November 1, 2010

Where I’m going with these obituaries

I have multiple motives or angles in writing about my late parents (and other deceased relatives).

That’s a lot. If it ever is completed, it will cover a lot of different blog posts. So please understand if any one post in particular feels a little bit sparse or incomplete — it’s just a piece of a larger whole.

The series so far

April 23, 2008

More technology drama in our blogs

Software Memories has a new theme. In the immediate future, that new theme will be rolled out to most or all of our other blogs.

We’re not doing this because we want to — it’s a nice theme, but we have a nicer one yet under development. Rather, this change is necessitated by an emergency upgrade to from WordPress 2.13 to 2.5, which our old and no longer supported theme can’t be counted on to handle.

If you’re reading here, you’re not affected by the emergency (except in that it caused the upgrade). Rather, the problem is that I got a de-indexing notice from Google this afternoon for DBMS2. Clearly, until fixed this will lower the number of new people who read our research. And why did I get the notice? Because there were 20-40K of hidden spammy links injected into Line 23 of the index.php file on DBMS2, Text Technologies, and Software Memories.

And I do mean “injected.” I deleted the code by hand, and naively applied for re-inclusion to Google — whereupon Melissa Bradshaw discovered it was back the next morning. The working diagnosis is SQL injection bug.

What this means to you is mainly that there will be an immediate look-and-feel change, followed by a second one as soon as we can get our development act together. And because the roll-out is hasty … well, everybody who reads this should know enough about software development to be able to complete that sentence for themselves. ;) Please let me know of any issues, whether via post comments, email, AIM, or carrier pigeon.

January 4, 2007

(Crosspost) New ways to read our research!

We’ve finally redesigned the Monash Information Services website. In particular, we’ve created two great new ways to read our research. First, there’s a new, Google-based integrated search engine. (And it really works well, the one glitch being that it brings back feeds and pages interchangeably. Try it out!) Also – and I really encourage you all to subscribe to this — there’s a new integrated research feed.

The reason you should care about these is in both cases the same: Our research is actually spread across multiple sites and feeds. I write about Google both in the Monash Report and on Text Technologies. I write about enterprise text management both on Text Technologies and on DBMS2. I write about computing appliances both on DBMS2 and in the Monash Report. I write about data mining in all three places. And now that there’s an integrated, industry history relevant to any of the other subject areas may find its way onto Software Memories. Your view of my views simply isn’t complete unless you have access to all of those sites.

October 18, 2005

30 years of software stories

I’ve long wanted to document the history of the software industry – and related parts of the technology world — for two major sets of reasons.

First, it’s simply an amazing industry – one of the great entrepreneurial successes of all time. From its start in the early 1960s, the computer software and services industry fought off a series off virulent attacks from much stronger and more powerful groups – the computer hardware industry, the aerospace industry (the first big timesharers), the banks, and the accountants. Products were innovated right and left; so were sales and marketing strategies. (And so, alas, also were financial accounting shenanigans.) With limited exceptions, this wonderful slice of business history is not well documented at all. And all instruction aside — I have experienced or otherwise picked up a lot of great stories in my 24 years of involvement in the technology industry, and just want to share some of them.

Second, a lot of the industry’s history is recent enough to provide significant perspective on our present and future. Software is central to how businesses and other enterprises (including governments) operate. It’s increasingly central to how we live at home. Software is important, and how it has been sold and used in the recent past is in many cases a good guide to how it will affect our lives in the near future. And since I’m a software industry consultant and analyst, professionally interested in which strategies and companies will succeed and fail, I have an especial interest in extracting whatever lessons I can from what has gone before.

I’ve been lucky enough to watch this industry from an early stage. The first time I visited Oracle it had fewer than 50 employees. The same is true of Lotus. I’ve consulted at the CEO level to a lot of the industry’s most interesting or biggest companies, and at lower levels to some of the rest. I’ve had spirited, multi-hour talks with many of the industry’s luminaries (some were even sober at the time). I’ve been a newsbreaker and a newsmaker. Along the way I even picked up considerable insight into the industry’s doings well before I got involved (which was in 1981). And I don’t want all these memories to be lost.

October 18, 2005

About the author

I’m having trouble with static pages in WordPress right now, so I’ll just do the “About” pages for the blog inline as posts.

About the author

In the early and mid-1980s, Curt Monash was a top-ranked stock analyst covering software/computer services. “software and data services” in the early and mid-1980s. Since then, he has always been around the news of software and related industries — reporting it, analyzing it, predicting it, and sometimes even making it. Entrepreneurs and other luminaries with whom he’s been privileged to have instructive private conversations include Bill Gates, Larry Ellison, Ross Perot, Mitch Kapor, Dan Fylstra, Ann Winblad, Mitchell Kertzman, John Doerr, Bill Janeway, Dave Duffield, John Imlay, John Maguire, John Cullinane, Rick Crandall, Marty Goetz, Steve Case, John Landry, Esther Dyson and many, many others. Fuller biographical information about Curt can be found on the “About” page for the Monash Report and at Curt’s Monash Information Services bio page; software industry leaders’ views of Curt may be seen on the Monash Information Services testimonials page. (Note: The Monash Information Services site hasn’t been updated for a while, and accordingly needs a bit of freshening.)

Curt’s views, including some historical observations, may also be found in the Monash Report (analysis of software and related industries), Text Technologies (covering text mining, search, speech recognition, text command-and-control, and other linguistics-related software sectors), and DBMS2 (covering developments in enterprise database management and XML-based SOAs).

Curt’s primary email address follows the template FirstnameLastname@Lastname.com , although disguising it that way is tantamount to closing the pantry door after the spam has already gotten in. Thus, please put a distinctive title on your email, so that your email won’t mistakenly be thrown out with the bad stuff. Mentioning “Software Memories Blog” would be one excellent idea.

October 18, 2005

About this blog

I’m having trouble with static pages in WordPress right now, so I’ll just do the “About” pages for the blog inline as posts.

About this blog

This blog is about the history of the software industry — its products, its people, its users, its companies, its triumphs, its failures, and everything else. That’s a huge subject, of course, so I’ll only be able to get to the barest fraction of it. Realistically, I suspect that many of the posts here will grow out of current-day issues I’m thinking about; indeed, I may blog elsewhere about present/future stuff, then add a link to a second historical note that I put here.

For more about what I intend to do with this blog, please see the post “30 years of software stories” right after this one.

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