Business Technology News and Commentary - InformationWeek
News & Commentary
Content tagged with Strategic CIO posted in October 2007
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Could Your Next ERP System Come From China?
Commentary  |  10/31/2007  | 
Ufida is a $150 million-a-year ERP company that's China's largest domestic enterprise software vendor. I talked with Ufida's VP of international business about its plan to come to the United States.
The Wall Street Journal's 10-Year-Old Advice For CIOs
Commentary  |  10/31/2007  | 
General Motors CIO Ralph Szygenda has a terrific track record, and he and his work were profiled yesterday in the Journal. But the Journal really laid an egg with the GM/Szygenda piece by presenting a circa 1996 snapshot of the CIO position and the role of business technology. So if you recognize yourself in the image of the CIO presented by the Journal story, be afraid --
Woops, Says Microsoft, Sorry for That Unauthorized Install
Commentary  |  10/30/2007  | 
IT managers who subscribe to Microsoft Windows Server Update Services program but didn't choose the automatic updates setting must have thought the desktops on their networks had taken a page from HAL.
Apple's Leopard Hacked So You Can Install It On Your PC, But Why Would You Want To?
Commentary  |  10/28/2007  | 
It took a less than 24 hours for an Apple enthusiast site to weigh in with a hack recipe on how to "install Leopard on your PC in 3 easy steps." The big question is, why would anyone want to, given that Windows Vista is almost -- but not quite -- as pretty as the latest incarnation of OS X. The answer, clearly, is to see if it can be done.
Second Life Lawsuit Over Cybersex Toy Theft
Commentary  |  10/28/2007  | 
You know it had to come to this eventually in the reality substitute called Second Life: Thieves are stealing virtual people's virtual crap, and reselling it to other avatars for real money. And when they're caught red-handed, they've got this great defense -- how can it be criminal, it's only a video game?
"Did I Mention It Was Free?"
Commentary  |  10/26/2007  | 
Scott McNealy took his "software wants to be free" act to the NICSA Technology Summit 2007 in Las Vegas, even featuring a showman's hypnotic cadence. And it was a fine presentation, if you believe one thing: Open Source = Sun Microsystems.
Facebook's Business Technology Future
Commentary  |  10/26/2007  | 
Doubtful that Facebook execs will lose too much sleep over what business IT teams want and need from social networking. But that's where last week's big Facebook hook-ups just might get interesting. Its new partners, Microsoft and Research In Motion, have a deep understanding of how business IT works.
The Next Generation Tech Worker
Commentary  |  10/26/2007  | 
CIOs need to decide: Where is the training going to come from -- self instruction, corporate programs, academia, or some combination thereof?
Mobile Business Expo: Mobile Business Applications Are Here And They're Delivering Value
Commentary  |  10/25/2007  | 
Yesterday at Mobile Business Expo (MBX), we took the deep dive into mobile business applications. Not only are businesses deploying applications other than mobile e-mail, many of these applications are powerful and they deliver real ROI.
EU 'Blue Card' For Techies Could Give U.S. A Black Eye
Commentary  |  10/25/2007  | 
Is the United States locking the door and nailing it shut to foreign tech talent while Europe is getting ready to roll out the red carpet? Some people think so.
Mobile Business Expo: Tips For Building Business Mobility Strategies
Commentary  |  10/25/2007  | 
While everyone talks about mobile strategy plans, it seems we all need help when it comes time how to craft them. In an attempt to help CIOs and IT managers better think about mobility I sat down with Philippe Winthrop, Research Director -- Wireless and Mobility, Aberdeen Group, at Mobile Business Expo to come up with some useful tips for this special edit
Who's Afraid Of Web 2.0?
Commentary  |  10/25/2007  | 
CIOs are -- and they should be, according to a leading IBM researcher. IT needs to get off its cost-containment hobby horse and start mashing up-- or end users will do it for them.
Cybersecurity Redux: How Appealing Is Free Beer For The Rest Of Your Life?
Commentary  |  10/24/2007  | 
Your head of security calls you at 3 a.m. to tell you that a company laptop stuffed with thousands of personal-data records has been stolen. To get that laptop back safely, what would you be willing to offer: How about a lifetime supply of beer?
