Tuesday, August 09, 2005

iTnewswire Late Edition: Swann in global expansion plan; Microsoft targets another Rootkit for removal.

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Wednesday, 10th August 2005
IBM Lenovo

  • Optima in NSW Department of Corrective Services rollout
  • Swann in global expansion plan
  • Microsoft targets another Rootkit for removal
  • Cisco posts 11 percent growth in Q4
  • IBM Lenovo
    HOT OFFERS ON SELECT THINKCENTRE� DESKTOP AND MONITOR BUNDLES

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    Optima in NSW Department of Corrective Services rollout
    Local OEM Optima Technology Solutions is underway with phase two of a $2.3 million contract to provide desktops and related services to the NSW Department of Corrective Services. More...

    Related Articles
    Optima unveils partner initiatives
    Govt co-funds Yarra Valley Water IT assessment
    Govt targets pay TV theft


    Swann in global expansion plan
    Australian security and IT peripheral product company Swann Communications has initiated a major international expansion plan with the launch of a new operation in Hong Kong. More...

    Related Articles
    Manaccom opens China operation
    Microsoft-Tata China targets global market
    Microsoft joins Tata in China venture


    Microsoft targets another Rootkit for removal
    Microsoft has posted the monthly update to its Windows Malicious Software Removal Tool, and added four new Trojan horses and one new rootkit to those it eradicates. More...

    Related Articles
    Microsoft issues three critical security bulletins
    Gates sells 16 million Microsoft shares
    Microsoft HoneyMonkeys nit pick


    Cisco posts 11 percent growth in Q4
    Accelerating traction in the SMB space and continued growth in advanced technologies helped Cisco Systems deliver �very solid� results for its fiscal fourth quarter, said Cisco president and CEO John Chambers. More...

    Related Articles
    Cisco drives harder into education sector
    Cisco website breached, passwords reset
    Hackers working on Cisco exploit


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    [ MacSlash Message ] Daily Stories

    MacSlash Daily Newsletter

    ======================================================================
    <a href="http://click.linksynergy.com/fs-bin/click?id=OX36Q3imQxc&offerid=78941.10000016&type=1&subid=0" >Choose&nbsp;from&nbsp;over&nbsp;1&nbsp;million&nbsp;tracks&nbsp;for&nbsp;only&nbsp;99�&nbsp;a&nbsp;song&nbsp;at&nbsp;iTunes</a><IMG border=0 width=1 height=1 src="http://ad.linksynergy.com/fs-bin/show?id=OX36Q3imQxc&bids=78941.10000016&type=1&subid=0" >
    ======================================================================

    In this issue:
    * Microsoft Releases Messenger 5
    * Dvorak on Apple's Insidious Global Domination Plan
    * Apple Doesn't Get The Enterprise
    * Open Source 'Net TV Launches For Mac First

    +--------------------------------------------------------------------+
    | Microsoft Releases Messenger 5 |
    | from the single-protocol-heaven dept. |
    | posted by aaronvegh on Tuesday August 09, @04:28 (Software) |
    | http://macslash.org/article.pl?sid=05/08/09/0941236 |
    +--------------------------------------------------------------------+

    For those of you whose friends all lined up together, independently, and
    decided that MSN Messenger was to be their protocol of choice for instant
    messaging, take note. Microsoft [0]has released Messenger for Mac 5.0.
    This version apparently allows users to keep separate "Personal" and
    "Corporate" accounts in the same client. In addition to some other
    corporate integration features, the client features a new brushed-metal
    look (watch out for flying knives! Here come the Brushed Metal Haters!).
    You'll be able to download it today from [1]Mactopia today, although I
    didn't see it at the time of this posting. However, [2]Adium is there
    right now, and still working -- and looking -- great.

