E-Commerce Educational Resources

Article excerpt

ge following is just a sampling of the myriad resources available to provide CPAs with the knowledge necessary to perform e-commerce related auditing consulting, WebTrust, and other functions. For those who want to try their first e-commerce transaction, several of the books below (indHcated by an asterisk*) can be securely purchased online from Amazon Books and Music (www.amazon.com) or Barnes and Noble (www.bamesandnoble.com). If you are new to the Internet, all of this will make more sense after visiting some websites, from your office, home, or pub lic library Books

For Web Beginners:

Accountants Guide to the Internet* by Eric E. Cohen, CPA (John Wiley & Sons paperback, 1997), a first-rate introduction to the Inter net, how to get connected, and why it matters to CPAs. Cohen, a sole practitioner, is a highly respected technology consultant. His book describes a host of online resources for CPAs and includes insights from many guest experts. Mr. Cohen's "Accountants Homepage" website (www.computercpa.com) contains the links from his book and many on e-commerce and WebTrust.

1998 CPA's Guide to the Internet by John Graves, CPA (AICPA paperback, 1998), a comprehensive introduction from a CPA technology pioneer. This book contains soup-to-nuts information on getting connected and CPA online resources. It also includes a CD-ROM with Internet software and tutorials. &Commerce Reading to Get Started.

The Emerging Digital Economy WI.S. Department of Com merce, 1998), a 240-page report on growth of e-commerce and its impact on the IJ.S. economy. It contains many case studies of companies and industries profiting from web-business. The report can be downloaded free of charge from the Department's e-commerce website (www.ecommerce.gov).

The Road Ahead* by Bill Gates (Penguin Books paperback, 1996), an entertaining and forward-looking book on the Internet, e-commerce, and their impact, written by a pioneer of the informarion superhighway. When you finish, you may want to pass it on to your partners, managers, and employees.

The Digital Economy* by Don Tapscott (McGraw-Hill paper back, 1996) and Blueprint to the Digital Economy,* edited by Don Tapscott et al. (McGraw-Hill hardcover, 1998). In the first book, Tapscott covers much of the same territory as Gates but in far more depth. The book addresses the benefits but also covers the dark side of e-commerce, including its potential to devastate unprepared companies and entire industries. Blueprint contains the valuable e-commerce insight and practical experience of executives from dozens of major companies dealing with the issues identified in The Digital Economy.

E-Commerce Systems:

Electronic Commerce-A Manager's Guide* by Ravi Kalakota and Andrew B. Whinston (Addison-Wesley paperback, 1997). A superb explanation of the broad e-commerce infrastructure, its hardware, software, and communications components and how they interrelate. Written in clear business language, this is the tspe of essential material on e-commerce technology that CPAs in practice and industry need to understand.

Small Business E-Commerce:

Small Business Internet for Dummies* by Greg Holden (IDG Books Worldwide paperback, 1998). Though some are turned off by the Dummies titles, you may want to make an exception here. …