The KIT ─ Knowledge & Information Technology
Issue No. 68 - 15 March 2012
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In This Issue
Cutter Summit
The CIA Isn't Buying Anymore
Exabytes on the Go
Crowdsourcing Travel Reviews
Five Free Online Stanford Computer Science Courses
Seen Recently
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Last Reminder: Cutter Summit in Boston

"Summit 2012: Executive Education+" takes place on April 2-4 in Cambridge, Mass. It includes keynotes, panels, roundtables, and workshops. Claude Baudoin will lead a breakfast roundtable on social media in the enterprise, and will give a talk about communities of architects.

The Case for Renting Software
The CIA may not be a typical software customer, but their recent stance in favor of a software rental model instead of purchasing a permanent license may inspire followers. In their case, the rationale is that they often need to change the "big data" software they use in order to interpret exponentially growing amounts of data.

The recent trend in the enterprise world is to move from on-premise software to cloud-based software (Software as a Service, or SaaS). The CIA model is a hybrid one: run the software on premise, but rent it in order to only pay for it while it is the best for the job, then be free to switch without having to write off a large investment.

(Seen in March issue of Vince Polley's MIRLN newsletter)
Exabytes on the Go
The worldwide rate of mobile data traffic is currently about one exabyte (1018 bytes) per month, and is forecast to grow by another factor of 10 by 2016, according to a U.S. government study that led to an auction of new wireless telecommunication spectrum. That's a lot of movies and video games being watched and played by people on the go. Whether they should rather watch where they're going is an open question the study does not address...
Case Study of Social Media in Business
The MIT Sloan School's Center for Information Systems Research (CISR), famous for the book by Profs. Jeanne Ross and Peter Weill, "Enterprise Architecture as Strategy," just published a short report by Prof. Wanda Orlikowski and Susan Scott, "How Social Media Can Disrupt Your Industry: a Case Study in the Travel Sector." The authors shows how a Web site like TripAdvisor has, for better or for worse, changed the way hotels are rated, and they recommend some steps for a business to understand and leverage the crowdsourcing of user opinions.
Free Online C.S. Courses from Stanford
This month, following a successful experiment a few months ago, Stanford University introduces five free online non-credit computer science courses:
  • Design and Analysis of Algorithms (a class that used to be taught by legendary Prof. Don Knuth in the 1970s)
  • Natural Language Processing
  • Cryptography
  • Game Theory
  • Probabilistic Graphical Models

335,000 people had already registered by the courses by early March. This article explains aspects of the offering, and mentions other  online programs by Stanford, such as lectures on iTunes. 

Seen Recently...

"Any process over 12 months old has idiocy built in."

-- John Dixon, at Gartner's UK BPM Summit on March 14,

via Gavin Beckett, Bristol City Council Chief Enterprise Architect