Folks at the IIA Internet Innovation Alliance have issued a fantastic infographics proving very simply how Broadband helps creating/sustaining/developping jobs everywhere it's available.
Folks at the IIA Internet Innovation Alliance have issued a fantastic infographics proving very simply how Broadband helps creating/sustaining/developping jobs everywhere it's available.
A startup offering Groupon-style group discounts for Broadband open neutral connections is now looking to connect with potential Broadband customers nationwide. On Monday Ulix 361 plans to expand access to its group Broadband discounts, installer recommendations and Broadband information services to another set of almost two dozen regions across France.
Ulix 361 works by using the power of the group to leverage a low-cost Broadband deal in certain areas. Similar to Groupon, Ulix 361 collects a critical mass of interested Broadband customers in a given area and uses the volume of people to make deals with Telecom operators. Think of the service as a way for entire neighborhoods to go Broadband in one fell swoop.
CEO and founder Olivier Zablocki explained to me in an interview that the idea of the service is to use the power of the group to shield consumers from lack of interest of the Telcos and to connect customers with reputable Broadband service providers. Broadband open neutral connections are a relatively new market in France, and prices, quality and delivery can vary wildly.
However, the bulk of Ulix 361’s deals have been delivered in regions with strong Broadband subsidies like Auvergne and Aquitaine. Ulix 361 has led to about 1,500 Broadband connections being installed since its first pilot projects were done in the summer of 2009.
The new nationwide plan launched this week provides a software tool for customers in regions that don’t necessarily have Open Access Broadband-friendly incentives to attempt to organize group deals and to see approved local Broadband services providers. But the catch is that customers in regions with weak Broadband subsidies probably won’t be able to finagle a group deal as low as ones in Broadband-friendly regions. In those instances, the software tool alerts the potential customers to how much they would have been able to save in a Broadband-friendly region and educates the potential customers about how they can connect with local legislators to ask for Broadband subsidies in their area.
It’s a smart bit of marketing, and it enables Ulix 361 to get involved with changing the unfortunate situation that the bulk of Broadband connections are done in a select number of regions. Ulix 361 says 20 out of 27 regions don’t have adequate Broadband subsidies that can generate economic connections deals. Ulix 361 generates revenue by charging Telecom operators a referral fee of 25 cents per megabit/second of contracted subscription.
Broadband and big data
The nationwide Broadband program is the latest example of an innovative startup turning to web analytics, big-data tools and smart algorithms to try to deliver more Broadband installations in France. The company has launched a Facebook app that shows how much savings a home Broadband connection is producing. Ulix 361, though, uses a monitoring device called the Spoutnik that a Broadband installer deploys at the home and that can track the current status of all the connected devices, their individual and overall power consumption, as well as the electricity eventually generated by renewable energy systems, e.g. photovoltaic solar panels.
Ulix 361 isn’t just using an idea that’s similar to Groupon; Ulix 361 also shares Groupon’s will to stay independent of the Big Guys. Recently, Olivier and his shareholders turned down an offer from Google, who is definitely seeking for field-proven, customer-focused, expertise in the Broadband area.
Editor Note : original article here.
For those of you who still wonder why Cisco' s Telepresence and Apple' s FaceTime are such big deals, here is the answer. Enjoy, and have a nice landing.
"You're not buying an unnecessary electronic device, you're buying a family." David Letterman, The Late Show, CBS, April 1, 2010.Direct link to the video via YouTube here
I was the only French, together with Roland Montagne of IDATE, to speak at the conference, which was pretty much held by the "Dutch Connection" ! A piece of evidence that the Open Neutral Access approach is still not a standard thinking here in France...
Actually, I was supposed to be part of two panels : the one on Muni Fiber, and the one on new cabling techniques. I must admit : due to my hectic agenda over the last few weeks and my current focus on Rural Broadband, I totally forgot the second point and did only prepare the first. I realized my mistake... the morning before the panels, scheduled in late afternoon !
