Life After CIO
Gail Farnsley, CIO of Cummins, is leaving her post to create and oversee a new technology education effort at Purdue University. So there is life after the CIO position, after all.
Build-A-PC Chronicles: Reviving A Dusty Old Case
Embarking on a PC construction project is the opposite of building a new relationship. With the latter, the first flush of discovery is the fun part. In contrast, gathering up all the components for the computer is an expensive drag. Nothing is less enticing than picking out a case. The difference nowadays is that the PC's enclosure used to be an afterthought. Now, with hot-running modern processors, it's cri
Where's Your Credit Card Data?
PCI regulations require companies to protect credit card numbers. But first you have to know where they are. Here's what I've learned from retailers and PCI auditors about step one of PCI compliance.
AMD's Bug-Free Barcelona Is Ahead Of Schedule
System builders and end-users still troubled over the fallout from the bug in AMD's quad-core Barcelona and Phenom processors can take comfort from some good news. Sources close to AMD tell me that the new B3 stepping, which corrects the problems via a silicon fix, is ahead of schedule and things are looking good. Here are the details.
What Matters Most About Your Job In Uncertain Times?
Do you expect your paycheck to grow much fatter this year? Maybe you're just glad you get a paycheck, especially with all the gloom and doom about the economy. If that's the case, then maybe other job traits or perks -- besides money -- are moving higher up on your priority list right now when it comes to work.
Bill Gates For Senate
Nostradamus I'm not. Most of my past tech-industry predictions have fallen flat: Sun Microsystems didn't buy Apple, Apple hasn't acquired Motorola, and OS/2 never beat out Windows. But here's one prognostication you can take to the bank: Sometime after he retires from Microsoft, when being a world-class philanthropist begins to get a wee bit boring, Bill Gates will run for public office.
Best Buy Creates International CIO Position
Electronics retailer Best Buy has tapped a former Accenture consultant as the new CIO of its international division. In today's global economy, is an international CIO a necessity or a redundancy?
iPhone 1.1.3 Update Raises Text-Messaging Bug
The latest iPhone firmware update, pushed out by Apple in mid-January, is raising a raft of bug reports on Apple's own iPhone forums, with dozens of posters complaining that it messes up SMS (text message) conversations, causing them to appear out of order. The glitch is all the more vexing given that the 1.1.3 update was supposed to help iPhone users send SMS messages to multiple people. For Apple's part, it has posted a support document admitting that "SMS messages may be displayed in the wron
AMD Won't Comment On IBM Takeover Reports
The latest chatter surrounding AMD is talk of a possible acquisition by IBM. That thread began making its way around on Wednesday, via a Reuters story quoting a Wall Street Analyst. AMD, for its part, told me it won't comment. My take is that acquisition isn't in the cards right now, but it's highly likely that AMD and IBM will expand their already existing partnership, which began in 2003 when the two joined forces on the development of 65-nm chip-fabrication technology.
The CIO And The Consumer Effect, Part 2
The problem with a tech savvy public is that its expectations concerning immediate and direct interaction have been raised, and that puts a burden on companies to be more connected electronically with their customers, partners, and employees. But companies are slow to accommodate that trend, much less exploit it, according to the results of a new survey by Accenture.
Intel Blog Warns Of Multicore Crisis
No, it's not what you think. There's no hardware problem with dual- and quad-core processors. The alarm an Intel blogger has sounded is a warning to software developers. This doesn't make it any less serious; here's the deal.
Leaky Nuke Lab Is Poor Endorsement For A Security Product
A new startup has licensed technology from Los Alamos National Laboratory to help enterprises respond to security incidents. But does the company really want to be associated with a lab that routinely mishandles nuclear weapons secrets?
InformationWeek Adds First Facebook Apps
You've asked for it; you've been waiting for it. Well, even if that's not true, we've got some new -- and possibly even useful -- apps for all you dedicated Facebook time-wasters out there. Our first two Facebook apps are the InformationWeek Blog Update and the InformationWeek News Update.
LAN Gaming Picks IdentiPHI
LAN Gaming selects IdentiPHI SAFsolutionR for biometric-based user authentication and parental controls
5 MacBook (Hot) Air Alternatives
The MacBook (Hot) Air is the usual triumph of wannabe coolness over value. But once we get away from the self-congratulatory Apple polishers, who pat themselves on the back for recognizing how "insanely great" Steve Jobs is -- while conspicuously advertising they've got the dough to purchase another toy, one without a DVD drive, yet -- most of us want a computer we can live with for business and leisure. That means a Windows machine. Fortunately, there are some nice ultra-portables out there.
IT's 'Self-Fulfilling Prophecy'
Whether or not we're already mired in a tech talent shortage, the United States needs to commit itself to producing a deeply knowledgeable and highly motivated IT workforce or we will find ourselves without the expertise needed to keep our tech industry competitive, says Stevens Institute's Jerry Luftman.
Boeing 777 Near-Disaster: Can Anyone On Board Fly This Thing?
It's every passenger's worst nightmare: You're cruising along at 30,000 feet when the lights suddenly go out and the engines quit. The cockpit crew has been struck down by food poisoning. A terrified stewardess (sorry, "flight attendant") yells out: "Is there a pilot on board?" OK, that's a bad movie plot. But what happened in London on Thursday is actually scarier, and would've been a huge disaster, if not for the hero pilot.
Microsoft Looks To New CIO To 'Share Best Practices'
As expected, Microsoft named Tony Scott, former Disney CIO and GM CTO, as its new CIO today. What does Scott, an IT veteran, bring to the table that Microsoft might be looking for? Perhaps an ability to connect with other CIOs.
