Emerging IT Trends: Future of Mobility Podcasts

Monday, June 6th, 2011

Interviewed by IBM’s Forward View in the fall of 2010. Please do not underestimate the the value of a professional recording engineer. The interview was conducted by me talking, nearly without interruption, and then the questions mapped to the replies. Pretty slick. I’ll never hear broadcast media in the same way. “now for page two…”

My interviews are #s 11 & 12.

Ides of Finance: I come to nationalize banks, not to bury them

Sunday, March 1st, 2009

March was the 1st month of the Roman calendar. The Caesars, Julius and Augustus, were honored with the naming rights to July and August relegating October (#8), November (#9) and December (#10) to their current slots of 10, 11 and 12 in the lunar batting order. Unquenchable ego, sloppy derivatives and hapless government intervention pre-dates the year 0.

Julius Caesar sword

As I prepare for a banking conference presentation (feel free to add your own punch line), I observe the following which could be extrapolated to a variety of industries: media, telecom, retail, transportation.

Bank of the Future predicitons: let’s keep copies of these in the files along with our stash of ‘companies long-gone’ memorabilia.  IMO, banking in 5 years will be ubiquitously mobile, provided by highly trusted and broadly recommended sources (other customers) and regional in size and behavior.  

– Bank branches are models of the ‘way it used to be.’  Going someplace so that someone else can enter some data into a computer is nearly completely anachronistic anyway.  And espresso machines and elaborate video presentations won’t entice many desirable customers.  The financial disaster of today is good news for the Mint.coms, peer to peer lenders, Pay Pals and atypical financial services entities of the future.

– I still contend that the Apple Store and IKEA are examples of what a bank should be.  IKEA opened a store near Charlotte, North Carolina recently and people camped-out to be among the first through the doors. Customers want to belong to something not transact somewhere.

– When the dust and smoke of the financial crisis clears, Google and China will retain their respective dominant positions as the more creative and the lowest cost producers, sharing the title of Best Capitalized.  Now is the time to prepare for resumption of the related global competition.

– Things aren’t as foregone globally or even locally as one is stampeded into believing. 80%+ of the equivalent value of the stock market is on the sidelines, in cash, awaiting market stability.  I envision this being like the starting line of the Oklahoma Land Rush.  Every loud noise sends the ‘Sooners’ out 150 points or so.  Do you add value?  Can I trust you?  Will I be associating with people like me? are questions to which every type of Financial Institution will have to answer ‘yes’ merely to earn the right to join the customer-rush line-up.

– There are plenty of technically savvy, motivated and conscientious younger people out there (gen whatever, doesn’t matter).  They want to make a difference and are willing make to personal and professional investments 
before they reap attendant rewards (they elected a president, after all). Successful enterprises of the future will modernize the descriptions of their business challenges so that this talent generation can participate.

Some days I wonder what is in store for my teenaged sons over the next 30 years. Every day I wish that I was 30 years younger to be find out with them. Welcome to March.  In like a lamb, out like a lion?

Welcome to 2009

Thursday, January 8th, 2009

Over the holiday I qualified as a dj on WXDU by logging-in nearly 20 hours of on-air time. Most fun was working with Tessa on the New Year’s Eve show, 10 pm to midnight. She prepared a terrific selection of dance music from her days in New York. Techno never goes out of style, does it? We capped-off the year with two days in Washington, DC. We toured Capital Hill – the magnificent Library of Congress, the imposing Supreme Court and observed the swearing-in ceremony of Congressman Joe Sestak of Pennsylvania.

A brief visit to the Folger Shakespeare Library impressed me in two ways: 1) a current exhibit entitled Breaking New: Renaissance Journalism and the Birth of the Newspaper and 2) the use of mobile devices.

How chaotic was the use of the printing press once the common man got hold of it. A January 5th, 2009 Washington Post article by Philip Kennicott suggested that the early journalists are the direct ancestors of today’s bloggers. Uncanny are the similarities in the range of voice, chaotic content and public reception. Equally impressive in this exhibit was the capability to dial a local telephone number (202.595.1844) from my mobile phone and access a description of any one of the twenty elements (78# through 97#) of the Breaking News exhibit. For example, as I stood in front of a London newspaper from 1644, I typed 83# on my cell to receive a 60 second description of this exhibit case. No headsets for the Folger to manage; no need to provide iTunes compatible materials.

Returned home to read that Apple and four of the largest music distributors are doing-away with Digital Rights Management (DRM). When one buys a song, one owns the song. To think that ten years ago Apple didn’t even sell music and now they are in firm control of the industry. What example is this setting for other industries? How soon will the cable companies have to offer channels that we want and not make us buy them all as the music labels did so painfully for so long?!

