It's All in the Eyes I enjoyed reading your article called "Betting on Biometrics." (FutureBanker, June 1997). There is no question that biometrics is going to happen soon in many applications. You might be interested to know that there are already ATMs in the field using our face recognition technology called TrueFace. You can read all about it at our Web site (www.miros.com). -Michael Kuperstein, CEO, Miros, Inc. I just finished reading your article on biometrics. I have been trying to follow this industry, but it does not have extensive coverage from the big brokerage houses. Do you have any suggestions as to how I can better research the industry and its major players? -Bob Wordelmann, Fleet Bank Editor Responds: Contact the following research and consulting firms: The Tower Group, Newton, MA; Gartner Group, Stamford, CT; Boston Consulting Group, Boston; and IDC, Framingham, MA. You could also call analysts at Frost & Sullivan, Mountain View, CA, and Carmody & Bloom, Ridgewood, NJ; or try "Biometric Technology Today" (www.sjb.co.uk), or Biometric Tracking LLC (www.sound.net/- biotrack). Privacy Please Your commentary ("Farewell to Privacy for the Sake of Electronic Commerce," FutureBanker, June 1997) touches on an item of interest for many; privacy is certainly a "hot-button" for me. The proposal that companies provide disclosure of information- gathering and dissemination policies sounds like an excellent ideaowhy not apply it to other than electronic commerce as well? And yes, I have deliberately provided false information if the legitimate need for it wasn't readily apparentoother than adding me to another mail or call list. -Name Withheld, Bank of America Small Business Heats Up The article "Banks Losing 60% of Market Dollars to Nonbanks" in the June 1997 issue of FutureBanker was a very informative and well- written article for the finance and banking industry. Would it be possible to get a copy of the BAI study? -Dan Shuntich, vp of corporate analysis, The Associates Editor Responds: "Unlocking Winning Strategies to Serve Small Businesses" can be obtained by calling 800-224-9889, or via the Internet (www.bai.org). Tech Takes Center Stage I appreciate your work in both Management Strategies and FutureBanker, which is helping me as I struggle to understand the technology of the financial services industry. I have long feltoabout 10 yearsothat the excitement in the financial services industry is found in the development and uses of technology. And while I am not a trained technologist and often struggle to follow the lingo, I am steadfast in my belief and, thus, find your publications of particular value. You have readers who are interested in your personal insight as changes creep through the industry. -Jim Loveridge, svp-retail annuity marketing, ARM Financial Group Another great job! Your commentary on IT spending ("Assessing the Cost of Investment in IT," FutureBanker, July 1997) reminds me of Alan Greenspan's remarks at the Chicago Fed Restructuring conference earlier this year. He said that the way for smaller banks to prosper was to abandon hopes of competing via technology and instead concentrate on excellent, personal customer service. Indeed, most banking and finance executives equate technology with large, centrally managed systems, requiring hundreds of millions of dollars in investment and maintenance. While Greenspan is right about emphasizing excellent personal service, he misses the power of Moore's Law (computing power doubles and costs halve every 18 months), Metcalf's Law (usefulness of networks grows exponentially), and Gates's Law (information will become ubiquitous). We believe that increasing computer power and bandwidth and growing information ubiquity can be exploited now to provide excellent service and make money. And that is what your FutureBanker is all about. -Craig Elderkin, partner, banking & finance, Diamond Technology Partners
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