Industry Focus

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Changing the nature of work: An interview with Jovoto’s Peter Ryder

Since the Industrial Revolution, people have come to have a fixed idea about what a “job” is, but in fact the definition has changed over the centuries. Hundreds of years ago, “job” may have meant becoming an apprentice and then plying a trade, or engaging in farming, or simply signing onto a crew whenever an opportunity arose. The idea of a “job” as selling your daytime hours to a large company, and sitting in a cube alongside hundreds of others, is a relatively new idea, and not a very good one. “Job” should instead, be part of one’s life, evolving…

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Critical Infrastructure: Securing the Power Grid

Although it didn’t quite fit the FBI’s criteria for terrorism, a mysterious nighttime attack on an important Northern California substation two years ago was a wakeup call for the electric power industry. Someone using wire cutters and a rifle caused $15 million in damage and forced the substation out of service for nearly a month. Since this happened in the middle of the night when power demand was low, no homes or businesses were blacked out, but the chairman of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission at the time characterized it as “the most significant incident” involving the power grid that…


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Can Modern Jetliners Be Hacked?

Is it possible for hackers to break into the control systems of airliners in flight? Aviation experts are skeptical, but APTN reports that one hacker claims to have done that. If there is any truth to the story, it raises significant implications even beyond the memories of what occurred on 9/11. A U.S. federal court document posted by APTN indicates that the FBI has seized computer equipment owned by outspoken hacker Chris Roberts, and filed for a search warrant to examine the devices. Is Roberts seeking publicity?  No doubt. How vulnerable are the flight systems on commercial airliners? APTN says…


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Why modern manufacturing still runs like a ’57 jalopy

Management accounting isn’t the sexiest field of study in the world, and probably most accountants don’t ride Harley Davidson motorcycles, they don’t go skydiving and they don’t like to do things differently. But a revolution is brewing in the world of management accounting that is making businesses take a fresh look at how they figure out how much money they’re making. The surprising fact is that they’ve been doing it wrong all these years. Typically, accounting principles measure profitability at a very detailed “margin per unit” level. And while correct, it’s not completely correct and surprisingly, it doesn’t take into…


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NEW Enterworks CEO Appointed

Rick Chavie has been hired as CEO of Enterworks, a developer of solutions for acquiring, managing and transforming a company’s product information into persuasive content for multi-channel sales. Rick Chavie comes to Enterworks after serving as SVP, Global Solution Management with hybris and SAP’s Customer Engagement and Commerce group, where he brought together digital and physical commerce and CRM assets for seamless customer experiences. Chavie brings industry experience from his leadership roles at retailers such as The Home Depot and C&A. He brings technology experience from his role as the global marketing leader for NCR’s retail and hospitality business, and…


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Money: Before Bitcoins, There Were Yap Stones

Money is among humanity’s greatest inventions. While money may be a physical object, it is an idea, a great subtle and still changing idea. No one today knows the inventor or inventors. As the idea has changed over centuries it must have had many inventors. When my physicist colleagues study an idea or theory, chewing on it until it is digestible, they pronounce it simple. Indeed, it is remarkable that when complex, subtle, deep, and broad ideas enter our minds and we feel that we really grasp them, they often appear simple and beautiful. Physicists refer to Einstein’s Theory of…