Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Computer Efficiency? Maybe, Maybe Not

The JSOnline's story of today paints a negative-toned picture of the Governor's "computer-server-efficiency" project, or whatever that was.

This story actually has a history which is more than 15 years old.

During the Thompson Administration, a blue-ribbon panel of IT executives (including a friend of mine) wrote a report severely criticizing the State of Wisconsin's IT "Fiefdoms." In essence, each major State department (DOT, DOA, DNR, etc.) were running their own mainframes, databases, and system configurations--and they were generally incompatible and horribly inefficient (DOA used IBM's database, DOT used a competitor's), etc.

It was a hell of a mess, but because of the "fiefdom" rules (not to mention the employee-union featherbedding) it wasn't about to change, no matter the desires of Klauser, Thompson, et al.

It is STILL a hell of a mess and it is clear that the only thing that's changed is the face of the Administration, and some of the technology.

So while Doyle & Co. should, perhaps, have found a "second opinion" about the effort, their direction was, on the whole, the right one.

But the Union (and the Fief-Lords) won this round.

Thus, State spending will continue apace. Taxpayers will contribute more.

That's the way it's supposed to be, right?

1 comment:

M.Z. Forrest said...

A chance to comment on something that is my core competence. This project should never have been green lighted. It would be the equivalent of GM saying lets close 5 plants and build 1 plant with the productive capacity of the prior 5. Better yet, let's produce the Sierra, Hummer, Aveo, Caprice, LaCross, Silverado 250, and Camaro in the same plant. Bigger is not always better, particularly when your operations are already among the top 10% or so in size individually already.