Here’s me at the control board at WXDU. Comic relief that might even please a Shakespeare.

Web 2.0 & summer: plus ca change, plus c’est la meme chose

Wednesday, September 3rd, 2008

So much is going on in nearly every direction everywhere that it’s hard to get a bearing on what is really going on anywhere: the US  presidential election represents more than the selection of the 44th president; the Beijing Olympics revealed more than quadrennial athletic achievements (now we know that 1/100 of a second can create alot of space); Georgia is now known to Americans as more than the favorite to win a college football league.

A few Web 2.0 notables from the summer:

Mobility: I like my new 3G iPhone.  I am offered over 800 Internet-based applications from the related Web Apps store which range in price from free to $39.99.  Two of my favorite are Remote which allows me to control my home stereo from my iPhone as I stream iTunes music via our wireless network (if I can do it , you can too!) and Netter’s AnatomyFlashcards which offer 900 intricate views of the human body to help doctors advise patients.  I can imagine similar applications on mobile computing devices for nearly everyone of our businesses.

- Mobility II: if the trend of cell phone purchases begun in 2005 continues through 2009, on average, nearly every person on the planet will have bought a cell phone in this period.  Each of our businesses require a mobile strategy as these devices outnumber PCs 3:1.

– Which is why Microsoft purchased Greenfield and Google launched Chrome, it’s open source browser. Microsoft is not conceding the battle for advertising on the mobile device.  Internet Explorer may be the browser of choice on the PC and Chrome is a framework intended to convert the browser to a desktop by enabling us to populate our browsers with applications of our choice (see Web Apps above).  Then such a desktop could easily be shared on our mobile devices which outnumber PCs ……..

Batman with The Joker and Wall-E with Eva were favorite films (insert your own presidential campaign comparison).  It’s worth noting that Wall-E was produced by Pixar and Pixar is owned by Disney and Disney’s largest shareholder is Steve Jobs. Now consider video on the mobile device.

– Closer to home, one son headed to college armed with converter boxes to watch Internet TV and to play his PS3 on his 23″ monitor.  Attending school in Colorado, he researched and transferred his banking, savings and investment accounts from North Carolina to Texas solely via the Web.  In our basement, or command center as we call it, I watched his brother so much enjoy on-line PS3 games (it is almost like being in your own movie) that have I’ve almost given up on the battle over screen-time.  We’ve come a long way from Pong.  

cp

Microsoft & Yahoo, Giants & New England, Obama & McCain

Monday, February 4th, 2008

Tomorrow is Mardi Gras in my hometown of New Orleans.  On this day convention defers to imagination.  And plenty of conventional wisdom has stepped aside already this year: in sports, the seemingly unstoppable mastery of Roger Federer and that of the Patriots ended in startling fashion; in the presidential campaign, Obama seems to have surged into a dead-heat with Hillary; and John McCain, counted-out in October, is now the odds-on favorite for his party’s nomination.

So what is the wisdom of Microsoft’s bid for Yahoo and how might we benefit from this gamble as they try to prevent Google from doing to them what they did to AOL (America on Line).

– AOL’s model was to capture the customer in the AOL-only experience.  No need to ever leave the world of AOL, whether you wanted to or not.  Monthly fee revenue model.

– Yahoo trumped this model by providing a portal where Yahoo aggregated content developed by others around the Internet.  ‘No need to leave, we’ll bring it to you.’  Banner ad & pop-up revenue model.

– Google trumped Yahoo by using their search engine to take visitors all over the Internet where Google would keep track of their searches and visits to deliver related advertising.  Advertisers, not visitors, pay Google.

Let’s imagine what this merger might imply for our organizations aside from the reminder of the recent, sour history of such mega-merger attempts: e.g. HP & Compaq, AOL & Time Warner, Chrysler & Daimler.

The Internet’s emerging technologies and uses are evolving rapidly to being about:

Innovation not Integration by connecting like-minded people regardless of location or employer.  This is a design point for our systems and services.

Information not Application by connecting those who need to know with the content that they require.

Mobility and Advertising on the mobile device.  Remember AOL and its garden wall approach?  This is what the iPhone is doing to the garden walls of the Telecom companies.  Google, Yahoo, and Microsoft spent $10b here in 2007.

As Tuesday’s Rex parade circles Canal Street, the costumed crowd will shout the conventional “throw me something, mister!” Let’s imagine what other opportunities are in store for them.

Laissez les bon temps rouler!  Christopher Perrien