Other
Commentary
2/16/2006
09:54 AM
Commentary
Commentary
Commentary
50%
50%

You've Got A Lotta 'Splainin To Do

Listen to a podcast version of this newsletter


In This Issue:
1. Editor's Note: You've Got A Lotta 'Splainin To Do
2. Today's Top Story
    - Gates Says Security Is Job One For Vista
    Related Stories:
    - Microsoft: IE Zero-Day Bug Not Worth Patching
    - Microsoft Updates Anti-Spyware Utility, Renames It Windows Defender
    - Is Windows Safer?
3. Breaking News
    - Google Taps BearingPoint For Enterprise Search
    - Office Live To Go Live
    - AOL Tests Chinese U.S. Site
    - Blogs Make New Sport At Turin Games
    - Consumers, Providers Differ On E-Health Record Plan
    - Oracle Buys Sleepycat, Is JBoss Next?
    - Study: Linux Cheaper, Easier Than Windows
    - Climate-Change Model Harnesses Home Computers
    - Performance Management Driving BI Spending
    - British Computer Hacker Fights Extradition To U.S.
    - Military Rations For Sale On eBay
4. Grab Bag: News You Need From Around The Web
    - Exiled Tibetans Protest Google Censorship
    - Olympics Web Site A Winner For NBC
    - It's Like Lending To A Friend, Except You'll Get Interest
5. In Depth: Mobile Computing
    - Apple's Intel Notebooks To Be Faster Than Expected
    - McAfee Debuts Security Tools For Mobile Devices
    - Wireless Firms Eye Instant Messaging
    - Motorola Unveils BlackBerry Competitor
    - Microsoft Acquires Mobile Search Provider
6. Voice Of Authority
    - A SIM In Every (Laptop) Pot
7. White Papers
    - Virtualize Your Data Center
8. Get More Out Of InformationWeek
9. Manage Your Newsletter Subscription

Quote of the day: Communication

"Good communication is as stimulating as black coffee and just as hard to sleep after." -- Anne Morrow Lindbergh

"Let us make a special effort to stop communicating with each other, so we can have some conversation." -- Judith Martin

"I wish people who have trouble communicating would just shut up." -- Tom Lehrer


1. Editor's Note: You've Got A Lotta 'Splainin To Do

With apologies to Ricky Ricardo, arguably the most famous line from one of the most popular TV shows of my youth was echoing in my head last night as my husband and I were dragging ourselves home from the gym.

The IT Guy was telling me about how he's heading out of town in a few weeks to present to the company president and 300 top executives. (I can't mention the name of the company, sorry.) It's an internal trade show type of deal, and IT Guy is going to be talking about what he does for most of the day, which involves server virtualization, and why it's such a beautiful thing because it requires fewer resources, saves the company money, and so on.

Then he started telling me some of what he was thinking about using in his "pitch," and that's when I began thinking of Ricky Ricardo.

I understand the very broad strokes of what server virtualization is and how it works, or at least I thought I did. But I began blinking really hard when IT Guy started explaining about virtual NIC cards and virtual printer drivers. Turns out--and this is true--that "pretend" servers have other "pretend" gizmos to help them out. Kind of like your kid having a make-believe friend who has other make-believe friends. You can't see any of them, but you know they're there because other people are talking to them. (I suggested to IT Guy that he use this analogy during his presentation, but for some reason he didn't think his top execs would find it all that illuminating.)

But my point is this: If IT professionals and their groupies have trouble explaining ourselves to each other, how can we expect business executives to follow the bouncing ball? Because you know that when you're talking tech with most business types, they're really thinking about how to get their merchandise from the assembly line to their distributor in Japan--or whatever their big problem of the day is.

The longer I'm at this, the more I'm convinced that poor communication is at the heart of the chasm that has always existed between IT and business people. I'm not blaming ITers for the existence of this problem, of course, but I am saying that you can go a long way toward fixing it. And if you don't do it, nobody will.

