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John Olson

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Top Stories by John Olson

At work, Lisa takes advantage of her employer's dedicated T-3 to quickly access live NASDAQ quotes via a Java applet stock ticker. She spends each day alternating between development work and day trading. Soon to be rich, she dreams of early retirement and a life filled with leisure activities and day trading at home. Back at home her lack of patience and 56K connection make day trading a painfully slow torture. Java and 56K aren't meant to be together. Unfortunately, most of the 50 million regular Internet users worldwide are ecstatic if they can even achieve 56K. High-speed connectivity is common to businesses but is out of financial reach of the average home-based Internet user. To be successful, consumer-targeted Web sites have to provide content quickly, because consumers won't wait. So while businesses enjoy IP-delivered, feature-rich Java applications and ap... (more)

A Nose For The Essentials, Interview with Yakov Werde

Though I spend most of my time consulting on software systems, I also have the pleasure of teaching a variety of courses on Sybase Tools. As a Certified Sybase Instructor, I was able to attend a recent conference in Santa Fe that Sybase put on for its instructors. While there, I sat in on a Java course taught by Yakov Werde. Yakov is a very talented teacher, skilled in communication and humor. It's a good mix. I always enjoy the opportunity to learn from him. Recently, we had the opportunity to speak about his job and get a small glimpse of Yakov after hours. Olson: Briefly tel... (more)

Broadband is Coming?

Last year I wrote that as broadband became the standard for Internet access, important inhibitors to WWW offerings and use would be removed, resulting in a dramatic change in the WWW itself. I said that Web sites would become more powerful and feature-rich because speed would no longer be an overwhelming limiting feature. We were on the cusp of a dramatic change, but instead of its occurring quickly, over two to three years, the change has slowed and it seems that acceptance of broadband could take a decade or more. Rather than being a quick revolution, it's turning out to be a s... (more)

What's Coming Up in This New Year

Wow, 2000! I remember back in the '70s when I was a teenager thinking about the year 2000. It was so far away. I was sure the world would be radically different, plus I'd be such an old man. Well, I'm older, though not yet an old man. And the world has changed, but not as drastically as sci-fi movies and shows had led me to believe. Technology has made incredible advances. One dramatic example is that the U.S. government-sponsored Human Genome Project expects to finish mapping the entire human gene structures by the end of the year. Not too long ago that task was considered impos... (more)

Repeat After Me: 'I Am a Teacher'

Repeat after me: "I am a teacher. I am in the business of teaching." Okay, you said it, but do you believe it? You may not think of yourself in those terms, but it's the truth. We are all teachers, in our personal lives and in our jobs. We, you and me, are in the business of teaching. Are you doing your job? As a parent, it's obvious that my role is to teach. If I don't teach my 7-year-old boy, then his little brain will continue being a mush brain even into his teens. I have to actively and purposefully teach him about life. The benefits of doing so are obvious. As soon as I po... (more)