SOFTWARE & SERVICESQUICKBOOKS GOES OPEN SOURCE
Intuit Inc. has announced that users will soon be able to run its QuickBooks Enterprise Solutions mid-market accounting software on servers running the Linux open-source operating system. The new, free Linux Database Server Manager application will allow QuickBooks Enterprise to operate on Linux servers. Previously, companies running on Linux had to have a separate Windows server to house the QBE database.
AccuFund Inc. has introduced an online accounting solution for nonprofits with all of the functionality of its AccuFund Accounting Suite. AccuFund Hosted starts at $289.80 a month for one user, and users can apply some of the subscription cost to the later purchase of the on-site software suite.
For The Tax Collectors
Take your choice: Governments can be efficient, and collect every penny in tax you owe, or inefficient, and harass you for taxes you don't owe or have already paid. Oracle has obviously chosen efficiency, with the release of its Oracle Enterprise Taxation Management software suite. With it, tax and revenue authorities can get a single, unified view of each taxpayer by consolidating information from various legacy systems, thus streamlining billing and collection, revenue generation and tracking, and compliance.
Kaplan CPA Review has released its 2007/08 Learning Systems for CPA Exam review. In addition to blending textbooks, video and audio CDs, online learning, and flashcards, Kaplan's Learning Systems come with its Activity Planner, which lets users keep track of their studies and make sure they completely cover the curriculum before the exam. Kaplan also offers volume discounts for businesses, government agencies, students and accounting societies.
www.kaplancpareview.com; (800) CPA-2DAY
FUN WITH REVENUE
Ordinarily, playing games with your revenue is a risky venture, but we (and the SEC) will make an exception for the Revenue Recognition Challenge, an online game from RevenueRecognition.com, a Web site that seeks to educate finance professionals on revenue management and related issues. Players take the role of the chief financial officer of Worldwide Faulty Enterprises and try to negotiate investors, auditors, chief executives and all the other impediments that make corporate finance so miserable, all while trying to build revenue and drive up their stock. Important lessons on how different situations call for different recognition decisions, keeping up with business events and forecasting are snuck in to make it all worthwhile. Just remember - don't try this at the office, kids.
Honestly, is there anything worse than spreadsheets? They are unwieldy, crash-prone and, as we're now learning, easily manipulated and susceptible to fraud. Financial and regulatory risk software developer Compassoft can help with those last two, as its applications can analyze spreadsheets for irregularities and breaks in security that have already occurred, and prevent new ones with an authorization system that tracks and attributes changes.
TAX CENTER UPDATES
Lexis Nexis has added International GAAP 2007 from the International Financial Reporting Group of Ernst & Young to its Tax Center online research platform, including the full text of every International Financial Reporting Standard and a set of model IFRS financial statements. Tax Center has also added an authoritative analysis of the recent FIN 48 standard.
A NICE PLACE TO THINK
While the "lone genius" is often mythologized as a font of innovation, one need only consider Plato's Academy, the salons of 18th-Century France, Xerox PARC and the New Products Department to realize that brilliance can just as often emerge from groups and networks. Smart World examines the underappreciated power of these "idea-spaces" to foster breakthroughs.
Using examples from the worlds of business, art, science and more, the book explains the rules of navigating what it calls the "extended mind," and outlines a new "science of ideas" that can help you get beyond the cutting edge into the realm of creation.
Harvard Business School Press; $29.95
FINDING YOUR ESTATE
The first step in estate planning is locating the estate itself, whether it's in the Hamptons, a brokerage account, or those mason jars in the basement. Get It Together: Organize Your Records So Your Family Won't Have To is an excellent primer on arranging your financial paperwork in an order that normal human beings can understand - you might consider giving it to your new estate planning clients, before they show up with shoeboxes and jars of invaluable wheat-ear pennies.
Do not, however, give your clients copies of The Busy Family's Guide to Estate Planning or Make Your Own Living Trust, as they will then no longer need you. The first offers an easy 10-step guide to covering a family's estate planning needs, and the second tells them everything they need to know to create the kind of trust that you'd charge a lot more for.
Nolo; Together - $21.99, Busy Family - $24.99, Living Trust - $39.99
BUT YOUR HONOR!
The only legal advice we can offer employers is to memorize the following sentence: "I never touched her/him/the money." While it covers a lot of situations, it doesn't cover all of them, for which you'll want to consult The Employer's Legal Advisor, which shows managers and human resource professionals how to operate in such a manner that they'll never need our sentence - and should they be tempted, the book also shows them how and when to work with a competent attorney, so they won't.
Amacon Books; $24
ALSO IN PRINT
CCH has released a new white paper on the recent reforms to the Sarbanes-Oxley Section 404 internal controls regime (www.cch.com/press/news/2007/cchwhitepaper-internalcontrols.pdf). ... Accounting Best Practices, 5th Ed. (John Wiley & Sons; $75) ... The Complete Guide to Executive Compensation (McGraw-Hill).
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