By chance, Hassan Clausen, Managing Director of HanseCom and organizer of the event understood pretty well the situation, and let me withdraw from the New Cabling stuff, which gave him the opportunity to get 3 speakers at each panel. I'm glad my mistake finally allowed Uffe Mogensen, CEO of GM Plast, to deliver a fantastic presentation on micro-trenching techniques.
So, as planned, I did present the Bottom-Up approach for deploying Fiber in Rural areas. To start with, I explained why the usual way of deploying municipal Fiber-To-The-Home networks in France is never satisfying for the citizens - see Pau Broadband Country or Gonfreville-l'Orcher : as the people were not involved in the project at the very beginning, they are to reject it quickly as soon as something goes wrong.
That's where the "Top-Down" strategy fails. Enters the "Bottom-Up" approach : help the people solve a real problem in their daily life - what we B2B marketeers call "the customer' s pain", and go a step beyond by offering them something else on top of the solution used to fix this problem. Work with them to define the solution, work with them to test and implement it. Doing so, you will get the citizens adopt the solution, as they are part of its design' process.
The first question is: is there an Open Neutral Access Fiber nearby ? If the answer is "No", then... well, look for alternatives (which are not part of this discussion, sorry !). If the answer is "Yes", then the next question is: can Fiber help solving the problem ?. If the answer is "No", bad luck for me (and you, BTW ;-). If the answer is "Yes", then let's work it out with the customer, er., the Citizens.
That's the Bottom-Up approach for deploying FTTH Fiber-To-The-Home, starting by the Church. Why the church ? Simply because in each and every small city or village out there, there's a church - or a synagog, or a mosque, or a temple, whatever religious construction that is (or was...) the heart of your town, with active social life around, e.g. a pub, a grocery store, a book store... The idea is that simple : get the Fiber to the very heart of your village, and get the people build a community around it. They will adopt the project, because they will be part of it, playing an active role.
Actually, that's nothing new. Think of the Web 2.0 stuff: how did all those famous startups which we all know today, the Facebooks, the Twitters, the YouTubes, proceed at the beginning ? Got an idea, test it among a bunch of buddies, then once the idea went polished enough, extend the testing phase to a larger audience, who will help fixing the bugs and adding new features, then launch the product publicly. And still keep their users onboard by creating a true community spirit. There's no difference with what Seth Godin, the iconic Marketing guru of the Blogosphere, calls the Tribe.
In the business, how do you get customers to use your product ? You do evangelize them, right ? Here, with Municipal Fiber-To-The-Home networks, all we need to do is the same. Hence the Church.
Let me evangelize you. Here is the presentation, available for download on Slideshare. I give three examples of actual projects based on this bottom-up approach.
Disclaimer : I'm currently working as a consultant for two of those municipalities: Montmirail and La Grande Paroisse. The two projects are ongoing, both in the preliminary phase of network design and definition of the first targets (low-investments, boot-strapping...). The project concerning Val d'Isere has not been approved yet - we just started the discussions a couple of weeks ago.Guy Jarvis is doing in the UK with his FibreStream organization, or Frans-Anton Vermast of i-NEC in the Netherlands and elsewhere (interview by Costas Troulos of Broadband Prime here). Although this kind of spirit is not that common here in France, I'm convinced that involving the people right from the beginning of a project as big as bringing fiber to their home is the only way to go when public money (means your taxes and mine) is at stake. Frans Anton has found a nice tweak to the FTTH acronym in the Municipalities environment : FFTH, Fiber FROM The Home...
Amen, and Carpe Diem ;-)
This post if the first of a series which is about the changes that are currently affecting the World, modifying it at an unprecedented speed yet with a mostly invisible manner.
With this series, I'll share with you some of the most stunning talks at the TED conferences.
As a starter, I'd like you to watch Clay Shirky, consultant, author of "Here Comes Everybody", and professor at the New York University, demonstrating how Facebook, Twitter and SMS help citizens in repressive regimes to report on real news, bypassing governmental 's censorship. Feared by most of the politicians all around the Planet, including here in the Land Of Democracy, aka France, the end of top-down control of news is changing the nature of politics.
