Commentary
Content posted in August 2009
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AT&T's First Android Phone In Danger Of Being Canceled
Commentary  |  8/21/2009  | 
AT&T was to have the HTC Lancaster, a phone that was developed for AT&T by the cell phone maker, launch sometime in the third quarter of this year. With just five weeks to go in the quarter, it appears that a delay is inevitable and a cancellation is possible.
Flat World: Freemium Made Workable
Commentary  |  8/21/2009  | 
After Thursday's column about open textbook publisher Flat World Knowledge, I got in touch with Flat World co-founder Eric Frank and talked about many of the things I'd worried about. How do you make things that are free and open, but also useful and profitable?

HP CEO Mark Hurd On R&D: 'Show Me The Money'
Commentary  |  8/21/2009  | 
I wanted to share with you an insider comment I received in response to my Wednesday column, Recession Or Bust, R&D Spend HP Must. According to my correspondent, Hewlett Packard CEO Mark Hurd is a "show me the money" kind of guy. Which is not a criticism -- it simply means that company's research engineers have to earn their stripes every day.
Tech's Glass Ceiling Barely Scratched
Commentary  |  8/21/2009  | 
If ten years ago someone had told you that nine women, or almost ten percent of Forbes' list of 100 most powerful women, represented the technology industry, it would have seemed like an improvement over the status quo. But today it feels like a bit of a step backward, especially when you consider that two of the nine names could easily be slotted into other categories.
ConSentry Goes Belly Up
Commentary  |  8/21/2009  | 
After $80M invested by its VC partners, over $9M of which was received earlier this year in order to fund future growth, an innovator in the Network Access Control space, ConSentry Networks, closed its doors for good today. What does this say about the viability of the NAC space?
AT&T: Data Plans Now Required For All Smartphones
Commentary  |  8/21/2009  | 
Starting September 6, any customer purchasing a smartphone or upgrading to a smartphone with AT&T will be required to subscribe to a $30 monthly data plan (in addition to a voice plan). The change doesn't affect existing customers until they need to upgrade their phone or plan.
DOD Moving To Adopt Limited Social Networking
Commentary  |  8/21/2009  | 
The Pentagon's on-again, off-again relationship with social networking looks like it's on again ... maybe ... as Navy CIO Robert Carey says that social networking tools will be deployed solely on the military domain and cut off from the public Internet.
Boomi CEO: EDI Lives On In SaaS World
Commentary  |  8/21/2009  | 
I just talked with Bob Moul, CEO of the software-as-a-service integration company Boomi, and he's seeing more requests for companies to connect legacy, enterprise EDI infrastructure with SaaS applications.
Day Of Reckoning For Apple, AT&T And Google
Commentary  |  8/21/2009  | 
Remember the Google Voice Debacle? Apple pulled the Google Voice application from the iPhone Apps Store and an uproar ensued. Eventually, the FCC decided to stick its nose into the matter. Well, Apple, AT&T and Google all owe the FCC some answers today.
Verizon Debuts Mobile Video On BlackBerry Storm
Commentary  |  8/21/2009  | 
Verizon Wireless is bringing its V CAST Video service to the BlackBerry Storm, the first smartphone in Verizon's line-up to support the service. For $10 per month, users can watch full-length TV shows and live sporting events such as NHL hockey and college football games.
Steve Jobs' Blind Spot: CEO-Pals On Apple Board
Commentary  |  8/21/2009  | 
Steve Jobs' spectacular performance as Apple's CEO, along with the cult following the company has built over the years, make it very difficult to doubt his methods. But a fascinating analysis of the composition and mindset of Apple's board reveals what could be an Achilles heel for Jobs: too many board-level CEOs with too much empathy for their peer's position.
Bargain Bin: HP Upgrades Its Online Marketing Tools For SMBs
Commentary  |  8/20/2009  | 
HP's new promotions come via collaborations with Microsoft Office Online, printer Avery Dennison, and Stamps.com.
