CRN From the Coal Face

CRN From the Coal Face

05.8.2010 Tour de France shows up the technology

Tour de France highlights non-traditional opportunities for resellers. The 97th Tour de France ( has just been decided and Australia's hopes of victory were broken as quickly as Cadel's elbow at the beginning of Stage Eight. So many late viewing nights over the last month drove the point home to me that technology is no longer something that we geeks and nerds of the world can claim as our own. The acceptance of technology is now well and truly mainstream. ..

15.6.2010 Don't wait to put up your prices

Arguing for a price hike is never going to be popular. I copped a hammering in the local media recently after commenting on a council draft management proposal. One particular highlighted item is a proposal to put the price of water up to $1.53 a kilolitre, a rise significantly above the CPI. I was silly enough to do a media interview and say residents in our city had bought 1311 kilolitres of bottled water last year at $5000 a kilolitre, averaging about $159 a resi ..

31.5.2010 Converging on the ridiculous

There must be aliens out there providing alternative definitions of our reseller jargon for ordinary people. You may think this article is a work of fiction when you read the next sentence. I was recently at a birthday party for a friend of mine... There you go, IT nerds do sometimes get out from under their doona where they have been playing Half Life 2 for the last six months. The good part about being at a party is that no-one expects an IT person to be at the actual party, so they ..

10.3.2010 From the coalface: The IT profession needs to grow up

Doctors, lawyers,and even electricians belong to regulated industries, why not IT? Ineeded my figures done for my business at the end of the last financial year, so I went to a friend who was pretty good with numbers at school. Then I needed to have a contract created for my business to help with payments on large projects. So I rang another mate who was a big LA Law fan and even looked a little like Corbin Bernsen. He was pretty good with words so I got him to create the contract for ..

11.11.2009 Bill Shock: When big revenue comes at a cost

Resellers should look beyond the raw numbers for the bigger picture. It was at a recent telecommunications conference that I first heard the term "bill shock". This is the greatest example of supplier arrogance that I can remember in recent times. I think only a telco could have such a terrible billing model that they have invented a medical term to describe how their clients go into a state of shock as a result of receiving their bill. Medically, shock is a condition that a ..

22.10.2009 Opinion: Government should provide national IT infrastructure

We're not dense enough to make sense. Australia is big. For those of us who have ever looked past our front door it seems like I'm stating the bleeding obvious. But it is really big. Excluding places such as Antarctica that we control, Australia's area is 7.7 million square kilometres. By contrast, our population is quite small. At last estimate we only had 21.85 million people in Australia. Our population density is only 2.8 people a square kilometre. That's well below China with 18, ..

06.8.2009 Trans-Tasman cousins play hard in software too

I don't like to speak too highly of any group of people that confuses the word "sex" with a number - especially in the middle of what will likely be a seventh consecutive Bledisloe Cup loss - but I can't help but give credit where credit is due. Is it only me or does everyone notice how the Kiwis seem to punch way above their weight when it comes to software development? I have a number of clients in health and primary industries who rely on New Zealand software to run their businesse ..

08.7.2009 Opinion:Almost perfect in Vegas

After 20 years in this industry and after having attended countless conferences and seminars, I am yet to see the perfect conference agenda. That agenda looks something like this: 5pm: Pre Pre-dinner drinks. 6pm: Pre-dinner drinks. 7pm: Dinner. 9pm: Compulsory networking begins. 3am: Bedtime. 11.30am: Late breakfast. 12.30pm: Free time until 5pm. I am not sure if many employers would approve the attendance at a conference like this, but I personally believe that the most imp ..

22.6.2009 Quiz your old ways to see if they're worth keeping

Established processes can seem worthwhile but they may just be rusted-on habits holding you back. Do you sometimes see something and think to yourself "I just don't get it?" The reporting of Aussie rules football scores is at the top of my "I just don't get it" list. Only in AFL is it deemed necessary to give a score that details goals and behinds - when really only the total score matters. For example, if the Swans beat the Western Bulldogs 15.16 (106) to 16.5 (101) we really do ..

07.5.2009 Opinion: For resellers, the woes are similar everywhere

But the IT sector in Australia is travelling far better than its counterpart in the emerging economy of South Africa. I'm sitting 10,972 metres above the Republic of Malta on my way from Johannesburg to Amsterdam on the first part of a world speaking tour. I love watching the small screen which tracks our flight progress with figures and pictures - I'm sure it's there just for geeks like myself. The world looks so small on these screens and it was with this thought that I started conte ..