One out of many interesting stuff with Shirky 's speech: it has been recorded at the US State Department, Washington, DC., during the TED@State event last June. I don't know of an equivalent here in France: we're too much scarred by changes...
Allow yourself a nice coffee break to enjoy the video: it's 17' long, but it's worth the
More by Clay Shirky at TED here.
By the way: I've entitled this series "TED on the fly" because when I'm traveling by air, I'm used to load my iPhone with 15 to 20 new TED videos, which I watch during the flight. That means I've plenty to share with you ;-)
I've been quite silent here over the last months, although I've been quite active on the FTTH front: training an installation & maintenance contractor, visiting key vendors, working on Muni Broadband projects, attending seminars and conferences.
Living "Fiber Broadband" since two years, especially with the lovely Pau Broadband Country, I'm now convinced of a few things. Here are my points:
It's new, it's still in alpha stage, and it's made by Google. It's going to change the World. Granted *.
It's called "Wave", and you're going to surf on it a lot soon.
* Think Net Neutrality, Open Neutral Access, and Open Mind.
Evan Carmichael of EvanCarmichael.com has recently published an impressive list of blogs to follow (Twitter, Twitter...) this year 2009. Guess what : everything Sustainability is at the top of this list.
Forget Web 2.0, WebTV, and all the geek stuff. This year, Green is the motto. Let's hope it will stay so for the hundred years to come.
To start with, you may subscribe to TreeHugger right now.
However, the key question is: when will Guy Kawasaki launch his own new venture in the Green field ? ;-)
France, my home country, is in bad shape, as the rest of the World. Since beginning of this year, you may have noticed that I've started a new series of posts, titled "That's Why I'd Better Move To The US". The reason is that I love my country so much that I'm desperate seeing how bad things are here.
Of course, as hundreds of thousands of other Frenchies, I do wake up each and every morning asking myself: what can I do for my country today. J.F. Kennedy is still alive out there... However, doing something for the country is not an easy one. More than often, you hit the wall hard. In this case, my strategy is simple: RASPSA, "Reset, And Same Player Shoot Again".
French singer Michel Polnareff wrote a beautiful song back in 1977 when he was banished from residence because of some conflict with the french Tax Administration. There's no better text to tell how I feel this morning about France.
Music by Michel Polnareff, Lyrics by Jean-Loup Dabadie
Good news of the day: the folks in Louisiana have made their dream real. Read here.
Truly innovative applications still to come (as anywhere else, it seems). Or, maybe Americans think that HDTV is the Future (no pun intented).
"And now is the time to create the jobs that remake America for the 21st century by rebuilding aging roads, bridges and levees; designing a smart electrical grid; and connecting every corner of the country to the information superhighway."
President Barack Obama, "The Action Americans Need", Washington Post, Feb. 5, 2009.
Note : in the meantime, French President Nicolas Sarkozy announces the suppression of the business tax in 2010, in order to protect jobs. Two radically different approaches to overcome the crisis. I have to say, I do prefer the first one: CREATE jobs. And you, which one do YOU prefer ?
I have been invited by Cisco to attend the EUSEW 09 next week in Brussels, Belgium.
I've got my badge this morning : in a EC' stamped envelop. I'm proud to be European ;-)
Reuters, Thu Jan 29, 2009: "EDF, GDF Suez get OK for French EPR nuclear site"
This new EPR nuclear plant is said to cost 4 billion euros, which we French citizens know it will turn to be at least 6 billion by the completion of the project.
4 billion euros, 2,000 jobs during the construction, 300 "stable" jobs after : what a waste of money, whilst Green Tech and Renewable Energies are known to create 10 to 15 times more jobs for the same amount of investment... Jobs that are local and long-term, by the way. See Navarra, for one.
The best with this sad news: A member of the French Communist Party, the mayor of the largest city next to the village which will host the new nuclear plant says the decision is a good thing for the region, as it will compensate the losses in the Automotive industry - read here (link in french).
