Subject: Chicago Computer Guide This Week
Chicago Computer Guide This Week
For February 8-14, 2002

I.    This Week's Calendar of Events
II.   High Fashion For The Gadget Geek
III.  COMDEX Chicago Returns
IV.   Odds And Ends
V.    Becoming An Entrepreneur, Part 1
VI.   Chicago Computer Company News
VII.  Chicago Computer Dealers

I. This Week's Chicago Computer Events

Event: Microsoft .NET Developer Conference - 
           Visual Studio.NET Launch!
Date: February 13, 2002
Place: Navy Pier, Chicago, IL
Time: 8:00AM - 7:00PM
Information: CALL 1-877-MSEVENT or online at 
Join us for the Visual Studio .NET Launch! Discover the power of 
NET waiting to be explored! Meet top industry partners and ISV's 
and see .NET solutions in action. Win cool raffle giveaways: XBOX, 
PC Computers, MSDN Universal Subscription for one year, 
Windows XP, Office XP, Pocket PC, MP3.

Event: Giant Computer Show and Sale
Date: February 17, 2002
Place:Orland Park Civic Center, 147th & LaGrange Rd, Orland Park
Time: 9:30am - 3:30pm
Information: Call the hotline at 708-974-3123 or go to 
           for your $1 off 
                    admission coupon.
Dealers from throughout the Midwest converge to offer bargains 
on most computers and peripherals.

Event: CACHE Meeting
Date: February 17, 2002
Place: The Levy Senior Center, 2019 W. Lawrence Ave., Chicago, IL
Time: 9:00am
Information: Call 800-797-5465 or go to http://www.
Chicago's first computer user group, founded in 1975. Our member 
systems are predominantly IBM compatibles and are used at home and 
business settings. We range from novice to expert and from amateur to 


II. High Fashion For The Gadget Geek
By Michael Cloutier

If you have more portable gadgets than you know what 
to do with, and you want to tote them along with you, you 
are more likely to look like a Borg drone on Star Trek than 
a mobile enabled professional. . 
Click here for more:

III. COMDEX Chicago Returns
By Tom Henderson

This year's COMDEX Chicago value proposition contains, 
among others, three highly focused themes: wireless/mobile
connectivity, security and contingency management and 
a newly evolved program for customer relationship management.
For more go to,

by Wayne M. Krakau

Here are some odds and ends products that aren't appropriate
for their own, individual columns. They include some of the
oddest ends I have ever seen. Click on for more.

V. Becoming An Entrepreneur, (Part 1)
 Larry M. Zanger, 2002, all rights reserved.

In the current business environment, many people find 
themselves out of work, laid off by a previous employer, 
disillusioned by their position or just excited to try something 
new on their own. This two-part article has been written to 
help individuals seeking to become entrepreneurs to separate 
from their employer with a minimum of problems.
Click here:


V. Chicago Computer Company News

Burr Wolff Forms Regional Office In Chicago 

    HOUSTON, TX/PRNewswire/ -- Chalk another win for Illinois 
because of the Midwest's strong manufacturing base.  Burr Wolff, 
which provides comprehensive state & local tax consulting and 
compliance solutions throughout the United States, has created 
a new regional office in suburban Rosemont, Illinois.  The company 
established its third regional operation there because the Chicago
metro area is the ideal hub for delivering software and consulting
solutions throughout the region.
  "Burr Wolff provides sales & use tax recovery and planning to 
help our clients not only address the errors that cause overpayment, 
but also define ways to prevent such occurrences from happening 
in the future," says Mark Miller, who formed the Midwest office in 
January 2002, after being promoted to regional vice president.  
"We're now able to capitalize on delivering our services locally 
to our strong manufacturing client base, as well as those in
telecommunications and publishing industries."
    Miller has been involved with sales & use tax practices since 
1990. Previously, he served as senior manager for State & Local 
Tax with KPMG LLP in Chicago, where he managed a team that 
saved clients more than $30 million. Before that he was senior tax 
associate with Coopers & Lybrand LLP, also in Chicago.
    Burr Wolff has created a presence with a strong core team that 
includes Bill Biskup, as regional business development manager, 
and Josette Doby, as Sales & Use Tax consultant, with plans to 
expand the team by mid-year.  Biskup is a 20-year veteran of 
corporate tax software sales and implementation, most recently 
with Computer Associates and Compuware Corporation.  Doby 
joined the new regional office after serving as tax manager with 
Jones & Associates Management, and before that in various 
corporate tax capacities with Grant Thornton and Ernst & Young.
   "We have quite an arsenal of advanced technology tools and 
sophisticated methodologies at our disposal to recover overpaid 
sales taxes, and help companies manage their taxes while complying 
with state tax laws," Miller adds.  "Most recently, we introduced the 
industry's first purchase-side determination/calculation solution 
delivered through the Internet as a hosted application.  Now, smaller 
companies can benefit from Burr Wolff's powerful STS Corporate Sales 
& Use Tax software without having to invest in the infrastructure or 
   The Chicago office serves organizations in Illinois, Ohio, Indiana,
Michigan, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Iowa and Missouri. It joins two other 
Burr Wolff Sales & Use Tax regional arms: Boston, which serves the 
Northeast; and Houston, which serve the South and West.  It also 
expands the Chicago market for the Houston-based company: Burr 
Wolff established a property tax consulting and software practice here 
in 1999.

