Blogs

Key Advantage of Open Source is Not Cost Savings

"Computer Economics recently conducted a survey of visitors to its website regarding the perceived advantages in the use of open source software. Although not a scientific sample, the results are nevertheless startling."

We got IMAX, ExLax, and now Ajax. WTF is next?

We got IMAX, ExLax, and now Ajax. WTF is next?

"Where can you find Flickr and Apple in the same room? At the AJAX Summit of course. An insider report from the press-free zone where the future of webdev is being mapped out." by Jonathan Boutelle for SiliconValleyWatcher

"The O'Reilly/Adaptive Path AJAX Summit, held Monday and Tuesday in San Francisco, was a "geeks only" affair."

Jonathan offers insights and lots of links to Ajax demo's and developers.

Tiger Woods & Why BI Tools are Awful, by Paul Kedrosky from Infectious Greed. "Recent readers of this site may not realize that last year I wrote an OpEd for the Wall Street Journal on the trouble with Tiger Woods: I argued he swings too hard."

You gotta check this out. Yes, it is ajax related. Yes, Paul has a demo in Flash of Tiger Woods swing, but considers ajax and offers caution on jumping in too fast.

Did I mention Tiger Woods? Just did it - your take. You gotta go vote now.

...and I came across this link Feedtagger on Steve Rubel's site. "...allows you to "tag" your feeds under different headings." Nothing really new, but check it out. That is a pretty a common feature in most advamced cms and blogging apps.

Blogging with Smarts and Guts

The ever generous and insightful Steve Rubel from Micro Persuasion offers the most down to earth advice for any business about who should be blogging for the company. Steve says, "Blog from the Gut of Your Company, " USA Today has a big story asking why CEOs aren't blogging in droves. I think they are making a bigger deal out of this than is warranted. Often the most interesting corporate blogs are the ones that are written by the rank and file. They come from the passionate "gut" of the company, not necessarily from the top."

Enterprise Blogs For Employee Training

I came across three articles about employee training recently. The first one is an IBM PR piece, the second from Management Issues and the third is from CFO.com. Of course, the IBM solution fits in with there SOA (Service Oriented Architecture). However, I wonder if any content management system that supports XML, RSS, and webservices would serve the same purpose as a learning tool as well as fit into an open SOA - I think so.

SOA Goes to School, By Erin Joyce, from Jupiter   "In a global study of over 300 chief human resources offices, IBM (Quote, Chart) found over 60 percent of HR professionals operating in mature markets had difficulty identifying and developing the critical employee skills and talents that are vital to remain competitive.

The 2005 IBM Global Human Capital survey also said more than half of the CEOs surveyed believed their staffs do not have the skills to move into new markets and capture emerging growth opportunities. IBM calls the trend "The Menace of Maturity." The term suggests that companies a bit long in the tooth are likely to see atrophy in their ability to train employees swiftly."

Both of these studies focus on how to retain workers and get workers up to speed on new job requirements. Since I know the most about my own solution, I will give you my take. Ideascape offers the people in your organization a platform to create a gigantic learning and development environment securely on the Net. An interactive platform where more people, both inside and outside the business, can relate to each other; one where employees, instructors,  clients, customers, vendors, and partners inspire and challenge each other to improve and sustain the business. If your people are continually exposed to new thoughts and are discovering new ideas both within your organization as well as outside of it, they will continue to learn, to update their skills, to stay "fresh" to the changes that are happening.  The world is changing at an ever-faster pace; in order to keep up, you have to stay on top of what's happening!  So, if you want fresh ideas from your people,  Ideascape has everything you need to brainstorm, sketch, and develop ideas across the organization that will move people to action and get them ready to tackle new challenges.

Training the key in the war for talent, From Management Issues, "Britain's employers are embracing training as a way of retaining and getting the most out of employees in a tough labour market. Research from the journal IRS Employment Review has suggested training budgets are set to increase as employers struggle to ensure workers have the skills they need to do their jobs, and that managers can get the best out of them.

Its poll of 68 organisations found nearly nine out of ten said a key objective of training was to ensure that employee skills were up to scratch – a reflection of the difficulty employers have finding the right people in a tight labour market."

We have an enterprise blogging system that supports every type of media (rich text, rss, podcasts, and images) available. The system offers a great deal of interactivity using blogs, forums, and wikis, which gives everyone the opportunity to learn from instructors as well as each other. The simple nature of blogging applications keeps the learning material archived and updated since employees are blogging about it with instructors.

