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Which of the following is true of Amazon?
(a) Amazon initially adopted the domain of a non-profit organization.
(b)Amazon went seven whole years without turning a profit.
(c) Amazon has limited its product categories to only books.
(d) Amazon’s profitability has remained constant over the years and analysts continue to predict profits in the firm’s future.
(e) Amazon has centered its focus on quarterly results.
Amazon went seven whole years without turning a profit.
Amazon went seven whole years without turning a profit, losing over $3 billion during that time. The firms stock price had fallen from a high of $100 a share to below $6.
Which of the following strategies was followed by Jeff Bezos, Amazons founder?
He built e-commerce operations worldwide.
Amazon went seven whole years without turning a profit. But during those seven years and through to this day, steadfastly refused to concentrate on the quarterly results Wall Street frets over. Instead, Amazons founder has followed his best reckoning on where markets and technology were headed, postponing profit harvesting while expanding warehousing capacity, building e-commerce operations worldwide, growing one of the nets most widely-used cloud computing platforms, leading the pack in eBook readers, and developing the first credible threat to Apples dominant iPad in tablets.
Which of the following was a primary reason for Amazons decrease in profits of in 2012?
Massive investments crushed Amazon profits in 2012, with the firm dipping $39 million into the red. Yet stock performance during this period suggests Wall Street expects a huge upside.
True or False? Amazon is the largest online retailer in the world.
Identify the true statement about Amazon.
(a) Amazon made profits from the first year of its operation.
(b) Amazon is the second largest online retailer in the world.
(c) Amazon takes a relatively long-view with respect to investing in initiatives and its commitment to grow profitable businesses.
(d) Amazon’s profitability has remained constant over the years and analysts continue to predict profits for the firm’s future.
(e) Amazon focuses on the immediate harvesting of profits to gain a strategic advantage in the market.
Amazon takes a relatively long-view with respect to investing in initiatives and its commitment to grow profitable businesses.
The roughly seven-year timeline is a difficult one for public companies to maintain amid the pressure for consistent quarterly profits.
Which of the following is true?
(a) Amazon got its start selling games online.
(b) Amazon is no longer the world’s largest online retailer.
(c) The three pillars of Amazon’s business are large selection, convenience, and lower prices.
(d) Amazon’s strength lies in being always able to sell well directly to its customers.
(e) Amazon’s profitability has remained constant over the years and analysts continue to predict profits for the firm’s future.
The three pillars of Amazons business are large selection, convenience, and lower prices.
The three pillars reinforce one another and work together to create several additional assets for competitive advantage.
Amazons early warehousing was a shambles of inefficient, money-burning processes.
Amazon has always sold direct to consumers, but it didn't always do this well.
Which of the following is true of Amazon's fulfillment operations?
In order to automate profit-pushing hyper-efficiency, Amazon warehouses are powered by at least as much code as the firms website.
The firms larger warehouses are upwards of a quarter-mile in length and are packed with shelves stacked five or more rows high.
Which of the following is true of the packaging process at Amazon?
Items that produce the most sales volume are dropped in an area called 'mass land.'
Amazons items that produce the most sales volume aren't even stocked on proper shelves, instead pallets of goods are dropped in an area called mass land for fast pick-up that doesn't require scurrying through a maze of shelves.
When incoming inventory shows up at most retailers, those firms pay their suppliers right away.
When incoming inventory shows up at most retailers and this is certainly true for Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and Best Buy those firms don't pay their suppliers right away.
Amazon reports a negative cash conversion cycle which means it:
sells goods before it has to pay its suppliers.
Amazon alone among them consistently reports a negative cash conversion cycle it actually sells goods before it has to pay its suppliers. The goal for Amazon: keep inventory turns high (e.g. sell quickly), and pay suppliers later.
Identify the accurate statement about Amazon.
(a) Amazon’s items that produce the most sales volume are stocked on proper shelves.
(b) Amazon looks to make money directly from Kindle hardware sales.
(c) Amazon does not allow third-party sellers to use its website.
(d) The A/B testing used in Amazon is particularly difficult to run over the Internet on a firm’s website.
(e) Amazon employees are given the freedom to challenge even the most senior managers to all the way up to the founder.
Amazon employees are given the freedom to challenge even the most senior managers to all the way up to the founder.
At Amazon, data wins arguments, and the corporate culture gives employees the freedom to challenge even most senior managers all the way up to Bezos himself.
Amazon does not _____.
own an inventory of market place items
Sellers can warehouse and ship products themselves, or they can opt to use Amazons warehouses as part of the Fulfilled by Amazon program.
Which of the following statements is true about the Kindle?
The Kindle is delivered to a customer by linking it to his Amazon account.
While many refer to Kindle as an e-Reader, Kindle isn't as much about reading digital books as it is about putting a store in the hands of the firms over 150 million customers, allowing them to not only lap up goods from an increasingly massive digital trough, but also instantly linking those customers with the firms entire inventory of physical products.
_____ has allowed Amazon to radically drop the price of Kindle offerings, while increasing device functionality.
When introduced, the high-resolution color Kindle Fire offered a touch-screen tablet experience for half the price of the competing iPad and quickly became the second bestselling tablet on the market.
