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Congratulations to Cutter Consortium Senior Consultant Ken Collier! His latest book, Agile Analytics: A Value-Driven Approach to Business Intelligence and Data Warehousing, was named one of the “11 Books to Recharge Your Leadership Skills” by CIO-Insight. A leading expert with Cutter’s Business Intelligence and Agile Product & Project Management practices, Ken is the developer of the Agile Business Intelligence (Agile BI) methodology, which combines agile methods with data warehousing, business intelligence, and advanced analytics. He has successfully adapted agile techniques to DW/BI to create the Agile Analytics style. He continues to refine these ideas as a technical lead and project manager on several agile DW/BI project teams. As CIO-Insight points out, Ken’s latest book is …

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Of the many challenges facings today’s CIO, perhaps none is more daunting or critical as the development of its IT personnel — especially in light of changing workforce demographics and evolving technology trends. It begs the question — “is the age of the ‘deep IT technologist’ behind us?” The September 2011 Cutter IT Journal, with Guest Editor Robert Scott, will examine both the opportunities and challenges in recruiting, retaining and developing the skills and competencies of the 21st Century IT staff. Proposals of interest are due 23 June 2011. To respond, please visit http://www.cutter.com/content-and-analysis/journals-and-reports/cutter-it-journal/callforpapers02.html

 
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I keep six honest serving-men  (They taught me all I knew);  Their names are What and Why and When  And How and Where and Who. – “The Elephant’s Child,” by Rudyard Kipling Green IT practice translates the green IT strategies, plans, and policies in the day-to-day workings of the organization by using its transformational and operational capabilities. My approach to green IT in practice is based on four distinct yet interrelated dimensions of business: economy (why), technology (what), process (how), and people (who). I have discussed this approach in detail in my book Green IT Strategies and Applications.1 Reiterating my oft-expressed view of green IT in practice: unless the greening effort is tied closely to the …

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May 312011
 
Green IT in 2011

According to my calendar, it’s time to revisit International Green IT Awareness Week. Pop by their site and sign up for some of the webcasts they have scheduled for this week — I’m sure you’ll find sessions on some key Green IT topics that are useful to you. Green IT continues to be a topic Cutter covers regularly — both because cost savings is a critical agenda item in nearly every discussion of IT — and because we believe it’s a good thing to do! We supports International Green IT Awareness Week’s mission to “initiate, promote and support green IT discussions, emboldening employees with the knowledge and innovative ideas to reduce the environmental footprint of …

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Dispatched to Saigon in 1963, a fact finding mission reported back to Washington in two voices. The military envoy was quite optimistic on the prospects for success in Vietnam. In contrast, his counterpart from the state department was very pessimistic. Puzzled by the variance between the two reports, JFK inquired ”You two did visit the same country, didn’t you?” A variant of the question often comes to my mind during the interviews I do in preparation for my executive workshops. The variance between what I hear from one exec versus what I hear from another makes me wonder whether the two are actually working for the same company. For example, the past week an interviewee from a company …

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We seem to invest heavily in IT service management solutions that are highly dependent upon agent technologies for the visibility needed to “drive” (i.e. access, secure, manage and control) the desktops, laptops and servers within our IT infrastructure.  Are these applications so compelling that we trust traditional agent-based management models which are inherently vulnerable to the same risks as the endpoints they manage? Is it wisdom to introduce the resultant IT operational handicaps of being unable to identify over 15-20% of our infrastructure’s endpoints1 due to issues of hidden, missing, outdated, or misconfigured agents required for anti-virus, inventory and patches? Given the significance of the functionality of these mission critical IT management and security applications, …

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May 172011
 
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On one of the LinkedIn groups I belong to, someone just posted this discussion item: “Is Open Compute for Everyone? I guess the cloud is no longer technology’s darling. All the IT buzz now surrounds the Open Compute Project. If you are not familiar with the Open Compute Project, take a quick look at http://opencompute.org. You will see that this is really the brainchild of some bright engineers at Facebook, and the results are impressive.” Here’s the comment I posted in reply, and I think I missed several more points in the heat of the moment: “‘The cloud is no longer technology’s darling?’ Nonsense. If you look at the blogs, the conferences, the papers by …

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Back in December, when making predictions for the upcoming year regarding important BI trends, I wrote that we could expect to see use of text mining and analysis increase in 2011, just as it has almost every year since we’ve measured its adoption (see “What Lies Ahead: BI and Data Warehousing Predictions for 2011,” 14 December 2010). A major driver behind this trend is that organizations are now faced with more and more unstructured data sources that they want to use to optimize their BI, marketing, and various performance management practices. In particular, Web, contact center, surveys, maintenance logs, sensors, and consumer social media sites are all contributing to the exploding amounts of unstructured data …

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May 112011
 
Quality is Personal

My friend Gadi got himself an FN Automatic Rifle. I, on the other hand, picked the Uzi submachine gun. Both of us were content with our choices. Gadi liked the superior range of the FN. I, on the other hand, was going for the reliability of the Uzi in desert conditions. I was still traumatized by my experience with the FN six years earlier during the paratroop raid on Umm Qatef in the Six-Day War [1] - the rifle choked on me in the sands of the Sinai desert. Other than potentially serving as a kind of a club, it was completely useless after I fired a few shots in anger. We were hastily picking and assembling our …

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Since October of last year I have been spoiled rotten by an engagement in San Francisco. The client is great to work with, JetBlue flies non-stop from AUS to SFO, I have a view of the Golden Gate bridge from my hotel room and I really enjoy Michael Tilson Thomas conducting the San Francisco Symphony. The only complaint I have is that I added a few pounds due to the eclectic cooking of San Francisco restaurants. Not a bad way to make a living… As car rental and parking rates in San Francisco are murderously high, I subscribed to zipcar. I am now able to pick a car for a few hours and meet with …

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