Thursday, November 21, 2019

Byzantine Constantinople Essay Example | Topics and Well Written Essays - 2500 words

Byzantine Constantinople - Essay Example However, the structures are also indicative of the insecurities felt by the royal family members despite their feelings of need to show status (Mango 39) C. The Basilica cistern considerably reveals political power resting on religiously affiliated personalities, but, that the authority does not render the ruling party immune to the vulnerabilities of the century, in as much as subjugation was the trend. The cistern itself apparently allows unobserved entrance and exit of ruling parties to and from their palace which were eventually turned into huge family mausoleums (Alpaslan 192). D. The architecture is a mixture of a typical Roman design for the famous colonnades and extensive spaces that indicates reputation, and those of the Greeks which are the rolling tendrils of vines with leaves another symbol of power and status. In addition, Christian cross carved on columns can not be mistaken for the influence of religion on the design. A. The Byzantinian church, Hagia Sophia in Istanbul Turkey is lavishly decorated with mosaic of murals of cherubs and holy people who have long gone but was considered as sacred. The edifice was believed to be constructed in AD 532. This was designed by architects Anthemius of Tralles and Isidrous of Miletus. During the Ottoman Empire, the church was converted into an Islamic Mosque. The decorations were all carefully plastered. This was to hide the images as they were a taboo to Islam. But, the plasters were torn off in 1935 to reveal the original images which were grandiose (Jack 75). B. Hagia Sophia was named as Christian Church of Divine Wisdom apparently because of the internal ornaments depicting colorful images of angels and saints constructed under the Roman Emperor who ruled Turkey. But, it was actually a tomb apparently designed for the Emperor and his family's mausoleum. C. The lavishness of Hagia Sophia is a reflection of Roman power in Constantinople. Additionally, authority is coupled to Christian religious affinity. D. The general architecture depicts the complexity of the ideas of the architects in both the interior and exterior part of Hagia Sophia. The posh internal decoration which is a mixture of colors and images represents an abode only meant for royalties. The focal part of the edifice are the vaults right under the biggest dome held by arching pillars and decorated by images of seraphs, saints and flowers in a rainbow of colors. Much similar to what most people usually call as paradise on land. E. Hagia Sophia is a total reflection of a creative mind or minds of people living in the past. It is also an edifice reflective of human desire to dwell in a sanctuary where only beauty exists even after death. 3. The Topkapi palace, Istanbul Turkey A. The Topkapi palace was the imperial palace of the Ottomans in 1465 while the sultans ruled Turkey. As the structure was intended for residence, its size and decorations emits an aura of power. Construction of the huge edifice took place in the 15th century. According to literatures, the palace is actually constructed with varied materials influenced by old structures in Turkey which is mostly of stones. Decorative designs

The Educational Needs of Caregivers of Stroke Survivors Assignment

The Educational Needs of Caregivers of Stroke Survivors - Assignment Example In addition, the responsibility of health care professionals of informing patients and their family members meant the giving out of the right information to the right people at the right time. In essence, it is only through education that people can partake in the entire health care process, formulate clued-up decisions and eventually take on behavior and lifestyle changes. In short, patient-family education leads to improved health outcomes (American Academy of Family Practitioners 2000; Close 1988). Therefore, to cope with health problems and deal with health-related decision-making courses of action, people have to have knowledge coupled with pertinent objectives and therapeutic targets specific to Medication, Activity, Nutrition, Treatments, Risk factors and Aftercare or MANTRA (Pestonjee 2000). Family Education-Definition/Description Family education is a continuing and enduring progression of different processes and practices in instructing family members about the poor health or regarding the grave illness of a relative so as to enhance their abilities to handle the situation and their facility in assisting the affected family member (Fuller 2001). In the UK, the United States and likewise in other countries, countless individuals with unbearable physical illness, debilitating mental problems and extremely destructive behaviors reside with their relatives and immediate families and rely on them for monetary aid, housing, encouragement, and sincere collaboration. Because of this reality, it is imperative for families to obtain knowledge and skills so that they can assist their ill or emotionally distressed relative and evade deterioration, gain from the treatment and attain recovery.

