Commentary
Content posted in August 2008
<<   <   Page 3 / 9   >   >>
Google Sets Up Mobile Election Web Site
Commentary  |  8/25/2008  | 
With 10 weeks to go before the election, the amount of news coverage surrounding John McCain and Barack Obama is set to skyrocket (as if it hadn't already). In order to help you parse through all the chatter, Google has set up a special Web site where mobile phone users can find the latest headlines.
Heart Scare Prompts Health Care IT Crusade
Commentary  |  8/25/2008  | 
It's amazing how one ignores important stuff until it gets personal. But following my 80-year-old mom's cardiac scare over the weekend, now I'm surfing over to HP and Intel to learn about their major efforts to connect world-class computing to health care, and I'm a new-found advocate for getting every American's medical records into electronic form, so doctors know your history no matter where you run into trouble. So here's what happened with my mom.
David Raab Offers Kudos for QlikView
Commentary  |  8/25/2008  | 
David Raab is a great fan and former reseller of QlikTech's QlikView. His recent lengthy post about the product is positive enough to have been recommended by the company itself. But of course, no technology is perfect... In particular, the idea that QlikView automagically gives you access to all your information, without any prior work, is refuted...
Obama Texts His VP Choice: Smaller Businesses Are Listening
Commentary  |  8/25/2008  | 
There is, of course, a lot of hoopla surrounding Barack Obama's choice of Joe Biden as his running mate. But the real excitement -- at least as far as smaller businesses are concerned -- is how his campaign made the initial announcement: They texted it to lots of people's cellphones. Is it finally safe to declare that mobile marketing is here to stay?
Old Media Gets The Scoop On Obama's VP Pick
Commentary  |  8/25/2008  | 
When I woke up Saturday morning, I found a text message waiting on my iPhone from the Barack Obama campaign, informing me that the candidate named Joe Biden as running mate. But I already knew that, because I'd already gotten the news the night before -- from newspapers. Old-fashioned journalism -- wordslingers working contacts inside the Obama campaign -- leaked the story in advance of your new-fangled text messaging. Score one for the old school.
Scripting GUI Testing with Ruby Book Review
Commentary  |  8/25/2008  | 
After listening to a Pragmatic Podcast featuring the book's author, Ian Dees, I had high expectations to learn from his experiences.
Seinfeld Does Windows Vista
Commentary  |  8/24/2008  | 
It seems like Microsoft really is getting serious about raising sales for Vista. The Wall Street Journal says the company has hired comedian Jerry Seinfeld as one of the faces for a $300 million ad campaign. The core slogan for the campaign is supposedly "Windows, Not Walls."
Revinetix Adds 'File-Level Deduplication' To Backup Appliances
Commentary  |  8/24/2008  | 
Disk-to-disk backup appliance vendor Revinetix updated the RevOS software on its dedicated backup appliances to store just a single copy of a file or e-mail message across multiple locations and backup sessions. Their PR folks then sent out a press release saying they were adding data deduplication. The semanticist in me says "That's not deduplication, that's single-instance storage." I reserve the term deduplication for processes that reduce duplicate data contained in similar, not just identic
Roll Your Own Hardware, or Dr. Dobb's Does Bug Labs
Commentary  |  8/24/2008  | 
A few months ago, I had the pleasure of interviewing Peter Semmelhack, the CEO and founder of Bug Labs. I said at the time -- and still believe -- that Bug Labs is a very interesting company. Its mission is to help engineers tap their creativity and build any type of device they want -- without having to solder or learn solid state electronics. And to apply the term "mashups" to hardware as well
The Linkup Online Backup Goes Belly Up -- Lessons?
Commentary  |  8/23/2008  | 
After a history of poor service and multiple cases of lost user data, the online backup vendor known as MediaMax and, finally, The Linkup went belly up this month, leaving users in the lurch. More important, how can you avoid losing your data when, or if, a storage service provider fails?
Content Management Acronym Soup
Commentary  |  8/22/2008  | 
I was recently (justly) taken to task for assuming that readers of this blog would know what the acronyms in the content management space mean. Not just what the three- and four-letter acronyms we throw around stand for, but also what technologies and processes they actually represent. The funny thing is that even within the content management community, there isn't always agreement. So here's an attempt to try to demystify things a bit.
