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Derrick Wlodarz
Attended DePaul University
Lives in Park Ridge
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In the 1990s, a company without an IT department probably wasn't using computers. Today, small/midsize organizations are increasingly ditching the Leviathan that is the IT dept in favor of the cloud and/or managed services. Are traditional IT depts their own worst enemies? In many cases, I'd say so. Here's my take on what is decimating the formal IT dept of yesteryear.
For many organizations under 100 users or so, there has been a trend on the rise that is either decimating formal IT departments entirely, or trimming them down to bare minimum levels. Many in the IT industry wouldn't notice it, because, of course, they may likely be working for such a department themselves. It's hard to have an objective viewpoint when you're part of the status quo.
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Might be your best article so far.
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Derrick Wlodarz

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The funniest geek humor I've seen on YouTube in a good while. These kids completely poo-poo one of the first Apple computers ever released - call it BORING among other humourous color commentary. The fruit company can't win them all, it seems.
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Microsoft's actions at TechEd this year spoke loudly: the cloud is becoming the new status quo, with on-premises products taking a bigger backseat as time goes on. The right direction, in my eyes, for evolving IT needs and further cutting costs through cloud economies of scale.
As a yearly event geared towards my neck of the woods, the IT pro community (non-developers!), TechEd is the sort of Microsoft-focused conference that resonates with me. It's the one large event solely dedicated to the products and technologies I am knee deep in consulting customers on.
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Microsoft claims that it's on a cloud-first path going forward with Office 365. Then why the heck is Outlook Web App still stuck in the 90's in some respects? After using Gmail in the browser day to day before moving to Office 365, Outlook Web App is a bit painful in some areas. Here's what Redmond should focus on cleaning up before releasing new fancy features.
Microsoft's timing on a blog post released today, provocatively titled
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Let's face it: the US government contracting system for IT projects is severely broken. Healthcare.gov is far from the exception -- failure is considered par for the course in large scale public sector IT overhauls. If there's nowhere to go from here but up, where do we begin? I've penned some of the thoughts that I presented to students during a live webcast with a Colorado State University class a couple back.
Government IT projects have a tendency to fall on their rear ends more often than not. After the miserable debacle that was Healthcare.gov last October, I made the case for why the larger than life public face of Obamacare had zero chance of succeeding in original form. Fast forward six months, and after some contractor firings and a public about face consisting of a
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Xbox One wants to take over the living room, but its got one big sore thumb: no native TV streaming support. Its current implementation of HDMI passthrough is more of a stopgap then a permanent all-in-one living room solution. Here's how Microsoft can solve this quite easily.
Aside from a lack of backwards compatibility with Xbox 360 games (which is being worked on as I write this), what's the other big reason I am holding off on a first gen Xbox One? A TV streaming & DVR experience that was much talked about in the buildup to launch, but has fallen short in reinventing the way we manage and consume TV content today.
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All good things must come to an end. And as such, Microsoft has officially killed off Outlook.com's free custom domain email capabilities. If you were thinking of using the service, it's time to look towards a paid solution. And same goes for anyone on the service still. It officially enters life support mode after July 31!
After Google chopped off the umbilical cord from the oft-used Free Edition of its Google Apps suite back in late 2012, users were left wondering where they could take their custom email domain needs to. One of the best remaining alternatives was by far Outlook.com, Microsoft's free email service which I use in place of Gmail now. I penned an extensive how-to piece on getting Outlook.com working as your own custom domain host for email last year.
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The new edition of the Journal for Social Era Knowledge is out, and my article on how digital is saving libraries -- not hurting them --  made the cut. A good read for insight on how libraries are adapting well with the times, and using things like ebooks and digital collaboration to their advantage and actually thriving quite well.
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It's a classic Microsoft dilemma: you have two duplicitous products doing roughly the same thing (VoIP), but you continue to dump overlapping efforts instead of consolidating on the better product, which is by far Lync. Here's the case for why Skype's days are numbered, if Microsoft sees the writing on the wall as I do.
As we enjoy the restive Memorial Day weekend here in the States, I finally have a chance to relax from the hustle and bustle of tech consulting life. In my leisurely net browsing, I came across an interesting conundrum raised in an article I stumbled upon at ArsTechnica by Peter Bright titled simply
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Traditional tablets, like the iPad and Nexus line, are ill-equipped to get real work done in a modern college setting. And numerous studies are proving that higher ed students are saying "no thanks" for the most part. As a grad student myself, here's my take on what's holding them back: lack of a digitized stylus for precise notetaking, and no keyboard/mouse for content manipulation.
While Apple and Google are fighting a FUD war for the hearts and minds of K-12 campuses, there's one area of education that neither has been able to penetrate with success: higher ed. Specifically, I'm referring to the conglomerate of colleges and universities across the US (and likely abroad).
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Also, they can't multitask very well. While Samsung has multiview, it's very limited. iOS 8 should be coming out with a multi view-like feature, but you have to jailbreak to get it now. And you have to root to get it on android.
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IT pros like myself have been fighting the good fight towards eradicating XP for the last year or so, and Microsoft decides to keep dangling support carrots to the remaining holdouts? Here's why it's so dangerous for Redmond to be backtracking on its April 8th end of life stance.
Microsoft shocked the IT world this past week by making the cardinal mistake: releasing another XP patch after support officially ended. While I think Redmond makes a lot of mistakes, from licensing nightmares to marketing blunders, this particular move really irks me.
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I got a chance to play with what has to be by far the most unique TV on the market -- an 82" touchscreen running a full blown copy of Windows 8.1. It's called Perceptive Pixel, and it's made by Microsoft. The problem? The average joe can't buy one yet. Here's hoping that seriously changes!
It's tough for me to get too excited about TVs these days. I'm past the glitz of the 3D craze. And
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Information Technology Specialist | Consultant | Trainer
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Currently
Park Ridge
Previously
Chicago
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312-445-0702
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Introduction
I'm a geek by hobby but a professional by trade. Technology & the cloud is my driving passion but I also enjoy hockey in all forms - ice and inline.

I happen to be one of a handful of Google Apps Certified Trainers in the States, as well as a Google Apps Certified Deployment Specialist. I've also got a scattering of certifications from CompTIA including the A+, Network+, Server+, and Security+. I hold Microsoft's MCTS certifications in Windows Vista and Windows 7.

My company FireLogic is based in Park Ridge, IL and provides computer repair, technology consulting & training for the northwest Chicagoland area. Visit our website FireLogic.net for more details.
Education
  • DePaul University
    Business Administration, 2005 - 2009
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