Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Sammy would have been proud…

With all due respect to Sammy (Johnson)… knowledge is of two kinds. Either we know it or we can Google it.

Monday, April 28, 2008

MSFT at the tail

You know it is never too late to learn, even though it might be a little late to save yourself. MSFT has fine-tuned its promotion strategy, even though its product strategy needs a serious re-examination… the "sea of change" that was promised is taking time to deliver; probably another heavy-machine inertia symptom. But I get excited when a Product Strategist at Microsoft draws charts that look very similar to Chris Anderson's "The Long Tail."

Even XP Embedded seems to have gone through a make-over…

Then again Sharepoint, much like its social networking counterpart: Facebook is a gated-community… I would like to see a lot more cross-functionality in Sharepoint and I do not just mean AJAX… how about letting Sharepoint work with say Drupal?

Right… I am dreaming.

Sunday, April 27, 2008


Preetam's blog posting, all this money invested and the fact that we still have to see a sustainable business model for online video got me thinking: it always takes us sometime to realize that the new is not old and the fact that it is not the old makes it new. It is still a hybrid experience when consuming video; content is still being pushed at us and we have also recently been enabled to pull it. The powers behind that push are trying to become relevant in the pull economy. NBC has Hulu, ABC has a look-alike, so does Fox and CBS thinks it is being a little different by focusing on the live streaming experience… they don't get it. Things are a lot different in the pull economy… audiences are increasingly attention deficient and they don't guarantee you anything…. they have youtubillian options out they… so your question naturally is what we are we doing wrong…. Well apart from the obvious - old methods in new times, you mean?

You are not looking at the power of the "network", you are being constrained by the myopia of a channel.

The network is power; your content is a part of the network; a network of users powered by a database of intentions, opinions and selections… How did Google – a search company become a media company? How much of the so-called mainstream/hit driven content does it boast off? Virtually, none. Then how is Google becoming relevant and.. dominant? Simple - it has the database.: a collection of values derived by leveraging user interaction. A online video platform that is able to capture the value from the hyper-distribution within the edge network is a big part of the answer. We still have to see one that does that.. and here is some criticism after throwing some love at them – even Google has not been able to come up with.

The trickling down economy is trickling the other way, the value chain has been reversed… whatever way you want to say it, the point is "haquely" simple: the value lies on the edge now.

Saturday, April 19, 2008


I must say I was cynical when I first heard about the americanization of cricket. What? You are telling me that you do not see the similarities between the NFL and the Indian Premiere League... those were Washington Redskins cheerleaders in Kokatta versus Bangalore game?! Did I just read about someone adding the IPL Fantasy League App to their profile? By the by, someone needs to consider mashing up the Codecx Video Score Board with the Fantasy Up.. that'll be a sweet mash up. Anyways back to cricket: I thought at the time that some things could not be treated as commodities, I mean Cricket did consider itself sacred once upon a time. But after watching the games (they are available on demand: willow.tv) all I could think of is: oh let the sweet times flow...

NFL is the best show in town... yes there is a little of the circus in the NFL, but at the same time the NFL showcases the best of athletes on earth, it is also a hotly competitive arena, it also has a lot of strategic maneuvering and then there is the drama. I hope the IPL learns those things from the NFL as well...

It was in the very recent past that Cricket and match fixing were synonymous and at those times profit incentive took precedence over nationalism… it is funny but true, at least in this case: doesn't take much for capitalism to trump nationalism… and ironically I think the commercialization of cricket to the degree that IPL has done so has actually benefitted cricket… these players are getting paid big bucks on field.. and are therefore (one would think) less likely to try to make the big bucks off the field..

At the same time it has to be about the sport… those 22 guys are getting on the field to play a sport… and the focus needs to be on the sport.. that is how you will engage and retain your audiences… and eyeballs = money in conventional media.

Well what I am trying to say is the Kolkatta Knight Riders need to be more about Ganguly than about Sharukh Khan and they need to be more about Ganguly the player than Ganguly the man and therein lies the key to the success of this venture. It is a lot of fun n profit when you commercialize a sport but it ain't so cool if you call a commercial a sport...

Of social dogmas…

Thought of looking up the word social, while contemplating on trying to define the "We" in We are India. "We" definitely includes the element - social in it... I mean we are far more social than Youtube - with one click you can share the videos on WAI with your friends in different social networks. We are starting to engage in a social marketing campaign to promote movies that I believe rise above the conventional movies that one sees on every other medium. Social comes from the Latin word socialis "to comrade or partner." Hence, weareindia…

Now while on social networks here is a 850 million American dollars (has it started to mean less?) question: did AOL make a huge blunder in buying strategy little too late?. Did it pay a bigger price a little too late? I mean AOL was the bomb, an ISP whose USP was the fact it provided a social networking framework: chat rooms, instant messaging, emails from other members, groups and even home pages… sounds very familiar doesn't it? The elements that are present in every other successful social networks – Facebook and MySpace included. The elements in lacked? The ability to let us actually see social network itself: a web of how we relate to others. It is a question that can still be explored further: what did AOL lack that Facebook has?

We have not completely started utilizing the power of these social network… walking through Sather Gate I am often handed flyers by different student organizations and for campus events… the student government body was getting elected recently, so it was definitely a busy season of banners. I was hoping to see at least one banner that had added the very useful: "find me on Facebook at:"

To say that the way we interact has been changed fundamentally forever would be understating it… so if I may take it further… we have build these networks… now watch as they start building us…

Anyways, what are you doing right now?