Kindle owners buy three to four times more books than they did prior to owning the device.
Amazon today sells more electronic books overall than their print counterparts.
Identify the accurate statement about Kindle.
(a) Various Kindle versions are regularly sold at or below costs.
(b) Amazon makes most of its money from the sale of Kindle hardware.
(c) Most Kindle titles are from publishers that sell only dead-tree versions.
(d) Using Amazon as a publisher means that your titles will only be available through Kindle.
(e) The Kindle delivered to customers cannot be linked to their Amazon accounts.
Various Kindle versions are regularly sold at or below costs.
Amazon doesn't look to make money directly from Kindle hardware sales. But once that cash register is in the hands of consumers, the sales ring up. As an always-on bookstore, the Kindle works pretty well.
Amazons shift from selling media atoms to selling media bits has led to its expansion into consumer cloud-based offerings.
Amazons shift from selling media atoms to selling media bits has led to its expansion into consumer cloud-based offerings that store and serve up digital content over the Internet. Its already been pointed out that the Kindle stores some purchased content off-device and can load a customers virtual bookshelf on demand, even if you delete purchases from your device.
Amazon Web Services:
has the potential of becoming as big as Amazons retail business.
AWS is just a single-digit percentage of Amazons overall revenue, but it is already a multi-billion revenue-generator and the firms fastest-growing business. Bezos has stated that he thinks AWS can eventually become as big as Amazons retail business.
Which of the following is true of Amazon Web Services (AWS)?
It allows anyone with a credit card to access industrial-strength, scalable computing resources.
AWS, or Amazon Web Services, allows firms, and really anyone with a credit card, to rent industrial-strength computing capacity on an as-needed basis. The best-known offerings are Amazons EC2 (Elastic Computing Cloud), which provides the virtual equivalent of physical computing hardware; and S3 (Simple Storage Service) providing Web-based storage.
The term _____ is used to refer to new Internet services that are targeted at harnessing the power of the Internet to empower users to collaborate, create resources, and share information in a distinctly different way.
Web 2.0 allows users to collaborate, create resources, and share information in a distinctly different way from the static Web sites and transaction-focused storefronts that characterized so many failures in the dot-com bubble.
_____ includes social media sites and open source software and involves the participation of users to provide the infrastructure and computational resources that enable a service.
Peer production includes social media sites, open source software, and peer-produced services, such as Skype and BitTorrent. The participation of these users provide the infrastructure and computational resources that enable the service.
Online journal entries, usually made in a reverse chronological order, are known as _____.
Blogs (short for Web logs) first emerged almost a decade ago as a medium for posting online diaries and are a category of social media sites. Blogs typically provide comment mechanisms where users can post feedback for authors and other readers.
_____ are links in a blog post that refer readers back to cited sources.
Trackbacks allow a blogger to see which and how many other bloggers are referring to their content. A "trackback" field is supported by most blog software. While it is not required to enter a trackback when citing another post, it is considered good "netiquette" to do so.
A Web site anyone can edit directly within a Web browser is known as a _______.
Wikis can be one of the speediest ways to collaboratively create content online. Many popular online wikis serve as a shared knowledge repository in some domain.
The roll back feature of a wiki page allows:
restoration of the wiki page to a prior version.
The roll back feature of wikis is useful for restoring earlier work in the event of a posting error, inaccuracy, or vandalism.
An editorial style that is free of bias and opinion is referred to as a(n):
neutral point of view.
Firms that overreach and try to influence an entry outside of Wikipedias mandated neutral point of view (NPOV), risk a backlash and public exposure. Version tracking means the wiki sees all.
Pioneered by Facebook but now adopted by most services, _____ provide a timely list of the activities of and public messages from people, groups, and organizations that an individual has an association with.
A(n) _____ is an online community that allows users to establish a personal profile and communicate with others.
The foundation of a social network is the user profile, but utility goes beyond the sort of listing found in a corporate information directory. Large public social networks include MySpace, Facebook, LinkedIn, and Googles Orkut.
While Facebook and MySpace are the most popular social networking sites in the U.S., Googles Orkut, Mixi, and Cyworld are amongst the largest sites in Brazil, Japan, and South Korea. According to the text, which of the following factors explains this preference for different social networks in different regions?
Network effect and cultural differences
Network effects and cultural differences result in one social network being favored over others in a particular culture or region.
Which of the following is one of the differences between Twitter and Facebook?
Twitter settings allow asymmetrical following, unlike Facebook.
Unlike Facebook, where most users must approve friends before they can see status updates, Twitters default setting allows for asymmetrical following (although it is possible to set up private Twitter accounts and to block followers).
_____ is a type of short-message posting service, often made via mobile device, designed to provide rapid notification to a users readership.
Microblogs are designed to provide rapid notification to their readership(e.g., a news flash, an update on ones activities), rather than detailed or in-depth comments. Twitter is the most popular microblogging service.
A hash tag allows Twitter users to:
organize tweets by prefixing keywords with the # symbol.
On Twitter, users can classify comments on a given topic using hash tags (keywords prefixed by the # or hash symbol), allowing others to quickly find related tweets (e.g., #iranelection, #mumbai, #swineflu).
