Commentary
Content posted in October 2009
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Ballmer: Windows 7 Adoption A Matter Of When, Not If
Commentary  |  10/5/2009  | 
Steve Ballmer seems confident that businesses will adopt Windows 7. Of course, three years ago, Microsoft's CEO was sure that companies would deploy Vista, and look how that played out. Will he be right this time?
What The? Latest Mobile Backup Service Offered By Best Buy
Commentary  |  10/5/2009  | 
Best Buy has decided to take on a bigger role in the mobile landscape, though I am not sure who's going to go for this. Today, Best Buy has announced a service that is similar to My Phone from Microsoft or MobileMe from Apple: mIQ will backup end user smartphones and store up to 1GB of data in the cloud.
Is Apple The Future Of Print?
Commentary  |  10/5/2009  | 
Rumors have been rampant that Apple Computer is poised to introduce a new tablet computer, thereby reinventing the way consumers experience books and newspapers. My bet is that a device won't do the reinventing.
Opera Scores Major Distribution Deal With AT&T
Commentary  |  10/5/2009  | 
Today's news from Opera Software is the kind of win the company really needs. Starting with four new feature phones that AT&T announced today and moving forward, Opera Mini will be behind the att.net browser on board AT&T phones.
It's All The Same Kind Of Free To Us
Commentary  |  10/5/2009  | 
Over the weekend I got into a heated discussion sparked by some of the things I'd asserted in a previous column about open source vs. free software. Out of that discussion came another, similar idea: Most people don't distinguish between kinds of free, and maybe it's unfair to expect them to.

Wolfe's Den Interview: Pacific Labs CIO Talks Cloud Computing Security
Commentary  |  10/5/2009  | 
Jerry Johnson, chief information officer of Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, offers insights into cloud security, the war on cybercrime, and the expansion of the perimeter.
T-Mobile Adds Samsung Behold II To Android Stable
Commentary  |  10/5/2009  | 
T-Mobile sure loves itself some Android. By the holiday shopping season, it will have offerings from HTC, Motorola and now Samsung. The Behold II offers a wealth of features, including a 5-megapixel camera, 3G and Samsung's TouchWiz user interface.
Correcting Crowdsourcing Misconceptions
Commentary  |  10/5/2009  | 
The reputation of crowdsourcing as a way of generating new ideas got a recent boost from the $1 million Netflix prize, which was awarded to a group of people who invented an algorithm for suggesting movies to users of the online movie subscription service.
Global CIO: Why Hewlett-Packard Must Articulate Its Enterprise Strategy
Commentary  |  10/5/2009  | 
Mark Hurd has cranked up HP's operational excellence but HP has yet to reveal an equally compelling external strategy to the world: what is HP's core strength? What does HP do best?
Windows Mobile 6.5 Launches Tomorrow
Commentary  |  10/5/2009  | 
October 6 is the big day for Windows Mobile. The first major release since Windows Mobile 5 launched in 2005 is ready to roll out. A lot has happened since then, namely the iPhone. In response to that, WinMo 6.5 is a lot more finger friendly than any of its WinMo predecessors. While previous releases have focused on enterprise features, such as management and security, WinMo 6.5 has a definite consumer appeal that the Microsoft platform has lacked in recent years.
Salesforce.com Mixed Blessing As Collaborator & Competitor
Commentary  |  10/4/2009  | 
Salesforce.com's new joint venture to create financial apps on its Force.com platform will provide great comfort to C-level prospects evaluating the SaaS model. But for partners already creating financial apps on Force.com, Marc Benioff's company now presents itself as a competitor as much as a collaborator. Insightful analyst Jeffrey Kaplan breaks down this mixed blessing.
Hunch Helps You Make Decisions
Commentary  |  10/3/2009  | 
Hunch aims to help you make the right decision about questions in your life. I wanted to learn more about this new service so I met with co-founder Chris Dixon.
Download The New bMighty Browser Toolbar
Commentary  |  10/3/2009  | 
This summer, I blogged about how Conduit was improving its custom browswer toolbars, and I demonstrated the concept with a simple bMighty toolbar. At the time, I promised to create a bMighty toolbar you'd actually want to put on your browser. Well, it took a few months and some help from the folks at Conduit, but the free bMighty Community Browser Toolbar
Palm Thumbs Nose At Apple, Repairs iTunes Sync With webOS 1.2.1
Commentary  |  10/3/2009  | 
It appeared as though Palm had given up its iTunes syncing fight recently when the details surrounding webOS 1.2 became available. Nope. Today, Palm announced webOS 1.2.1, and it brings back the ability to sync with iTunes 9.0.1.
Finally, Some Well-Deserved Pay Cuts
Commentary  |  10/2/2009  | 
This week's public filings from Microsoft showed that in addition to cutting people, the company has cut executive pay in reaction to their revenue downturn. It's good to see that some companies are still willing to hold their executives responsible for poor performance.
