What You Need to Know When Traveling by Air

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Much discussion in the cloud computing world has focused on a simple question: Is a private cloud infrastructure worthy of the name? It's been posed in many ways, with some going so far as claiming that there is no such thing as a private cloud. Although discussions like these are all too common in many areas, the question really amounts to little more than counting angels dancing on pin heads. The key issue is whether private cloud-style infrastructure can deliver real benefits like public clouds can. First, let's set out some definitions: The draft NIST definition, perhaps the best we have at this point, states that "Cloud computing is a pay-per-use model for enabling available, convenient, on-demand network access to a shared pool of configurable computing resources (e.g., networks, servers, storage, applications, services) that can be rapidly provisioned and rel... (more)

Cloud Brokerage: The Immovable Asset Becomes Movable

This is Part IV in a series by 6fusion Co-founder and CEO John Cowan on the emerging trend of Cloud Brokerage and the impact it will have on the technology industry and markets. Be sure to check out Part I of the series here, Part II here, and Part III here. The IT industry to me looks a lot like the commercial airline industry did many years ago and I think the latter is rife with lessons about the power of a true commodity market. For those of you keeping score, late last year American Airlines’ parent AMR declared bankruptcy.  The Chapter 11 filing of the once largest airline in the world brought to a conclusion the era of disintegration for the legacy commercial airline market.  You can argue about the principal cause for the airline industry’s demise, but ultimately it came down to the fact that the market leaders in the industry refused to adapt to the changes... (more)

The State of the Internet Past and Present

Kudos to JESS3 - a creative agency that specializes in web design, branding and data visualization - for this excellent ‘State of the Internet’ presentation. When you take a step back and consider the mind boggling numbers presented throughout this vid, you realise just how far we’ve come since Nicholas Negroponte of MIT Media Labs said back in ‘97 that “the internet was the most overhyped, underestimated phenomenon in history.” Hindsight is a wonderful thing but how must the guys at Newsweek feel when they look back through their archives and read this piece from Clifford Stoll, published in the magazine on February 27th 1995. “After two decades online, I’m perplexed. It’s not that I haven’t had a gas of a good time on the Internet. I’ve met great people and even caught a hacker or two. But today, I’m uneasy about this most trendy and oversold community. Visionar... (more)

Digital - Design Thinking = Status Quo | @ThingsExpo #DigitalTransformation

Every time I call up any customer support and hear the familiar 'all our representatives are busy dealing with other customers,' that my call is very important to them and from the more technologically advanced ones that I am 'fourth in the queue and my approximate wait time is 23 minutes,' I wonder why can't they simply call me back when they are free? They already have my contact number. Some of them actually play some music while I wait - which is still better than those who actually take that opportunity to inform me about their new products. Have you realized that you might be flying an airline, staying in particular hotel chain or visiting a retailer for ages but unless you sign-up for their rewards / loyalty program you're actually invisible to them? I know there are customer privacy issues at play and a customer might be using different payment options ever... (more)

Cutting Through Chaos in the Age of Mobile Me - New Report

Supporting real-time enterprise mobility that is personalized and contextually relevant takes a lot of work. In fact, it takes digital transformation. We have all grown accustomed to using personal consumer apps that know and understand us (think airline apps and Netflix), our preferences and provide contextually relevant content. Today, we expect the same from all of our apps both consumer and enterprise. Download the full report here "Cutting Through Chaos in the Age of Mobile Me". Ninety percent of mobile users highly value personalized mobile experiences. In order to deliver these experiences one must have real-time data collection, analytics, personalization engines and mobile applications capable of supporting real-time personalization. One must also have an operational tempo within their IT systems and business processes capable of supporting real-time. These... (more)

How to run a Southwest Airlines Auto Checkin Mashup from your computer

Tired of getting crappy seats at Southwest? Here's how to make sure you get a better seat all the time using Free and Open Source software. ... (more)