Nobody else *can* do it, either. The more complex the technology, and the more interwoven the pieces, the more we need people who know how to "translate tech" into language the rest of the world can understand. Most business folks don't or can't speak tech, but ITers can certainly speak business.

What do you think? Do you have any funny or disastrous stories of miscommunication between IT and the business side? To read more, or to comment, check out my blog entry.

Johanna Ambrosio
jambrosio@cmp.com
www.informationweek.com

Correction: Yesterday's Editor's Note, "Is Unix In Trouble? Readers Say We're Asleep At The Keyboard," was incorrectly attributed. The author was Charles Babcock.


2. Today's Top Story

Gates Says Security Is Job One For Vista
Microsoft's chairman demonstrates the next-generation operating system's security capabilities, including network access protection and InfoCards features, in his RSA Conference keynote.

Related Stories:

Microsoft: IE Zero-Day Bug Not Worth Patching
A new zero-day vulnerability in Internet Explorer is such a small deal, Microsoft said Tuesday, that it won't patch the bug but instead will wait until it releases Windows XP SP3 in late 2007 to fix it.

Microsoft Updates Anti-Spyware Utility, Renames It Windows Defender
The new release is a significant upgrade that includes improved detection and removal and a simpler interface

Is Windows Safer?
Cracks in Windows security have taken their toll on Microsoft and its partners. Now, the software vendor says, it has turned the corner and is ready to battle rivals for a leadership position.


3. Breaking News

Google Taps BearingPoint For Enterprise Search
The deal will let BearingPoint customize Google's search features to allow specific businesses--including pharmaceuticals, banking, brokerage, and aerospace--to manage their documents and other information.

Office Live To Go Live
Microsoft will make its promised Office Live betas available today. Office Live is parsed into three offerings: a free base-level version supported by advertising and two for-pay versions that add functionality.

AOL Tests Chinese U.S. Site
The idea is to woo Chinese Americans with a native-language version of its English site. Meanwhile, AOL has not announced its intention to re-enter the market in China.

Blogs Make New Sport At Turin Games
A quick surf yields online diaries dedicated to individual athletes, random comments from people hanging out in Turin, and thousands of links to news stories and pictures.

Consumers, Providers Differ On E-Health Record Plan
Most health-care providers think the government will meet its goal of having digital health records for most Americans by 2014, while most consumers are unaware of the goal.

Oracle Buys Sleepycat, Is JBoss Next?
Sleepycat's open-source Berkeley DB will expand Oracle's embeddable database line.

Study: Linux Cheaper, Easier Than Windows
Stung by Microsoft's charges that the total cost of ownership of Linux was higher than Windows, open-source software interests sought this week to refute the claim in a survey of IT organizations that lists various developments--many of them new--in which Linux undercuts Windows in price and management complexity.

Climate-Change Model Harnesses Home Computers
The BBC, Britain's Meteorological Office, Oxford University, and the University of California at Berkeley on Tuesday launched a program and software to mobilize idle time of home computers to better predict climate change.

Performance Management Driving BI Spending
Performance management is one of the three big factors driving growth in the business-intelligence market, but most companies still are trying to figure out how to do it effectively, says a Gartner analyst.

British Computer Hacker Fights Extradition To U.S.
Gary Mckinnon was arrested in June following charges by U.S. prosecutors that he illegally accessed 97 government computers--including Pentagon, Army, Navy, and NASA systems.

Military Rations For Sale On eBay
It's illegal to sell military rations, but eight individuals--including military personnel--were hawking Meals Ready to Eat on the auction site, a watchdog group told Congress this week.

All our latest news

Watch The News Show

In the current episode:

John Soat With 'How Is The Internet Like Love?'
Like love the Internet is ... about giving, understanding, and having unintended consequences.

Elena Malykhina With 'Stop Cell-Phone Viruses!'
Drew Carter, senior manager of mobile at McAfee, advises us on how to prevent cell-phone viruses.

Mitch Wagner With 'Money Talks'
A quick look at how much some big-shot tech execs are making.


