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IT Career Strategies And Pitfalls

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In This Issue: IT Career Strategies And Pitfalls
1. Editor's Note: Weird News Of The Wired
2. Today's Top Story
    - Google's Growth Outpaces Rivals
    - Brief: MSN Search Growth Lags Far Behind Major Rivals
    - France Launches 'Quaero' Search Engine Project
3. Breaking News
    - Microsoft Unveils Repatched Patch
    - Firefox Bug Could Be Serious
    - Information Builders Expands BI To 'Power Users' And Business Processes
    - Longhorn Server Slated For Second Half Of '07
    - Judges Pose Tough Questions To EU Over Microsoft
    - Microsoft Ships IE 7 Beta 2, Final XP Version To Beat Vista
    - Google: Consumer Input Spurred OneBox
    - Mac Resellers Extend XP Preinstalls To New Mac Portable
    - Microsoft Attacked Over China Piracy Rates
    - Brief: CA Warns Of Disappointing 4Q Earnings
    - Brief: Consumers Like TV, Phone, Web 'Bundles'
4. Grab Bag
    - How To: Prolong iPod Battery Life
    - Don't Blame Scott
    - Online Is The New Box Top
    - How To Stop Internet Identity Theft
5. In Depth: IT Career Strategies And Pitfalls
    - How Does Your Pay Rate?
    - Profile: A Great Job, But Training For A New Career
    - Profile: Switching Industries Is A Tough Career Move
    - Profile: Build Industry Expertise Without Getting Pigeonholed
    - Blog: When The American IT Worker Isn't Always An American
    - Blog: 'Outsourced' Programmers Finally Get Same Benefits As Laid-Off Factory Workers
    - Indian Services Firms Post Strong Growth While U.S. Rivals Struggle
6. Voice Of Authority
    - IT Confidential: A Word Of Advice: Watch Your Job
7. White Papers
    - Executive Roundtable: A Meeting Of The Minds On RFID
8. Get More Out Of InformationWeek
9. Manage Your Newsletter Subscription

Quote of the day: Love Your Job
"Never continue in a job you don't enjoy. If you're happy in what you're doing, you'll like yourself, you'll have inner peace. And if you have that, along with physical health, you will have had more success than you could possibly have imagined." - Johnny Carson (1925-2005)

"Your chances of success are directly proportional to the degree of pleasure you desire from what you do. If you are in a job you hate, face the fact squarely and get out." -- Michael Korda

"Many people think that if they were only in some other place, or had some other job, they would be happy. Well, that is doubtful. So get as much happiness out of what you are doing as you can and don't put off being happy until some future date." -- Dale Carnegie

"Pleasure in the job puts perfection in the work." -- Aristotle (384-322 B.C.)


1. Editor's Note: Weird News Of The Wired
It's only Tuesday evening, but already we've seen an intriguing collection of offbeat, oddball, and unexpected (but welcome to some) news reports. Here are some highlights:

The latest twist in outsourcing to India? It's not another IT job category, but it does involve a pretty specific skill set. You might say it's a whole 'nother line of specialized production altogether. Give up? It's surrogacy, as in babies. According to the Los Angles Times, surrogate mothers in India are a bargain for foreigners, and a boon for the Indian women and their families. One woman in the story was paid $5,000, a fraction of the potential cost of surrogacy in the United States, but the equivalent of six years' salary for her. The LA Times quotes the Indian Council of Medical Research, which estimates that this form of outsourced development projects could grow into a nearly $6 billion-a-year industry.

Something the legions of battle-scarred CA customers and laid-off employees probably thought they'd never see: Former Computer Associates CEO Sanjay Kumar and Stephen Richards, once a top sales executive for the company, pleading guilty to financial fraud charges. Few companies had weirder accounting practices or drove harder bargains with their customers or their acquisitions, so while there may be some satisfaction in this plea, the fact is that although Kumar could have gotten as much as 20 years, it seems he can expect a "significantly" lighter sentence just for pleading guilty. No reports yet on where he'll serve his time.

Another thing you probably never thought you'd see—A Sun lose its daddy. Scott McNealy stepped down after an apparent unwillingness to be Scott McMeanie. McNealy had failed to jettison workers or restructure the struggling company he founded 22 years ago--de rigueur 21rst century remedies for righting listing ships and putting the luster back in tarnished stock. His replacement, longtime Sun exec Jonathan Schwartz, is expected to have no such inhibitions. Sun's stock may have risen $9 on the news, but Sun without Scott? It's almost unimaginable.

While the newly retired McNealy settles in with a cup o' java, I can't help but wonder, what's next? Larry Ellison retiring to race and open the school of one-upmanship? Bill Gates logging off to get a law degree? Steve Jobs setting aside the iPod to open up Steve's All-Night Stake-Out restaurant? His take out containers, BTW, would never leak. But you would, um, need an insanely great a la carte tool to hack open the seal once you got them home.

For a few more examples, involving waterproof laptops, ex-FEMA head Michael Brown, and surfing the Web at work, please go to my blog entry.

Patricia Keefe
pkeefe@cmp.com
www.informationweek.com


2. Today's Top Story

Google's Growth Outpaces Rivals
Americans submitted 6.4 billion keyword queries online in March, up 15% from the previous year.

Related Stories:
Brief: MSN Search Growth Lags Far Behind Major Rivals
The number of searches on MSN increased by only 9% in March, compared with the same month a year ago, Nielsen/NetRatings said. Growth on Google and Yahoo, on the other hand, soared by 41% and 47%, respectively.