_____ enables busy users to scan the headlines of newly available content and click on an items title to view items of interest, thus sparing them from having to continually visit sites to find out whats new.
Really simple syndication feeds
_____ are keyword-based classification systems created by user communities as they view and generate content.
The label folksonomy is a combination of folks and sonomy, meaning a people powered taxonomy.
______ is a tagging language that can be used to identify data fields made available for use by other applications.
Using APIs and XML, mash-up authors smoosh together seemingly unrelated data sources and services in new and novel ways.
_____ is the idea that a group of amateur individuals collectively have more insight than a single or small group of trained professionals.
Wisdom of crowds
The idea of crowd wisdom is at the heart of wikis, folksonomy tagging systems, and many other online efforts.
Which of the following online efforts has crowd wisdom as its underlying principle?
In the wisdom of the crowds concept, a group of individuals (often untrained amateurs), collectively has more insight than a single or small group of trained professionals. The idea of crowd wisdom is at the heart of wikis, folksonomy tagging systems, and many other online efforts.
Polling a diverse crowd and aggregating opinions, in order to form a forecast of an eventual outcome to leverage the wisdom of crowds, is known as _____.
a prediction market
The crowd isnt always right, but in many cases where topics are complex, problems are large, and outcomes are uncertain, a large, diverse group may bring collective insight to problem solving that one smart guy or a professional committee lacks. Prediction markets are used in such situations to leverage the wisdom of crowds.
The act of taking a job traditionally performed by a designated agent and outsourcing it to an undefined generally large group of people in the form of an open call is known as _____.
Crowdsourcing builds off the idea of the wisdom of crowds and allows for firms to harness great ideas in order to improve their business.
Netflix leveraged crowdsourcing by offering one million dollars to the first team to:
improve accuracy of its movie recommendations by 10 percent.
Netflix famously offered anonymous data to any takers, along with a one-million-dollar prize to the first team that could improve the accuracy of movie recommendations by 10 percent.
Which of the following statements is true regarding social media teams (S.M.A.R.T.s) in organizations?
Social media is a team sport that requires input from staffers throughout an organization.
The social media team needs support from public relations, marketing, customer support, HR, legal, IT and other groups, all while acknowledging that whats happening in the social media space is distinct from traditional roles in these disciplines.
The three Rs emphasized in the social media policy guidelines of most organizations relate to:
representation, responsibility, and respect.
The three Rs emphasized in the social media policy guidelines of most organizations relate to representation, responsibility, and respect. (1) Representation - Employees need clear and explicit guidelines on expectations for social media engagement, (2) Responsibility - Employees need to take responsibility for their online actions, and (3) Respect - Employees must honor differences and act ethically and responsibly when dealing with customers.
Engineering the posting of positive comments and reviews of a firms product and services on feedback forums is known as _____.
Astroturfing is the practice of lining comment and feedback forums with positive feedback. It also involves engineering posting of negative comments pertaining to a firms competitors.
_____ refers to a false online persona created to promote a particular point of view often in praise of a firm, product, or individual.
A(n) _____ to social media refers to an established online presence where customers can reach and interact with a firm.
_____ is an attempt to profit from a falling stock price.
Short sellers sell shares they dont own with an obligation of late repayment.
Many entrepreneurs accept start-up capital from _____, investor groups that provide funding in exchange for a stake in the firm and often, a degree of managerial control usually in the form of a voting seat, or seats on the firms board of directors.
A(n) _____ is the global mapping of users, organizations, and how they are connected.
A significant entry barrier to potential competitors is Facebook's huge:
There is a strong network effect to Facebook. People are attracted to the service because others they care about are more likely to be on Facebook than anywhere else online. And that large user base has also attracted all sorts of firms and organizations looking to connect with Facebooks masses. Without the network effect, Facebook wouldnt exist. And its because of the network effect that another smart kid in a dorm cant rip off Zuckerberg in any market where Facebook is the biggest fish. Even an exact copy of Facebook would be a virtual ghost town with no social graph.
The cost a consumer incurs when moving from one product to another is known as _____.
It can involve actual money spent, as well as investments in time, any data loss, and so forth.
Each time a user performs an activity on Facebook, the _____ blasts this information to all of the users friends.
While the authenticity and trust offered by Facebook was critical, offering News Feeds concentrated and released value from the social graph. With feeds, each time a user performs an activity in Facebook makes a friend, uploads a picture, joins a group the feed blasts this information to all their friends in a reverse chronological list that shows up right when they next log on.
Which of the following is perhaps the linchpin of Facebook's ability to strengthen and deliver user value from the social graph?
While the authenticity and trust offered by Facebook was critical, offering News Feeds concentrated and released value from the social graph.
Facebook News Feeds are arranged in:
reverse chronological order.
While the authenticity and trust offered by Facebook was critical, offering News Feeds concentrated and released value from the social graph. With feeds, each time a user performs an activity in Facebookmakes a friend, uploads a picture, joins a groupthe feed blasts this information to all of your friends. Get a new job, move to a new city, read a great article, have a pithy quotepost it to Facebookthe feed picks it up, and the world of your Facebook friends will get an update.
