(Note: Be sure to click "reload" to see the latest announcements.)

May 16

All participation and project grades have been posted. All that is missing at this point is the grades for the third project, which should be posted shortly. Sorry for the delay.

The project participation is in the form of an adjustment to your project grade between -0.5 and 0.5 on a four-point scale (one-half grade). An adjustment (most of them small) was made only if there were clear indications from the participation survey of somewhat unequal contribution to the projects. Adjustments were made on a zero-sum basis, so that the group average for the projects is unaffected by this adjustment. If somebody got a positive adjustment, other students were adjusted down to just compensate. If you got a negative adjustment, it doesnt mean you didnt work hard, it just means somebody else worked even harder! Look at it this way -- your group's project grade benefited from their hard work, so your grade benefited also. If you got an adjustment of -0.25, it is because you failed to fill out the project participation survey even after several reminders.

The forum and class participation grades count for 20% of your class average, and are weighted together according to the nonlinear formula given earlier. The weighting of projects in the project average is 40%, 20%, and 40%.

April 29

Surveys. Eight end-of-course surveys have been posted on the class homepage. Seven of them are are manditory -- failure to fill out by 5pm on May 9 will adversely affect your course grade. Five of them are to be filled out after each debate, and the other three can be done at any time.

Debates. The debates start Monday. A reminder that on Monday and Wednesday of next week a debate will start promptly at 9:30, so please come to class early to avoid disrupting the debates.

April 26

Eric Brewer's slides from today are available here, along with a video of his same talk given in a different context.

April 20

Project grades. The grades for project 1 have been posted, and you have been sent email with grading comments to your "private mail" account.

Project informed consent. Project groups please sign the informed consent form and submit to the instructor so that we can post your project 1 reports in a public site for the benefit of future students.

April 19

Talks. On Monday we are fortunate to have James Manyika of McKinsey speak again on "Consultants in the Internet Age". DM and HV will both be out of town. On Wednesday, Prof. Eric Brewer of Berkeley/CS will give a talk on "The New Internet". We will use that as an opportunity to dicuss the future of the Internet.

The slides of C. Szyperski of Microsoft Research have been posted in a special place -- right on the course homepage (so that they are password protected).

April 12

Reading. On Monday we will have a talk from Clemens Szyperski of Microsoft Research. His talk and discussion will focus on the differences between software and other goods and services, and will draw from a subset of the issues in the paper "Industrial and Economic Propertes of Software" that was passed out in class today. Please read that paper before class (and try to ignore the roughness of it, as it is an early first draft) because the talk will cover only a subset of issues addressed there.

Debates. The dates/times for all the debates have been set, and are listed on the course calendar. These were determined by  coin toss (three tails in a row!). Note also that you will not be informed as to which side of the issue your are defending until about 48 to 72 hours before the actual debate. Those times are also listed on the calendar, and at that time you will find that information on the course homepage -- look for the icon "Debate sides".

April 5

We have a series of outside speakers coming up. On Monday, Dr. Gary Baldwin of Agilent (formerly HP) will talk about a wireless local-area networking case study. He has put in a lot of effort to relate this to the topics of the class, and will use the format of a dinner theatre -- discuss all the miriad considerations in the strategic decision process, and then let you guess (educated guess!)  the outcome. On Wednesday, we will have a combination of an academic and his business partner (Prof. Joe Hellerstein of Berkeley/EECS and Rick Caccia, Haas MBA graduate) discussing what strategic  issues they encountered in positioning database technology for network markets.

April 2

On Monday, Prof. Chenming Hu of Berkeley/EECS will discuss the future of the semiconductor technology and industry.

Project3: The description for project 3 has been finalized and posted on the class Web site. Your first milestone is due April 10. All other dates relative to this project have been added to the course calendar.

Midterm: Per the earlier email announcement, the midterm originally scheduled for this week has been cancelled in favor of your spending more time and effort on project 3.

Reading: You should now read Chapter 10 of Information Rules in preparation for project 3. On Monday, DGM will discuss interoperability and portability -- optional reading pertinent to this topic from Understanding Networked Applications:

March 21

Project 2: The project 2 grades have been posted (as "P2") on a standard 4-point scale. All the groups came through well, so there wasn't much to distinguish them. Calibration was as follows:
A: did conscientious job and turned in on time
A-: little less conscientious job, and turned in on time
B+: turned in significantly late
You can see the histogram for the whole class on this or any other grades by clicking on "graph". We haven't yet decided on the weighting of the three projects, but obviously this one will be weighted much less than the other two.

March 19

Monday DGM will cover standardization (what is a target for standardization and how is the standardization process changing). DGM will also, time permitting,
start on the topic of interoperability and portability.

Wed we have a guest talk/discussion from McKinsey about the ASP industry.

Friday your Project 1 reports are due.

