from DSSResources.com

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                          DSS News
                       by D. J. Power
              January 20, 2002 -- Vol. 3, No. 2
         A Bi-Weekly Publication of DSSResources.COM

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       Check the Vendor Directory at DSSResources.COM
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Featured:

* DSS Wisdom
* Ask Dan! - What are Decision Support technology trends?
* DSS News Stories

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This newsletter has more than 750 subscribers from 
50 countries. Please forward this newsletter to people interested in 
Decision Support Systems or suggest they visit DSSResources.COM.

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DSS Wisdom

According to Herbert Simon in a 1986 report, "There are no more 
promising or important targets for basic scientific research than 
understanding how human minds, with and without the help of computers, 
solve problems and make decisions effectively, and improving our 
problem-solving and decision-making capabilities."

Simon, Herbert A. "Decision Making and Problem Solving." Research 
Briefings 1986: Report of the Research Briefing Panel on Decision Making 
and Problem Solving. Washington, DC: National Academy Press, 1986 
(http://dieoff.org/page163.htm).

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 Call for Papers: Decision Support Systems mini-track at
      AMCIS 2002-Dallas. Deadline 03/15/2002. 

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Ask Dan!

What are Decision Support technology trends?

At the turn of the year, it is common to think about trends and future 
developments related to many topics. The pace of technology change is 
speeding up and the expectations for DSS in companies continue to expand 
and grow. Chuck Russell posted a question on the DSSResources.COM 
Bulletin Board about trends that may be driving companies to do more 
modeling in support of decisions. Many of those trends deal with 
managing risk and improving quantitative analyses, but improved 
technologies should also drive companies to do more modeling. Recently, 
Alexandre Gachet updated me on his research on distributed cooperative 
DSS using Java based on the Jini technology. Hoda Hafez also wrote 
recently asking about knowledge management technologies. So, what seem 
to be the trends associated with information technology that may have a 
major impact on the design and development of DSS? What are the DSS 
technology trends?

Portals, hand-helds, mobile computing, and visualization tools are 
driving Decision Support updates and innovations.

Object-oriented development tools, especially Java, seem to hold much 
promise for building new model-driven DSS.  Distributed and cooperative 
DSS can both be built using such tools.

Network technologies are mission-critical in most companies. Computing 
and network technologies have become more integrated and more powerful. 
The speed and capacity of networks is increasing. Bandwidth expansion 
can support interactive video and real-time decision support anywhere in 
the world.  

Open source software may impact some DSS development tools. With access 
to source code programmers can read, redistribute, and modify the 
software; advocates of open source software feel the software will 
evolve faster. For example, Linux is becoming an important operating 
system for Web servers in corporations.

Visualization technologies are more powerful than at any time in the 
past.  New software helps users visualize almost anything they can 
imagine in a realistic, manipulatable format. Visualization tools can 
help pilots simulate flights and help managers "try" new products.

The World Wide Web supports e-business including internal and external 
global communications, decision making, and collaboration for managers. 
Also, the Web can help managers gather, manage, share, and use 
information. The Web is the platform for managing documents and 
"knowledge".

Handheld computing is gaining greater acceptance, and the use of pocket 
PCs integrated with cell phones by managers and other employees will 
increase. Wireless Web devices are expected to outnumber wired devices 
in the next few years. Pocket PCs support distributed access to 
data-driven DSS, expanded communications-driven DSS and distributed 
decision making. Mobile computing systems extend the reach of an 
enterprise-wide DSS.

Large data storage systems and multiprocessing computers have removed 
the constraints on what can be stored and how much data can be stored.  
Data storage is faster and it is easier to organize and backup data of 
all types. Data can be kept forever in a form that can be sorted, 
analyzed and processed.  

These are the major Decision Support technology trends. The list is a 
bit dated even as it is written. Seizing opportunities to build 
innovative DSS involves continuously monitoring technology trends. 

Please send me your comments and questions on these and other trends 
related to DSS.

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DSS News Stories: January 4 to January 15

01/15/2002 State of Minnesota standardizes on BroadVision’s enterprise 
self-service applications for its e-government portal initiatives. 

01/15/2002 BlackBerry End-to-End Security and 'Always On, Always 
Connected' Email Earned RIM 20+ Industry Awards in 2001.

01/15/2002 More than 100 companies use RightAnswers in the fourth 
quarter of 2002.

01/14/2002 IBM and Steelcase announce global initiative to design office 
of the future.

01/09/2002 US Air Force Flies High by Standardizing on the Brio 
Performance Suite.

01/08/2002 Pharmaceutical company AstraZeneca gains market insights with 
MicroStrategy Business Intelligence.

01/07/2002 Cognos® delivers $1 million ROI in first year to Trimac 
Corporation.

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