Top Trumps

Latest Edition: Winter 2014

CIO Connect Magazine

This Edition's Main Features:

Flexibility trumps Standardization

Flying Start

Unpleasant isn’t (necessarily) bad

I have just recovered from a brief but unpleasant bout of sickness brought on, I think, by something I ate. It was unpleasant, but it was “good” for me in that my body removed the toxins. Don’t worry, we’ll go no further! It crossed my mind during my recuperation that things that are unpleasant are not always bad for us. []

Shibboleths, Totems, Props and Placebos

I’m not sure there is an exact word for what I want to discuss this week – if there is let me know in the comments. None of the words in the title quite do it, but come quite close. There is a firestorm amongst audiophiles raging on the internet. For some time DAC (digital / analogue conversion) has been []

Awkward Squad?

Almost every team has at least one of them – a fully paid up member of the awkward squad. You know the sort of people, always asking “difficult” questions, not taking yes for an answer, whittling away at things by never quite dropping it. You notice them because they are working against the consensus. If the same questioning techniques are []

Losing the magic?

Three things struck me this week which I thought I would share with you. In no particular order: Apple’s quarterly results were astonishing The iPhone 6 hit a chord, bigger screen phones are something many people want. But alongside that highlight was the news that iPad sales declined 18%. It is roughly 5 years since Steve jobs announced the iPad []

Constraining Ideas

I read a story in the newspapers over the weekend that made me surprised and disappointed. The article was about a trial of driverless cars on the roads of the UK. There are to be four locations for a trial, and that this innovation is being taken so seriously surprised me. But then the disappointment kicked in as there is []

Je suis…

There has been so much coverage of the dreadful events in Paris, and they are so far away from my usual subjects in this blog, save for the knee-jerk reaction of some politicians to want to put in place surveillance measures that damage our freedoms in the name of freedom that having referenced the phrase that so many have spoken []

Caring about your information can make you look silly

I got into a big argument with my family over the Christmas break. It wasn’t about relatives, nor about who was doing the cooking or the washing up or even how many more days we really needed to eat turkey. It was much sadder than any of that – it was about privacy and how your personal data is used []

Happy Holidays

This blog is taking what I think is a well deserved rest over the holiday period. Normal service will resume in January. Thank you to each of you who has read one or more of my 47 blogs this year. I hope my ideas stimulate yours, my frustrations mirror those you have, and any insight is useful to you. So, []

Real World Cloud Benefits

Discussion about cloud services tend to be about IT benefits – CAPEX to OPEX, capacity flexing and rapid deployment. Those things are real benefits, and as our news feed this week shows, CIOs are more focused on cloud than they are on running in-house data centres. I have long argued that readily available public infrastructure and cloud computing services will []


I learned a new word yesterday. I picked it up from my colleague Alistair Russell, who had also learned it that same day. Only trouble is it turns out to be over 50 years old. We were discussing data analytics, and crashing together datasets to find new relationships and effects when Alistair came out with “munge”. No one in the []

An unnecessary Evil?

I wrote in an earlier blog that I felt I could justify my bias towards Apple, at least to myself. This week I intend to try to partly justify that bias to you as well. It’s got nothing to do with their beautifully designed product either. Last week Google hit the news with a story of a woman who tried []

Open Microsoft?

Steve Ballmer was frequently quoted as saying “Windows first; Windows best” when describing Microsoft’s strategy for software. Satya Nadella has changed that position quietly and emphatically. The most visible aspect was with the initial release of Office on iPad – with the useful functionality tied to Office 365 – and the recent release for iPhone (and upgraded for iPad), not []