France Launches 'Quaero' Search Engine Project
In the hope of stimulating local technological, industrial, and economic development, President Jacques Chirac of France has disclosed a 2 billion euro (about $2.5 billion) plan to back a series of projects, including one on a Franco-German search engine intended to rival Google.


3. Breaking News

Microsoft Unveils Repatched Patch
As promised, Microsoft on Tuesday released an updated edition of its April 11 MS06-016 security bulletin, but it will be offered to users only if it detects the conflicting HP or nVidia software, Microsoft has said.

Firefox Bug Could Be Serious
A security firm fears that a zero-day vulnerability in a fully patched and most-current version of Mozilla's Firefox could be exploited

Information Builders Expands BI To 'Power Users' And Business Processes
Vendor hosts more than 1,200 customers at Summit user conference.

Longhorn Server Slated For Second Half Of '07
At its Management Summit, Microsoft narrows down Longhorn Server's release date and reveals Vista security will come with strings attached.

Judges Pose Tough Questions To EU Over Microsoft
The sharp questioning of the European Commission capped a two-day review of the original finding that Microsoft had illegally bundled Windows Media Player into Windows.

Microsoft Ships IE 7 Beta 2, Final XP Version To Beat Vista
Microsoft has stripped the "Preview" label from Internet Explorer Beta 2 and rolled out the first version of its new browser that the company will support with regular security updates.

Google: Consumer Input Spurred OneBox
Google's OneBox for Enterprise, which is a partnership with several software and hardware vendors, will be released in beta next week.

Mac Resellers Extend XP Preinstalls To New Mac Portable
Several resellers have started taking orders for Apple Computer's new 17-inch MacBook Pro with Windows XP preinstalled for as little as $55 extra.

Microsoft Attacked Over China Piracy Rates
Despite recent success by Microsoft in getting China's big PC makers to bundle legitimate copies of the Windows operating system, the software maker remains cautious about how long it will take for China to stamp out rampant piracy.

Brief: CA Warns Of Disappointing 4Q Earnings
Preliminary financial results for CA's 2006 fiscal fourth quarter indicate substantially poorer-than-expected earnings, the software company said Tuesday.

Brief: Consumers Like TV, Phone, Web 'Bundles'
A new poll says nearly half of consumers interviewed by a research firm said their households receive a communications bundle from a single company.

All our latest news

Watch "The News Show"

In this edition:

John Soat with "The Cult of Personality"
Sun's Scott McNealy steps down, Sanjay Kumar pleads guilty, and Enron's Ken Lay takes the stand.

Laurie Sullivan with "Mendocino"
Be one of the first to see a demonstration of how Mendocino links SAP and Microsoft Office applications.

Alex Wolfe with "New York International Auto Show"
Expensive fuel prices are spurring high-tech changes in the auto industry.


----- The latest research, polls, and tools -----
InformationWeek National IT Salary Survey 2006
This free InformationWeek Research report provides an unparalleled view into trends in IT salaries and compensation plans.

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4. Grab Bag: News You Need From Around The Web

How To: Prolong iPod Battery Life (Playlistmag.com)
With an iPod in hand, you're ready to jump aboard a cross-country flight. Yet you're stuck in the cheap seats, so you don't have a power outlet, as the passengers at the front of the plane do. Charge ahead with these power-saving and battery-enhancement tips.

Don't Blame Scott (Forbes.com)
Sun Microsystems is tapping new leadership after years of struggling to come to terms with Linux.

Online Is The New Box Top (USA Today)
Taking an old-school marketing tactic and putting on an interactive twist, Hollywood is turning to games, sweepstakes, and contests to create excitement for movies and TV shows.

How To Stop Internet Identity Theft (Newsfactor.com)
Internet identity theft is one of the fastest-growing crimes in the United States today. Despite the increasing awareness of identity theft among consumers and financial institutions, the identity-theft racket shows no signs of slowing.


5. In Depth IT Career Strategies And Pitfalls

How Does Your Pay Rate?
Use our free 2006 InformationWeek IT Salary Adviser tool and find out.

Profile: A Great Job, But Training For A New Career
Her Web administrator job pays above average, but she worries there aren't many jobs like hers.

Profile: Switching Industries Is A Tough Career Move
One IT pro's experience involves a failed Google interview, but ultimately success.

Profile: Build Industry Expertise Without Getting Pigeonholed
J&J manager has niche specialty but broad project management skills.

Blog: When The American IT Worker Isn't Always An American
Eric Chabrow gets an E-mail from the head of an IT workers' advocacy group, who wonders how many non-Americans are among employed IT pros in the United States. Good question.

Blog: 'Outsourced' Programmers Finally Get Same Benefits As Laid-Off Factory Workers—A Fair, But Costly, Development
Companies lay off workers for many reasons. Given the myriad ways in which one could suddenly find him- or herself out of a job, is there any justification for the government singling out the latter category for special benefits—like an extra year's worth of unemployment payments?

Indian Services Firms Post Strong Growth While U.S. Rivals Struggle
Financial results show that more businesses are looking overseas for IT services.


6. Voice Of Authority

IT Confidential: A Word Of Advice: Watch Your Job
John Soat hosts an imaginary panel discussion probing the most recent report from the Pew Internet and American Life Project, which says that 45% of Internet users are using the Net to help them with major life decisions.


7. White Papers

Executive Roundtable: A Meeting Of The Minds On RFID
The radio-frequency identification industry's best and brightest met for a panel discussion about the perils and promise of this proliferating technology. Read how, within the panel's freewheeling debate over RFID's applicability, a consensus quickly emerged: It's crucial for managers to make a business case for RFID adoption.


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