Technology

Indiana's universities give industry a boost: State touts wealth of higher-ed insurance programsRestricted Content

March 6, 2006
Scott Olson
Politicians seem so much more 21st century when they talk about attracting life sciences and information technology jobs to Indiana. But they're not about to ignore the state's second-largest employer-the often-overlooked insurance industry. Indiana insurers employ more than 60,000 Hoosiers, second only to farming, and pay an average annual salary of $47,500, nearly $10,000 more than the state average, according to a 2004 study by Purdue University. Moreover, the industry boasts some of the state's largest public and private companies-WellPoint...
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RETURN ON TECHNOLOGY: Is too much news leaving you woozy these days?Restricted Content

March 6, 2006
Tim Altom
When it comes to news, there are two kinds of consumers: the "E.F. Hutton people" and the "cocktail party people." E.F. Huttoners have it easy. Cocktail partiers are only now getting some help making their lives more manageable. Years ago, E.F. Hutton ran a series of commercials that would always take place in a crowded spot, like a restaurant or plaza. One actor would be talking about his investment advice and preface it with, "Well, my broker is E.F. Hutton,...
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Making the grade: Pay-for-performance system nearing reality for local physiciansRestricted Content

March 6, 2006
Tom Murphy
Central Indiana stands on the leading edge of a national push by health care insurance systems to link doctors' pay with their performance. The Indiana Health Information Exchange-a not-for-profit collaboration among some of the state's largest health care providers-is developing a program that uses data collected from insurers and care providers to produce quality reports. Those reports then will be sent to doctors and used by the insurers to develop incentive programs for reimbursement. The goal: Start a system by...
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Emerging India: Indians explore prospects in Indiana: Delegation of 15 execs finds opportunities during tour of Indianapolis, Purdue tech parkRestricted Content

March 6, 2006
Peter Schnitzler
Indians explore prospects in Indiana Delegation of 15 execs finds opportunities during tour of Indianapolis, Purdue tech park J.V.V. Satyanarayana spent the last three years launching his Chennai, India-based software firm. But after only 24 hours in Indianapolis, he was ready to expand his operation. Satyanarayana was part of a delegation of 15 Indian executives who visited Indiana last week. His business, SVL Infotech, manages the IT end of medical billing. It has 100 employees and handles claims worth $100...
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IT firm bought again: New York company acquires Core Business Technology but will move HQ to IndyRestricted Content

March 6, 2006
Chris O\'malley
Now, Core Business Technology Solutions has gone down the aisle again, tying the knot last month with White Plains, N.Y.-based Convergence Technologies Inc.-a deal that makes Indianapolis headquarters for a company with 270 employees and $105 million in revenue. But, with apologies to Wynette, nobody at this wedding sang, "Stand by your LAN." The good ol' local area network is now just a slice of the increasingly diverse information-technology products and services Core offers small and midsize companies these days....
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Clarian climbs aboard podcast bandwagon: Hospital network finds new way to broadcast its message to employees and the communityRestricted Content

March 6, 2006
Tom Murphy
Communications experts say the medium, which has been around only a couple of years, carries loads of marketing potential. "You're immediately tying a voice to the company and a face to the company. That's a powerful thing," said Kelly Hendricks, president of BLASTmedia, an Indianapolis-based public relations firm. "It's going to be interesting to see how this evolves." Evans decided to try Clarian's hand at podcasting after his research found it costs "almost nothing" to produce a message and upload...
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Six firms land $6.1M from state tech fund: 21st Century program issues its first grants since 2004; local companies Semafore, Cadent among recipientsRestricted Content

February 27, 2006
Scott Olson
The state launched the fund in 1999 to invest in new technologies and appropriated $137 million during the first five years of the program. The state awarded no money in 2005, partly because none was available the first half of the year. The administration took the second six months to get acquainted with the fund. Kidd left his job as vice president of the Indiana Venture Center in October to join IEDC. The veteran small-business consultant since has helped reshape...
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Blog Boom: Newest Web craze becoming a key tool for business marketing, communicationsRestricted Content

February 27, 2006
Anthony Schoettle
Myles Brand needed a way for his organization to reach out to the public. It had to be direct and immediate and initiate an honest two-way discussion. Brand, NCAA president, chose an offbeat idea-albeit one with a growing following-to solve this age-old business problem. He gave the directive late last year for the NCAA to launch its first blog, an online presence that two years ago few corporate types understood, much less considered a viable means of communication. Now, the...
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College hatches business to measure airwaves: Big wireless firms flocking to one-of-a-kind databaseRestricted Content

