Car Repair – Technological Trends

To explain the entire technological history of the car would be quite difficult; therefore, a focus on car repair will give a limited scope in which the causes of technological evolution can be explored. Technological change has created the car as we know it today, but the question is why? Through what circumstances has the car gone from a simple steam powered cart to the computerized, GPS located vehicles that we know today?

One aspect central to the study of technological change is control. The industry concerned with repairing vehicles has always had some level of control over the repair of cars. At the same time, there has always been the tinkerer and do-it-yourselfer. Car engines have been an object of fascination since their inception, and they were originally much less technically complex, giving the everyday person the potential to learn the craft of automotive repair.

Different movements in the technological evolution of the automobile have involved a movement toward complexity and the locking out of the everyday car owner from the process of maintenance and repair. Vehicle repair is becoming more about specialized knowledge and access to software than the tinkerer, who has become relegated to the status of “consumer”. Why has this trend affected different aspects of vehicle design? The answer is complicated; it involves everything from simplifying controls to meet consumer demand to the emergence of digital technology.

One trend in the evolution of the car is the simplification of controls, even at the expense of making the internal mechanisms more complex. Cars that were previously started via a crank mechanism were followed by cars that could be started from the inside. Currently, cars are made to start at the push of a button. However, the starting mechanism itself, from the transition from crank to button, has itself become more mechanically complex. This has an effect on car repair, necessitating ever more specialized technical knowledge of car repair workers.

Another trend affecting the body of knowledge of car repair workers is the increasing encroachment of computers into cars. Cars are increasingly software powered. This is part of the larger technological trend of digitization. Mechanical and analog processes are substituted by digital solutions whenever possible.

Car repair has become just as much about software as it has about hardware. Much of this software is proprietary, meaning that it is designed so that only licensed dealers have the knowledge and ability to repair it. The problem this causes is that people can no longer work on their own vehicles, and in fact, doing so would break laws such as the Digital Millennium Copyright Act that makes it illegal to tamper with or modify proprietary software.

As repair becomes more and more specialized, requiring more technically skilled and trained workers, it will become more important for automobile repair shops to be licensed by car companies and dealership repair will likely grow in its control over the process of repair. The digitalization of cars and their control will likely continue as technology further develops.

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Enterprise Technology Trend – The Professional Guide

Enterprise technology, in one word is the growth chronicle of business industry. Since last decade growth and its innovative planning has become an integral character of business expansion and quality existence in market. Now due to global exposure, companies are emerging as a global figure, at least they are trying to achieve their global status in terms of technology or the services they provide, and that is why it is necessary to be up dated about industry knowledge and its implications on trade scenarios.

Enterprise technology is the knowledge for the competitive industry and enterprise technology trend is the development quotient and inclination of market towards a particular, product, service, and change of attitude toward a business process which helps understanding the market and the associated trend for existence in the market.

Customer requirement, interoperability, supply-side efficiencies and due leveraging are the prime most factors for analyzing industry trend. The specific factors, apart from these prime issues, which help in gauging industry trend for enterprise technology, are mentioned here.

Industry consolidation is one of the major issues of understanding enterprise technology trend, etc. The merging trend, the acquisition character and trends, and global business related service and product launches are the most reliable ways to observe and analyze the industry trend from the aspect of enterprise technology trend issue.

Global business models are one of the most reliable resources to understand the industry trend. It is the analytic study of pursued efficiency level, back-office-cost saving modules, offshore outsourcing strategies, and meticulous leverage of global supply chain etc. play dominant role in acquiring a concrete idea about Global business models. At the same time discovering new markets and finding new customer segments are other proven ways for utilizing and implementing growth strategies for a specific company.

Price consolidation is a prime factor in understanding the complete perspective of industry enterprise technology trend. The cost of a product remains competitive when there is great demand for the product for the low quality product. Product or service use related data analysis can be the benchmark for launching new products and services in order to be ahead in own business category.

It is often find the big brands dominate the market. This happens for their major market share, quality control, and customer satisfaction factors. While the big companies feel their monopolies in achieving these sustaining issues by implementation of right products and right lunching and marketing plan, understanding the general trend may help them to form the strategy in a specific manner which produced excellent productivity.

Value added service availability is one of the major reasons for the success rate of a leading brand. The necessity of value added services play a major role in market; enterprise technology trend analysis helps in getting into the market with a certain service or product with a firm hand.

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Are You a Teacher or Parent that is “Up” on Music Technology Trends? To Find Out, Take the Quiz

Young people are amazing. They are able to keep up with technology without even “breaking a sweat”, while the rest of us struggle with some of the “easiest” of electronic technologies (remember the days of programming the VCR? tried your luck with TIVO yet?).

The simple truth of the matter is that younger people have an advantage; they are immersed in the new technologies. They have been since birth. For the rest of us, thankfully, we have those “younger people” to explain things to us!

I have compiled a brief list of questions that contain a few of the “hot” items and “buzz” words prevalent within the music technology culture of our students. Take the quiz and see how well you have assimilated the new music technologies of our current youth.

