Archive | Miscellany RSS feed for this section

Keith McMahon left us…

2 Jul

It’s with great sadness that I learned about the passing away of Keith McMahon on Monday. I only met Keith on a couple of occasions, but he was at the top of the analyst game when it comes to meaningful, insightful and no-nonsense analysis. I followed him on twitter and his feed was one of those that rarely failed to make me ponder. He will be sorely missed.

One Leg in Europe, One Leg in Asia

20 Jun

The Two Towers

As some of you may have heard on the grapevine already, I am moving to Asia over the summer. More specifically, Shanghai. I am moving for family-related reasons, but I am very excited about the opportunities this move represents for me professionally.

First of all, I should reassure the friends, colleagues and customers in Europe that have been kind enough to trust my company Diffraction Analysis to assist them with their various needs for insight in the last years: we will continue to do so.

I’m not turning my back on Europe, far from it: there are many valuable projects, companies and initiatives here that are examples for the rest of the world and we will keep looking for them, analyzing them and meeting with their representatives. I will personally be traveling back to Europe on a regular basis to connect with customers, prospects, policy makers and more generally anyone in the broadband and telecom ecosystem worth talking to.

I see moving to Asia as an opportunity to broaden our understanding of best in class companies and policies. I think that the Asian NGA story has yet to be told ; I keep hearing partial analysis or misplaced examples that simply aren’t enough to understand how countries that are 10 years ahead of Europe in infrastructure deployment have evolved and what that means for Europe and the US.

So part of the opportunity for me will be in being really close to two key markets, Japan and South Korea that I will strive to understand more thoroughly. Of course, proximity to Hong-Kong, Singapore and Malaysia will also be opportunities for better insight as well. Here are some of the questions that are already on my curiosity list:

  • why is NTT changing its corporate structure now (and only now) and how does it affected the growth of Japanese next-generation broadband (or lack thereof)?
  • how much profit (if any) have the Korean broadband operators made with fiber, and assuming (as its often told in the West) that they didn’t make profit, how much has the rest of the Korean IT economy benefited from highly adopted ultra-fast broadband?
  • is Singapore turning into the footprint for a Smart City built from the ground up, with infrastructure as an enabler as opposed to a constraint? Also, what are the impacts of a three-tier market model (infra, wholesale, retail) on Smart City initiatives?
  • is Malaysia paving the way for emerging market connectivity, demonstrating the value of mass deployed fiber for economic development?

There are many more fascinating stories to be told, around what’s happening in Indonesia, the turmoils of the Australian NBN, and of course the Chinese fiber story itself, and I hope to have the opportunity to tell all of these stories once I’m there.

So if you’ve been following me from Europe or the US, rest assured that it’s not the end of the story by a long stretch: it’s a new chapter, richer in meaningful examples and useful insight. And I’ve you’ve been following me from Asia, please ping me: I’ll be there full-time from August and expect to be fully operational by September.

Some telcos do understand customer service…

16 Jun

It’s refreshing to see that not all telcos are going the way of the phone tree, doing all they can to discourage you from talking to anyone on the phone.

Problems with your Blackberry?

22 Oct

I wanted to apologize for the radio silence, a combination of too much work and a planned blog/website rethink leads to blogging paralysis.

So just to make up for it, here a hilarious video that should speak to Telecom people, probably the only ones who can really get it…

Curating Interesting Links

26 Jun

Since the beginnings of fiberevolution, I have been blogging in response to various articles, other blog posts and informations found on the net that relate to the topics I cover.

There’s so many more of those than I can reasonably blog about however that it became something of a frustrating exercice.

In order to address this I’ve recently started trialling a service called ScoopIt which I think answers that particular issue I’ve had.

I have a boards over at ScoopIt called Connected World, which you can subscribe to through RSS or simply view when you want to. It aggregates articles I’ve found interesting with a few lines of comment at most from me.

I hope you find it interesting, please let me know if you do so!

Saving us from the Online World

24 Jun

This is as far as I can figure out an advertising concept, but it’s wonderful!

The Offline Glass from Mauricio Perussi on Vimeo.

Changing the corporate OS ?

11 Jun

This is a little left field I  guess in relation to the topics I normally cover here, but the subject of employee motivation is something I’ve been thinking about for a while, and so when I watched this TED Talk it resonated with me. I’ll let you watch it first and then I’ll comment.

The first thing that came to my mind after watching this was “I’m not surprised”‘. I didn’t know that social sciences invalidated the effectiveness of financial incentives for most modern work tasks. I also find it ironic that the hierarchical level in businesses where financial incentives become part of your package are exactly those at which the mix of tasks becomes negatively affected by such incentives. But I’m not surprised. It resonates with my experience.

About two thirds into the video, when Pink moves onto the “solution”, my cynical self went “yeah, right…” Then he talked about ROWE and I was intrigued again. A big part of the homeworking discussion (which is, in a way, related to this blog’s topic, phew!) revolves around measured increases in productivity that most traditional businesses simply do not want to believe.

So there’s hope. Not that I anticipate things to change overnight. I’ve been burned too many times by the inane mental constructs of HR and Management Gurus in large organisations to believe that a model, no matter how good on paper, can work accross the board. I’d be interested in seeing for example if there’s a breaking point for ROWE related to the size of the organisation or the nature of the business. Guess I’ll have to look into that.

This week another article was shared by a friend that relates to this in a sense. It’s called If you’re trying to change how your company works, you probably won’t. For years before I decided to launch Diffraction Analysis I’d be hoping for a job where I could throw myself without qualms into growing a business I believed in. I never could find one. And indeed, I discovered that changing things from the inside rarely if ever works. You even hope against hope, when you resign, that they’ll understand. They never do.

Or maybe it was me.

In any case, I tend to be cynical about the “science” of running organisations, and while Pink’s delivery is a little too over the top for me, what he says resonates with me in a way that few things in this field have before. If this starts spreading, moving back into regular employment might become appealing again, someday!

The slippery slope of interactivity

28 May

I’ve been a fan of Jack Dee ever since I saw him on Television in the UK in the 90s (yeah, that takes me back)…

This is a more recent skit from his Live at the Appolo series, on mobile phones and interactive television.

 

It’s very funny. But like every piece of good humour, there’s enough reality behind it to make you think. Predictive calling ? I could see that happening. And wouldn’t it just be a nightmare…

Gives FTTB a whole new meaning…

19 Apr

It’s not every day I see comedy that not only mentions but actually addresses fiber related topics, so I’m not going to let this one pass!

This is the fabled Australian comic duo Clarke and Dawe on the Opposition’s NBN plan.

I Want Fiber

2 Apr

One of my greatest frustration is not being able to get fiber to my home (yet). According to their customer service, SFR tells me that I should be eligible within 3 to 6 months, but I’ll believe it when I see it.

Meanwhile, I was venting that frustration last night playing around with Phoster, a neat poster app on the ipad, and I produced the following poster.

I shared it on twitter and some people asked for a broader share of it. So there you are! If you want fibre too, feel free to use it and share it around (a little credit and ping back to www.fiberevolution.com would be appreciated) !