Flash Cookies Serve Up An Annoying New Trick
Commentary  |  8/20/2009  | 
When you delete something from your PC, you expect it to stay deleted. Some online services, however, see things differently.
Phoenix Children's Bridges IT-Clinical Gap
Commentary  |  8/20/2009  | 
Here in the Southwest, population growth outpaces that of other regions and is most pronounced among children. By 2030 the number of children in metropolitan Phoenix alone is projected to reach 1.5 million. This explosive growth has placed increasing demands on pediatric care.
Are Consultants Killing Cloud Computing?
Commentary  |  8/20/2009  | 
It's clear that hype-driven cloud computing translates into dollars given to consultants who promise to lead enterprises to the Promised Land of 'As-a-service.' The coordinates being set by some consultants could lead enterprises to the wrong clouds with the wrong applications, and cost enterprises millions more than expected...
SAS Institute: There Is No For Sale Sign In Our Yard
Commentary  |  8/20/2009  | 
Forrester Research predicts that growing interest in predictive analytics will spur a new wave of consolidation in the business intelligence software market. So I asked the king of predictive analytics, SAS Institute, if the company is up for sale. Here's the answer: "We don't have a sign in the front yard by any means."
Like It Or Not, Mobile Advertising Is Coming
Commentary  |  8/20/2009  | 
We are inundated daily with advertising. It is on the morning news, there are billboards on the morning commute and ads on the radio. Then you really get hit when you open your mailbox. Soon, we can expect to get hit on our phones in a big way.
Google Adds Group Collaboration Tools To Picasa
Commentary  |  8/20/2009  | 
Google recently added better collaboration tools to its Docs product and decided that Picasa deserved similar treatment. Now, Picasa Web Albums will support multiple contributors, making it easy to create a group album.
Windows 7 Update: Timing, Tips, And Security
Commentary  |  8/20/2009  | 
Lots of Windows 7 news this week, but here's the big one: If you want to download the Release Candidate version, better do it soon -- it won't be available after today.
Digital Texts From A Flat World
Commentary  |  8/20/2009  | 
Flat World Knowledge gives its textbooks away for free -- sort of. They're one of the first companies overturning the overpriced-textbook apple cart through a "freemium" strategy. Is it feasible?
FCC Approves CDMA Version Of HTC Hero
Commentary  |  8/20/2009  | 
Good news for lovers of the HTC Hero. Today the FCC granted approval for the device with support for CDMA EVDO technology on board. This approval pretty much confirms that either Sprint or Verizon Wireless will be launching the Android-based handset in the near future.
JetBlue's Revolutionary Promo Sells Out Early
Commentary  |  8/20/2009  | 
Not to say I told you so, but JetBlue's $599 unlimited-travel promotion sold out well ahead of its deadline as customers, in spite of the rotten economy, jumped all over the innovative plan. When it came out last week, we wrote a column about it called JetBlue Genius And Hollywood Lunacy and predicted other companies would start turning over more decision-making power to their customers.
AMD Revs Quad Core With Phenom II X4 965
Commentary  |  8/20/2009  | 
The quad-core processor battle between Intel and AMD remains the most exciting arena in PC technology, where consumers can get the latest stuff at what amounts to cut-rate prices. The newest entry is AMD's Phenom II X4 965 Black Edition. The 3.4-GHz quad-core chip, which modders are already overclocking to 3.9-GHz, goes for $245.
YouTube Scores Content Deal With CNN And TNT
Commentary  |  8/20/2009  | 
Today YouTube said that is has signed a deal with Time Warner that will allow it to post content from a number of Time Warner properties, including CNN, the Cartoon Network and TNT. Professional content has a much better chance of bringing in advertising dollars for YouTube, which is owned by Google.
Mercedes, Honda Open Virtual Showrooms; VIDEO
Commentary  |  8/20/2009  | 
Dassault Systemes has begun marketing virtual showroom simulators to car makers and Honda and Mercedes-Benz have signed "large deals" for the systems in Australia and China. Car shoppers can get 360-degree views of the vehicles, open doors to view interiors, change features, and change colors via the 10-feet-wide screen. Click ahead to see a video demo.
