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Content tagged with Executive Insights & Innovation posted in July 2008
Google Plans Venture Capital Fund
News  |  7/31/2008
The company's VC arm will be led by David Drummond, Google's senior VP of corporate development and chief legal officer.
The CIO Was Right: Web 2.0 Is Dangerous
Commentary  |  7/30/2008
CIOs have gotten a reputation -- rightly or wrongly -- for dragging their feet when it comes to Web 2.0 initiatives like social networks and application mash-ups. The reason: security. Now it appears they may have been justified.
Looking For Anyone In Particular?
Commentary  |  7/30/2008
In the current economic climate, hiring new people is something that's put on the back burner at many organizations -- especially if there's any threat that a "reduction in headcount" might be in the cards. But, that doesn't mean no one is hiring IT people. In fact, certain talent is still hard to find and highly sought after at some organizations.
iPhone 2.0 Outrage Tearing Up Apple Discussion Boards
Commentary  |  7/29/2008
On the heels of the MobileMe meltdown, it's now appearing that Apple's iPhone 2.0 software update is meeting with, er, more support issues than one would have expected. In fact, the outcry on Apple's own discussion boards has reached a crescendo, with numerous unhappy iPhone customers complaining that they're getting no comfort from Cupertino. Here's what they're saying.
Apple Mans Up To MobileMe Mess
Commentary  |  7/28/2008
Will MobileMe mail users be mollified by Apple's just-updated status page, which gives a progress report on how the Mac maker is recovering from the meltdown? Mmmm. Judging by the comments I received in response to my post last week, What's Behind Apple's MobileMe Meltdown, I wouldn't bet the iPod Touch on it.
Memo To Forrester: Vista Is Not The Problem
Commentary  |  7/25/2008
Everyone's atwitter (not that Twitter) about the new "enterprise trends" report from Forrester Research, which stuck the shiv in Microsoft's virtual back by comparing Vista to "new Coke." Wrong; Vista is actually like Sprite -- it's a decent alternative to Windows XP, though not to everyone's taste.
Microsoft 'Done' With Yahoo, Ballmer Says
News  |  7/25/2008
The Microsoft CEO dismissed Yahoo as a major player in the Internet business, despite previously offering more than $40 billion for the company.
You Think You Have Problems?
Commentary  |  7/24/2008
Despite cuts to both capital and operating budgets, the CIO of Oakland County, Mich., is bullish on the prospects of keeping his IT group efficient and serving his customers effectively.
Down To Business: The Mind-Set Of The Indian IT Exec
Commentary  |  7/24/2008
After a week of meetings with a few dozen locals in three Indian cities, a clearer picture emerges.
Microsoft Windows Exec Kevin Johnson Jumps To Juniper
News  |  7/24/2008
Microsoft won't replace Johnson but will split Platforms and Services into two groups that will report directly to CEO Steve Ballmer.
How Often Do You Meet With The CEO?
Commentary  |  7/23/2008
Less often than last year, report many CIOs. Is that a good thing or a bad thing in terms of how seriously IT is taken as a business partner?
What's Behind Apple's MobileMe Meltdown
Commentary  |  7/22/2008
Whenever I see Apple stumble, which admittedly isn't often, I stop and wonder why. And then I remember it's because the same invariant laws of computing, which apply to us all, also pertain to the Mac maker. With MobileMe, and the severe outage which accompanied its attempted launch last Friday, we see that no company can, er, mess with the cloud. Here's what I think really happened.
HP Ties Project Management Into Code's Operational Lifecycle
News  |  7/22/2008
By tying project and portfolio management into existing technology optimization products, HP helps data centers answer difficult questions about what software can be fixed and what should be replaced.
Apple 'Product Transition' Chatter Sparks Web Speculation
News  |  7/22/2008
Popular theories about Apple's "state-of-the-art" product, hinted at Monday, include an update of the MacBook and a multitouch tablet computer.
GM, Power Companies Join To Make Plug-In Vehicles Work
News  |  7/22/2008
The automaker wants to be leading the pack when electric cars reach the nation's roads.
Facebook Facelift Doesn't Answer Social Net's Big Question
Commentary  |  7/21/2008
Facebook, that personal scrapbook you get to fill out on company time -- I'm joking; it's really a valuable business tool -- just got a facelift. Personally, I was impressed at its cleaner-looking home page, until my teenage daughter took one look at it and said: "Oh, they made it look more like MySpace."