February 27, 2006
Chris O\'malley
Ball State University has created what could be a moneymaking venture to help the nation's wireless providers find dead spots in their signal footprints even before they put up the first towers. The university's Office of Wireless Research and Mapping said it has at least $720,000 in tentative contracts from businesses and government agencies. "My hope is, in two or three months, we have a fully operational center that is going to be recognized nationally," said Bizhan Nasseh, a Ball...
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Open source gaining traction: Government departments, more businesses seek alternatives to Microsoft, othersRestricted Content

February 27, 2006
Scott Olson
The Indiana Department of Education's effort to outfit high schools with computers is a costly endeavor for a state strapped for cash. But installing what is known as open-source software is softening the blow. As the name implies, open-source programming is available for users to study, modify and share freely-a sharp contrast to the proprietary software sold by behemoths such as Microsoft Corp. and Oracle. Expensive licensing fees associated with the proprietary software sent the Education Department looking for alternatives....
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PETER SCHNITZLER Commentary: Embrace India while you still canRestricted Content

February 27, 2006
PETER SCHNITZLER Commentary Embrace India while you still can India will fool you, if you don't pay attention. The term "developing nation" doesn't begin to do it justice. Having traveled internationally a number of times before, I thought I was prepared for whatever culture shocks awaited more than 8,000 miles away. I anticipated the heaving crowds, the livestock in the crumbling streets, even the abject poverty. I didn't expect innovation. And especially not entrepreneurship on par with the kind found...
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Startup receives first Indiana Seed Fund investment: Purdue-bred SonarMed plans move to IndianapolisRestricted Content

February 27, 2006
Tracy Donhardt
Until recently, SonarMed Inc., a startup developing a new type of breathing tube, was just a mailbox at Purdue University. But having recently been awarded the first investment from the BioCrossroads' Indiana Seed Fund, SonarMed plans to move into office space in Indianapolis, hire 15 to 20 employees before the end of the year and begin seeking U.S. Food and Drug Administration approval for its device. The Indiana Seed Fund was formed last summer and now has $6 million to...
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Lessons from attorneys on the front lines in India: Be ready to grease palms, face cultural differences:Restricted Content

February 27, 2006
-Peter Schnitzler
BANGALORE, India-Petty bureaucrats are more than a nuisance in India. Some like to line their pockets. And if minor officials don't get what they want, they might shutter a U.S. company's operations. Given enough time and money, disputes can be settled in India's infamously slow courts. But V. Umakanth, a Bangalore partner with the Indian law firm Amarchand Mangaldas, counsels clients to simply make the small grease payments some administrators expect. "There is still corruption. Foreign businesses need to deal...
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Emerging India: Opportunity or threat?: Indiana businesses brace for growing global competitionRestricted Content

February 27, 2006
Peter Schnitzler
Opportunity or threat? Indiana businesses brace for growing global competition Next month, President Bush will make his first official visit to India. To most of the American media, it'll be just one more round of global terrorism discussions with a distant foreign nation, perhaps worthy of a brief. The Indian press knows better. Six weeks ahead of Bush's trip, banner headlines about it ran in every newspaper. Al Hubbard knows better, too. Friends with Bush since their days at Harvard...
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Tiny firm initiates 'triple play': Hancock Telecom first to bat with voice-data-video comboRestricted Content

February 20, 2006
Chris O\'malley
Not so long ago, the heart of Hancock Telecom in the tiny town of Maxwell was a concrete bunker ticking with the solenoids of telephone switching equipment. But about a year ago, the devices were moved to a corner to make room for rack after rack of satellite receivers-fed by a 32-foot dish big enough to cap a corn silo. The product: 176 channels of network and local TV programming that leave headquarters in the form of pulsing light via...
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Entrepreneurship the Indian way: A day with a Bangalore software-maker reveals business parallelsRestricted Content

February 20, 2006
Peter Schnitzler
BANGALORE, India-HealthAsyst CEO Umesh Bajaj remembers when the only computers allowed in India were self-assembled. As recently as 20 years ago, the Indian government's protectionist measures prohibited foreign companies from directly selling PCs. Instead, Indians imported microchips and built the computers themselves. In his first job as an electronics engineer for an Indian conglomerate, Bajaj crisscrossed the country marketing versions of mainframes and desktops made in India. Today Bajaj, a 55-year-old born in New Delhi, owns his own Bangalore-based health...
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Emerging India: Passage to Bangalore: Hoosiers seek outsourcing and investment opportunitiesRestricted Content