TripIt Launches An API. Travel Sites, Please Use It

TripIt, the helpful travel site that lets you generate an itinerary by simply forwarding the service your Email confirmations from hotels and airlines, has opened up an API for outside developers. The API will give third party applications access to TripIt’s itinerary sysytem, which now accepts data from 350 travel sites. Developers can find all the details for joining the program here. A number of applications have already used the API to implement new features. Expensd, an online service that helps business travelers manage their expenses, will use TripIt to automatically import your transit and hotel expenses. Popular iPhone application FlightTrack will use TripIt to automatically look up your flights to see if they’re on time. And Where I’ve Been, a social network application that plots your travels on a map for your friends to see, will use the API to automat... (more)

Symantec Closes Fiscal Year 2009 With Record Revenue

Symantec Corp. (NASDAQ: SYMC) today reported the results of its fiscal fourth quarter and the fiscal year 2009, ended April 3, 2009. GAAP revenue for the fiscal fourth quarter was $1.47 billion. Non-GAAP revenue was $1.49 billion, down 4 percent (up 2 percent, adjusting for currency) over the comparable period a year ago. For the fiscal year, GAAP revenue was $6.15 billion and non-GAAP revenue was $6.2 billion. On a non-GAAP basis, fiscal year 2009 revenue grew 5 percent (up 4 percent, adjusting for currency) compared with fiscal year 2008 revenue of $5.94 billion. Fiscal Year 2009 -- Record Non-GAAP Revenue of $6.2 billion, up 5 percent compared to fiscal year 2008, up 4 percent adjusting for currency -- Record Non-GAAP Earnings Per Share of $1.57, up 24 percent compared to fiscal year 2008 -- Non-GAAP Deferred Revenue of $3.08 billion, up 6 percent adjusting for cu... (more)

Maximizing Rewards

Last night I spent a couple of hours going over our personal finances which included me spending some time on the American Express customer portal.  Amex does a good job of letting you on their portal where you could be buying to maximize your membership rewards points.  They will often tell you things like “Buy at FTD.com and earn double points” (I don’t know if FTD.com is actually a partner, I’m just using this as an example).  The airlines do this as well, letting you earn points if you purchase online from certain vendors. I think its great that Amex, the airlines, and whomever else,  is giving me the chance to earn additional rewards points, but when I am going to purchase something online, I never check americanexpress.com and AA.com before buying whatever it is I am planning on buying.  So I have no idea where I should be buying to get these extra points.  M... (more)

The Long Hot Summer of e-Commerce

Smell of change was in the air, but summer holiday season promises further sensational developments: travel and tourism sector has become the number one in e-commerce market. The tourism sector share in the Internet market, has become the most important, exceeding 50% of unique users. Airlines, shipping companies and car hire, have invested considerable resources on the web, as did the tour operators and travel agents linked to these ones. The leading sectors of e-commerce tourism are the flight tickets, which boasts 60% of the total share, and this is mainly due to the growth of web surfer interest for cheap flights, but also for travel by train: online hotel bookings is however a constantly growing sector. Hotel managers have encouraged the trend to reduce the costs of intermediation: 90% of accommodation activities has its own website. In this scenery, intermediar... (more)

A Closer Look at System-Level Fault Tolerance

Last week at VMworld we demonstrated our everRun VM Lockstep Option for Citrix XenServer 5. Despite the decrease in foot traffic on the show floor, the turnout was much higher than expected. High airline prices (or possibly just the Vegas night life :)) may have kept some people away, but we presume our high turnout was a result of the increase in innovative sessions and seminars. For those of you who weren’t able to attend or were there but didn’t get an up-close look at our everRun VM Lockstep demo, Michael Keen (a.k.a. C1tr1xguru) shot this video of our CTO, Jerry Melnick, giving an in-depth demonstration of system-level fault tolerance for virtual environments. Thanks for stopping by Michael. Our demonstration gave visitors an inside look at all three levels of availability: 1. XenServer HA: Level One: Failover High Availability standard with XenServer 5 Ente... (more)