September 15, 2005

Business with China

It's amazing to see how scared executives are about the growth of China.  Carol  Bartz of Autodesk has this to add -

"I think China is going to be very difficult to do business with in the next decade. India, with its emerging middle class, will be more amenable to global and American business"

I dont understand what data points are pointing her to this conclusion ? I think the real deal is that the business itself is going to be tough in the next decade.

And on the open source comment, atleast boardrooms have started taking note of the open source potential.

September 15, 2005 in Emerging Technologies, Open source | Permalink | Comments (3) | TrackBack (0)

September 08, 2005

Long road ahead

Blogging had been slow lately.  Blogging time is replaced by the travel time. 

This evening while returning from the customer site in this small New York town called Pearl River, taxi radio was playing this wonderful Neil Young song-

Its a long road behind me
Its a long road ahead
If you follow every dream
You might get lost
If you follow every dream
You might get lost

I guess we all have to pick our dreams. Its a long road ahead.



September 8, 2005 in Random Thoughts | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)

September 01, 2005

Work From Home

Tragedies like Katrina bring out all sorts of  extreme emotions.  We are seeing really bad behavior in the form of gasoline price gouging and looting.  Looting could be  a sign of desperation but price gouging is insane and criminal.

I have a suggestion to get back to these gougers.  Companies in California (or maybe in the whole nation) should declare mandatory work-from-home for a week, it will have a huge pressure on the demand side. California has close to 23million vehicles and if even 2% of them are not on the road for a week it will  have a tremendous impact on the demand for gasoline.

Money saved by employees can be donated to the rebuilding efforts and employers can help deflate energy prices which should economy from sliding into recession (again !).

Let stay-off-the-road be a new slogan for helping people in distress.  Global warming, Iraq war and so many other issues are linked to oil so why not start a private sector driven process to lower the consumption.

Work from home and stay-off-the-road for a week. You will be helping Katrina affected people rebuild their house, society and pretty much life from the scratch.

September 1, 2005 in Current Affairs | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)

August 29, 2005

Ease of use

John Boddie at HBS talks about Apple's strategy of new product introduction-

Apple smartly surveyed the marketplace and discerned that any competitive software platforms would win or lose based on ease of use.

Ease of use is a big deal. It's all about playing to the user's emotions and empowerment.

August 29, 2005 in Emerging Technologies | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

August 24, 2005

It's Google's Turn

It's heartening to see NYT validating (SiliconBeat has some comments as well) what I have been bitching about when it comes to Google's corporate practices.

As I said hat's off to their brilliant execution and having courage to do things their way but they could never convincingly define the bounds of  "Do no evil" and most importantly what exactly is their roadmap of staying away from the temptation to do evil things !

PS: Nothing wrong in bad ass capitalistic pursuits but don't go to the townhall screaming about the holier-than-thou virtues.

August 24, 2005 in Emerging Technologies | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)

August 20, 2005

MenWay like SafeWay

There are very few chores as boring  as weekend grocery shopping.  I always wondered why there is no strong focus on solving this problem which is very specific to middle age men (if I can start calling myself that).

Retailers spend so much money designing fancy aisles, putting NCR  self-checkout machines and nowadays in creating sensory good-luck-to-your-privacy ambience.  I wonder what it will take to make grocery shopping experience more like a trip to Starbucks or to Fry's. Why can't they pull me in versus me dragging myself !

I am sure there will some crazy and smart entrepreneur who will go out and create a niche retail business model  targeting 30 to 40 year old male demographics and his value proposition will be totally experiential.  I am envisioning aisles loaded with  iPods, Broccoli, USB Flash drives and sharing floor space with DVDPlay, Car wash drive-ins among other things.

August 20, 2005 in Emerging Technologies | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)

August 16, 2005

OSS Inside

Here is a clue, next time you look at any web2.o company one thing you can be sure of.  That company is completely running on open source components. It's like they have this logo inside their IT department -

Ossinside1

Infoworld in its latest issue has a list of open source components to run your company.  Its not a big secret that many start-ups world over are actually using these software.

What you are seeing is actually a Tipping Point phenomena in action ! This will slowly spread from early adopters to mainstream and then to laggards.

Check out InfoWorld list if you want to get your company on the OSS track.

August 16, 2005 in Open source | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

August 15, 2005

Today's special - make your own movie

Istudio1

This belongs to the cars-will-be-free kind of business model thinking. How about free hotel stay but you just have to pay for the data center and IT services ! Not exactly that but Hotel Tribeca GrandHotel in New York is going close to that vision.

Brilliant move by Tribeca Grandhotel in New York by making a case that you dont have to carry around your little data center with you all the time.  When you check into their hotels you get  fully equipped Apple machines.  iStudio comes fully equipped with all the gadgets you need to make your own tour movie.

I think this idea will eventually get  copied and lot of  hotels will be stuffing their rooms with software and hardware relevant to the conferences happening in their town. It makes sense. (Atleast we can avoid doing bluetoothing sitting in the breakfast lobby just to share that minor tweak in the sales presentation.)

If customers spend more time in their rooms they will be consuming more add-on services.  Cost of software and hardware will payoff in the long run.

Neat idea.

August 15, 2005 in Emerging Technologies | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Wipro Way

Business Week in its latest edition is covering the most obvious  material in the contemporary business journalism - Economic transformations in China and India.  Plenty of interesting tid bits.

This story in particular is impressive and shows  how serious Wipro is in modeling it's business process operations on the lines of Toyota way.

Check this clockwork efficiency:

   During a recent visit by BusinessWeek to an office in Bangalore, we followed the journey of a single invoice through accounts payable. The first stop was the "imaging" room, where C. Venkatesh fed documents into scanners and attached electronic copies to work-flow software, which manages each step of the process. Then H.V. Shivaram typed data from the invoice into the accounting software program, M. Rassal checked the math, Srikanth Vittal Murthy posted the charges in the general ledger, D. S. Varadharajan authorized payment, and B. Ravi Sekhar arranged for a check to be cut. Finally, V. Karunakaran printed and mailed it. If the process had hit a bottleneck, a digital display on the wall would have turned red. That would have prompted managers to swarm the center of the room, confer, and fix the problem on the spot

In this process they will end up inventing new ways of doing things as well. Which will be eventually competitive to software tool makers.

How this Wipro way will translate into new category of software ?

August 15, 2005 in Current Affairs | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

August 11, 2005

Experience is priceless

New York Times covering phenomena of global interns in India.

"Stipend is low but the experience is priceless"

August 11, 2005 in Current Affairs | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)