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This web page is titled "Favorites" because it contains links that emphasize both the GOOD and the BAD examples of Information Technology implementation.

(Written 2001-04-07) ComputerWorld October 30, 2000 issue has the first of a two-part series titled "TOP 10 DISASTERS". Some of the horror stories that are in my entry of 2000-07-22 made the top ten list and some of them are new to my knowledge. There is also a list of stories that are "Dishonorable Mentions". Almost all of these stories are ones for which there is a public record as a consequence of law suits. For every horror story that involves litigation there must be a thousand others that didn't make it to the courts. Two common themes are that nobody seems to learn from their mistakes and you are never to big to fail miserably.


(Written 2000-07-22) ComputerWorld "The Newspaper for IT Leaders" is an excellent source of true stories of how some of the biggest names in the Information Technology business have made a miserable expensive mess of the business of some of the biggest non-IT companies in the World. See the November 1, 1999 issue to learn how IBM   botched a $112 millon ERP project at Hershey Foods Corp. And in the same issue learn why Deloitte & Touche was sued by W. L. Gore & Associates Inc., maker of the waterprof fabric GoreTex, for $10 million. See the November 8, 1999 issue to learn how Deloitte & Touche caused the same kind of problems for Whirlpool Corp. In that article Whirlpool's management gets 50% of the credit for making the wrong decisions. The mistakes are not all made by the IT people. See the artilce I wrote elsewhere on this web site. See the October 25, 1999 issue to learn why Philadelphia Public Schools were printing payroll checks  for dead and retired teachers but many of  the ones that were alive and well and working were not getting paid.See the December 13, 1999 issue to learn about the United Way of America terminating a $12 million contract with Cap Gemini of America Inc. and about the U.S. Chamber of Commerce filing suite on October 15, 1999 against Cap Gemini after terminating a 10-year $75 million outsourcing deal with Cap Gemini. Cap Gemini counter sued for $5.3 million for services rendered.


(Written: 1999-12-07) One of the components of Reliability Functionality is Event Logging. There was an article in the August 1999 issue of Visual Basic Programmer's Journal titled: "Track Those Errors -- Create a logging system that lets you analyze your app and identify errors." Author: Chris Barlow. It's rated in the table of contents as BEGINNER level programming but I think it is a little higher than that. I down loaded the code and used the test application to try out the technique. It works very well. The technique uses a severity level variable to control the amount of logging that occurs. In the example the severity level is hard coded but you could easily change that to be stored in an application INI file and settable from a user preferences option on the application menu. The technique could be easily adapted to work in other language environments. I use it in my VB projects unless there is a conflict or project management says don't use it. From the home page, click on Locator+ (the right most option on the menu bar). Type VBPJ0899 into the text box to specify what you want to down load. You first need to register for free on DevX. You will get a zip file of all the articles in this issue that is a collection of zip files for each article. You want "Getting Started" as listed in the Read.me file that shows up after the 1st UnZip. (Update 2000-07-22) I used a modified (I made it even simpler) version of the above described technique in the PowerBuilder project the I did for Premcor (see Professional Experience). It worked great!


(Written: 1999-12-07) The December 6, 1999 issue of BusinessWeek has an article titled "SOFTWARE HELL: IS THERE A WAY OUT?" This article catalogs the most publicly visible dramatic effect of poorly implemented Information Technology. It's greatest value is that hyperbole is sometimes the best way to illustrate a point.



(Written: 2000-07-22) IBM has announced its intention of porting all the software products that it now sells to run on Windows NT Server to also run on Linux. This means that you could purchase an IBM  Netfinity Server with Linux as the Operating System and DB2 Universal Database as the SQL Server engine. You can get the whole package from a single vendor like you used to be able to do from IBM. That means no finger pointing between vendors since it all came from one vendor. The cost will be less, by $3,000 or more depending on how many users you have, because you will not have to pay Microsoft per seat license to connect to the LAN Network Operating System. You will be able to support as many users as your hardware will handle without additional licensing fees. Maybe? There may be a per seat license fee for DB2. I am still researching that. Free technical support is available for 90 days after purchase. Also, the June 2000 issue of Network Computing features "Linux: Looming Large In the Enterprise." See the following URLs for more information. For the Linux article go to the networkcomputing URL. At the bottom of the home page there is a list of links by name. Pick "Article Index". On the next web page pick "The Features Index". On the next web page pick the article "The Linux Challenge June 26, 2000". The bottom of the 1st article web page shows that there are 9 web pages to this article with a link to the NEXT page. It is a comprehensive article.

http://www.pc.ibm.com/netfinity/linux/ http://www.networkcomputing.com/ http://www.microsoft.com/

The above does not mean that I am biased against Microsoft. I am not. It is a well known fact that Linux does not benefit from multiprocessor PC hardware and Windows NT and Windows 2000 Servers do. Assuming you buy good name brand hardware, hardware incompatibly with Windows is almost never an issue. With Linux it sometimes is an issue. Given the current low cost of hardware and the need for faster response time, a four (4) CPU Server with Windows NT Server or Windows 2000 Server and Microsoft SQL Server engine may be a better deal. If you are interested, I can do a comparative analysis on these two alternatives for you.

(Written: 2000-08-14) More information can be found about IBM's plans for Linux by going to URL http://www.computerworld.com Do an advanced search on the words "linux" and "mainframe". Both words must be in the title and use lower case characters. Make the date range July 1, 2000 to present. You will get at least 3 hits; more if more articles are written between now and the time you do your search. All articles found should be pertinant.