Tuesday, November 19, 2019

What happens to the design object when it becomes a museum object Essay

What happens to the design object when it becomes a museum object - Essay Example The answer to these questions lies in the development of cognizant regarding the museum and how it impacts the value of the object Concept of Museum The Museum, as described above, is a place which is not only an artistically design building of different historical objects, but it may also have profound impacts on the people, who have interest in the history hidden behind the object2. The Museums are normally established with having social authority. The social authority refers to the perception that museum creates regarding the meaning and importance of the object. In depth and highly reliable research is required to place the object in the museum along with its exact history. The social authority also refers the social responsibility of the authority, who manages the museum objects along with its deep traces, so that the trust of the people must be maintained regarding the reliability of the history behind the object. The museum controls the ways of seeing3. 1 Controlling the ways may mean that the perception of the people regarding the object can be created or developed by the museum authorities through the way of presentation of the object along with the context of the history described with the object. The museum, as described above, creates its importance and validity. Museums are believed to be the places, where not only historical objects are gathered but their importance also increases. In other words, museum does not only gather the valuable objects but the value and the meaning of the object increase by gathering the objects under one roof. The museum’s artistic framework and design make it able to generate and spread the cultural knowledge that can change the value of the object. Moreover, the museum preserves the cultural heritage so the people from the new world can trace its history more interestingly and realistically4.. The value of the design object: Discoveries of different objects may always lead to the creation of new story of the pa st. Past has always left some signs to be remembered. The objects such as paintings, metals, clothes, skeletons, books, papers etc may be the representative of the past. The reason is that the people from the past are no more. Therefore, only their related stuff can help the researchers, as well as, those who take interest in the histories of the people who are no more. The importance of its history may be mixed with the histories of other objects. Therefore, the common eyes may not be able to catch its importance4. The increase or decrease in value of the objects by displaying the objects in the museum depends upon following different factors 2 1. Size of The Object The Size of the object matters a lot in terms of its importance in front of the common eyes. The reason is that the big pictures, objects can be easily captured by the eyes but the small objects along with thousands of different objects may be neglected because the eyes may not be able to catch the objects view. Therefo re, small objects if combined with other object in the museum may have low value in front of common eyes. On the contrary, the people who have high interest in the history of the particular times they may give high value to even the small objects as well. It can be explained with the help of the common example of museum of Australia 5. The histories behind the aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Ancestral provide different tales of the past6.3 2. Display Pattern Of the Object: The Museum’

GEOL - Meteorology and Space Science Essay Example | Topics and Well Written Essays - 1250 words

GEOL - Meteorology and Space Science - Essay Example Scientists almost proved that more greenhouse gases appeared in the atmosphere after the industrial revolution and with the development of the technology. Heating effect is dangerous for human life, moreover global warming causes many other problems such as rising sea level, undesirable change of climate etc. The given paper will discuss the potential causes and consequences of global warming and try to find possible solutions. Actually, some scientists do not believe in global warming. Some people consider it to be a myth. In order to define if it is really a myth or a real phenomenon, it is important to implement scientific research. Moreover, according to some researchers, the global warming is a phenomenon that was not caused by industrial revolution as it was met before: â€Å"Global warming is not a 20th century phenomenon. It has, in fact, occurred in the past more than once, along with periods of extreme cold known as the ice ages. With so much written and reported about global warming, sometimes its difficult to detect which is fact and which is just part of scientific scare tactics† (Fiset). There are indicators, which are used by scientists to control the climate shift, the main of them are temperature and sea levels. Researches made certain conclusions about the changes in temperature during the last 1,000 years. The 20th century is characterized by frustration of temperature. Between the1960-1970s the earth underwent the period of cooling, but still in general the average temperature increased. The temperature is increasing by 0.1-0.2 oC every ten years. â€Å"Keeping planetary warming below two degrees Celsius (3.6 degrees Fahrenheit) would, it was thought, avoid such perils as catastrophic sea-level rise and searing droughts. Staying below two degrees C would require limiting the level of heat-trapping carbon dioxide in the atmosphere to 450 parts per million (ppm), up from todays 395 ppm and the

