Monday, March 04, 2002

I was reading through a message thread on a forum in which Mike was debating the state of our industry. Basically it's the same old story: those users have the audacity to treat us dismissively. I am not going to become embroiled in the debate, and personally think Mike is wasting his time since most of the debaters are developers who probably spend their lives doing heads-down coding.

Many of the debaters also seem to come from small company/small-to-medium client environments--the wild, wild west. The issue seems to boil down to professional standards, or the lack thereof.

There are professional standards, which Mike mentioned in some of his posts. I think the most promising professional organization is the International Council on Systems Engineering, which has technical standards committees and working groups, and international influence. They are organized and are actively promoting professionalism in their community. So it can be done. I just don't think it is going to get done by a group of independent consultants.

Interestingly, Mike mentioned in a different discussion thread that the US was being left behind because of quality and professionalism issues. Naturally there was a lot of heated push-back about that. A little research on my part yielded the following fact that deflates the naysayers' arguments: a Canadian organization called CIPS (Canadian Information Processing Society) is taking the initiative by establishing professional standards and a certification called I.S.P (Information System Professional). The CIPS mission statement is strongly worded and shows both national leadership on the part of Canada and an example of how to go about establishing professional standards and certifications:

CIPS, through the work of the Certification Council is dedicated to establishing a registered and regulated information systems profession in Canada as well as to establishing the groundwork for a fully licensed profession. The council works to determine, develop and maintain the integrity, credibility, and competence of individuals active in the IT field.
I've made a CIPS presentation available in PowerPoint format if anyone is interested in the history and a summary of objectives.

I came across four PowerPoint presentations that augment recently discussed topics here and in Postcards from the Revolution:

  1. HIPAA Readiness for those who are in the health care industry.
  2. ebXML Update.
  3. XML and E-Business.
  4. Internet Commerce: Understanding Payments, Security and Storefronts.
That last presentation has 234 slides. Good evening from Azusa, California.

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