Recently in Application Category
Its has been a long time since I last blogged regularly but I now have my blogging mojo back together. I am still with Microsoft although in a slightly differing capacity than this time last year when I was wearing a Groovy Visio mantle in Europe, now I wearing a Projected Visio cape in the same area (yes the pun sucks).
As I type blog posts are being deposited hither and thither regarding the RTM last Friday of Microsoft Office 2010, SharePoint 2010, Project 2010, Visio 2010 (hey did we copyright that 2010 thing, no, dang should have).
For those of multiple 100's of thousands of you who have down loaded the public beta you will already know this is an order of magnitude improvement in our client and collaborative server offerings, those of you who have not tried it out yet, get hold of the trial download as soon as they come out, you will (I hope) be pleasantly surprised.
I have not had as much fun since Notes/Domino 4.6 was released back in the days when it mattered.
Over the next few days I am going to post a couple of blogs on the key new / rediscovered capabilities of my adopted software children plus some thoughts on my peripatetic coverage (subject to Volcanic eruptions) of the countries that I have some responsibility for.
Oh and RTM for the uninitiated - Released To Manufacturing
Visio, It's a drawing Jim, but not as we know it
Websites, like rust, never sleep, so how oxidised are the page impressions you offer-up to your visitors? Did you put up your site in the good times? Does it now reflect the changed commercial environment? If not, your corporate image may look as tarnished as an old rust bucket.
While you don't have any control of the recession, you can optimise what you do control by building a recession-proof Web site. Firstly, get someone independent to take a look and make an assessment. Secondly, take soundings from the departments or disciplines represented on your site and see how they see the world and what their priorities are. Too many sites are making promises that no longer ring true. It could look like your just whistling in the dark if your organisation doesn't reflect the new reality.
So what makes a recession proof web site? There are words that shouldn't be used i.e. jargon that doesn't wash. Images that shouldn't be seen, for example, picture's that paint too rosy a picture. It's all about finding the right resonance - a line somewhere between sunlit uplands and soup kitchens. A site that converts better will decrease cost per acquisition and, in turn, will increase marketing spend efficiency. A site improved for conversion can withstand economic storms.
Optimising your site should be a scientific process that is accountable, efficient, and measurable. It should be one that gives your existing customers confidence, attracts what new business can be had and critically one that your staff can believe in. Over the next few days I shall be blogging in more detail about what can be done to achieve a rust proof web presence.
The ESRI user conference last week brought together the brightest and best in Geographic Information Systems (GIS) and geospatial collaboration. I went to see what was happening. Geographic information is getting 1] Richer (improved meta data) 2] More detailed spatial data (20 sq cm resolution) 3] Multi-dimensional (3D without glasses) 4] Centralised (pay as you go data sets for mash-ups).
There were a broad range of applications from local authorities fixing problems - FixMyStreet, to a much better understanding of pluvial flooding (surface rain water) through to the intelligence services able to detect objects in a hostile environment - Top secret. With mapping linked with GPS and GNSS the applications are getting interesting. BMW is experimenting with pre-emptive headlights linking the car's beam to Satnav so that they turn as you round a corner and dip them in built up area. - Daft maybe but the start of increasing interoperability between maps and machines.
Quality and consistency are still major challenges (some data is only updated every year) and licensing the cost restraint. However, Web 2.0 technologies, combining Web Services and SOA (Service Oriented Architecture) are facilitating data and processes on-line by combining geospatial and mainstream business data. The oblique imagery of Blom Urbex allows you to locate, view and measure buildings, structures and urban landscapes in over 1000 European cities this allows, for example, insurance companies to better evaluate risk and emergency services to manage disasters.
- Trust - is the originator who they say they are?
- Security - are the intermediate hosts fully locked down?
- Privilege - Can the administrators of the system access my content?
- Compliance - Does information storage meet SOX (or equivalent) regulations?
- Control - Can I impose an archival regime?
- Ubiquitous - Is access to content easily achieved outside of the firewall or disconnected from the network and then does it stay in a guaranteed secure environment?
- Housekeeping - Can corrupted or accidently deleted information be easily recovered?