For a Season Such As This…

I’ve decided to stop writing on this blog for a season, maybe forever. I don’t think I want to write much more about IT in general, but I want to keep writing. I’ve started a new blog at http://sugarhill.blog where I’ll start some new things. I might lift some pieces from this blog that are relevant to the new one, but I think a fresh start is warranted.

Stop by http://sugarhill.blog when you get the chance.

Technology Moving Forward

Two interesting articles on Medium which I wanted to highlight.

One is a 270 Terraflop computing platform that you can run at home. Seems like a lot of computing power for the ‘home’ but amazing that such is available and can be applied to some computational ideas.

Another article is about seven technologies to watch in the next year. Yes, most of these are boring lists of things we’ve already heard about but was a good list so I thought I’d highlight it.  I’ve written about self-driving cars before and they seem to be on our doorstep. I’m anxious to get one myself.

And here is a great little article on blockchain and why it is meaningful and interesting.

I’m currently reading Principles: Life and Work by Dalio which I’m loving. At work a few years ago I did some work with the team on establishing principles to govern our decisions in IT. I’ll write more about that soon and this book once I’m done.

Best wishes to you in the new year. And to those of my friends dealing with disruption and change, press on. Sometimes change is a really good thing when you leave the bad to find the better.

 

IT and Boards

An article in the WSJ suggests that boards are getting more interested in cybersecurity. Actually the line just below probably says it all:

Facing threat of regulation

I doubt most boards are remotely able to carry on a meaningful conversation in this area. They don’t know what questions to ask and in general, they aren’t really interested. Likely, the reports they receive are just done to show that they’ve reviewed the matter.

Cybersecurity is hard.

Been Gone for a While

There is just so much going on.

Corporate stupidity on a huge scale is rampant where decisions are being made for the short-term that do not reflect the realities of the long-term.

Where leaders are ignoring the facts and instead focusing on their narrative or their story or their view of how things ‘ought to be’ instead of reality.

Where people are clinging to their positions despite facts and realities that do not align with their viewpoints or positions.

Look, we need to listen and think about the ideas we are hearing the positions that people are taking.

Corporate directors or trustees need to think and not just listen to the narrative of the ‘trusted’ executives.

All of us need to think more about the good of all instead of the good of us individually.

Trust but verify.

Equifax

Much is being written about the Equifax data hack. You can read about it here or here or here if you’ve not yet read much about it.

I saw a post on Twitter the other day that cracked me up.

Screen Shot 2017-09-11 at 10.34.40 AM.png

One report in the NY Times suggested that Equifax doesn’t even know who is impacted.

Here is the deal, Equifax’s business is to gather this information and sell it to 3rd parties. When you need a loan or want a new credit card, the company extending credit to you goes to this company, or ones like it, to check on your credit. They gather this information from lots of different places and you have no options to tell them to stop doing this. They are creating this database of information about you and you have no control on how they protect this most sensitive information.

We are the ones impacted by their lack of security. We are the ones further impacted by the huge delay in telling us. What was stolen is about us and it impacts us. Equifax might take a stock hit, but not much more.

 

This company needs to be put out of business. The class action law suit should put them out of business. There should even be clawbacks on executive compensation and stock options.  

A year of credit monitoring is not even meaningful punishment for this poor stewardship and lack of property security protection.

Company and organization leadership teams need to take the protection of confidential information seriously.  There need to be examples, like here, where the company is put out of business because of their lack of proper attention and focus. Probably the CIO will be fired, but really, the board and the senior leadership team should be fired.

 

Supply Chain Fails

A year and a half ago I ordered a number of actual, physical paperback books to give to some friends at an event where I was speaking. The book was one I wanted to hand out related to the topic of our discussion and my time with them. A certain big book company began shipping these books in separate shipments from around their universe. However, the books kept coming and went way over the amount I ordered. I kept getting new shipment notices in email when I had already received the ones I had ordered.

This particular company is a big web based company and it is hard to actually talk to someone there. I sent emails and finally got a hold of a person and explained the problem. The first person couldn’t understand and didn’t fix the problem. I called again and got another person who did see the problem and managed to cancel what was happening. I offered to ship books back, but they said keep them and give them away.

Seven months ago I ordered some socks from another online business and got double the shipment.  Two weeks ago I ordered some running apparel and instead of three items, I got six. In both these cases, I offered to return the over shipment and they told me to just keep them.

A big company which ships a lot of books and two smaller, niche companies who are probably closer to the edge getting their order management and shipping wrong.

I don’t know if this is IT or order management or their online revenue engine, but in any case, companies big and small must get this right. You can’t stay in business long if you are getting so many shipments wrong.

I should have ordered iPads.

 

Autonomous Trucking

When I wrote earlier about autonomous vehicles and mentioned trucking and truckers I hadn’t even considered the idea that someone could move faster if they didn’t try to solve the problem of the ‘last mile’ and instead just focused on autonomous driving of trucks on the highways and interstates. Have the vehicle drive itself 95% of the way there, but then have a ‘real driver’ meet the truck for the last leg of the delivery. Use real drivers out and into cities and complicated areas.

Brillant.

See a write up about it here.

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