EBay Is Retirement Plan Of Last Resort For Aging Rockers
Commentary  |  10/24/2007  | 
Once the glory has faded and your music is most fondly recalled by folks north of 40, all some rockers have left are their memories. So when they need some extra coin, and a reunion concert or small-venue tour won't be on until next summer, they can always turn to their collection of instruments. Fortunately, these days they don't have to hock them; there's eBay.
Mobile Business Expo: Microsoft's New Mobile Platform May Be WinMo's Tipping Point
Commentary  |  10/24/2007  | 
Microsoft delivered a potential body blow to the mobile business market yesterday with a new mobility platform designed to make Windows Mobile the de facto standard for IT. Will this be Microsoft's mobile tipping point?
Mobile Business Expo: iAnywhere Brings Enterprise E-mail To The iPhone
Commentary  |  10/24/2007  | 
If you're a professional who shelled out for the iPhone but still can't use it to access your work e-mail, get ready because soon you may be able to access your corporate network with your iPhone.
Mobile Business Expo: How To Craft A Mobile E-Mail Strategy
Commentary  |  10/24/2007  | 
Yesterday afternoon at Mobile Business Expo (MBX) we tackled the issue of crafting a push e-mail strategy. Guess what, it's not just about e-mail anymore.
Cryptography's Lemon Of A Business Model
Commentary  |  10/23/2007  | 
If life gives you lemons, make lemonade. Here's how a startup in the encryption market took that saying to heart.
Mobile Business Expo: Applications Lead Way In The Verticals
Commentary  |  10/23/2007  | 
This week I am blogging from Mobile Business Expo, the mobility component of Interop in New York City. My colleague, Eric Zeman, this week will be blogging from CTIA Wireless IT & Entertainment on the other coast in San Francisco. Earlier this morning, we kicked off MBX with a panel on mobility in the verticals.
IT Managers Say Sensitive Data Exposed
News  |  10/23/2007  | 
Greater allocation of resources not resulting in fewer intrusions
AT&T Suit Against Vonage Makes Mockery Of U.S. Patent System
Commentary  |  10/22/2007  | 
Is the U.S. patent system irretrievably broken, or are aggrieved parties justifiably defending their turf against infringement by companies unfairly trying to benefit from the fruits of their labors? Looking at AT&T's lawsuit against Vonage, it definitely seems to me like it's the former.
CIOs, IT Spending, And 'Pressure On Growth'
Commentary  |  10/22/2007  | 
What's your IT budget looking like for next year -- increase, decrease, or stand pat? And what does that say about an organization's commitment to IT as an innovation engine?
Is SaaS The End Of IT?
Commentary  |  10/22/2007  | 
That depends on what your definition of "is" is, to paraphrase a famous presidential equivocation -- and your definition of IT.
New Software Alerts USB Storage Theft
News  |  10/22/2007  | 
Monitor unauthorized USB memory stick activity and prevent data theft
Dumb iPhone Commercial Of The Week (Plus, Dell Discovers Devo)
Commentary  |  10/21/2007  | 
So now the iPhone helps a pilot bust his plane out of a 3-hour tarmac delay by enabling him to surf to That's the preposterous story line of Apple's latest commercial, which was inescapable on Sunday whether you were watching football during the day on FOX and CBS, or game seven of the American League Championship Season in the evening.
Jury Of His IT Peers Would Throw The Book At Convicted Hacker, Poll Shows
Commentary  |  10/19/2007  | 
By an overwhelming margin, readers would hit 26-year-old convicted hacker Joseph Patrick Nolan with the maximum sentence of 10 years in jail plus a $250,000 fine, according to results of a CIOs Uncensored online poll. That maximum sentence got the vote of 65% of respondents, while 14% voted for 1 year in prison and a $50,000 fine; another 14% voted for 1,000 hours of community service
Finding The Features That Make VoIP Worthwhile
Commentary  |  10/19/2007  | 
Lots of talk about unified communications this week, thanks to Microsoft. But what CIOs really need to know is which feature will cause fellow execs to utter these words: "For that feature alone it's worth doing this system." I've got two examples.
