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October 6, 2008 | Vol 3 Issue 17


In This Issue:

Feature Article - Analysis
IBM Focuses on 'Engaging' Business Users with Latest Version of Cognos 8

New V4 is all about supporting better decision-making by supplying timely and more accurate information in a personalized way.

chris_smith.jpgBy Chris Smith

IBM Cognos last week released a new version of IBM Cognos 8 business intelligence software that is intended to help push more timely, accurate information into the hands of business users and better align the roles of the IT and finance departments to achieve a more efficiently running business.


V4 of Cognos 8 has been under development a relatively short time. V3 was released less than a year ago, but V4 has some impressive new features that allow users to determine what information they get, based on personal preferences and job requirements, thereby freeing IT from having to generate an endless stream of reports based on individual needs.


Feature Article - Analysis
Software as a Service (SaaS): Cloudy in SMBs

A recent survey shows limited awareness, constrained usage.

ron_exler.gifBy Ron Exler

Small and midsize business (SMB) executives have significant challenges in today's economy, including finding and keeping customers, controlling costs, and positioning for growth. Technology must support those objectives if they want SMB executives to pay attention.


According to the research firm Saugatuck Technology, which focuses on emerging enterprise technologies, Software as a Service (SaaS) refers to "software provided and used in a utility computing context, where the services provider delivers the functionality of the application or utility infrastructure software over a network, through a services interface. Typically this functionality is sold via a subscription model, or on a utility-style, "pay as you go" (PAYG), or per unit, basis." Saugatuck believes SaaS is becoming ubiquitous--and is affecting nearly all solution sectors, industries, and business and IT functions. According to IDC, SaaS software revenues doubled between 2006 and 2008, with it taking as much as 5 percent of the total software market. Gartner says that by 2012 more than two-thirds of independent software vendors will offer their applications as SaaS solutions.


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