Friday, April 30, 2010

Google Becomes a Distribution Channel: Dealing with Piracy on YouTube

Finally, a level-headed and appropriate way to deal with copyrighted content on YouTube. The way it works is YouTube uses a content ID tool to flag copyrighted material and allows the owners to decide what to do. If owners allow the material to stay online they are rewarded by a share of the advertising profits. This allows companies to use YouTube as a promotional vehicle and turns Google (YouTube's owner) into a media distribution channel. While this is not a perfect system, it is far better than the existing format where media companies sue their fans for posting clips on YouTube.

(submitted by Tom)

Death by PowerPoint: Need We Say More?

As if we needed yet another example of how painful bad PowerPoint can be, this N.Y. Times article shows that the true enemy of the U.S. Army is PowerPoint. Funny as this may seem, apparently it is causing a real headache for the Army and other related defense agencies. Even if you don't read the article you have to click on the link to see the worlds most complicated PowerPoint slide.

(submitted by Joel)

Netbooks- The Proof is in the Numbers

According to a Wall Street Journal article, it turns out with all the hype and excitement around netbooks there is a trend away from Netbooks back to more powerful mainstream laptops. Although the article points out that others are opting for smartphones and the iPad. What this article really points out is that there are a variety of mobile computing options out there and popularity of a product still depends on function and need.

Vendor Analysis: Collaborative Optimization Tools

In case you missed it Jason Busch, from Spend Matters, looks at optimization providers Trade Extensions and CombineNet. While most of our community knows a significant amount about these providers, it is useful to see how outside analysts view these companies and their offerings.

(submitted by Walter)

The Future of Data Visualization: BI Applications for the iPad

BI applications for the iPad (and other related devices) are likely to be change the way we interact with data. What makes these new tablet PCs potential game changers, namely the iPad and the Android tablet (due out later this year), is that they are especially helpful for those that work with multi-modes of data (text, graphics, charting, even voice). Now the first set of BI visualization tools for the iPad have been released. Now users can enjoy a kinestheic experience with their data through an iPad. The article below discusses two current BI apps from MeLLmo and QlikTech, which offer varying degrees of data visualization. These apps make connections to data that is stored and processed in the cloud including Cognos, SharePoint, and Microsoft Reporting Services. Also, based on the article it appears that SAS is developing a mobile style app too.

Be sure to watch the video at the bottom of the article.

(submitted by Walter)

Friday, April 23, 2010

Apps, Apps, Apps- So Many Apps

On the heels of the iPad launch and as a follow up to last week's posting about Android Apps, this article discusses how we are becoming overwhelmed with the number of Apps on the market. Research cited in the article points out that users tend to gravitate towards the popular Apps instead of browsing the thousands of Apps available. Thus, users only end up seeing the top 1% of available Apps. Sadly this trend is likely to keep up as the number of Apps being developed, and the variety of platforms, explodes. Who knows, we may need a Google App, just to search for Apps.

Facebook- Conquerer of the Web?

Facebook formally announced the launch Open Graph, a series of application programming interfaces (APIs) for developers to integrate Facebook into web sites all across the web. In essence this allows any web page to become integrated into the fabric of Facebook. The implication here is if all web sites are connected through Facebook the utility and usefulness of Google becomes diminished. While this sounds ominous, it is unlikely that it will play out this way. There are many roadblocks in the way of an all Facebook web, not the least of which are the litany of privacy issues that emerge (something Facebook is notoriously bad at addressing). But it is interesting to see the titans clash over the future of the web.

(Submitted by Helen)

iPad- Profits on the Inside

In case you are one of those waiting for the price to come down on the new iPad, it might interest you to know that Regardless of how the product turns out, one thing is for sure, the new iPad is built for profits. Apple’s true costs for the Wi-Fi 16 gigabyte flash memory version selling for $499 has been estimated at just $260. So if you are keeping score at home, on the first day, Apple made approximately $80,895,000 (300,000 units * $269.65[499-229.35])…not a bad first week!

(submitted by Judi and Walter)

Where's the Customer Service? Mining Customer Feedback With Text Analytics

Restaurant chain Wendy's is using the Clarabridge Analytics solution to mine text based customer feedback. Drawing on sources such as, emails, call-center notes, web submissions, and social media, the solution will deliver reports on all aspects of customer service. Of real note is these reports will be almost real time sending feedback from a customer to a corporate dashboard in a matter of minutes. Feedback will go straight from a cell phone in a restaurant almost instantaneously to the highest echelons of the organization.

(Submitted by Walter)

Friday, April 16, 2010

Cool Business Apps for Android

Here are 10 Android apps for the Android phone. Now for those who are iPhone users or hardcore Android users, these will seem pretty humdrum, but even the most jaded of users has to be impressed with the "Fake a Call" app (slide 7).

There's No Such Thing As A Free Tweet

In a move that was inevitable, Twitter is finally going to attempt to make money. The new "promoted tweets" ad campaign works like Google's Adsense, that displays related links when users conduct a search. Twitter's campaign will display sponsored tweets when a user does a search. This leaves us to wonder, can Twitter make money at this, will the users rise up in revolt, or is this just another ho-hum development in the over-hyped world of Twitter?