Hadoop and the Big-Data Revolution
Commentary  |  10/2/2009  | 
There's a revolution underway in the use of big data, and Hadoop, the open-source distributed computing system, is at the center of it. Apache Hadoop success stories and accolades were shared today by the likes of Yahoo!, Facebook, eHarmony, IBM and JP Morgan Chase at Hadoop World in New York City. Here's a sampling of highlights...
Compliance & Security Often Forgotten w/ UC
Commentary  |  10/2/2009  | 
One of the big hurdles in deploying unified communications, especially where it includes Web-based technology (think Skype, Instant Messaging, even texting), is how to tie all of that rogue communication into your compliance and security policies. That's the topic of our Whiteboard Tutorial today.
Man Threatens His Own iPhone With Gun In An Apple Store
Commentary  |  10/2/2009  | 
You just can't make this stuff up. Apparently a man brought his iPhone to the Genius Bar at an Apple Store. He also brought his 9mm piece, which he brandished and pointed at his iPhone, threatening to shoot it.
Recovery.gov Double Fault: Broken Data Feeds
Commentary  |  10/2/2009  | 
The relaunched recovery.gov site no longer supports automated data feeds. These feeds had allowed users of the 1.0 site to perform valued-added analyses, "the whole point of accountability and transparency" according one site user, who added, "from a software architecture standpoint, they seem to have missed a key principle here: backward compatibility."
Is Apple Getting Ready To Re-Invent The Mouse?
Commentary  |  10/2/2009  | 
Apple is the company that introduced the world to mouse computing; could it now be planning to re-invent the mouse, maybe introducing a new kind of input device that combines the mouse and keyboard? That's the speculation buzzing on the Apple blogs today, fueled by a patent out of Cupertino.
Android Army Gains A Soldier Of ONE
Commentary  |  10/2/2009  | 
An unknown company hailing from Spain has released information about a brand new Android device. The Geeks'Phone ONE boasts some impressive specs, and the company expects to be able to sell it unlocked for about $375.
Zmanda Still A Great Pick For Cloud-Based Data Backups
Commentary  |  10/2/2009  | 
Zmanda is beefing up its cloud-based backup service, making it an even better deal for small and medium-sized businesses.
Electronic Medical Alerts Don't Guarantee Timely Response
Commentary  |  10/2/2009  | 
Electronic medical alerts are a significant improvement over paper-based systems, but doctors often still ignore warnings they should pay attention to, according to a recent study. Even when notified electronically, doctors sometimes ignore test results that show the patient might have a serious problem.
Waiting for Wave 1.1
Commentary  |  10/2/2009  | 
The best comment I've heard about Google Wave so far: "Wave is simultaneously less and more than I'd hoped." Me, I already have plans on the table to set up my own Wave server: my personal "Wave 1.1", as it were. Or even Wave 2.0.

BlackBerry Storm 2 Reviewed In Detail, May Street Oct. 25
Commentary  |  10/2/2009  | 
The BlackBerry Storm 2 has to be one of the worst kept secrets in Waterloo. This device has posed for pictures, made video appearances, and shown up in wireless network operator inventory systems. Now, it's been given one last extensive video review and has a possible street date.
Global CIO: The Difference Between Strategy And Tactics
Commentary  |  10/2/2009  | 
So you want to look like a genius? Most often, we stumble our way into the greatest of breakthroughs.
Global CIO: Will Oracle Or SAP Blink First On 22% Maintenance Fees?
Commentary  |  10/2/2009  | 
As a new investment report and an article in Barron's question the sustainability of the inflexible annual fees, we offer three scenarios for how this extremely important situation will play out.
Palm Won't Survive
Commentary  |  10/2/2009  | 
I am not even going to speculate and ask "Can Palm survive?" or "Will the Pre save Palm?" I am just going to come out and say it - WebOS is too little, too late. The Pre sales numbers are disappointing. Palm's application store almost non-existent. This and other mistakes by Palm in the last few months will doom the company. Maybe not this year. Maybe not next year, but once they run out of cash, that's it unless someone gobbles them up.
Why I Started A Facebook Fan Page For Myself
Commentary  |  10/1/2009  | 
I started a Facebook fan page for myself yesterday. The reason I did it was (take your pick): (1) As a workaround for limitations in using Facebook for business communications with groups of people you don't know or (2) To feed my unreasonably large ego. Well, actually, probably both reasons apply.
Verizon Intros HTC Imagio
Commentary  |  10/1/2009  | 
Verizon Wireless is trying to stamp out its reputation for not having good smartphone by introducing the HTC Imagio, the carrier's first handset to have Windows Mobile 6.5. At $200, the touch-screen handset is a pretty good deal considering its packing some major hardware.
Down To Business: The Tech Economy Data Tells Us Only So Much
Commentary  |  10/1/2009  | 
Wallets are starting to open, but it's too early to draw definitive conclusions about the prospects for jobs and growth.
