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  • Enterprise IT, News - Apr 23, 2014 15:58 - 3 Comments

    Greens claim NSW LMBR project turning into a disaster


    news The NSW Greens late last week claimed to have obtained documents showing that the NSW Department of Education and Communities’ wide-ranging Learning Management and Business Reform program, which involves a number of rolling upgrades of business administration software, was deployed before it was ready, with “appalling consequences for administrative staff, principals, teachers and students”.

    The Learning Management and Business Reform (LMBR) program was established in 2006 to modernise the way the Ddpartment manages and delivers student enrolment and administration, learning management, support services, finance, human resources and technology services to schools, TAFE NSW and the Department’s corporate offices. At the time, it was expected to be delivered in two phases over eight years and to incur capital costs of $386 million.

    The LMBR program is replacing some of the Department’s legacy software systems that are old, inefficient, costly and slow. Systems to be replaced during stage two of the program include two payroll systems (iSeries for schools/corporate and Lattice for TAFE NSW) and the schools finance system (Oasis).

    Since the original business case, some additional legacy systems in the human resources area have been added to the scope of work. The LMBR program will also replace some manual administrative systems currently used by staff in schools, TAFE NSW and corporate offices. The project as a whole is based on SAP software. Continue…

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    Blog, Telecommunications - Apr 24, 2014 14:00 - 7 Comments

    iiNet to splurge $350m on content, media


    blog Over-the-top plays have not always gone well for Australia’s telcos and Internet service providers. While the sector’s big players — Telstra, Optus, TPG, iiNet and Vodafone — have proved themselves able at selling telecommunications services, in most cases they have also found it hard to make money from content or services sold over the top of their telco packages. A notable exception would be Telstra’s joint venture relationship with Foxtel, which has proven quite lucrative for the pair. But this doesn’t appear to daunt iiNet, which tells the Financial Review this week that it has a war chest for just this purpose. The newspaper reports (we recommend you click here for the full article):

    “iiNet chairman Michael Smith says the Perth company will use a $350 million war chest to make media and internet acquisitions as part of an “aggressive” campaign to avoid becoming a so-called “dumb-pipe” broadband provider.”


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    Analysis, Industry - Apr 24, 2014 16:05 - 0 Comments

    Free to fail: Why corporates are learning to love venture capital


    This article is by Marco Navone, Senior Lecturer in Finance at University of Technology, Sydney. It originally appeared on The Conversation.

    analysis Opening a venture capital branch seems to be the new “thing” in the corporate world. While Telstra and Westpac are the new big national players, Google is clearly ahead of the curve, with two distinct venture capital firms: the newly launched Google Capital and the five-year-old Google Ventures.

    But why are so many companies, across a range of sectors, now running to open their own venture capital funds? And why does a company like Google, which has already delivered tremendous innovations in the past, now need to innovate “on the outside” with not one, but two, venture capital branches?


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    Blog, Digital Rights - Apr 23, 2014 12:57 - 32 Comments

    Cinema execs blame piracy for $20 ticket prices


    blog If you’ve attended an Australian cinema recently, you’ll be aware that $20 ticket prices are now a thing. If you just hit up a film every couple of weeks and avoid the cinema’s high-priced junk food aisle (your writer habitually goes to Woolworths for some snacks beforehand), then this mark may not seem like such a huge deal. But if you throw a family into the mix, a night out at the movies can now seem a little too exorbitant for many. According to several cinema executives, one of the central reasons for the ongoing price increases is Internet piracy. The Sydney Morning Herald reports (we recommend you click here for the full article):

    “[Village co-executive chairman Graham Burke] said piracy was “spreading like a virus” in Australia and if left unchecked would become a serious problem for his business. “Australia is probably the worst country in the world for pirating movies,” he said, labelling it “plain and simple theft”.”

    Now, to a certain extent it’s possible that Burke’s statement is accurate. Australia is one of the highest-pirating nations globally. Our love for great content, our large amounts of personal free time compared with residents of other countries and the lack of legal availability of much content locally (see the ongoing debate about watching Game of Thrones down under) have combined to ensure that Australians do pirate a lot of content, and it is indeed possible that many of us are choosing a cheap night at home watching that content rather than hitting the local cinema. Continue…

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