Google's Lively Unloved
Commentary  |  8/22/2008  | 
So Google's Lively isn't so lively. According to The Economist, "Hardly anyone is using Lively."
Opera Says Mobile Web Use Grew 16% In June
Commentary  |  8/22/2008  | 
In its latest "State of the Mobile Web" report, Opera Software details how things shaped up in the month of July. The number of page views jumped, though the mobile Web site rankings remained mostly unchanged in the U.S.
Smaller Companies Powerless -- in Outages
Commentary  |  8/22/2008  | 
Smaller companies apparently experience power outages pretty frequently, according to a recent survey. But when it comes to some sort of back up power systems, most smaller companies are in the dark.
Cross the BI-Web Analytics Divide
Commentary  |  8/22/2008  | 
At the TDWI Summit this week, I had the opportunity to talk about Web Analytics with enterprise business intelligence (BI) execs. I came away concluding that the worlds of enterprise data and Web metrics still remain far apart... The separation is partly technical and partly cultural.
Helio Is Officially Folded Into Virgin Mobile USA
Commentary  |  8/22/2008  | 
Today marked the official end of yet another MVNO. Virgin Mobile USA has closed its acquisition of Helio. Helio made waves as an MVNO, providing innovative handsets and services at good prices. Can Virgin Mobile keep the Helio spirit alive?
Open Source You Can Use, August '08 Edition
Commentary  |  8/22/2008  | 
It's high time for another roundup of open source software you can use, the close-of-August-2008 version. This time around: chatting, publishing, and content management.

Untrusted SSL Certificates Indicate A Failure
Commentary  |  8/22/2008  | 
An unknown certificate is a failure in SSL/TLS, and that's how it should be. Ever since Firefox 3 came out, the way it presents SSL-enabled Web sites with self-signed certificates has been called scary and hurtful. Untrusted self-signed certificates should be scary because untrusted self-signed certificates are a failure in SSL/TLS, and a failure in your authen
Security Worries Trump Cost Cutting And Customer Service
Commentary  |  8/22/2008  | 
Despite the tight economy, belt tightening is not top of mind for midsize businesses. Rather, security is what's keeping IT decision makers awake at night. And, few of them are happy about how their company is using IT to achieve business goals.
Are Newly Popular Macs and iPhones Vulnerable to Hackers?
Commentary  |  8/22/2008  | 
Macs are not 100% immune to hackers. iPhones are not 100% immune to hackers. Both platforms can be attacked by malicious software, and of course, users of those platforms can be taken for a ride by phishers or other scammers. That's the truth, even though many many smug Mac users believe otherwise. But now that Macs and iPhones are super-popular, are they at greater risk of attack than before?
Five Reasons Why Airplane Internet Services Will Take Off
Commentary  |  8/22/2008  | 
As American, Delta, and other airlines begin to roll out in-flight Internet services, I'm hearing a lot of doubts about whether they'll stick. And many people are ticked off that airlines have the audacity to charge passengers $12.95 for the service. But for all you naysayers, I have some answers for you on why I think broadband in the sky is here to stay.
Google Offers Up Gears Geolocation API To Make Web Sites Location Aware
Commentary  |  8/22/2008  | 
Google thinks it would be valuable to have any Web site you visit -- whether on your phone or PC -- know where you are. This way, you could receive information that is relevant to your location. A new API from Google will let Web site developers do this, without the use of GPS.
Mathematica's Cloud Computing Initiative
Commentary  |  8/22/2008  | 
I recently interviewed Schoeller Porter, Technical Development Specialist in the Wolfram Partnerships Group, about Mathematica's cloud computing initiatives.
Telecommuting Perception Gap
Commentary  |  8/21/2008  | 
Aging Computers Are Microsoft's Challenge
Commentary  |  8/21/2008  | 
A recurring theme in this year's Olympics is older athletes who are still at the top of their sport. Swimmer Dara Torres and gymnast Oksana Chusovitina are the most successful examples. High performance in aging athletes is something to celebrate, but Microsoft can't be happy about the high performance of aging PCs.