Who's The Boss?
Commentary  |  7/21/2008
If you're in charge of IT, who's in charge of you? It depends a lot upon what industry you're in, according to a new survey by Forrester Research, which queried CIOs about their reporting relationships.
Venture Investments Are Up, But Not For Startups
News  |  7/21/2008
A MoneyTree Report reveals venture capitalists invested $7.4 billion in 900 total deals in the second quarter.
Sony Ericsson Sees 97% Drop In Q2 Profits
News  |  7/18/2008
The handset manufacturer sees weak sales in the mid and high-end markets and plans to cut 2,000 jobs.
5 Things AMD Needs To Do To Save Itself
Commentary  |  7/18/2008
Pity poor AMD. The scrappy semiconductor vendor has cut a particularly impressive product swath since 2003, when it launched its Opteron server processor and followed up with worthy dual- and quad-core architectures. But the financial rewards haven't been commensurate with AMD's technical prowess, and yesterday Dirk Meyer was named CEO. Here's what he needs to do to get AMD back on the beam.
Business Intelligence Is Not An Oxymoron
Commentary  |  7/18/2008
Certainly not for this pizza CIO. BI tools let local managers stop e-mailing spreadsheets and concentrate on what they should be doing -- serving guests.
CIOs Uncensored: The IT Outsider Might Be Your Best Hire
Commentary  |  7/17/2008
Hiring non-IT talent from another part of the organization will pay benefits, both near-term and long range.
Controversy Dogs TWA 800 On 12th Anniversary
Commentary  |  7/17/2008
It was 12 years ago tonight that a 747 loaded with 230 people took off from JFK in New York, gently tilted itself over the Atlantic toward Paris, and exploded. Amid the many memorials flooding the Web today, almost none are focusing on the still-lingering controversy over the official cause of the disaster.
Tomorrow's CIO: Biz Cred Counts
Commentary  |  7/16/2008
With today's economic convolutions, it goes without saying that CIOs and tech leaders need a firm grounding in business and finance, and that will only increase in importance in the future. How firm a grounding? Here's a hint: Look around for a business unit that needs management help.
Steve Jobs Decision Behind iPhone Apps' Achilles' Heel
Commentary  |  7/16/2008
Steve Jobs is ruining the new iPhone apps! OK, I guess should explain. Take a perfectly good Apps Store entry, such as the AIM client. It won't work unless it's front-and-center on your phone. That is, AIM won't run in the background on your iPhone, meaning you can't launch it and then go over and check your e-mail, browse the Web, or listen to music.
Does Your IT Wallet Feel Half Empty Or Half Full?
Commentary  |  7/15/2008
Budget time is approaching at many companies. Perhaps it's already there at your company. How is the economy affecting IT spending plans at your organization?
IT Is A Recession-Proof Profession
Commentary  |  7/15/2008
A new survey puts more tech jobs in a list of top 20 recession-proof professions than any other single category. Does IT feel recession-proof to you?
Google Sued For Selling Ads On Parked Domains
News  |  7/15/2008
A class-action lawsuit alleges that Google committed fraud, business code violations, and unjust enrichment by selling ads that were unlikely to generate conversions.
iPhone Bucks Gloomy Handset Sales Forecasts
News  |  7/15/2008
Gartner lowered its forecast for mobile industry growth as it becomes apparent that the economic downturn will affect sales of mobile devices worldwide.
iPhone 3G Teardown Revealed On Video
Commentary  |  7/15/2008
If you're interested in looking beneath the iPhone's pretty case and seeing what makes it tick, the folks at TechOnline have posted a couple of "Teardown TV" videos, which pry the 3G model apart and reveal the chips inside.
Video: iTrip To iPhone 3G Store
Commentary  |  7/13/2008
I had a great time videotaping the launch of the iPhone 3G on Friday at Apple's big "glass house" store on 59th Street in New York City. The fanfolk were friendly, famed CBS news analyst Jeff Greenfield was gracious, and the Apple public relations woman was, er, just as peachy nice as one would expect (watch the end of my three-minute video to see).
First Pictures From iPhone Store
Commentary  |  7/11/2008
I'm at the Apple Store on Fifth Avenue in Manhattan, where customers are lining up to buy the iPhone 3G. Check out my photos.
Alex d'Arbeloff, High-Tech Pioneer, MIT Benefactor, Dies
News  |  7/10/2008
The co-founder of semiconductor test equipment maker Teradyne died this week in Boston at age 80.
