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March 4, 2015 By Arborry Hill Road Company, LLC

Service Academy Forums for iOS

A discussion forum for service academy candidates, cadets and midshipmen, parents and alumni

August 24, 2011 by

Bringing back the blimp

One way to get gas-guzzling trucks off the road would be to put their cargo on more eco-friendly blimps. A British company is doing just that, in Canada.

May 26, 2011 by

Intel holds steady on corporate sustainability performance

The latest high-tech giant to report on its corporate sustainability initiatives is Intel, and its 2010 Corporate Responsibility Report offers more evidence that the road toward environmental best practices is full of many pot holes. On the face of it, there are many great things for the company to report -- notably its use of solar energy and purchases of renewable energy credits.

April 1, 2011 by

Travel Tech Q&A: Citrix's Peter Brockhoff

Vice president of Citrix Australia and New Zealand, Peter Brockhoff, has been with his company since 2001. But while he's stayed at one firm for a decade, he's not had the luxury of staying in one place, travelling often for business. He talks to us about his time on the road.

October 8, 2009 by

Can IBM cure the cul de sac?

Smarter water systems and smarter road networks and smarter electrical grids are all very nice. How will IBM, or any company, get cities to be smarter in planning for growth?

July 17, 2009 by

McCartney on Broadway!

Our parent company CBS has put out some web video of Paul McCartney's post-Letterman Show gig outside the Broadway theatre where the Beatles first performed back in 1964. Of course, Macca is no stranger to rooftop gigs, having played The Beatles' last live performance on top of Abbey Road Studios in January 1969.

June 1, 2009 by

Microsoft-Merck alliance boosts Amalga

Microsoft gets a jump-start into a profitable niche within hospital software. Merck gets out of a business outside its strategic plan. Rosetta customers should get better software and service down the road, from a company serious about the space and scaled to gain share.

September 30, 2008 by

ASG targets Defence with acquisition

IT services firm ASG Group has acquired ASX-listed Oracle database firm AD-B Group for $3 million, claiming it gives the company an in-road to lucrative defence contracts.

May 16, 2008 by

Run by Wall Street? A Cause or a Company?

In light of the Yahoo! - Microsoft fiasco, fellow bloggers Larry Dignan and Vinnie Mirchandani havebeen asking the question whether there is too much emphasis on just onestakeholder - the shareholder. After all, shouldn't a technologycompany (or any company for that matter) be equally focused on thevalue for customers, partners and employees.I believe that the real problem is not that of prioritization of stakeholders but a more fundamental issue: Does your company stand for something?Larry and Vinnie discussed the following in a recent conversation: Technology companies cater to Wall Street interests too much often at the expense of good strategy. Isn’t what a company does for customers and developers more important than shareholder interests? What’s wrong with being a mid-size technology company if customers and employees are happy and the products–software, hardware, services–fit a need? There’s nothing wrong with it, but Wall Street would lead folks to believe that any company that isn’t acquired by Oracle isn’t worth existing. And why are we listening to Wall Street at all given that analysts, investment bankers and other financial wonks can’t even manage their own businesses (subslime, credit swaps, write-offs galore)?Evenas I do agree that the recent focus on shareholder's (short-term)returns is probably misplaced, the real problem is elsewhere.What Does The Company Stand For?Theproblem with Yahoo! is not just its mediocre financial performancecompared to its more successful cousin in Mountain View - Google, butthat Yahoo! does not seem to stand for anything and rarely arouses anypassion amongst customers, employees or partners. Its a listlessorganization that seems to be going through the motions - see this excellent post by Jeff Nolan.Marc Andreesen recently wrote up an article praising dual-class structureto help management teams prevent hostile takeovers. I believe this isthe wrong remedy - its a cure for a disease that should be prevented inthe first place: A lack of clear vision around what a company is tryingto achieve.A company (and its management team) deserve to beindependent as long as they inspire confidence among investors,employees, parters and customers that the company has a vision that itaspires to that the stakeholders can commit to.After all, whatdoes Yahoo! stand for? A hodge podge of websites relating toentertainment, communication, search etc with no grand vision ofchanging our (digital) lives. There are hundreds of smaller companiesthat are not under any duress to be acquired because their managementteams inspire confidence around a vision.Here is a list ofcompanies that I don't know what they stand for, and hence will nothave shareholders clamoring to keep them independent if the rightopportunity came along: BEA (Sold) Yahoo! Tibco WebMethods (Sold) IAC (Bought/Sold/Consolidated/Unbundled)Contrast this with list with: (Changing the enterprise software world; See my disclaimer) Google (Organizing World's Information) Amazon (Changed Retail, Now Web Services) COST (Concur, Omniture, Salesforce and Taleo - the SaaS horsemen, per Phil Wainewright)Thesame holds true beyond technology businesses - if your company does notstand for something bigger than management's entrenched interests andegos, its not very likely to inspire shareholders to forgo a 50%overnight return. There is a storyof two labourers working at a construction site, breaking stones. Apasser-by asked one labourer what he was doing. “Breaking stones”, wasthe bored reply. A few yards down the road the traveller came acrossthe other labourer. This worker was different; there was a spring inhis steps and a tune on his lips. So the passer-by asked, “What are youdoing?” “Oh, I am helping Christopher Wren to build the greatestcathedral in the world.” The vision of the great architect, SirChristopher Wren, of building a cathedral that was to be the pride ofEngland, gave meaning to the labourer’s work.So, the questionis: Do your stakeholders see your company as a stone-breaking ventureor as a company that's building a Cathedral?


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