Netbooks are all the rage

Netbooks are the hottest new technology products out there right now and I confess I find them pretty intriguing as well.  About 10 years ago I bought IBM’s z50 workpad and it cost even more than today’s netbooks, but could do a lot less. I’ve taken a few of the netbooks for a drive and they are a great solution for most people. Are they robust enough to be your full-time computer – maybe.

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20 years with email

It’s been over 20 years since I got my first email address. Of course I didn’t know what to do with it – after all an email address is pretty useless if no one else has one  – like the fax machine, a classic illustration of the network effect.  Eventually one of my friends back home got an address so we’d send each other jokes. I know, millions of dollars in technology and equipment and we were sending knock-knock jokes back and forth. Sophisticated, right? Of course we only checked our mail occasionally – typically we had to call each other just to say “hey go check your mail”.

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Managing Costs vs. Solving Business Problems

I recently read an interesting McKinsey Quarterly article on Managing IT during a downturn. IT spending and costs, like so many business functions, wax and wane with business cycles. Spending increases gradually over time before a shock or other external event occurs requiring significant and rapid cost cuts.

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Documentation, or thoughts on IT’s biggest nemesis

In a previous professional role I had the opportunity to meet and advise businesses of all sizes on their IT operations. I noticed something common to almost all organizations was a lack of adequate documentation.

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The Pleasures of Occasional Physical Labor

Volunteering for several organizations in the Providence area allows me an opportunity to meet my neighbors, help out community members and break the occasional sweat. I’m on the board of our local community garden, work on the plant sale committee for another organization and finally I’m a designated schlepper for another organization. Given work and family obligations there is only so much time available so I choose to take a leading role in some organizations while taking smaller roles in others.

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