• IT Job Market, IT Jobs and Job Trends

    What is the Zander Report? At Project One we’re all about IT jobs, IT careers and IT consulting opportunities. Every day we read business and industry sources to keep the pulse of the IT job market, as well as the general management, marketing and technology trends that affect hiring.

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Wednesday, December 19th, 2018

From 6/30/09 eWEEK...
It's no secret Google makes more than 95 percent of its money from the ads paired with its world-leading search engine. While Google is doing a lot of things to stay ahead of others in search, the company would like to find and exploit new revenue streams.
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From 6/24/09 Human Trend Alert...
In his classic book, "Anatomy of an Illness", Norman Cousins describes his process of self-healing---when all his healthcare professionals had given up hope. Diagnosed with a rare form of arthritis, he said, "I made the joyous discovery that ten minutes of genuine belly laughter had an anesthetic effect and would give me at least two hours of pain-free sleep".

Now recent studies presented at the annual meeting of the American College of Sports Medicine confirm other healing properties of laughter. Not only can laughter reduce stress, which can damage the heart, but it can also lead to improved blood flow, which helps prevent high blood pressure.

In both studies, groups of healthy adults watched either a comedy or a documentary film. In one study, during the films, the researchers monitored subjects' carotid arterial blood flow---the main arteries that bring blood to the brain and face.

People who watched the comedy had greater amounts of blood moving through their arteries. Decreased arterial blood flow is often associated with high blood pressure and heart disease.

The second study found that watching comedies improved dilation (expansion) of the blood vessels); constricted blood vessels can be a cause of high blood pressure. "Not only did comedies improve vascular dilation, but watching a documentary about a depressing subject was actually harmful to the blood vessels," said Takashi Tarumi, lead researcher on the second study. "[Watching] these documentaries constricted blood vessels by about 18 percent".

In both studies, the positive effects of laughter lasted for 24 hours.

Add to this evidence, the results of a 2006 study conducted by the University of Maryland Medical Center. This study showed that laughter, along with a healthy sense of humor, is good for your heart. The Maryland researchers found that people with heart disease were 40 percent less likely to laugh in a variety of situations compared to people of the same age without heart disease.

Our forecast: we will continue to discover these types of low-tech, non-pharmaceutical ways to heal human bodies. Those discoveries, combined with high-tech advances in personalized medicine will improve life spans and quality of life.

From 6/09 CIO Magazine...
IT workers have their choice of many great U.S. cities for work and play (Atlanta, Chicago, Seattle), but what are the cities that you probably should avoid? Here's a very unscientific, highly subjective and unapologetically snarky list of the least favorite U.S. tech job locales.
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From 6/15/09 eWeek...
According to Gartner, despite widespread cutbacks in spending and new initiatives, IT security continues to hold its own in most enterprises, and is actually grabbing a larger piece of the IT pie.  Here's a list of the top 20 "coolest jobs" in Information Security.
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From 6/18/09 CIO Insight...
Understanding your obligations when laying off foreign technology workers.  It's sometimes a complicated legal landscape.
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From Global Knowledge Training LLC...
This paper reveals a list of the Top 10 Dying IT Skills along with explanations of why they made the list.  Included are:
1) Asynchronous Transfer Mode
2) Novell NetWare
3) Visual J++
4) Siebel
5) RAD/Extreme Programming
6) ColdFusion
7)Wireless Application Protocol
8) SNA
10) Cobol

There are some things in life, like good manners, which never go out of style, and there are other things, like clothing styles that fall in and out of fashion, but when an IT skill falls out of favor, it rarely ever comes back. Here's our list of 10 dying IT skills. If any of these skills are your main expertise, perhaps it's time to think about updating your skill set.


Is it dead or alive? This 40-year-old programming language often appears in lists of dying IT skills but it also appears in as many articles about organizations with legacy applications written in COBOL having a hard time seeking workers with COBOL skills. IBM cites statistics that 70% of the world's business data is still being processed by COBOL applications. But how many of these applications will remain in COBOL for the long term? Even IBM is pushing its customers to "build bridges" and use service-oriented architecture to "transform legacy applications and make them part of a fast and flexible IT architecture."


We're not suggesting the Internet is dead but with the proliferation of easy to use WYSIWYG HTML editors enabling non-techies to set up blogs and Web pages, Web site development is no longer a black art. Sure, there's still a need for professional Web developers (see the ColdFusion entry above for a discussion about Java and PHP skills) but a good grasp of HTML isn't the only skill required of a Web developer. Professional developers often have expertise in Java, AJAX, C++ and .Net, among other programming languages. HTML as a skill lost more than 40% of its value between 2001 and 2003, according to Foote Partners.

8. SNA

The introduction of IP and other Internet networking technologies into enterprises in the 1990s signaled the demise of IBM's proprietary Systems Network Architecture. According to Wikipedia, the protocol is still used extensively in banks and other financial transaction networks and so SNA skills continue to appear in job ads. But permanent positions seeking SNA skills are few and far between. ITJobsWatch.com noted that there were three opening for permanent jobs between February and April, compared to 43 during the same period last year. Meanwhile, companies such as HP offer consultants with experience in SNA and other legacy skills such as OpenVMS and Tru64 Unix for short-term assignments.

