Here are the influential voices leading the conversations where nonprofits and technology overlap.
Since 2011, we've shined a spotlight on the best and brightest voices in business and IT blogging with our annual Must-Read IT Blogs list. The blogs that make up these lists are diverse as they can range from major media blogs to vendor blogs to independent bloggers.
By the time the nominations round closed, we had a total of 66 blogs nominated and 2,121 votes cast.
After poring over the nominations and gathering a few good blogs from our own research, we've compiled a list of all-star blogs that we hope you'll find worthy of including in your favorites or bookmark folder.
Please enjoy the 2013 BizTech Must-Read IT Blogs below. If your blog is one of this year's honorees, be sure to grab a badge to share the news with your readers.
The days of jocks and geeks living in completely separate worlds are officially over. With tablets taking over for paper playbooks, and social media becoming a core component of a team’s fan management, the geeks are here to stay. SportTechie covers all angles of the intersection between sports and technology.
MUST-READ POST: This exclusive interview with MLB's social-media head honcho, Josh Lukin.
Normally, it would be an insult to say that someone has his head in the clouds, but in the case of the team over at CloudTweaks, it’s actually a compliment. CloudTweaks aggressively and prolifically covers the cloud industry from all levels of business, making it a great resource for those looking to keep their fingers on the pulse of the cloud industry.
MUST-READ POST: Mythbusters: The cloud computing edition.
The effects of digestive starvation are known, but have you ever stopped to think about how hungry your brain might be? On his blog, Richie Etwaru, a leader in design thinking, organizational transformation, innovation, and thought leadership, offers up tasty morsels for your cerebrum.
MUST-READ POST: Etwaru on why Big Data will go the renaming route of Prince.
The name might imply insanity, but Brian Katz’s blog actually brings much-needed sanity to the madness of mobility. As head of mobility engineering at pharmaceutical company Sanofi, Katz knows all too well the pain points of making mobile work in the enterprise. In addition to his blog, Katz hosts a weekly exchange on mobility in business on Twitter through the #mobilebiz hashtag.
MUST-READ POST: Katz's Kanye West–inspired take on the current state of BYOD.
The key to success with mobility isn’t just in handing out devices; it’s in the strategy. Research firm the Sepharim Group offers organizations informative tidbits on how mobility can and should work for their companies. Led by veteran analyst Bob Egan, who is the original Gartner wireless VP and a member of the team that created the IEEE 802.11 WLAN standard, the Sepharim Group often posts insightful conversations on the evolution of mobile business.
MUST-READ POST: 6 Tips for CIOs looking to make the most of mobile.
When it comes to understanding the intricate relationship between social media and business, Brian Solis wrote the book — literally. As the principal at research firm Altimeter Group, Solis is often regarded as the authority on social business. With the trends pointing toward the growing influence of social media in business, you might want to snag his words of wisdom for yourself.
MUST-READ POST: This LOL-worthy interview with Shaquille O'Neal on technology, startups and social media.
As a veteran IT executive, Chuck Hollis has earned his stripes. He worked at EMC for 18 years but recently moved over to VMware as a chief strategist for the virtualization company’s storage and application services business unit. Chuck’s blog offers insights, theories and big ideas on all things IT.
MUST-READ POST: Chuck's thorough take on the future of storage technology.
Every pilot needs a trusty co-pilot. Or, at the very least, a decent piloting manual. On his blog, PwC principal Chris Curran offers CIOs useful leadership advice, insights and strategies to innovate within and outside their organizations. As a contributor to various publications including CIO Insight, the Financial Times, the Wall Street Journal and many more, Curran’s take on all things IT is highly regarded.
MUST-READ POST: Curran's take on defining digital disruptors.
As IT infrastructures head to the cloud and become more service-oriented, Gartner analyst Lydia Leong keeps track of the latest and greatest shifts in the industry. Her ability to tackle the complex, layered issues within the cloud industry are essential for any business looking to understand key players and strategies.
MUST-READ POST: Leong's dismantling of the zero-downtime myth.
With more than 12 years of IT experience under his belt, Anoop C. Nair knows his way around a data center. His wealth of expertise even earned him recognition with a Microsoft Community Contributor Award. Anoop’s blog highlights straightforward, no-nonsense tips on IT infrastructure management and optimization.
MUST-READ POST: This massive list of ConfigMgr 2012 SP1's 541 default reports.
As senior mobile strategist at Microsoft, Rob Tiffany digs into mobile technology at various levels on his blog. As one of the generals in Microsoft’s mobile division, Tiffany is a full-throated advocate for the Windows Phone and the Windows RT ecosystems. Heck, he’s even willing to throw down a Rocky reference or two in the name of Windows.
