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The chief executive officer of Apple Computer, Inc. has hinted that the company may soon loosen its traditionally strong grip on its proprietary computer rating systems to permit greater compatibility with machines manufactured by other companies.

John A. Sculley, chairman of the company, told software publishers at a meeting in San Francisco last week that in the near future Apple may share some of its key technologies with other firms, according to an account in the Los Angeles Times.

An Apple spokesman could not confirm the substance of Mr. Sculley's remarks, but did not contradict the published reports.

Such a move would indicate that Apple might be taking important steps toward the "open-systems" concept embraced by many computer makers, most notably the company's primary rival, the International Business Machines Corporation.

The open-systems approach has resulted in the production of millions of so-called "clones," or personal computers that are compatible with the standard operating software used in machines manufactured by i.b.m. Apple, on the other hand, while a leader in education applications, is widely viewed as having hobbled its potential for growth by refusing to allow third parties to clone its highly respected Macintosh computers.

The newspaper reported that while Mr. Sculley did not directly state that Apple would license its technology or allow third-party production of the Macintosh, he did acknowledge that the firm will have to abandon its existing policies in order to maintain a competitive edge in the market.


An expert in educational technology who is writing a book on distance learning is seeking the advice of educators who have successfully solicited funds to establish or support such projects. The book, Funding for Distance Education Projects, a joint project of Virginia A. Ostendorf, Inc. and the Public Service

Satellite Consortium, will identify and describe funding sources in corporations, agencies, foundations, and other organizations.

The book is "sorely needed," Ms. Ostendorf said, because many potential users of the increasingly popular approach, including schools, do not have sufficient funds to launch new projects.

Among the chapters to be "Preparing Successful Grant Applications," "Learning the Basics," and "Success Stories."

The book is scheduled to be published in May and is expected to retail for 15.


Anyone with contributions for the volume should contact Virginia A. Ostendorf, Inc., P.O. Box 296, Littleton, Colo. 80161-2896; or call (303) 797- 3131.--pw

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