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Internet of Things (IoT)

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120 Terms

1

Internet of Things (IoT)

A vision where low-cost sensors, processors, and communication are embedded into a wide array of products and our environment. Allowing a vast network to collect data ,analyze input, and automatically coordinate collective action.

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2

Sarbanes-Oxley Act

Legislation enacted in the wake of the accounting scandals of the early 2000s. The act raises executive and board responsibility and ties criminal penalties to certain accounting and financial violations.

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3

IPO

Initial public stock offering, the first time a firm makes shares available via a public stock exchange, also known as “going public”

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4

Sustainable Competitive Advantage

Financial performance that consistently outperforms industry averages

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5

Operational Effectiveness

Performing the same tasks better than rivals perform them

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6

Commodity

A basic good that can be interchanged with nearly identical offerings by others—think milk, coal, orange juice, or to a lesser extent, Windows PCs and Android phones. The more commoditized an offering, the greater the likelihood that competition will be based on price.

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7

Fast Follower Problem

Exists when savvy rivals watch a pioneer’s efforts, learn from their successes and missteps, then enter the market quickly with a comparable or superior product at a lower cost before the first mover can dominate.

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8

Augmented Reality

A technology that superimposes content, such as images and animation, on top of real-world images.

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9

Strategic Positioning

Performing different tasks than rivals, or the same tasks in a different way.

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10

Straddling

Attempts to occupy more than one position, while failing to match the benefits of a more efficient, singularly focused rival.

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11

Inventory Turns

Sometimes referred to as inventory turnover, stock turns, or stock turnover. It is the number of times inventory is sold or used during a given period. A higher figure means that a firm is selling products quickly.

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12

Resourced-Based View of Competitive Advantage

The strategic thinking approach suggesting that if a firm is to maintain sustainable competitive advantage, it must control an exploitable resource, or set of resources, that have four critical characteristics. These resources must be (1) valuable, (2) rare, (3) imperfectly imitable, and (4) nonsubstitutable.

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13

Dense Wave Division Multiplexing (DWDM)

A technology that increases the transmission capacity (and hence speed) of fiber-optic cable. Transmissions using fiber are accomplished by transmitting light inside “glass” cables. In DWDM, the light inside fiber is split into different wavelengths in a way similar to how a prism splits light into different colors.

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14

Imitation-Resistant Value Chain

A way of doing business that competitors struggle to replicate and that frequently involves technology in a key enabling role.

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15

Value Chain

The set of activities through which a product or service is created and delivered to customers.

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16

Brand

The symbolic embodiment of all the information connected with a product or service.

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17

Viral Marketing

Leveraging consumers to promote a product or service.

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18

Scale Advantages

Advantages related to size.

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19

Economies of Scale

When costs can be spread across increasing units of production or in serving multiple customers. Businesses that have favorable economies of scale (like many Internet firms) are sometimes referred to as being highly scalable.

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20

Switching Costs

The cost a consumer incurs when moving from one product to another. It can involve actual money spent (e.g., buying a new product) as well as investments in time, any data loss, and so forth.

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21

Network Effects

Also known as Metcalfe’s Law, or network externalities. When the value of a product or service increases as its number of users expands.

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22

Distribution Channels

The path through which products or services get to customers.

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23

Application Programming Interfaces (API)

Programming hooks, or guidelines, published by firms that tell other programs how to get a service to perform a task such as send or receive data. For example, Amazon provides APIs to let developers write their own applications and websites that can send the firm orders.

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24

Affiliates

Third parties that promote a product or service, typically in exchange for a cut of any sales.

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25

Non-Practicing Entities

Commonly known as patent trolls, these firms make money by acquiring and asserting patents, rather than bringing products and services to market.

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Porter’s Five Forces

Also known as Industry and Competitive Analysis. A framework considering the interplay between (1) the intensity of rivalry among existing competitors, (2) the threat of new entrants, (3) the threat of substitute goods or services, (4) the bargaining power of buyers, and (5) the bargaining power of suppliers.

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Price Transparency

The degree to which complete information is available.

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Information Asymmetry

A decision situation where one party has more or better information than its counterparty.

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29

Private

As in “to go private” or “take a firm private.” Buying up a publicly traded firm’s shares. Usually done when a firm has suffered financially and when a turnaround strategy will first yield losses that would further erode share price. Firms (often called private equity, buyout, LBO, or leveraged buyout firms) that take another company private hope to improve results so that the company can be sold to another firm or they can reissue shares on public markets.1 of 1

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30

PDAs

Personal digital assistants, an early name for handheld mobile computing devices

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31

Point of Sale (POS) System

Transaction processing systems that capture customer purchases. Cash registers and store checkout are examples of POS systems.

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32

Greige

Goods to be further customized based on designer/manger collaboration

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Value Chain

The set of activities through which a product or service is created and delivered to customers

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34

RFID

Small chip-based tags that wirelessly emit a unique identifying code for the item that they are attached to. Think of RFID systems as a next-generation bar code.