New Driver Training Center Corrects Virtual Mistakes Before They 
Become Reality

    BURR RIDGE, Ill. /PRNewswire/ -- The road to safe driving has
taken a digital turn for the better. Today, GE Capital I-Sim opens its 
first Driver Development Service Center in the Midwest.  The new 
facility combines classroom instruction with new, state-of-the-art 
driving simulators.  Whether it's truck drivers, police officers or 
emergency vehicle operators, the I-Sim program focuses on real-
life scenarios that train drivers how to avoid accidents without 
endangering life or property.
   "We can train truck drivers to maneuver their 18-wheelers 
through hazardous road conditions, or emergency vehicles to 
reach a disaster scene quickly and safely," says Mark Stulga, 
CEO of GE Capital I-Sim.  "Our complete program lets drivers 
take classroom learning straight to a life-like simulator.
     "I-Sim technology allows instructors to correct virtual mistakes 
before they become reality."
     GE Capital I-Sim's three part training approach -- classroom 
instruction, computer-based training with a complete driver skills 
evaluation, and hands-on simulation time -- provides drivers, at 
any level, with a thorough training development program, Stulga 
     With more than 30,000 accidents costing the trucking industry 
$24 billion a year, the I-Sim driver training program is an affordable 
solution to help reduce accidents.  In addition, I-Sim training reduces 
fuel consumption and equipment maintenance.
    "We're definitely plowing new ground with this approach to driver
training," Stulga says.  "The technology that's involved is 
     The Burr Ridge facility will feature the new, Mark II simulator -- 
full-size, fully operational truck cab placed in a three-dimensional 
Police officers can get life-like training on the latest PatrolSim.
     In addition to the Burr Ridge training center, Stulga says GE 
Capital I-
Sim plans to open new Driver Development Service Centers in Anaheim, 
Dallas, Denver, Philadelphia, and Salt Lake City.


Poor Data Quality Will Cost American Businesses $600 Billion in 2002 

   DOWNERS GROVE, Ill./PRNewswire/ -- A new study by The Data
Warehousing Institute (TDWI), the leading provider of education and 
research in the data-warehousing and business intelligence industry, 
estimates that inaccurate and low-quality data will cost American 
business as much as $600 billion this year.
   The study, sponsored by Arkidata Corporation ( ) 
and five other leading data-quality firms, also demonstrates a large 
between perception and reality regarding the quality of data in many 
   Despite the well-publicized difficulties of many recent IT projects 
as a
result of data-quality problems and the ongoing inefficiencies that 
quality data pose for virtually all businesses, almost half of the 
to the TDWI survey said their companies have no current plans to 
implement an initiative to improve data quality.
    Also, 78 percent of the respondents, who are business intelligence 
data warehousing professionals, said that their companies need 
education about the importance of data quality and about methods to 
maintain and improve it.
    The study, Data Quality and the Bottom Line: Achieving Business 
Success through a Commitment to High Quality Data, was based on 
completed surveys from more than 600  respondents, as well as in-depth 
interviews with industry experts and leading-edge customers.
    "In recent years, the failure and delays of many high-profile IT 
as a result of unanticipated data quality problems is causing 
executives to
wake up to the real cost of poor quality data," noted Wayne Erickson, 
director of education and research at The Data Warehousing Institute.
     Erickson added, "The good news is that high-quality data is not 
the means of any company. Companies that have invested in managing and 
improving data quality can clearly cite the tangible and intangible 
benefits of 
doing so -- including improved customer satisfaction, a 'single version 
of the 
truth,' and greater confidence in analytical systems."
     "This study shows the magnitude of the problem faced by corporate 
America today," said Arkidata Chairman and Founder Arkady Maydanchik, 
a recognized authority and author in the field of information quality.  
"We must 
pay heed to these warning signals before the problem spirals completely 
of control and billions of dollars wasted soon reaches trillions."
      Maydanchik added, "we live in an information age, where the 
success of
companies is dependent upon information systems.  Now that the problem 
been defined, we have to focus on innovative approaches to data 
data consolidation and data conversion to allow companies to maximize 
      In addition to Arkidata, which develops and implements 
integration and data quality solutions for Fortune 500 companies, the 
sponsors of the study were DataFlux Corporation; DataMentors, Inc.; 
Sagent Technology, Inc.; SAS Institute; and Vality Technology, Inc.
      Data Quality and the Bottom Line: Achieving Business Success 
a Commitment to High Quality Data is the first in TDWI's 2002 Report 
and can be obtained in its complete form at