To Tweet Or Not To Tweet
Commentary  |  8/20/2009  | 
Just think about this: the National Football League may be more enlightened than New York Times sports writer Judy Batista, who ragged on Donte' Stallworth for posting what she considered a flippant Tweet.
Global CIO: An Open Letter To Hewlett-Packard CEO Mark Hurd
Commentary  |  8/19/2009  | 
HP should leverage CIO Randy Mott's superb achievements and become The Transformation Company, helping CIOs reverse the deadly 80/20 ratio and become drivers of growth.
Politics Trumps Programming Every Time
Commentary  |  8/19/2009  | 
This week, a Reddit post pointed out an interesting Sharepoint feature that demonstrates what happens when politics and programming collide: the SPUtility.HideTaiwan method is born.
WimMo Runs The Wrong Way In Smartphone Race
Commentary  |  8/19/2009  | 
There is more evidence this week that Windows Mobile is headed the way of the dodo.
Google Ordered To Reveal Defamatory Blogger's Identity
Commentary  |  8/19/2009  | 
Bloggers who hide behind screen names to insult people may find that online pseudonyms don't really conceal one's identity.
Fighting Crime With Text Messages
Commentary  |  8/19/2009  | 
Looks like San Francisco is stepping into the 21st century, and it will be unveiling a way for concerned citizens to text crime tips to police. It's a good sign that San Francisco's finest are beginning to use technology to help them fight crime.
Wolfe's Den: Recession Or Bust, R&D Spend HP Must
Commentary  |  8/19/2009  | 
Research means different things to different companies. For Apple, it's its lifeblood. Microsoft's lab cranks code. At Intel, R&D is in the DNA. So what is it at HP, where Q3 R&D spending was recently slashed by $228 million?
BlackBerry Browser To Support Both Flash And Silverlight?
Commentary  |  8/19/2009  | 
Well, this would be a pretty big coup for Research In Motion, if true. According to a report, future versions of the BlackBerry browser would support not only full Adobe Flash, but Microsoft's Silverlight, as well. That would make it a pretty powerful browser, indeed.
Nokia's Maemo-Based Tablet Makes An Appearance
Commentary  |  8/19/2009  | 
Nokia World, the number one mobile phone company's annual conference, is but several weeks away. As anticipation builds for the keynote and news, one possibility has leaked early. The N900/Rover tablet has been spotted, and it runs Maemo 5.
Following Big 2008 Slump, E-Health Systems Will Boom
Commentary  |  8/19/2009  | 
Fewer new clinical information systems were sold in 2008 than during the previous seven years, according to a new report. But that trend will change in a big way soon.
A New View Of Government 2.0
Commentary  |  8/19/2009  | 
Government 2.0 has been identified in a couple of ways: one could be really called Politics 2.0, and is best personified by the digital grassroots organizing of the Obama campaign.
Valley View TV: Watch Our Live Videocast Aug. 20
Commentary  |  8/19/2009  | 
Because Silicon Valley is still THE hotbed of innovation, it's high time we created a talk-show platform to get inside the companies, demonstrate the new technology and rip apart the most compelling topics in the valley. So we've created "Valley View," a live Web TV experience from TechWeb and InformationWeek. In the pilot show this Thursday at 4 p.m. PST we'll feature live demonstrations of SAP's fledgling software-as-a-service (SaaS) offering and Sybase's enterprise mobile solutions; we
BPMN 2.0 and the Diagram Interchange Mess
Commentary  |  8/19/2009  | 
I am a big fan of OMG's Business Process Modeling Notation (BPMN) 2.0, which has passed its first approval hurdle and is now in the Finalization Task Force stage... But there is one part of the standard that the team messed up big time: Diagram Interchange (DI), meaning the graphical layout of the shapes and symbols.
