Entries from January 2008 ↓

Upcoming webinar on social software adoption

I’ll be doing a short webinar next week covering some of the high-level data we gathered in a survey on social software. The survey is the basis of a new report, The New Social Order, that looks at early adoption trends in social software, drivers for adoption and some early trends in vendor preferences.

The webinar will review:

  • Survey data on the state of adoption of social software
  • The types of initiatives for which organizations are using blogs, wikis, social networking, and social tagging and bookmarking tools
  • How adoption of social networking technologies in the enterprise is further blurring the line between consumer and corporate technologies
  • Vendor preferences of enterprise users for social software.

Webinar will take place on Wednesday the 6th of February from 12:00 to 12:30pm EDT.

Click here to register

Talking ’bout a generation…

Three cheers for this post from Alan Pelz-Sharpe over at CMS Watch entitled “Debunking the Google Generation Myth.” He cites a UK study that found little substantive difference between a “new generation” entering the workforce and the rest of us.

I’m awfully tired of hearing about how enterprises need to change their applications to suit this “new generation.” I’m not doubting that kids graduating from college today are more tech-savvy than, say, my mother (who gets around email and the web pretty well herself these days), but since when do large employers change corporate culture and process to make new employees, what, happier? More comfortable? And are kids graduating from college today in a position to be so choosy that the UIs of enterprise applications are a factor as they choose between jobs? Outside of the tech industry where individuals are paid to show initiative with technology projects, how many first-year employees have the nerve (or inclination) to start a skunkworks social software project if the corporate app they’re expected to use doesn’t work like Facebook?

I’m not saying that corporate cultures don’t change or that they won’t, slowly, evolve as technology and technology users change. This has always been the case and will continue to be so. But there are so many more interesting (and legitimate) reasons for organizations to look at social software than because a ‘new generation demands’ it. Getting important discussions out of email and into a forum where they can be more broadly shared and retained, enabling far-flung colleagues and partners to find and work with each other more easily, and doing a better job organizing and sharing the ever-increasing onslaught of information, are a few such reasons.

Text analysis in 2008

I was asked by someone recently what I thought would be a major trend in text analysis (or text analytics, but I prefer analysis) in 2008. We covered this ground in 451’s annual preview of storage and information management. That’s available to 451 customers only, but the sub-title of the section on search and text analysis was ‘The big vendors move in.’

That referred as much to to search as it did to text analysis, with the emergence of Oracle and SAP as players in the search market along with IBM. t mentioned Microsoft but at that time, it looked as if Redmond was content to continue developing its own stuff. But then it bought Fast Search & Transfer (FAST) and that changed things. And, I think, along with SAP’s ownership of Business Objects, and by extension text analysis player Inxight Software, it may mean 2008 is a year if not quite of stasis, then certainly of a slower pace of innovation.

FAST had a lot of interesting stuff in its labs, probably too much judging by the financial mess it got itself into mid-2007. But it will be distracted this year as it gets subsumed into Microsoft and it ties itself ever tightly to the Microsoft platform. And similarly for thew 3 to 4 months that Business Objects owned Inxight as an independent company we heard a fair amount about its plans to leverage iunstructured information. Now SAP owns it, we may hear a lot less.