February 20, 2006
Peter Schnitzler
Passage to Bangalore Hoosiers seek outsourcing and investment opportunities BANGALORE, India-The deal was falling apart. Despite a week of flirtation and friendly negotiations, the two young Indian entrepreneurs rejected the offer from the group of Hoosier investors. Frustrated, the investors walked out of the hotel conference room. The chance to speculate on an Indian software startup called Picsquare.comhad fizzled. But none of the six Indiana business leaders was demoralized. After all, they'd crossed the globe to pursue business opportunities in...
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RETURN ON TECHNOLOGY: The Fortune 500 begins to dance with blogsRestricted Content

February 20, 2006
Tim Altom
Ford and GM do it. So do Sprint, Sun, Boeing and Xerox. But Raytheon, 3M, Kmart, McDonald's, and most of the rest of the Fortune 500 don't. At last count, only 22 of the Fortune 500 did it, according to Socialtext.net. Why do so few companies blog? Before going on, let's define "blog." A "blog" is shorthand for "weblog," which is essentially an online diary anybody can read and anybody can annotate with comments. Blogs are not strictly Web sites,...
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New FBI facility: tough case to crack: Government struggling to find site to build field office for bureauRestricted Content

February 20, 2006
Tammy Lieber
The highly-sought-after job of developing a new building for the FBI's Indianapolis field office is still in play, but it's hampered by the federal government's inability to find a site for the building. A bevy of local and national developers are expected to throw their hats in the ring to develop the building, which the Government Services Agency says needs to be 110,000 square feet. For the winner, it would be a high-profile project and one of the more significant...
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Want-ad battle brewing: Newspapers feel threatened by state's deal with MonsterRestricted Content

February 13, 2006
Anthony Schoettle
A four-year, $2.8 million deal between the DWD and McLean, Va.-based Monster Government Solutions to develop and maintain an online job search and recruitment system is coming under heavy fire, with newspaper operators saying a system funded by their own tax dollars will harm their business. DWD officials said the deal is designed to lower unemployment and boost Indiana's economy. "We think this deal is going to result in a brain gain, keeping people employed and keeping our college graduates...
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ECONOMIC ANALYSIS: Let the private sector operate the Toll RoadRestricted Content

February 13, 2006
Patrick Barkey
Watching the tug and pull of partisan politics in full bloom in our state capital brings to mind that old saying about making laws and making sausage. You don't really want to see how either one happens. But as our elected leaders posture and fight over the table scraps of new revenue that can realistically be said to be squeezed out of what has historically been an overcommitted state budget, another, more hopeful, vision comes to mind. It's a vision...
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Bills clash over video regulation: Phone giants, cable firms fight about franchising rulesRestricted Content

February 6, 2006
Chris O\'malley
In fact, some say the franchising clash has overshadowed the real implications of deregulation: Cable operators will get their first real competition since satellite TV mushroomed in the mid-1990s. Municipalities, which grant franchise agreements to cable TV companies and collect millions in fees in return, hyperventilated when Sen. Brandt Hershman, R-Wheatfield, introduced Senate Bill 245 last month. It would give the Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission the job of doling out statewide video franchises. Cities would lose that authority, but would...
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IPOs take minor dip in 2005: Analysts stay optimistic; 3 Indiana companies set to go public in early '06Restricted Content

January 30, 2006
Scott Olson
Three Indiana companies took the plunge to go public last year, two less than the number that did so in 2004. The state's slight dip in initial public offerings mirrors the slump in activity nationally. But Indiana appears to be off to a fast start for 2006. Three other Hoosier companies filed to go public late last year, but had yet to complete their IPOs by year's end. Overall, the number of companies that went public on the major U.S....
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Firms face choice: Spend or be swallowed: Independent third-party benefits administrators watch consolidation wave sweep through stateRestricted Content

January 30, 2006
Tom Murphy
For small companies, "their systems costs are just eating them alive," said Donley, president of Donley & Co. Inc. "If they lose a couple large clients, all of a sudden they go from being in the black to being in the red." Donley and others say the skyrocketing cost of doing business has triggered a wave of consolidation in the Indiana market for benefits administration. Since 2003, larger companies have gobbled or plan to gobble at least seven independently owned...
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VIEWPOINT: Our schools let talent go to wasteRestricted Content

January 30, 2006
Ginny Burney
We have two kinds of schools: those that encourage each child to be all he/she can be and those that focus on being efficient institutions for groups of children. The first kind of school finds ways to help each child who struggles, meets each child's educational needs, and finds ways to provide each child with the context to achieve as much as he/she can at the most appropriate pace. The second kind of school is focused on making sure as...
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