Stories by Stephen Bell

CMDB: managing a complex world

BMC Software claims the configuration management database (CMDB) is the next big thing, even the current big thing, in managing today's increasingly complex IT environment. And it's giving it away - in a manner of speaking. BMC's Atrium is available free of charge to users of the company's service level management and incident management (helpdesk) tools.

Air is 'thick' with wireless networks - many crackable

The air in any central business district nowadays is thick with wireless signals and "wardriving" expeditions prove that a discouraging proportion of them are still unencrypted, says Nick von Dadleszen of

IAG sinks New Zealand IT project

IAG New Zealand's Endeavour insurance system, which was to have handled the needs of customers of both the State Insurance and NZI brands, has finally been abandoned.

The jury is in on enterprise Linux, says BMC chief

Linux is "going to become more and more important for the enterprise", says BMC Software worldwide chief Bob Beauchamp. His company now rates Red Hat a "tier one" operating system, meaning that it considers it obligatory to provide the latest versions of all its products for the platform.

NZ E-government makes its invisible mark

New Zealand e-government has arrived at the first of its self-imposed milestones, and reckons it's not doing at all badly. There are still, however, weaknesses in seamless collaboration among agencies, and a disappointingly low number of Internet users are using it to access government information and services.

Biometrics: 'the deal' at the heart of privacy sacrifice

Exaggeration, fears, gradual acceptance, trust and deal-making were identified as among the dynamics of a relationship between sacrifice of privacy and gaining technologically-assisted benefits, at an energetic panel session at last week's biometrics conference in Wellington.

Spyware may be next Australian government target

Australia's federal government may look at adware and spyware as a follow-up to its legislative actions against spam. On the other hand, some caution should be attached to "promises" in the run-up to an election -- the event currently dominating all Australian news.

Icebags cure for software development headaches

Integrating measurement of the complexity of software and performance of developers into the development lifecycle can have significant benefits in reducing risk, according to development metrics expert Ewa Wasylkowski.

GUI now too complex — Longhorn designer

The classic graphical user interface was well suited to an early Macintosh with 128kB of RAM that ran a few applications and about 50 files, “but it doesn’t scale”, says usability design specialist Don Norman.

Meeting dines on spam

With an anti-spam law only two months old, Australia has claimed to be responsible for only a seventh of the amount of unsolicited email emanating from New Zealand.