Do We Blame the Computers, or Us for Relying on Them?

After Katrina, everyone blamed everyone else. Now, despite record spending, the head of Homeland Security is blaming his computers. Michael Chertoff said one reason it took so long to respond to Katrina was poor electronic communications, overloaded Web servers and poor shipment tracking. It’s hard to say this is a total cop out. After all, how many multi-million dollar ERP and network management projects failed, and how many supply chains run backwards despite an investment that would support an entire American city? This stuff is just plain complicated.

But when it comes to critical issues, do we rely too much on MIPs and megabits? In a supply chain, one could pick up the phone and just say the pallets are delayed. And when it comes to Katrina, someone could make a call and mention there’s a problem. What do you think? Are we over-reliant on computers when we could just pick up a phone or walk to the next cubicle? Let me know at dbarney@redmondmag.com.

Borland, Take Two
I never thought I’d be writing about Borland twice in two weeks, but here we are. Last week we talked about Borland bailing on developer tools. This week the company is shipping a product aimed at fulfilling the company’s new application lifecycle management mission. The new IT Management and Governance system (not exactly a riveting name) combines training services and a new version of Borland’s Tempo system.

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An Active Role in Network Security
New revs of Active Directory are designed to improve security by making it easier for multiple directories to share identity information. This is a critical issue if companies are to work together, if vendors are to share with suppliers, and merged companies are to work as one. But perhaps more than anything, it makes Active Directory lord and master of all other directories!

About the Author

Doug Barney is editor in chief of Redmond magazine and the VP, editorial director of Redmond Media Group.

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