Stories by Mark Broatch

E-tales: IT's speedy

The IT sector has been through tough times in the past year or so, but maybe not everyone. A Computerworld staffer, travelling to work in a chauffered Mercedes with all the other potential victims of some pneumonic plague or other, looked out his air-conditioned splendour to see a sleek black Mitsubishi 3000GT cruising past, its personalised numberplate reading "IT BOY". Or perhaps he's just the winner of some male model contest.

E-tales: How broad is broadband?

Don't tell New Zealand's Advertising Standards Authority, but its British counterpart has declared that any telco or ISP advertising internet access at less than 500kbit/s can't call its service "broadband".

Little trouble in big China? Take another look

Given the panic around SARS it would hardly be surprising if New Zealand firms reassessed their commitment to Asia, be it in the form of export or outsourcing development work. The lack of forthcoming information about the epidemic in some Chinese provinces was hardly encouraging.

Stats Watch: Surfing the CRM curve

You might be wondering what that nonsense was I wrote last week about satisfaction rates for CRM efforts at big companies being near to 75%. Well, put on your sceptic's hat and let's take a ride along the customer management highway.

Blogs butting into business

If you haven't noticed, weblogs are escaping the world of the opinionated scribbler in the wilderness and being taken up as a means to extend corporate intelligence gathering

Passing through the data doorway

Portals are a top-of-mind technology in education. At a conference on the subject in Auckland this month, representatives of several educational institutions joined the crowd of nearly 100.

Case study: ACC on the portal case

Prevention, care, recovery. ACC could apply its corporate mantra to the bottom-line savings and business process improvements the crown entity is making with the help of portal technology — recovering costs, preventing budget blow-outs, taking care not to roll out the online plan too fast.

E-Tales: Can opener

Finally, spam has a purpose. Here at IDG Communications we're testing a new spam filtering system. To refine the ratings given to emails to ensure all the real stuff reaches us and we ignore as much of the spam as possible, all the email we're getting at the moment is assigned a spam rating.

E-tales: Microsoft softens on open source?

News that Microsoft will speak at next week's Open Source for National and Local eGovernment Programs in the US and EU conference has of course created general uproar in the open source community.

Stats Watch: Size matters

In an earlier Stats Watch (Measuring I(C)T) and editorial (When good IT goes bad), I suggested we might be better creating a swag of $10 million companies rather than the 100 $100 million IT and telecomms organisations the ICT taskforce thinks we should aim for by 2012. Others went the opposite way and thought 10 billion-dollar companies would be better.