That is typical french: most of the people here, from bottom to top, don't think further than the tip of their own nose. I wish I were born American.
post-scriptum: 4 billions euros represents 100,000 kilometers of 72-fibers aerial cables which could be deployed along Mid/Low-Voltage power lines in the country, to deliver Ultra-Broadband Everywhere to Everyone. Chose your camp, Buddy...
Photo credit: Alfredo-9
"We don't need help. We are not invalids. We don't have limited mental capacity."
Russian Prime Minister and former President Vladimir Putin, to Michael Dell offering his help to expand IT in Russia (at the official opening ceremony of the WEF World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland).
Read this. Ethan Nicolas, Rock star at Sun Microsystems, is to quit his job to become full-time developer of applications for the iPhone/iPod Touch. Simply because the first app he ever developed for the Apple' platform is now #1 Top Paid Application in the App Store. At $2.99 the download.
Changing the World, you said ?...
French incumbent France Telecom-Orange is entering the age of Smart Moves, thanks to its CEO Didier Lombard. See this announcement.
Remember the late 90s ? France Telecom was leading the Global One consortium. Now they're going global, as one.
This guy is supposed to become the next Secretary of State at the French Government, in charge of Broadband, Internet, and all that stupid stuff that makes our daily lives, us of the "bottom layer". See by yourself what we, entrepreneurs and developers of all kind, will face. Scary, huh ?...
Brian Solis of TechCrunch just published an outstanding article on entrepreneurship during a downturn time such as the one we are encountering today.
"Fear Kills Businesses, Dead" is a must-read for all of us who are in the Business.
We surely know it already, for most of us have been through the last crisis just a few years ago - remember the Dotcom ? However, some of us may be overhelmed by negative thoughts at the moment, generated by all the bad news we hear of all day long.
Therefore, here's our cure, folks:
"Building Your Business in a Recession
Obviously, capital preservation and cost cutting do not equate to sustenance or growth. The driving factors are poles apart when striving to merely stay alive vs. building a business.
If you’re sheltering cash to focus on development, then cut the services and expenses that will not impede your ability to cross the threshold to market success. If you’re conserving funds to prolong life, then realize that the only fountain of youth is cash itself. Focusing energies on generating revenue, increasing visibility, and enhancing customer loyalty are the most effective strategies for underwriting longevity, and hopefully growth, especially during an economic downturn.
The real question you have to ask yourself is, “How will my customers find me today and tomorrow?”
I’m not sure if this is a newsflash or not, but customers do not typically go out of their way to “discover” your products and companies. They have choices and it’s the job of any marketing and sales-centric business to reach their customers where they go for information—otherwise, they’re out of the decision making process by default. Marketing and sales are the conduits for connecting prospects to your business.
In a down economy, tomorrow’s leaders are born today. It takes vision, focus, and a hyper-connected sense of what customers are seeking, why, and where.
The reality is that there are hard costs tied to customer acquisition and retention. The key is to observe and listen to your customers to ascertain the most active and direct channels to reach and engage them.
Here are several, targeted and affordable suggestions:
1. SEO – Customers actively use search engines to find relevant solutions. Keyword and organic search optimization is an inexpensive and effective means for gaining strategic presence.
2. Blog Relations – It’s not just about news and pitching the A-List, creating a consistent and visible brand requires the inclusion of the authoritative, peer-to-peer blogs that your customers and influencers read for information, help and perspective. Oh, and be wise about using embargoes.
3. Media/Analysts – Reporters and analysts cover your space and by simply writing about your company or product, they can position you as an option among your customers; especially when they’re researching options to validate decisions.
4. Direct Sales – Some of the most successful companies right now are concentrating on direct outreach to the decision makers instead of hoping to influence them from the sidelines.
5. CRM – Building a customer-focused business saves money and increases revenue. Focusing on customers and empowering them improves business processes, product development, and also offsets marketing expenses as “involved and participatory” customers transform from a cost-center into an active surrogate sales force.