Sunday, November 17, 2019

Hotel and Information Systems Essay Example for Free

Hotel and Information Systems Essay It has been accepted for inclusion in Communications of the Association for Information Systems by an authorized administrator of AIS Electronic Library (AISeL). For more information, please contact [emailprotected] org. 102 Communications of the Association for Information Systems (Volume 15, 2005) 102-118 OUTRIGGER HOTELS AND RESORTS: A CASE STUDY Gabriele Piccoli School of Hotel Administration Cornell University [emailprotected] edu ABSTRACT This case describes the history, strategy, and current information systems infrastructure of a midsize, privately owned hospitality firm. The case is designed to provide the substantial background information needed to engage successfully in setting direction for IS resources and their use at Outrigger Hotels and Resorts headquartered in Hawaii. It enables students to analyze the firm’s strategy thoroughly and to assess its current use of information systems resources. With this assessment as a starting point, students can develop an appropriate IS vision, IS architecture, and a strategic IS plan for Outrigger Hotels and Resorts. The case was originally designed to use the process of setting direction for IS resources as described by Martin and colleagues [2005], but is flexible enough to adapt to the structure of other approaches to planning for information systems use. Keywords: IS planning, IS assessment, IS visioning, infrastructure, hospitality. Editor’s Note: A teaching note is available from the author to faculty so requiring it that are listed in the MISRC-ISWorld Faculty Directory. I am involved with every decision that senior management takes. They look to me for an IS slant to it – whether an IT solution can capitalize on opportunities or eliminate threats. They also expect my team to independently develop an IS strategy that will further the business. Joe Durocher, Senior Vice President CIO Every manager must have an IT strategy. You can’t delegate to technologists and only worry about your allocated cost or what training your employees need. You must understand how to be master of your own destiny and make IT work best for you. Too many managers still don’t get that. Rob Solomon, Senior Vice President Sales Marketing Outrigger Hotel and Resorts: A Case Study by G. Piccoli Communications of the Association for Information Systems (Volume 15, 2005)102-118 103 I. INTRODUCTION Outrigger Hotels and Resorts, a mid-size lodging firm focused on leisure travel to the Hawaiian Islands and the South Pacific, uses Information Technology (IT) in numerous aspects of its operations and therefore must carefully engage in the information systems planning process. After analyzing Outrigger’s strategy and assessing the firm’s current use of information systems resources, we can develop an appropriate IS vision, IS architecture, and a strategic IS plan for Outrigger Hotels and Resorts. On Black Friday, September 13, 1929, Roy C. Kelley arrived in Hawaii with his wife Estelle. An architect by training, Mr. Kelley joined the firm of C. W. Dickey and was responsible for designing many of Honolulus landmark buildings, including the main building of the old Halekulani Hotel and the Waikiki Theater on Kalakaua Avenue. Nine years later Kelley set out on his own, building numerous homes, apartment buildings, and hotels on the island of Oahu. In 1963, Kelley took over the land occupied by the old Outrigger Canoe Club. Outrigger Hotels then became a reality with the mission of bringing the dream of a vacation in Paradise within the reach of the middle-class traveler. Included in the agreement were leases on three Waikiki lots that later became the Outrigger East, Outrigger West, and Coral Reef hotels. The Outrigger Waikiki Hotel was built on the site of the old canoe club, arguably the prime spot on Waikiki beach, in 1967. Throughout the next two decades, Outrigger Hotels Hawaii, as the company was named, continued its expansion in Waikiki. When in the 1970’s the zoning authority put a cap on new construction in Waikiki, Outrigger began to expand through acquisition rather than construction, ultimately becoming the largest chain in the State of Hawaii, with over 7,000 rooms and a total of 15 properties concentrated in Waikiki. Thanks to its clustered configuration, with all of its hotels located within one square mile, Outrigger was able to maintain a centralized management structure fitting Mr. Kelley’s ‘management by walking around’ style. In 1989, Outrigger Hotels Hawaii, now under the leadership of Roy Kelley’s son Dr. Richard Kelley, took over management of The Royal Waikoloan Hotel on the Big Island of Hawaii. When hurricane Iniki, heading for Waikiki in 1992, barely missed Honolulu and ravaged the island of Kauai, it provided further impetus for Outrigger’s geographical diversification strategy to and beyond neighboring islands. The firm, expanding into management agreements with third party owners, added properties on Maui and Kauai and ultimately grew to a total of 26 locations in the Hawaiian Islands. In 1996 the firm made its first international foray, opening the Outrigger Marshall Island Resort on Majuro Atoll in the Republic of the Marshall Islands. Through partnerships, joint ventures, acquisitions, and new developments the firm continued to grow internationally, adding properties in Guam, Fiji, Tahiti, Australia, and New Zealand. While growing geographically, in 1990 Outrigger Hotels Hawaii began to diversify its product portfolio by adding condominium resorts. Because of ts geographical and product diversification, in 1995 Outrigger Hotels Hawaii changed its name to Outrigger Hotels and Resorts, and in 1999 re-branded fifteen of its hotels in Waikiki to launch a new hotel brand called OHANA Hotels of Hawaii. We had an identity crisis because the market moved up, we upgraded the onbeach properties where we had higher demand and bought some nice properties in neighboring islands. But we had huge variation in the portfolio—if you stayed at a budget property vs. a beach front property, you’d be very confused as to what an Outrigger was. President and CEO, David Carey Outrigger Hotel and Resorts: A Case Study by G. Piccoli 104 Communications of the Association for Information Systems (Volume 15, 2005) 102-118 Figure 1: Outrigger Properties in Waikiki Figure 2: Outrigger Properties in the Hawaiian Islands Outrigger Hotel and Resorts: A Case Study by G. Piccoli Communications of the Association for Information Systems (Volume 15, 2005)102-118 105 Figure 3. Properties Managed by Outrigger Hotels and Resorts (International) The on-beach properties became upscale full-service hotels under the Outrigger brand. The condos, also typically on-beach upscale locations, maintained the Outrigger brand. Conversely, the OHANA brand was positioned to cater to the budget traveler looking for value on off-beach properties. Condominiums represented an increasingly important share of the total portfolio of properties, even though the firm stumbled upon the opportunity that condominiums offered. Condominiums appealed to independent travelers who would do much research and planning on their own. Condominiums were also complex, non-standard products that travel agents and wholesalers found hard to sell. Because condos were rarely built as business ventures, but rather were designed as primary or vacation homes for the tenants, they offered little office or staging space for management companies to operate in. They also lacked many of the typical hotel services and departments such as food and beverage, room service, laundry, and daily maid service. These difficulties notwithstanding, Outrigger found the condo business appealing because it provided a means for expansion through management contracts without the need to acquire expensive properties. By 2005, Outrigger was a sizable firm, with about 3,600 employees (of whom about 230 were at corporate headquarters), a portfolio of properties exceeding US $1. 