Stories by Stephen Bell

Oracle loses ground at Fonterra

One of the software giants slugging it out for prime position within NZ dairy cooperative Fonterra's ERP operations appears to have lost a significant advantage after the cooperative tipped SAP financials to replace its Oracle system.

Toyota finance arm upgrades SAP

After steering clear of an upgrade of its ERP software for almost five years, Toyota Financial Services has become the first Australasian user of SAP's R/3 Enterprise, the latest version of the company's core offering.

Open ERP package takes on giants

Melbourne-based Mid-Comp International has adopted an open-source approach to its Java-based Odyssey distribution and accounting product, but does not expect users to fiddle with the core software on a regular basis.

If you take an OSS to water, does it get Weta?

Weta Digital, the special effects company behind the Lord of the Rings film trilogy, got great value out of a switch to Linux but found support and memory problems a "can of worms".

Agile coding needs light management

Agile software development techniques need to be complemented by a project management style that accommodates agility, says Sanjiv Augustine of Virginia-based developer CCPace Systems.

Skilled programmers shy away from writing viruses

Virus writers are hardly ever good programmers, says David Perry, global director of education or "evangelist"* for US-based anti-virus company Trend Micro; and that works to the advantage of virus detectors and virus victims.

Internet community more constructive says Cerf

Vint Cerf, head of the board of Icann, the body that oversees internet domain administration internationally, says the effort to come up with a structure for such a body was "in turmoil from day one".

Westpac opts for fat over thin

Westpac New Zealand is considering Linux as a future operating system for back-end systems at branches and even its mainframes.

Cyberterrorism threats 'real'

Jay Garden, the man charged with protecting New Zealand's critical infrastructure says a cyberterrorism threat by an al Qaeda associate last week is just the latest in a series since September 11 last year.

XML the way forward: TechBooks tech chief

Publishers, online or hard-copy, should get into XML as early as possible in the production process, as it will ease the task of rendering the publication in a range of formats and media.