Wal-Mart Breathes New Life Into RFID
If you thought Wal-Mart was backing off from its big RFID plans, think again. Wal-Mart recently notified, in writing, suppliers of its Sam's Club warehouse stores that it will charge a $2 service fee for pallets of goods that aren't tagged with RFID starting Jan. 30. Suppliers of Wal-Mart stores shouldn't be surprised if they get a letter with some sort of financial incentive to comply with RFID, too.
Microsoft To Name New CIO
Microsoft is expected to name a new CIO today, according to sources both of the blog and word-of-mouth variety. He's Tony Scott, most recently CIO of Disney.
The $50 Billion Health IT Project
If there's one thing most presidential candidates agree on, it's that many more doctors must deploy e-health systems to reduce health care costs and improve care in the United States. But one candidate is proposing a whopping $50 billion, five-year investment to make that happen. That would be an enormous shift from what the feds have spent so far on these programs.
AMD Quad-Core Barcelona Gets Big Boost From Little-Known Benchmarks
Amid the battering AMD has taken in recent months, ranging from processor bugs to sagging finances, I've discovered what's sure to be some welcome news: A bunch of under-the-radar benchmark tests run by a respected tech guy, which puts AMD's quad-core Opteron (aka Barcelona) processor in a great light. Moreover, he gives AMD's new native-quad architecture a rave review, identifying what he believes are the technical reasons for its strong performance.
Are You A Snob When You Hire?
Who would be a better match for your IT organization -- a job candidate with some tech skills and a bachelor's degree in history, or an individual who has an associate's degree in a technology-related field? Maybe the answer is neither. Perhaps you'd throw out both résumés. But exactly how important is any degree on paper versus hands-on experience?
HP CEO Mark Hurd: 'Aligning IT With The Business Is Hard'
Hewlett-Packard is attempting a radical makeover of its IT infrastructure and processes. The tech vendor's hard-charging chief executive is totally supportive of it. Indeed, he helped conceive the project, along with his handpicked CIO, Randy Mott, and he's counting on it to lower the company's cost structure. But even Hurd admits a project of this magnitude is easier said than done.
MySpace Child Protections Have Fatal Flaw
Kudos to MySpace for making an honest attempt to police itself and protect its underage users. There's just one problem -- the plan has a hole you could drive a virtual truck through.
Is Podcasting Dead?
Podcasting was famously born in 2000, with Tristan Louis, Dave Winer, and former MTV veejay and legend in his own mind Adam Curry variously crystallizing the concept and creating a market for audio files encapsulated in RSS feeds. Now, it's 2008 and time to admit that the actual uptake of podcasts by users hasn't, and never will, come close to the hype.
Giving Active Directory The Finger
Do you know who has permission to reset passwords, create accounts, and elevate permissions in your organization? Sanjay Tandon, a former Microsoft program manager of Active Directory, bets the answer will surprise -- and dismay -- your security and compliance officers.
Hard Facts To Fuel The IT Talent Shortage Debate
We've got a great debate posted with two top researchers over whether there's a U.S. IT talent shortage. If you're keen on fear-mongering and histrionics, this package isn't for you. If you want two serious scholars making succinct arguments backed up with facts, read on.
HP CIO Randy Mott: Incremental IT 'Just Doesn't Work'
Architected IT is the only way to achieve the most return on your technology investment, and a radical makeover is the only way to get to that rationalized approach to running a company's technology infrastructure, Hewlett-Packard CIO Mott told a group of rapt technology managers yesterday in Austin, Texas.
Clinton And McCain On Globalization, Technology
The morning after the Iowa caucus results, I shared with you what Mike Huckabee and Barack Obama are saying about technology and globalization. The focus has shifted over to Hillary Clinton and John McCain after the results in New Hampshire's primary. Here's what those presidential candidates have to say about those topics.
Are Young Techies Spoiled Brats?
Who has pickier job expectations, young people entering the tech field, or the employers who hire them? A new report released today says tech executives think millennials -- people between the ages of 18 and 31 -- are too fussy about pay and perks, and are the most difficult to manage.
Oops, Look At That Phoenix, Rising From The Ashes
In a story headlined, Open Source Code Contains Security Holes, I referred recently to the Firebird database project as "somewhat moribund." So imagine my surprise when a reader pointed out it was named project of the month in December by SourceForge, the dominant host of open source projects. Geez. Then there was the case of the supposedly "inactive" FreeBSD Unix.
Is Tech Talent Getting Harder To Find?
There were almost 300,000 new IT jobs last year, according to the latest figures from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. And that doesn't surprise Bob Keefe, new president of the Society for Information Management. He says talent issues are the top challenge these days for his fellow CIOs.
The CIO And The Consumer Effect
The chief technology officer of Washington, D.C., just got back from the Consumer Electronics Show and he's fired up. "Why is it that consumers have better technology in their hands than the enterprise space?" he asks.
The Startup Makeover?
NAC vendor Vernier Networks is apparently reinventing itself as a startup, despite being founded almost seven years ago. The company will rename itself Autonomic Networks and brand itself a Series A startup. It's an odd strategy, given that the company already has raised at least $35 million through A, B, and C funding rounds.
The CIO Agenda, 2008
What are the technology factors shaping the CIO agenda for 2008? Cost-cutting, again. More efficient technology and processes, like virtualization and third-party services. But what do these trends translate to in terms of CIOs' personal and professional goals? Two words: shape shifting.
Sex Ads Are Craigslist's Dirty Secret
Nowhere do the highest aspirations of the Internet and its sewer-dwellers come together in an unholy alliance like they do at Craigslist. On the one hand, the site is the uber-community of the online world, where anybody can connect for a job, apartment, or to sell their old junk. On the other hand, you see situations like the malicious, fake ad where someone posted a woman's name