4 billion, and approximate revenues of US $45 million [Hotel On-Line, 2003]. But at the heart of its strategic positioning a commitment remained to providing a ‘sense of place,’ an experience attuned to the culture and the characteristics of the destination, and to avoiding a cookie cutter approach. Our business is really about being a â€Å"window† to an experience, not the experience itself. We are the enabler through which people can engage in the leisure experience they desire. We don’t try to export Hawaii when we go elsewhere, but we do honor the same values in the places we operate hotels and resorts. David Carey Outrigger Hotel and Resorts: A Case Study by G. Piccoli 106 Communications of the Association for Information Systems (Volume 15, 2005) 102-118 Outrigger’s senior management believed that its key competencies resided in providing hospitality to guests visiting their properties and marketing those properties successfully through leisure distribution channels. To complement these basic competencies, Outrigger’s management developed what it believed to be a superior capability to manage in a multicultural environment, including multicultural and multilingual employees and guests. Aided by a turnover rate in the single digits and an average of 25 years of employee tenure with the company, Outrigger managed to be a mostly non-union shop in the heavily unionized Hawaii labor market. We operate properties that have good locations, we have a strong travel distribution network, and our employees really provide hospitality from the heart. That creates a differentiated product making price less important. David Carey Outrigger was wedded to the success of its destination markets and to the well-being of airlines serving its destinations. If Hawaii does well, so do we. I spend a lot of time working with local tourism authorities to improve the appeal of the destinations we operate in. But airlines can be a bottleneck. We may not have available lift at times when we need it. If the airlines are full or they have decided in their yield model that they are going to only sell their top fares, there is nothing we can do. From purely the hotels’ perspective, the best thing for us is an airline price war to Hawaii. David Carey III. THE HOTELS AND RESORTS INDUSTRY As the 21st century dawned, the global lodging industry was estimated to exceed $295 billion in sales (about 11% of the world’s economic output) and employed more than 250 million workers [Encyclopedia of Global Industries, 2003]. The leisure travel segment accounted for about 45% of total volume [Horwath International, 2002]. THE HAWAIIAN HOTEL MARKET In the Hawaiian market, which was Outrigger’s traditional stronghold, 2004 data showed performance levels above the average of the global industry. Being quite isolated from any large population pool, Hawaii was a classic destination market with an exclusive fly-in customer base. The major feeders were U. S. westbound traffic and Japanese eastbound traffic. These markets were thought to yield very high return rates1—estimated by some to be around 50% westbound and over 65% eastbound. This trend made for a very location-savvy customer base. Peculiar to this market was also the trend of multi-island stays, with guests visiting more than one destination during the same trip. Table 1. Performance of Hawaii Hotel Market Occupancy Avg. Number of rooms Average Daily Rate2 Revenue* * Amounts per available room 72. 1% 706 $198. 41 $78,488 In the hotel business, return rate is used to refer to the percentage of visitors who come back again for more than one visit to the same location. 2 Average Daily Rate (ADR), is the average of all rates charged on a given date for all rooms sold that day. A yearly ADR can be computed by averaging ADRs for all days of the year. 1 Outrigger Hotel and Resorts: A Case Study by G. Piccoli Communications of the Association for Information Systems (Volume 15, 2005)102-118 107 PRICING Because the Hawaii and Pacific Rim markets were exclusive destination markets, the use of packages – including air and accommodations – was pervasive. Historically, packages were assembled and sold by wholesalers and tour operators who purchased both air and hotel rooms in bulk and re-marketed them to the traveling public. With the widespread adoption of the Internet, a new type of package was emerging under the leadership of large online travel agencies: dynamic packages. A dynamic package was one that enabled the guest to choose air, hotel, car rental, and even activities, ticket them independently, and then price them out as a bundle. Dynamic packages were appealing to suppliers because the price of each item was not disclosed, making price comparison difficult and alleviating commoditization fears. They were appealing to prospective travelers because they increased choice and fostered flexibility. Finally, they appealed to online travel agents because they built upon their value proposition—customer choice—and could potentially improve their margins. COMPETITORS As a mature destination, Hawaii had been entered by many of the larger branded hospitality and resort companies. The largest hospitality firms, such as Marriott International, Hilton Hotels and Resorts, and Starwood, developed a significant presence with eight, five, and eleven properties respectively. But the largest operators in Hawaii were geographically- and leisure-focused players such as Outrigger, ASTON Hotels ; Resorts Hawaii (with twenty-eight properties), and Marc Resorts Hawaii (with eleven properties). IV. OUTRIGGER CUSTOMERS AND THE COMPETITION THE OUTRIGGER HOTELS AND RESORTS CUSTOMERS Outrigger’s original mission was to bring the opportunity for a vacation in Paradise within the reach of middle-class families. As the firm began to diversify its portfolio, the profile of its customers and the competition also changed. The typical guest staying with the premium brand – Outrigger – was often a multigenerational customer with a sense of loyalty to the brand (about 25% of guests were returning to Outrigger) and an annual income exceeding $75,000. Outrigger guests were almost exclusively leisure travelers. This customer base created seasonality, with winter and summer being the high seasons when properties like the Outrigger Waikiki on the Beach reached an ADR of $260 and an overall occupancy around 90%. Our customers are independent-minded and look for an experience that is more regional and attuned to the destination, but still within their comfort zone. They may stay with big brands in their road warrior capacity, but that’s not what they are looking for in a tropical destination. Rob Solomon Table 2. Outriggers Portfolio and Sample Competitors Location Properties Rooms Lowest Rate * Outrigger Hotels and Resorts Waikiki 2 1,383 $160 Starwood Hotels and Resorts Waikiki 4 4,132 $150 Marriott International Waikiki 1 1,297 $209 Hyatt Hotels and Resorts Waikiki 1 1,230 $210 Outrigger Hotels and Resorts Guam Fiji 2 895 $203 Starwood Hotels and Resorts Guam Fiji 3 995 $145 Hilton Hotels and Resorts Guam 1 587 $110 *Rates for comparable rooms as they appear on the company website, December 2004, for January 2005 stays Outrigger Hotel and Resorts: A Case Study by G. Piccoli 108 Communications of the Association for Information Systems (Volume 15, 2005) 102-118 Competing for these customers, Outrigger went head-to-head with major brands that enjoyed name recognition amongst the traveling public, a flow of customers redeeming points, available capital, and availability of programs for employees such as discounted travel beyond Hawaii and the Pacific region. In response, Outrigger leveraged its assets: some of the premier locations in the markets in which it competed, strong name recognition, long-term relationships with the travel distribution network, a strategic focus on vacation destinations, a deep local knowledge and community ties, and good employee relations. THE OHANA HOTELS CUSTOMERS The typical OHANA guest was a value-minded and Hawaii-savvy leisure traveler with income below $100k a year. Typically, OHANA guests had visited Hawaii multiple times, stayed longer than average, and visited more often. Business travel was mainly military personnel and employees of corporations who operated on multiple islands. Groups accounted for less that 10% of OHANA’s overall traffic. We have about 50% return guests. Your first trip you want a beach front hotel, the atmosphere, the ambiance—you want the full Hawaii experience. When you come more often, you still want the experience, but you look for more value and instead of spending $250-$300 a night for a beachfront you can stay longer offbeach for $70-$80 a night. Chuck Shishido, OHANA Hotels VP of Operations With seasonality similar to that of the full service Outrigger Hotels, OHANA Hotels typically achieved an ADR around $66 and approximate occupancy levels of 75% over the year. A number of small regional chains (such as Marc Resorts and Castle Resorts) and many off-beach independent hotels existed in the Waikiki market. Pricing for off-beach properties was much harder to manage because of the commodity nature of the hotels not enjoying a premium location. OHANA was the largest operator in Waikiki and the largest Hawaii-owned operator. Table 3. OHANA’s Portfolio and Sample Competitors Location Properties Rooms Lowest Rate * OHANA Waikiki 13 4564 $76 Marc Resorts Waikiki 4 314 $74 Castle Resorts Waikiki 6 N/A $75 * Rates for comparable rooms as they appear on the company website, December 2004, for January stays CONDOMINIUMS CUSTOMERS Two types of customers typically stayed at the condominiums. On the low end of the $90,000 to $160,000 income bracket were families visiting during school breaks, looking to control expenses, and control their vacation experience. They valued the full kitchen – a standard in every unit – and the two bedrooms and two baths. This assessment was substantiated by the fact that condos had four times as many reservations coming direct from the Internet and tended to recover faster after a soft economy. On the upper end were ‘newlyweds’ and ‘nearly dead’ couples who liked the privacy and space afforded by a condo. Because of the need to convince individual owners to join the pool of Outrigger managed units, the firm competed with small local management companies and individual owners’ beliefs that they could do a better job alone. This idiosyncrasy of condominium operations amounted to dealing with two customers—the unit owners and the guests. The guests were unaware of the workings of condo operations and looked for the same level of service they would receive at a resort. On average, a condominium with mostly two bedroom units would achieve an ADR around $175, while properties with mostly studio and one bedroom units would go for around $140. Outrigger Hotel and Resorts: A Case Study by G. Piccoli Communications of the Association for Information Systems (Volume 15, 2005)102-118 109 MARKETING AND DISTRIBUTION Outrigger operated a Central Reservation Office (CRO) in Denver, Colorado with anywhere from 40 to 70 reservationists (FTEs), mainly depending on the volume of business. A corporate marketing staff of 12 people, allocated about 6% of revenue, was responsible for managing the brand and for going to market. An additional 2% of revenue was used to fund reservation and other distribution costs. Reservations were centralized for all properties in Hawaii; beyond Hawaii reservations were only taken at each property. Outrigger’s executives believed that distribution was a cornerstone of the company’s success, with about 50% of the business coming from wholesalers. Consumer direct (via voice or the Web), travel agents, government and military, and corporate clients made up the rest. For international properties, the source of business percentage from wholesalers was close to 80% and almost all reservations were faxed to the property. V. OUTRIGGER’S ORGANIZATION Outrigger Hotels and Resorts was a management company wholly owned by a holding corporation called Outrigger Enterprises. Reflecting its real estate development roots, Outrigger Enterprises also owned a real estate ownership company called Outrigger Properties. Figure 4 shows the Outrigger organization. Figure 4. Organization Chart Outrigger Hotel and Resorts: A Case Study by G. Piccoli 110 Communications of the Association for Information Systems (Volume 15, 2005) 102-118 Outrigger Properties wrote and managed real estate contracts with third party owners and supervised the owned assets (accounting for about a third of all properties in the Outrigger portfolio), as well as the development, acquisition, and sale of properties. Outrigger Hotels and Resorts, the operating arm of Outrigger Enterprises, was responsible for the writing of new management contracts, and for overseeing property renovations and operations of the managed hotels, resorts, and condos. Outrigger Properties generally negotiated a base rent and a 3 percentage of revenue with tenants; revenues from leased space were assigned to the hosting property’s own PL. Room revenue made up the bulk of each property’s revenue. Income from leased space ranged from as low as 5% in hotels with little retail space to as high as 20% in some of the most appealing locations. Other more marginal revenue was derived from parking, in-room entertainment, telecommunications, and kids’ clubs operations. Outrigger Hotels and Resorts historically maintained a highly centralized organizational structure. As the firm grew in size and geographical distribution a more distributed structure emerged, but, reflecting its roots, Outrigger Hotels and Resorts remained consolidated where possible. We have centralized services – accounting, IT, finance, engineering, purchasing, special projects – that support all the properties on Oahu, as well as indirectly the neighboring islands. There is also one executive housekeeper in charge of all properties. We run the OHANA Hotels like a 4,200 room distributed hotel. It is very efficient. Chuck Shishido As the firm expanded internationally it became more decentralized, with resorts in