    Discuss this story at:
    http://macslash.org/comments.pl?sid=05/08/09/0941236

    Links:
    0. http://www.prnewswire.com/cgi-bin/stories.pl?ACCT=104&STORY=/www/story/08-09-2005/0004085048&EDATE=
    1. http://www.microsoft.com/mac
    2. http://www.adiumx.com/

    +--------------------------------------------------------------------+
    | Dvorak on Apple's Insidious Global Domination Plan |
    | from the mwah-ha-ha dept. |
    | posted by aaronvegh on Tuesday August 09, @08:16 (news) |
    | http://macslash.org/article.pl?sid=05/08/09/1322202 |
    +--------------------------------------------------------------------+

    One of the things I love about being a MacSlash editor is getting to read
    the various prognostications by the so-called "experts" in the industry.
    While my lack of respect for John Dvorak is a matter of public record, I
    still find reading him to be too enjoyable to resist. I find myself
    persuaded, for example, by the postulation of many that Dvorak spouts
    such outrageous opinions solely to drive traffic to his Web site's banner
    ads. Well John, here are a few more clickthroughs. Today, [0]Dvorak
    wonders when Apple will start selling a shrink-wrapped OS X for generic
    x86 PCs. He opines that Apple is hatching a devious plan to provide weak
    protection from crackers, and then, when the crack is widely available,
    throwing in the towel and selling an official version for all.
    Personally, I think he's full of fertilizer, but there's nothing like a
    radical opinion to spark discussion. What do you think, MacSlash?

    Discuss this story at:
    http://macslash.org/comments.pl?sid=05/08/09/1322202

    Links:
    0. http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,1895,1845259,00.asp

    +--------------------------------------------------------------------+
    | Apple Doesn't Get The Enterprise |
    | from the no-more-star-trek-jokes dept. |
    | posted by aaronvegh on Tuesday August 09, @13:17 (news) |
    | http://macslash.org/article.pl?sid=05/08/09/1822224 |
    +--------------------------------------------------------------------+

    At last, an opinion I can sink my teeth into. There's always been a lot
    of talk about Apple finally cracking the enterprise market, but the
    company's actions have always told otherwise. I [0]wrote about it for
    OSNews a while back, and now I'm getting backup from Rob Enderle, whose
    [1]article about Microsoft Vista alternatives deals the harsh truth about
    Apple in the enterprise. In short, "It doesn't matter what Apple does to
    the product. Until the company can address the need for a multi-year
    roadmap that businesses can refer to, get a stable platform that will be
    deployable over a long period of time, and designate multiple hardware
    vendors clients can bid against one another to ensure the lowest price
    (as well as to avoid getting nailed by internal audit), enterprises
    simply won't buy Apple broadly." Absolutely, one hundred percent true.

    Discuss this story at:
    http://macslash.org/comments.pl?sid=05/08/09/1822224

    Links:
    0. http://www.osnews.com/story.php?news_id=7070
    1. http://www.technewsworld.com/rsstory/45264.html

    +--------------------------------------------------------------------+
    | Open Source 'Net TV Launches For Mac First |
    | from the couh-potato dept. |
    | posted by Trollaxor on Tuesday August 09, @17:19 (news) |
    | http://macslash.org/article.pl?sid=05/08/09/2219253 |
    +--------------------------------------------------------------------+

    Renfro writes, "This [0]internet TV app (codenamed DTV) is open source
    and is like a podcasting app but specifically tuned to video. It manages
    video RSS feeds, plays videos, has a built-in channel guide, and supports
    bittorrent seamlessly. Definitely worth checking out--even though the
    code is mostly cross-platform, they launched with a Mac/Cocoa version
    first."

    Discuss this story at:
    http://macslash.org/comments.pl?sid=05/08/09/2219253

    Links:
    0. http://participatoryculture.org/

    Copyright 1997-2001 Me. All rights reserved.

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    DOWNLOADS GALORE: Wallpaper: A monitor makeover

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    [Osdir-daily] HP works to bring Linux to NonStop servers

    Hewlett-Packard has begun collaborating with universities in an effort to adapt
    Linux for its NonStop servers, a rarely used but very high-end product line.

