EuroIS/PraxIS Dec. 2001

Managing reality in Information Systems - strategies for success

Systems Modelling Ltd.


Welcome - Eurois at YahooGroups

Euro features

Update for Software Developers from BASDA
A Technical keyboard tip
The Euro in the news - inflation, consumers, out-countries

Tech stuff

Microsoft Passport & MCP risks
BadTrans and Goner
File Formats

18 Web links in this newsletter

About this newsletter, Feedback, and Archives


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As we run up to the final phase of EMU, I'd really appreciate your feedback on the newsletter so far. What has been most valuable to you, what you like to continue to focus on in 2002?

Because I am sending this out as plain text, I have given the web links in the text, after each article. You will also find them all in a convenient launchpad list on 

Patrick O'Beirne, Editor


Are you sure your software applications can support all the requirements for the business changeover to the euro? Get an independent assessment on their "compliance" or "euro-readiness" with our euro software certification service. 

The Euro in the news

Update for Software Developers from BASDA London Dec 3, 2001

With the likelihood of a referendum in the UK and moves by both Sweden and Denmark to reconsider joining EMU, BASDA feel it is time to review their standard. There has been a lot of interest from software developers in preparing their software applications for the possible introduction of the euro. BASDA held an EMU update seminar for our members on Monday 3rd December 

A Technical keyboard tip Many people in Europe use keyboards pre-printed with the US-101 layout. The downside to using the "US International" is that it needs so-called 'dead' keys - they don't respond until Windows can see what you type next. This web site describes a general purpose tool (Keyboard Layout Manager) to create customised keyboard layouts, to extend the range provided by Microsoft.
They provide a simple but frequently requested example - "add the euro symbol to the standard US 101/102 keyboard" - without all the undesirable 'dead keys'.

The Euro in the news

I have added more links to recent news articles on the euro to my main EMU/Euro page 

Unsettling preparation messages from IT firms

 No computer/IT company in a recent survey gave itself the highest possible rating for the state of its euro preparations. The palpable concerns of the companies in this sector should "give us all cause to assess our contingency plans," comments europartnership which carried out the survey of 320 organisations. 
Analysis and statistics: 
Trading with the Eurozone - The preparations that non-Eurozone companies should make and the risks that they run if their Eurozone trading partners are not ready to operate in the euro from 31st December 2001 

Euro induced inflation?

Fears that the switchover to euro coins and banknotes next year might lead to higher inflation in the euro-area by allowing companies and retailers to push through hidden prices rises are so far proving exaggerated, analysts in Frankfurt have said. Full story: 

On the other hand: 

The imminent switchover to euro banknotes and coins on January 1 is leading to perceptible increases in the prices of a number of goods in Germany, the Bundesbank said last week. Price increases were "clearly perceptible," particularly in the case of food items, the German central bank said in its November monthly report. Full story: 

Irish state companies in outrageous attempt to rip-off consumers by rounding-up  Sunday Telegraph
 "Dublin Bus will round up some of its prices when the euro is introduced next year, even though ministers have denounced the practice in the private sector. Government policy is that prices must be rounded down on conversion. A spokesman said the increase in city fares would be needed to balance out a drop to the nearest five cents in the cost of intercity bus tickets. Overall, the company will suffer a 100,000 loss as a result of the changeover. It takes about four seconds to pay a bus fare, but Dublin Bus estimates somebody paying in both euros and pounds could take 15 seconds. Early next year an average 30-minute bus trip could take an extra 15 minutes while passengers fumble with their cash."

A word to the wise 

Because Ireland is the only country where the NCU is heavier than the euro (a proxy for the UK therefore), there is a window of opportunity on a small scale for shoppers in the first week of Jan 2002. If they shop with small shops that may not be clued in, but who use scanners on pre-packed items where the price is embedded in the label, they may be able to buy prepack fruit, cheese, etc originally priced in IEP, now 21% cheaper when charged in euro.

Pictures aplenty

 If you're lookin for graphics and posters for training material, visit the Mediatheque at the Official site of the Commission 

In Brief for the DUKS : 

(Denmark, UK, and Sweden, in case you were wondering!)

Survey shows Danes warming towards euro Full story: 

Britons will remain wary of euro despite cash launch: economists Full story: 

Sweden should join euro if Britain does: Swedish PM Full story: 

The euro book

"Managing the Euro in Information Systems: Strategies for Success", Addison Wesley 1999, ISBN 0-201-60482-5. The accompanying CD has software, fonts, web links, and europapers. The book is aimed at IT managers and business executives. It covers history, regulations, business strategy, I.T. strategy, project planning, conversion methods, and case studies. 11 chapters, appendices, 368 pages.
Book description and ordering: 


"C++: An octopus made by nailing extra legs onto a dog." 
Read your boss's CV online, thanks to Microsoft... discovered another loophole in a Microsoft website; anyone who has access to a Microsoft Certified Professional's MCP number, acquired on passing the exam, can enter that person's MCP site, which includes personal details such as qualifications. That follows on earlier stories where Microsoft 
admitted that 'Passport is not secure enough' 

A Bad Trip for BadTrans
My PC is protected by Dr.Solomon's A-V, and using Eudora keeps out those 
viruses aimed at Outlook. But I'm receiving several copies a day of BadTrans. 
I now have a filter set to automatically send an email to the originator 
warning them they have it. I have to edit the "To:" address as the virus puts 
an underscore before their address. An advisory from MessageLabs says
"BadTrans.B makes use of a Microsoft exploit, meaning that it can be executed  simply by reading/previewing it in Microsoft Outlook - it is not necessary to  double click on any attachment. In addition to this it also uses an unusual  and potentially devastating trick of replying to unread messages in the  recipients in-box. The next time Windows is loaded the virus will further 
spread by replying to unread messages across additional Outlook folders. The virus also drops a password stealing Trojan KDLL.DLL previously identified as Trojan.PSW.Hooker. The trojan component uses key logging to send confidential information (passwords, credit card details etc.) from infected computers" 

Wait, there's more...

A high risk virus called Worm_Gone.A 
By comparison, the BadTrans virus was only medium risk!,289933,sid9,00.html 
"Every File Format in the World" This is a list of file name extension or 
suffixes that indicate the format or usage of a file and a brief description 
of that format. They don't really show the file format itself here as many 
formats are proprietary.


If there is a possibility of several things going wrong, the one that will go 
wrong, is the one that will do the most damage.

Nature always sides with the hidden flaw.


Patrick O'Beirne

Copyright 2001 Systems Modelling Limited, . Reproduction allowed provided the report is copied in its entirety and with this copyright notice.


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To help readability, hyperlinks in the text are given in full URL format at the end. Let me know if this does not work for you.

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Patrick O'Beirne, Editor


"Praxis" means model or example, from the Greek verb "to do". The name is chosen to reflect our focus on practical solutions to IS problems, avoiding hype. If you like acronyms, think of it as "Patrick's reports and analysis across Information Systems".

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This newsletter is prepared in good faith and the information has been taken from observation and other sources believed to be reliable. Systems Modelling Ltd. (SML) does not represent expressly or by implication the accuracy, truthfulness or reliability of any information provided. It is a condition of use that users accept that SML has no liability for any errors, inaccuracies or omissions. The information is not intended to constitute legal or professional advice. You should consult a professional at Systems Modelling Ltd. directly for advice that is specifically tailored to your particular circumstances.

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