Xerox Works To Bring Document Management To The Masses
Commentary  |  8/21/2008  | 
Xerox this week announced a new addition to its DocuShare family of content and document management products. With DocuShare Express, small to medium-sized businesses can get a solid, reasonably priced system to manage information and content, all while integrating easily with existing Xerox hardware using the new Extensible Interface Platform (EIP) connector.
Intel Spinning Atom Processor Into Big 'Little' Market
Commentary  |  8/21/2008  | 
I've always been highly skeptical of Intel's attempt to carve out a new market niche for Mobile Internet Devices (MIDs). The big question for me: What are these things? They're too big to be smartphones but too small to live like full-function laptops. However, after yesterday's big launch (re-re-launch, if you ask me) of Intel's Atom processor, I'm becoming convinced that MIDs may have a future.
Novell, Re: Microsoft: "We Still Compete"
Commentary  |  8/21/2008  | 
Much to the chagrin of some, Microsoft continues to snap up certificates from Novell that can be redeemed for SUSE Linux Enterprise Server support. So what's the source of the consternation? Is it the mere fact that Novell is "colluding" with Microsoft?

Google: You Have No Privacy, Part 2
Commentary  |  8/21/2008  | 
Google is taking more heat for alleged privacy violations stemming from its Street Views service, this time in Sonoma County, Calif. In this instance, a Google Street Views driver went through a gate, past a "No Trespassing" sign, and past a watchdog to take his images. Think your private road is going to stop Google's prying eyes? Think again.
Air Blog A Go Go
Commentary  |  8/21/2008  | 
There are lots of things I've wanted to do aboard a flight. Blogging wasn't really on that list. But here I am, $12.95 lighter, 36,000 feet above the earth, American Airlines Flight 34, Thursday, Aug. 21, heading from L.A. to New York. Blogging. And that's not all!
Photo Of TechWeb's Fritz Nelson Joining The Mile-High Club
Commentary  |  8/21/2008  | 
My colleague Fritz Nelson is currently on American Airlines' Wi-Fi-equipped flight 34 from Los Angeles to JFK Airport in New York and he and I are video chatting via AOL Instant Messenger (screen shot below). I'm not sure what would happen if everyone on the flight did the same thing, but right now, there's pretty much no latency to the video.
Woman Sues Apple Over 3G iPhone Reception Issues
Commentary  |  8/21/2008  | 
I am tempted to make all sorts of witty, snarky comments about this, but I'll try to stick to the facts. An Alabama woman has sued Apple, stating that the 3G iPhone -- which she can't use in her home because of the 3G reception issues -- doesn't live up to Apple's claims of "twice as fast." The lawsuit could go class action.
Free Wi-Fi Access: An Inalienable Right?
Commentary  |  8/21/2008  | 
It's the dog days of August and travel is at its peak as everyone tries to soak up the last few moments of summer. But, of course, in this era of hyper-connectivity, working never stops completely and in between flights, the checking of e-mails, Web sites, and other stuff on the Internet, is endemic -- as are the groans in those airports where Wi-Fi is only available for a fee.
Early Thoughts On The Palm Treo Pro Not Flattering
Commentary  |  8/21/2008  | 
Despite the all-new hardware and major improvements in style, the new Palm Treo Pro isn't getting analysts and tech writers hot and bothered. Some are calling it "underwhelming", "a flotation device," and a "stopgap". Ouch.
When to Use Modern DBMS Alternatives
Commentary  |  8/21/2008  | 
If there's one central theme in my blog, it's that modern DBMS alternatives should in many cases be used instead of the traditional market leaders... Here's a summary, reproduced from my most recent white paper, on what kinds of database management system you should use in which circumstances.
Please, Not The 'Mother's Basement' Joke Again
Commentary  |  8/21/2008  | 
After reading how a John McCain staff blogger insulted Dungeons & Dragons enthusiasts with a reference to living in their mothers' basements, I'd like to make a plea to mainstream America. This is on behalf of nerds everywhere: Will you please get some new jokes about us?