    URL: http://www.osdir.com/Article6799.phtml
    http://OSDir.com on the O'Reilly Network
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    New White Paper: ESG Report - Lab Tests the Latest NAS Products from EMC

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    New White Paper: Security Considerations for VOIP

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    VOIP has a very different architecture than traditional circuit-based
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    ::::::::::::::::::::: ABOUT THIS NEWSLETTER ::::::::::::::::::::::
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    New White Paper Roundup: Three New White Papers on Better Communication with your Customer

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    3. Hammering the Siebel Communications Server: Why Desktop Load
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    ::::::::::::::::::::: ABOUT THIS NEWSLETTER ::::::::::::::::::::::
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    from TechTarget, the most targeted IT media and events company.
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    [Osdir-daily] Wyse boasts 1, 900-device Linux thin client deployment

    Proponents of Linux thin clients as an alternative to Windows-based PCs got a
    fillip this week with the announcement that a Swiss health insurance firm has
    deployed 1,900 of Wyse Technology Inc's Linux thin clients.

    URL: http://www.osdir.com/Article6790.phtml
    http://OSDir.com on the O'Reilly Network
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    VoIP eNews in your Inbox - August 9, 2005

    VoIP Developer

    August 09, 2005


    Latest Headlines

    TECH-Tip: VPF, Voice (VoIP) Peering Fabric -- The Emperor's New Clothes
    Calls from any LAN, business or otherwise, can be routed through the VPF (Voice Peering Fabric) and then to your LAN and to your desk.

    Sunrise Telecom's New NeTracker Suite Enables Triple Play Manufacturers and Service Providers to Emulate and Troubleshoot Network Services
    Sunrise Telecom, provider of testing and monitoring solutions for voice, video, data services and next-generation digital multi-media, today announced the only complete solution designed to troubleshoot and test next-generation network (NGN) applications in a single...

    CommuniGate Systems Unveils CommuniGate Pro 5.0 Programming Contest
    CommuniGate Systems (a division of Stalker Software) is kicking off a contest at LinuxWorld challenging all programmers to develop the best "voice application" using CG/PL (CommuniGate Programming Language). The top VoIP application developed will...

    ARC International Announces New Versions of the Configurable ARC 700 Core Family; New Core Releases Offer Significant Performance Improvements
    ARC International, developer of configurable CPU/DSP processor cores and application subsystems, announced new releases of the patented ARC 700 processor core family, with significantly improved performance in...

    Rambus Announces Integrated, Optimized PCI Express Solution; Integrated Controller and PHY Work in Broad Range of Applications
    Rambus Inc., technology licensing company specializing in high-speed chip interfaces, announced the availability of its integrated PCI Express solution. This solution consists of


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    Active Directory Tip: Working with the administrator password

    SearchWin2000.com: Active Directory Tip
    August 09, 2005
    ___________________________________
    ISSUE SPONSORED BY: CIO Decisions

    .....................................................................
    IN THIS ISSUE

    -- Working with the administrator password
    -- Can you trust Active Directory's trust relationships?
    -- What's new with status GPOs?
    -- Windows Firewall
    -- Windows Desktop
    -- Acitve Directory white papers

    HEADLINES
    ---------------------------------------------------------------------

    WORKING WITH THE ADMINISTRATOR PASSWORD | By Derek Melber

    The administrator password is a key element to keeping your
    environment secure. But many companies fail to change the password on
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    CAN YOU TRUST ACTIVE DIRECTORY'S TRUST RELATIONSHIPS? | By Laura
    Hunter

    Learn how the trust relationships differ in Windows 2003 as compared
    to Windows 2000. Overall, author Laura Hunter feels the changes are
    an improvement.
    http://searchwin2000.techtarget.com/tip/1,289483,sid1_gci1111920,00.html?track=NL-23&ad=525328&FromTaxonomy=%2Fpr%2F286434

    WHAT'S NEW WITH STATUS GPOS? | By James Michael Stewart

    As your Active Directory environment grows and you create multiple
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    Routing & Switching Tip, Cisco Edition

    SearchNetworking.com: Routing & Switching Tip
    August 09, 2005
    ___________________________________