MUST-READ POST: Tiffany notices that rugged device users are digging Windows tablets.
Led by Microsoft evangelist Keith Mayer, the IT Pros ROCK! blog doles out tactical advice and tips that IT pros can use. The blog leans heavily on the virtualization and cloud-infrastructure side of IT, so if you’re interested in understanding the building blocks of service-oriented IT, Mayer’s blog can help turn you into a rock star.
MUST-READ POST: This step-by-step guide to building a SharePoint dev/test lab in Windows Azure.
While some in technology prefer a top-down approach to IT, Jeff Sussna, of virtual IT consultancy Ingineering.IT, believes in putting the user first. His blog offers DevOps professionals a much-needed point of view beyond programming and helps translate the value of IT to the business.
MUST-READ POST: Sussna's story of how a revamp of his bank's website gave him an epiphany.
If you’ve ever dipped a toe into the waters of mobile business, you’ve probably heard of Benjamin Robbins, a principal at consulting firm Palador. Over the past few years, he has turned himself into a lean, mean mobile machine. He’s contributed to BizTech, the Guardian and the Enterprise Mobility Forum. More recently, Robbins was tapped to deliver the keynote at the Mastering SAP for Mobility conference in Australia.
MUST-READ POST: Robbins pulls no punches on why he thinks smartwatches aren't the next big thing.
If storage IT had an all-star bench, Hitachi’s Hu Yoshida would be on it. His blog offers thoroughly technical explanations and insights on the storage industry at nearly every level. If debates about SSDs versus HDDs get your blood flowing, this blog’s for you.
MUST-READ POST: This detailed explanation on the role of software in SSDs.
No, this isn’t a blog about how to secure your company’s iPhones and Android devices. IBM technical specialist Prashant Chandramohan educates readers on the benefits of the other MDM: master data management software.
MUST-READ POST: This post on making MDM better with Big Data.
In nature, clouds might come out of thin air, but in IT they have to be built. The Microsoft team’s Building Clouds blog offers resources and advice on building cloud infrastructures for IT workers using Windows. There are plenty of screen shots and detailed instructions that make it a breeze to follow the blog’s suggestions.
MUST-READ POST: This detailed guide to building a failover cluster on a couple of notebooks.
Mobile enterprise adoption expert Daniel DiMassa has carved out a unique IT topic for himself by focusing on the needs and the challenges of building and maintaining enterprise mobile apps. But he doesn’t rely exclusively on his own expertise; he interviews “IT rock stars,” like Intel IT CTO Ed Goldman, too.
MUST-READ POST: DiMassa has rounded up a growing collection of mobile enterprise app memes.
In the scrappy world of small business, figuring out the ins and outs of IT can sometimes leave the business owner or the IT team feeling like they’re up a creek without a paddle. Small business IT expert Sharon Bennett is the paddle that you’re looking for, and with her 15-plus years of small-business IT experience, she’ll guide you safely to shore.
MUST-READ POST: Bennett's tale of a server setup gone horribly wrong will make you laugh and send chills up your spine.
“Disruption” is one of those buzzwords that make people in IT either really scared or really excited. Greyhound Research CEO and chief analyst Sanchit Vir Gogia spotlights innovation and disruption in Indian IT on his blog, and with his history as an analyst for Forrester and IDC, he’s able to pinpoint trouble spots with ease.
MUST-READ POST: This list of questions CIOs often ask about cloud security.
The struggle between man and machine rages on, but consulting firm Mind Over Machines has claimed victory over the robots and algorithms. The firm’s blog shows off the team’s smarts in project management, innovation and leadership.
MUST-READ POST: This guide to getting rid of the old and inviting the new.
As an expert in “virtualization whispering,” Chris Wahl takes a unique approach to blogging about IT. As a VMware expert, he’s certainly got IT chops, but Wahl doesn’t take himself too seriously. Case in point: His bio page has a Simpsons-esque version of himself.
MUST-READ POST: This amazing post where Clippy explains software-defined networking.
Do you speak geek? So does the team behind the Geek Speak blog, which is part of the Thwack IT community. The blog highlights real-world scenarios that IT workers face everyday. So the next time you’re facing a fried server and a failed backup, it might help to consult a blog that speaks your language.
MUST-READ POST: The danger of USB flash drives and data loss.
While it’s true that mobile technology is fast becoming the norm in many companies, it’s also true that mobile users could still use some guidance on how to navigate this brave new mobile world. The team at Visage Mobile offers IT leaders valuable news and advice on all things mobility.
MUST-READ POST: Why executives shouldn't fire employees with a text message.
