Articles

ALTOM: Can new technology make a toilet cleaner?

In a previous issue of IBJ, another columnist wrote that technology can raise the productivity of toilet cleaners. It wasn’t a central part of his argument, but as you might imagine, it caught my eye. I couldn’t resist looking into bathroom technology.

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ALTOM: How long will our ‘Net neutrality last?

Cable giant Comcast has fanned a typical smoldering Internet grumble-fest into a major screaming match, complete with a lawsuit
and cries for federal intervention. The outcome may affect how much it costs you and me to do business across the ’Net.

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ALTOM: Is your computer being commandeered under your nose?

Around the world, tens of millions
of computers are infected with sly viruses that invisibly take over a machine, letting it continue working but redirecting
part of its time to doing nefarious things, like storing ill-gotten data or sending out spam ads for improbable enlargements
of body parts.

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ALTOM: Are you disaster-ready, dust-induced or not?

You know you should back up your data for redundancy. But you can’t back up an entire airline industry. That’s
a lesson we learned recently when a volcano with the cat-crossing-the-keyboard name of “Eyjafjallajökull”
exhaled tons of volcanic dust into the clear skies over Europe and brought aviation worldwide almost to a literal grinding
halt.

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ALTOM: Do your company data files belong in the ‘cloud’?

The “cloud” is a relatively recent word to describe the Internet, but it has a rather specific connotation. It
refers to the Internet’s ability to take individual objects and break them into pieces so they can be stored and retrieved
without your knowing exactly where they’ve been.

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ALTOM: How the Amish make technology work for them

BusinessWeek (www.businessweek.com) has a recent story about a growing $1.8 million enterprise that’s doing
just fine without the Internet, Web site, texting, customer-resource-management software, a fax machine or a single computer.
In fact, the company doesn’t even have electricity.

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