Stories by Kevin McKean

Faceless e-learning sessions get interactive

Many organizations undertake training that is important to strategic initiatives such as product updates and revenue generating programs but estimating the total cost of ownership, and the return on investment, for any development program is no easy task.

New intelligence on business intelligence

With annual spending on business intelligence software now more than US$8 billion and growing by more than $200 million per year, we thought it was essential to examine the factors driving -- and limiting -- the adoption of these increasingly important data tools.

Reusing old code

Adopting an SOA design philosophy can reduce costs while making IT more nimble. Once, during a tour of a modern vehicle building plant, Eric Newcomer was startled to come upon an ageing VAX -- the original minicomputer -- controlling some machinery.

Industrialized fraud

It sounds trite -- heck, it is trite -- to point out that IT has revolutionized business. But consider for a moment that the same methods are being used to boost the efficiency of financial fraud.

The CEO's dilemma

Having watched yet another TV news program probing the deep mystery of why the U.S. economy isn't producing more jobs, I want to offer a simple explanation in the form of a quiz. It's called "The CEO's Dilemma."

The ‘IT is dead’ fallacy gets another run

Newsweek this week is the latest publication to climb on the bandwagon of the “IT is dead” movement. This flap started back in May, when the Harvard Business Review published an article titled, IT Doesn’t Matter.

The ASP choke hold

The ASP is one of those dotcom era fads that turned out to be more enduring than its description suggests.

The wireless dilemma

New technologies don’t usually flood a market all at once. More often, they gain a few niche uses and then — if successful — spread from there.

Planned obsolescence

One of the real satisfactions of IT comes from finishing a large technology upgrade. You raise a glass of champagne to that new datacentre or storage array and congratulate everyone who helped build it. At that moment, the furthest thing from your mind is how to junk it.

Opinion: Web services: too cheap to meter

In the early days of atomic energy, when safe, abundant nuclear power seemed just around the corner, the chairman of the Atomic Energy Commission bravely predicted that electricity would soon be "too cheap to meter."

Chip wars brings cost control

Competition IS usually good for customers — less fun for those in the race. The Intel-AMD battle is a good example.

The Linux inflection point

Remember when smoking was cool? Anyone who lived through the 1980s and '90s witnessed a remarkable transformation in attitudes about lighting up. After nearly four decades of health warnings, public service announcements, and rising lung cancer rates, the pendulum of public opinion swung suddenly and decisively against the hapless smoker.

Revolution or Evolution?

These are revolutionary times in the computer business. It's not just that a federal judge wants to break up mighty Microsoft Corp. The very concept of a PC is changing radically.