Business Machine

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Weblog Archive Cutedge

by: Bernard Teo

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Copyright © 2003-2012
Bernard Teo
Some Rights Reserved.

Mon 19 Jun 2006

About the AEBS Firmware Update 5.7 & iChat AV

Category : Technology/AEBS5dot7.txt

The last time I updated my Airport Base Station with the 5.6 firmware update, I promptly lost connection with my ISP. Something went wrong with PPPoE and the Base Station refused to connect with the ISP. I had to revert the firmware back to 5.5.1 to salvage the base station.

This time, the 5.7 firmware update went much better. Apple seems to have fixed the PPPoE problem, whatever that was.

I've needed to update the base station to test out iChat AV on my iMac, which seems to require a base station with at least a 5.6 firmware update, if you're sitting behind an Airport Base Station.

Hai Hwee has a new MacBook, and a black one, too, and I've now someone to talk to over iChat AV.

It's working well and this is great (I'd be able to see my wife and kid even when I travel). Even over Airport. Imagine connecting up a few retail outlets with these Intel-based iMacs, and using the built-in camera to double-up also as a bar-code reader. I'd like to figure out how this can be made to work, but I can already see the business processes this can be made to support. As usual, there's so much to do, and so little time ...

I had this email last week from Yves Filiatro, whom I was helping with MailServe :
"I don't know how old you are but I am amazed by the changes that happened in the last century, it is not long ago that the first flight was made by the wright brothers and now I don't even have to go to take my car to the post office to buy a stamp to post my letter and to wait a few weeks to get an answer from you. Just a thought as I think we take all of this for granted too often. Good night from the other side of the world".

Posted at 2:53PM UTC | permalink

Dying by a thousand cuts

Category : Commentary/piracy.txt

We've crossed the 5500 figure for the number of registered users of Postfix Enabler, DNS Enabler, et al. But, if you go to Version Tracker or MacUpdate, you'll see download figures at least 10 times that number.

That's the point of that article : "Piracy bleeds Mac game makers dry". Piracy bleeds all software developers dry.

"The software's overpriced; I want to try it before I buy it (but then never get around to buying it); I can't afford it on a student's income." And so on...

I've read that software publishers factor the cost of lost sales due to piracy into the retail cost of their products, in effect punishing the people who pay for software by getting them to bear the cost for those who don't.

I've never wanted to do that. I'm working towards the day when we'll lick this problem. Price the software low - but make everyone who use it pay for it.

Nothing gets me down more than having someone who pirates the software write in to ask for support. We have an efficient back-end database, so it's very easy for me to tell when someone's had the gall to do that. Chutzpah's not the word. You go through highs and lows. These are the lows.

Postscript : But how do you get out of this funk? Salespeople keep themselves pumped up reading Anthony Robbins, and (the early) Zig Ziglar. Me? I dive into books like How I Made It, to remind myself that others may have gone through worse. And let Bruce Springsteen scream my pain away in Thunder Road.

Posted at 10:09AM UTC | permalink

Thinking Different about Thinking Different

Category : Commentary/aboutThinkingDifferent.txt

I was reading this article about "Why Startups Condense in America". Going down the list of reasons :

1. The US Allows Immigration,
2. The US Is a Rich Country,

until I reached
3. The US Is Not (Yet) a Police State,

and I read :

"Another country I could see wanting to have a silicon valley is China. But I doubt they could do it yet either ... Singapore would face a similar problem. Singapore seems very aware of the importance of encouraging startups. But while energetic government intervention may be able to make a port run efficiently, it can't coax startups into existence. A state that bans chewing gum has a long way to go before it could create a San Francisco."

See what I mean? About people rejecting perfectly workable solutions to societal problems on the grounds of ideological purity. "Banning chewing gum? What sacrilege."

Actually, thinking different for a moment, I've often felt that a student of business could learn a lot from studying two lessons - 1. from Apple (about how to break through against a strong incumbent in the face of overwhelming odds), and 2. from the founding of modern-day Singapore (about how to create something from out of absolutely nothing - no hinterland, no agriculture, no water, on an island the size of a postage stamp).

There's a book I have, "Heart Work" (you can't find it on Amazon), that tells the story about how these guys in the economic development board brought business to Singapore over the last 40 years and there were some amazing stories, stories of spunk and resourcefulness, of what Guy Kawasaki would call chutzpah, e.g.,

"... the story of Philip Yeo selling land to a chemical company CEO while it was still underwater ..."

So, there are start-up lessons to be learnt here. The point I am making is that Thinking Different cuts both ways, and we can question the received wisdom, even those of the progressive, liberal persuasion.

Posted at 9:04AM UTC | permalink

Put your Mac to Work Now how would you do something like that?

Weblogs. Download and start a weblog of your own.

A Mac Business Toolbox
A survey of the possibilities

A Business Scenario
How we could use Macs in businesses

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