Technology

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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RETURN ON TECHNOLOGY: Are cell phones bad for conducting business? Researchers have discovered something they call 'inattention blindness' for drivers using cell phonesRestricted Content

January 30, 2006
Tim Altom
After having a cell phone for several years now, I'm asking myself if they're worth having in the car. Ever since I saw that the ultra-cool Mike Connors had one in his convertible in the TV show "Mannix," I've been besotted with the desire to look similarly cool as I call my secretary back at the office. There's a sense of power and control with having a phone in the car. There's also a residual tint of elitist clout, too....
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CHRIS KATTERJOHN Commentary: Greetings from Florida-and the EdgeRestricted Content

January 30, 2006
NAPLES, Fla.-After 11 days of vacation here in Naples, I'm beginning to gear up to return to work. I'll be back in the office on the 23rd. Let me tell you what I've read since I've been down here. I started with "Memoirs of a Geisha," an engaging piece of fiction that tells a beautiful love story while revealing the inside world of Japanese geisha. Second, I tackled "The Grail Bird," a work of non-fiction that tells the story of...
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CHRIS KATTERJOHN Commentary: Greetings from Florida-and the EdgeRestricted Content

January 23, 2006
NAPLES, Fla.-After 11 days of vacation here in Naples, I'm beginning to gear up to return to work. I'll be back in the office on the 23rd. Let me tell you what I've read since I've been down here. I started with "Memoirs of a Geisha," an engaging piece of fiction that tells a beautiful love story while revealing the inside world of Japanese geisha. Second, I tackled "The Grail Bird," a work of non-fiction that tells the story of...
More

RETURN ON TECHNOLOGY: Are cell phones bad for conducting business? Researchers have discovered something they call 'inattention blindness' for drivers using cell phonesRestricted Content

January 23, 2006
Tim Altom
After having a cell phone for several years now, I'm asking myself if they're worth having in the car. Ever since I saw that the ultra-cool Mike Connors had one in his convertible in the TV show "Mannix," I've been besotted with the desire to look similarly cool as I call my secretary back at the office. There's a sense of power and control with having a phone in the car. There's also a residual tint of elitist clout, too....
More

IPOs take minor dip in 2005: Analysts stay optimistic; 3 Indiana companies set to go public in early '06Restricted Content

January 23, 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....
More

Firms face choice: Spend or be swallowed: Independent third-party benefits administrators watch consolidation wave sweep through stateRestricted Content

January 23, 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...
More

VIEWPOINT: Our schools let talent go to wasteRestricted Content

January 23, 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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Biz-incentive plan may be beefed up: Legislators seek to strengthen EDGE program by doubling retention tax credit to $10 millionRestricted Content

January 16, 2006
Peter Schnitzler
Indiana's showcase business incentive program is about to go through another tweaking. At the request of the Indiana Economic Development Corp., legislators are considering changing the EDGE tax credit program to give it more teeth to retain existing jobs. Since 1994, Indiana has used the Economic Development for a Growing Economy, or EDGE credit, to spur private-sector job growth. The program allows budding companies to abate state payroll taxes for new employees. Over the last 12 years, Indiana has authorized...
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Celadon says inland port would be economic boon to state: Putting customs clearing here would speed crossingsRestricted Content

January 16, 2006
Chris O\'malley
Celadon Trucking plans by the end of April to install global positioning satellite devices on 1,350 of its trailers, an application of technology that could pave the way for an inland cargo port in central Indiana. Tom Glaser, president of one of the largest trucking lines hauling goods between the United States, Mexico and Canada, plans to urge state economic development officials to build a multimodal port in Indiana that would include Mexican and Canadian customs-clearing facilities. Officials would inspect,...
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Trying to make wastewater less wasteful: Carmel startup sees big potential in new treatmentRestricted Content