Sites that cannot be indexed by Google and other search engines are referred to as the _____.
Since Google can't index many of Facebook's profile pages, Facebook has the opportunity to develop a search engine that could go beyond the power of Google.
Programming hooks, or guidelines published by firms that tell other programs how to get a service to perform a task such as send or receive data, are known as _____.
application programming interfaces
Facebook published a set of application programming interfaces (APIs) that specified how programs could be written to run within and interact with Facebook, allowing any programmer to write applications that would run inside a users profile.
What feature of Facebook helps new applications gain visibility among users?
News Feed was a viral injection that spread the word each time an application was installed.
A new feature introduced by Facebook allows any developer to add a Facebook Like button to their site with just a few lines of HTML code. What is leveraged through this feature?
With just a few lines of HTML code, any developer could add a Facebook Like button to their site and take advantage of the social networks power of viral distribution.
Facebook has offered a system where Web site operators can choose to accept a users Facebook credentials for logging in. Users appreciate this feature because:
they can access content without having to create a new account.
Web sites like it because with the burden of signing up out of the way.
_____ occur(s) when others take advantage of a user or service without providing any sort of reciprocal benefits.
The free rider problem
Too much data portability presents a free rider problem where firms mooch off Facebook's infrastructure without offering much in return.
The term _____ refers to a collection of resources available for access over the Internet.
The Facebook cloud (the big group of connected servers that power the site) is scattered across multiple facilities, including server farms in San Francisco, Santa Clara, northern Virginia, Oregon, and North Carolina.
Open source software refers to:
free software whose source code is available for modification by anyone.
Open source software powers many sites like Facebook. Open source software is very often developed in a public, collaborative manner and it can be classified under crowdsourcing efforts.
_____ refer(s) to systems distributed throughout the Internet that help to improve the delivery speeds of Web pages and other media, typically by spreading access across multiple sites located closer to users.
Content delivery networks
Applications such as MafiaWars and FarmVille create _____ that add value to Facebook beyond what it already provides to users.
Facebook's platform allows the firm to further leverage the network effect. Developers creating applications create complementary benefits that have the potential to add value to Facebook beyond what the firm itself provides to its users.
What was the biggest problem with Beacon?
It was an opt out program.
Instead of "opt in." Facebook (and its partners) assumed users would agree to sharing data in their feeds.
From the privacy and user-content fiascos faced by Facebook, managers can learn that:
violation of public trust can lead to intense public scrutiny.
Managers take note: in the era of social media, your actions are now subject to immediate and sustained review. Violate the public trust and expect the equivalent of a high-powered investigative microscope examining your every move, and a very public airing of the findings.
The bulk of Facebooks revenue is earned through:
If Facebook is going to continue to give away its services for free, it needs to make money somehow. Right now the bulk of revenue comes from advertising. Fortunately for the firm, online advertising is hot.
_____ is the concern that an advertisement will run near offensive material, embarrassing an advertiser and degrading their brands.
Consider all of the questionable titles in social networking groups. Do advertisers really want their ads running alongside conversations that are racy, offensive, illegal, or that may even mock their products? This potential juxtaposition is a major problem with any site offering ads adjacent to free-form social media.
Engagement ads are a promotion technique in which:
consumers interact with an ad and that action is shared with friends.
Making ads more social allows advertisers to engage consumers to comment on content. RSVP to an event and invite others, or watch and comment on a video and see what their friends have to say.
The _____ phase of the Web is about connecting people with one another.
The first phase of the Internet was about:
giving people a way to find information.
While the first phase of the Internet was about giving people a way to find information, the second wave is about making connections online. The Web 2.0 movement may be big and impactful, but it remains to be seen if it is commercially viable in the long run.
True or False? Facebook has higher revenue per user than its rivals.
Facebook still lags well behind many of its rivals in terms of revenue per user.
_____ is the term used to represent the physical components of information technology.
Computer hardware can include the computer itself plus peripherals such as storage devices, input devices like the mouse and keyboard, output devices like monitors and printers, networking equipment, etc.
The term software is used to refer to:
the set of instructions that tells hardware what to do.
Without software, a PC would be a heap of silicon wrapped in wires encased in plastic and metal. But it is the software code that drives the limitless possibilities of information technology.
A(n) _____ is software that controls computer hardware and establishes standards for developing and executing applications.
An operating system is the collection of programs that control the hardware. Windows, Mac OS X, and Linux are operating systems.
User interface refers to:
the mechanism through which users interact with a computing device.
The user interface includes elements of the graphical user interface (GUI), such as windows, scroll bars, buttons, menus, and dialog boxes. It can also include other forms of interaction, such as touch screens, motion sensing controllers, or tactile devices used by the visually impaired.
Operating systems are designed to give programmers a common set of commands to consistently interact with the hardware. These commands make a programmers job easier by:
making it faster to write software while minimizing the possibility of errors in code.
Firmware is used to refer to:
software stored on nonvolatile memory chips.
Despite the seemingly permanent nature of firmware, many products allow for firmware to be upgraded online or by connecting to another device.
Products and services that allow for the development and integration of software products and other complementary goods are known as _____.
