Random Thoughts Spawned by the Times 10/24/06

1. I met Jeff Skilling when I was at McKinsey. He struck me as incredibly smart, very focused, and very professional. I disagree with his 24-year sentence. It takes a very productive man out of society and accomplishes nothing but revenge for the victims of Enron’s demise. The Sarbox witchhunt into the boardroom continues and needs to be reexamined because the pendulum has swung too far.

2. Google introduces customizable/tailored search for web sites. I need to explore the capabilities, but think it poses a threat to the internal search providers such as Endeca. As the VP of MacWeek put it, Google already knows the site, so why not let them provide internal search? Google Search has been available to site administrators for years, but this permits the admin to tailor the results and exclude the noise.

3. IBM is suing Amazon for ecommerce patents. What really interests me is IBM has a patent for the display of online advertising. Must research to see what the scope of the claims are. Amazon deserves to get whacked for “One-Click” which the story indicates is in danger of being overturned due to being overly broad.

4. Laptops are subject to confiscation by US Customs. Time to encrypt my hard drive. Apparently any laptop crossing the border can be seized and analyzed. Kiddie porn, national defense? One more reason to back up your stuff and think twice about taking a laptop along for the ride.

Author: David Churbuck

Cape Codder with an itch to write

0 thoughts on “Random Thoughts Spawned by the Times 10/24/06”

  1. Re: Search

    Lack of customizability was the big problem forn Google site search before. I’ll be taking a closer look today…

    Re: Laptop confiscation

    Virtualization and/or thumb devices will become the answer.

    Scandisk is working on a thumb drive that will contain your personal profile and applications – plug it into any vista powered machine, and that’s your machine. http://variocreative.com/blog/?p=22

    Amazon’s leasing virtual servers by the minute – great if you are crunching real numbers, but it also implies that they could lease virtual desktops to business travelers over the net. Just plug in the URL and you’ve got your desktop. http://variocreative.com/blog/?p=12

    Then, with little fanfare, last week Google merged the google office tools into the Google mail suite. I now have email, calendar, doc processing, spreadsheets, analytics access, adwords access, adsense access, and chat all accessible via my google account.

  2. I agree with Mark about the thumbdrives. Not that I needed to do it (was more out of curiousity) but I recently got an entire Linux system to boot from a thumbdrive.


  3. Laptop confiscation:

    In response to Mark, I think this already exists in some form. You can go to Mojopac.com and see that they have a software app that allows you to store your data AND your apps on a removable drive. This can be either a thumb drive, or perhaps a portable (USB)large capacity drive. It sure seems that is where we are going as security everywhere is increasing. Soon we may only be able to access our data and apps in the virtual world.


  4. I have been meaning to check out the mojopac stuff. My buddy Jim Leonard here at Lenovo is also a big proponent of the solid state data storage world.

  5. David,

    Jeff Skilling may be all the things you say he is, but based on his conviction, he is also a criminal. I know (hope) you don’t mean this, but one could understand you to be saying that business executives who are smart and productive shoud be treated differently than other criminals. I suspect those who lost their entire savings to this scandle might feel differently.


  6. Nope.
    Criminal is criminal. 24 years strikes me as way out of whack with the crime, but it can be argued the enormity of the financial disaster justifies the sentence. Whatever. Skillings is the kind of person who could do great things for society and display remorse. If he was still in society.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.