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Instructor: Prof. Pisano

Quiz one, lesson one- Music technology used by our youth

Name: ________________________________

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1. Is “Pandora” still only associated with misery and a box in your mind?

2. Does the term “bit torrent” sound like something that was in a Star Wars movie or can you dissect it and redefine the term into something a little more current?

3. Do… “YouTube”?

4. Is a “lime wire” just a green corroded battery wire in an unused transistor radio of yours?

5. Many of your students scribble on their tests, do you know if any of them are “scrobbling?”

6. Is “ripping” something you still only do with a saw or paper product? Does it “ring” any other “tones” in your mind?

7. “last.fm”? What! are you “Sirius”?

8. Do the acronyms R.I.A.A. and D.R.M. strike fear into the hearts of your students for some law they might be breaking?

9. iPod, Zen or Zune, which do you prefer?

10. Is “napster”, just another nickname for your overly sleepy child or can you “search” a little deeper into your archives and come up with something else?

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ANSWER KEY:

1. “Pandora” is a totally free, “web 2.0″, radio service that learns what music you like by comparing your choices of music to the Music Genome Project.

2. “bit torrents” are programs that use a specific protocol to allow the sharing of music, video and other files over the Internet by dissecting them into smaller pieces and sending them in chunks.

3. “YouTube” is an extremely popular video hosting web site. You never know what or “who” you may find in a video there.

4. “Lime Wire” is a “peer to peer” file sharing client that is used to share music and other media files across the web. Lime Wire has been recently subjected to a number of law suits initiated by R.I.A.A. (see number 5).

5. “Scrobbling” is a way to track the music that you are listening and share the list with others. last.fm uses this technology extensively (see number 7).

6. “Ripping” is the process of “lifting” the music from your CDs or the video files from your DVD and recording it to your hard drive or other type of storage device. One extremely popular program for ripping is “winamp”.

“Ringtones” are one of the hottest items available for your cell phone. They are customizable sounds for your phone that are enabled when someone calls you.

7. “last.fm” is a website using “web 2.0″ technology to provide you with an online radio. This service is similar to Pandora (see number 1).

last.fm also has the ability to “scrobble” your own music and share it with others (see number 5). Incidentally, the website last.fm is known as a “domain hack”.

“Sirius” is a satellite radio company. You may purchase the service for a monthly fee. The service can be taken along with you, in your car or anywhere you have their proprietary radio hardware.

8. R.I.A.A. stand for the Recording Industry Association of America. D.R.M. stands for Digital Rights Management.

R.I.A.A. over the last few years has unleashed a tremendous amount of lawsuits against corporate and individual citizens over D.R.M. violations.

9. iPod, Zen and Zune are all portable audio players. They are currently some of the most popular, coolest and smallest devices available today. All of them can, literally, hold hundreds, if not, thousands of songs.

10. “Napster” has been around a very long time (at least in Internet years). First, it was an illegal peer to peer music sharing service (see number 4). Now it is a pay service.

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ASSESMENT:

Number correct & Analysis:

1-4 Operating e-mail properly may be a real accomplishment for you… Thankfully, you may re-take this test to get a better grade! F

5 Half right sounds better than half wrong… D

6 You just might be able to have a meaningful conversation about these things with the students! C

7 Wow! you probably own an iPod! B

8 Yeoman’s work! Now, what’s a Yeoman? A-

9 Do some of your colleagues think you to be a little geeky? A

10 You are a music technological genius! Hey! are you under 25? A+

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Top ERP and Enterprise Software Technology Trends for 2014

As another year passed, the technology marketplace has been tumultuous in terms of adoption, trends, mergers and acquisitions. Large software players have broadened their portfolios and have started to target customers upstream and downstream from their typical customers. For the new year we have compiled a list of top technology trends – mostly for enterprise software. These trends include ERP, Social business, CRM, BI/EPM/Analytics, Collaboration, Project Failure/Success, Mobile and Security and others are the main areas of focus.

Looking back at the 2013 list of technology trends, most of them have come to pass and are still evolving as adoption continues to grow. Projects continue to fail, spending increases, infrastructures and applications are being remade using the cloud and other IT issues continue to appear and also be resolved.

Here is a list of what we think the top software trends will emerge in 2014.

1. Rise of BI/EPM/Analytic Vendors: This trend has become apparent as many new small start-ups have introduced some type of analytics or BI tool. We have seen very vertical specific solutions to broad all-encompassing software that can be customized by industry. A reason for this trend is that enterprise applications have become easier to integrate and require less technical knowledge to aggregate data out of a system. Organizations are requiring more real-time information, by implementing these systems unlocks the decision-making potential that is stored in the data.

2. Increased Consultant Use: This trend is a 180 from organizations wanting to bring back in-house technical expertise. CIO’s have committed to spending more money on contractors for the upcoming year and software selection is a key component of this spend. Other areas where organizations will spend money in IT and Business alignment are resourcing to support existing projects, project management recovery services have started to push forward as an important area to save failing IT projects to get them back on track. Organizations often do not have the resources or skill sets to properly evaluate enterprise software thereby, more attention will be attributed to lowering project failure. An impartial properly executed software selection greatly lowers the risk of IT failure.

