Judges Narrow Field to 60 Nominees

LOS ANGELES, CA, NOVEMBER 12, 1996 - Judges in the 1996 National Information Infrastructure Awards program, the world's leading forum for the recognition of extraordinary achievement on the information highway, have announced Finalists in the competition to find the country's best uses of the Internet and related communication technologies.

The 60 Finalists represent the most creative and beneficial applications of the information highway in 10 different categories that touch on all areas of America's work, play and community life. The winners will be announced at a major awards ceremony to be held December 3, in New York City. A complete list of Finalists is available at the NII Website,

"All these Finalists have something important to teach us about how communications technology and the information infrastructure can be used to improve the health and well-being of people everywhere, in every aspect of our work, play and community relationships," said James Hake, Chairman of the NII Awards Program. "More than anything else, our hope is that the NII Awards will recognize leaders in this new digital communication age who can help educate and inspire others about the immeasurable potential presentedby the Internet and related technologies."

Nominees in the NII Awards Program range from powerful corporations, to entrepreneurs, to grassroots community organizations to individuals. They are competing for awards in Arts and Entertainment, Business, Children,Community, Education, Next Generation, Government and Health, and in two special awards, the NII Public Access Awards, sponsored by the U.S. Postal Service, and the NII Telecollaboration Award, sponsored by AT&T. Categories are presided over by separate panels of judges comprised of recognized experts in each area.

The program is made possible by a wide range of supporters, including IBM,one of the pioneering organizations of the Information Age, and the sponsor of this year's Awards ceremony.

"IBM is delighted to support the NII Awards," said Irving Wladawsky-Berger, general manager of IBM's Internet Division. "The NII Awards recognizes leaders who have successfully applied network technology and addresses issues of how the entire society works with and organizes itself around information in a connected world. We believe that the most important role of the Internet and network technology is to solve problems, create opportunities and enhance value, for business and for the community at large."

This year's NII Awards Finalists display an impressive range of talents and solutions.Participants include publishers of online magazines and newspapers, designers of children- and teenager-oriented World Wide Web sites, manufacturers of semiconductors, teachers, scientists and community organizers.

"This is the second time I've been a judge in the NII Awards program, and again I've found the whole process fascinating," said Bob Lambert, senior vice president for new technology and new media at the Walt Disney Company."I'm amazed by the depth and breadth of the entries--so many surprising things have popped out of the woodwork of America from both small groups and large organizations that have developed some truly clever applications of the information infrastructure."

Only two years old, the NII Awards Program has emerged as the most important competition for the recognition of information highway uses, and has won praise from a broad range of industry and community leaders, including Vice President Al Gore, who cited the NII's efforts to reward and showcase these especially beneficial uses of the information highway.

The Awards program itself has proved an overwhelming success: the 850 entrants that responded to this year's call for submissions represented a 50 percent increase over last year. Last year's winners ranged from the Alzheimer's Disease Support Center on the Cleveland Free-Net, to the National Materials Exchange Network, to the HotWired online magazine.

The expanded interest in this second year of the NII Awards reflects the continued explosive growth of the Internet and other kinds of networking technologies through all sectors of society, added the NII's Hake. "With new possibilities and potential applications being discovered every day, it's more important than ever that we recognize the best and hold them up as models of smart business and public benefit."

Perhaps most importantly, the NII Awards Program is a forum that brings together people from all areas of business and society who need more effective ways to trade ideas and experience about information highway projects, said Hake.

The NII Awards are supported by more than 70 sponsors. Corporate sponsors of the 1996 NII Awards include AT&T, IBM, the U.S. Postal Service, BellSouth, Sun Microsystems, Lotus, Netscape, CompuServe, Fujitsu, PriceWaterhouse, BBN, SRI Consulting, US WEST and Tandem Computers.

Media sponsors include TIME, Business Week, Business Communications Review, Business Wire, EE Times, Electronic Learning, Federal Computer Week, Government Technology, Hospitals and Health Networks, Inter@ctive Week, Internet World, Modern Healthcare, Network World, Telecommunications, PCWeek and Web Week.

Sponsoring organizations include the U.S. Information Infrastructure TaskForce, the C. Everett Koop Institute, The Morino Institute, the AmericanMedical Association, the American Library Association, the NationalEducation Association, the American Film Institute, The Academy of Television Arts and Sciences, ISTE, NCTET, the National League of Cities,the National Association of Counties, the Council on Competitiveness, the National League of Women Voters, among others.

For more information about the NII Awards, please go to



  • CitySpace: Network Social Space of the Future
  • ESPNET SportsZone
  • Firefly; the personal entertainment source for the Web
  • JBW: A Random Walk through the Twentieth Century
  • TerraQuest: Virtual Expedtions on the World Wide Web


  • A&a Printers Print Production Management System Counsel Connect
  • Firefly, the personal entertainment source for the web
  • National Semiconductor's Website for Design
  • Silicon Investor (Financial Online Service)
  • The Wall Street Journal Interactive Edition


  • Cyberteens
  • FACES of Adoption: America's Waiting Children
  • FreeZone: an intelligent online community for kids.
  • MidLink Magazine: A Web-Olution in the Global Classroom
  • The National Missing Children's Network


  • Charlotte's Web:Building Communities of Hope
  • Diversified Information and Assistance Network (DIANE)
  • East Palo Alto Gets Plugged In
  • GriefNet
  • SeniorNet
  • US EPA/USPS Environmental Recycling Hotline


  • American Memory: Library of Congress Historical Collections
  • CELLS alive!
  • The JASON VII Project Undersea Internet Site
  • NASA's K-12 Internet Initiative, NASA Ames Research Center
  • Odyssey in Egypt - The Interactive Archaeological Dig
  • Passport To Knowledge: Live From the Hubble Space Telescope


  • FEMA -- An Emergency Lane on the Information Superhighway
  • Minnesota Planning World Wide Web Home Pages
  • NSF FastLane Project
  • Public Access to Labor Statistics (BLS LABSTAT)
  • SEDAC Access to U.S. Demographic Data.
  • U.S. Federal Government Information Locator Service (GILS)


  • Applied Informatics -- Using the NII to Coordinate Healthcare
  • Children With Diabetes Online Magazine
  • The Family Village Project
  • The Global Health Network
  • Join Together Online: Linking Communities Fighting Substance Abuse
  • OncoLink - An Internet-based Multimedia Cancer Information Resource


  • AQUARIUS: Home of the World's First Underwater Web
  • I-WAY: Prototyping the Next Generation Internet
  • North Carolina Information Highway (NCIH)
  • Pine Ridge-Mayo Telemedicine Project
  • Remote Experimental Environment in Fusion Energy Research


  • Community Technology Centers' Network (CTCNet) Public Access Program
  • - East Palo Alto Gets Plugged In
  • LinkNet: A Virtual Year On-Line
  • Ohio Public Library Information Network (OPLIN)
  • Seattle Public Access Network (PAN)
  • Web Access Project (WAP)


  • ARIES - ATM Research & Industrial Enterprise System
  • DIANE Diversified Information and Assistance Network
  • Electronic Cafe International
  • Fiber Weaves Indiana's Cultural and Education
  • Space Bridge to Russia Telemedicine Project
  • The Telegarden