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The week ahead: Comdex mania

The mother of all tech trade shows will commence in Las Vegas with an all-star lineup of speakers. In addition, tech giants Hewlett-Packard and Applied Materials will report earnings.

    Following are some of the notable tech-related events scheduled for the week of Nov. 13 through Nov. 17.

    Comdex, the mother of all tech trade shows, will commence in Las Vegas this week with an all-star lineup of speakers. PC makers and software developers are expected to show off new products that will be released over the next year.

    Attendees at this year's conference will be able to catch a glimpse of the new Pentium 4 computers and are likely to see an explosion of handheld devices. Conferencegoers will also listen closely to speakers for insight about demand in the PC and chip markets.

    Speakers will include Microsoft chairman Bill Gates, Hewlett-Packard CEO Carly Fiorina, Dell Computer CEO Michael Dell, Oracle CEO Larry Ellison and Eastman Kodak CEO Daniel Carp.

    Also this week, the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) will meet in Marina Del Rey, Calif. The board is expected to approve new top-level domains to supplement ".com," ".net" and ".org."

    Meanwhile, tech giants HP and Applied Materials will announce their quarterly earnings results.

    The information was gathered from First Call/Thomson Financial, Hoover's Online, CCBN's StreetEvents and CNET Investor.

    Other events scheduled this week:

    Tech Events

    Monday, Nov. 13

    • The Webnoize 2000 conference will take place at the Century Plaza Hotel in Los Angeles Nov. 13-15. The conference will address ways the film and music industries are working to maintain and grow their businesses and use new technologies in a controversial climate. Speakers will include Recording Industry Association of America CEO Hilary Rosen and Jack Valenti, CEO of the Motion Picture Association of America.

    • The Dreamweaver Conference 2000 will take place Nov. 13-14 at the Monterey Conference Center in Monterey, Calif. The conference is intended for people who use Macromedia's Dreamweaver Web-authoring software.

    • Comdex/Fall 2000 will take place Nov. 13-17 at the MGM Grand and the Las Vegas Hilton in Las Vegas. The four-day conference will feature Microsoft chairman Bill Gates, Hewlett-Packard CEO Carly Fiorina, Dell CEO Michael Dell, Oracle CEO Larry Ellison and Eastman Kodak CEO Daniel Carp. Throughout the event's history, keynoters have used Comdex as a venue for announcing partnerships, strategies and products.

    • ICANN board members will meet at the Marina Beach Marriott in Marina del Ray, Calif., Nov. 13-16. The board is expected to approve new top-level domains to supplement ".com," ".net" and ".org."

    • Satellite Communications Fundamentals for Non-Technical Professionals will take place at the The Ritz Millennia Hotel in Singapore. The two-day event will provide information for non-technical professionals in understanding satellite communications.

    • The E-Business Integration Conference will take place at the Hilton New York Hotel. The conference will discuss challenges facing the business-to-business industry.

    • The Unified Communications conference will take place at the Sheraton Hotel in Phoenix. The conference will focus on how corporations can use communication technologies including Wireless Application Protocols (WAP), instant messaging and real-time call management.

    • The Thomas Weisel Partners Next Generation Media conference will take place at the St. Regis Hotel in New York. The conference will consider the importance of the Internet for traditional media companies. Participating companies will include Microsoft, RealNetworks, Liberate Technologies, Akamai, Cisco Systems, Yahoo and TiVo.

    Tuesday, Nov. 14
    • The 12th Annual National Conference on the Securities Industry will take place at the New York Hilton and Towers in New York. The two-day event will cover issues relevant to accounting, tax, regulatory and financial professionals.

    • Tech Talk Live Series will feature Sky Dayton, chairman of EarthLink Network, discussing "Inventing Internet Industrials" at the Omni Los Angeles Hotel in Los Angeles.

    • The Wireless E-Commerce and Security Conference will take place at the Hilton Alexandria Mark Center in Alexandria, Va. This conference will focus on security issues in the wireless industry.

    • U.S. Bancorp Piper Jaffray's second annual Internet investor conference, "Blazing Trails in a New Environment," will take place at the Hilton Boston Logan Airport Hotel in Boston. The conference will feature more than 140 public and private technology companies, each of which will make 30-minute presentations over three days.

    Wednesday, Nov. 15

    • The 2000 Conference on Information Technology will take place at the Anaheim Convention Center Nov. 15-18. The conference will focus on the use of information technology to improve teaching, student services and institutional management in community and two-year colleges.

    Thursday, Nov. 16

    Earnings

    Monday, Nov. 13

    • ICG Communications provides local and long-distance voice service in Colorado and several other states. Per-share consensus estimate: loss of $3.10.

    • Network-1 Security Solutions makes software to protect a company's network from internal and external security breaches. Per-share consensus estimate: N/A.

    • WebMD is a Web site featuring health-related information, news and services. Per-share consensus estimate: loss of 22 cents.

    Tuesday, Nov. 14

    • FirstWorld Communications offers Internet access, Web site design, Web hosting and other services. Per-share consensus estimate: loss of $1.02.

    • BEA Systems makes servers and software that integrates e-commerce applications with older networks and software. Per-share consensus estimate: 6 cents.

    • Sycamore Networks makes optical networking products that let network service providers upgrade their fiber-optic networks to offer more bandwidth. Per-share consensus estimate: 1 cent.

    Wednesday, Nov. 15
    • Hewlett-Packard is the third-largest computer maker in the world. Per-share consensus estimate: 52 cents.

    • Applied Materials makes equipment used in semiconductor factories. Per-share consensus estimate: 76 cents.

    Economic Reports

    Tuesday, Nov. 14

    • Retail Sales for the month of October are expected to fall 0.1 percent compared with September's gain of 0.9 percent. Excluding automobile sales, Wall Street expects retail sales to climb 0.3 vs. the previous month's gain of 0.7 percent.

    Wednesday, Nov. 15
    • The Federal Open Market Committee, the policy-setting arm of the Federal Reserve, meets to discuss interest rates. The general consensus on Wall Street is that interest rates will not be changed.

    • Business Inventories represents the percentage change in the amount of goods in inventory in the United States as reported by the Department of Commerce. Wall Street predicts that this number will rise 0.3 percent in September vs. a 0.7 percent jump in August.

    • Industrial Production represents the monthly percentage change in industrial output from the Federal Reserve. The number is expected to rise 0.1 percent for the month of October compared with last month's rise of 0.2 percent.

    • The monthly Capacity Utilization report from the Federal Reserve indicates the percentage of industrial capacity in use. Wall Street expects the number to fall to 82 percent in October from the previous month's 82.2 percent.

    Thursday, Nov. 16
    • The Consumer Price Index is expected to rise 0.2 percent in October from last month's rise of 0.5 percent. The core PPI, which excludes food and energy prices, is expected to rise 0.2 percent from September's 0.3 percent increase. This Labor Department index tracks the change in prices at the consumer level.

    • The Philadelphia Federal Reserve's monthly Business Outlook Survey is a survey of manufacturers in the Third Federal Reserve District that tracks the direction of change in overall business activity at their plants. Wall Street expects the index to decline 1 percent for the month of November. Last month, business activity fell 3.8 percent.

    Friday, Nov. 17
    • Housing Starts are expected to reach 1.55 million for October, up from 1.53 million last month, as reported by the Department of Commerce.

    Also this week

    • Salesforce.com is expected to announce that Yahoo has selected it as the only provider of sales-force automation services for its small-business customers.

    • HP is expected to unveil the wireless-capable OmniBook 500 notebook at the Comdex trade show in Las Vegas.