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2/23/2007
04:55 PM
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A Good Read
This article was one of the most useful, informative ones I've read in your publication in months ("What Makes The Cut?" Feb. 5). The history behind some of the most successful open source projects was interesting, and the way the author wove in the key features of a successful open source project was seamless and helped the article to flow.

The only negative was the endless discussion of the OpenVista project. Who cares? It's a vertical application that only a small percentage of your readers are even aware of at all. I bleeped over that stuff like a Russian surname in The Brothers Karamazov.

Craig Iskowitz
Executive VP, Operations
Kestrel Technologies
New York


Beyond Whitelisting
Whitelisting alone is only part of the zero-day solution ("Antivirus 2.0: The Bouncer Approach," Jan. 22). Hackers could conceivably replace an approved executable with one of their own with the same name. The operating system must also have some way of certifying the executable. Several methods are possible. Hash coding is possible, although the hacker could post the new hash code along with his executable. Encryption is another alternative. However, current encryption methods impose a severe overhead penalty.

Jim Dollens
Adjunct Professor,
Nova Southeastern University
Roswell, Ga.


Time Spent Is Time Saved
Dr. Stephen Kirk writes that all Windows-based computers go into sleep mode after a period of nonuse ("Unhealthy Solution," Feb. 12). It's a simple setting change to keep Windows awake all the time.

Also, doesn't the e-prescribing method go directly to the pharmacy? Wouldn't this save his patient time? Is it possible that by e-prescribing, the patient's medicine might be ready at the pharmacy by the time said patient arrives to pick it up?

Doctors leave treatment rooms all the time; I don't see how it will hurt the patient for the doctor to take two minutes to e-prescribe the med if it will save time at the drugstore and ensure accuracy.

Linda Bicking
IT Manager, The Print Shop
Naples, Fla.


Value Of Experience
I felt compelled to write after reading your article on the youth movement ("Business Technology Needs A Youth Movement," Feb. 5). As a 50-year-old in the IT business for more than 30 years, we're becoming smaller in numbers in the workforce. A 2006 Intelliquest Fall Study showed that 50-year-olds are now less than 20% of the corporate workforce.

Several of my colleagues and I agree that younger employees are quicker to learn and multitask. But there's a downside to that. They always have to have an answer immediately, and sometimes that answer isn't correct. Sometimes in the IT old-school world, things needed to be tested several times before they were fixed, while the younger generation tests a solution once and considers it done. They also tend to be hasty and need instant solutions versus researching an issue to get the correct solution.

What an older IT person brings to the table is business acumen. Older staff can teach the younger staff about the IT business as a whole. Younger staff tend to look at issues as an immediate and local problem.

Product and technology innovation isn't just limited to younger staff. Many of us understand aligning business and IT objectives with innovation. But since there's always a very large price tag associated with it, sometimes that message is delivered correctly by younger staff to the main decision makers.

A successful IT department should have balanced staffing, a good cross-fertilization of skill sets, and not just a team of Gen Xers driving the car.

Chuck Frans
Consultant, Frans & Associates
Atlanta

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