the Pacific Rim working much more like independent operations and organized like traditional resorts. Recognizing the significant advantages offered by its centralized structure, Outrigger was looking at the possibility of integrating its international resorts better. However, distance presented new challenges: We need a reservation solution for Australia, a real-time coordination with a central reservation service. They are operated as individual hotels; the central 800 number today is just switched to the correct hotel. A centralized system would offer tremendous value because we get drive-in business and substantial potential cross-property traffic. Executive VP and COO Perry Sorenseon, VI. OUTRIGGER IT INFRASTRUCTURE Joe Durocher, the CIO of Outrigger Enterprises, was hired by David Carey in 1986. Mr. Roy Kelly was a hands-on manager. He once told me he hated two things: computers and vice presidents. As the VP of IT, I had two strikes against me. Yet, in 1986 I was brought in to overhaul Outrigger’s IT infrastructure and we built Stellex—our integrated CRS/PMS. At the time all our properties were in Waikiki, within one square mile of each other. Joe Durocher In this type of agreement the landlord receives a fixed payment plus a percentage of the total sales made by the tenant business (e. g. , restaurant, shop). 4 The CRS, Central Reservation System, is the computer system used by a hotel chain to support call center operations and, generally, its web site. The CRS holds chain-wide inventory and allows reservationists to sell room inventory at all the hotels affiliated with the chain. The PMS, Property Management System, is the â€Å"brain† of hotel operations. It is the computer system that is used to manage the inventory of hotel rooms at an individual property. 3 Outrigger Hotel and Resorts: A Case Study by G. Piccoli Communications of the Association for Information Systems (Volume 15, 2005)102-118 111 Figure 5. Timeline of Major Infrastructure Developments at Outrigger OUTRIGGER’S SOFTWARE Stellex, to which Durocher refers, was introduced in 1987 as a COBOL application that guaranteed complete redundancy and 24 x 365 uptime. These two properties are particularly important in the hotel business, which depends on being able to make reservations at any time during the day and wants to make sure that its computer system is always operational. For the technically minded, the application ran on a Tandem NonStop platform and a proprietary Enscribe database management system. 5 In 1992, Outrigger introduced its first major update to Stellex, Stellex 2. 0, which ran on a Sun Microsystems UNIX platform and provided revenue management functionality and reservation center support. Because of its unique need for substantial wholesale interaction, Outrigger engaged Opus, a software company specializing on revenue management systems,6 to build their revenue management module for Stellex 2. 0. Outrigger retained control of Opus’ source code7 and over the years made substantial enhancements, mainly to manage wholesale relationships. Outrigger implemented JD Edwards ERP as the cornerstone of its back-office operations in 1990, years before the ERP craze swept the business world. JD Edwards ran on an IBM AS 400—widely considered to be a mature and stable platform. The firm felt that its centralized IT infrastructure was a source of competitive advantage. Durocher discussed the trade-offs associated with centralized IT: Decentralizing IT would decrease our capabilities while increasing overall costs. But centralized IT creates friction at times. When a hotel is sold for example, the IT allocation may increase for other properties. 8 Joe Durocher Stellex provided the anchor to which all other operational systems connected, including telephone switches, call accounting, and in-room entertainment. All of the properties in the Hawaiian Islands had access to Outrigger’s centralized IT systems, served from the Honolulu-based data center, through the firm’s proprietary Wide Area Network. Stellex, for example, was accessed using an ASP model by all the properties in the Hawaiian Islands, the firm’s Denver-based Central Reservation Office, and the Portland, Oregon-based Web servers, thereby greatly simplifying the achievement of single image inventory, disaster recovery, and overall IT management. This configuration enabled the properties to operate with PCs (as few as 12 in a 5 Tandem Computer Systems was bought up by Compaq in 1997. Compaq, in turn was purchased by HP. Enscribe is still in business in December 2004. 6 Opus was subsequently bought by Micros-Fidelio, the dominant hospitality-focused software company. 7 ‘Source code’ refers to the original, human readable computer program. By owning it, Outrigger could change it as they saw fit. Note that Microsoft, for example, guards its source code jealously so that others can’t change Microsoft’s programs. 8 In many companies, such as Outrigger, IT costs are allocated to users, such as hotels, on an annual basis. IT cost is relatively fixed and not affected much by the number of units it supports. If a property is sold, the fixed cost allocated to all other properties must therefore go up. Outrigger Hotel and Resorts: A Case Study by G. Piccoli 112 Communications of the Association for Information Systems (Volume 15, 2005) 102-118 Figure 6. Outriggers IT Infrastructure typical 500-room property) and networking equipment. The Point of Sales (POS) systems9 were not centralized, since Outrigger leased retail and restaurant space. This state of affairs generated some friction at times: The POS is the computer software used to support retail and restaurant operations. It enables operators to keep track of sales and accurately bill customers. Outrigger Hotel and Resorts: A Case Study by G. Piccoli Communications of the Association for Information Systems (Volume 15, 2005)102-118 113 We offer to interface their POSs to Stellex and pay for interfaces to automate room charges. But many of those POS ar e old and can’t interface, they must be upgraded first. Restaurants have to write a manual charge voucher and walk it to the front desk for input. It’s not a popular or efficient way to do it. VP of Property Technology, Allen White Due to the need for local support, the high telecommunication costs to and from Hawaii, and the unacceptable reliability of international networks, Outrigger did not extend this centralized model to its operations in Australia and the Pacific. The properties in Australia and New Zealand, all condominiums, used a highly specialized PMS particularly well suited for their condominium properties and their unique tax code requirements. None of the properties in Hawaii has a server on property. In the outer regions we have standalone PMS’s and on-property reservations. We don’t even try to keep Stellex in sync, they just open and close. If a date is getting full, they issue a stop-sell. Reservations that are taken centrally are automatically emailed. Joe Durocher APPLICATION DEVELOPMENT Beyond maintaining and upgrading Stellex, Outrigger’s IT professionals engaged in minimal application development—mainly writing customized reports, and configuring and interfacing offthe-shelf applications. The use of outsourcing was limited to the Web site, developed and hosted by a third party in Portland, Oregon. Yet, in order to maintain the integration of direct