1.Explain the difference between a proprietary technology and an infrastructural technology.
a.Proprietary technology is confidential information that is taken and used to gain a competitive advantage. Small businesses can own proprietary technologies and can be used to maintain a long term advantage; gaining higher profits than rival companies. Infrastructure technology is computer hardware, software, data, storage technology, and networks providing a portfolio of shared IT resources for the organizations. Infrastructure technology is greatly valued when shared among companies versus kept in seclusion.
2.Name two circumstance where an infrastructural technology provides a distinct competitive advantage.
a.One example of the advantage of having infrastructural technology is having a product or service before it is invented or offered by someone else. A second example would be companies offering a unique corporate culture and offering extensive benefits or perks to keep employees motivated. In turn this will increase not only productivity but also will allow their employees to maintain motivated and achieve satisfaction.
3.Why is the competitive advantage of infrastructural technologies relatively short lived?
a.The competitive advantage of infrastructural technologies is short lived due to the constant desire to better a product. Companies who come out with the newer or advancement of a particular product will have competitors fighting to come out with the next newer or advanced product and so on. Therefore, innovations only remain new for a certain time frame before another company precedes them.
4.What arguments does the author provide that IT is an infrastructural technology?
a.IT is an infrastructural technology due to the extensive advancements that are constantly being produced by multiple companies and businesses. Infrastructural technology is a constantly changing field as IT is constantly being advanced and the use of IT has also been adapted by many organizations and industries as common practice.
5.To what does the author attribute the success of companies who appear to have used technology to their long-tern competitive advantage, such as Walmart and Dell?
a.Dell and Walmart waited to make IT advancements until experimental technologies proved beneficial. By waiting to invest in IT, the fore running companies had spent more and in the end resulted in a financial loss due to outdated technology.