Life (And Career Planning) Among The IT Tribe
Commentary  |  10/19/2007  | 
We tend to view certain organizations and professions as if they were tribes or sects, with their own unique cultures, customs, personality traits, and aspirations.
5 Things Facebook Must Do To Be Really Useful
Commentary  |  10/19/2007  | 
So Mark Zuckerberg was telling the audience at the Web 2.0 Summit the other day how he's going to double Facebook's workforce, presumably to broaden its appeal beyond its 47-million current users. (What, all those students and on-the-job time-wasters aren't enough?) Here's an idea for you, Mark: Make Facebook into a truly useful tool, one where you can do more than just post pictures and ping people you're al
What Sentence Does Convicted Hacker Deserve? Vote, See 'Exit Polls'
Commentary  |  10/18/2007  | 
Click here to vote on what sentence you feel convicted hacker Joseph Patrick Nolan deserves for hacking into and wiping out his ex-employer's payroll and personnel files. As of 12:30 EDT, here's where things stood: 32% of you feel he deserves the maximum sentence of 10 years in prison and $250,000 fine; 32% say 1 year in prison and
Two Pricing Puzzles: The Risk Of The Rising Rupee, And Free Cyberexorcisms
Commentary  |  10/18/2007  | 
What's the right price for an IT service? Based on some overnight news releases, this question is vexing IT service companies around the globe. For rapidly growing Indian service companies, the issue is how to continue making a profit on U.S. contracts while the Indian rupee surges in value against the dollar. Meanwhile, two U.S. cybersecurity firms have decided that the key is to give their services away -- well, at least for a day.
Intel Eyes Silicon Photonics As Future Speedway For Computing
Commentary  |  10/17/2007  | 
The problem with today's computers is that, as fast as they are, they aren't fast enough. More precisely, the thin copper wiring used to link state-of-the-art processors can't support bandwidths greater than 15 to 20 gigabits per second. That's where optoelectronic devices come in, and that's why Intel is working on silicon photonics -- aka chips with built-in lasers. They can deliver communications speed of 40 Gbps and more.
Cast Your Vote: Dubious Dweeb, Courageous Crusader, Or Tech Terrorist?
Commentary  |  10/17/2007  | 
Readers are expressing a range of views about the disgruntled IT worker who, as we noted last week, bungled his resignation process and thereby forfeited his last two weeks' salary, inspiring him to hack into and wipe out his ex-employer's payroll and personnel files. What sentence should he receive? Read on and cast your vote.
Career-Maker Or Reputation-Breaker: BI Projects And Today's CIOs
Commentary  |  10/17/2007  | 
A recent survey on the impact of BI projects offers little value because all the respondents are IT folks, rather than hard-core business users. But what's not so silly -- in fact it's quite scary -- is that this example serves as yet another reminder that in far too many companies, the IT community is totally detached from customers and is thereby becoming increasingly irrelevant. Is this hitting close to home?
Google's GrandCentral Is Hottest Mobile App Ever
Commentary  |  10/16/2007  | 
The neatest new app I've seen in a long time is a simple idea inspired by the messy patchwork of mobile handsets, work phones, and personal landlines all of us juggle every day. It's called GrandCentral, and it gives you a single phone number through which you can screen and route all your calls. It also records voice mails for easy access via a Web interface or on your mobile handheld.
Former Homeland Security CIO Gets Board Position
Commentary  |  10/16/2007  | 
Steve Cooper, former Homeland Security CIO, was appointed to the board of a nonprofit organization working on interoperability standards among emergency responders. Chalk up another small victory for CIO credibility.
Who's The CIO Of The Year?
Commentary  |  10/16/2007  | 
InformationWeek is looking for nominations for its Chief of the Year. If you know of a worthy tech exec -- a person who's visionary, innovative, influential, an impact player -- please let us know.
Oracle Quiet As IRS Probes Quarter Billion Tax Write Off
Commentary  |  10/16/2007  | 
The IRS is investigating whether Oracle used some accounting tricks to manufacture a quarter billion dollar loss and claim a $78 million refund. So far, Oracle won't talk--is it too busy trying to buy BEA?