6. Participate – Social networks are much more than mere time killers. Participating across the social communities where you’re customers and prospects are active and vocal provides a looking glass into their thoughts, requests, opinions, dislikes, and recommendations. It also provides you with priceless opportunities to combat negative perceptions while also positioning your company as a resource.
7. Thought Leadership – One of the best ways to demonstrate thought leadership is to actively share your thoughts where they count. Contributing articles and posts to industry publications, forums, and blogs increases visibility and unobtrusively contributes to your sales strategy by helping customers find you.
8. Blog and Blog Comments – It may seem trite or perhaps even worthless, but I can guarantee that finding the time to host and contribute to a blog that demonstrates the expertise of you and your team is priceless. People are looking for information and direction, not just from your blog but others as well. Go where they are and offer counsel, contribute to the dialogue and establish trust and authority in the process. Why wouldn’t you position yourself as a resource for your customers or prospects? Too busy you say? Empower your staff. Contract outside experts to contribute to creating a one-stop-shop for insight and direction—just be transparent about their involvement. It costs less than you think to build a community around your product, or at least what it stands for.
9. Network in the real world – Participation isn’t solely relegated to online networks. Opportunities to meet and cultivate relationships in the real world are abundant. Meetups, industry events, groups, unofficial lobbycons associated with your favorite events are continuous and more valuable with your involvement.
10. Involve Your Community – Save money and time by involving your customers in the development process of your new and iterative products as well as your go to market strategy. Alpha customers are often ready to assist with the validation of your business model and also the honest feedback associated with your product benefits and features.
11. Websites are not Just Web Pages – Your Website must make an emotional connection with visitors, while also conveying stories and value propositions that specifically capture the attention of your customers – otherwise, all of your hard work and investment of time and money in sales and marketing campaigns will generate traffic, but lead to a dramatically reduced conversation ratios.
12. Innovate – Always learn and improve everything in order to stay relevant."
This and much more in Solis's post here.
This week in Poznan, Poland, the UN Climate Change Conference was kind of a disaster for EU. Unable to find a common agreement on the war against Global Warming but one: continue to do business as usual. That's frightening: either we "Green-focused" citizen are dumb, either our governments are just... you name it.
By chance, Mr. Former Next President Al Gore went on stage today, to once again share his fear, anger, and vision with the developed countries.
Says Mr. Gore : "The political systems of the developed world have become sclerotic. We have to overcome the paralysis that has prevented us from acting and focus clearly and unblinkingly on this crisis rather than spending so much time on OJ Simpson, Paris Hilton and Anna Nicole Smith."
Among several statements, there's one made by the Nobel Prize winner that is a true warning to us European, and especially us French :
That's the message, EU folks: once again during a crisis, America will stand up firm and lead the World. We kind of missed the opportunity. "Grenelle de l'Environnement", anyone ?... Think about the leadership on technologies, the potential for new jobs creations, etc. Now, instead of developing new concepts, new technologies, new products, we are set to become simple "consumers", as usual.
Anyway, the World needs a true leader, and the United States of America have proven to be the one. Today is a day where I really would love sporting a US passport. Listen to Al Gore, and get inspiration.
ps: you can sign up at OneClimate.net here.
For those of you who still wonder what's this 'Twitter' thing everybody in the Blogosphere is writing about, here's THE pitch, by the folks at Common Craft. Just lovely AND effective, as usual.
Evangelism and Marketing guru Guy Kawasaki has posted a 10-points explanation on how to use Twitter for business. That's "Twitter for Dummies", if you wish: a must read for all of you don't have a Twitter account yet.
I often wrote here and there that I wished we Agilent Musketeers had such a tool at our disposal when we were developing our flagship product: there is no better way to reach and keep in touch with the end-users.
That's why I as many other folks out there are putting Twitter at the center of (product) marketing strategies, whatever "marketing" means for you.
Folks at french consulting firm FaberNovel have released a pretty extensive study on Google' s key success factors.