7. Siebel

Siebel is one skill that makes a recurring appearance in the Foote Partners' list of skills that have lost their luster.  Siebel was synonymous with customer relationship management in the late ‘90s and early 2000s, and the company dominated the market with a 45% share in 2002. Founded by Thomas Siebel, a former Oracle executive with no love lost for his past employer, Siebel competed aggressively with Oracle until 2006 when it was ultimately acquired by the database giant. Siebel's complex and expensive CRM software required experts to install and manage. That model lost out to the new breed of software-as-a-service (SaaS) packages from companies such as Salesforce.com that deliver comparable software over the Web. According to the U.K.'s ITJobsWatch.com site, Siebel experts command an average salary of GBP52,684 ($78,564), but that's a slide from GBP55,122 a year ago. Siebel is ranked 319 in the job research site's list of jobs in demand, compared to 310 in 2008.

6. RAD/Extreme Programming

Back in the late 1990s and early 2000s the rapid application development and extreme programming development philosophies resulted in quicker and more flexible programming that embraced the ever changing needs of customers during the development process. In XP, developers adapted to changing requirements at any point during the project life rather than attempting to define all requirements at the beginning. In RAD, developers embraced interactive use of structured techniques and prototyping to define users' requirements. The result was accelerated software development. Although the skills were consistently the highest paying in Foote Partners survey since 1999, they began to lose ground in 2003 due to the proliferation of offshore outsourcing of applications development.

5. ColdFusion

ColdFusion users rave that this Web programming language is easy to use and quick to jump into, but as many other independent software tools have experienced, it's hard to compete with products backed by expensive marketing campaigns from Microsoft and others. The language was originally released in 1995 by Allaire, which was acquired by Macromedia (which itself was purchased by Adobe). Today, it is superseded by Microsoft .Net, Java, PHP and the language of the moment: open source Ruby on Rails. A quick search of the Indeed.com job aggregator site returned 11,045 jobs seeking PHP skills compared to 2,027 CF jobs. Even Ruby on Rails, which is a much newer technology receiving a major boost when Apple packaged it with OS X v10.5 in 2007, returned 1,550 jobs openings on Indeed.com.

4. Wireless Application Protocol

Yes, people were able to browse the Internet in the late 1990s before Apple's iPhone. Web site operators would rewrite their content to the WAP's Wireless Markup Language, enabling users to access Web services such as email, stock results and news headlines using their cell phones and PDAs. WAP was not well received at the beginning because WAP sites were slow and lacked the richness of the Web. WAP has also seen different levels of uptake worldwide because of the different wireless regulations and standards around the world. WAP has since evolved and is a feature of Multimedia Messaging Service, but there are now a new generation of competing mobile Web browsers, including Opera Mobile and the iPhone's Safari browser.

3. Visual J++

Skills pay for Microsoft's version of Java declined 37.5% last year, according to the Foote Partners' study. The life of J++, which is available with Microsoft Visual Studio 6.0, was not a smooth one. Although Sun Microsystems licensed Java to Microsoft to develop J++, Microsoft failed to implement some features of the official Java standard while implementing other extensions of its own. Sun sued Microsoft for licensing violations in a legal wrangle that lasted three years. Microsoft eventually replaced J++ with Microsoft .Net.

2. Novell NetWare

Novell's network operating system was the de facto standard for LANs in the 1990s, running on more than 70% of enterprise networks. But Novell failed to compete with the marketing might of Microsoft. Novell tried to put up a good fight by acquiring WordPerfect to compete with Windows Office, but that move failed to ignite the market and Novell eventually sold WordPerfect to Corel in 1996. Novell certifications such as Certified Novell Engineer, Master Certified Novell Engineer, Certified Novell Certified Directory Engineer, and Novell Administrator were once hot certs in the industry, but now they are featured in Foote Partners' list of skills that decreased in value in 2008. Hiring managers want Windows Server and Linux skills instead.

1. Asynchronous Transfer Mode

ATM was popular in the late 1990s, particularly among carriers, as the answer to overworked frame relay for wide-area networking. It was considered more scalable than frame relay and offered inherent QoS support. It was also marketed as a LAN platform, but that was its weakness. According to Wikipedia, ATM failed to gain wide acceptance in the LAN where IP makes more sense for unifying voice and data on the network. Wikipedia notes that ATM will continue to be deployed by carriers that have committed to existing ATM deployments, but the technology is increasingly challenged by speed and traffic shaping requirements of converged voice and data networks. A growing number of carriers are now using Multi-Protocol Label Switching (MPLS), which integrates the label-switching capabilities of ATM with the packet orientation of IP. IT skills researcher Foote Partners listed ATM in its IT Skills and Certification Pay Index as a non-certified IT skill that has decreased in value in the last six month of 2008.

Learn More

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About the Author

Linda Leung is a senior IT journalist with 20 years' experience editing and writing news and features for online and print. She has extensive experience creating and launching news Web sites, including most recently independent communities for customers of Cisco Systems and Microsoft. As an experienced journalist in the U.S. and the U.K., she has led teams of journalists and industry experts to produce compelling content delivered via blogs, news, features and podcasts for all levels of technology executives.

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