Reports: Apple Cutting Prices, Expanding Selection For DRM-Free iTunes
Commentary  |  10/16/2007  | 
Apple plans to offer a greater selection of tracks in DRM-free format in the iTunes store, and drop the price to $0.99, in the face of competitive pressure from, according to reports.
TCB: Self-Help Books For CIOs
Commentary  |  10/15/2007  | 
Unfortunately, there isn't such a thing as a CIO manual. (Is there? -- please share.) But there does seem to be an endless supply of self-help-style, personal-productivity tomes for busy executives. What are the best ones for time-challenged tech execs?
CIO's Next Move: Does COO Make Sense?
Commentary  |  10/15/2007  | 
What's the next career move after CIO? Depends on what you want -- and what your organization needs.
Intel Flirts With No-EMail Fridays
Commentary  |  10/15/2007  | 
OK, so Intel hasn't actually asked employees to take a permanent e-mail break one day a week, but the chip giant -- like several other forward-thinking companies -- has been pilot-testing temporary moratoriums on time-wasting communications. The idea is gaining ground in Corporate America, as noted recently in The Wall Street Journal.
Intel's First 45-Nm Penryn Quad-Core Processor Due Nov. 12
Commentary  |  10/14/2007  | 
More from the quad-core wars: While we're waiting for AMD to release its first Phenom desktop chips before year's end, Intel is poised to ship its hottest desktop processor ever -- and its first 45-nm part -- in the form of the Core 2 Extreme QX9650 on Nov. 12.
The Slow, Painful Crawl Toward E-Health
Commentary  |  10/12/2007  | 
The Commonwealth Fund's recent survey of health care opinion leaders released in July 2007 showed that 67% of health care opinion leaders thought the acceleration of health IT would be very effective or effective in improving quality and safety in health care. Yes, the U.S. health care system, where we spend more than $2 trillion, has problems that reach far beyond its IT. And as the above survey shows, not everyone thinks IT will be all that helpful -- a third in this
All-You-Can-Eat IT Service
Commentary  |  10/12/2007  | 
Sinu provides IT service and tech support to small businesses for a flat monthly fee, regardless of how much time is spent fixing technology problems.
The Enemy Within: Disgruntled IT Employee Trashes Payroll Records And Could Get 10 Years
Commentary  |  10/12/2007  | 
Just when you thought your to-do list already was too long comes the news that a disgruntled IT worker who had bungled his resignation process was convicted of later hacking into and wiping out the company's payroll and personnel files. So we must ask: How prepared is your team for locking out employees in transition?
iPhone Unbricked, But Apple Still Locked
Commentary  |  10/12/2007  | 
The penultimate chapter in Apple's sad iBricking saga has begun, with news that "good" hacker Erica Sadun has led a team that's come up with a way to have your iPhone cake and eat it, too. Their "jailbreak" procedure lets users unlock their phone and download third-party apps, without getting bricked. (The final chapter will be written if, and only if, Apple opens the iPhone. Don't hold your bre
Survey: UK Consumers Fear Online Identity Fraud
News  |  10/12/2007  | 
Survey reveals massive consumer mistrust of businesses over identity fraud
RIAA File-Sharing Verdict Delays Day Of Reckoning On Downloading
Commentary  |  10/11/2007  | 
I'm sorry to disappoint the record companies, but the Recording Industry Association of America's legal victory against Jammie Thomas, who was ordered by a Minnesota court to pay $220,000 in damages for sharing songs over Kazaa, changes nothing. Kids still steal most of their music, and the recording industry hasn't accepted the reality that it has to bag both the CD and DRM before it has a prayer of reviving itself.
Phenom And Penryn Quad-Cores Coming For Christmas
Commentary  |  10/10/2007  | 
If you covet processing power like I do, then we're both looking forward to a great fourth quarter, when AMD unleashes its first desktop quad-core processors, called Phenom, and Intel -- already a player in that arena -- counterpunches with its first 45-nm Penryn parts.
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