    ISSUE SPONSORED BY: VoIP Security Resource Guide

    ......................................................................
    IN THIS ISSUE

    -- Cisco router security
    -- Admission control: Security checkpoints at every endpoint
    -- Black Hat exploit underpins need to patch
    -- CCNA Flash Cards, Chapter 3
    -- Cisco certifications with David Minutella
    -- The Missing Link: Brain food

    ADVICE
    ----------------------------------------------------------------------

    CISCO ROUTER SECURITY | by Tom Lancaster

    Two weeks ago researcher Michael Lynn disclosed the exploitation of a
    Cisco IOS vulnerability at the Black Hat conference in Las Vegas. As
    this recent incident has reminded us, network infrastructure is
    critical to our country and our businesses, and poor router security
    could have catastrophic consequences. It also shows the
    vulnerability in a trend I've been predicting for years: running more
    applications on routers and switches. Find out how to lock down your
    routers.
    http://searchnetworking.techtarget.com/tip/1,289483,sid7_gci1113557,00.html?track=NL-31&ad=525153

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    ADMISSION CONTROL: SECURITY CHECKPOINTS AT EVERY ENDPOINT | Cecil
    Christie

    The new security paradigm emphasizes built-in defenses as well as
    distributed detection and response mechanisms that enable the network
    to actively defend itself at every connection. Learn why admission
    control technology is important in the evolving art of network
    self-defense.
    http://searchnetworking.techtarget.com/infoCenter/tip/0,294276,sid7_gci1107301_iid2651,00.html?track=NL-31&ad=525153

    ALSO ON SEARCHNETWORKING.COM
    ----------------------------------------------------------------------
    BLACK HAT EXPLOIT UNDERPINS NEED TO PATCH
    Industry pros say even though a researcher has revealed how a
    malicious attacker can crash Cisco networks worldwide, the risk to
    corporate networks remains in question.
    http://searchnetworking.techtarget.com/originalContent/0,289142,sid7_gci1111771,00.html?track=NL-31&ad=525153

    CCNA FLASH CARDS, CHAPTER 3
    Determining IP routes
    This chapter includes a complete overview of IP routes and then tests
    your knowledge with 63 questions and answers. Even if you're not
    preparing for the CCNA, this is a great opportunity to expand your
    knowledge. (Reproduced by permission of Pearson Education Inc. ISBN
    1587200791, Copyright 2005, Cisco Systems Inc.) PDF
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    CISCO CERTIFICATIONS WITH DAVID MINUTELLA
    Our Cisco cert guru, David Minutella, knows everything there is to
    know about certifications from what is undoubtedly the most
    influential player in the networking industry. As VP of educational
    services for The Training Camp, Dave specializes in basic and
    advanced Cisco courses, including CCNA, CCDA and CCNP.

    Contemplating gaining another Cisco cert? Ask Dave if you're heading
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    the exam.
    http://searchnetworking.techtarget.com/ateAnswers/0,289620,sid7_tax301107,00.html?track=NL-31&ad=525153

    THE MISSING LINK
    ----------------------------------------------------------------------
    BRAIN FOOD | Whatis.com
    EGP is a protocol for exchanging routing information between two
    adjacent gateway hosts in a network of autonomous systems. What does
    EGP stand for?

    Answer:
    http://searchnetworking.techtarget.com/sDefinition/0,,sid7_gci213930,00.html?track=NL-31&ad=525153

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    VoIP ROI: Add It Up

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    Aug. 9, 2005
    How do I attain ROI with VoIP? Let me count the ways: long-distance and local loop; audio and videoconferencing; moves, adds and changes; and personnel savings.
    Also in this Issue
    Negotiating Your Worth
    Don't Believe TCO 'Hype'
    The Costs of Complexity
     
    Top Insights

    Network World: With growing assurances from network administrators that the reliability of VoIP communications has grown by leaps and bounds, many CIOs find themselves evaluating the technology's costs and benefits. This article offers lots of detailed advice on determining the all-important ROI. The advice falls into seven categories: preplanning; determining start-up costs; budgeting for management and training; calculating savings from long-distance and local loop; considering potential audio and videoconferencing savings; factoring in moves, adds and changes; and tallying personnel savings. The abundance of very specific numbers here should win some fans in the finance office.
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    CIO.com: In an ideal world, all of us — CIOs included — would automatically be paid what we're worth. Yet the truth is, it often takes a shrewd negotiator to get the dollars flowing as they should be. The key to negotiating the best salary and package is conveying how you have positively affected the bottom line in former positions, and how you can translate that track record to a new company. This article offers advice on getting one's foot in the door by couching skills in terms a prospective employer wants to hear, as well as tips on closing the deal with an attractive compensation package. Most of the recommendations would work just as well for CIOs who are happy with their current position — but who'd be even happier with better benefits and are willing to negotiate to get them.
     
