Technology Blog Round Up

By Donald Sears  |  Posted Wednesday, November 19, 2008 04:11 AM

Here are my 5 best picks for the best posts in the past month or two, and it starts with the biggest news since yesterday--Yahoo CEO Jerry Yang and his eventual title change.

For technology business watchers, and general lovers of big business-money players,we love the Shakespearan drama of technology giants who answer to daily Wall Street shenanigans. We love it when we can see the foaming at the mouth of the dominant, cash-in-hand companies of tech (Microsoft, IBM, HP, Google, Oracle, Symantec) sit on their hands and wait patiently to pounce.

The posts are:

1. Yahoo After Jerry Yang (ZDNet)

This is a solid roundup from ZDNet Editor-in-Chief Larry Dignan on the business issues facing Yahoo at this crossroads of Yang's departure, its failed deals, rejected partnerships and future. The most salient points in this post to me are about Yahoo's ability to "aggregate users better than anyone" and is a "valuable media property." It's not Number 2 for no reason, and being in the shadow of Google cannot help regardless of who is in charge. But as its stock price takes a log flume ride down the big, last drop, you have to wonder which companies beyond the usual suspects are sitting on the sidelines waiting for a new Obama administratiion to come forward.

Barry Diller's IAC anyone? Obama's close friend, Julius Genachowski, from the Harvard Law Review days will have a new gig in the administration. Not as if Genachowski doesn't have the credentials having been counsel to the FCC, along with counsel at IAC.

Sidenote: Good post on NYT about Yahoo needing a stronger content visionary or EIC, rather than a business guy.

2. Three the Hard Way: Politics, Lobbying and Tech Companies between Microsoft, Google and Yahoo (eWEEK)

As my Washington-based colleague over at eWEEK, Roy Mark, has to say, it's kind of strange that the Bush government got in an antitrust mood with the Google-Yahoo partnership given its propensity for allowing HUGE mergers of big-players in other industries (think Google / DoubleClick, AT&T / SBC, AT&T / BellSouth, Sprint / Nextel, and Verizon / MCI and countless other banks that merged over the last 8 years). This is not a huge conspiracy theory, just a look at the facts around lobbying dollars, past history and strange outcomes where Google is making sure everyone thinks Microsoft wanted to stop the Yahoo deal, which it probably did. .. Just saying.

3. Technology and the Election

There were some great reads on this almost everywhere, but two stood out to me.

First, a series posted by CIO Insight's Ed Cone-- who had an excellent four-part series on the techniques and technology strategies the Obama campaign employed that ended up making a huge, organized and socially-networked difference. Give these Obama posts the read they deserve.

The second post was Wired who had solid expose on the brilliant connections Obama campaign between grassroots psychology and the power of numbers in the election.

4. U.S. Senate Tries to Manage IT Failure and Accountability (ZDNet)

ZDNet's Michael Krigsman has a nice post following a Senate bill to help influence IT project failure in the government. Krigsman breaks the bill down and explains the significance of the potential moves in a smart, distilled fashion while showing you the key bill language too. As Krigsman writes:

This is a highly significant development representing a state of the art effort to control IT failures. Although the bill text is brief, it establishes several key points:

* Defining failure

* Specifying remedies

* Requiring transparency

Perhaps most remarkable, the bill offers a general formula covering a vast range of present and future IT projects. From that perspective, the bill is forward thinking and ingenious. Of course, theory often breaks down in practice and these general guidelines may not work as intended.

5. Technology in 2009 (eWEEK)

It's never too early to start the 2009 predictions (which we did here on Baseline already too). eWEEK Labs' Jim Rapoza has a post with links to his tech predictions for 2009, along with key 2008 technologies bound to shape 2009 and those technologies bound not to make it in 2009. Rapoza writes:

In much the same way that the introduction of AJAX launched a wave of dynamic and interactive Web 2.0 sites and applications, I expect to see many sites and applications that will start to push the boundaries of what a Web application really is...These new applications will in many ways operate much like desktop applications, letting users work offline, use interfaces free of standard browser buttons and interface conventions, and integrate with standard desktop applications.