Letters to the Editor

Letters to the Editor

Counting a site's greatest hits

In reference to the Power User column 'Web page designers must remember their audiences' PC abilities' [GCN, Oct. 11, Page 32], I have wrestled with this issue many times.

I have found www.thecounter.com, a service of internet.com Corp. of Westport, Conn., to have some invaluable data. If you look under its Global Statistics link, you'll see a wealth of information about visitors to pages that have one of its counters installed.

Now, I'm the first to admit this isn't a truly random sample, but the number of visitors'several hundred million during say, the month of September'is so large that it constitutes a random sample. Intuitively, this isn't too hard to swallow. The counters are put on private home pages, business pages, .org pages and the pages of overseas organizations. Visitors to any one of these sites might run the gamut from a Silicon Valley, Calif., ubernerd to someone who has minimum Internet knowledge.

I have found the numbers to be very useful. You can look at trend lines by examining statistics for months back about a year or so. If you want to see the trends in Java-enabled sites, just click from month to month, copy down the numbers, and you've got your trend.

Anyway, I enjoyed the column and thought this information might interest your readers.

Russ Smith

Operations research analyst

Army Materiel Command

Alexandria, Va.

Clarifying JFMIP

I read your article on Joint Financial Management Improvement Program-approved financial applications in the Oct. 11 issue [Page 1] with great disappointment. I believe the article did not accurately portray the complexity of the issue and conveyed a negative image toward not-yet-approved vendors.

The article referred to 'nine vendors [who] vied for a spot' and to 'the three that survived the JFMIP testing,' implying that the initial round of testing is complete and many of the aspiring vendors failed.'The fact is that eight to 10 vendors elected to take the test between June and December of this year and when the article appeared, JFMIP was only a bit more than halfway through its initial round of scheduled tests.

In addition, the article stated that 'the list replaces the previously mandatory Financial Management System Software Schedule.' The FMSS Schedule expired on Sept. 30, and all vendors were able to modify existing General Services Administration Multiple-Award Schedule contracts to add offerings formerly on their FMSS contracts. My company, for example, received a modification to its GSA schedule contract to add products, services, training, documentation and maintenance that were formerly on our FMSS contract. When we have our scheduled opportunity to take and pass the test, we'll be able to sell our core module as a JFMIP-approved product.

Eric Dressler

Vice president of business development

ICF Information Technology Inc.

Fairfax, Va.

Truth and value from the Rat

I just finished reading the Oct. 4 Packet Rat column in GCN [Page 54]. As always, it's so true to life, it's frightening. The undersecretary's line when dismissing the Rat as chief information officer''We'll find someone less technically qualified to fill the position''was priceless.

The Packet Rat column is always the first thing I turn to when my copy of GCN arrives. Thanks for a great job.

Shane P. Murphy

Chief, information systems

New York Air National Guard

Niagara Falls, N.Y.

GCN welcomes letters to the editor. Letters should be typed double-spaced and must include name, address, telephone number and signature of the author. Send to:

Letters to the Editor,

Government Computer News, Suite 300,

8601 Georgia Ave.,

Silver Spring, Md. 20910.


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