Posted by Tom Foremski - November 17, 2015
There's a new business reality that few companies know about. If you want to be a player in global markets you will need a top-notch IT department. It won't be the same as the current one but whatever you do, don't buy the hype that you can just use off-the-shelf technologies and that the cloud makes IT departments obsolete.
Business edge will be defined by IT edge. IT matters and the performance of your IT department matters a lot.
The following is from my ZDNet column: IMHO:
The IT department will be transformed from a slow changing cost center and into a vibrant, creative organization essential to every business competing on a global scale.
More than ten years have passed since the publication of the book, "Does IT Matter? Information Technology and the Corrosion of Competitive Advantage" by Nicholas Carr, the former Executive Editor of the Harvard Business Review.
Few people disagreed with Carr's argument. In a world where every large company has the same IT systems, the same ERP apps, the same IT infrastructure, the same commodity hardware, no one has a strategic advantage.
Carr was right but that was then...
Posted by Tom Foremski - November 4, 2015
I was at SAP in Palo Alto earlier this week to see computer pioneer Alan Kay give a talk and also to meet with him for an exclusive interview.
I’ll have more on the interview coming up. I just uploaded the video of his talk here: Alan Kay @ SAP - YouTube
Alan Kay is a computer pioneer, he was part of the the Xerox PARC team of about 30 researchers who developed many of the key concepts of the PC and notebook. Here he talks about the lack of forward thinking in technology design and innovation.
He advocates designing products for how we expect to use technologies decades from now instead of trying to replicate old technologies.
He also talks about system thinking rather than discrete products such as apps and hardware, the goal is integration and collaboration among our technologies because that’s what’s important for humans: more collaboration.
He also mentions that Steve Jobs missed a lot when he visited Xerox PARC and replicated the graphical user interface and mouse — he didn’t see the computers were all connected, used Ethernet, and they connected to the nascent Internet then called ARPAnet. Steve Jobs missed half of it and didn't see that the computers were all networked "because he's a visual guy."
Posted by Tom Foremski - October 22, 2015
John Perry Barlow accepts Internet Archive Hero Award from Brewster Kahle.
The Internet Archive (IA), the San Francisco based non-profit digital media archive, this week announced several new programs in collaboration with major US libraries and a new annual award: Internet Archive Hero.
The programs include partnerships with top libraries and music archive organizations. Music is a key focus for the IA which unveiled a "music locker" approach to enlarging its store of music without triggering copyright suits. It allows music collectors to upload digital copies of their libraries to their music locker stored on the Internet Archive. It will signal if a title has already been digitized and uploaded by another but it will still be available in the music locker. This should increase the size of the music archive by eliminating duplicate work and focusing on titles not yet digitzed.
Posted by Tom Foremski - October 14, 2015
Weber Shandwick had a great turnout for its Future of Media event moving it to FAME on Broadway, a larger location in the heart of North Beach. And we had a rare all-woman panel after the lone male dropped out.
The moderator said it was a pleasure to be part of an all woman panel especially when the subject has nothing to do with women.
The moderator was Vivian Schiller Executive Editor-in-Residence at Weber Shandwick and the former Global Chair of News at Twitter, and a former CEO of NPR, did a good job including everyone in the conversation even if some panelists were way behind the times in their advice. For example: This is not a good time for journalists to strike out on their own, those days have come and long gone! Teams win.]
Posted by Tom Foremski - September 30, 2015
From left: Saleem Janmohamed, Accenture; Andy Grove, Ben Horowitz and Geoffrey Moore, M.C.
Andy Grove was a founder, CEO and Chairman of Intel during a long career that saw the Silicon Valley firm grow to become the world's largest chip maker.
Posted by Tom Foremski - September 28, 2015
The San Francisco office of PR firm Weber Shandwick is hosting an interesting panel on October 13 with top journalists and corporate media execs titled: Journalism Disrupted, Journalism Reborn: The Future of Media in a Digital World.
Weber scores marks for a female-dominated panel with four of the five panelists: Connie Guglielmo, Editor in Chief at CNET News; MC Wellons, SF Bureau Chief for CNBC; Ann Grimes, Professor at Stanford University and a former Wall Street Journal SF Bureau Chief; Caroline Fairchild, New Economy Editor at LinkedIn; and Joaquin Alvarado, CEO for The Center for Investigative Reporting.
