Digital Transformation: Part 2

Once, as Operations Manager I was training a new graduate joiner on a routine task. As I was doing so, I said: “Oh, I can have this automated”. The third time I said this the newbie retorted “you’ll have me automated out of a job!”  A month later this graduate came to me about another […]

Satellites in Intelligent Transport

Most people are familiar with maps on their smart-phone, with their location displayed, either with pin-point accuracy or at least good enough.  I’ll not normally give any thought to perhaps eight satellites providing signals that are interpreted and combined to provide not only latitude and longitude, but also height relative to a calculated earth’s surface.  […]

Politics or Money Killed the Better Idea

In the 1960s the Beeching cuts decimated the railways in Great Britain.  The intent was that by closing 55% of stations and 30% miles of track, the then nationalised British Railways would be profitable.  Passenger travel and freight were diverted to cars and lorries.  Some investment in rail did follow, with 125 mph trains between […]

Machine Learning & Expert Systems: they’re not necessarily the same thing

In 1973 I considered ‘Artificial Intelligence’ as a postgraduate research degree: as it worked out, I stayed with Organic Chemistry.  In the intervening decades it seemed to me that not much happened with artificial intelligence, except hype and hijacking “AI” to perhaps mean Augmented Intelligence, Advanced Innovation or similar. Genuine AI advances were happening, but […]

Supply Chain Hacks

There are four basic ways that malicious code can be introduced: Programmer or Administrator with legitimate access Payload delivered by a user action Direct attack on the hosting server through a security weakness A “Supply Chain” attack on a company providing software or ‘library’ code to other companies.   1: About twenty years ago when […]

Efficient Promotion of a LinkedIn Article

How hard can it be?  Write 500 words, drop it into LinkedIn.  Job done: Bob’s your Uncle, Fanny’s your Aunt?  No, not job done: if you’re lucky, very lucky, as much as a handful of friends and one stranger will view it. Presumably you’ve written the article because it has some importance to you?  You […]

The “A” in RACI

RACI is an abbreviation for the roles “Responsible, Accountable, Consulted, Informed”, a concept used in project management.  In a project, or sub-project, there must be somebody accountable, and there can be only one accountable person.  There may be one or more people delegated as responsible for parts of the project, but the accountable person has […]

Staying on the Customer’s Radar

Customers and prospects are fallible people: they have a big project that is just right for you, they’re already doing business with you, but for some reason you’re not included in the RFP (Request for Proposal).  One answer to this conundrum is to find a good reason for being on the customer’s radar every three […]

Do ISO 10002 & Balanced Scorecards Work?

About twelve years ago I started running the service desk at a small multi-national SaaS company.  From being its sole operator, I gradually built a team of five other members who were spread around the globe to cover different time zones. The company’s management were focused on new Key Performance Indicators (KPI) and Service Level […]

Asset Management

Knowing about physical assets is important to many organisations as a theft preventative measure, and financial auditors need to verify that assets in the company's accounts exist. IT asset configuration management is different. The Infrastructure Manager should ensure that apart from their identities (names) these servers, their firewalls and load balancers are set up the […]

Knowledge Management

Knowledge falls into two main types: explicit knowledge that can be written down, and tacit knowledge that can only be learnt from tens of thousands of hours of experience. Relaying explicit knowledge, passing it from person to person, from generation to generation, is not unique to humans, but in such abundance is a crucial difference. […]

Change Management

Adopting change management best practices reduces the risks in any business transition. The first time, the second time, the last time, and the next time. The risks may be technical or reputational, but always financial. This applies not just in the IT area, but also elsewhere in the enterprise. The main resistance to implementing change […]