Here comes the Wave
Commentary  |  10/1/2009  | 
CIOs In The Hot Seat
Commentary  |  10/1/2009  | 
Anytime you put a "C" in your title, your shadow grows and there's no place to hide. We decided to put three CIOs in the hot seat, in front of their peers, and in front of a board of directors, American Idol-style. The board was tough, but the CIOs were phenomenal.
Oracle Taps HyperRoll, IBM Sells U2 Databases
Commentary  |  10/1/2009  | 
You probably heard that Oracle plans to acquire HyperRoll's key assets, but IBM was pretty quiet about selling off its U2 databases (UniData and UniVerse) to Rocket Software. Here's a bit more context behind both of these moves.
Defense Department Loves Social Networking Again
Commentary  |  10/1/2009  | 
The Defense Department's on-again off-again romance with social networking sites like Twitter and Facebook could be on again big-time if it adopts the policies suggested in a draft memo on "Internet-based capabilities." Troops and their families would be permitted to use public social networking sites, and military brass would be directed to keep an eye on Internet developments to watch for new opportunities and threats.
Android 1.6 'Donut' Is Officially Being Pushed To T-Mobile Customers
Commentary  |  10/1/2009  | 
Users of the HTC G1 and HTC myTouch 3G, listen up. T-Mobile is offering you a taste of the Donut this week. Owners of T-Mobile's Android phones can expect to see an over-the-air update bump their version of Google's mobile platform from 1.5 to 1.6 -- also known as "Donut".
Larry Ellison Hates Cloud Computing
Commentary  |  10/1/2009  | 
Wikipedia Trusts The Crowd, Almost
Commentary  |  10/1/2009  | 
Wikipedia is changing the way it updates entries on living people, and will require an "experienced volunteer" to review and approve information before posting. I'm not surprised by the decision, and I suspect there are more changes coming.
Shakeout For Top Outsourcers Coming, Gartner Says
Commentary  |  10/1/2009  | 
Twenty-five percent of today's top business-process outsourcers will disappear in the next three years due to economic pressures, poorly conceived contracts, and the inability to adapt to standardized delivery models, says Gartner. Ever the team player, Gartner also offers six suggestions that could indicate your outsourcing partner is not long for this world.
Practical Analysis: Research Shows Cutting Costs Not A Gov IT Priority
Commentary  |  10/1/2009  | 
Government IT managers need resources and skilled workers, but they show limited interest in shared services.
Leaning Towards Freedom
Commentary  |  10/1/2009  | 
The advocates of free software -- not just open source, but free as in freedom -- talk about the use of computers as a basic human right. It probably is. But I see freedom as a direction to lean into, rather than a specific path or goal to be obtained.

Public 'Concerned' About Texting & Driving, Except When It Applies To Them
Commentary  |  10/1/2009  | 
The headlines about the dangers of texting while driving have been hard to miss this week. Statistics indicate that nearly 6,000 Americans were killed by distracted drivers last year. A new study shows that nearly 90% of Americans are concerned about the dangers of using mobile phones while driving...but it doesn't appear to be stopping them from doing it.
New Dell Vostro 430 SMB Desktop Leverages Windows 7, Intel i5 And i7 Chips
Commentary  |  10/1/2009  | 
Dell's lastest addition to its Vostro line of small-business-oriented computers leads trend toward "powerhouse" desktop machines for smaller companies.
RIM CEO Goes Coyote Ugly
Commentary  |  10/1/2009  | 
Blackberry fans got a windfall Wednesday, though most probably didn't even know it. A bankruptcy judge mercifully killed RIM CEO Jim Balsillie's ruinous quest to purchase the NHL's Phoenix franchise. Now maybe Balsillie can get back to running his company, which is withering from neglect.
Windows 7 Virtual Event Post-Game: Serious Tech Time
Commentary  |  10/1/2009  | 
The big takeaway that surfaced at the successful Windows 7 Virtual Event we held on Wednesday is that many CIOs and admins are moving beyond the big-picture question of "should we upgrade or not" and are now focused on technical point issues, mostly related to performance and compatibility. (For those who couldn't attend, we'll have a replay archive posted withi
71 Scanner Terms You Need To Know
Commentary  |  10/1/2009  | 
Think you know everything you need to know about scanners and document imaging? Think again. From "Achromatic Color" to "Zoom," the latest addition to the bMighty Scanner How-To Center is a free downloadable guide to more than 71 key terms that can help you scan business documents faster, better, and more effic
The Generic Smartphone Is In Trouble
Commentary  |  10/1/2009  | 
If you talk to someone with an iPhone and ask them about it, they will undoubtedly tell you all sorts of things the phone can do. They know it is by Apple, that there are a bazillion apps for it, that it syncs with iTunes and much more. If you talk to someone with an Android phone or the Palm Pre, you will likely get similar information about those phones. If you ask someone that is running Windows Mobile though, there is a good chance they won't even know what OS it is running, much less featur
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