For all of us who use Google' s stuff all day long at the office, at home, or on the road (iPhone 3G' Maps, anyone ?), this is a must read. As TechCrunch' Ouriel Ohayon stated : "It is hard to realize the real nature of this just 10 years old giant given the number of services it has continuously released, updated (and sometimes shut down) or acquired."
Like millions of others on the Planet, I'm using lots of the products that come out Mountain View. Search, GMail, Docs, Maps, YouTube, Picasa, you name it : all apps everybody working in a pure paperless/collaborative/open environment can't miss.
Like a bit less of other 'Telecoms' folks down there, I'm also convinced that Google is the only company able to massively invest into the Ultra-Broadband industry in order to build the open neutral access networks that are the true foundation of the Information Age. FaberNovel's white paper gives an accurate perspective on that :
"Internet infrastructures are a free provider for Google: the search engine indirectly benefits from Wifi providers, cable and satellite operators or backbone manufacturers who all subsidy the access of users to the Internet. On a macroeconomic scale, Google is becoming dependent on this value chain and must secure its providers.
Google is consequently driving towards infrastructure investing. This trend is aiming
at a multiple goal:
-Ensuring long-lasting existing infrastructures
-Giving access to the Internet for non-connected populations and countries
-Offering high-speed and permanent access to the World Wide Web."
Why ? Simply because the more people on Earth will be connected to the Internet spending their whole life online, the more revenues will flow to Google. That's why we see all those lobbying efforts by the G'Mens on Broadband matters. IMHO, the R&D spendings on new optical communication gear, such as new fibers, new systems, new install methods, etc, are worth the money: as far as the unique rule at Google: "change the rules" is concerned, the ROI return on investment promise to be quite fast anyway.
Is this a good or bad thing, for having such a giant involved in almost every aspect of our online activities ? Maybe Google is the true Evil of the James Bond' franchise. Maybe not. Let's give it a try anyway...
Download the white-paper and/or the slides set here.
Contact FaberNovel here (link in french).
"Darkness Falls Across The Land, The Midnight Hour Is Close At Hand.
Creatures Crawl In Search Of Blood To Terrorize Yours Neighborhood
And Whosoever Shall Be Found Without The Soul For Getting Down
Must Stand And Face The Hounds Of Hell, And Rot Inside A Corpse's Shell." - Thriller, Michael Jackson.
Thrilled by the global economy crisis ? You may think again. Fight like hell the Hell, and prepare a bright sunny future for your children's children.
Thanks to Orange Labs's ePassport tool, everybody with a presence on the Web can get her e-passport. Here's mine. Well, not exactly, as there seem to be quite a handful of "Marc Duchesne" out there in the CyberSpace.
Anyway, once such minor glitch will be fixed (maybe I should find a unique cyber identity ?), I hope someday such an electronic ID will be enough to travel to the US - hey, imagine your e-Passport on the iPhone : seamless/painless security checks, thanks to RFID, voice/eye/fingerprint recognition, etc. Maybe Administration Obama will go for it...
The famous, long expected, mission-critical strategic plan for the development of the digital economy in France has been presented this morning by Mr. Eric Besson.
The whole document is available here (.pdf, in french). Lots of interesting action items and initiatives to notice, for instance : aerial fiber cabling, Web 2.0, innovative services to the person, etc.
As of now, Monday October 20 at 5:30PM CET, the www.francenumerique2012.fr website is unavailable, for the english version to be downloaded. Unfortunately, the official website in english of the Prime Minister don't mention the document.
I'll post the link to the english version as soon as possible.
Read this. Now I have to be worth Guy's choice ;-)
Yesterday, I've spent 3 hours only at the Paris Auto Show. My focus : the "green" cars. No deception : Hybrids, electric, and hydrogen prototypes, pre-production units, and production cars were all over the place. See my Flickr set for a brief overview.