_____ refer(s) to applications that address the needs of multiple, simultaneous users in an organization or work group.
Most companies run various forms of enterprise software programs to keep track of their inventory, record sales, manage payments to suppliers, cut employee paychecks, and handle other functions.
_____ systems help a firm manage aspects of its value chain, from the flow of raw materials into the firm through delivery of finished products, and services at the point-of-consumption.
Supply chain management
_____ is a form of computing where systems in different locations communicate and collaborate to complete a task.
It can yield enormous efficiencies in speed, error reduction, and cost savings.
A(n) _____ is software that houses and serves business logic for use by multiple applications.
Individual Web services served up by the app server are programmed to perform different tasks: returning a calculation, accessing a database program, or even making a request to another server in another organization.
Organizations that have created a robust set of Web services around their processes and procedures are said to have a(n) _____.
Organizing systems like this, with separate applications in charge of client presentation, business logic, and database, makes systems more flexible.
_____ is a set of standards for exchanging messages containing formatted data between computer applications.
Electronic data interchange
EDI is most often used as a way to send the electronic equivalent of structured documents between different organizations.
A(n) _____ is an application for programmers, which includes a text editor, a debugger for sleuthing out errors, and other useful programming tools.
integrated development environment
Most professional programmers use an integrated development environment (IDE) to write their code. The IDE includes a text editor, a debugger for sleuthing out errors, and other useful programming tools.
True platform independence can be defined as:
the ability for developers to write code that can be run everywhere.
Java's platform independence the ability for developers to write once, run everywhere is its biggest selling point. Without Java, application developers have to write and compile software to execute natively by a specific operating system/microprocessor combination (e.g., Windows/Intel, Linux PowerPC, Mac/Intel, and Linux/Intel).
True or False? Java code that runs through the JVM interpreter is slower than the code compiled for the native operating system and processor that make up a platform.
Java is also not popular for desktop applications. Since Java isnt optimized to take advantage of interface elements specific to the Mac or Windows, most Java desktop applications look clunky and unnatural.
_____ are programming tools that are interpreted within their applications, rather than compiled to run directly by a microprocessor.
An organization is said to be _____ if its systems operate within required legal constraints, and industry and organizational obligations.
Firms need to constantly engage in a host of activities to support its system which may include providing training and end user support, collecting and relaying comments for system improvements, and auditing systems to ensure compliance.
The costs associated with the design, development, testing, implementation, documentation, training and maintenance of a software system are collectively referred to as:
total cost of ownership. F
irms spend 70 to 80 percent of their information systems (IS) budgets just to keep their systems running. The price tag and complexity of these tasks can push some managers to think of technology as being a cost sink rather than a strategic resource. Understanding total cost of ownership (TCO) is critical when making technology investment decisions.
A process-improvement approach that can assist in assessing the maturity, quality, and development of certain organizational business processes, and suggest steps for their improvement is known as:
capability maturity model integration.
Managers need to understand the complexity involved in their technology investments, and that achieving success rarely lies with the strength of the technology alone. Information systems organizations can work to implement procedures like those suggested by capability maturity model integration (CMMI) to improve the overall quality of their development practices.
Which of the following is considered to be the flagship open source software product?
Open source software is not only available for free, but also makes source code available for review and modification. The flagship OSS product is the Linux operating system, now available on all scales of computing devices from cell phones to supercomputers.
With open source software, anyone can look at the source code, change it, and even redistribute it, provided the modified software:
continues to remain open and free.
Open source software (OSS) is often described as free. While most OSS can be downloaded for free over the Internet, its also free as in liberated. The source code for OSS products is openly shared. Anyone can look at the source code, change it, and even redistribute it, provided the modified software continues to remain open and free.
In the context of open source software, the term hardened is used to describe:
technology products with particularly strong security features.
Many OSS vendors offer security focused (sometimes called hardened) versions of their products. These can include systems that monitor the integrity of an OSS distribution, checking file size and other indicators to be sure that code has not been modified and redistributed by bad guys whove added a back door, malicious routines, or other vulnerabilities.
_____ is the ability to either handle increasing workloads or to be easily expanded to manage workload increases.
Scalability allows a firm to scale from start-up to blue chip without having to significantly rewrite their code, potentially saving big on software development costs.
Which of the following is an open source software solution for the Unix operating system?
Many open source products come with the installation tools, support utilities, and full documentation that make them difficult to distinguish from traditional commercial efforts. Free BSD and Suns OpenSolaris are open source versions of the Unix operating system.
Which of the following is a customer relationship management software?
Many open source products come with the installation tools, support utilities, and full documentation that make them difficult to distinguish from traditional commercial efforts. Siebel is a customer relationship management software that competes with Salesforce.com and SugarCRM.
Oracle, a firm that sells commercial ERP and database products, provides Linux for free, selling high-margin Linux support contracts for as much as five-hundred-thousand dollars. This is an example of:
firms using OSS to wean customers away from competitors.
Many firms are trying to use OSS markets to drive a wedge between competitors and their customers. By giving out Linux for free, Oracle hopes to wean customers away from Microsofta firm that sells many products that compete head-to-head with Oracles offerings.
