Archive for April, 2003
ManagementSpeak: We’ll address further enhancements in future phases of the project. Translation: We were too cheap to buy the right solution at the get-go, so we’ll have to retrofit all the stuff you really wanted later on… much later on… Thanks to KJR club member Meg Keehan for this further enhancement to our vocabulary.
160 years ago we were a nation of farms and small merchants, in which both people and information traveled no faster than when Julius Caesar overthrew the Roman republic. A mere 45 years later, the trip from the east coast to California, formerly a half-year ordeal, was a routine two week journey; information traveled coast-to-coast […]
“For every complex problem there is an answer that is clear, simple, and wrong.” – H. L. Mencken
Miller Lite had a perfect mission statement: “Tastes great. Less filling.” Not that mission statements are all that important. They aren’t. Understanding the mission is important. Having a great mission statement is only important to the extent it helps you persuade others to commit to it. Most mission statements have the opposite effect: They put […]
“I don’t know half of you half as well as I should like; and I like less than half of you half as well as you deserve.” – Bilbo Baggins, on the occasion of his eleventy-first birthday, in J. R. R. Tolkein’s Lord of the Rings.
When I started this column, I hoped to complete a full year without running out of topics. Fifty columns would be a respectable accomplishment. More than six years and 300 columns later, it appears I’ve run out of space before running out of strongly held opinions. InfoWorld is changing direction. This column isn’t part of […]
ManagementSpeak: What a novel concept. We should review this at corporate. Translation #1: I don’t have a clue what you are talking about. Translation #2: Maybe someone at corporate will understand this. Translation #3: Someone at corporate? IS Survivalist Bill Oxley introduces the new, improved, multi-level ManagementSpeak!
A paradox of our industry is that while the IT community includes a disproportionate number of libertarian thinkers, most turn into communists during work hours. Yes, I’m talking to you, you communist liberal socialist propeller-head! I offended you. Let me take back the most offensive epithet. You aren’t really a liberal. Is that better? What […]
ManagementSpeak: We are not having any layoffs. Translation: The layoffs won’t be announced until next week. IS Survivalist Bill Adams announces the proper translation this week.
Premise 1:Businesses aren’t moral agents. This isn’t up for debate. The Business Roundtable, the official voice of American industry, made this clear in 1997: Businesses exist solely to maximize shareholder value. Fiduciary responsibilities? Yes. Legal obligations? Sure. But moral? Since most business success comes at the expense of competitors, they can’t be. Premise 2: Businesses […]