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35

Omnichannel

An approach to retail that offers consumers an integrated and complementary set of shop, sales, and return experiences (e.g., retail store, online, and sometimes even phone and catalog).

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36

Showrooming

The concept where customers browse at physical retailers, but purchase products from lower-cost online rivals.

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37

Logistics

Coordinating and enabling the flow of goods, people, information, and other resources among locations.

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38

Contract Manufacturing

Outsourcing production to third-party firms. Firms that use contract manufacturers don’t own the plants or directly employ the workers who produce the requested goods.

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39

Return on Investment (ROI)

The amount earned from an expenditure.

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40

Operations

The organizational activities that are required to produce goods or services. Operations activities can involve the development, execution, control, maintenance, and improvement of an organization’s service and manufacturing procedures.

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41

Information Systems

An integrated solution that combines five components: hardware, software, data, procedures, and the people who interact with and are impacted by the system.

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42

Moore’s Law

Chip performance per dollar doubles every eighteen months

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43

Microprocessor

The part of the computer that executes the instructions of a computer program

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44

Random-Access Memory (RAM)

The fast, chip-based volatiles storage in a computing device

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45

Volatile Memory

Storage (such as RAM chips) that is wiped clean when power is cut off from a device

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Nonvolatile Memory

Storage that retains data even when powered down (such as disks, flash memory, hard disc, or DVD storage)

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47

Flash Memory

Nonvolatile, chip-based storage, often used in mobile phones, cameras, and MP3 players. Sometimes called flash RAM, flash memory is slower than conventional RAM, but holds its charge even when the power goes out.

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48

Solid State Electronics

Semiconductor-based devices. Solid state components often suffer fewer failures and require less energy than mechanical counterparts because they have no moving parts. RAM, flash memory, and microprocessors are solid state devices. Hard drives are not.

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49

Semiconductors

A substance such as silicon dioxide used inside most computer chips that is capable of enabling as well as inhibiting the flow of electricity. From a managerial perspective, when someone refers to semiconductors, they are talking about computer chips, and the semiconductor industry is the chip business.

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50

Optical Fiber Line

A high-speed glass or plastic-lined networking cable used in telecommunications.

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51

Price Elasticity

The rate at which the demand for a product or service fluctuates with price change. Goods and services that are highly price elastic (e.g., most consumer electronics) see demand spike as prices drop, whereas goods and services that are less price elastic are less responsive to price change (think heart surgery).

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52

Fabs

Semiconductor fabrication facilities; the multibillion-dollar plants used to manufacture semiconductors.

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53

Silicon Wafers

A thin, circular slice of material used to create semiconductor devices. Hundreds of chips may be etched on a single wafer, where they are eventually cut out for individual packaging.

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54

Multicore Microprocessors

Microprocessors with two or more (typically lower power) calculating processor cores on the same piece of silicon.

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55

Supercomputers

Computers that are among the fastest of any in the world at the time of their introduction.

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56

HPC

A term for massively parallel computers specifically designed to deliver significantly more calculating power than conventional off-the-shelf computing technologies. The term is often used interchangeably with supercomputing.

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57

Grid Computing

A type of computing that uses special software to enable several computers to work together on a common problem, as if they were a massively parallel supercomputer.

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58

Cluster Computing

Connecting server computers via software and networking so that their resources can be used to collectively solve computing tasks.

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59

Software as a Service (SaaS)

A form of cloud computing where a firm subscribes to a third-party software and receives a service that is delivered online.

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60

Cloud Computing

Replacing computing resources—either an organization’s or individual’s hardware or software—with services provided over the Internet.

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61

Server Farms

A massive network of computer servers running software to coordinate their collective use. Server farms provide the infrastructure backbone to SaaS and hardware cloud efforts, as well as many large-scale Internet services.

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62

Latency

A term often used in computing that refers to delay, especially when discussing networking and data transfer speeds. Low-latency systems are faster systems.

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63

E-Waste

Discarded, often obsolete technology; also known as electronic waste.

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64

Massively Parallel

Computers designed with many microprocessors that work together, simultaneously, to solve problems.

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65

KPIs

Key Performance Indicators—measurable values defined by a firm to demonstrate progress toward a given goal. Examples are quite broad and could include customer acquisition, cost reduction, or improvement in the ROI of online ad campaigns.

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66

Bitcoin

An open source, decentralized payment system (sometimes controversially referred to as a digital, virtual, or cryptocurrency) that operates in a peer-to-peer environment, without bank or central authority.

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67

Cryptocurrencies

A digital asset where a secure form of mathematics (cryptography) is used to handle transactions, control the creation of additional units, and verify the transfer of assets. Cryptocurrencies usually take advantage of a technology known as a blockchain.

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68

Blockchain

A distributed and decentralized ledger that records and verifies transactions and ownership, making it difficult to tamper with or shut down.