CFO.com offers ideas on meeting training needs using internet based exchanges.

Online trading hubs stage a comeback. But this time, there's a twist. From CFO.com, "When David Mroz, a manager at Shannon Precision Fastener, needed to buy a new LCD projector for a training class, he didn't head to Staples to hunt down a bargain. Nor did he go online to search out the best price on the product. Instead, the quality manager at the Madison Heights, Mich.-based Shannon put his prospective purchase up for bid on the Internet."

Globalization - Handle With Care

Any organization that conducts business on a global basis has to be concerned about war, terrorism, tariffs, regulations, and bone-headed politicians.

From Edge Perspectives, Fragility of Globalization, John Hagel writes, "...warnings for those of us who take globalization for granted. Make no mistake about it: globalization is a fragile process - there is nothing inevitable about it. As it unfolds, it deeply threatens entrenched economic and political interests. Those interests may spark a backlash and we may well find ourselves thrust back into a much more protectionist era."

John Hagel has set me back on my heels. I never thought much about the "fragility of globalization". I've been doing the Washington read on things like "The Flat World" from Tom Friedman and I believe he says something like, no 'N' countries will ever go to war if they're partners in the same supply chain. What's more, I get caught up in the bloggy clouds and believe the momentum for globalization is full steam ahead without interruption. I need to zoom-out and look at the big picture.

Anyway, Mr. Hagel continues that "... the talent market is having a profound impact on reshaping both the economic and political landscape of the world." Which leads me to this next piece where a goup of people are helping to educate others.   We strongly believe that ideas can come from EVERYWHERE; the initiative with the Uganda Digital Bookmobile is exciting and should be supported by all of us.

US Businesses Dumbing Down.

U.S. companies failing to transfer critical knowledge , from Management Issues. "Many U.S. organisations are failing to capture critical knowledge and experience from older employees approaching retirement and few seem able to transfer valuable knowledge to newer employees, according to research from consultants Accenture."

Accenture interviewed more than 500 full-time U.S. workers between 40 and 50 years of age.

How can so many US Businesses be so short sighted? I gotta toss this in... Ideascape is a platform for enterprise blogging, bookmarking, and idea discovery with workflow, conversation, & decision-making management. Employees blog about their daily work activites (tacit knowledge), which is captured, disseminated, and archived. It creates a gigantic learning and development environment. A digital meeting place for employees to find, discover, and share ideas while learning and having fun, which improves the performance of the orgainzation.

"Blogging constitutes a new form of decision-making. Expertise location, i.e., knowledgebase management is antiquated. If you have a problem, you don’t want a database; you want a person or conversation that can help – hence the growth of the blogging medium. Herein, of course, lies the implications for business. People are using blogs to discuss and debate everything from politics to Chapstick." Goodblog, from What I Learned at the Blogging Conference.

Candor In The Workplace

Now I got you, you SOB! You're mine. Funny but a serious problem that exist in every organization. On Critics, Criticism and Remarkability, Seth, "What people are afraid of isn't failure. It's blame. Criticism."

Social Software, Whatever?

Danah Boyd writes, " I’ve been meaning to write a paper on The Significance of ‘Social Software for some time, but… In the meantime, i’ve written an abstract for public criticism."

"In this paper, I will explore the contributions of social software. I will argue that there have been notable technological advancements, but that their significance stems from the rapid iteration of development in ongoing tango with massive user participation. In other words, the advances of social software are neither cleanly social nor technological, but a product of both.

I will explicitly address three case studies central to the narrow scope of social software - Friendster, blogging and Flickr. I will discuss how tagging, audience management (such as ACLs) and articulated social networks are neither technological advances nor social features, but emerge as a product of collective action and network affects. While parts of these technologies have been built in research, the actual advances are impossible to construct in a laboratory due to the sociological effects necessary for maturation."

The "rapid iteration of development in ongoing tango with massive user participation" is right on target. She is opening her research to anyone that is interested and that wants to particpate. I bookmarked it and tagged it with socialsoftware and research on del.icio.us.

What can businesses learn from this? From a marketing angle, check out the posts from Evelyn and Hugh.

Watch the Stories You Make Up About Your Customers Evelyn writes "Marketers are simply notorious for it: we segment, and slice and dice the population and make broad-ranging assumptions. We make up stories about sets of customer..."

make your customers the marketing department from hugh on gaping void is about what he and his partner sig believe. Sig: "Make the customer integral to the process, make the customer the central player in "The Flow"" and Hugh:  "Make your customers the marketing department."

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