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									Additional Projects and Exercises from 5th Edition

Project 1: What Happened to That Trend?

Choose one of the major e-commerce trends identified in Table 1.1 on pages 8-9, and find a
current article that relates to your choice. What insight can you derive from the article with
respect to the trend? Prepare a short report or presentation summarizing your findings.

Project 2: Make It Your Own
Review the section on personalization/customization on page 17 and then find two Web sites
that employ personalization or customization techniques. In what ways do the sites use these
techniques? Prepare a short report or presentation summarizing your findings.

Project 3: Joost
Visit Prepare a short report that describes what you find there. What Web 2.0
applications and techniques does Joost use? Prepare a short report or presentation summarizing
your findings.

Project 4: What Can Yahoo Learn About You?
Review Insight on Society: Holding On To Your Privacy Online, on pages 46-49, and in particular,
the list of information that Google collects. Then visit Yahoo!, and try to identify what
information Yahoo can collect via its various online offerings. Prepare a short report or
presentation summarizing your findings.


Project 1: Mix and Match: E-commerce Revenue Models
Table 2.2 on page 70 lists five categories of primary revenue models. Using the Internet, find
another e-commerce company that fits each category. Explain why the selected company fits the
category in which you placed it. Prepare a table to summarize your research.

Project 2: Investigating Business Models
Table 2.3 on page 76 lists a variety of different business models. Choose one category and find
an additional company that fits that category. Explain why the company you chose fits the
category. Prepare a table to summarize your research.

Project 3: Google Google
Insight on Technology: Search Ads, and Apps: The Future for Google (And Microsoft) on pages
78-80 describes the Google search engine. Compare Google's home page today with the
screenshot on page 79, and describe the features, if any, that Google has added since the
textbook was published. Click the About Google link, where you can find more information about
the new features that Google is offering. Also make sure to visit the Google Labs page. What do
the new features suggest about Google's attempt to improve its site? Review articles that
analyze Google's finances since October 2008, and summarize the current news about Google.
Will Google maintain its dominance as the premier Internet search engine or not? Present your
conclusions in a short report or presentation.

Project 4: Who’s That Texting You?
Insight on Society: Is Privacy Possible in a Wireless World on pages 96-97 discusses both the
enhanced public safety and potential threats to personal privacy that can accompany new
technologies for locating cell-phone users. Review the latest developments in cell phone privacy
and summarize those developments in a short report or presentation.


Project 1: E-mail Timeline
Prepare a timeline on the history and development of e-mail. You can explore the following links
for background to get started:

Project 2: Digging into Internet2
Explore the Internet2 Project. Choose an initiative (you can find a list at and explore it further. You can find a lot of valuable
information on Internet2’s Internet2 Information kit page at Prepare a short report or presentation on your

Project 3: Does the iPhone Change Everything?
Investigate the impact of Apple’s iPhone, T-Mobile’s Android G1, and other 3G smart phones on
the growth of mobile e-commerce. In what ways are e-commerce firms using these phones to
offer products and services? Surf the Web to find at least three examples and prepare a short
report or presentation on your findings.


Project 1: Choosing a Web Host
Investigate Web hosting services. What do these web-hosting services provide (e.g. how much
storage space and how many e-mail accounts do they provide)? Go to Google and search under
"Web hosting services". Some sites to visit include Rackspace, Verio and Network Solutions.
Prepare a chart comparing the features offered by at least two services. Which would you
choose, and why?

Project 2: Right-Sizing a Hardware Platform
You have been asked to CIO of to help right-size’s hardware
platform. Visit the Web site to see what you can learn, then create a table
similar to Table 4.7 on page 227.

Project 3: Optimizing Your Web Site
Investigate site management programs such as Webtrends, Google Analytics, Visistat and
Omniture. What are the costs for such programs? What are their capabilities? How are they
useful? Which would you choose, and why? Prepare a short report or presentation on your


Project 1: Is This Safe?
Visit Amazon, MSNBC, and Monster and find and read the pages on each site that discuss
security. Then, prepare a 2-3 page report in which you discuss the security features and policies
of these Web sites. How do they attempt to keep your personal information from being stolen?
What aspects of the policies do or do not give you confidence as a consumer? What makes you
wary of giving personal information such as a credit card number to an online store or service?