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69

Operating Income

Income you generate through your operations. Sales through daily business operations minus related expenses. Net income is overall “profit” but can include things such as income from investments, expenses related to financing costs or taxes, or one-time income or expenses such as a gain from a sales or a corporate fine.

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70

Account Payable

Money owed for products and services purchased on credit.

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71

Cash Conversion Cycle (CCC)

Period between distributing cash and collecting funds associated with a given operation (e.g., sales).

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Liquidity Problems

Problems that arise when organizations cannot easily convert assets to cash. Cash is considered the most liquid asset—that is, the most widely accepted with a value understood by all.

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73

Inventory Turns

The number of times inventory is sold or used during a specific period (such as a year or quarter). A higher figure means a firm is selling products quickly.

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74

Deep Learning

A type of machine learning that uses multiple layers of interconnections among data to identify patterns and improve predicted results. Deep learning most often uses a set of techniques known as neural networks and is popularly applied in tasks like speech recognition, image recognition, and computer vision.

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75

Dynamic Pricing

Pricing that shifts over time, usually based on conditions that change demand (e.g., charging more for scarce items).

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76

Cookie

A line of identifying text, assigned and retrieved by a given Web server and stored by your browser.

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Collaborative Filtering

A classification of software that monitors trends among customers and uses this data to personalize an individual customer’s experience.

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Two-Sided network effect

Products or services that get more valuable as two distinct categories of participants expand (e.g., buyers and sellers).

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79

Affiliate Marketing Program

Marketing practice where a firm rewards partners (affiliates) who bring in new business, often with a percentage of any resulting sales.

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80

Flash Sales

Offering deep discounts of a limited quantity of inventory. Flash sales often run for a fixed period or until inventory is completely depleted.

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81

Goodwill

An accounting term for an intangible asset above and beyond the operations value of the firm. Goodwill can include the perceived value of the company’s brand name, customer base, and loyalty, positive employee relations, as well as proprietary technology and patents.

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82

Digital Divide

Term referring to the difference in access to technologies such as computing, wireless, and broadband Internet among wealthy and poor communities. Poor communities with less access often face less opportunity for everything from home schooling to easy access to online public resources.

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83

Channel Conflict

Exists when a firm’s potential partners see that firm as a threat. This threat could come because it offers competing products or services via alternative channels or because the firm works closely with especially threatening competitors.

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84

Instance

A software-based copy using a pre-defined model of the object being created. For example, an instance of a Windows computer creates a virtual software representation that works and acts exactly like the computer hardware and software it is modeled after

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85

Virtual Machine

A software-based representation of a physical computer, complete with operating system and any attendant software that are part of the model being instantiated. You can use a virtual machine like a physical machine, and install software, create files, etc. Virtual machines can also be subject to viruses, security vulnerabilities, and other weaknesses of physical computing, although a cloud computing provider can take some measures to prevent attacks and provide backup and redundancy.

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86

Data Warehouse

A set of databases designed to support decision-making in an organization.

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87

SQL

Structured Query Language—the industry-standard language used to create and manipulate databases.

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88

noSQL

A term used for non-tabular databases that are structured differently than relational tables.

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89

A/B Test

A randomized group of experiments used to collect data and compare performance among two options studied (A and B). A/B testing is often used in refining the design of technology products, and A/B tests are particularly easy to run over the Internet on a firm’s website. Amazon, Google, and Facebook are among the firms that aggressively leverage hundreds of A/B tests a year in order to improve their product offerings.

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90

Fulfillment Costs

Include receiving and packaging costs, in addition to shipping costs.

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91

Fork

In software development (sometimes also called project fork). When developers start with a copy of a project’s program source code, but modify it, creating a distinct and separate product from the original base.

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DMCA

Digital Millennium Copyright Act—U.S. law protecting copyrighted works from unauthorized digital distribution.

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93

Technology Stack

All of the technology products and services used to build and run one single information technology solution.

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IRL

In Real Life—online acronym for interactions outside of pre-produced videos, podcasts, etc.

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95

White Label

A fully supported product or service that’s made by one company but sold by another.

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96

Hybrid Clouds

Cloud computing architectures that combine on-premises infrastructure with public cloud services, such as those provided by AWS or Microsoft Azure. A hybrid cloud might “turn on” public cloud resources as needed, if an organization’s existing infrastructure can’t meet surging demand.

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Bursting

Shifting capacity to a cloud provider during periods of high demand. A firm that can take advantage of bursting to scale its information systems should never see its resources overtaxed since it can always rely on its partner to pick up any slack, as needed.

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98

Thin Devices

Thin or thin client computing devices have very little computing power in the device itself, and instead perform the bulk of computing and storage over the network, “in the cloud.”

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99

Platforms

Products and services that allow for the development and integration of software products and other complementary goods, effectively creating an ecosystem of value-added offerings. Windows, iOS, the Kindle, and the standards that allow users to create Facebook apps are all platforms.

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100

Staying Power

The long-term viability of a product or service.

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