Taming data center IT is not a task for the faint of heart, but Mark Thiele, an executive in the data-center industry, attacks challenges in the data center with gusto. His approach to blogging relies strongly on busting myths and shaking up conventional thinking.
MUST-READ POST: Thiele urges IT workers to stop focusing so much on server power consumption.
As the fastest growing segment of client computing, mobile computing is on nearly everyone’s mind. InfoWeek executive editor Galen Gruman keeps up with the ever-shifting sands in mobile technology while also providing key insights into how the mobile landscape is evolving.
MUST-READ POST: Galen pleads with IT workers to free the users and just secure the data.
Android fans come in all shapes, sizes and professions, and Jeffrey Taylor, who owns and operates his own law firm in Oklahoma, is so invested in Google’s mobile OS that he might bleed green if you nick him. For legal IT professionals looking for a solid, reliable source on Android devices, Taylor’s blog is a must-read.
MUST-READ POST: Taylor's clear, concise Google I/O summary for lawyers.
Named “one of America’s best young entrepreneurs” by BusinessWeek, Ben Casnocha offers thoughtful advice on startups, entrepreneurship, technology and leadership. Casnocha’s blog is a must-read for those looking to dig into the deeper philosophies that define how we work and the way we work.
MUST-READ POST: Casnocha bursts the bubble on Steve Jobs' beloved walking meetings.
The name of the site sounds like a menacing war machine, but Technodrone actually covers the virtualization industry. Maish Saidel-Keesing, a vExpert and a moderator on the VMware forum committees, runs the blog, covers conferences and highlights useful tips for VMware solutions.
MUST-READ POST: This post highlighting virtual-machine security issues, which magically ends with a mock up of vCenter with Pong built into it.
Microsoft has many fans, and Windows Observer caters to IT pros who want to stay up to date on the company’s latest software and hardware solutions, including Windows 8, Windows Phone and Windows Server. Richard Hay, a Navy vet with a telecommunications background, mans the ship.
MUST-READ POST: Hay investigates Instagram's missing-in-action Windows Phone app.
Keeping up with the innovations and evolutions of the dynamic virtualization industry is no small feat, but it’s a task that VMBlog.com founder David Marshall does with pride and gusto. His site aggressively rounds up the latest information in the virtualization industry by aggregating headlines and press releases.
MUST-READ POST: Their show coverage from VMworld 2013.
The twists and turns of malware and IT security are enough to make anyone’s head spin — even Alice’s. Thankfully, Rafal Los, strategic security services principal at HP, is here to hold our hands and guide us through the dark and scary maze. He covers IT security myths, best practices and more on his enterprise-security blog. For readers looking for a blog on information security that’s relatable, concise and useful, hold on to this rabbit’s foot.
MUST-READ POST: Los advocates a saner approach to mobile security.
Peter Kretzman, an IT veteran and one-time vice president of information technology for WatchGuard Technologies, has spent considerable time as an IT chief, both as a chief technology officer and a chief information officer. So he’s intimately familiar with the challenges IT leaders face in guiding their organizations down the right path. His blog shares these insights with the broader world and raises valuable debates about the future of these roles.
MUST-READ POST: Kretzman's compelling piece on why it matters that CMOs are outspending CIOs on technology.
While the world of IT might be considered a bit of a data circus, systems administrators are the ringleaders helping to make sense of the ever-changing technology workflows, tools and resources required to run a modern business. Philip Sellers is a senior systems administrator, a Microsoft-certified IT professional and a VMware expert. His blog, Tech Talk, offers insights and tips that IT workers can easily apply to their companies.
MUST-READ POST: Sellers highlights one-liners that any IT pro can use.
If you work in an IT shop that has yet to venture into the services side, these real-world accounts of life in the cloud will give you a decent taste of what it’s like. As part of IDG’s CITE World hub, this blog is all about exposing the realities of enterprise technology in ways that are meaningful for both the user and the IT worker.
MUST-READ POST: This account of how Box helped make a merger easier.
With an eye for small-business IT woes, Philip Elder is an IT everyman. While he’s most experienced with Microsoft’s server software, Elder’s also been a ditch digger, a mechanic and a carpenter. And you thought you had a well-rounded education.
MUST-READ POST: Elder's handy-dandy SBS 2011 Migration guide.
Brian Lewis, a Microsoft technology evangelist, spends a lot of time thinking about IT, as his blog title suggests. The good news is that he also spends a lot of time writing about IT. His blog highlights tips, tricks and ideas that can help IT workers save the day.
MUST-READ POST: In case you're paranoid about the NSA's prying eyes, Lewis teaches IT workers how to permanently delete files in Windows environments.