Project 2: Dangerous Software
The section on poorly designed server and client software in the text on pages 282-283
highlights the impact that such software has on security. The National Vulnerability Database
compiles comprehensive data on software vulnerabilities it identifies. Use the Vulnerability
Search Engine to search for software flaws from five vendors (such as Microsoft, Apple, Google,
or another firm) during the last three months Using this data, create a column chart using Excel
or another program to illustrate the trends in software vulnerabilities identified during that time.
What conclusions can you draw from this data?

Project 3: Tigers at Work
Search the Web for articles on "tiger teams." Find an article that showcases how a company or
organization has used a tiger team successfully to improve the security of its Web site, intranet,
or network. Present your findings to your class in the form of a presentation or report.

Project 4: E-commerce Payment Systems
Choose a retail category (such as apparel, software, books, etc.) and visit at least five
companies in that category. Prepare a table summarizing the different payment methods offered
by the companies you visited.

Project 5: Using Credit Cards Online
Ellen Longbow is the chief financial officer (CFO) at a startup e-commerce firm that sells
products popular with college students. She has asked you to do some Internet research on
three competing companies that permit credit-card purchases at their e-commerce sites. Create
a table (or spreadsheet) that summarizes how each site handles the following issues: (a) What
information does each site require before permitting you to use a credit card? (b) What steps
must you go through to complete a transaction? (c) What features do they incorporate to
facilitate overcoming the limits of security, merchant risk, cost, etc.? (d) How do they
authenticate cardholder identities?


Project 3: Comparison Shopping
Choose your favorite DVD, video game, or a book, and obtain prices at five different Web sites.
Calculate a mean price and standard deviation using an Excel spreadsheet. Why do you think
prices are higher at some Web sites? Are consumers paying more for added value? What is the
added value that they are paying for?

Project 4: Searching for Bugs
Is there a way for people to know if their e-mail has hidden Web bugs? Do a search on the Web
to discover more information about Web bugs. Then, go to a Web site and turn on your View
Source option and see if you can find a Web bug on the Web page you are visiting or within a
commercial e-mail sent to you.

Project 5: Advertising Networks
Go to a major Web advertising firm such as Doubleclick or 24/7 Real Media, and explore new
products it is offering to marketers. What are its capabilities? Compare the company’s offerings
to one other major advertising network. Present the offerings of both networks to the class.

Project 1: YouTube Video Advertisements
Visit the Sponsors page on YouTube. View at least five videos and then prepare a short report
or presentation that describes the videos you watched and their effectiveness as advertising

Project 2: The Name Game
Come up with an idea for a new business that will sell a product or service on the Web and then
attempt to find a "good" domain name for the business. (You can check the availability of
domain names at Network Solutions. How difficult was it to find a "good" domain name? How
many names did you try before you were able to find one that was available? Evaluate the
strengths and weaknesses of the name you ultimately chose in terms of the criteria for a good
domain name on page 463-464.

Project 3: Advertising Your Web Site
You have secured a domain name and established a Web site for the company you began
planning in Project 2. Now its time to advertise your products and services online. Find five Web
sites that would be appropriate places for you to advertise and investigate the advertising
options they provide (see Table 7.9 on page 463 for possible pricing options you might find).
Then create a spreadsheet summarizing your findings and choose 2 sites on which you will
advertise from among the five, explaining the reasons for your choices.

Project 4: Kid Web
Visit 5 Web sites that are designed to appeal to children. Examine the types of advertisements
and other forms of marketing communications you see there. Are they appropriate for the age
group for which the site is targeted? Do you see any advertisements that you think are
inappropriate? Does the site comply with COPPA? Prepare a short report or presentation
detailing your findings.

Project 5: Invasive Marketing
The case study in Chapter 7 examines ad bombs, ambush marketing and other invasive
marketing techniques. Prepare a short report or presentation examining what has happened in
this area during the past year. Are these techniques becoming more prevalent or less prevalent?
Are there any new techniques that are being used? What, if anything, is being done to prevent
online users from being ambushed by invasive marketing techniques?


Project 1: Have You Been Targeted?
(1) Create a new e-mail account at MSN or Yahoo. For three days, surf your normal Web sites,
always starting at the Web site you used to create your new e-mail account. Record the types of
advertisements you see. (2) For the next three days, visit several Web sites that promote and/or
sell a product/service that does not interest you but which you view as harmless (e.g., beach
vacations, even though you never enjoy the beach). (3) After the second three days, return to
your normal Web sites, and record the kind of advertisements you now see. Compare and
contrast the new advertisements with those in the first stage of this project. How have your
visits regarding a product/service that does not interest you influenced the new advertising that
you see? Present your findings in a short report or PowerPoint presentation. (Feel free to include
advertisements in your report/presentation to illustrate your results.)