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    ITworld.com: Global spending on outsourcing continues to rise and will top $50 billion per year by 2007, according to Gartner. However, as with any other strategic move, companies shouldn't be too quick to open their checkbooks. Gartner says companies often fail to fully consider five factors when deciding whether to outsource IT functions: cost, productivity, communications, culture and organizational readiness. For instance, when looking at costs, it's important to go beyond the simple difference in labor costs and factor in expenses for items like communications, international travel and training. Because spending on such items can initially be quite high, your company may not realize significant ROI until one or two years into the life of a project, according to Gartner. The article also offers advice on assessing the other four factors.
     
    ADDITIONAL READING:
    Infoconomy: Total cost of ownership is one of the most popular mantras of the budget-minded CIO, designed to help determine which investments will provide the best value for the company. Too bad then, that TCO comparisons are flawed, according to a recent Enterprise Applications Consulting report. TCO studies, which typically survey 200 projects, do not offer a reliable indicator of product cost over the entire lifecycle, says an EAC analyst. There are too many differences between companies to make the comparisons valid. Supporting the EAC findings, ERP vendor SAP conducted a study that found TCO evaluations by Gartner, Forrester and the META Group (now owned by Gartner) varied wildly — in one case, by $10,000 — in their TCO estimates for similar products. The EAC analyst encourages CIOs to use vendors' TCO evaluation frameworks, such as one introduced recently by SAP, rather than relying on analysts' models.

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    Baseline: I'd like to thank the self-service Internet portal, the e-learning application ... and my CFO and shareholders should be thanking me. These 12 award-winning projects, which gave their organizations the best returns over the past three years, should serve as inspiration for CIOs mulling new investments. The results are truly impressive: One project yielded a return in excess of 5,000 percent, while four others garnered returns of more than 2,000 percent. Brief descriptions of all of the projects are included, though most of the detail is lavished on grand prize winner American Express, which created an Investment Optimization System using Microsoft Excel templates uploaded to a SQL server and then read and analyzed by Microsoft Reporting Services. With the new system, all of Amex' global business units now use standardized financial models and assumptions, with tighter version control and better analytics.

    SearchSMB.com: It's not uncommon for more than 70 percent of a data center's total cost of ownership to be tied up in labor or outsourced services. So reducing administrative and support tasks is a key way to control costs and, hopefully, free up dollars for more strategic projects. This article reviews four options for server consolidation — physical consolidation, re-hosting, logical consolidation and workload optimization — including benefits and risks for each. A table comparing standard and workload optimized environments for several scenarios shows where the most savings can be gained.

    I, Cringely: This blogger turns a jaded eye toward the PC industry, which he says is trying mightily — with little apparent effect — to interest PC users in multimedia technology. This market dynamic has led to what he calls a "war" between two of the industry's biggest and most powerful players, Intel and Microsoft. Redmond is throwing more and more of its R&D, marketing and other dollars toward mobility and gaming, markets showing far more vitality than the moribund PC. And it has chosen IBM as its partner for its xBox game system. This move leaves Intel to partner with Microsoft archrival Apple in a battle that could shape up to be pretty intense. So why should you care? He drops the most interesting bombshell near the end of this piece, when he suggests that an obvious move for Microsoft would be moving a stripped-down version of xBox technology onto enterprise desktops, where it would serve as a thin-client device. Sure, it sounds a little crazy — just like, say, the PC itself did at one time.

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    3 QUESTIONS:
    The Costs of Complexity

    With David Hebert, IT practice leader for The Hackett Group.

