Business success beyond the technology buzzwords
When I asked the question "What do you hate about technology?" the buzzwords of the fan boys came up often.
Buzzwords often derive from technical terms yet often have much of the original technical meaning removed, being simply used to impress others. Buzzwords make me tired. There are so many self proclaimed "experts" that show their alleged superior knowledge by using buzzwords to describe some technology product or feature. Here are some of my most hated buzzwords in the field of technology.
The phrase "cloud computing" is one of the most obnoxious overused terms in modern technology geek speak. Simply put, the cloud is just the internet. It's when a bunch of computers get networked together and you can access that network from anywhere. Storing data in "the cloud" just means it's available online so you can get it on multiple devices that have access to the internet.
For a few decades, there was the power to the people, with more and more "work" done locally on the computer in front of you, and more files stored on local serve. Computer networks became decentralized.
After technology department spent great sums on money on preparing for Y2K, when the Year 2000 and the dreaded Millennium bug was feared to crash all our computer networks, many cost cutting programs were put in place. Many financially strapped IT departments looked at how to save money, and things started moving away from a very decentralized model to a more centralized model. As technology improved, and strategies such as virtualization evolved, the need for servers scattered throughout an enterprise were moved to smaller but more power devices at a central location.
Now comes the next step in the evolution, those servers at my location are moving to "the cloud." That simply means even larger more powerful devices at a central location shared not only by my enterprise, but by many others.,
The cloud offers the "security" of my information stored on a super secure server that I don't have to worry about. It offers me, as in the local IT department. less worries because someone else maintains the server so that is less I need to worry about, correct? Well, maybe.
Less worries, less need for the local IT department right? So what happens now if the "network goes down" as in we lose an internet connection? No one can do any work. That's progress, back to the future with a the issues we had with a centralized model. Perhaps, in some ways. Companies that went into cloud are now thinking about a hybrid model with a mix of cloud based solutions with some type of local backup. Go figure.
What is the current version of the World Wide Web?
Surfing through various business and technology forums I find people talking about what will be new in Web 3.0 or Web 4.0. The question of defining World Wide Web versions is meaningless because there is no standard definition for terms like Web 3.0.
The term Web 2.0 became popular in 2004 when Tim O'Reilly used it at the first O'Reilly Media Web 2.0 Conference. The conference was organized by O'Reilly Media, a media company established by Tim O'Reilly that publishes books and websites. It was a buzzword created by a media company used to promote a media event.
One of my favorite quotes on Web 2.0 came from Tim Berners-Lee, director of the World Wide Web Consortium and one of the creators of HTML. When asked about Web 2.0 when that buzzword came out, Tim Berners-Lee's answer to Web 2.0 was “nobody even knows what it means.”
How good is your 4G network?
When the buzzword "4G" started being used in commercials by cell phone carriers, I wrote a few articles explaining it. I noted that the 4G working group defined one of the objectives of the 4G wireless communication standard as "a data rate of at least 100 Mbps between any two points in the world." Verizon was boasting "4G LTE" with speeds "up to 12 Mbps." Other carriers started jumping on the "4G" bandwagon with speeds in the 10 Mbps range, not near the original goal of 4G, which was to be 100 Mbps.
In 2010, Verizon 4G LTE stated speeds, (that were published on Verizon's website), are up to 12 Mbps. That is not a guarantee of 12 Mbps, just that the best possible speed is 12 Mbps. Doing some follow up research, 5 years later, I went to Verizon's website. It took me some searching to find it, but I found that they define 4G as follows: "Verizon 4G LTE wireless broadband is 10 times faster than 3G—able to handle download speeds between 5 and 12 Mbps (Megabits per second) and upload speeds between 2 and 5 Mbps, with peak download speeds approaching 50 Mbps."
That's pretty fuzzy math, anywhere from 2 to 50 Mbps. They have only slightly modified what they call 4G, and 5 years later they still have not reached the original goal of 4g, which was to be 100 Mbps.
The talk has begun on the next generation 5G network, so what does that mean? The short answer is that 5G has yet to be defined. The problem with terms like 4G and 5G is that they become marketing buzzwords rather than technical specifications. The terms 4G and 5G simply mean 4th generation, 5th generation, no real significance beyond that.
Geek speak made simple
The Guru 42 Universe was created to stretch your mind beyond the buzzwords to help you achieve business success. In our world today, and especially in technology, acronyms and geek speak are sometimes hard to avoid. There are times that having a meaningful discussion requires breaking topics down to simple terms.
This section of the Guru 42 Universe will look at some of the buzzwords, and apply our goal of geek speak made simple to various technology topics. Sometimes buzzwords take a concept that already exists and dress it up a bit.
While many people complain about the buzzwords of the fanboys, what can even more frustrating is when the buzzwords used by sales and marketing people. The experts like to make a product sound more up to date and in tune with the trends. Who wouldn't want to be ready for the internet if things and be cloud compliant? In discussion groups, and web site profiles, the bombardment to the brain of massive doses of this jargon makes me want to scream.
Stay on top of business success beyond the technology buzzwords by following our articles here at the Guru 42 Universe. Father of our Constitution James Madison is quoted as saying, "Philosophy is common sense with big words." Madison would probably agree with me on my rants about buzzwords, they are often big words to describe common sense issues.
The Guru 42 Universe
- Singularity futurist predicts when humans and machines merge
- When the internet is down my radio still works
- Net Neutrality and the myth that the internet is free
- Why it makes sense to receive FM Radio on your cell phone
- The myths and legends of evil villains Steve Jobs and Thomas Edison
- Will new FCC chairman get rid of Net Neutrality?
- Automotive dependability ratings skewed by modern technology