Project 3: Using an Online Career Service

     Prepare a resume for yourself using any word processing program.
     Visit two of the online career services Web sites mentioned in this chapter (Yahoo Hot
          Jobs;,, etc). Consult the resume-writing help sections of
          these sites for suggestions on how you can improve the resume you have created.
       Edit your resume as necessary based on what you have read.
       Conduct a job search on both sites you have chosen for an entry-level position in a field
          that interests you.
       Visit and use the Salary Wizard to calculate the salary you could expect to
          earn from that position (some career sites may include a link to the Salary Wizard).
       Return to your word processing program and compose a cover letter that would
          accompany your resume if you were applying for the position you found in your search.
          Include a mention of your salary requirements in the letter.

Project 4: Using the Net to Find the Least Expensive Flight
You will be flying from New York to Seattle on business once a month for the next six months.
Your objective is to find the airline that, on average, has the least expensive non-stop,
economy/coach, round-trip flight. Select an online travel service (see Table 9.11 on page 609 for
suggestions) and search for a ticket on the desired route leaving on the 15th of each of the next
six months and returning on the 20th of the same month. Compile the information you find in a
spreadsheet, plotting the cost of a ticket for at least three airlines in each of the next six
months. Then calculate the average cost of a ticket over the six-month period for each of the
airlines you have used. Finally, display your results as a column chart on the spreadsheet.

Project 5: Banking Online
You are a recent college graduate about to begin your career as an Account Executive in the
Advertising Department of newspaper with a popular Web site. Since you are just starting out,
your own financial resources are limited. However, you need to open a new checking account
because you had previously kept your money at a small bank near your college. You have
approximately $2,000 saved and will be earning an annual income of $28,000. Since you will be
paying many of your bills online, you anticipate writing fewer than ten checks per month. Visit at
least three of the online banking sites listed in Table 9.7 on page 594. Then select the bank you
think would be best for your new checking account. Take into account that you want to use
online banking but still be near a physical branch. You also want to avoid monthly fees,
minimum balance fees, and excessive ATM fees. Prepare a two-page report that details the
factors that contributed to your decision. Make sure you answer the following questions in your

    1. Why is the bank you chose the best choice for your particular situation?
    2. What does the bank you chose offer that the others did not?
    3. How much did the actual Web site of the bank you chose influence your decision in
       comparison with the information it provided?
    4. What could change about your situation that would cause you to consider switching

Project 1: Free vs. Fee
Conduct a survey in which you ask participants the following question: If your favorite Web site
switched from free content to a subscription format costing $9.50 per month, would you pay the
fee to continue using the site? If the answer is no, ask them what price, if any, they would be
willing to pay. Also ask the participants why they answered yes or no and make note of their
responses to this question. Your survey should include at least 20 subjects. Once you have
compiled data for at least 20 subjects, plot the data on an Excel worksheet and illustrate the
Yes/No data with a column chart. Then write a 1-2 page report that summarizes the data,
including the reasons why participants answered yes or no.

Project 2: Pay Per View/Download
Find a Web site that follows the pay-per-view/pay-for-download revenue for the majority or all
of its content. Prepare a presentation that explains why you think this particular site will or will
not be successful. If you think the site will be successful, include ideas about what factors it
should be careful of in order to maintain its success. If you think the site will be unsuccessful,
present ideas that the site could use to improve its prospects.

Project 3: Movie Pirates
Write a newspaper or magazine-style article on the topic of digital piracy in the film industry.
What are the major forces behind the pirated movie business? What are the major film
production studios and distributors doing to combat piracy? What damage has the film industry
suffered as a result of piracy? To what extent has the Internet increased movie piracy?

Project 4: Kindle vs. Sony Reader
Gather information about the Kindle and Sony Reader and create a chart comparing the two
devices. Which do you prefer and why?

Project 5: Apple TV: The Next Big Thing?
Investigate Apple TV. Do you think it will be as successful as iTunes and the iPhone? Why or
why not? Team up with a classmate and prepare for a debate on the issue.

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