Weber Shandwick has an active interest in the subject of journalism disrupted as do many PR firms because there’s plenty of new business opportunities. As the number of journalists continues to shrink, PR firms are offering businesses a wide range of editorial media services that includes: creating and publishing online magazines; writing articles, columns and features; creating video news reports; etc.
Also known as “content marketing” it’s an attempt to try to plug the gaps in media coverage of companies that journalists once provided. It’s become a huge market.
Weber Shandwick offers its media services through a business division called “Mediaco - We Help Every Company Become A Media Company”. [I worked with Mediaco last year on a client project.]
Posted by Tom Foremski - September 21, 2015
Jasper is positioning itself firmly in the Internet of Things (IoT) infrastructure sector where it already has a lot of customers for its technologies.
If you are interested in IoT and the "connected car" there is a panel and networking event coming up this Thursday September 24 at 6pm in San Francisco and you can request an invite here. Panelists include:
Posted by Tom Foremski - September 15, 2015
Adam Munder, a lithography process engineer at Intel, has been 100 percent deaf since he was 1 year old. He doesn't read lips, nor does he speak. His communication is primarily based on using American Sign Language (ASL) and using two interpreters, one who listens to conversations and converts the dialog into ASL and another who reads his responses in ASL and voices this to his audience.
Munder seldom uses technology to communicate, despite being immersed in an extremely technical environment within Intel. And these technical conversations about lithography, a process for etching geometric shapes on a silicon wafer, are what actually pose the biggest difficulty for him communicating.
Posted by Tom Foremski - September 10, 2015
PRWeek’s Lindsay Stein reports that Finn Partners has acquired Horn Group for an undisclosed sum to boost its tech practice.
After more than two decades in the business, Horn said she started thinking about selling, and Finn Partners was attractive because of its fresh thinking, independent stature, and culture. She noted that the deal will also expand its reach both in terms of geography and services. Horn’s security software clients may be interested in Finn Partners’ lobbying practice in Washington, DC, for example.
In 2014, Finn had 370 staffers worldwide and more than $52 million in global billings. Following the Horn acquisition, the agency will have about $70 million in annual fees and 500 employees.
Foremski’s Take: Sabrina Horn is one of San Francisco’s top PR industry mavens, (even though she has been spending most of her time in New York these past few years). I’ve worked with Horn Group’s San Francisco teams on many stories over the past 15 years.
Posted by Tom Foremski - September 2, 2015
Above, LinkedIn's Head Designer Amy Parnell interviewed by Adam Leventhal CTO of Delphix.
The recent Delphix Tech Talk series featured Amy Parnell, Director of User Experience at LinkedIn. Adam Leventhal, Delphix CTO interviewed Amy on several key topics that helped surface some of the best practices she has developed at LinkedIn over the five years she's worked there. She leads more than 60 designers.
Here's the link to the WebEx video recording of her excellent talk: Amy Parnell @Delphix Tech Talks
Some of the key points that stood out for me:
Posted by Tom Foremski - August 18, 2015
While wearables may be the latest rising trend, the concept of technology that can be worn on one’s body has actually been around for decades. Some of those original concepts even faced the same challenges that current devices currently are up against. A new exhibit, “On You: A Story of Wearable Computing” at the Computer History Museum in Mountain View, California, showcases how wearables have evolved and overcome many challenges during that time.
Posted by Tom Foremski - August 11, 2015
I'll be speaking Wednesday afternoon at PR Summit in San Francisco on the topic "Every company is a media company."
I coined that term nearly a decade ago. Now every company is exploring what it means to be a media company because it has to, it has no choice.
Ten years on, I'll now tell you what is next in this exciting, but badly misunderstood trend that is tearing up the media industry and reorganizing companies and industries.
Every company is a media company but media companies don't write about themselves all day long. Media companies provide a service, companies have to discover how to produce Media as a Service (MaaS) otherwise it is self-serving.
MaaS media is the best media. Find out more Wednesday afternoon at my Master Class session.
Posted by Tom Foremski - July 30, 2015
I recently received this well written pitch from Kaitlyn Garcia at VSC Consulting:
Print is dead. Magazines are dying.
Not so, thinks Creativ.
This magazine did something unique. They launched on mobile first, thanks to a large but relatively under the radar startup known as issuu, a platform that helps content creators build long form content vs. the short-form stuff we’re used to on apps like Flipboard.