March 8

Reading: We are now moving into standardization, so you should now read Chapters 8 and 9 of Information Rules in preparation for the upcoming week. Also look at the "examples" posted on the course homepage relative to these topics.

Optional readings from Understanding Networked Applications :

Network effects and lock-in, Section 8.1
Standardization, Section 7.3

Feb 29

Project feedback. All project groups should now have feedback from both instructors, posted on the discussion forum.

Feb 26

Project 1. Your instructors have started posting feedback to your Project 1 Milestone 2 outlines on the discussion forum (forum "Project 1 Milestone 2 feedback"). You should receive feedback from both instructors shortly. Feel free to ask questions or ask for clarification by "replying to our postings". (Use of the forum simplifies the coordination of the two instructors's feedback.) You might also benefit from looking at other group's outlines and feedback, in terms of understanding better what the instructors are looking for.

Several project groups have not posted their outlines. Please do so, as the final project report is due in only three weeks!

Reading: You should read Chapters 3, 5, 6 and 7 of Information Rules in preparation for the upcoming couple weeks of class. Also look at the "examples" posted on the course homepage relative to these topics.

Feb 22

The participation in the discussion forum has fallen off considerably the past week. Don't forget to participate. It is fun and interesting! (Participation also contributes to your grade.)

Feb 15

In class Wed we will discuss the microeconomic modeling of versioning; here is a writeup if you would like to look at this first.

Feb 14

Projects: I have posted a list of projects from previous years. We will be assigning some of them as reading. Also please be cognizant of differentiating your project reports from those done previous years.

Feb 9

I made another pass at the enrollment and project groups. The project group membership has been updated to reflect dropped students. However I am still a little confused about groups B, D, and K as there has been some movement around and a couple of students who were in group K are unaccounted for. I am hoping for clarification shortly.

Read this concise paper on "Opportunities for E-Commerce in Networking".

Feb 6

Read this essay on the future of information appliances.

Note that the first project milestone (choosing the topic to work on) is due this Friday. You need to get your group mobilized. Please read your "Private mail" on the class homepage to make contact with your group. You can send email to your group by clicking the "letter icon" next to your group. In class on Monday we will pass out a list of groups and their members, and allocate a few minutes at the end of the class for you to meet your group members. Another way you might contact group members is sending email to majordomo@sims with the message "who is224" and look for your group members' email addresses.

Feb 1

Before Wed class, read Chapter 2 of Information Rules, and also the news articles under "Examples->Pricing" on the course homepage. These examples will be discussed in class on Feb-2 and Feb-7.

When posting to the class discussion forum, please keep in mind that some students in the class are less technical, and others are less business oriented. Please make your post understandable to everybody, even if this means more fully explaining things! (Actually this will help you understand the issues more fully as well.)

Optional readings from Understanding Networked Applications relative to the first few lectures by D.G. Messerschmitt:

Architecture, section 4.2, 4.3, and 6.2
Layering, section 4.4 (especially 4.4.1) and 6.3
Industry participants: section 7.1
Optional readings from Understanding Networked Applications relative to information economics:
Information, section 2.3.1, 4.1, 8.2.1-3
Pricing, section 8.2.6

Jan 27

Project groups have been formed from students enrolled in the course (not waitlisted). If anybody drops the course, they will be replaced by a student from the waitlist, both in the project group and in the course. Pairwise exchanges among groups are permissible as long as they do not violate interdisciplinary constraints. (For example two MBA students may exchange groups with no problem.) Please inform the instructor of any changes.

You can see who your group members are at "Project groups and reports". You can easily send email to your group members by clicking on the mail icon next to the group. However, this uses the internal mail system, accessed by the "Private mail" icon. (It would be nice if each of you could specify a forwarding address, but unfortunately this capability is not available. Perhaps it is good to keep email relative to the projects separate.)

Your instructors will also use the internal mail system to communicate with you about your project topics and reports, etc., because the system makes this extremely easy. Please communicate with the instructors about projects using the internal mail system.

Project 1 milestone 1. Project 1 milestone one is due Feb. 11, so you need to get going. Appoint a group leader for the first project, and meet to discuss the case you would like to address. Please read the Project 1 description carefully before proceeding.

Jan 25

Enrollment situation. I checked out the enrollment situation and currently we have 51 students enrolled and 29 more students waitlisted. These numbers have not decreased as much as last year (and also started higher). (This is satisfying to your humble instructors!) Unfortunately we aren't allowed to increase enrollment beyond the 51 because of the fire marshall regulations (the violation of which can result in fines to the university, not to mention the serious safety concerns). Of course it is possible (and even likely) that some unknown number of enrolled students may yet drop the course, which would accommodate a like number of waitlisted students. Our apologies in advance to those anxious waitlisted students we cannot accommodate!

Jan 24

Project descriptions. The project two and project three descriptions have been updated. They will likely be refined some more before you actually start working on them.