    Editor's Note: This 3 Questions originally appeared in Aligning Business and IT Goals.

    Question: What were some of the major costs of complexity Hackett Group discovered in its research?
    Hebert: In general, more complexity results in more costs. When we looked at companies with fewer than 10 applications in their finance functions, there was a 30 percent cost differential compared to companies with more than 10 applications. With HR, we saw a very similar scenario, with an 18 percent difference in cost. Surprisingly, when we looked at companies just doing common applications as a standalone, we saw no dramatic cost correlation. Moving to driving common applications is a step in the right direction but you must look at common standards to really drive cost reduction.

    Question: So it seems as if all companies would want to simplify. What are the primary challenges, and why aren't more of them doing so?
    Hebert: For a lot of companies, customization results from dealing with inherited applications, such as those they obtain with mergers and acquisitions. You have to place a lot of emphasis on change management to streamline your applications, especially in the back office. Also, when IT is an order taker rather than a participant in the process, they just want to build stuff with the latest tools. Simplifying what they already have is not very fun or glamorous for the IT department. But there must be a balance. Simplification can free up resources so they can focus more on innovation.
         Companies that succeed in streamlining their portfolios don't look at process in a vacuum. They don't just make decisions on the process side; they look at how technology can help accomplish what they want to do. It's important to have leadership that will make simplification an imperative.

    Question: With all that in mind, what are some steps companies can take to help reduce complexity?
    Hebert: A CIO needs to understand all of the costs and variables associated with complexity. You need all the variables, or you may not make the right decision. It doesn't make sense to have complexity in areas where it doesn't offer a strategic advantage. If you're going to have complexity, it should be for a very strategic advantage. For instance, Dell took a good look at what it would cost behind the scenes to be able to offer custom-built PCs. They decided to go ahead and do it because it was a very key part of their strategy.
         Companies need to have a measurement process in place. It's not just the number of applications that results in complexity, but the customization inside of them. When we asked companies if they measured the amount of the customization in their ERP systems, the majority of them didn't do so. They made these huge investments in those systems in the '90s; now it's time to upgrade, but they can't cost-justify it because it's so expensive to deal with all of the customization.
         Also, it's important to define what the end state will look like and communicate it so everyone understands. Do you want a single ERP with less than 10 percent customization on a global basis? You look at where you are now and where you want to go, then you can develop a plan for getting from step A to step B.

     
    Also from IT Business Edge: Leveraging Open Source
    Leveraging Open Source gives you a comprehensive view of open source adoption in the enterprise. From Linux's growing role in the mid-tier server market to open source corporate blogging software, the open source movement is making inroads in the enterprise. Click here to sign up!

    By the Numbers

    $2 million
    Surprisingly low estimated cost for a 1-petabyte storage system provided by San Francisco startup Capricorn Technologies.
    Source: ZDNet

    2,736.1 percent
    Rate of return achieved by American Express over a three-year period by building an Investment Optimization System using Microsoft Excel templates that allows all of its global divisions to track their finances the same way.
    Source: Baseline

    $15.3 million
    Approximate worth of financial package awarded to new HP CIO Randy Mott. His annual base salary is $690,000; the addition of performance bonuses and other perks make it considerably more lucrative.
    Source: Forbes

    Breaking Headlines

    Top Tech News: With a nod to the growing importance of customer data integration, IBM has purchased DWL, a privately held developer of Java-based middleware that gives companies a single, integrated view of sales prospect and customer information, even if the data comes from diverse sources. DWL is the ninth company that IBM has acquired for its Information Management division in the past four years. It will position IBM to take on Oracle, which recently bought the assets of Context Media, a provider of content-integration technologies. Oracle also is buying a controlling stake in i-flex, a provider of banking software, which has been a traditional stronghold for IBM.

