Saturday, May 30, 2009

week 13

Question 1)
See if you can find an example of a privacy breach that was reported in the Australian or international news in the last 6 months. What were the consequences? i.e. legal, political, financial, personal etc. What action was taken in response to the privacy breach?
Recently in the news it was reported that a commonwealth bank customer in QLD received the private financial details of 19 others. Darren Starkey received more than 40 pages of financial statements that included names, addresses, bank account numbers, loan details and financial transactions. It was not until The Courier-Mail contacted the banks did they become aware of the problem. However they released a statement saying that they would retrieve that statements are inform the effected customers. The staff involved in the blunder have been talked to and reminded of the seriousness of the situation and the importance of customers confidentiality. The bank said that they would review their processes to ensure that a similar issue would not occur again.
The breach was serious because the details the were those that could be manipulated for identity fraud.
The bank in not legally required to inform their customers of a privacy breach however the Australian Privacy Commissioner has recommended full disclosure in situations were a reasonable possibility of harm could arise from the blunder.

Question 2)
Have you been using Turnitin software this semester? If you have was it a positive or negative experience and why?
My girlfriend has to use this software and is not a fan, I myself have not had anything to with this software

week 12

Question 1)
What does this mean by the following statements?

Trust is not associative (non-symmetric):
The amount of trust that you have in another person will never be the same as the other person has in you. Each person trusts differently and to different levels. In a business situation buyers and sellers have different levels of trust in each other. In some situations buyers will have more trust in the sellers than the sellers have in the buyers and in other situations the trust relationship is vice versa.

Trust is not transitive:
I think this means that trust can not be transferred to another person or situation. Only you can give away your trust to another person, but you can not make another person trust the other person. They must themselves learn whether to trust that person.

Trust is always between exactly 2 parties:
Trust can only ever be between 2 people. There can not be a four way trust, because you would trust each person individually, hence trust is between 2 people. There could be a situation where you trust another person but that person doesn't trust you. Hence a 1 way trust situation.

Trust will involve either direct trust or recommender trust:
Direct trust is where an individual trusts another due to direct contact and first hand impressions. Recommender trust is where you trust a person due to a recommendation of others experiences and judgements due to their first-hand contact.

Question 2a)
Have a look at the following websites. What are some of the elements that have been incorporated to increase your trust in the sites? If there are also some aspects which decrease you level of trust describe them as well.
eBay has implemented the process of having to create an account to partake in actions. This process means that people have to log in using a password when using the site. However for me, the use of the bright colours actually makes me less trusting in the site. I think that it makes it seem less professional. The large amounts of images on the home page also make the site seem cluttered and makes me feel like it is unprofessional.
The ANZ site seems very trust worthy because the site is uncluttered and clearly organised. The use of the 2 colours makes it clear and professional. The site also has numerous security procedures in place to increase security.
I don't think this site seems very trustworthy because the site seems a little disorganised. There are to many colours, fonts, shapes and sizes of fonts. There is no common theme or design through the site. It makes the site seems a little like it was made in a backroom of someones house not done by a large professional business.
The PayPal site seems trustworthy because everyone has heard of the name. The site itself is clear, organised and easy to read. The site is easy to negotiate and look around. Having the ability to log in to use the system also helps to increase security and hence trustworthiness. The fact that PayPal is showing that it is aligned with the major banks also helps in increasing its trustworthiness.

Question 2b)
Find a web site yourself that you think looks untrustworthy.
I don't trust any websites that tell me that i have won a million dollars and all I need to do is send $10,000 and a goat to receive my prize. Not sure what it is but something just makes me suspicious...

Week 8

Online Auctions
Q1: eBay is one of the only major Internet "pure plays" to consistently make a profit from its inception. What is eBay's business model? Why has it been so successful?
eBay's primary business model is a brokerage model. It has been so succesful because:
eBay allows consumers to purchase things that aren't in normal stores
consumers can buy items without leaving their house
consumers can purchase goods that are almost new for a lower cost
Items can be purchased easily interstate
eBay is a very trusted site

Q2: Other major web sites, like and Yahoo!, have entered the auction marketplace with far less success than eBay. How has eBay been able to maintain its dominant position?
eBay has kept its dominant position by continuing to provide an efficient service and a trusted service. eBay provides a way of coomunicating with potential buyers and sellers throughout the world and I think this makes people think that they can trust each other.