January 16, 2006
Scott Olson
The yellow-hued liquid in a jar that business partners Bud Harmon and Timothy Ortman tote with them to tout their venture often is mistaken for urine. But the pair is pretty sure the chemical compound, which treats wastewater at food-processing plants, carries much more promise. A second-place finish in a November business plan competition hosted by Purdue University helped bolster their belief. Harmon, a past chairman of Purdue's Department of Animal Sciences, and Ortman, an aerospace engineer who cut his...
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Banking players on rise: Despite flood of mergers, area competition heats upRestricted Content

January 16, 2006
Matthew Kish
Big-ticket bank mergers grabbed plenty of headlines in the past two years. Just don't let the splashy news stories fool you. The number of players in the Indianapolis banking market is expanding, even amid consolidation in the industry nationwide. Over the past 10 years, the number of banks taking deposits in the metropolitan area has grown from 41 to 56, according to annual data from the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. Analysts attribute much of the growth to smaller banks and...
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From FFA to DNA: Businesses view convention as more than a gathering of corn growersRestricted Content

January 16, 2006
Matthew Kish
Don't call it the Future Farmers of America. That went out of style with pastel suits and parachute pants. The organization is now known as the FFA. And it's no longer just a gathering of crop jockeys. The change in moniker partly illustrates why business leaders are so excited for the first of at least seven annual conventions the organization will stage in the Circle City starting in late October. "FFA is a premier, if not the premier, youth organization...
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RETURN ON TECHNOLOGY: Let's throw computers out of the classroomRestricted Content

January 9, 2006
Tim Altom
I have a proposal to improve our K-12 school systems, saving money, time and frustration, and probably improving overall education to boot. Rip out all the computers. Take them away. Throw the cutesy game-style education software into a Dumpster. Keep just enough to stock a programming lab, a keyboarding classroom, and to provide a couple in the library for special research. The rest-out with them. After years of struggle to acquire networks, computers, software, printers and all the other trappings...
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J&J Detailing and More Inc.: More to detailing firm than a buff and grime J&J prides itself on experienced staff, exemplary serviceRestricted Content

January 9, 2006
Jo Ellen
J&J prides itself on experienced staff, exemplary service Two Southport High School chums were talking one day about how much people were willing to pay for clean cars at the good detailing shops. "We both had some ideas about how it would work. We went home, made some notes and realized we could do this ourselves," said John Boyce, 45, co-owner of J&J Detailing and More Inc., founded three years ago. The other J is Jeff Hord. The two had...
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Education, work force key hurdles to new economy:Restricted Content

January 2, 2006
Mark Miles
Having recently returned to Indiana after a 15-year absence, I see a region filled with both challenges and opportunities. The Central Indiana Corporate Partnership, the organization I've returned to serve as president and CEO, is focused on long-term economic prosperity for our region. To this end, our people are our most valuable resource. Unfortunately, central Indiana faces a significant challenge in making our human capital match our goal of a knowledgebased, 21st-century economy. Indiana ranks 46th in the educational attainment...
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In the new year, building on the successes of 2005:Restricted Content

January 2, 2006
Bart Peterson
This past year was one of the most active and successful in our city's history. We pushed through legislation to fund an expansion of the Indiana Convention Center and build a new multi-purpose stadium, both of which will be tremendous boons to our region's economy, pumping in more than $2.25 billion in investment and creating more than 4,200 permanent jobs over the next 10 years. In addition, through the leadership of the governor and legislature, a one-of-a-kind regional funding solution...
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Hoosiers set to observe daylight-saving time in 2006:Restricted Content

December 26, 2005
-Scott Olson
Indiana lawmakers beat the clock during the waning minutes of the legislative session to narrowly adopt daylight-saving time. The DST bill passed the House by one vote, and only after failing to obtain a constitutional majority the first time it was voted upon. Gov. Mitch Daniels, a Republican who included the divisive issue in his campaign, intervened to muster more support. House Speaker Brian Bosma held the voting board open for several minutes during the second vote until Rep. Troy...
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