_____ is by far the most common database standard in use today, and is supported by many commercial and open source products.
SQL is a language used for creating and manipulating databases.
_____ refers to replacing computing resources, which could include hardware or software, with services provided over the Internet.
Cloud computing is making it more common for a firm to move software to run on someone else's hardware.
_____ is a form of cloud computing where a firm subscribes to a third-party software-replacing service that is delivered online.
Software as a service
With software as a service (SaaS), a firm subscribes to a third-party software-replacing service that is delivered online.
_____ are pools of computing resources that reside inside an organization and that can be served up for specific tasks as need arrives.
Some organizations are developing their own private clouds - pools of computing resources that reside inside an organization and that can be served up for specific tasks as need arrives.
Which of the following is true about SaaS?
Its associated costs are treated as variable operating expenses rather than fixed capital expenses.
Firms that adopt software as a service never actually buy a systems software and hardware, so these systems become a variable operating expense. This flexibility helps mitigate the financial risks associated with making a large capital investment in information systems.
The ____ between the customer and the vendor usually specify the levels of availability, serviceability, performance, operation, or other commitment requirements.
service level agreements
The service level agreement (SLA) is a negotiated agreement between the customer and the vendor. Vendors frequently sign an SLA with their customers to ensure a guaranteed uptime and define their ability to meet demand spikes.
The largest concerns regarding software as a service involve:
the high dependence a firm develops with its SaaS vendor.
If a traditional software company goes out of business, in most cases its customers can still go on using its products. But if its SaaS vendor goes under, they have got all of the customers data, and even if customers could get their data out, most organizations do not have the hardware, software, staff, or expertise to quickly absorb an abandoned function.
Which of the following observations regarding software as a service is true?
Radical changes in a SaaS systems functionality might result in unforeseen training costs.
Organizations adopting SaaS may find they are forced into adopting new versions. This fact is important because any radical changes in a SaaS systems user interface or system functionality might result in unforeseen training costs, or increase the chance that a user might make an error.
A cloud computing model in which a service provider makes computing resources, such as hardware and storage, along with infrastructure management that is available to a customer on an as-needed basis is known as:
The service provider typically charges for specific resource usage rather than a flat rate. In the past, similar efforts have been described as utility computing, hosting, or even time sharing.
_____ is a scalability solution that is usually provided as an overflow service, kicking in as needed.
Cloudbursting provides excess capacity during periods of spiking demand.
_____ are massive networks of computer servers running software to coordinate their collective use.
Server farms provide the infrastructure backbone to SaaS and hardware cloud efforts, as well as many large-scale Internet services.
True or False? The high costs of cloud computing raise the barriers to entry for technology firms.
By lowering the cost to access powerful systems and software, barriers to entry also decrease.
A server running _____ software can create smaller compartments in memory that each behave as a separate computer with its own operating system and resources.
Virtualization is a type of software that allows a single computer (or cluster of connected computers) to function as if it were several different computers, each running its own operating system and software. The most sophisticated of these tools also allows firms to combine servers into a huge pool of computing resources that can be allocated as needed.
Which software allows a single computer to function as if it were several different computers?
When a firm runs an instance of a PCs software on another machine and simply delivers the image of whats executing to the remote device, it is said to be operating on a(n) _____.
Virtual desktops allow a server to run what amounts to a copy of a PCOS, applications, and all and simply deliver an image of whats executing to a PC or other connected device. This allows firms to scale, back up, secure, and upgrade systems far more easily than if they had to maintain each individual PC.
Which of the following is not an option for firms relying on unique processes, procedures, or technologies that create vital, differentiating competitive advantage?
Purchasing package software from a vendor
Netflix and Dell both considered third-party software to manage inventory fulfillment. But in both cases, these firms felt that mastery of these functions was too critical to competitive advantage, so each firm developed proprietary systems unique to the circumstances of each firm.
Which of the following is a critical factor that a manager should consider while making a make, buy, or rent decision?
Reputation of software vendor
Factors that managers should consider when making a make, buy, or rent decision include the following: competitive advantage, security, legal and compliance issues, the organizations skill and available labor, cost, time, and vendor issues.
_____ is a term describing the extensive use of data, statistical and quantitative analysis,explanatory and predictive models, and fact-based management to drive decisions and actions.
_____ is a catchall term combining aspects of reporting, data exploration, and ad hoc queries, and sophisticated data modeling and analysis.
_____ is insight gained from experience and expertise.
When information, derived from data, can be combined with a managers knowledge, stronger decisions can be made.
A _____ is either a single table or a collection of related tables.
Databases can be very numerous in certain firms and can be used in functional areas such as sales or inventory.
Which of the following is by far the most common standard for expressing databases?
Databases organized in a format, where multiple tables are related based on common keys, are referred to as relational databases. There are many other database formats (sporting names like hierarchical, and object-oriented), but relational databases are far and away the most popular. And all SQL databases are relational databases.
A system that records business-related exchanges, such as a cash register sale, ATM withdrawal, or product return is known as a(n) _____.
transaction processing system
For most organizations that sell directly to their customers, transaction processing systems (TPS) represent a fountain of potentially insightful data. Every time a consumer uses a point-of-sale system, an ATM, or a service desk, theres a transaction occurring, representing an event that is likely worth tracking.