Q3: What method does eBay use to reduce the potential for fraud among traders on its site? What kinds of fraud, if any, are eBay users most susceptible?
eBay use a range of methods to stop potential fraud among the traders on their site. These include:
only using safe payment methods such as PayPal. With PayPal your account information is hidden from sellers.
Never trade outside the eBay site. Items purchased outside the site may not be eligible for PayPal Buyer Protection.
Never use Western Union, MoneyGram or other instant wire transfer services which are prohibited on eBay.
Remember: If an offer sounds too good to be true – it probably is. Don’t believe a seller who says that eBay is holding goods at its warehouse. eBay is a marketplace that brings together sellers and buyers. They never take possession of items from sellers or hold money from buyers.

Q4: eBay makes every effort to conceptualize its users as a community (as opposed to, say "customers" or "clients"). What is the purpose of this conceptual twist and does eBay gain something by doing it?
The purpose of this twist is so that everyone feels equal and doesn't feel they have more pressure on themselves because they're either buying or selling. By doing this eBay gains respect and trust from the people in its "community" and they will continue to utilise the services that eBay has to offer.

Q5: eBay has long been a marketplace for used goods and collectibles. Today, it is increasingly a place where major businesses come to auction their wares. Why would a brand name vendor set-up shop on eBay?
They would set up shop on eBay because so many people use and browise eBay that they would get sales from this. Where as, consumers are less likely to go to a certain companies website and specifically look for a product but if it shows up on eBay then a consumer might buy it because they can. Also it gives brand names good exposure without having to fork out a lot of money.

week 7

Digital Automata
Question 1
Write a pararaph describing the Turing test and another paragraph describing an argument against the Turing test known as the Chinese Room?
The Turing test was contrived by Alan Turing as a test of a machines capability to demonstrate intelligence. It was based on a party game known as the “Imitation Game”, where a male and female are separated from the other guests who try to tell them apart through a series of typewritten questions and answers. The male and female try to convince the guests that they are the other person. In the Turing test a human judge engages in a text-only conversation with a machine and a human each of which aims to appear human. All participants are in separate locations. If the judge is unable to tell the two participants apart the machine is considered to have passed the test and demonstrated intelligence. Since it was conceived in the 1950’s the Turing test has become a key concept in artificial intelligence philosophy.

The Chinese Room argument, proposed by John Searle in 1980, challenges the Turing test by endeavoring to demonstrate that a machine such as a computer does not think, and can therefore never be described as having a “mind” no matter how intelligent it appears. The Chinese Room thought experiment begins with the supposition that a computer that behaves as if it understands Chinese exists. Searle hypothesizes that the computer is programmed so successfully that a human Chinese speaker is convinced that the machine is another human Chinese speaker. The computer easily passes the Turing test, and advocates of artificial intelligence would surmise that the computer understands Chinese. Searle then proposes that he is in a closed room with a book that contains an English version of the computer program because he does not speak Chinese. He receives Chinese characters and processes them manually following the program instructions. He, in essence, is performing the same task as the computer, yet it is obvious that he does not understand Chinese. Searle asserts that both he and the computer are simply following a step-by-step process which only simulates artificial intelligence. There is no intentionality in the process and therefore no actual thought or understanding is involved.

Question 2
Can virtual agents succeed in delivering high-quality customer service over the Web?

