Tech trends and business ideas

All things that motivate entrepreneurs

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Exactly what Infosys must be doing with its cash hoard...!

Instead of grumbling about client indecision on discretionary tech spends or reminding doubting analysts about its choice for marathon over sprint, Indian outsourcing vendors like Infosys must be focusing on acquiring smart startups like NICIRA that VMware is seeking out to buy giving it a massive leap in its technology focus.

With its NVP, or network virtualization platform, Nicira (pronounced "nice era") will ostensibly do for networks what VWware has done for computers -- magically create multiple virtual networks that work together in tandem but unleash much more computing power than a single network could ever achieve.

Shibulal, are you listening...?  It's time you let loose those purse strings after real tech innovators instead of chasing me too System Integrators.  That will be a great favor not just to your existing shareholders but also a nice parting pat to those past employees waiting to liquidate their stock options at a fairly reasonable price that seems a daunting task now.. :-)

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Friday, July 13, 2012

Digg's digital suicide..or is it...?

This is truly sad...I read the story that Digg is being sold for $500k, that is a long way off from the valuation of $200 million that it commanded once... Like many before me, I too had been a great fan of the social media darling that did a wonderful job of filtering and aggregating quality content online from the mega clutter that is the www.  

The epitaph should read " Digg ain't dead... It just slipped into the cloud"

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Monday, May 07, 2012

...It's not about the CEO lying as much it is off process gaffe

Ok. So, Scott Thomson, CEO, Yahoo is not a Computer Science graduate.  His resume is fake. My question - What about internal controls and HR processes..?  It's hard to believe that there is no such thing called credential verification in such a large corporation as Yahoo..  If HR has such major lapses while hiring its top gun, we can imagine how much sloth must have crept into other functions like Purchase, Accounting, Sales and Administration - something that explains why Yahoo is not able to shake off its `troubled' adjective even after close to a decade...

Thompson was hired from PayPal in January, four months after previous CEO Carol Bartz was acrimoniously ousted, and Yahoo — so far, at least — has maintained that computer science degree or not, Thompson is qualified for the job. He very well may be, but the perception of impropriety may be too much for Yahoo to bear.

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Big Data - CRM by another name...?

The IT revolution has gathered steam with predictive data analytics (of  known customer data) catalyzing  enterprise fortune.  In came CRM with a lot of noise and indeed it was noise and not much.  People got frustrated as most marketing campaigns based on abstract data analytics misguided product launches and promotions religiously backfired, delivering lemons on their balance sheets. Company management lost interest besides money and CRM had its obituary written, for no fault of its own because it was the excessive expectation to blame. Not the concept itself because customer data is always valuable.

This is exactly what is being nicely clarified by Peter Fader, Professor at Wharton Business School while he says "There is a "data fetish" with every new trackable technology, from e-mail and Web browsing in the '90s all the way through mobile communications and geolocation services today. Too many people think that mobile is a "whole new world," offering stunning insights into behaviors that were inconceivable before. But many of the basic patterns are surprisingly consistent across these platforms. That doesn't make them uninteresting or unimportant. But the basic methods we can use in the mobile world to understand and forecast these behaviors (and thus the key data needed to accomplish these tasks) are not nearly as radical as many people suspect."

Superb elucidation... Hats off to Prof. Fader...!

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Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Adobe quits Apple pursuit

Sometimes, no matter how hard you try to preserve a relationship, you reach a point where it becomes clear the two of you have simply grown too far apart and it's time to cut your losses. After a long and unsuccessful campaign to persuade Apple to embrace the Flash multimedia platform on the iPhone, Adobe has finally found itself at that point, and it's goodbye Apple for Adobe now.

According to Mike Chambers, the principal product manager for developer relations for Flash, the final straw was Apple's recent ban on apps built with unapproved tools and converted into an iPhone-compatible format.

IDC analyst Al Hilwa offered a big-picture view of Apple's developer restrictions: "From a developer perspective, the new legal language is bad news. The application development field is very diverse and many platforms are inherently layered with API's often stacked on top of one another as application platforms evolve. Apple's legal language seems to preclude even Apple evolving its own platform down the road when new languages or interfaces become more popular as computer science evolves. ... While this restriction can be seen in the prism of the Apple and Adobe relationship around Flash, this is not just about Adobe, but potentially a problem for every developer runtime or language that wants to hold on to developers and maintain its longevity. It is about programmers maintaining their livelihood. Probably even more importantly, it is about the flexibility to evolve computer science and software development."

Amen.

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Thursday, April 01, 2010

Converting an IT horizontal into an industry vertical

Leveraging IT is not just for outsourcing vendors in India. Other Industries are fast catching up. I would say it's a fantastic opportunity for sectors that are not particularly doing well, Real Estate and Construction for example.

HCC is a Bombay based infrastructure and construction major in India. The industry is going thro some real rough weather but that doesn't seem to have influenced their business propensities. Though operational departments have been sagging, the IT department of the company has warmed up to the situation and is now pitching in with its own might of experience gained so far. It is trying to develop as an end-to-end IT solutions service provider for the infrastructure industry. According to Satish Pendse, CIO, initially, the services sought to be provided by the upstart could be SAP implementation, GPS-based tracking devices, multiple-packaged application implementations, and end-to-end services going forward.

Innovation does not just mean feature addition or product enhancement. It can also me converting a horizontal into a vertical.
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Saturday, February 13, 2010

Why I turned the Google Buzz off

There are three separate issues, only one of which is the defaults:

1) Having an engineering culture drive a social product.... And I'm not just trying to be snarky. Social isn't a technical problem it's a people one and Google's culture doesn't seem geared that way.
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2) Layering a social sharing product (explicit social) on top of a private communication product like email (implicit social). Why would anyone assume that I'd want to do this? I might email business partners, clients, doctors (mine), lovers... why would you ever assume that frequency of email connections maps to 'want to share with the world?"
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3) The settings. I despair of `society' as an industry sometimes. Ever since the earliest concerns over privacy a decade ago, people insist on ignoring obvious things - you don't opt people in just to build an audience and force them to opt out. You don't auto-subscribe them to a bunch of followers then make them removed those people one by one. You don't suddenly violate customer trust by changing the nature of a familiar product to suit senior management. These aren't hard or obscure lessons... but time and again otherwise bright people screw up by ignoring them.

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Friday, February 12, 2010

IT outsourcing vendors run for cover

"In what could be an important decision for the IT outsourcing industry and its customers, a London court recently ruled that EDS (now division of HP) must pay damages to a former outsourcing customer for failing to live up to its sales pitch.

British Sky Broadcasting (BskyB) had signed a £48 million outsourcing contract with EDS to build a customer service system in 2000, but terminated the deal early in 2002 after what it said was "woeful" performance by the IT service provider. SkyB alleged deceit, negligent misrepresentation and breach of contract by EDS.

Although the total costs and damages will be determined at a later date, BskyB said it expects EDS will be liable to pay at least £200 million—more than four times the amount of the original contract."

Enough India's famed IT vendors? Now don't go promise the moon and hope customers would tolerate project failures like before. Though the U.K. court ruling was decided largely on the basis of facts from one person's statements as opposed to systematic failings of the outsourcer or outsourcing vendors as a whole, dissatisfied outsourcing customers may go digging through notes from the pre-contract courtship phase of their relationships to see if arguments around fraud can be made.


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