Technology news May 2007

Technology

Microsoft announces new era in business intelligence...again

Earlier this month, Microsoft hosted a conference on business intelligence in Seattle to reinforce the message that it is going to provoke a major shake-out."Microsoft is charting a course to transform the BI marketplace as we know it," claimed Jeff Raikes, president of the Microsoft Business Division."By fundamentally changing the economic model for BI and delivering unprecedented ease of use, we’re enabling the broadest deployment of BI possible so employees can better contribute to a company’s overall business performance."There wasn't much new about that particular statement,
Technology

PKF Texas blog wins more awards

Pannell Kerr Forster of Texas, P.C. (PKF Texas) has won two American Marketing Association (AMA) Crystal awards for their blog,
Technology

SumIf's little known function

SumIf is a great function that a lot of Excel users don’t know up about. Basically it combines two very popular functions - the Sum function and the IF Function. SumIf tests specified cells and if those cells meet certain conditions or “criteria” then selected cells are summed up. Think of the possibilities: You may wish to sum up receipts by different lockboxes or sum up the value of past-due invoices. Or you may just want to add up negative numbers in a column quickly or add up the returns or overtime for a particular day. I am using a very simple example to illustrate SumIf.
Technology

World's thinnest notebook?

Business Week reports that when Intel asked designers to build a better laptop, its instructions were simple, really. The machine has to be fashionable, able to connect to all manner of wireless networks, and full of the latest, fastest computing capabilities. Oh yes, and make it as thin as Motorola's Razr. Its own engineers in conjunction with Ziba Design in Portland, Ore., rose to the challenge.
Technology

Microsoft Office converter to disinfect virus files

Microsoft programmers are working on a file conversion program that will disable infected Office 2003 files by converting them into the new, XML-based Office 2007 formats, AccountingWEB's John Stokdyk reports.Called the Microsoft Office Isolated Conversion Environment (MOICE), the converter will be available in a few weeks time and was previewed by Microsoft security technologist David LeBlanc.Malformed Office document files are becoming an increasingly popular means for gaining control of remote PCs - for example to build so-called spam "botnets".
Technology

Is that the office in your pocket or…?

Remote phone, e-mail and even VoIP technology have progressed to the point that techno nerds aren’t the only ones carrying cutting-edge devices. Are you one of the growing number of executives enjoying the convenience of greater portability? Or are you sitting in meetings, or lunches, confused by all the noises coming from your co-worker’s pockets?
Technology

IRS rules hospitals may assist physicians with healthcare IT

Not-for-profit hospitals may provide financial assistance to staff physicians to “acquire and implement software that is used predominantly for creating, maintaining, transmitting or receiving electronic health records (EHRs) for their patients,” according to a directive issued by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) last week. The provision of this IT assistance will not violate section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code, the agency concluded in a two-page memo.
Technology

2007 Sets Record for E-files, Direct Deposits

The recently completed 2007 tax filing season set a number of electronic records, highlighted by over 76 million electronically-filed individual tax returns and more than 140 million visits to IRS.gov, the Internal Revenue Service said.“E-file and our other electronic services helped us deliver a strong filing season for the nation’s taxpayers,” said IRS Acting Commissioner Kevin M. Brown. “Again this year, millions of additional taxpayers gave up paper tax returns to file electronically.
Technology

Sage Software Restructuring

Sage Software announced an organizational restructure to better address its customers by aligning business units more closely to its customer segments.The company's new Business Management Division brings its accounting, ERP, CRM, and related businesses into a single organization to serve the broad needs of small and mid-sized businesses (SMBs) with core business management solutions. Nina Smith, currently chief marketing officer (CMO) for Sage Software, will head up this division as president.
Practice Management

J.H. Cohn Appoints CIO

J.H. Cohn LLP has appointed Robert Grosberg to the position of chief information officer. As CIO of J.H. Cohn, Robert leads the Firm’s efforts to implement business solutions through reliable and efficient technology. “Robert’s appointment solidifies our commitment to leveraging technology to the fullest so we can best serve our clients, and build upon our solid technology infrastructure to support our professionals and staff,” said Kenneth J. Kanter, partner and chair of J.H. Cohn’s Technology and Operations Steering Committee.
Technology

Microsoft Releases New Patches

Microsoft released fixes for 19 security flaws in several of its products, including the new Internet Explorer 7, Office 2007 and Exchange 2007. The company published seven security bulletins, all tagged "critical," its highest security rating. Critical vulnerabilities typically allow an attacker to gain full control of an affected system with very little, if any, action by the user.
Technology

White Paper: IT Compliance Benchmarks

Executive SummaryKey FindingsFrequency of audits, time allocated to compliance by IT and IT spending distinguish leaders from laggards in achieving compliance. The three major drivers of performance results in achieving IT Compliance are:1. Frequency of internal audit and IT security monitoring. Leaders audit for compliance on a continuous basis, at least once a month.2. Time allocated by IT to compliance: Leaders are spending 50 percent more time on compliance than laggards.3. Spending on IT security.
Technology

AICPA Offers Online SAS Toolkit

The Private Companies Practice Section (PCPS) of the American Institute of CPAs has developed an online toolkit designed to help members understand and implement Statement on Auditing Standards (SAS) No. 112. SAS No. 112, "Communication of Internal Control Related Matters Identified in an Audit," is effective for audits performed on or after Dec. 15, 2006. The complete toolkit, accessible to PCPS Member Firms, is available at www.pcps.org.