I think that when this technology is further advanced there will be a lot to gain in this field. At the moment i don't think that the automata technology is smart enough to answer indepth questions but when it is it would definantly save companys on staff costs. It would also keep their customers happy because they would not need to wait on hold to speak with someone.
answer. At the moment customers would become very impatient and frustrated if like the “cybertwins” the virtual agent delivers a totally irrelevant answer to a question. With technological development increasing exponentially, it is only a matter of time before businesses can deliver a high-quality, automated, customer service function over the Web.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

week 6

Question 1

a) What experiences have you had with shopping online?
I have bought a lot on ebay and at times get addicted to it. i have bought all types of things like car parts, clothes, bikes, etc. I have also sold things like my old phone that some sucker bought for way more than i thought it was worth.

b) Describe a good experience.
A good experience of buying online is when the product arrives as described and is what you thought you were purchasing

c) What did you like about the online store you used?
I like that ebay is fairly secure so there is not as much risk involved compared to some other sites.

d) Describe a bad experience.
I haven't really had a bad experience. The only thing that annoys me at times is the time span from when you buy a product til you receive it can be longer than it should be.

e) What problems did you have with the online store?
Haven't had any problems with the store so far....

f) What features make an online store more appealing?
It is often cheaper and you don't have to leave the house. It is also good if you forget a birthday you can buy the present online and send it straight to the person and blame the mail on why it was late. i.e. When I forgot to get dad a present.

g) What features make an online store less appealing?
Not knowing if the product your buying is what you actually want because you can't test it. The online risks of trusting people to send your item once you have paid.

h) Should we expect to see the prices of goods and services rise or fall due to the migration of consumers online?
Yes, prices will fall because of the online competition they now face.

Monday, April 6, 2009

topic 4

1) Visits: a series of requests from the same uniquely identified client with a set timeout, often 30 minutes. A visit contains one or more page views. (

Page views: a request for a file whose type is defined as a page in log analysis. An occurrence of the script being run in page tagging. In log analysis, a single page view may generate multiple hits as all the resources required to view the page (images, .js and .css files) are also requested from the web server. (

Bounce rate: the percentage of visits where the visitor enters and exits at the same page without visiting any other pages on the site in between. ( It changes all the time.

2) Three sources are direct traffic, referring sites and search engines.

The most traffic are from google.

3) Internet Explorer is the most popular, which has a 67% usage share.(

4) 355 visits came from 24 countries/territories.

Top three countries are Australia, United States and United Kingdom.

5)(a) What you can track
Visitors viewing the site; new vs. returning, language they use to view the page, time on site, bounce rates, browser capabilities. Traffic sources; search engines, keywords used to search.
(b) What you can track over time
New vs. returning visitors, visits per hour/day/week/month, visitor loyalty (returning), how often they visit (regency), depth (pages visited) and length of visits, and much more.
(c) What you can’t track.
The reason why they visit the site, age of the visitors (unless the site actively collects data eg survey).

6) high bounce rate: the high percentage of visits where the visitor enters and exits at the same page without visiting any other pages on the site in between. (
key words: Keywords are the words that are used to reveal the internal structure of an author's reasoning. While they are used primarily for rhetoric, they are also used in a strictly grammatical sense for structural composition, reasoning, and comprehension. Indeed, they are an essential part of any language.(

Average Page Depth: Page Depth is the average number of page views a visitor consumes before ending their session. It is calculated by dividing total number of page views by total number of sessions and is also called Page Views per Session or PV/Session.(

click through rate: CTR is a way of measuring the success of an online advertising campaign. A CTR is obtained by dividing the number of users who clicked on an ad on a web page by the number of times the ad was delivered (impressions). For example, if a banner ad was delivered 100 times (impressions delivered) and one person clicked on it (clicks recorded), then the resulting CTR would be 1 percent.(

click: In the world wide web advertising industry, selection of a banner ad by a user. The effectiveness of Web advertisements are measured by their click-through rate - how often people who see the ad click on it.