Video: Zude Mashes Up MySpace-Like Social Networking
Commentary  |  7/9/2008
The latest installment in my whirlwind social-networking world tour is a video look at Zude, the hottest mashup-your-own-Web-page-until-you-drop -- that's the most succinct definition I could come up with -- platform out there. (Part one of the "tour" was this look at SocialText.)
'Old' iPhones In Brisk Demand By Jailbreakers
Commentary  |  7/9/2008
I'd almost given up trying to find a fresh angle on the 3G iPhone -- Pogue and Mossberg have weighed in, so what could possibly left for us wretched B-listers? Then I found this post, on an Apple forum: "I was thinking of selling my old iPhone for the new 3G. I was flooded with emails with people wanting to buy it ASAP for almost the full price. Am I missing something?"
Is Your Company Still Hiring IT Workers?
Commentary  |  7/8/2008
According to Bureau Of Labor Statistics, IT jobs are a glimmer of light in a darkening employment picture. Good news but surprising, given an anticipated retrenchment in IT spending. Will that bullish employment outlook last?
Under Pressure: Citi's New CIO As Change Agent
Commentary  |  7/8/2008
The CIO shuffle continues in the financial services industry, with struggling Citigroup looking to its new tech chief to help orchestrate "one of the great turnarounds in U.S. corporate history."
When Is It Unethical To Consider A Job Offer From A Vendor?
Commentary  |  7/7/2008
A scandal is brewing in Massachusetts about whether an executive at a vendor violated state conflict of interest rules by allegedly offering a state official--in this case a department CIO-- a job. What sort of rules do you or your company have about job offers from vendors?
Google Gets Hammered On Day-Care Cost Surge, Sergey Brin Insensitivity
Commentary  |  7/6/2008
You know you've got a public-relations crisis on your hands when Valleywag ditches its preferred format of gossipy innuendo in favor of serious journalism. But that's how it's playing out, now that New York Times business columnist Joe Nocera has
Greener Grass In Financial Services
Commentary  |  7/2/2008
As my colleague Marianne Kolbasuk McGee pointed out in a recent blog, while the financial services industry is under a dark cloud these days there appears to be green grass in some organizations (literally and figuratively), at least in terms of IT positions. Take a look at Fidelity Investments, which just hired two new tech chiefs away from competitors.
Are You An 'Emotionally Intelligent' Leader Or A Dimwit?
Commentary  |  7/2/2008
Recession or no recession, dot-com boom or bust, bull or bear market, it doesn't seem to matter. For as long as I've been covering tech career trends (about 15 years,) employers have complained about shortages of IT professionals who have the right balance of "people skills" and tech-skills du jour. However, now there's a new skill shortage developing--a scarcity of "emotionally intelligent" IT leaders. Have you tapped into your emotional intelligence today?
TV Jumps Shark For Generation Net
Commentary  |  7/2/2008
It can't really come as a surprise, the item the other day in Variety, reporting that the median age of viewers of broadcast-network television is 50. Here's the question, though: Have the young'uns deserted TV because the Internet is so much more compelling or because the former is even more unwatchable than episodes of Tila Tequila?
Risk Assessments In Information Security
Commentary  |  7/1/2008
When I read a book like Against The Gods: The Remarkable Story Of Risk, my wife sees it as proof of just how hopelessly boring I am. But it's actually a lively book, exploring how the understanding and quantifying of risk became a foundation for decision making in business and other disciplines. Which makes it's a good read for anyone responsible for information security strategy or implementation.
Customers More Satisfied With PC Call Centers
News  |  7/1/2008
While the industry gets high marks for courteousness, that positive is undermined by low effectiveness in handling customer issues and poor communication, a report says.
Tech Careers Looking Shiny In The World Of Money
Commentary  |  7/1/2008
The beleaguered financial services industry can be a bleak place to work these days. But not to Denis Stypulkoski, the new CIO of start-up firm Tygris Commerical Finance Group, where he says optimism and opportunity abound.
AMD's Quad Opteron Firing On All Cores
Commentary  |  7/1/2008
Reports from the field indicate that AMD's quad-core Opteron processor has rebounded big time from problems surrounding its launch late last year. Several resellers tell me that customers have been snapping up significant numbers of quad-core Opteron systems, including high-end, four-socket servers with 16 cores In all. Meanwhile, AMD has rounded out its Opteron lineup with a host of new parts.


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