Saturday, September 29, 2007

Private Equity Eats Avaya for $8.2 Billion and 3Com for $2.2B. Burp.

Money injection is happening in the data and telecom manufacture industry. This is happening because the industry is realizing that the two giants, Cisco and Microsoft, will dominate the exploding Unified Communications arena.
Read the news bellow:

From the original post at TechCrunch: "Two big private equity deals today. Shareholders finally approved the $8.2 billion buyout of Avaya by Silver Lake Partners and the Texas Pacific Group (not bad for an IP phone company that once was part of Lucent). And 3Com, the money-losing maker of computer networking equipment and competitor of Cisco Systems, has agreed to be acquired as well."

read more | digg story

Living "Off the Grid". How hard is it?

I am a big fan of the TV show Survivorman. I found on YouTube, a documentary on what it really takes to live "Off the grid" by the host of Survivorman (Les Stroud). It's 10 episodes and more than an hour long total... but very enjoyable.

For all 10 parts, follow this links: Off the Grid-- all parts 1 through 10

It is no secret that YouTube hosts a lot of copyrighted material that shouldn't be there without permission. Though I didn't upload the video, I am sharing the post with you. I hope this is OK with you, Les.

Friday, September 28, 2007

Careful with what you Web-2.0 about...

When engaging in Web 2.0 in your company, be careful with what Web 2.0 services you enroll to. The idea of getting your company into the big Web 2.0 wave, may get you off track and forget about security sometimes. You may safely use internal tools when constrained inside your company; the ones that you have to be careful with are external tools on the Internet that employees may use.

Some examples are: – online bookmarking: careful when bookmarking internal and confidential sites in public sites that share bookmarks
Blogger, etc – online blogs: careful when blogging about proprietary information and information that is not publicly available to the rest of the world.
Netvibes or Google RSS - Online RSS aggregators: careful when aggregating your company's internal feeds, you may be sharing internal and proprietary information with everybody.
Facebook or MySpace – Social networking: Again, just like blogs, careful with what you post about the company.

Like all security practices, common sense is the best defense. Think twice before posting something for everybody to read.

Has China finally matured?

A big networking company (3COM) is being acquired by a Chinese company (Huawei).... I wonder how this is going to work out? Is China a manufacturing ground, or is it shifting to an investing and truly mature business ground? Huawei is a pretty big company and key player in the Telecom Manufacturing industry.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Web 2.0 in Video

Here's a video description of how the Web 2.0 is changing us, and how we need to change to survive.

Thanks prof Michael Wesh and YouTube.

Saturday, September 22, 2007

Generation Net

According to marketing theory there are several demographic cohorts. These group individuals with generational similarities based on birth year. They go from “Depression cohort” (born from 1912 to 1921), “Post-War cohort” (1928 to 1945), to the famous “Baby Boomers” (1946 to 1964), “Generation X” (1965 to 1976) to the latest “Generation Y” (1984 to 2001). According to Wikipedia, the key characteristics of the Generation Y’ers are the quest for physical security and safety, patriotism, heightened fears, acceptance of change, technically savvy, and environmental issues. Notice that they were born with the rise of the Internet. 

In my opinion, they don’t give enough emphasis on the rise of the Internet to Generation Y’ers. I believe that they should be called the “Generation Net” instead. Young adults that Google for information online, network socially using MySpace and Facebook, send emails rather than letters and Online Postcards rather than classic postcards. They understand what Java is, what Macromedia is used for and the importance of Adobe Acrobat Reader. They did homework reports using MS Word and used Excel for doing their physics graphs. They can find information online in a matter of minutes, sometimes seconds. In other words, they are ultra efficient – in part because of their multitasking practice when listening to the iPod while talking on the mobile phone and chatting with someone online.

For the workforce, Generation Y’ers (or Generation Net’ers, as I’d like to call them) represent the major source of momentum for economic growth. They are efficient and with a ton of energy. This generation will use collaboration as a main weapon of productivity. Every major company in the world ought to have a college graduate program in place to try to retain these individuals as soon as possible. Their potential is much greater than older employees looking for securing a job for life. However, the biggest beneficiaries are the Start-ups and SMB’s. All employees should have fresh ideas, highly effective and risky.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Wiki at the company

Wikipedia is the panacea of online collaboration. It is an Encyclopedia that organically gets written by collaborators all over the world. Anyone can edit an article. The natural law of online collaboration, just like pure capitalism and economic laws, ensure that the information is valuable and accurate.

The question is, can a Wiki be of use in the enterprise? The answer is yes.
A Wiki can be used to enhance productivity by enabling collaboration internally. For example, for a software company, software developers can share a space where codes get stored, best practices get fine tuned, diagrams are edited and available for the entire team, and users can post comments or bugs. If your company is in the retail industry, the marketing department can have a Wiki for communicating marketing campaigns, editing logos and ads, consolidating projects data and showing market research output data. If a wiki is used internally, it can enable collaboration and enhance productivity as a by-product of that.

Though a Wiki can also be used externally. That is, for customers to interact with a Business Unit, or with the company directly. Though few companies do this today, you can have customers access a Wiki for providing feedback on your products, requesting support, or just as a communication medium. Then it also becomes a revenue generator tool.

The bottom line, and major benefit of a Wiki is that it is very low maintenance. Unlike a full blown website that has to be designed, encoded, maintained and updated by someone, a Wiki is a framework that is created, maintained and updated by everybody. Instead of having a single person or entity carry the maintenance of it, the law of online collaboration does it all. It is cheap to implement, and enhances productivity.

One great open source platform for running a wiki is Twiki.... and for more information on wikis, got o Wikipedia's definition of a wiki.

Sunday, September 2, 2007

RSS Updates

Administrative update:
I just updated my RSS feed and incorporated postings into my Facebook profile thanks to an application called Flog Blog, developed by Jeffrey Wiens, Justin Rosenthal and Ryan Colwell. Thank you guys.
Don't you love web 2.0 integration?...

The new process for collaboration

I have talked about videconferencing, Telepresence, supporting the green movement by meeting online, how important it is to bridge the distance, and how useful Skype can be. One piece I have not talked about is "the process" per se. What makes it so great? What does it feel like?

To answer that, people might just say "well, to see what it feels like, you gotta do it". I not only encourage you to create an account with a videoconferencing provider, but I would like to take some time to analyse the feeling for it.

This actually came to me, from three events in my recent job. First, internal focus groups conducted by Cisco when Telepresence was to be released, proved that participants would focus on the technology for the first couple minutes, but after a while they would immerse themselves in the meeting and forget it was a Telepresence virtual conference room. Second, personal videoconferences with my family oversees have the same effect. For the first couple of minutes (probably longer with a Skype Webcam than with a Telepresence room) you are playing around with the cameras and making fun of how you look. After that, you move along with your conversations as if they were sitting right there, next to you. Third and finally, I read about how the authors of Wikinomics, the book I am currently reading, used to bring up a Skype session while they worked together.

All's been said so far... you can draw your own conclusions on how this thing works. In a nutshel, collaboration has two stages: (1) the Playing-around stage, and (2) the Productive stage.
The Playing-around stage corresponds to that period of time where you are aware of using an outstanding piece of technology. Therefore you look at the options, customize it, see how it works. The shorter this stage is, the most efficient the product is and the greater the productivity you will obtain. The second phase is when you are actually conducting the meeting, and forgetting that you are connected via the Web.

The more conferencing you do, the faster the playing-around stage will be. The closer to real life the product is, the faster the playing around stage will be. Therefore... if you can't afford a Telepresence unit at your workplace, stick to the same technology and as you get familiar with it you will peak productivity.