Among several really interesting machines and concept cars, the Solo 2008 imagined by the Hungarian Antro Group is the one which kept my attention. Not only because of its exterior and interior designs, which both are eye-catching: the overall concept of the project seems to be drafted from scratch, as true breakthrough innovations always are.
Read the short story here.
That's from Hungary, folks. Not Silicon Valley or France (I have quite some doubts such an initiative would be possible here, for French generally dislike open non-profit ideas).
Of course, I discussed a while with the booth attendants. A young and shy Hungarian guy, who doesn't speak french at all (I imagine his nightmare on the week-ends at the show, when Mr. & Ms. Dupond of Aubervilliers - or any other place in France, no offense folks - stop by his booth), and a pretty nice Hungarian woman, speaking english and french like me. Both smiling and engaging, which is rare in such crazy environment such a crowdy day.
For sure, I didn't get her business card, but Antro' s managing director' s : Zsolt Magyar. Google this name, and you'll find this Zsolt Magyar. Can a "Hungarian born, Los Angeles based Production Sound Mixer with more than 7 years of experience" (imdb.com dixit) be also the lead economist at a green tech startup based in his mother country ? Why not. I'll find out this soon, as I'll get in touch with Antro for some sort of new venture I have in mind for the Pau Broadband Country.
Anyway, the actual team is impressive, although I'm definitely not familiar with Hungary and its ecosystem. At first sight, it proves the project to be really serious.
Now, why this free ad for an unknown startup in an unknown country ? Because of the Antro' s booth at the Paris Auto Show is made of... carton. Carton, wood, rope, linen fabric. Amazing. They've pushed the concept of sustainable development to the overall product marketing process. That's the clever thing. I never saw a exhibit in carton before. That's why I think those guys got it right. They understand the true meaning of being green. For them, "Green" is not just a marketing gimmik to gain customers 's attention. It's their philosophy.
See it by yourselves :
the door of the cabinet
Now you get it too, right ? So, next time you do think about being green, think Solo 2008.
For the rest of us who were not born with an embedded calculator and did not graduate to an MBA, here's THE video that explains the reason why the World is going right into deep sh*t. Watch and listen to "Marketplace Senior Editor Paddy Hirsch [who] gives
a bubbly explanation of the intricacies of collateralized debt
obligations those financial instruments that got us into this financial
Since a few days, I've got the furious impression that the actual crisis is repeating the very same patterns than the Dotcom' crash *. When I saw the description of the CDO collateralized debt obligations loop, I saw the very same problem than the one we in the Telecoms/IT industry suffered back in 1998-2000, during the first Bubble : the guys who make the big money are totally disconnected from the guys who are supposed to pay. At this time, the whole Telecoms industry was B2B. Remember Telecom'99 in Geneva ? 90% of the exhibitors were there to exhibit their stuff (prototypes, commercial products, booth hostesses) to the other exhibitors. You and me as the real end-user/consumer ? Nowhere to see.
The fact is, once you insert an intermediate party between you and the customer, you screw up the whole stuff. That's exactly what happened with the Dotcom Bubble, wherein every startup was trying to reach you and me with no clue on how do it, whilst every established firm was selling its products roadmap to other established firms with even-greater products roadmap. Anecdote (may I disappear right away from my captain chair if I lie here) : back in november 2000, I heard of a potential deal of 1 billion USD between Nortel and Agilent Technologies. 1 billion USD. For a company (Agilent Technologies) who did $11B for its first year of existence.
The actual turmoil has been caused by the very same defective link with the customer - read : the house' s owner. Watch the video :
Thanks to Garr Reynolds of PresentationZen for the heads up. By the way, why such a video on a blog which aims at everything "presentation" ? Simply because this explanation of a very complex process is made very simple. Mr Hirsch proves that once you master your topic, you don't need Powerpoint. Give me a paperboard, and I'll explain you Fiber Optics ;-)
*post-scriptum : I'm still looking for any information, link, contact name, whatever, on this french researcher who published a study back in september 2003, on the fractals applied to Economy. Back then, the guy simply announced the crisis we're enjoying (joke) today, saying that the downturn is going to be harder and longer than the one we've seen in 2000.
