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ITM301 – Principles of Information Systems in Business & Organizations

Summary description of its structure and purpose

PCMag delivers reliable, labs-based comparative reviews of computing and Internet products to highly engaged technology buyers. PCMag is also in the business of defining technology for e-business users.  The website is set up in a layering concept. There seems to be a multitude of ways of getting to information easily.  What I mean to say is there’s not just one path to the information.  Its home page is set so if you go looking for just one thing, you come out with a ton of information because it’s all so easy to get to but it’s also intertwined with advertisers that are of the same venue, for example, Dell computers.

The website’s overall “look and feel” and apparent target audience

My first impression of the website was of it has a very masculine and contemporary feel.  I also felt beset by what seemed to be “commercials”.  After I browsed around for awhile, I realized that there weren’t so much ads, but reviews and information about products for consumers.  In fact, the targeted audience focus appears to be geared towards anyone from the computer enthusiasts to the professionals; from the intermediate to the advanced level.

What you find useful about this site?

There are many useful links on this website.  I was very impressed with the amount of useable information presented here.  To draw in your basic homeowner consumers, they provide tabs for price comparisons, solutions and blogs.  In particular, I found the price comparison section very beneficial and easy to use.  It provided editorial and consumer reviews along with numerous websites that sell the product and what their prices are.  I also found the instruction videos and buying guides very helpful.  Once they’ve drawn you in with those tools, it was easy to start browsing around in other areas.  There were an abundance of downloads to make your PC more efficient or secure.  News articles were also available to keep you update to date on the latest technology and information goings on.  Finally, the most impressive area I found was the White Papers section.  This really took this website to a whole new level for me with regards to information.

This area is definitely aimed at the more advanced computer user and the business owners.  The amount and types of categories alone were astounding.  For example, data management, records management, knowledge management, business process management just to name a few.  There are 115 White Papers in Knowledge Management alone.  There were many interesting papers but I found two of particular interest.  The first one was On the Hotseat: How Your Peers Are Tackling the Questions That Matter Now.   It uncovers issues businesses are experiencing with their software, offering solutions to simplify processes and drive growth.  The second paper was Beyond Converged Networks: Driving User Productivity Through Unified Communication and Collaboration.  This paper reviews how by providing users with a single, integrated experience across both business applications and communications and collaboration tools, organizations can cultivate more dynamic and flexible business systems.  I could go on but you should check it for yourself.

What links I viewed or intend to follow up

As I stated earlier, this website provide many useful tools and links.  To cover all the areas I went into would go beyond the limitations of this paper.  Some of the links I intend to use in the future would be Identity Theft: It’s Out of Your Hands.  Protect your Identity.  I don’t think anyone can ever be too careful with their identity, whether it’s an individual or a business.  I also need to go back and take a closer look at the downloads available.  With just a quick glance, there seems to be some very favorable tools to keep my machine running more efficient.  Who couldn’t use that kind of assistance?

Any other things about the site that I find interesting?

Ask Neil is a subsection under Solutions you can click on for interesting troubleshooting tidbits regarding software issues.  He answered questions about Excel, Powerpoint and Outlook.  I found it interesting because some of the topics he talked about might not be a problem you are having but when you read the question you think, “I’d like to know the answer to that!”  For example:  Want to remove the Standby option from Windows XP shutdown?  Or, What’s the significance of the little blue folders in Windows Explorer in Vista?  I found the information useful because it’s was information I wouldn’t think or know to ask about.

What’s the bottom-line evaluation of its value to me?

Overall, I give it an A+.  I am not a computer, techy, person by any means so this review was not something I was looking forward too.  However, I found myself becoming more and more interested in the various aspects of information available.  Once I started looking around, I had a hard time stopping.  It was extremely easy to navigate through and most of the information was relevant and on target.  I’ll definitely be adding this to my favorites list.

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