Monday, June 28, 2010

The m-Power project exchange!

We have a new announcement that I’m sure our customers will love: The m-Power project exchange! It’s like an app store, but for m-Power. Basically, we’ve created an area for m-Power customers to share templates, user defined functions (UDFs), and external objects with other m-Power customers.

Have you created an m-Power template that others might find useful? Feel free to post it. You might find some interesting templates from others that you could use as well. If you don’t how to create a new template, we’ve posted instructions in there as well.

The goal of the project exchange is to give our customers a way to interact and share their creations with one another. We hope you find it useful!  And please stop back to tell us what good things you are doing with these project exchange creations.

Friday, June 25, 2010

8 ways to keep your best workers on board

The impending NBA free agent signing season has dominated the sporting news over the last month, at least in Chicago. Can the Cavaliers keep Lebron? Where will all the high-priced, high-talent players land? As a Bulls fan, I hope they all come to Chicago. (As a realist, I know they won’t.)

I think this situation is very similar to the business world. Every company has high-performing workers that they hope to retain. The difference between the NBA and business: In the business world your highly talented workers aren’t under contract. They can leave whenever they want. If they do leave, you stand to lose productivity and even money, depending on their responsibilities.

Top 10 programming languages to keep you employed

Have you checked out the TIOBE index? It ranks the most popular programming language on a monthly basis based on a number of different criteria.

I visit it every now and again, and the turnover rate is amazing. Popular languages one month may be out of the top 20 the next. For someone looking to keep their skills current and learn a new useful language, the choices are overwhelming. If you start learning a language now, will it still be popular in a year or so when you’re finally good at it? Maybe not.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Look at what a dumb marketing guy can do

*This post was written by Steve Hansen, mrc’s marketing director*

I just made a web application. It lists major league baseball batting statistics from 1970 to 2009, complete with a chart illustrating the rise in home runs over time. You can sort by all major offensive categories (with the arrows) and drill down within the application by year, division, and team by clicking on the little "+" icons. Additionally, you can filter the whole application by year or team by selecting any of options on the left and hitting "Run Report".  There's a lot of data, but it's very easy to navigate.

Friday, June 18, 2010

10 best business apps for Android, iPhone

As more and more Android phones are released and iPhones continue selling like hotcakes, we’re only going to see more of both in the business. For those contemplating a switch, but can’t decide between iPhone or Android for the business, I recommend this article.

For those who already use one or the other for business, you’ll no doubt find an overwhelming number of applications to choose from. If you’re looking for the best, here are two different articles listing the 10 best business apps for both Android and the iPhone.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

6 reasons why IT projects fail

A successful IT project is one that is delivered on time, at or under budget, and working as originally planned. According to the Standish group, only 32% of IT projects are considered successful. Believe it or not, that’s an improvement over years past.

Why are most IT projects unsuccessful? I found a nice article entitled "Why IT projects fail" which lists 6 of the most important reasons for failure. I couldn’t agree more with the first point: Lack of user involvement. If your project will be used at all by end users, they must be involved early on. After all, a new system or application that end users can’t (or don’t want to) use is a waste of money.

Monday, June 14, 2010

Pervasive BI - so what?

I’d like to introduce you to a relatively new concept: Pervasive business intelligence. It’s not some great new buzzword to throw around at meetings, it’s a truly actionable concept that could save time and money for your company.

The idea of pervasive BI is simple: Business intelligence should permeate throughout your business. Real-time data specific to your needs should be at your fingertips all the time. The value is obvious—Quick decisions, increased productivity, better efficiency, etc…

Friday, June 11, 2010

The hottest new group on LinkedIn

We just created a LinkedIn Group for m-Power. If you haven’t already signed up after reading the first sentence, I’d like to answer a couple questions you may possibly have.

Why should I join?
You can ask questions to other m-Power users, share interesting projects, get m-Power tips and advice, suggest enhancements, learn about new enhancements, tell a funny joke, etc… It’s pretty open-ended, and we’d love to have to you.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

5 reasons to celebrate mistakes at work

According to the late Peter Drucker, those who never make mistakes, never do anything interesting. Yet, how many companies look at mistakes in this manner?

I recently found that quote in an interesting article on entitled, "5 reasons to celebrate mistakes at work." The article challenges our perceptions of mistakes and suggests that without mistakes, there is no innovation.

Monday, June 07, 2010

The cost of inaction

One of my first cars was an old clunker. After a few years of driving, it needed repairs with increased frequency. I had a choice: Do nothing and continue maintaining my old car, or replace it with a newer car.

I chose the latter. While purchasing a newer car was more expensive up front, the year-to-year cost of maintenance substantially declined. Besides, the newer car also gave me better gas mileage and functionality, and reduced my chances of breaking down on the road.

Saturday, June 05, 2010

13 tech skills you need in your office

In the past, many companies looked at the IT department as a necessary evil. The IT department kept the computers working, but did little for the bottom line. That’s all changing now.

One of the best ways to save money these days is with new technology. Every day, new technology/software is created that helps companies run more efficiently and cut down on expenses. For example, this hospital just saved a bundle with iPads, which cost far less than other specialized touchscreen tablets already used by hospitals.

Friday, June 04, 2010

The IT hall of shame just put out an interesting list entitled, "The IT Hall of Shame". It lists 10 of the biggest frauds, flops, and foibles in the tech industry.

Most every entry on this list have one thing in common: They cost their respective companies a bunch of money. So, when you look through the list, ask yourself, “What can I learn from this?” What did they do wrong, and how can we avoid it?

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