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Top Stories by Hollis Tibbetts

A completely new computing platform is on the horizon. They're called Microservers by some, ARM Servers by others, and sometimes even ARM-based Servers. No matter what you call them, Microservers will have a huge impact on the data center and on server computing in general. What Is a Microserver...and What Isn't Although few people are familiar with Microservers today, their impact will be felt very soon. This is a new category of computing platform that is available today and is predicted to have triple-digit growth rates for some years to come - growing to over 20% of the server market by 2016 according to Oppenheimer ("Cloudy With A Chance of ARM" Oppenheimer Equity Research Industry Report). According to Chris Piedmonte, CEO of Suvola Corporation - a software and services company focused on creating preconfigured and scalable Microserver appliances for deployin... (more)

The Power of Technology (and People) in Customer Service

Just a few days ago, I was the "victim" of a bad customer experience courtesy of some powerful technology that was badly used. I wrote about the situation in full detail in "Are Your Online Support Tools Ruining Your Business?" Good Technology Enabling my Terrible Service Experience Here's a quick re-cap: I bought a semi-expensive electronic gadget - a $400 radar detector.  When it arrived, it wasn't working properly.  I went to the manufacturer's website for an answer and found none.  I clicked on the "Chat" button to speak with a support person, and was told that the support ce... (more)

Software Quality Best Practices: Healthy Software

Consider the following scenario-typical in many application development organizations. A major new release of an application has just gone into production. Although the development and QA teams endured many late nights of coding and testing, and consumed large quantities of delivered pizza, the project missed its ship date. Still, customers are happy with the product and are giving positive feedback. By many definitions, the team has produced a quality product. Then, a new, large business opportunity requires the rapid implementation of a significant new feature in the product. ... (more)

Why Product Positioning Is Useless

Yes.  Product Positioning is mostly useless.  A waste of time.  Simply because it’s so very rarely done well at all. Surprisingly, few people understand the basic concept of product postioning.  They don’t realize that proper product positioning is the foundation of marketing.  They tend to believe that product positioning is a trivial marketing fluff exercise that belongs in some PowerPoint presentation  – which will never be taken seriously by anyone (if seen by anyone at all). Done correctly, product positioning is the most important thing a marketing person can do.  The do... (more)

Software Best Practices: Use Cases Are for Everyone

What Are Use Cases and Who Uses Them? Use Cases are NOT just for requirements gathering by project managers. They're far too useful to be relegated to that niche. For those not familiar with use cases, you can look up various confusing definitions which make reference to UML diagrams and such - but generally speaking in the world of software design, they describe how a person interacts with a piece of software. For example, a use case for Amazon.com might describe how a user searches for a book title.  Ultimately, use cases when collected together describe how software is used, wh... (more)