3. ERP’s and Enterprise Software Projects Continue to Fail: Lack of expertise and accountability from both the organization and the vendor lead to failed implementations. There is no clear direction from organizations as to what should be implemented, by whom, what timeframe is acceptable, training, POC, management of scope creep, budgetary overruns, and how problems are resolved should they arise with definitive timelines and accountability. Clear business process definitions are often not revealed by the customer leaving vendors to guess how an organization does business. Organizations should be fully transparent with the vendors they select as they business partners with full two-way communications whereby the vendor can provide a smooth transition after implementation and the organization should also become a reference site for the vendor.

4. Changing IT/Business Selection Criteria: As delivery models continue to change organizations are evaluating different priorities and criteria. Previously organizations have relied too much on features and functions when selecting enterprise software. Many new selection criteria have started to emerge such as: nuances of data, cloud model, portability, scalability, TCO, SLA levels, Vendor lock-in, ROI and agility are areas that more closely scrutinized.

5. Enterprise Software Categories Continue to Merge: The creation of new enterprise software categories continues to emerge. Specialized software vendors have started to include additional functionality that expands the breadth of their solution but often times not the depth that is required. Customers are confused as to how to match the right type of software with what functions and depth they actually require. Vendors have started to include social, collaboration, CRM, project management, billing and BI within their software. This delineation muddies the water for the consumer as they may not know how to categorize their business to match enterprise software categories thereby contacting the wrong vendors to start out their software evaluation.

6. Paying More Attention to BYOD and Security: As use of mobile devices continues to proliferate mobile security and social user policies must be put into place and enforced. Additional security will lower organizational risk by securing multiple mobile devices. Employees should also have direction from the company as to what is acceptable and not for social media interaction, who owns the information, where it stored and clear lines of communication where social accounts differentiate if communications are from the company or an individual user.

7. Increased Spending for Social, CRM and Email Automation: Organizations have committed more IT budget to these softwares. Coincidentally, this is one of the enterprise software categories that are blending functionalities. An organization should comprehend its main business function as to what the organization requires and the auxiliary functionalities. A mistake often made here is that the auxiliary functionalities become the focus which strays the original intent of the software evaluation.

8. Shadow IT Emerges: This is caused by the CMO spending that does not often include the CIO. Usually, the new marketing, social software and BI software is implemented and rarely incorporates into existing IT infrastructure. The new software is independently supported, updated and managed proving difficult for internal IT management and integration to existing systems. Support also becomes a point of contention as the Shadow IT organizations are created as support is often non-coherent and difficult to manage.

9. Vendor Consolidation Continues: More vendors are increasing their portfolios by acquiring either complementary software to bolster existing functionality or even acquiring software that is completely different from current offerings. Organizations should carefully distinguish their needs and if the vendor can support their requirements, if the vendor has enough industry experience or is new to the space altogether are areas for companies to watch out for.

10. New Government and Regulatory Standards: These new requirements will require system upgrades and in some cases new system implementations. ObamaCare, New HIPPA and medical industry requirements will drive software spend in this sector. Also there have been many changes in food processing and manufacturing industries that will cause companies to re-evaluate existing systems or completely installing something new.

11. Salesforce.com Turning into ERP: Salesforce continues to grow its cloud presence by acquiring more SaaS solutions. Its recent acquisitions and cloud portfolio suggests that one of the few plays to increase company value is to increase its offerings. SFDC will acquire solutions that complement their SCRM business with more HR/HCM, Financial and possibly project management which will effectively turn into an ERP for Services. The Oracle partnership suggests that SFDC is targeting Workday customers with Oracle functionality – all to be offered in the cloud. This one should prove interesting to see where this ends up.

12. Further IT Specialization Being Required: New softwares are emerging and requiring specialized expertise. A new software category that enables integration and workflow capabilities are greatly reducing complex IT tasks. However, these new applications often require highly specialized expertise such as programming, business process mapping, API creation, administration, integration and design capabilities that may not have been part of the IT department.

13. Organizations Going Hybrid Cloud: Organizations are adopting a combination of public and private cloud creating hybrid clouds. Organizations are not comfortable putting some types of information in the cloud. They create an internal cloud and have less important information in the public cloud. The cloud provides a seamless integration for employees.

It will fun to see what unfolds this year as with each year. Did we forget any? What trends do you see?

Eval-Source is a consulting firm that provides enterprise software selection and strategic technology consulting services and products for organizations to achieve success in their IT initiatives. Our consulting practices include cloud and on-premise software evaluation services, Enterprise Software Project Management and Recovery Services, Corporate training and strategic technology consulting. Our Tru-Eval selection system allows organizations to avoid IT failure, receive greater ROI and provide accurate decision support for enterprise software procurement. What sets us apart is our unbiased best in class consulting services that provide our clients with value, direction and success in selection, planning and optimization of their technology systems.

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