Stories by Mark Broatch

Which are you?

It’s one of those perennial and peripheral questions of ICT: which abbreviations do you treat as acronyms in the strict sense, trying to pronounce them as a word, and which do you spell out?

Mapping the future

Business 2010: Mapping the new commercial landscape by Ian Pearson and Michael Lyons (Spiro, $49.95)

In the sights

SCO's Darl McBride has incurred an awful lot of wrath for his company's claim -- and accompanying lawsuit against IBM -- that it owns some of the underlying code to Linux.

Patent watch

Schick appears to have won the first round in its shaver patent battle with Gillette. A judge in Boston has cut off Gillette's attempt to get a preliminary injunction against Schick for introducing a four-blade razor.

Tee time

Rob Menegon is not exactly a mad fan of golf, and he doesn’t have a handicap. But he’s knows the game well and understands exactly what sort of statistics fans and journalists want out of the game.

Going forward

Every year the people who produce this publication 48 times a year have a summit of sorts. It's not quite Jimmy Carter and Leonid Brezhnev pounding out Salt II, but it helps us figure out where we, and this publication, are going

Tooth and nail

SolNet boss Mark Botherway clearly has a high pain threshold. In the midst of restructuring the company on account of the loss of the Sun New Zealand agency, he went off to the dentist to have his wisdom teeth out. To the suggestion that he was a sucker for punishment, Botherway told us it was an appointment he’d made some time earlier.

And the IT staff come Russian in

You think you’ve got it tough in IT. You haven’t seen tough. A deadline for a CIO in Russia means just that: go over that line and you’re dead.

Saving digital trees

That old insult so often slung at editors -– “your newspaper isn’t worth the paper it’s printed on” -– has been modified for the cyber age, as we discovered during recent correspondence. A story about the open source GPL (general public licence, we know that much) published online prompted a reader to pronounce: “I believe this is a poorly researched article which isn't worth the space it occupies on the server.” We’d just like to point out that trees might be an increasingly scarce resource but the cost of disk storage is falling all the time.

Fun and games

One of our major bank's staff appears to be having just a little too much fun in their lunch hour. Not content with simply appointing "fun facilitators" to get the blood pumping in the IT department, rules and regulations have had to be extended to cover all manner of jocularity. Viz:

Sway this way

Spotted at Big Boys’ Toys in Auckland a week or so ago –- two Segway Human Transporters (one pictured left), carting a couple of demo drivers back and forth across a patch of carpet. Their importer and owner is hiring them out for business promotions and corporate or private functions. While they're not available to buy in New Zealand –- and at about $8000 a pop we can’t see a long line forming -– he’ll help arrange their importation. The Segways’ swaying, back and forth motion at the show attracted plenty of bemused onlookers.

Crib snatcher

If you were wondering where former IDC-er Mark Cribbens has ended up, the truth can now be revealed: he's running UK cable TV company BSkyB. Forget all that nonsense about it being Rupert Murdoch's son.