Thank you for your bold Editor's Note in the July 11 issue ("Taking Steps To Prevent Child Porn"). Unfortunately, many executives will be dodging this crucial issue for the sake of job security.
I would suggest your readers get a copy of Michael Reagan's book, "Twice Adopted." One can then learn how destructive child abuse is.
Keep carrying the torch for these culprits to be brought to justice.
The story on the CEO accused of having child pornography on company computers points out that this type of conduct can happen anywhere at any time.
The only avenue open to a company that discovers what appears to be child pornography on a company computer is to report the matter at once to law enforcement. Failure to do so may expose both the individual and the company to very serious criminal liability. Every FBI office has a unit qualified to efficiently handle digital evidence. Many state police and city police departments also have high-tech units.
When child porn invades the workplace, it's absolutely a company issue. And it's vital that every IT professional understand that if they encounter it, the company must have in place a plan for reporting it and for cooperating with law-enforcement officials.
Senior Managing Director, Computer Forensics, and
Computer Forensic Operations, Kroll Ontrack
Slow But Sound Approach
I refer to the item in your July 4 issue regarding IT in the health-care industry, including the reference to our government's seeming reticence in not pushing for more of it ("Congress' Healthier Approach").
Has it not occurred to you that, with our government's considerable experience of failed and grossly overbudget software projects (such as the IRS/EDS debacle), its reticence is pragmatic and fairly sound? The last population group we should ever wish to expose to such a debacle would be the sick and infirm.
If one examines the ratio of failures to successes in large government software projects then the present slow approach is completely justifiable.
By The Numbers
InformationWeek says Research In Motion didn't "meet the expectations of analysts," who were looking for more than 600,000 new subscribers when only 592,000 materialized
("...Unless You're In Handhelds," July 4, 2005). In other words, RIM's growth was 23.7%, but not 24.0%, and we're supposed to believe that that difference is in any way significant.
President, Stevens Creek Software, Cupertino, Calif.
I build custom systems for my clients, and I don't have time to drop off my supplier's site and look up processor speeds because the numbering system AMD uses doesn't indicate true processor speed.
And forget trying to E-mail AMD directly. Its E-mail contacts are about six pages deep and you have to register with the company to even send an E-mail for information or clarification.
CEO, Systems Group Consulting, Fort Lauderdale, Fla.
Keep A Positive Attitude
I have sympathy for Christopher Green but advice, too ("Livelihood At Stake," June 27, 2005). Is your bitterness getting in the way of your future?
After 25-plus years in telecom R&D, I, too, was shown the door three years ago. I lowered my expectations, opened myself up to doing new things, and after seven months found a job.
I did this while women as a whole were cut by 18% from the IT workforce, and I'm in the same age bracket as Mr. Green. I'm also in Chicago, a tough job market where a major telecom company dumped thousands of skilled workers.
A midcareer crisis isn't hopeless. But if you let yourself become hopeless, bitter, and resentful, you greatly reduce your attractiveness as a job candidate.
Question Of Quality
Scott McNealy wants us to accept the premise that the chaos and anarchy that make up the technology industry are never going away, so we might as well just trash the standard of ROI and instead promote COE (cost of exit) ("Beware A Hidden Cost In Buying IT," June 27, 2005). This shameless hucksterism should be stopped dead in its tracks.
Leaders like McNealy should look at the IT industry's spotty product record, leverage the incredible pool of talent and common purpose, and put a stop to the instability and lack of standards that drive costs through the ceiling. Then we wouldn't need to be so concerned as to how much it would cost to change.
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