Whilst the french community is busy preparing the Grenelle du Très Haut Débit, where some members of the French Government will (hopefully) unveil its plans for fibering (hopefully) the country, others are working hard to make things real.
Congratulations and all the best to Geoff Daily, the organizer of this fantastic event for all of us evangelists of broadband, open neutral networks.
I've embedded the interview of Terry Huval, director of LUS Lafayette Utility Systems, by Geoff, for you to get a flavor of what's going on in the US those days.
Ed. note : I can't stop thinking about the situation if Napoleon didn't sold Louisiana to the US two hundred years ago. Maybe France would have been the true leader of the Broadband communities movement...
Earlier this week, YouTube added Close Caption to its features set. As lots of people around the planet, I've been waiting for it since months- not that I'm deaf myself (at least not according to my last check-up last June), but I like to think from the end-user side.
According to TechCrunch, "[this] will not only allow videos to appeal more directly to foreign audiences, but will give YouTube excellent data for searching videos and targeting ads to them."
Go to the YouTube to read the whole announcement :
Here at YouTube, we're always trying to find new ways to enrich your
viewing experience and to help video creators reach a wider audience.
As part of this goal, we've added a new captioning feature which allows
you to give viewers a deeper understanding of your video. Captions can
help people who would not otherwise understand the audio track to
follow along, especially those who speak other languages or who are
deaf and hard of hearing.
You can add captions to one of your videos by uploading a closed caption file using the "Captions and Subtitles" menu on the editing page. To add several captions to a video, simply upload multiple files. If you want to include foreign subtitles in multiple languages, upload a separate file for each language. There are over 120 languages to choose from and you can add any title you want for each caption. If a video includes captions, you can activate them by clicking the menu button located on the bottom right of the video player. Clicking this button will also allow viewers to choose which captions they want to see.
Some of our partners have already started using captions to offer you a better understanding of their videos (even with the audio turned off):
- BBC Worldwide: captions are provided in five different languages on this clip from Top Gear.
- CNET: tech product reviews from CNET's Crave blog.
- UC Berkeley: footage from the Opencast Project Open House.
- MIT: full lectures on subjects like Physics.
- Gonzodoga: English subtitles on this awesome Japanese animation.
We hope captions will serve to tighten the YouTube community by bringing together international users from different cultures.
We're excited to see what kinds of fun and creative uses for captions you'll be coming up with for your videos!
I read the TechCrunch article and the YouTube post twice : I haven't seen any mention of hearing impairment, whilst this Close Captioning system is the perfect tool to give access to videos to the deaf people, right ?
Then I googled "YouTube closed caption" (btw : I used Ubiquity for this : fast & easy): only three out of the ten sites on the first page are citing disabled people as the target users of this new feature. That's Media Bullseyes, CNet' Webware, and - no surprise, provided the name of the site : 4HearingLoss.
IMHO, that's really not much. Lucky Web 2.0 key players : they suffer no disease...
The 2008 Olympics Opening Ceremonies have been the most stunning/impressive/jaw dropping I and probably billions of other people in the Galaxy today ever saw. The final fireworks said it all : China is ready.
With this absolutely unique event, China just has demonstrated its power to the entire planet. They master the Technology, they know the true means of Innovation, and they know how to execute a Life or Death strategic plan.
Maybe a few (thousands) people outside of Asia knew it already - have you ever dealt with a Chinese businessman ? Good luck, Dude ! Now, starting today 08/08/08, the whole World is aware.
One could not expect something else from the nation who counts Sun Tzu among her children.
Just installed Twittervision on my iPhone. Absolutely stunning app. The potential uses in business are countless. I better hurry up creating my Web 2.0 start-up in Pau ;-)
Since beginning of this year I owe have sent approximately 5 tons of CO2 to into the precious air of Mother Earth to date.
I'd better define my compensation plan quickly, shall I want to stick with the Sustainable Development concept...