channels, Stellex served as the booking engine behind Outrigger’s Web site. A key initiative for Outrigger was the development of electronic interfaces with wholesalers. These interfaces were customdeveloped by the firm’s IT group using XML. 10 With many wholesalers we have real-time electronic interfaces—they can check availability and we get their reservations instantaneously. Without the interface, if they create a reservation six or three months out, we don’t see it until reporting time, ten days out, when we receive a fax and manually input it. It is virtually impossible to revenue manage like that. Many big brands have great revenue management systems, but don’t have real-time wholesaler data. Moreover, we can write wholesale contracts brand-wide. Joe Durocher Outrigger felt that its electronic interfaces afforded it a competitive advantage and preferential treatment from interface-enabled wholesalers, a relationship that proved particularly important during slow periods or a soft economy. Electronic interfaces generated substantial efficiencies, including automatic billing and invoicing without human handling, lowering estimated costs for these functions to $0. 75 from an estimated $10 for manually handled ones. But not all wholesalers were able or interested in automating reservation processing. This lack of interest was particularly true for small operations or those for whom Hawaii and the Pacific represented a small percentage of business. The industry is a mess from a connectivity standpoint. We are fortunate that we have the in-house expertise and the recognition from senior management of how important this is. Even the big companies often don’t understand the conditions for success. The dirty little secret of the travel industry is that the fax machine still rules. Rob Solomon 10 XML stands for eXtensible Markup Language. It is a language used to create a protocol enabling computer applications of partnering firms to exchange information easily. Outrigger Hotel and Resorts: A Case Study by G. Piccoli 114 Communications of the Association for Information Systems (Volume 15, 2005) 102-118 I spend 30-40 hours a week working with wholesalers on interfaces. There are many legacy systems out there; the fax is state of the art. We have made great progress with the more advance wholesalers or those that upgraded recently. Alan White Outrigger found the Open Travel Alliance (OTA) XML standards, specifying common message format and common content, of great help. But being able to pick the right partner, and avoid costly failures, remained the major challenge. While Outrigger felt it had been successful to date, with an estimated 33% of total reservations received electronically through the various channels, it still handled more than half a million faxes a year—about eight hundred a day from its largest wholesaler alone before that wholesaler migrated to the electronic interface. The firm felt that it had been able to capitalize on the use of technology to increase distribution efficiencies in the face of ever rising labor costs. Conversion rates at the Central Reservation Office improved from 20% to 45%-50% with widespread consumer adoption of the Internet. The firm estimated that as much as 60% of callers had already researched the Outrigger website and made a purchase decision but, as Solomon put it, â€Å"had one more question. † In an effort to provide support right on the website, the firm introduced live chat functionalities and offered email confirmation for significant savings in labor and postage costs. DATA MANAGEMENT In 2001, Outrigger acquired business intelligence software, a data mart, and analytical tools from 11 E. piphany running on a Windows 2000 platform. The data mart held detailed data for three years, enabling analysis down to the individual guest folio. Data were consolidated afterwards, enabling only aggregate analyses. While E. piphany was a recent purchase, Outrigger had been disciplined in collecting data for some time. We had 10 years of high quality data from Stellex; we are very rigid about data capture standardization like room category, naming conventions, request codes, [and] what goes where. For example, postal and country codes are mandatory fields. Our employees’ long tenure helps, and peer pressure is a great asset— nobody wants to be the one that ruins the value of these reports for all. Alan White The data collected by Stellex, including source of business, stay information, and consumption, were extracted every night by load programs that scrubbed (i. e. , cleaned) them, and transferred them to the JD Edwards ERP system for accounting and to the E. piphany system for analysis. Feeding historical data and forward looking availability and reservation activity, Outrigger learned to harness the analytical power of E. piphany to do forecasts and generate business intelligence both at the source of business and at guest levels. We want the marketing data. It is stupid to have a treasure trove like that and not use it. We mine it. We send thank you letters to recurring guests, we can give you history on who visited, how they got here, what in-flight magazine we should hit. We sold a resort once and they figured they would have to hire 3 people to achieve manually what our reports gave them automatically. They even set their rates based on E. piphany forecasts. Alan White The IT group served as custodian of the data, but any user with security clearance had access to E. piphany data though a web interface; the data was used for marketing and operational analysis (e. g. , analysis of call patterns to evaluate the appeal of Voice over IP solutions). Incorporating the information into daily operations was more challenging. Definitions of technical terms such as Business Intelligence, Data Mart, Data Mining, and many others used throughout this case study can be found free of charge at http://www. whatis. com. 11 Outrigger Hotel and Resorts: A Case Study by G. Piccoli Communications of the Association for Information Systems (Volume 15, 2005)102-118 115 Outrigger found it hard to justify a frequent guest program—with an average repurchase cycle for returning guests of three years, a once a year purchase was considered very high in Hawaii resort operations. Speaking about recognition programs, Individual properties have their own customer database and a strong informal recognition system. We haven’t been able to justify the investment technologically to do it brand wide. It would be a natural extension of the recognition we give our return guests, but it must be cost-effective. Perry Sorenson If a guest did not tell us he is returning when making the reservation, our current system does not have a database with guest history. Many times we recognize our frequent return guests only at the door, or during check in at the front desk. We have special programs (e. g. , for honeymooners, wedding anniversaries), but we need to know their history to appropriately acknowledge these returning guests. VP of Operations for Outrigger’s Waikiki Beachfront Hotels Kimberly Agas, a 20 year veteran with the company, IT STAFFING AND ORGANIZATION Outrigger’s IT staff consisted of 26 full time employees. Of these, 4 data entry operators and 3 developers were housed in a separate limited liability company to help Outrigger take advantage of tax incentives offered by the state of Hawaii.

