CANNES, France - Feb. 16, 2000 - El St John, founder and CEO of SilverTech Inc., announced today the launch of the first patented Private Internet Engine (PIE). This cutting edge technology will change the way businesses and private individuals use the Internet. SilverTech Inc. has forged strategic relationships with the industry's leaders, including Hewlett-Packard Company, Cisco, AboveNet, Ask Jeeves and Headbone Interactive - each of which will make a valuable contribution to the eKids Internet, to bring eKids Internet to the world. With the intent to ensure a completely user-friendly system, the highest level of safety and the most comprehensive content available, SilverTech is proud to release the first-ever private Internet network for kids.
"From hardware and software to content and security, we wanted to create the safest, most comprehensive and technologically advanced private network - specifically for kids - that is imaginative, fun and educational," said St. John. "Our relationships reflect the utmost in quality that the private eKids Internet provides its users."
Providing concerned parents with a safe, fun, educational environment where their children can play, learn and communicate with children from around the globe, the eKids Internet is a great alternative to the unmonitored World Wide Web. Its interactive entertaining and educational environment for kids offers all of the benefits of the public Internet in its own private network where children can play freely in the protected atmosphere.
HP plans to provide SilverTech with $15 million in financial backing through a $1 million equity investment and a $14 million convertible debt arrangement. A portion of the $15 million financing will be used to expand SilverTech's technology infrastructure. The eKids and other SilverTech networks will be powered exclusively by HP 9000 Enterprise Servers. Custom eKids content, as well as qualified, edited content sourced from the World Wide Web, will be cached and stored on HP storage products. HP is also providing consulting and network integration services as well as mission-critical support.
"The eKids Internet is a wonderful environment for young people - an environment that provides opportunities for play, education and communication with peers from around the world," said Craig White, senior vice president and general manager of HP Technology Finance. "We want to share in its success and be part of an initiative that makes computers a fun place to learn."
"We are thrilled that SilverTech is a certified Cisco Powered Network building its infrastructure strength with Cisco's market leading Internet Protocol (IP) networking products," said Kevin Outcalt, senior director of service provider marketing for Cisco. "As SilverTech develops the first private network for kids, it will use New World technologies to bring to its customers the highest level of network performance, reliability and security."
As the architect of the global one-hop network and a leading provider of Internet connectivity and co-location solutions for high-bandwidth and business critical applications, AboveNet will assist the eKids Internet in operating as its own Internet Service Provider. To do so, AboveNet has developed the world's first Internet Service Exchange® (ISX®) as a unique and powerful network designed for everyone who does business on the Internet. Using a centralized network topology, the ISX brings together Internet Service Providers (ISPs) and content providers in a lightning-fast networked environment. Unlike simple Internet server farms, the unique architecture of the ISX expedites the delivery of content to end users while reducing the potential for packet loss in its direct one-hop network environment.
"eKids is providing a much needed service for children to safely access the Internet through media rich content, applications and chat rooms. Access to high-quality, scalable bandwidth is vital for the continued success of these types of applications," said Tesh Durvasula, director of sales for AboveNet. "Our global network will enable eKids to scale on demand as their user base grows worldwide. We are delighted to provide eKids with a solution that improves the quality of the online experience for children of all ages."
Ask Jeeves Corporate Service will work with SilverTech to make the eKids Internet a friendly place to find answers - quickly and easily. Kids will be able to type questions into an easy-to-use query box and be immediately directed to Web sites with the answers. Ask Jeeves will help the eKids Internet build a Web site conducive to the needs of young adults, which simultaneously helps them achieve their business goals: customer loyalty, increased e-commerce and reduced support costs.
"Jeeves Answers will help the eKids Internet foster a more human environment on the private network where kids can ask questions naturally, the way they would ask their parent or their teacher," said Rob Wrubel, president and CEO of Ask Jeeves.
Headbone Interactive will implement safe, live monitored chat as part of the new eKids Internet. A destination website for kids, families, and schools, The Headbone Zone will be providing eKids with its award winning HBZ Chat Engine and monitoring services. This proprietary chat engine will offer such benefits as a capacity of up to 50 simultaneous users per room, filtering, live real-time monitoring and auto messaging. The chat room interfaces have been customized specifically for SilverTech and are accessible solely through its safe branded private network. All chat and conference rooms will be monitored to protect users from unsafe exchanges of personal information such as email addresses, telephone numbers and home addresses as well as from inappropriate language or behavior. Monitors will have the ability to suspend chat capabilities for users abusing their privileges.
"We are very pleased to enter this partnership with SilverTech which affirms our ideals of building a compelling and safe environment for kids," said Susan Lammers, founder and chairman of Headbone Interactive. "This is a great opportunity to be able to provide kids around the globe with the tools to communicate with one another in a safe manner within our monitored chat rooms."
SilverTech Inc., creator of Private Internet Engine (PIE) technology, was founded in February 2000 by former telecommunications executive El St. John to bring private networks initially to kids, and then to government agencies, private industries, individuals and communities of interest around the world. Playing a major role in the convergence of the entertainment industry and computer technology, SilverTech's patented technology is easily transferable to other vertical private environments and will be customized and licensed for private networks globally. The eKids Internet, the world's first and currently the only private Internet network created specifically for kids is SilverTech's inaugural effort using its PIE technology.
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