ITEC-200 Emerging Technology (“ETech”) Project
Instructions Fall 2017
Your project has identified an emerging information technology that you think could be important to a business. Your job is to persuade senior management to adopt this technology so they can sell it to their customers use it themselves to solve a business problem. It’s essential to understand that you are not selling the technology directly to the end users but to your client who will then use it accordingly.
Deliverables and Due Dates
There are four, graded deliverables that make up a total of 29% of your total course grade.
|% of Course
|Individual Topic Paper due
|Team Topic Selection due
|Team Meetings with Professor
|Draft Reports due
|Best in Class Competition!
|Final Reports due
Information Technology is everywhere in our lives. It would be impossible to cover the wide variety of currently available technologies in a one-semester course so the idea in this assignment is to give you freedom to explore an IT that interests your team and give you an opportunity to develop an under-standing of what this IT does and how it adds value to business.
The ETech Project consists of an evaluation of an important, interesting, and innovative IT. A successful project will be one in which:
- The IT is relatively new or will be coming into the market in the next 6 months to 2 years, innovative, specific, and has or could have good potential business impact.
- The team demonstrates good research skills that clearly show your understanding of the following:
WHAT the IT does
HOW it works (this must include data inputs, processing, output, storage, connectivity, and if data are available for analytics)
HOW you think it can benefit your client (i.e., the problem(s) it will solve)
WHAT the risks are
WHAT your conclusion are
- The team demonstrates effective communication – good research is useless unless it is well communicated to its target audience. You need to have clear, concise and informative presentations and written reports.
How to Select a Topic
It is important for teams to select interesting topics. Consider hardware, software and business applications – IT and general business journals devote considerable space to new innovations in IT related areas – be curious!
As your instructors, we will have the final say in the topic chosen by your team but let’s start with the kinds of topics that are NOTTT appropriate for this assignment:
- Any topic from a previous semester presented at the “Best in Class” competition between sections (see the complete list in the file ‘ETech (ITR) Best in Classpdf’ on Blackboard).
- Engineering-only type technologies such as batteries, chargers, filters, lights or any other technology that is purely mechanical or electromechanical. Your technology must include the input, processing, and output of data.
- Consumer-only products or “gadgets”; remember, you are not selling the technology to end users but to a business.
- Any IT that is too far in the future because quantifying costs and benefits will be too difficult.
Where to Investigate Ideas
Weekly technology columns in the NY Times (David Pogue) or WSJ (All Things Digital)
- IT News publications: Computerworld, CIO, Information Week, Wired
- Business publications: WSJ, Fortune, Business Week, Forbes, Economist
- Product Review Guides: CNET and web shopping sites for IT
- A good digital privacy resource is the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF): https://www.eff.org
Take the time to read several of the publications above and you will be amazed about what you can write about. What companies are using an IT to innovate in product delivery, service? The source of this innovation may just be a new IT. Explore, be adventurous – you will be amazed at the diverse set of topics that await you and your teammates! Likewise, you are encouraged to read/watch the winning presentations from previous semesters (files and links are posted on Blackboard).
- Topic Paper (Individual): Choose a potential IT topic in a 1-page report of approximately 300 words. You will write the topic exploration paper individually but share your findings with your teammates. Format:
- Title in 10 words or less
- Introduction in 50 words
- Technology description
- Business benefits description
- At least one external reference link to a web piece, article, book chapter, etc. Report structure and guidelines:
- A proper, business-like document with headers and sub-headers and page numbers. It should start with an Executive Summary of 200-300 words, followed by Technology Description, Business Impact, Appendices, and Bibliography. The target length for the first two sections should be 1,500-1,800 total words (appendices and bibliographies will vary in length from team to team).
- Writing should be smooth and elegant.
- Technical Description – describe the WHAT it does and HOW it works. Provide historical context where appropriate.
- Business Impact – what is the business currently not doing (or not doing well) that this IT addresses – that is, what is the problem your IT solves? Be sure to consider the context of your company or industry. Ultimately, all IT decisions must make good business sense – a company does not invest in IT for its own sake. What is the business value associated with implementing this IT? Does this solution make sense (e.g., should the solution be an app or a standalone device)? Business value needs to be assessed quantitatively one or more of the following ways; this is not an exhaustive list and you will need to work with your instructor to ensure the business value for your idea is properly measured:
- Increased revenue
- Decreased costs
- Increased productivity
- Return on Investment (ROI)
- Increased market share
- Balanced Scorecard
- Appendices – these should include additional details that are not central to your argument (e.g., detailed support for your Technical Descriptions or how you calculated Business Impacts). They are not a place to put “filler” or any information (including charts and graphs) that is central to your argument (i.e., don’t make the reader scroll to an appendix for a visualization that belongs in the body.) There is no word or page limit associated with the appendices.
- Graphics and Illustrations – Teams are expected to include at a minimum of 3 illustrations or graphics related to the topic and one of them must be a Visio diagram that you create (the diagram can be a process flow, a technology interaction diagram, a timeline, an implementation plan, or something similar; please ask your instructor for guidance on your particular situation).
- Bibliography – Research on the IT must include at least 5 quality references, which can include journal articles, IT reviews from credible sources, company case studies. Marketing materials from an IT vendor might provide you with some background but are not considered the strongest sources.
- Citation style – use APA-style.
References, citations, plagiarism and integrity
How to write References:
- URLs are not references per se, but part of a reference – you need to cite the specific source (e.g., Computerworld) and the source must be verifiable (volume number, issue number, date, etc.). All URLs must be hyperlinked so the reader can easily click on them for more information;
- References need to indicate list the author, source and date of publication, unless these are not available in the source;
- References can be listed as footnotes in the appropriate page, but the most popular format on paper is to list all references at the end of the paper.
Citations: References alone are meaningless. They need to be matched to citations throughout your text. Citations support your arguments and discussions. Every citation must have a corresponding reference and every reference must have at least one citation. Orphan citations or references are misleading and confusing. Citations need to list the author’s last name and year. If there is more than one author you can list the first author with et al (e.g., DeLone et al, 2005). Use APA style citations.
Integrity and Plagiarism:
- Don’t be tempted to cut & paste. Blackboard will find it. Any evidence of plagiarism will be referred to the Dean’s office as required by AU’s Academic Integrity Code. Any doubts about what constitutes plagiarism or for guidance about how to paraphrase, please email or visit the Kogod Center for Business Communications at firstname.lastname@example.org. They will be happy to help you.
- Write the paper in your own words and use verbatim text extracted from external sources to support your arguments with quotes and citations. Verbatim text extracted from external sources needs to be used sparingly and needs to be enclosed in quotes with the corresponding citations and references. Verbatim text without quotes, citations and references will be considered as plagiarism.
- If you borrow a graphic a proper citation must be used. For example: “Graphic is from the Intel website”.