In July we published our most popular story of the year: a collection of our favorite products that met their demise thanks in large part to unfortunate business decisions. Finding their way onto our list were several innovations-from minicomputers to software utilities-and more than a few of you added suggestions of your own. The topic was so popular, in fact, that we did a follow-up itemizing readers’ most mourned products.
The fastest supercomputer. The most intriguing data center.
The constantly changing core at the heart of Linux. We gave
you a tour of the most impressive and most unusual marvels
of the IT world… and boy, did you love the ride.
Just Say No
It’s always useful to set two authoritative speakers down
on opposite sides of an issue; readers can listen to both opinions and make an informed decision. We asked one author to
explain the reasons that IT departments might want to give
a thumbs-down to the popular open-source MySQL database, and
also asked a subject matter expert to explain the flip side,
why MySQL is a
great idea. Twice as many were interested in the reasons
to say No as were interested in supporting the database. Go
Our ABCs — short introductions to key technology topics &mdash
are our “backlist” of articles that often are found by Web
searchers who need a leg-up today. The most popular
is our ABC on Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP), and if
you’re at all familiar with the topic, you’ll surely realize
why. The ABCs of Supply Chain Management has been mighty popular, too. We also have an inclusive list of all (well, most) of the ABCs on one handy page.
To Catch A Predator
You might not have guessed that a security article would
be so popular. But this one, about the rise of new,
easy-to-use antiforensic tools threatening to render
computer forensics investigations cost-prohibitive and digital
evidence-gathering unreliable in court, is fascinating
(in a “wow, how ’bout that!” manner) as well as important
for IT departments to know.
The Great Debate
We learned from that MySQL example: people like to listen
to debates, and there’s no subject that garners more passion than which OS is best. In late 2006, Meridith Levinson chronicled CIO John Halamka’s
evaluation of the desktop operating system contenders in
his quest for the next-generation office computer.
This year, Halamka updated his research by evalutating both Ubuntu and SUSE, and the Linux advocates came out to share their opinions. But it’s the Apple loyalists (and its detractors too) that brought two pro-Mac OS stories into the top 10. The first touted its cost-effectiveness, the second described how businesses breaking up with Windows can more easily integrate Mac OS X into the enterprise.
Phoning It In
Esther Schindler asked IT workers who telecommute to share
their advice for their bosses about the process, technology,
and attitudes necessary for staff to be productive when
they work from home. After compiling 34 pages (count ’em
thirty-four) of input, these seven points were the ones
that staff most desperately wished the boss would understand.
Lurking in the Shadows
We’ve been covering the “shadow IT” department all year.
This article was its kickoff: the new IT department that
isn’t under the CIO’s control. “You may not even be aware
of it,” author Ben Worthen wrote. “But your users are, and
figuring out how to work with it will be the key to your
future and your company’s success.”
Fun and Games
We sometimes get links from unlikely places. We’re almost
embarrassed to admit it, but one of our top articles is
the result of recommendations from a consumer game-related
site. This fun quiz (which obviously is fun, or
it wouldn’t remain this popular) came from a vaguely
exhaustive and thoroughly unscientific survey of consultants
about habits and preferences, complete with accessories
and vocabulary. Also popular, and high on the entertainment scale, was Al Sacco’s list of 20 USB Gizmos That Have No Place in the Enterprise (But You’ll Love Just the Same).
Taking Care of Business
Often, the difference between success and failure is
spotting critical early warning signs that a project
is in trouble. Obviously, plenty of you were interested in
learning how to identify the symptoms.