The battle to be the top media company in cyberspace isn't being fought between New York and Hollywood moguls. This duel is between computer nerds in Dulles, Va., and Redmond, Wash.

Virginia-based America Online Inc. "relaunched" its service in September with a series of 30 street parties nationwide designed to highlight its new software. Rock musicians, clowns on stilts, and trailers packed with computers competed for the attention of AOL members and prospective customers.

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