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Rediscover the American Dream

January 18, 2011

In the last few years, it has become fashionable in America to bash the American Dream. This is like South America bashing soccer or the French bashing surrendering – it should be unheard of. Perhaps part of the problem is Wall Street bankers have become the poster children for the American dream. And this shouldn’t be the case – especially when you consider the tens of thousands of entrepreneurs who start businesses and are responsible for generating hundreds of billions of dollars in aggregate revenue – much of which comes from other countries.

ITEXPO East 2011 Attendance up 52%

January 13, 2011

For those of you who attended the ITEXPO and related events last year in Miami, you remember it was a very strong show with great attendance. The conference usually draws from all over the world – especially Latin America, the Caribbean, Europe, the Central and Eastern US and of course Canada.

The even better news about this upcoming event Feb 2-4, 2011 at the Miami Beach Convention center is the numbers are trending much better than last year. My marketing team just sent over the comparable stats and here they are:

  • Overall attendance up 52% over same time last year
  • Paid conference attendance up 54% over same time last year
  • Loews hotel block up 31% over last year

The event has certainly grown and there are currently 13 collocated events as follows.

Staying in Business in Tough Times

January 12, 2011

Recently Smart Business Magazine requested I write for them and for my first article I outlined fifteen things you can do to stay in business or grow your company in a tough economy.

Smart Business

is a management journal providing insight, advice and strategy for C-level executives of fast-growth, middle-market and large companies. Our publications are designed as concise packages that meet the information needs of senior decision makers of these companies. Each edition of Smart Business features a cover story on a high-profile local business or community leader on what makes them successful.

For me, this opportunity is rewarding as I get to share some things I have learned over the years competing against some of the biggest names in the business and through multiple bubble bursts... Dotcom, telecom, housing, credit, etc.

Here are the tips...



Apple Walled Garden Grows

January 7, 2011

While you have to admire the absolute genius the Apple iTunes App Store and its potential to rake in $2B in revenue this year, the success of the store is the worst thing in the world for those who enjoy the ability to purchase software in an uncensored fashion. Although it’s eased, Apple retains tight control over the applications which are allowed to run on the company’s iDevices and now the computing industry is following suit with Android, RIM and Microsoft stores.

There are profound benefits to having a central authority manage apps which are available on a platform such as ensuring applications aren’t acting in a malicious manner or breaking privacy rules.

Did Skype Just Kill Cisco's UMI Telepresence?

January 5, 2011

Let’s start with the positives. I like the Cisco Umi television ad campaign and the fact the company has kiosks in Malls across the country demonstrating the service is a great idea. However, a paid service which basically brings enhanced Skype functionality is a really tough sell to me and when there are so many other things to buy with your consumer electronics dollar such as the Microsoft Xbox Kinect and tablets galore, will the typical family opt for personal telepresence so they can see grandma a bit better than they can with Skype?

In October I detailed ten reasons why Cisco’s Umi will fail and now we have reason number 11.

Microsoft Tablet Expensive but does Flash

January 5, 2011

Microsoft, the company which invented the tablet – Tablet PC just under a decade ago has a long way to go before they understand how to become an important player in the tablet space of today. In short order, the market has become one which is price sensitive – iPads start in fact at under $500.

Yet when Asus rolled out its tablet strategy with three Android units and one based on Windows 7, the latter device was priced at more than twice the average of the Android gadgets. So you can buy an Asus Tablet for $399 or $499 or pick up a Windows unit for $999.

Sears Goes High Tech With Video Streaming

January 4, 2011

One imagines the person above represents the typical Sears customer... Will this news lure the person below?

As reported by Gary Kim on TMCnet, Sears is now launching a new streaming video service under its Alphaline brand which is expected to provide a full line of consumer electronic products.Unlike subscription based competitors you do not need any sort of long-term commitment to use the service which prices new releases frequently at $3.99 per rental while TV episodes are priced at $1.99 per rental.

WikiLeaks and Financial Regulation News to Know This Blizzard

December 27, 2010

If you are in the northeast you are more than likely stranded at home and hopefully you’ve got power, water, broadband and cable/telco TV. While you’re there enjoying the first snow of the season and contemplating the reality of global warming as you shovel, feel free to take a break and catch up on the following news about leaks and banks.



Julian Assange Temporarily $1.5M Richer

Giving Back to At-Risk Youth

December 23, 2010

I love to see companies give back to their communities and people in need.

In fact you may have noticed as of late I have become an advocate of smaller government with far less overhead and taxes; in-part so organizations and wealthy individuals can have more money to spend on causes they deem wealthy.

The alternative where higher tax rates are imposed and the proceeds used to benefit special-interest groups with voting power never has and never will make sense to me.

To me, the American Dream is to start from humble means and make a positive difference on the lives of others through continued success.

So when I heard Interactive Intelligence starting a foundation for at-risk youth, I couldn't help but smile.

It's worth pointing out other companies who are successful and have made a difference via charity include Google, Salesforce.com and Facebook.

During this time of holiday cheer, it is gratifying to see companies taking the proceeds from their success and using them to help others.

When you allocate your charitable contributions at year-end and beyond, you may want to consider this foundation.

Here are some details:

  • Funds raised by the foundation are distributed to a small number of not-for-profit organizations roughly commensurate with the Interactive Intelligence Inc. employee distribution in Indiana (66%), Non-Indiana U.S. (19%), and Non-U.S. (15%).
  • Monetary distribution decisions are made one time each year by the foundation’s board of directors.
  • Special emphasis is placed on projects that promote technology education amongst the targeted at-risk youth sector.
  • At the decision of the board of directors, a portion of the foundation’s funds may be directed at times to assist world crises or natural disasters.


















No Sympathy for Wikipedia

December 16, 2010

Wikipedia is a top 10 site on the Internet - an incredible accomplishment putting it in an elite group of sites

I feel so callous – I have zero sympathy for Wikipedia’s current and ever-lasting financial woes and even though I link to the site and use it about once a week if not more, I can’t bring myself to donate. Why?

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