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The Unhappy Valley: customized COTS between “buy” and “build”

August 13, 2013 1 Comment
The Unhappy Valley: customized COTS between “buy” and “build”

In response to my post yesterday on buy vs. build, Geoff asked a very important question: I’d be interested to get your opinion on the degree of customisation that COTS packages can realistically handle. I’ve seen several systems that started out as customised COTS, but eventually departed so far from the vanilla functionality that we […]

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Buying vs. building software applications: the eternal dilemma

August 12, 2013 3 Comments
Buying vs. building software applications: the eternal dilemma

Some years back, an IT colleague of mine mentioned a conflict at a corporation where he was working at the time. The corporation had a mission-critical application deployed across a large number of workstations. The corporate employees who used this application largely used it and nothing else all day long at dedicated workstations. The application […]

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Controlling IT Costs: Using a Maintenance Architect

July 22, 2013 0 Comments
Controlling IT Costs: Using a Maintenance Architect

Software rots over time. Of course, it doesn’t literally decompose, but it often becomes fragile, harder to support and more likely to break when something else in the enterprise’s IT environment changes—another application, the hosting platform and operating system, a third-party product with which it communicates, a database schema. When a defect is fixed, or […]

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Technical bleg: curious iPad wifi problem

April 4, 2013 4 Comments
Technical bleg: curious iPad wifi problem

I bought my first iPad (original model) about six months after they came out, and replaced it with an iPad 2 about four months after they came out. So I’ve been using an iPad for about 2 1/2 years. For most of that period, my typical iPad usage has included checking e-mail and blogs first […]

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Technical bleg: simple video chat over a LAN (Mac/Win mix)?

March 15, 2012 3 Comments
Technical bleg: simple video chat over a LAN (Mac/Win mix)?

My systems are all Windows 7 Pro 64-bit. One of my desktops has a Logitech webcam on it. My wife’s systems are all Mac OS X. Her MacPro tower has a webcam on it. We’re on the same LAN, but we’re two floors apart. Is there a simple way to set up video chat within […]

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