Multi-core Goes to the Movies, or Who Brought the Popcorn?
Commentary  |  8/21/2008  | 

The boss wanted me to report on the goings on at the Intel Developer Forum. I wanted to take the afternoon off and go to a movie. By the end of the day, however, we were both happy (as happy as the boss can be anyway). How did this happen? Knowing it couldn't possibly take 3,000 developers across the street to the Loews Metreon theatre, Intel brought the theatre to the developers.

The C-word
Commentary  |  8/21/2008  | 
SharePoint Adds Improved Faceted Search And SQL 2008 Support
Commentary  |  8/20/2008  | 
The past week or so has seen the release of a few enhancements and tools of interest to the SharePoint community -- improvements to faceted search, support for SQL 2008, and a third-party tool to help calculate SharePoint's total cost of ownership.
Peek-A-Boo Look At Intel's Atom Processor
Commentary  |  8/20/2008  | 
In an Intel Developer Forum session titled "Splitting The Atom: A Peek Into The Intel Atom Processor" on Wednesday in San Francisco, Intel Fellow Dr. Shreekant (Ticky) Thakkar and Belliappa Kuttanna, the chief architect of Intel's Atom processor, discussed the technological hurdles Intel overcame in the Atom.
Intel Nehalem Processors--The Next Generation
Commentary  |  8/20/2008  | 
Before a standing-room-only session at the Intel Developer Forum on Tuesday in San Francisco, soft-spoken Intel Fellow Rajesh Kumar did a high-level walk-through of Intel's next-generation core microarchitecture (Nehalem) processors in a presentation titled "Screaming Performance, Efficient Power."
A Handset Strictly For E-Mail
Commentary  |  8/20/2008  | 
Would you pay $100 for a handheld gadget that can only check e-mail? I thought about that question as I saw the thin, QWERTY-board sporting device from startup Peek. I'm still struggling to think of a reason for this thing to exist.
Report: BlackBerry Bold Being Delayed For 3G Reception Issues, Too
Commentary  |  8/20/2008  | 
A Citigroup analyst who has used the BlackBerry Bold smartphone reports that the forthcoming device from Research In Motion is suffering the same 3G reception woes that the 3G iPhone is.
Google Docs Competitor Zoho Adds Support For Macros In Spreadsheet Software
Commentary  |  8/20/2008  | 
I am not a big user of spreadsheets, nor do I use a lot of macros. But I am sure this is good news for someone out there. Zoho Sheet can now record and play back Visual Basic macros. It's the only cloud-based spreadsheet that can do that. In fact, the only other spreadsheet that can do that is Microsoft Excel. Google, are you going to ante up?
Hacker Group Taking 'Do Unto Others' To Extremes
Commentary  |  8/20/2008  | 
Not even hackers are safe from hackers anymore. Over the past few months, a group calling itself the "Great Council of Internet Superheros" has been targeting well-known white-hat hacker members of the security community, whose identities we won't mention. These prominent security pros are living in fear of the same thing as corporate America and everyday citizens: having their personal information stolen and exposed.
<<   <   Page 3 / 9   >   >>


The Business of Going Digital
The Business of Going Digital
Digital business isn't about changing code; it's about changing what legacy sales, distribution, customer service, and product groups do in the new digital age. It's about bringing big data analytics, mobile, social, marketing automation, cloud computing, and the app economy together to launch new products and services. We're seeing new titles in this digital revolution, new responsibilities, new business models, and major shifts in technology spending.
Register for InformationWeek Newsletters
White Papers
Current Issue
InformationWeek Tech Digest September 23, 2014
Intrigued by the concept of a converged infrastructure but worry you lack the expertise to DIY? Dell, HP, IBM, VMware, and other vendors want to help.
Flash Poll
Video
Slideshows
Twitter Feed
InformationWeek Radio
Sponsored Live Streaming Video
Everything You've Been Told About Mobility Is Wrong
Attend this video symposium with Sean Wisdom, Global Director of Mobility Solutions, and learn about how you can harness powerful new products to mobilize your business potential.