Stories by Michael Vizard

  • Fear and loathing of Web services

    If you listen very carefully, you can hear the sound of large application software vendors damning Web services with faint praise. Just about every software vendor has announced support for Web services on some level, but most of that support comes in two distinct flavours.

  • Freedom from vendor dependence

    Freedom is taken, not given. In the wake of the settlement between Microsoft and the Department of Justice, understanding this simple statement is more important than ever for IT organisations concerned about being too dependent on any one vendor.

  • Peering into the next wave of Internet apps

    XDegrees founder and CTO Dan Teodosiu talks about the next generation of Web services and the impact it will have on enterprise computing applications: "We're enabling completely new classes of network applications. If you look at the browser today, it's pretty much unidirectional. Your machine with a browser can be just a client for information. "

  • A SILICON PERSPECTIVE: The data dilemma

    Whether you call it data, information, or content, one thing is clear: We're drowning in it. Everywhere you look across the enterprise, pockets of information exist that are inaccessible to most people in the company. And yet many people could benefit from the knowledge those packets of data represent.

  • A SILICON PERSPECTIVE: Going to extremes

    When it comes to information technology, everything is about extremes. If you look back at the past three years, we have been living at one extreme end of the pendulum, which is now in the process of swinging back to the other extreme. Recent times have been marked by the appearance of hundreds of startup companies all selling the latest and greatest innovation to put your company light-years ahead of your competition. As a force for moving the industry forward, this process is a good thing. But like all good things, too much is less than healthy.

  • SILICON PERSPECTIVE: Build a community and they really will come

    For some inexplicable reason, people who build e-commerce sites on the Web tend to take leave of their senses when they first launch a new business venture. Whether it is a business-to-consumer site or a business-to-business site, the assumption is made that a transaction is somehow or other going to be immaculately born on their site thanks to some sort of divine intervention or over-funded marketing campaign.

  • GE expands PwC partnership

    General Electric's Global Exchange Services business unit on Monday announced a broad-ranging extension of its partnership with PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP, while simultaneously moving to open its proprietary service for business-to-business e-commerce applications to any third-party digital exchange.

  • Internet is backward:

    Returning to the venue where he launched his Microsoft career 21 years ago, company president and CEO Steve Ballmer last week told a gathering of industry executives that the Internet is 100 per cent backward from the way it will be 10 years from now.

  • Search for relevance

    To hear the folks at IBM tell the story, things have never been better for Lotus Notes. Following the release of Notes 5 earlier this year, revenue generated by this venerable platform is at an all-time high, and a recent reorganisation of Lotus and IBM means that Notes will be brought further into the corporate fold.

  • Leading a software evolution

    As the CEO of BMC Software, Max Watson is leading a revival of the use of systems and network management tools - a revival that is fuelled by increased demand for more sophisticated tools in the age of the Internet. BMC earlier this year acquired Boole & Babbage and is now recognised as a leading contender in this space. With more than $US1 billion in revenues, BMC now competes with IBM and Computer Associates (CAI). Watson talked with Michael Vizard about the changing nature of the systems and network management arena and the role BMC hopes to play in it.

  • At the digital crossroads

    Everybody talks about digital convergence, but very few companies actually deliver on that promise. After serving in top executive positions over the last decade at Lotus and Shiva, Woody Benson is now president and CEO of MCK Communications, which specialises in making equipment that extends the network functions of a PBX across an IP network

  • Trying to get Java right

    As a former systems engineer at Sun Microsystems, Daniel Berg had a front-row seat during the development of Java. Today he is the chief technology officer of Cyrus Intersoft, which plans to release a set of Java system services this month, called Speiros, that are designed to let any client be linked with any major server platform. In a conversation with Michael Vizard, Berg talked about what it will really take to fulfil the original vision of Java.