The Beach Essay Example for Free

The Beach Essay The beaches of Panama City is very nice, but overly crowded. The sand inhabited beach, relaxation in the sun, and fun times. Ah, you’ve arrived to one of your favorite places on Earth, the beach, the magnificent place that God created for relaxation and fun. The beautiful ocean right in front of you. The sand in between your toes, and the blissful sounds of the waves splashing against the shore line. You look around to see the yellow beam of sun shining down on you creating a sense of warmth and happiness throughout your body. You look around to see the different types of people, adults, children, teenagers. The adults are thrilled to be away from their overwhelming everyday lives and are finally able to relax. The children are all exceptionally thrilled about their time at the beach, with their beach toys and friends. The teenagers are thrilled to get to chill, and hang out at the beach, and to get away from their scheduled lives of school and sports etc. The sand surrounding the clear aqua ocean is being occupied by many beach towels, umbrellas and chairs. Children are sprinting in the sand and screaming at the top of their lungs as they splash in the water playfully, teens are creating conversation with new friends they’ve just met. You can hear the different types of people squealing at one another in the midst of playing and what not. You look around trying to figure out which fine dining establishment is sending the amazing smells of fresh seafood your way, hoping that maybe tonight you’ll be able to go chow down on your favorite foods. Beach shops prepare for their day of excited travelers bustling in and out of their small seafront shops. Opening their doors, they bring out all of the beach merchandise hoping to sell to the ongoing tourists. As the day comes to a fault there are still activities to be had, crabbing and night walks on the beaches. Some like to watch the sunsets that turns the sea a burnt shade of orange, and the skies a faint color of orange and a mixture of blue which sometimes can result in a pretty cotton candy color. If there are clouds in the sky, it gives a stunning grayish cast that can be quite interesting to look at. The beach is a wonderful place for relaxation, fun in the sun and an overall good time!

Thursday, November 14, 2019

The Digitial Millenium Copyright Act Essay -- Copyrights Copyrighting

The Digitial Millenium Copyright Act As current lawsuits unfold and the history of the Internet progresses, the debate over the future of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act thrives. The Digital Millennium Copyright Act, signed into law by President Clinton on October 28, 1998, was written in an attempt to strike a balance between the rights of a work’s creator to receive adequate compensation and society’s fundamental right to freedom of information. The bottom line is that the objective of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act is to prohibit all Internet users from accessing copyrighted materials on the Internet. The most renowned case where this is currently happening is A&M Records, Inc v. Napster Inc (Downing 2). The reason the DMCA creates such controversy is that many people believe that the Act puts all of the control into the creator’s hands, which, in truth, is not a balance at all. However, one cannot blame this lack of balance entirely on artists because the reality is that most artists do not own the right to their work, but the company with which they signed their contract owns the rights. The question remains as to how to word the DMCA in a way that will not only promote the rise of Internet business, but will protect people’s fundamental rights. The Act, as is, will not suffice, rather changes must be made before society allows their rights to be controlled by the big-money corporations that own most copyrights to influence the government with their money. If society remains ignorant about the provisions of this law, then not only are we allowing the very people who profit from the Internet to restrict who views it, but we are sitting idly by as the government strips us of our rights. "Eliminate it" or "Lea... ...It will also help the service meet the needs of its expanding user base in a manner that is consistent with Napster’s values and the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (napster.com). There has to be a way that people can have access to copyrighted information on the Internet. There is an incredible wealth of information to be learned in this world, and it should not be denied as a result of a fear of losing a profit. We cannot develop stringent copyright laws on the Internet until such time that the entire world is ready to accept and follow these laws as well. It is useless to make law in one country when it could easily be broken in the next. Until the Digital Millennium Copyright Act is provide a solution that works for both the people and the creators, and is suitable for worldwide application, then it is useless to write a law just for the sake of having one.