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We know who the suitor is for CompuServe's Spry

CompuServe has been talking about divorcing its Spry software group for a while now, and the venerable online service may have finally found someone to take the group--which produces Internet Office, Spry Web Server, and other Net goodies--off its hands.

Well, John John managed to keep the nuptials hush hush, but his wedding is bringing up more than one issue for me here at home. Besides missing the story, John Jr.'s marriage has started Grandma DuBaud pressuring me to get hitched. Finding the right woman that son Vermel will also approve of is easier said than done though. Few strangers, let alone spouses, would tolerate our slovenly ways. The eye of the storm is my computer workstation, which sucks all cleanliness into it like light to a black hole. Before marriage, Vermel and I need to divorce our bad habits.

CompuServe has been talking about divorcing its Spry software group for a while now, and the venerable online service may have finally found someone to take the group--which produces Internet Office, Spry Web Server, and other Net goodies--off its hands. The leading suitor for the Spry group is corporate software developer Wall Data. CompuServe is also thinking about jettisoning the entire Spry division, including the SpryNet Internet access service, to cut costs and overlap between services.

Overlap is a major theme around the messy DuBaud household. Through some combination of profligacy and amnesia, Vermel and I end up with three of everything: three computers, three mountain bikes, three Internet service providers. When I threaten to tighten the purse strings, the kid calls me a cheapskate and hypocrite.

You usually can't please kids, but you can never please users of hard drive peripherals. For example, Iomega has ticked off a bunch of Zip drive users by holding back on a $50 rebate for the product. Usenet is smoldering with posts from users who haven't gotten their money or the handy-dandy Zip drive carrying case that was promised with the disk drive.

Controversy is also familiar to Unisys, which caused a ruckus last year by claiming that products that use its LZW compression algorithm (which decodes GIF images) were in violation of a Unisys patent and needed to pay up. The company later diffused the brouhaha by exempting shareware developers with LZW software in their programs from the licensing fee. Now, Unisys is telling developers that they don't allow freeware products with LZW anymore. The company is even giving commercial developers who want to sell their products to ISPs a hard time.

Speaking of hard time, what are my odds of landing a soul mate who will put up with my obsession of digging dirt? Hey, I can give you the inside dope on the odds if you send me a juicy tidbit.