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Editorial pointers

Editorial Pointers

It's a long-standing e-commerce conundrum: knowing that consumers value a personalized online experience yet not knowing how to convince them to provide the information that makes it possible to give them that personalized touch. Alfred Kobsa, a computer science professor at the University of California, Irvine, tackles this quandary in this month's cover story. Privacy concerns continue to stifle consumers and stymie vendors. Kobsa introduces us to ongoing work from the emerging field of privacy-enhanced personalization, which aims to address privacy considerations when modeling personalized systems. By incorporating computer science, market research, public policy, economics, and law, this burgeoning field studies ways to control the use of personal information, as well as methods to build, strengthen, and keep consumer trust.

Ahmed Elfatatry contends there is a different philosophy underlying software design. He contrasts two such philosophies—the component and the service approach—and analyzes how each is best suited to address change. Jesper Simonsen describes a problem-mapping technique used by customers and vendors to interpret each other's business needs. Erickson and Siau outline approaches for developing a large-scale supply chain linear program using Microsoft Excel. And Wan et al. focus on the importance of classifying product comparison agents.

Assessing the value of IT investments has been argued (in these pages) for decades. But how does IT matter when it is a commodity input? Thatcher and Pingry focus on a growing body of work that constructs some of the missing links between IT investment and bottom-line impact. LeBlanc and Galbreth examine the various complexities found in different development methods, pointing out that such an effort helps determine which model is the best fit. Tse et al. discuss some of the problems software testers face in industrial projects where precise test oracles or test results may not be available. Enter TACCLE, an automated testing tool allowing software engineers to evaluate each individual class and then test among classes.

Wi-Fi providers, frustrated by roaming users tapping their networks and the possible civil and criminal liabilities they pose, look for ways to contain the uninvited traffic. Sipior and Ward examine this growing phenomenon and suggest ways to balance user and provider interests and rights. Sen et al. examine the Unified Enterprise Modeling Language initiative and its role in developing dynamic decision support. And Raghupathi presents a conceptual model for the development of IT governance that explores the many factors influencing effective policy.

Diane Crawford

©2007 ACM  0001-0782/07/0800  $5.00

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The Digital Library is published by the Association for Computing Machinery. Copyright © 2007 ACM, Inc.


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