    Computerworld: The strengthening U.S. economy is creating a moderate uptick in the salaries of technical workers, according to Foote Partners. The market research firm found that pay for non-certified and certified technical skills rose 3.8 percent and 1.3 percent, respectively, through the first half of 2005. Benefiting the most were workers with skills in operating systems (up 8.2 percent), networking and internetworking (up 5.1 percent) and databases (up 4.3 percent). Executives interviewed for the survey cited a general rise in capital spending, growth in IT project portfolios and a tightening labor market as major factors leading to salary increases. Some, though not all, of the execs said rising salaries for offshore workers also had an effect. Offshore outsourcing consultancy neoIT has also noted "moderate growth" in U.S. IT salaries.

    PCWorld.com: A 2003 Environmental Protection Agency report estimates that roughly 50 million computers are trashed each year. Most go to landfills, as only 10 percent are recycled. Disposal of PCs is a big issue for businesses, whose annual castoffs can number in the hundreds or even thousands. Some states, notably California, Maine, and Maryland, have passed e-waste legislation; 26 other states are considering doing so. And now there's a national effort. Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) and Sen. Jim Talent (R-Mo.) are leading a bipartisan effort to encourage e-waste recycling. In March, they introduced the Electronic Waste Recycling Promotion and Consumer Protection Act of 2005, which gives tax credits to consumers and businesses that voluntarily recycle e-waste. One issue is how such a program would be funded. Sen. James Jeffords (I-Vt.) has suggested charging a deposit on electronics that would be refunded when items were recycled.

    Emerging Trends

    Datamation: Two states, Michigan and Utah, recently adopted legislation that makes it illegal for companies to send e-mail advertisements to addresses appearing on state Do Not Contact lists. Using the Michigan law as an example, the author notes it does not mention spam, as attempts to regulate it would contradict the U.S. Can-Spam Act and recent Supreme Court rulings. Under both laws, he says, consumers can sue, even if they subscribed to an affected company's e-mail newsletter. Perhaps not coincidentally, Michigan is charging $7 a month per 1,000 addresses to help companies "clean" their lists by comparing them to its Do Not Contact registry. If more states decide to collect such fees, it will impose an unreasonable cost on legitimate businesses and will likely not discourage spammers, the author says. He discusses several other concerns related to the laws.

    CFO.com: Wireless technology research firm ON World estimates that companies spend up to $1 trillion a year replacing industrial equipment before they really need to. A desire to staunch such unnecessary spending is one reason interest in wireless sensors is growing. A universal specification for the maturing technology, known as ZigBee 1.0, was recently approved, which analysts believe will give the market for wireless monitoring systems a push. In-Stat says the market could grow at a compound annual growth rate of 200 percent from 2004 to 2009, resulting in shipments of some 150 million units in 2009. With wireless sensors, equipment can be replaced right before it fails, resulting in significant savings, says an ON World analyst. Energy producer TransAlta says it achieved an ROI within six months for wireless sensors used to monitor pumps, generators and motors. The biggest knock against them is the cost, up to $200 each, but an Accenture researcher says prices could drop to as little as $10 in the next three years.

    ZDNet: Storage prices continue to drop, but how low will they go? Probably not much lower than systems offered by a San Francisco startup called Capricorn Technologies. The company has created blueprints which help do-it-yourselfers create their own systems; it has also sold some of its systems, marketed under the name PetaBox, to several universities and research departments. Capricorn's systems cost an unbelievable $2 a gigabyte, which works out to about $2,000 for a 1-terabyte system or $2 million for a 1-petabyte system. For comparison's sake, a 1-petabyte system from EMC would likely cost $20 a gigabyte. An EMC spokesman quoted in the article, his voice practically dripping with scorn, says systems like the PetaBox do not offer the same kind of high-end performance as EMC. Indeed, concerns that the performance may not meet enterprise needs are seconded by a Taneja analyst and by a ZDNet reader in a message thread following the article.

    IT Business Edge: Maximizing IT Investments
    Issue 32, Vol. 3
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    About the Editor

    Ann All covered a variety of business topics as a newspaper reporter before switching to automated teller machines — which, unbelievably, are just beginning to migrate to a Windows-based platform and more modern networking technologies like TCP/IP — as the editor of online trade publication ATMmarketplace.com.
    She can be reached at investments@itbusinessedge.com.