Bob Plankers, a virtualization and cloud architect for the University of Wisconsin–Madison, isn’t a sheriff in real life, but he plays one in IT. As a recognized VMware vExpert, Plankers has encountered countless “information-technology outlaws,” as he calls them. Readers interested in virtualization and general IT should saddle up and ride with the Lone Sysadmin.
MUST-READ POST: Plankers lays down the law on silly, counterproductive April Fools' pranks.
After more than 15 years in the business, IT security vendor Tripwire has amassed a wealth of knowledge and insights. The company puts its brainpower to good use by having their employees blog about news, trends and surveys related to all manner of IT security and does so in a way that’s refreshingly approachable and readable.
MUST-READ POST: This humorous video series in which John Powers, an imaginary CISO, is suspected of being an alien.
IT instructor and Microsoft MVP Mitch Garvis must have been a sage in another life, because his words of wisdom in IT impart calm, understanding and ease. Or maybe he’s good at sounding like a teacher because he’s worked in IT training for so long. Whatever the case may be, Garvis’ blog highlights personal and professional life lessons that any IT worker can benefit from.
MUST-READ POST: Garvis gently nudges a peer to leap from Windows 7 to Windows 8.
Have you ever thought about the toll that technology takes on your psyche? Alex Soojung-Kim Pang, a senior consultant at Strategic Business Insights, might seem like an antitechnologist at first blush, but he’s actually more an advocate for thoughtfulness and balance in technology. Check out his blog for a more cerebral approach to IT.
MUST-READ POST: Pang explains how aggressive app pushing hurts the user.
Coming to you straight from Silicon Valley, Raj Sabhlok, president of ManageEngine and Zoho.com, takes an innovation-first approach to talking about technology in his blog hosted on Forbes.com. He covers general topics in IT, including security, mobility and the cloud.
MUST-READ POST: Sabhlock sticks up for the IT guy/gal.
InfoWorld’s Bill Snyder really has a way of cutting to the chase. Case in point: “IT certifications are finally helping your paycheck again” is the headline of one of his recent articles. It’s this blunt, straightforward manner that makes Snyder’s blog such a pleasure to read. Check out his blog so you, too, can better read between the lines in IT.
MUST-READ POST: Snyder deals a mighty blow to patent trolls that plague the mobile industry.
Like recording artists and record-label executives, entrepreneurs and their venture capital backers often live life on the opposite sides of the tracks. Mark Suster, however, has earned his entrepreneurial stripes, having launched and sold two of his own startups before joining Upfront Ventures as a general partner. If you’re looking for a VC with the perspective of a startup founder, Suster’s got the right touch.
MUST-READ POST: Suster's high-level view of the importance of collaboration and where it's heading.
If you believe the world could be a much better place, you’re in luck: So does IBM! The iconic technology company assembles some of its best and brightest minds to write about big ideas in big industries. Sports, agriculture, retail — nothing is beyond the transformative reach of IT and Big Data.
MUST-READ POST: IBM researcher Lloyd Treinish explains how Big Data drives his team's innovative weather predictions.
Brian Madden has built a brand around both his name and his expertise in desktop virtualization. Going strong for 15 years now, the community that Brian has built plays host to thoughtful conversations about enterprise IT and the future of work.
MUST-READ POST: This post that investigates whether BYOD will save companies money in the end.
As an active board member of the Electronic Frontier Foundation and a contributing columnist to Wired magazine, IT security guru Bruce Schneier doesn’t skate by on the legacy of his past achievements. A well-respected authority on cryptography, Schneier weighs in on all things security on his blog. Note to readers: His essays are often worth bookmarking.
MUST-READ POST: This post pointing out how humans are the weakest link in IT security.
IT infrastructure has gone virtual, but 20-year veteran Greg Ferro takes it one step further and explores the ethereal corner of technology. Ferro’s blog looks at the nature of data, networking and technology in both theoretical and practical terms.
MUST-READ POST: A bazaar or a cathedral: What's your cloud infrastructure more similar to?
Ivan Pepelnjak has been around the IT world. According to his bio, he was working on the web way back when it was little more than an experiment in CERN. That means he’s been a witness to the Internet’s evolution from infancy to now, which grants him Gandalf-like wisdom over the rest of us IT hobbits.
MUST-READ POST: Pepelnjak explains why unreadable IPv6 addresses are actually a good thing.
The data center is the heart of many IT workers’ souls, and Data Center Knowledge founder Rich Miller and company keep the blood flowing with a steady stream of news, insights and updates on data-center technology. There’s something for everyone, too. You’ll find everything from supercomputers to personal cloud articles on DCK.
MUST-READ POST: This awesome list of the top 10 supercomputers of the world, illustrated.
If your blog is one of those featured in our 2013 Must-Read IT Blog list, you can grab a badge here.