear to be the most innovative, a certain
number (notably over half of the regional projects outside of those of
France Telecom) cannot be put into operation within existing
regulations, and require changes to telecommunications or audiovisual
laws and regulations.

The Government therefore has decided to submit, before the end of this
year, legislation which will enable these projects. This legislation
will be presented to the Council of Ministers on November 15. It will
propose the establishment of a structure of experimental licenses,
which will permit the suspension of existing laws and regulations, for
a strictly - limited period and in limited geographic areas. This will
be reserved to a small number of projects of general interest, giving
regard to their innovative character, their administrative structure,
and their financial viability.

This will permit experimental use of the cable networks for multimedia
services, including telephony, new services and advanced functionality
of teleport telecommunication, technologies of ["diffusion numerique
terrestre"? -- help with technical translation here will be much
appreciated], ["celle de la diffusion multiplexee sur canal micro -
ondes (MMDS)"?] which can be complementary to cable in rural zones, and
services available to individual users (video - on - demand...).

3) The financing of the most innovative projects is favored by research
and development funds from the Ministry of Information Technologies and
the Post Office. 48 projects will receive the 50 million francs [US$10
million] still available in 1995. An allocation of 300 million francs
[US$60 million], of which 100 million francs [US$20 million] are
reserved for PME [Petites et Moyennes Entreprises: French legal /
economic policy term - of - art -- but, very generally, "small
businesses"] through ANVAR [Agence Nationale de Valorisation de la
Recherche], is promised to the project in 1996 in the budget of the
Ministry of Information Technologies and of the Post Office, to further
support innovative projects.

[A US note: that 1996 figure alone is well over double the size of the
US$24 million devoted to the NSF Digital Library projects -- this is
for a country with a population the size of several large US states.
And I wonder myself how the US will be handling the "PME" question?:
SBA / Small Business Admin. didn't receive much NSF funding in the
past. I am not sure that SBA even exists anymore -- certainly not today
(Nov.15), but then the Library of Congress is out of business today too
-- and there won't even be a Department of Commerce for NSF to give
money to in the future, I understand, even if they wanted to. grump.]

4) The Ministry of Information Technologies and the Post Office and the
Ministry of Culture have decided to pool their resources to support the
publication of multimedia products destined for online distribution, by
creating a fund for the support of the publication of multimedia
products online which will contain 30 million francs (US$6 million) and
also will support optical disk publication (CDROM).

5) Minister Fillon has proposed the objective of making access to the
Internet for everyone in France possible, rapidly, at an attractive and
uniform price throughout the country. France Telecom will offer to
Internet service providers, before the end of 1995 and at the cost of a
local call, a service for general public access across the entire
country. Each French person will be able to reach his or her Internet
service provider at the price of a local call.

6) Regarding the regulation of encryption, Minister Fillon said during
the meeting that the use of encryption to protect a password, an access
code, a subscription number, or a credit card number, in providing for
authentication, would require only a simple declaration by the service
provider at the place of service, and not a formal legal notice.

7) Recognizing the lack of multimedia terminals in France, the Prime
Minister asked Minister Fillon to present to him, within three months,
measures designed to equip households and firms with multimedia

Internet access for everyone in France, soon, at the cost of a local
telephone call? Well... Oracle's Larry Ellison did say at Comdex last
weekend that his $500 Internet box will be out next Spring -- so, no
more $3000 computers? -- and France is already entirely wired with
fiber optics, and does already have a population already networked -
information - trained on the Minitel...

Lest anyone feel sceptical about France's role in innovation, this is
the country which implemented its Minitel, now long ago -- as then -
advertised and on - schedule, and not cost - effective for many years
thereafter -- and this is the country which actually opens its new
national library building next year: also not cost - effectively,
perhaps, but then, le panache c'est tout.

As their former president said in ordering his library, "I want this
thing and I shall have it" [loose American translation]: the French
will have their Internet. One wonders when and how _average_ citizens
in other countries -- citizens not blessed with advanced college
degrees and / or 6 - figure incomes -- will come to enjoy such
universal information access?


FYIFrance (sm)(tm) e - newsletter        ISSN 1071 - 5916 
      |           FYIFrance (sm)(tm) is a monthly electronic newsletter,
      |           published since 1992 as a small - scale, personal,
      |           experiment, in the creation of large - scale
      |           "information overload", by Jack Kessler. Any material
     / \          written by me which appears in FYIFrance may be
    -----         copied and used by anyone for any good purpose, so
   //   \\        long as, a) they give me credit and show my e - mail
  ---------       address and, b) it isn't going to make them money: if
 //       \\      if it is going to make them money, they must get my
                  permission in advance, and share some of the money
which they get with me. Use of material written by others requires
their permission. FYIFrance archives may be reached online at
http://infolib.berkeley.edu , or via gopher to infolib.berkeley.edu 72
(path: 3. Electronic Journals (Library-Oriented)/ 6. FYIFrance/ or
http://www.univ-rennes1.fr/LISTES/biblio-fr@univ-rennes1.fr/ (BIBLIO-FR
econference archive), or  gopher.well.sf.ca.us , or via telnet to
a.cni.org , login  brsuser (PACS / PACS-L econference archive).
Suggestions, reactions, criticisms, praise, and poison - pen letters
all will be gratefully received at kessler@well.sf.ca.us .

        Copyright 1992- by Jack Kessler, all rights reserved. 
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Last update: January 12, 1997.