Archive for May, 2012

When I was a kid, there was one morning in my house that held all the anticipation of Christmas but was on a school day. Once a year my parents would go to my brother’s yearly school fund raiser silent auction. They would return well past my bedtime and I would wake early in the morning in anticipation of what great item they had brought home for me or the family. Often it was a giant stuffed animal or a big box of chocolates, but there is one year that I will never forget. I woke to my mom telling me they had brought home a video player. I was so excited as this was the latest and greatest technology of the time and I couldn’t wait to have friends over to watch movies at home rather than the theater. This euphoria wore off rather quickly though when my mom showed me the big Sony Betamax box sitting in the kitchen. At this point it was already well known that Betamax had lost the consumer video wars to the open VHS platform and I was now sure to be the laughing stock of all my friends. I recovered from that day (eventually got a VHS), but the lesson of open platforms never left me.

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I just finished reading yet another article telling me that this is the year of MEAP (Mobile Enterprise Application Platforms) and how the enterprise and developers need to get onboard or be left behind. Now don’t get me wrong, MEAPs are a huge part of the mobility revolution and they are an important aspect of the current deployment of mobile apps within the enterprise. However, I’m really seeing a convergence of the mobility platform with the rest of the enterprise and I am seeing this within our own enterprise today. Every day I get to work with some of the smartest people in the room and they are actively looking for ways to not only join in on but also shape the future of the revolution.

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Danilo Rizzuti

The easier it is on the outside the more complex it is on the inside. We see this in every aspect of our lives today. I see this in my own cars. I have a 1986 Jeep CJ-7 that I open the hood of on a regular basis. The inside has a standard engine with a fan, wires and hoses. I can point to things, replace them and it works. However, when I sit behind the wheel, all I have is a steering wheel, a stick shift and a couple of gauges. The Jeep runs great, but it’s about as utilitarian as it gets. The flip side of this is my 2006 Nissan Quest minivan (yes minivan). When I open the hood of the van, I have no idea what is inside and can barely figure out where to put the oil (though I’ve never actually had to put oil in). As a prerequisite of purchasing and driving this car I insisted that every spot where there could be a button, or knob, must have that button or knob which provides me with a feature rich experience when I sit behind the wheel. Every want and need is taken care of save the driving itself.

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So I can’t help but wonder who is in charge of Digital Marketing at the University of Southern California that allowed this LinkedIn ad to go out without proofing. Doesn’t instill a lot of confidence in their Communication’s program if they can’t spell “Brochure” properly.

imagerymajestic – freedigitalphotos.net

So I know that most of my writing has been on the Mobile Enterprise, but this is one of those “other musings.” I was with friends this weekend and shown an email that one of their sons (Spencer) wrote in response to a forwarded WSJ article letting him know how lazy he and his Millennial generation is. It struck me, not just because the writing’s funny, but because it reminded me so much of how everyone talked about my generation (Gen X) back in the 90’s. We were all going to turn out to be nothing because we were lazy, didn’t follow the rules and just didn’t understand the way things were done. To that we said, guilty on the second two fronts, and we set out to change the rules and the way things were done and have never looked back. As this next generation starts to infiltrate the workplace, I can’t help but think things are about to change all over again. To see this all you have to do is look at what mobility and social media have done to change the entire landscape of our lives. With that said, I have reprinted Spencer’s email in its entirety. While the opinions expressed here are Spencer’s and not necessarily mine, I think that this has a bit of something for everyone and is just a glimpse of what’s to come from this next generation.

Begin Email:

This is a response to this article forwarded to me from *****. The initial email read “tough love but true.”  This is the second email like this I’ve gotten from them so felt the need to reply.

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Image: farconville / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

I saw a great quote this morning that got me thinking. It’s a famous one by Albert Einstein and it goes like this; “We can’t solve problems by using the same kind of thinking we used when we created them.” With each passing day the enterprise becomes more mobile and we are seeing a quantum shift in the way people communicate, interact and focus their productivity. But are we trying to solve the problems that come with mobility with the same thinking that brought about mobility?

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Image: FreeDigitalPhotos.net

We talk so much lately about the consumerization of IT and the BYOD trend which is blurring the lines between company and personal use of devices but are employees ready to take that to the next level by bringing their own computers to work? Over the years, I’ve known a number of developers who work with Mac based systems that would fight tooth and nail to get them allowed into our PC based world, but have always known that the majority of people I worked with had their company computer and then their personal computer and never the twain shall meet. It’s not that these people had nefarious data on their personal computers, it just that they were “personal.”

There are many who are looking to change this trend, with Microsoft leading the way. In his recent blog post, Managing “BYO” PCs in the enterprise (including WOA), Steven Sinofsky, President of the Windows and Windows Live division, said: “Our focus has been on how we can continue to deliver PCs and software that users need, like applications and data-access on any device, with enough IT control to assert that the device is trustworthy, while avoiding any compromise of the user’s privacy on their personal device.” The key here is that Microsoft is trying to offer the best of both worlds where employees can have their own personal computers, but connect them up to the networks in a fashion that is acceptable by IT organizations. However, even though this technology will be available, and it may even placate the IT side of things, the question remains as to whether or not this is something that employees will embrace.

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