Linux Kernel Development Keeps On Picking Up
Commentary  |  8/19/2009  | 
The Linux Foundation's latest report about Linux kernel development is a case of good news busting out all over. There's more work than ever being done with the kernel, by more people than ever. Why? People reap the benefits.

Anticipation Building For Facebook 3.0 On iPhone
Commentary  |  8/19/2009  | 
A new in-depth look at the forthcoming Facebook 3.0 application for the iPhone has social networking fans chomping at the bit for the updated software. New features include a completely re-worked homescreen and the ability to post videos directly from the iPhone 3GS.
U.S. Government Goes Startup
Commentary  |  8/19/2009  | 
Blogger Anil Dash takes a look at this year's crop of tech startups, and concludes that the most interesting one around is a little outfit based out of Washington D.C. Maybe you've heard of it? It's the executive branch of the U.S. government. Government technologists embrace the hard-working, open, innovative culture of the best of Silicon Valley, says Dash.
Microsoft's Dual Strategy With Windows Mobile
Commentary  |  8/19/2009  | 
Microsoft's long awaited Windows Mobile 6.5 operating system is due in just a few months, perhaps by October 1. After that, we were expecting Windows Mobile 7 to ship sometime in 2010, but now there is an indication that in early 2010, there will be a refresh to 6.5. On top of that, 6.5 will remain a viable platform even after 7 starts to ship for lower end hardware.
HP Slashes R&D Spending By $228 Million
Commentary  |  8/19/2009  | 
Hewlett-Packard cut Q3 R&D spending by 25.5%, or $228 million, on a year-on-year basis, and by 6.9% when compared to the previous quarter. While pulling back on R&D, which many companies have done over the past year, is not necessarily a bad thing, HP is betting big that a new open-innovation approach will compensate for the big cuts in traditional R&D.
Dell Exec: Linux Netbook Returns A "Non-Issue"
Commentary  |  8/18/2009  | 
Lately, Dell has stuck a fork in some "facts" regarding Linux netbook return rates. Now, the company is considering whether to sell a new type of netbook where Windows won't even be an option.
Healthcare Reform Must Include Connected Health
Commentary  |  8/18/2009  | 
There's great excitement and much debate over President Obama's ambitious healthcare reform agenda. Unfortunately, its three major thrusts--adoption of health information technology (HIT), universal access, and payment reform--focus only on improved access. Policy makers are realizing that these initiatives will only lead to cost increases and magnify healthcare labor shortages.
Workgroup Co-Chair Says HIT Certification Process Is 'Going Well'
Commentary  |  8/18/2009  | 
Last week, the HIT Policy Committee, which is advising the U.S. Dept. of Health and Human Services on the details of the $20 billion health IT stimulus programs, made several recommendations related to the certification of e-health products. Marc Probst, a co-chair of the HIT Policy Committee's certification and adoption workgroup, provides some insight.
Cloud Computing Takes Away Business From IT Outsourcers
Commentary  |  8/18/2009  | 
Something that often gets lost in the discussion about cloud computing is what it means for traditional IT outsourcing. Many of the benefits are the same: Reduced costs, less internal development of software, reduced management of applications and hardware. So as cloud computing matures, it seems the IT outsourcing industry will have to evolve to adapt.
IBM R&D Head Driving Open Innovation
Commentary  |  8/18/2009  | 
While IBM, year after year, is awarded more patents than any other company, it has also become a huge proponent of the red-hot concept of open innovation that allows R&D to scale up and out across organizational boundaries. The concept has also caught on in big ways at GE, HP, Eli Lilly, USC, and Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center.
HTC G1 Update: Cloudy With Little Chance Of Donut
Commentary  |  8/18/2009  | 
Some bickering has sprung up recently about what software updates will be made available to the HTC G1 and myTouch 3G, the two Android phones available from T-Mobile. Developers are saying one thing, HTC is saying another, and T-Mobile is sticking to a third version of reality. Who's saying what to whom and why does it matter: The HTC G1 may be incompatible with future versions of Android.
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