VisionTek Launches Next-Generation Xtasy Graphics Cards Featuring 
NVIDIA GeForce4 Technology

    GURNEE, Ill./PRNewswire/ -- To answer immediate consumer 
demand for the next generation of sizzling 3D graphics technology 
from NVIDIA Corporation (Nasdaq: NVDA), VisionTek has
announced the immediate availability of Xtasy graphics cards based 
on GeForce4 MX graphics processor units (GPUs), and is taking 
advance orders for its flagship Xtasy 3D graphics accelerator based 
on the GeForce4 Ti 4600 GPU, which NVIDIA unveiled Tuesday.
    Available immediately at leading retailers, Xtasy GeForce4 MX 440 
and Xtasy GeForce4 MX 420 offer fully integrated features to the 
mainstream consumer like multiple-display support and NVIDIA's 
Lightspeed Memory
     Architecture II(TM), which radically improves memory efficiency. 
All GeForce4-based Xtasy boards come bundled with Cyberlink Power 
DVD and a lifetime warranty with 24-hour tech support.
     Through March 3, consumers can place orders for the Xtasy 
GeForce4 Ti 4600 by visiting VisionTek's preorder page at , or by visiting one of the 
following retailers; Best Buy, CompUSA, Electronics Boutique, Future 
Shop, and Gamestop, or online retailers,,,,,, Fry's/,, and
     VisionTek's Xtasy GeForce4 Ti 4600 packs 128MB of 650MHz DDR 
memory.  To take full advantage of NVIDIA's nView multi-display 
the card comes with VGA, video in and out (VIVO), and digital flat 
(DVI-I) connectors. Xtasy Ti 4600 will also come bundled with Cyberlink 
Power DVD and Cyberlink Power Director video editing software in order 
to maximize the end user's out of box experience.
    "As the U.S. retail market's leading supplier of PC graphics 
cards, VisionTek is thrilled to have the Xtasy GeForce4 MX in major 
today," said Shane Vance, vice president of sales at VisionTek.  "Our 
Ti4600 presale promotion builds on the terrific success of our earlier 
campaigns, and preserves our commitment to consumers who demand to
be first with the world's fastest graphics -- and at prices that make 
for every user."
     VisionTek's full line of GeForce4-based Xtasy graphics cards are 
available at price points and performance levels to suit the needs of 
gamers and multimedia enthusiasts alike:

-- The 128MB VisionTek Xtasy featuring the GeForce4 Ti 4600 GPU with
   650MHz DDR  delivers record-setting graphics power capable of
   generating fill rates of up to 4.9 billion anti-aliased samples per
   second, and 136 million triangles/sec. List priced at $399.99, the 
   features a 10.6GB/sec DDR memory interface, VGA, Video In/Video Out,
   and digital flat panel (DVI) connectors. (Available in early March,
   pre-orders accepted immediately)

-- The VisionTek Xtasy featuring the GeForce4 Ti 4400 GPU with 128MB 
     of 550MHz DDR can produce fill rates of 4.6 billion anti-aliased 
     sec, and 125 million triangles/sec. List priced at $249.99, the 
card also 
     features a 8.8GB/sec DDR memory interface, VGA, S-video, and
     digital flat panel (DVI-I) connectors, and AGP 4X/2X.  (Available 
     early March.)

-- The 64MB VisionTek Xtasy featuring the GeForce4 MX 440 GPU 
    boasts fill rates of 1.1 billion texels/sec and 34 million 
    SDR memory bandwidth clocks at 6.4GB/sec.  Priced at $179.99, the 
    new card  includes Dual VGA connectors to support NVIDIA's nView 
    multiple display technology. (Available today.)
-- Priced at $129.99, the 64MB VisionTek Xtasy featuring the GeForce4 
   420 GPU delivers leading-edge performance and features in the most
   affordable package.  This new VGA and S-video card delivers fill 
   of 1 billion texels/sec, and 31 million triangles/sec.  (Available 


VI. Chicago Computer Dealers

Click here at for our list 
of computer dealers and some of the lowest prices in town!

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