1. Editor's Note: When (Employment) Statistics Lie
2. Today's Top Story: Entertainment/Tech
- TiVo Merges The Internet With TV
- Digital Content Kiosks Rock On
- Online Video Opens Favorite Age Groups To Marketers
3. Breaking News
- Feds Turn To Tech For Enhanced Airport Security
- Feds Want More Airline Data
- This Time To Control Epidemics
- IBM Offers New Self
- Healing Computing Products
- Defying Expectations, PC Holiday Sales Booming
- IDC Reports Jump In Expected IT Spending
- Study: Lack Of App Support Stunting Linux
- Philips Targets New Technology Toward Gaming
- Adobe, Macromedia Deal Nearly Done
- Omron Tags Wal-Mart Suppliers For RFID
- Research In Motion Catches Break In Patent Battle
4. Grab Bag: Sharp Objects On Planes Opposed
5. In Depth: Chip Check
6. Voice Of Authority: EPCglobal's 2006 Focus
7. White Papers: Web Services
8. Get More Out Of InformationWeek
9. Manage Your Newsletter Subscription
Quote of the day:
"Statistician: A man who believes figures don't lie, but admits
that under analysis some of them won't stand up, either." -- Evan
1. Editor's Note: When (Employment) Statistics Lie
Numbers never tell the whole story. Take, for instance, Friday's Labor Department payroll report, which lumps together companies offering ISPs, search portals, and data-processing hosting services. That segment experienced its second consecutive monthly decline in November. That's strange, considering increased Internet use and the popularity of Google and other portals.
The payroll dip in ISPs, search portals, and data processing is countered by gains in other IT sectors: IT services firms, officially labeled by the Bureau of Labor Statistics as computer systems design and related services, employed 1,342,800 people in November, up 6,100 for the month, and nearly 58,000 for the year, a 4.5% annual gain. Computer and peripheral equipment makers added 7,200 workers to their payrolls in the past 12 months, and employed 216,500 people in November, a 3.4% year rise. These numbers -- preliminary for last month and seasonally adjusted -- reflect an increasing demand by businesses and consumers for IT products and services.
But why then, in this strong IT and Internet economy, would employment among ISPs, search portals, and data-processing firms dip to 386,400 last month, down from 389,000 in October and 387,200 in November 2004? Simply, it's the way the government counts numbers. In reality, the number of people performing jobs providing Internet services, creating and maintaining search portals, and managing hosted computers is higher, probably significantly higher, than the government statistics suggest.
In determining payrolls, the government samples some 160,000 businesses and government agencies covering about 400,000 individual worksites. If the worksite primarily supports a service such as an Internet gateway -- say an office of America Online -- it would be counted as an ISP even though the company provides other services such as Web content. Americans are migrating away from old-style ISPs to broadband Internet services, mostly provided by cable TV and telecommunications companies. Though these communications providers have increased staffing to support their ISP services, their payroll increases are reflected in the broadcast, not Internet [ironic, isn't it?] category for cable TV companies and telecommunications for the telecom. That's the story behind the numbers.
TiVo Merges The Internet With TV
Customers with a TiVo Series 2 DVR connected to the Internet over broadband will have access to a movie-ticket service, a Web-radio network, and entertainment portal Yahoo.
More Entertainment/Tech Stories:
Digital Content Kiosks Rock On
A newly introduced unstaffed kiosk that lets consumers burn movies, music, and other media onto CDs is getting huge interest, with three Fortune 500 companies about to test the kiosks and others already rolling them out.
Feds Turn To Tech For Enhanced Airport Security
Heavily beefed up bomb-detection portals are on tap for the nation's airports as part of the security enhancements announced Friday by the Transportation Security Administration. Cutting-edge technology is the big news behind the coming changes.
Study: Lack Of App Support Stunting Linux
Buyers want Linux versions of VPN clients, Adobe Systems' Photoshop and PageMaker, as well as Autodesk's AutoCAD and Intuit's Quicken financial software, according to an open-source organization's online survey.
Philips Targets New Technology Toward Gaming
According to the company, amBX submerges the user within a complete "sensory surround experience," which extends the gaming world out of the screen and into the real world by barraging the senses with audio and visual queues tuned to the action on the screen.
Adobe, Macromedia Deal Nearly Done
The $3.4 billion merger was expected to close on Saturday, with more details about plans expected in the firm's annual analyst briefing in January.
Omron Tags Wal-Mart Suppliers For RFID
The Japanese company has a promising market. Wal-Mart already has mandated that its largest 100 suppliers ship RFID-equipped goods; the company's next-largest 200 suppliers are required to comply in 2006.
Sept. 11 Families, Others Oppose Sharp Objects on Planes (Fox News)
The government's proposal to allow small scissors and some other sharp objects back onto airliners is causing an uproar among flight attendants, families of victims of the Sept. 11 hijackings, and several lawmakers.
Nation's Jobs Rebound in November (Los Angeles Times)
The nation's payrolls expanded by a strong 215,000 jobs in November as the employment picture brightened across a wide range of fields and hurricane recovery efforts along the Gulf Coast triggered a hiring boom in the construction industry, the government said.
Intel Fills CTO, Marketing Posts
The company has tapped Senior Fellow Justin Rattner to serve as chief technology officer; he's responsible for leading Intel's microprocessor, communications, and systems-technology labs and Intel Research.
Chip Market: Consumers Drove $20-Billion October
Buyers of cell phones, MP3 players, digital cameras, digital TVs, and personal computers helped boost the market, according to the newest statistics from the Semiconductor Industry Association.
Intel Faces More Chipset Shortages
On Wednesday, Intel acknowledged that the short supplies for its notebook-based chipsets will continue at least until the first half of 2006.
Intel To Raise Q4 Guidance: Analyst
Citigroup analyst Glen Yeung said he believes the current 2006 growth forecast underestimates the earnings from Intel's dealings with Apple Computer, among other things.
6. Voice Of Authority: EPCglobal: Privacy, Strategy
And Focus For 2006
Mike Meranda, president of ECPglobal Inc. U.S., said the nonprofit organization spearheading radio-frequency identification technology adoption will roll out in early 2006 the Electronic Product Code Information Services (EPCIS) network. The EPCIS network is a collection of standards that will enable companies to share data and information electronically. It also will give software vendors a platform in which to build features into their products. Tune into the podcast interview.
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5 Top Federal Initiatives For 2015As InformationWeek Government readers were busy firming up their fiscal year 2015 budgets, we asked them to rate more than 30 IT initiatives in terms of importance and current leadership focus. No surprise, among more than 30 options, security is No. 1. After that, things get less predictable.