Posted by Tom Foremski - July 29, 2015
We will all be using a new type of memory chip soon reports Intel Free Press, thanks to the fruits of a partnership between Intel and Micron.
After years of research by Intel and Micron Technology, the first new memory technology in 25 years has been announced. Called 3D XPoint it combines the best of DRAM and NAND (Flash) and promises to change computer designs.
"This has no predecessor and there was nothing to base it on," said Al Fazio, Intel senior fellow and director of Memory Technology Development. "It's new materials, new process architecture, new design, new testing. We're going into some existing applications, but it's really intended to completely evolve how it's used in computing."
Posted by Tom Foremski - July 28, 2015
It reported its slowest rate of growth with the number of monthly active users up by just 1% or about 2 million to 304m compared with Q1. The company has lost several senior executives this year including its CEO. Twitter's share price at $34 is well below its IPO debut of $45.10.
Foremski's Take: Twitter has become better at monetizing its large numbers of users but the lack of new user momentum, and endless leadership problems have left investors exasperated with the lack of progress.
Posted by Tom Foremski - July 23, 2015
The Financial Times (FT) newspaper business has been sold by Pearson to Nikkei, the Japanese media group for $1.32 billion. The deal values the FT at nearly three-times the market valuation of other publicly traded newspaper groups.
Industry sources report that Bloomberg, Thomson Reuters and Axel Springer had placed bids but late entrant Nikkei won it 15 minutes before the announcement from front-runner Axel Springer, which had been in negotiations for about a year.
The FT has about 737,000 mostly digital subscribers. Nikkei is Asia’s largest independent media business group. It publishes newspapers, magazines, books, database services and broadcasting. The Nikkei newspaper, its flagship publication has 3.12m subscribers.
Foremski’s Take: The sale of the Financial Times was expected as Pearson, its owner has been shedding non-educational assets, and also as its core educational business has slid further into trouble.
Posted by Tom Foremski - July 21, 2015
Above, modeling uncertainty in human-robot interaction at UC Berkeley.
The good news is that humans will still be needed in the factory of the future; the bad news is that humans will still be needed in the factory of the future. A report from Intel Free Press:
Contrary to what you may see at the movies, robots will not come to rule the world any time soon, experts say. Ken Goldberg, University of California, Berkeley professor of industrial engineering and operations research, and Otherlab CEO Saul Griffith, spoke at an event on factories of the future: “Bold Bets: Tomorrow’s Industrial Entrepreneurship.”
Posted by Tom Foremski - July 13, 2015
Delphix HQ in Menlo Park.
Delphix, (my employer) is building some excellent momentum with the announcement of $75m in funding led by Fidelity Management and Research, with new investors Credit Suisse and The Kraft Group. This follows recent recognition in two top IT awards from Computer Weekly and Computing (I used to work for Computing).
Posted by Tom Foremski - July 9, 2015
I came across a great interview by Danny Palmer at Computing, with Mike Lear the CIO of City Index, which provides spread betting services to tens of thousands of financial markets traders.
Faster delivery of apps is key in the competitive market for financial data that City Index provides but so is data accuracy. Testing is extremely important especially since customers can complain to government regulators.
Posted by Tom Foremski - July 6, 2015
The National Venture Capital Association reported that the number of initial public offerings (IPOs) for VC-backed companies rose 59% in the second quarter of 2015 compared with the first quarter of this year.
There were 19 biotech and other life sciences IPOs and eight in the IT sector for a total of 27 IPOs raising $3.4 billion. Fitbit was the largest IPO raising $841.2 million.
Posted by Tom Foremski - July 6, 2015
The world's largest chipmaker sees massive opportunities in IoT. Intel Free Press interviews Rose Schooler, head of Intel's Internet of Things Group.
With the chance to connect “sensors to the cloud in every industry on the planet,” Rose Schooler, vice president of the Internet of Things Group at Intel, says the Internet of Things (IoT) opportunity is massive.
But interoperability, along with provisioning and managing these devices, are critical factors for success.
Her organization is responsible for delivering platforms for the networking and storage market segments as well as providing solutions for telecommunications service providers.
With so many emerging technologies and opportunities in IoT, how will everything be able to talk to each other?
Posted by Tom Foremski - June 24, 2015
Circa CEO Matt Galligan in 2013 in the San Francisco office
Jason Abbruzzese reports: News app Circa says it cannot survive as a viable business
News app Circa, once a media darling for its mobile-first approach, has announced that it is going on an "indefinite hiatus" after it was unable to find someone to buy the company.
