Monday, May 31, 2010

The Problem with IT: People think its simple

After some discussion with a few friends, I have reached the conclusion on why there's a problem plaguing the IT industry here. The problem is that people in general think that IT is simple.

I need a website. Fire up Microsoft Word and save it as HTML. Cheap right? By the way, add in some dynamic content while you're at it. Database? What's that? I just want a static website with some portions that is dynamic. Oh yes, before I forget, I want some fancy graphics that will jump out at you whenever I mouse-over a certain area. Flash? What's that?

Does that sound familiar? The problem with IT in Singapore is that most users here are IT literate and as a result, some of them may think that they know a bit more. The fact is that even for a simple website, if you or the person assisting you is not trained in IT, it's most probably going to crash and burn unless you're on a subscription basis. Why? Have you heard of these 3 terms:
  • Cross browser scripting
  • SQL injection
  • GET and POST

These are just some of the common areas you need to take note when you're building a website, some of which are security concerns. That means that through the above means, someone could actually hack into your website.Without some training and experience behind your belt, you'll probably not know what these terms mean.

IT solutioning is something that is quite complex and I doubt anyone can say that they know everything about it. There are many different ways to build a website and the flashiest doesn't mean that it will resolve your business needs. Translated, the current technology craze might not suit your business operations.

If you're interested, the example which I quoted above will require at the very least the following:
  • Setting up of Web, Application and Database Servers
  • Server hosting provider
  • Bandwidth provider
  • Domain Name Service
  • SSL (if there's login)
  • Flash
  • Website viewable in what browsers on what platforms?
  • Development of HTML
  • Development of an application language (e.g. PHP, Java, .Net)
Oh by the way, do you know that not all IT graduates know how to manage all the above?

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