_____ are systems that provide rewards and usage incentives, typically in exchange for a method that provides a more detailed tracking and recording of customer activity.
The explosion in retailer cards is directly related to each firms desire to learn more about customers and to turn them into a more loyal and satisfied customer. In addition to enhancing data collection, loyalty cards can represent a significant switching cost.
_____ systems are often used to empower employees to track and record data at nearly every point of customer contact.
Customer relationship management
Firms increasingly set up systems to gather additional data beyond conventional purchase transactions or Web site monitoring. A well-designed CRM system can capture all events, such as requests for quotes, complaint e-mails, or goods return, for subsequent analysis or for triggering follow-up events.
_____ are firms that collect and resell data.
They include Acxiom, a $1.3 billion a year business that combines public source data on real estate, criminal records, and census reports, with private information from credit card applications, warranty card surveys, and magazine subscriptions.
The problem of incompatible legacy systems limiting firms ability to turn data into information is compounded by:
mergers and acquisitions.
The legacy systems problem can be made worse by mergers and acquisitions, especially if a firm depends on operational systems that are incompatible with its partner.
Which of the following can be a major roadblock to turning data into information, and inhibits firm agility, holding back operational and strategic initiatives?
Legacy systems are older information systems that are often incompatible with other systems, technologies, and ways of conducting business.
A problem limiting the turning of data into information is that most transactional databases are not set up to be:
simultaneously accessed for reporting and analysis.
If a manager asks a database that is already recording transactions to analyze historic sales trends showing the most and least profitable products over time, they may be asking a computer to look at thousands of transaction records, comparing results, and neatly ordering findings.
A(n) _____ is a database or databases focused on addressing the concerns of a specific problem.
A firm may not need to keep large amounts of historical point-of-sale or transaction data in its operational systems. However, it might want past data in its data mart so that managers can hunt for patterns and trends that occur over time.
A set of databases designed to support decision making in an organization is known as a(n):
Most organizations need to combine and reformat data from multiple sources. Firms typically need to create separate data repositories for their reporting and analytics work. Data warehouses may aggregate enormous amounts of data from many different operational systems.
_____ refers to identifying and retrieving relevant electronic information to support litigation efforts.
Data archiving is not just for analytics. Sometimes the law requires organizations to dive into their electronic records. E-discovery is something a firm should account for in its archiving and data storage plans.
_____ refers to a method of querying and reporting that takes data from standard relational databases, calculates and summarizes the data, and then stores the data in a special database.
Online analytical processing
Data used in online analytical processing (OLAP) reporting are stored in _____.
Data used in OLAP reporting is usually sourced from standard relational databases, but its calculated and summarized in advance, across multiple dimensions, with the data stored in a special database called a data cube.
_____ is computer software that seeks to reproduce or mimic human thought, decision making, or brain functions.
Artificial intelligence software
Data mining has its roots in a branch of computer science known as artificial intelligence (or AI). The goal of AI is create computer programs that are able to mimic or improve upon functions of the human brain.
A(n) ______ is a model building technique in which computers examine many potential solutions to a problem, iteratively modifying various mathematical models, and comparing the modified models to search for a best alternative.
Genetic algorithms have been use to build financial trading models, airport schedules, and designing parts for the international space station.
The ratio of a company's annual sales to its stock is known as the _____ ratio.
The worlds largest retailer, Wal-Mart, has an annual inventory turnover ratio of 8.5, which means that it sells the equivalent of its entire inventory roughly every six weeks. By comparison, Targets turnover ratio is 6.4, Sears is 3.4, and the average for U.S. retail is less than 2.
_____ and _____ are known as a retailers twin nightmares.
Too much inventory; too little inventory
Wal-Mart mines its mother lode of data to get its product mix right under all sorts of varying environmental conditions, protecting the firm from "a retailers twin nightmares: too much inventory, or not enough." For example, the firm stocks up on battery and bottled water supplies, in addition to beer and Pop-Tarts, in the days leading up to predicted storms.
Wal-Mart stopped sharing its data assets with information brokers like ACNielsen and Information resources because:
due to Wal-Marts huge scale, the agencies offered no extra value with their additional data.
Many retailers pool their data by sharing it with information brokers, such as Information Resources and ACNielsen, to provide more comprehensive insight on market behavior. But Wal-Marts scale is so big that the additional data provided by brokers does not add much value. Thus, it no longer makes sense to allow competitors access to what happens in its own huge chunk of retail sales.
By determining the customer lifetime value (CLV), firms can:
decide how much they should spend to ensure that customers keep coming back. work on their core competency and cut expenditure on loss making subsidiaries.
Customer lifetime value (CLV) represents the present value of the likely future income stream generated by an individual purchaser. Once this is known, a firm can get a sense of how much to spend to keep that customer coming back, size them up next to their peer group and if they fall below expectations, develop strategies to improve their spending.
_____ represents the present value of the likely future income stream generated by an individual purchaser.
Customer lifetime value
Once you know this, you can get a sense of how much you should spend to keep that customer coming back.