In a Medium post entitled "Farewell to Circa News," CEO Matt Galligan admitted that while they had succeeded in their goals of making a high-quality mobile news platform, Circa had failed to become a viable business.
Posted by Tom Foremski - June 23, 2015
Delphix received a big boost today recognition from Gartner, which placed Delphix in the top Leader's quadrant in its latest Magic Quadrant for Structured Data Archiving and Application Retirement. It's key in cloud migration projects, a complex and risky move made far simpler with Delphix and it's great to get the recognition from Gartner.
Posted by Tom Foremski - June 23, 2015
Corporations spend a lot of money on IT and some of that money is spent on new products from innovative IT startups.
But it's a hard slog for those startups when they have something truly innovative to sell because who do they sell it to when there is no category for what they have? Who holds the budget for something that didn't exist until a year or two ago?
There's budgets for databases, servers, for networks, and hundreds of other IT components. But where are the budgets for as-yet unknown technologies that could be transformative across the entire business?
Posted by Tom Foremski - June 23, 2015
Technology moves fast and today's tech products become outdated faster than the seasons change and are thrown out. Hoarders (such as Freda Clark, above) are unconscious archivists of our digital age and are now sitting on some iconic treasures. Here's a report from Intel Free Press...
Hoarders who are finally clearing out their stashes are finding that some of their trash is actually treasure
Forgotten items sitting in the dark corner of garages or hidden away in attics are often just old clothes and household items. But on the rare occasion, there could something worth tens, or even hundreds of thousands of dollars.
Posted by Tom Foremski - June 10, 2015
The chip industry is governed by 'Moore's Law" and it has been an incredible innovation platform delivering ever cheaper digital devices. Intel Free Press takes a look at the original article in the original magazine...
Amid all the fanfare around the 50th anniversary of Moore's Law this year, there will be multiple references and notations from a brief article written by Intel co-founder Gordon Moore in the April 19, 1965 edition of Electronics magazine, which ceased publishing 20 years ago.
It was the early days of the integrated circuit, and Intel was not even born yet when Moore, who was still at Fairchild Semiconductor at the time, was asked to contribute an article for the 35th anniversary of the magazine. In it, Moore pointed out that the number of transistors per square inch on integrated circuits had doubled every year since their invention. But, more importantly, he predicted that the trend would continue into the foreseeable future.
Posted by Tom Foremski - June 10, 2015
I'm looking forward to speaking tonight at a Lifograph event in San Francisco, to executives at startups on the topic of "free" communications. It's "free" in that startups get to do it themselves because they can't afford a PR firm on retainer.
Posted by Tom Foremski - June 4, 2015
I attended a very worthwhile roundtable this week, organized by Actian, a Big Data business analytics company. It was a very good mix of analysts, investors, media and users.
Posted by Tom Foremski - June 4, 2015
It's a pleasure to be working at Delphix with such a world-class engineering team. Our CTO is Adam Leventhal, one of the authors of DTrace, a truly revolutionary application. It allows engineers to monitor the performance and troubleshoot very complex IT systems.
It is like having X-ray vision into the heart of the data center. To put it bluntly, DTrace is one of the key technologies that enables the modern digital world that we take for granted.
Posted by Tom Foremski - June 1, 2015
I'll be at the Startup Voodoo conference in St. Louis on June 18. Here is an interview by conference co-founder Aaron Perlut, with one of the keynote speakers: Maxine Clark, who pioneered crowd-sourcing in 1997 to build a very successful business.
By Aaron Perlut
Veteran retail entrepreneur Maxine Clark is one of our keynote speakers at the 2nd annual Startup Voodoo innovation, entrepreneurship and startups conference in St. Louis June 18.
Not familiar with her name? Well, you should be. Because while crowdsourcing is today all the rage as a means of corporate engagement with customers, Clark’s Build-A-Bear Workshop – with more than 400 locations worldwide — has been at the forefront of the concept since 1997.
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Tom Foremski is a Founding Fellow of the Society for New Communications Research - a Silicon Valley based think tank focused on developments in media and PR.
The Holmes Report names Tom Foremski one of the top 25 Innovators of 2013.
SF Publicity Club's ninth annual awards
celebrating excellence in media.