Will IT spending take further hits in 2009? An announcement today from the US-based mattress maker Select Comfort could be a sign of tech spending on the chopping board – but it also could just be another case of an enterprise software adoption gone out of control.
Select Comfort has announced a new cost-cutting scheme that includes a complete freeze of its SAP Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) software roll-out, as well as laying off approximately 120 workers.
The company blames the need for reductions on “further slowing of sales after Thanksgiving and in anticipation of continued macro-economic challenges in 2009.” The move is expected to save $15m annually beginning in the first quarter next year, the company said.
But according to letters sent to the Select Comfort’s board of directors by a major shareholder, New York-based investment firm Clinton Group, the SAP implementation had been a burden on the company for some time. The filings were first spotted by Computerworld.
A Clinton Group letter filed by the US Securities and Exchange Comission dated March 6, 2008 claims the SAP system installation “is behind schedule and is significantly over running its original cost estimates”
The investment firm estimated Select Comfort had already spent $12m on the SAP implementation and expected to spend another $8m in 2008.
Twenty mil for a piece of software for a mattress maker? Who thought that was a good idea? Has anybody ever seen a working SAP implementation come in on time and under budget? Scrap that, has anybody ever seen a working implementation?
SAP is a typical “if the disease doesn’t kill you, the cure will” piece of software…
Last year, NORAD’s Santa tracking center answered 94,000 calls and responded to 10,000 e-mails. About 10.6 million visitors went to the Web site, which can be viewed in English, Spanish, French, Italian, German, Japanese and Chinese.
NORAD’s holiday tradition can by traced to 1955, when a Colorado Springs newspaper printed a Sears, Roebuck & Co. ad telling children of a phone number to talk to Santa. The number was one digit off, and the first child to get through reached the Continental Air Defense Command, NORAD’s predecessor.
Col. Harry W. Shoup answered.
Shoup’s daughter, Terri Van Keuren, said her dad, now 91, was surprised to hear that the little voice on the other end thought he was Santa.
“Dad thought, `What the heck? This must be some kind of code,’” said Van Keuren, 59.
Shoup, described by his daughter as “just a nut about Christmas,” didn’t want to break the boy’s heart, so he sounded a booming “Ho, ho, ho!” and pretended to be Santa Claus.
Enough calls followed that Shoup assigned an officer to answer them while the problem was fixed. But Shoup and the staff he was directing to “locate” Santa on radar ended up embracing the idea. NORAD picked up the tradition when it was formed 50 years ago.
“I never said the Taliban was eliminated.” — Bush 12.15.08
…“The Taliban’s ability to brutalize the Afghan people and to harbor and support terrorists has been virtually eliminated.” — Bush 9/02
…“With the Taliban eliminated and al-Qaida badly damaged, we have moved into the second stage of our war on terror.” — Bush April 2002
…“And as a result of the United States military, Taliban no longer is in existence. And the people of Afghanistan are now free.” — Bush 9/04
Watch as grownups – and government officials – discuss lizard people and the FSM for 9 minutes. it’s a fine moment in American democracy. remember, there is a senate seat on the line.
“I divide my officers into four classes; the clever, the lazy, the industrious, and the stupid. Each officer possesses at least two of these qualities. Those who are clever and industrious are fitted for the highest staff appointments. Use can be made of those who are stupid and lazy. The man who is clever and lazy however is for the very highest command; he has the temperament and nerves to deal with all situations. But whoever is stupid and industrious is a menace and must be removed immediately!”
Around noon on Tuesday, Dec. 2, [Demarkus] Peeples was watching TV at home when he heard a knock at the front door. When he looked out the door’s top window, he saw a group of men standing on his porch wearing jeans and T-shirts, a couple of them looking a little ratty. To get a better look, he went to a side window and peeked through the drawn blinds. “Honestly, they looked like they were transients,” he said.
The men, it ends up, were undercover narcotics officers who were there on a complaint about drug activity at that address—Peeples was later told that it had to do with a “chemical smell.” Peeples said the men—he estimates there were six—never announced who they were.
Peeples waited until they circled back to the front of his house, at which point he opened his back door to investigate. That’s when his dog, a three-year-old Staffy named Eygpt ran out. Normally, that wouldn’t be a problem, except that one of the police officers had left the backyard gate open. The dog ran out, and down Peeple’s driveway toward the officers, at which point they shot it three times. Even the police concede the dog never attacked. They shot it as it was running toward them.
It only gets worse from there. The police then arrested Peeples on the charge of assault with a deadly weapon—the weapon being his now dying dog. Peeples says they then euthanized his dog, despite his explicit instructions not to.
Apple’s broadening of App Store acceptances has opened the door to a number of new novelty applications including InfoMedia’s iFart Mobile [App Store]. The $0.99 humor application has rapidly seen success and has rocketed up to the #1 App Sales slot.
The number one seller in the App Store on Dec 22 was a $0.99 application that makes fart noises, which means $9198 income for the developer on that day.
I guess I picked the wrong line of work…
The latest case of zero-tolerance at the public schools has a 10-year-old student sadder and wiser, and facing expulsion and long-term juvenile detention. And it has his mother worried that his punishment has already been harsher than the offense demands.
“I think I shouldn’t have brought a gun to school in the first place,” said the student, Alandis Ford, sitting at home Thursday night with his mother, Tosha Ford, at his side.
Alandis’ gun was a “cap gun,” a toy cowboy six-shooter that his mother bought for him.
“We got it from Wal-Mart for $5.96,” Tosha Ford said, “in the toy section right next to the cowboy hats. That’s what he wanted because it was just like the ones he was studying for the Civil War” in his fifth-grade class at Fairview Elementary School.
“It kind of reminded me of the [soldiers'] guns that I was studying,” Alandis said, “because I had brought pictures home of the gun and stuff, and that gun that I had reminded me of the revolver” depicted in his textbook.
Tosha said that Wednesday afternoon, after school, “six police officers actually rushed into the door” of their home. “He [Alandis] opened the door because they’re police. And then they just kind of pushed him out of the way, and asked him, ‘Well where’s the gun, where’s the real gun?’ And they called him a liar… they booked him, and they fingerprinted him.”
Alandis was charged with possessing a weapon on school property and with terroristic acts and threats.
Charged for terrorism? Wow, do I feel safer right now!
American Express Co., the credit- card company that’s converting into a bank, will get $3.39 billion of fresh capital from the U.S. rescue fund to ensure its survival as the recession heads into a second year.
In a just world, they’d have to pay a 22.99% interest rate on this bailout money, compounded monthly, and with a $3 million late fee.