Cookie: A cookie is information that a Web site puts on your hard disk so that it can remember something about you at a later time. (More technically, it is information for future use that is stored by the server on the client side of a client/server communication.) Typically, a cookie records your preferences when using a particular site. Using the Web's Hypertext Transfer Protocol (HTTP), each request for a Web page is independent of all other requests. For this reason, the Web page server has no memory of what pages it has sent to a user previously or anything about your previous visits. A cookie is a mechanism that allows the server to store its own information about a user on the user's own computer. You can view the cookies that have been stored on your hard disk (although the content stored in each cookie may not make much sense to you). The location of the cookies depends on the browser. Internet Explorer stores each cookie as a separate file under a Windows subdirectory. Netscape stores all cookies in a single cookies.txt fle. Opera stores them in a single cookies.dat file.
Cookies are commonly used to rotate the banner ads that a site sends so that it doesn't keep sending the same ad as it sends you a succession of requested pages. They can also be used to customize pages for you based on your browser type or other information you may have provided the Web site. Web users must agree to let cookies be saved for them, but, in general, it helps Web sites to serve users better. (,,sid92_gci211838,00.html)

Impression: An impression is each time an advertisement loads on a user's screen. Anytime you see a banner, that is an impression. (

Hyperlink: usually shortened to link, is a directly followable reference within a hypertext document.(

Navigation: Navigation is the process of reading, and controlling the movement of a craft or vehicle from one place to another. It is also the term of art used for the specialized knowledge used by navigators to perform navigation tasks. The word navigate is derived from the Latin "navigare", meaning "to sail". All navigational techniques involve locating the navigator's position compared to known locations or patterns. (

Session: A series of requests from the same uniquely identified client with a set timeout, often 30 minutes. A visit contains one or more page views.(

Unique Visitors: The uniquely identified client generating requests on the web server (log analysis) or viewing pages (page tagging) within a defined time period (i.e. day, week or month). A Unique Visitor counts once within the timescale. A visitor can make multiple visits. Identification is made to the visitor's computer, not the person, usually via cookie and/or IP+User Agent. Thus the same person visiting from two different computers will count as two Unique Visitors. (

URL: is a type of Uniform Resource Identifier (URI) that specifies where an identified resource is available and the mechanism for retrieving it. In popular usage and in many technical documents and verbal discussions it is often, imprecisely and confusingly, used as a synonym for uniform resource identifier. The confusion in usage stems from historically different interpretations of the semantics of the terms involved. In popular language, a URL is also referred to as a Web address.(

Visitor Session: A Visitor Session is a defined period of interaction between a Visitor (both unique and untrackable visitor types) and a website.(

Comparison shopping: Comparison shopping clearly goes beyond comparing prices. Finding the cheapest items doesn’t usually take a great deal of effort. However, finding the best quality items for the least amount of money is another story. This is one of the reasons that comparison shopping is becoming an industry of its own.(

Topic 3

1.Customer centric websites are vital to orgnisations because once the customer is on the site they are able to buy or just leave the site. If the website is interesting for the customer they are likely to look around the site and view your products and services and even come back. For this to be achieved the site needs to be easy to navigate from the home page through to product sales, location of stores and contact information.

Customers are time poor and want to find what they are looking for fast. So businesses need to know what to put on the website to attract customers. Less is better because items are easier to find, customers don’t want to be wasting their time looking for the product they want. Customer centric websites are becoming so important that it is extremely important for it to be designed on a customer basis.

2. Presence: ensuring you have an immediate, engaging and lasting impression. Customers cannot buy your product if they cannot find it.

Like the physical world a business wants customers to keep coming back to their site which can be achieved through design, easy navigation, how long it takes to download and new content.

Businesses on the web should be concerned about businesses that operate in the physical world because they need the web to interact with customers. In saying this, businesses with a physical presence should also be concerned with the web based businesses because more and more people are shopping online.

3. Real estate agents can gain a lot through the use of the internet. Obviously the listing of all their properties is the main advantage but how long would it take to find the property you are looking for? easy clients can use a search to minimise the number of properties that most suits them. Virtual tours can be available as well as more pictures that you cannot use in a newspaper.

Mass media advertising is important for real estate agents because it provides them with access to people who do not have access to the internet. Newspapers, T.V and radio are the main areas you will find real estate agents advertising their properties to access as many people as possible.
Personal contact for the agent is important because it provides a relationship between the agent and the client. The agent is integral to the sale of the property between seller and buyer and this is why the personal contact is so important.