(submitted by Tom)

Putting Analytics to Work

Tom Davenport, author of Competing on Analytics, has a new book out titled Analytics at Work: Smarter Decisions, Better Results. The article below is an interview with Davenport in which he discusses his view on analytics in the organization including, BI, ERP, tension with IT departments, and developing an information driven strategy.

(Submitted by Walter)

Coming Soon: Microsoft vs Google (again) in Online Productivity Apps

Next month, Microsoft Corp. will release Office 2010 into an IT world that Google Inc. has been reshaping as use of its Google Apps service has spread to organizations like the Los Angeles city government and Genentech Inc.
With its release of Office 2010 on May 12, Microsoft will complete an effort to move its extensive portfolio of applications to the cloud, offering its business and government customers a new way to deliver services to users.

(Submitted by Bharath)

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

The Future of the 3D Visualization is Here!

The Zebra Imaging released a product for the architecture community which outputs a holograph visualization from CAD data. The device is a thin piece of plastic which comes in a variety of dimensions. The product has reportedly been used in other areas such as military planning, automotive manufacturing and industrial design.

Editors Note: This is really, really cool!

(Submitted by Mike Chovan)

That's Clever- Using Data to Save Money and Improve Sustainability

UPS is using technology and advanced analytics to save millions of dollars and up to 1.4 million gallons of fuel each year while making their drivers safer. The trucks are outfitted with special telematics technology that gathers and sends data to a central database. Using advanced analytics, the data is analyzed resulting in a highly efficient fleet of trucks. The system can uncover defective parts that need replacement or repair, identify opportunities for cost savings, and support safe driver practices by monitoring seat belt usage and frequency of trucks being put in reverse. In terms of sustainability, the telematics system has helped UPS to reduce idling in the trucks thus cutting back on emissions and fuel consumption.

(Submitted by Judi Carithers)

Wasted Effort - Compliance Does Not Equal Security

A recently published report by Forrester, sponsored by security company RSA, assessed the data security practices of enterprises. Enterprise security programs protect two types of data: secrets (assets that confer a competitive advantage) and custodial data (assets that they are compelled to protect). What the report found is that when enterprises are over focused on compliance they neglect protecting the secrets. As an example, enterprises devote 40% of their security budgets to compliance management, but secrets consist of two-thirds of a company's information portfolio.

Orcs, Dwarves, and Gnomes at Work- Gameification of the Corporate Environment

This article explores how multiplayer games and virtual worlds are being considered for use in the corporate environment. Gameification refers to using gaming technology for purposes outside of entertainment. Citing Stanford researcher Dr. Byron Reeves's new book Total Engagement: Using Games and Virtual Worlds to Change the Way People Work and Businesses Compete, which argues that with global competition employee collaboration is becoming a critical differentiator. Reeve's points out that games such as World of Warcraft and virtual worlds like Second Life can help with "morale, communiction, and alignment all while honing skills like data analysis, teamwork, recruitment, leadership, and more." Even Google CEO Eric Schmidt was recently touting this phenomenon.

For those that track the millennials, the concept of gameification is often cited as one of the key differentiators in their abilities.

Friday, April 2, 2010

YouTube College Applications

While this development was inevitable, it is interesting to finally see this in action. Tufts University is allowing applicants to submit an optional one-minute YouTube video says something about the potential student. The administration notes that the video submission is optional and not part of the evaluation criteria. However, with the power of rich visual media, it is hard to imagine that video submissions do not provide a subtle advantage for those that submit them.

The Future of the Tablet

With the imminent release of the iPad (it debuts in selected stores this weekend) there is a lot of buzz being generated. However, the real question is what happens post-launch, not only with the iPad, but with the tablet market? As previously noted, the tablet market was uninspired and somewhat languishing, but with Apple's entry into the market there is a renewed focus and vigor. CrunchGear author John Biggs predicts the evolution of the tablet computer over the next two years.

(Submitted by Simon Rycraft).

2010 ERP Vendor Analysis Report

Panorama Consulting just released their 2010 ERP Vendor Analysis Report. This includes their findings on implementation costs, satisfaction, and benefits realization. The report covers 20 ERP software vendors, broken down into 3 tiers.

It’s a Long Way to 4G Nirvana

A few weeks ago, the Tech Advocacy Newsletter provided some basic definitions offering to make sense of the various G’s of wireless technology. As a follow up here are two articles that take the discussion further, including a new book entitled The New World of Wireless: How to Compete in the 4G Revolution, by Scott Snyder. One of the referenced articles is a transcript for a interview by Knowledge@Wharton with the author. What can we expect when 4G is finally rolled out? When can we expect this to happen? What has to happen to make it possible? What is the “digital swarm”?

(Submitted by Judi Carithers)

Supplier Social Networking Tracking

The Spend Matters blog just ran an interesting story about software providers that tracks information about suppliers in the social networking universe. Setting news alerts to track a supplier is easy, but these tools are do not track the various social media outlets (blogs, wikipedia, YouTube, etc...). The article notes two tools that offer this functionality.

(submitted by Helen Clegg)