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MIT Digital Time Capsule Captures Internet Business 1999

The MIT Sloan School in Cambridge, MA is launching its next-generation Web site and a new Internet curriculum initiative, along with a Digital Time Capsule that will be "sealed" in the cornerstone of the school's new Web site.

The capsule contains digitized representations, drawn from the Internet, of the people, places, products, events, trends and news shaping business and the Internet in early 1999. The contents have been encrypted into the capsule, which will be opened in 2004.

The capsule also contains dozens of predictions from scholars, entrepreneurs, public officials and celebrities, including Dean Richard Schmalensee, businessmen such as Kofi Annan and Bill Gates; scholars and inventors, even Martha Stewart offering their predictions about the Internet in 2004.

The Sloan School said it is making a dramatic statement that it is necessary to pause and consider where life on the Internet is headed, particularly in business terms. What seems dubious or impossible now may well be commonplace in five years.

"There is simply no question that one will marvel at how primitive some of these contents are and how suggestive they are about trends that subsequently overwhelmed society," the school said in a statement.

The new e-commerce and marketing curriculum is an MBA program track that will be ready for student enrollment by the fall semester 1999, and is part of a new multi-disciplinary research and education program on electronic commerce and marketing being developed by Sloan.

"The extraordinary advancement of information technology in home and business along with the exploding use of the Internet are transforming management in general and marketing in particular," said Schmalensee. ". . .The school is in an ideal position to bring together the expertise at MIT with students and industry partners to advance both the understanding and practice of electronic commerce."

The new MBA management track, the educational component of the program, will be added to the seven such tracks now offered at Sloan. A unique concept in business education, the tracks are comprised of an interdisciplinary mix of courses along with exposure to industry practices. Other tracks include New Product and Venture Development, Financial Engineering, and Strategic Management and Consulting.