A publicly held company is said to be _____if its outstanding shares are purchased by an individual or by a small group of individuals, who wish to obtain complete ownership and control.
The benefits of being private is that with the distraction of quarterly earnings off the table, businesses can focus on their long-term viability and health.
The TJX example illustrates that:
security must be a top organizational priority.
The massive impact of the TJX breach should make it clear that security must be a top organizational priority.
Which of the following is a valid observation regarding information security?
Information security isn't just a technology problem.
Information security isn't just a technology problem; a host of personnel and procedural factors can create and amplify a firms vulnerability.
True or False? A flatter organization is less liable to security threats and their assets are inaccessible through technology.
Flatter organizations mean that lower-level employees may be able to use technology to reach deep into corporate assets amplifying threats from operator error, a renegade employee, or one compromised by external forces.
True or False? Hackers are unlikely to be prosecuted if they operate from countries without extradition treaties.
A hacker might deliberately hop through several systems to make his path difficult to follow, slowing cross-border legal pursuit or even thwarting prosecution if launched from nations without extradition agreements.
An attack in which a firms computer systems are flooded with thousands of seemingly legitimate requests, the sheer volume of which will slow or shut down the site, is known as:
distributed denial of service.
DDoS (distributed denial of service) attacks involve effectively shutting down Web sites by overwhelming them with a crushing load of seemingly legitimate requests sent simultaneously by thousands of machines.
_____ are hordes of surreptitiously infiltrated computers linked and controlled remotely, and are also known as zombie networks.
Botnets or zombie computers are networks of infiltrated and compromised machines controlled by a central command and are used for all sorts of nefarious activities.
True or False? Botnets as large as a few million zombie computers are electronically more powerful than the worlds fastest supercomputers.
Botnets have been discovered that are capable of sending out 100 billion spam messages a day, and botnets as large as 10 million zombies have been identified. Such systems theoretically control more computing power than the worlds fastest supercomputers.
_____ refer to protesters seeking to make a political point by leveraging technology tools, often through system infiltration, defacement, or damage.
Hacktivists are protesters seeking to make a political point by leveraging technology tools, often through system infiltration, defacement, or damage. They target firms, Web sites, or even users as a protest measure.
True or False? Law enforcement agencies are increasingly receiving more support, funding, and training in dealing with computer crime.
Law enforcement agencies dealing with computer crime are increasingly outnumbered, outskilled, and underfunded. Many agencies are staffed with technically weak personnel who were trained in a prior eras crime fighting techniques. Governments can rarely match the pay scale and stock bonuses offered by private industry.
Con games that trick employees into revealing information or performing other tasks that compromise a firm are known as _____ in security circles.
Cons executed through technology and intended to leverage the reputation of a trusted firm or friend to trick the victim into performing an action or revealing information constitute:
Many have masqueraded as a security alert from a bank or e-commerce site, a message from an employer, or even a notice from the government. Sophisticated con artists will lift logos, mimic standard layouts, and copy official language from legitimate Web sites or prior e-mails.
_____ is a term used in security to refer to forging or disguising the origin or identity.
Its possible that the e-mail address has been spoofed (faked) or that it was sent via a colleagues compromised account.
Exploits that attempt to infiltrate a computer system by masquerading as something that they are not are called:
Trojans are exploits that, like the mythical Trojan Horse, try to sneak in by masquerading as something they're not. The payload is released when the user is duped into downloading and installing the malware cargo, oftentimes via phishing exploits.
The key difference between viruses and worms is that:
worms do not need an executable to spread, unlike viruses.
Viruses infect other software and files and require an executable (running program) to spread, attaching to other executables. Worms exploit security vulnerability to automatically spread, but do not need an executable.
True or False? A screen capture is a type of software that screens for malware and prevents it from spreading.
A screen capture is a variant of the keylogger approach that records the pixels that appear on a users screen for later playback in hopes of identifying proprietary information.
An exploit in which hackers target security vulnerabilities caused by software developers not validating user input is called the:
SQL injection technique.
Some exploits, like the SQL injection technique, directly target poorly designed and programmed Web sites, zeroing in on a sloppy programming practice where software developers don't validate user input.
Which of the following statements regarding security frameworks and guidelines is true?
Conforming to security frameworks does not guarantee security.
Compliance does not equal security. While firms would like to make sure they are doing everything in their power not to get sued, this is not the goal. The goal is taking all appropriate measures to ensure that the firm is secure for its customers, employees, shareholders, and others.
A security tool that is deployed by firms as a phony target to lure or distract attackers and gain information about them is known as a:
Some firms deploy honeypots-bogus offerings meant to distract attackers. If attackers take the honeypot bait, firms may gain an opportunity to recognize the hackers exploits, identify the IP address of intrusion, and take action to block further attacks and alert authorities.
_____ are highly restrictive programs that permit communication only with approved entities in an approved manner.
Whitelists are highly restrictive security tools that permit communication only with approved entities like specific IP addresses, products, and Internet domains in an approved manner.
Malware _____ are a sort of electronic fingerprint often used to recognize malicious code.
Recent malware has become polymorphic, meaning different versions are created and deployed in a way that their signature is slightly altered.