Top 10 Best Technology Ideas. . . That Really Aren't - InformationWeek

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IoT
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Infrastructure // PC & Servers
Commentary
9/17/2009
06:32 PM
Fredric Paul
Fredric Paul
Commentary
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Top 10 Best Technology Ideas. . . That Really Aren't

At bMighty.com, we know that it's only too easy to get seduced by technology. A new innovation, a slick piece of hardware, a smart software feature, or seemingly fabulous application appears, and everyone jumps on the bandwagon. Sometimes, though, we wish we'd looked before we leaped.

At bMighty.com, we know that it's only too easy to get seduced by technology. A new innovation, a slick piece of hardware, a smart software feature, or seemingly fabulous application appears, and everyone jumps on the bandwagon.

Sometimes, though, we wish we'd looked before we leaped.This phenomenon isn't limited to actual technology products, of course. It can also apply to conventional technology wisdom that gets so ingrained that everyone assumes it must be right and good.

Most of the time, of course, these technology ideas are good. But sometimes, after a while we notice that cracks start to appear in that smooth facade. That maybe the technology isn't actually all that. That there's a major downside that folks hadn't quite fully considered before they got all breathless.

This can happen to anyone, and it's certainly happened to me. Because it's so easy to see the benefits of particular technologies, I sometimes forget to look at their limitations, hidden side effects, and other downsides.

No more.

Rather than continue to ignore the dark side of key technologies, though, I've decided to "celebrate" them with a brand new slide show:

Slide Show: Top 10 Best Technology Ideas. . . That Really Aren't

You can see them all in the bMighty slide show, but this take on the social networking craze will give you an idea of what I'm talking about:

Number 5. Social Networking For Employees

Social networking is a great way to market your business on the cheap. It can spread your brand and message far and wide with a minimal cash investment. And one of the most effective ways to leverage social networks is to encourage your employees to use them on behalf of your company.

Just be aware of the risks and entanglements when you mix the personal and professional sides of social networking. Employees don't stop being people when they log onto Facebook. And that's the problem. They'll be spreading your company's message right alongside less-professional "pokes" and racy party pix, not to mention the mundane status updates like "buying tuna fish for lunch" that dominate Twitter.

Even if you ask you own employees to be discreet, the overall networks are filled with folks who are decidedly less so.

And there's another point here. Is it really fair to ask your employees to moderate their behavior on social networks in order to promote the company agenda? Does the company own the employee's cyberspace persona, or does that stay with the individual?

Sure, it's good practice to check the online presence of a prospective employee, but once someone is part of the team, is it really any business of the company's what the person does on their own time?

These questions will eventually be worked out and new policies and standards agreed upon. But right now social networks are still the Wild West, and we're making up the rules as we go along.

It's not that social networking -- or our other 9 "honorees" -- are completely worthless, or evil, just that they have real flaws that shouldn't be ignored.

So check out the list, see what you think, and feel free to add your own flawed superstars!

See More bmighty Slide Shows

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