----- The latest research, polls, and tools -----

A Week's Worth Of Dailies--All In One Place
Have you missed an issue or two of the InformationWeek Daily? Or want to check out some recent quotes of the day? Check out our Daily newsletter archive page and get caught up quickly.

Are You Satisfied?
Participate in the InformationWeek 2006 National IT Salary survey. It's fast, it's convenient, and it's confidential.

Do You Access InformationWeek.com From A Mobile Device?
Many of our readers do, and we want to ensure that you get the best experience when using our content. So we've created a PDA-friendly page for our news stories, with similarly streamlined content pages that should make the experience a good one. Check out our latest enhancement.

-----------------------------------------


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

Exiled Tibetans Protest Google Censorship (AP)
Scores of angry Tibetans on Tuesday protested Google's launch of a censored version of its search engine in China that adheres to that country's government restrictions on free speech.

Olympics Web Site A Winner For NBC (Washington Post)
Traffic is up 63% from the Athens Summer Games in 2004 and up 400% from the Salt Lake City games in 2002.

It's Like Lending To A Friend, Except You'll Get Interest (New York Times, reg. required)
Prosper.com started operations last week, offering a mixed brew of eBay, Friendster, and the local bank.


5. In Depth: Mobile Computing

Apple's Intel Notebooks To Be Faster Than Expected
Apple Computer will start shipping its first Intel-based notebook this week, but with faster processors than originally specced out.

McAfee Debuts Security Tools For Mobile Devices
The software platform wraps antivirus, firewall, content-filtering, anti-spam, and anti-spyware features into a single package.

Wireless Firms Eye Instant Messaging
T-Mobile, Vodaphone, Orange, and 12 other companies have announced plans to roll out IM services targeting 700 million mobile users.

Motorola Unveils BlackBerry Competitor
The Q phone, with a "Qwerty" keyboard, is expected to be Motorola's flagship entry into the developing 3G battles.

Microsoft Acquires Mobile Search Provider
MotionBridge technology, which is sold to carriers, helps find and retrieve data on a mobile phone by reducing the amount of information users have to input through keypads.


6. Voice Of Authority

A SIM In Every (Laptop) Pot
Welcome to the next chapter in digital convergence: Intel is planning to integrate a 3G mobile phone (the broadband data portion of it, anyway) into every laptop, according to the news out of the 3GSM conference in Barcelona. Alexander Wolfe explains more.


7. White Papers

Virtualize Your Data Center
Transform the way you provision and manage your systems and applications. Virtualization helps you reduce IT costs and improve business agility by enabling you to consolidate, maintain, scale, and adapt your computing solutions more quickly and with less disruption.


8. Get More Out Of InformationWeek

Try InformationWeek's RSS Feed

Discover all InformationWeek's sites and newsletters

Recommend This Newsletter To A Friend
Do you have friends or colleagues who might enjoy this newsletter? Please forward it to them and point out the subscription page.


9. Manage Your Newsletter Subscription

To unsubscribe from, subscribe to, or change your E-mail address for this newsletter, please visit the InformationWeek Subscription Center.

Note: To change your E-mail address, please subscribe your new address and unsubscribe your old one.

Keep Getting This Newsletter
Don't let future editions of InformationWeek Daily go missing. Take a moment to add the newsletter's address to your anti-spam white list:
InfoWeek@update.informationweek.com

If you're not sure how to do that, ask your administrator or ISP. Or check your anti-spam utility's documentation. Thanks.

We take your privacy very seriously. Please review our Privacy Policy.

InformationWeek Daily Newsletter
A free service of InformationWeek and the TechWeb Network.
Copyright (c) 2006 CMP Media LLC
600 Community Drive
Manhasset, N.Y. 11030

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Register for InformationWeek Newsletters
White Papers
Current Issue
InformationWeek Tech Digest, Nov. 10, 2014
Just 30% of respondents to our new survey say their companies are very or extremely effective at identifying critical data and analyzing it to make decisions, down from 42% in 2013. What gives?
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.