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Blackberry Outage: Lives Saved, Accidents Down

October 20, 2011

Abu Dhabi saw accident rates plummet by 40% with no fatal accidents precisely at the time when Blackberry had its three-day outage in the country. Moreover, in Dubai the accident rate dropped by 20% during the same period (perhaps they have more iPhones and Nokia devices?).

As word spreads, expect even stricter laws to prevent texting while driving. But as studies have shown, such laws tend to increase traffic accidents because it causes drivers not to text less but to hide the phone while they text, meaning their eyes are even farther away from the road.

Will Apple's new Siri on the iPhone 4S be the solution to the texting while driving problem? Perhaps.



Microsoft Outlook Social Connector Shows Great Potential

October 19, 2011

I finally got around to installing Microsoft's Social Connector and it was an interesting experience. The goal of the program is to let you see the social status of people you exchange email with. As you scroll through emails, you can see the person's wall/news at a pane on the bottom of your screen - under the email they sent. In addition you can add people to the social network of your choice if you aren't connected with them already - just by clicking.

The install is straightforward - first you download the software and then you download a connector for Facebook, Linkedin and Windows Live Messenger.

The instructions are easy - you download the software, restart Outlook, Click on the View tab, open the People Pane and then click Account Settings.



New Interactive Intelligence Quick Spin Cloud Contact Center Trial Portal

October 17, 2011

Coming off the first six months of 2011, Interactive Intelligence enjoyed cloud-based revenue growth numbers of 58% while orders increased a whopping 146% during the same period. Moreover, the cloud accounted for 26% of the company’s total new order dollar volume in the first half of 2011. Company CMO Joe Staples said the following to me in a meeting in New York, “We are seeing a huge shift towards the cloud.” He continued, “It is talked about in every single deal we are in.”

As a refresher – the company started selling a hosted solution in 2005 but relaunched its cloud-based communications as a service or CaaS solution in 2009.

Prediction: Meg Whitman Lasts at HP 12 Months Max

September 22, 2011

By Now you know Meg Whitman is replacing Léo Apotheker as CEO of HP. Look, I personally like Meg Whitman - she is dynamic, energetic and ran eBay for a good while. Two of the major products under her were the auction site with the same name goggas the company and PayPal. Effectively she managed two monopolies. And if monopoly is too strong a word - let’s say they were super-dominant companies with entrenched market positions.

Windows 8 Targets Boot Time in War With Apple

September 9, 2011

Here is a typical scenario many of us deal with... While waiting for our laptop or PC to boot, we take out our smartphones or tablets to check email and work until the Windows-based machine ends it's leisurely boot process. Often we have a few choice words for our Windows machine as we realize the lunacy of having to deal with such a slow start-up process.

Even more ironic is the fact that an iPad 2 not only boots lightening-fast, it has a full day of battery built-in meaning you don't need to worry about shutting the system down that often.

About ten years ago I recall Microsoft working on an instant-boot technology but obviously this never made it into production and boot times continue to be a major Achilles heel of Redmond's OS.

So the news that Windows 8 will boot 30-70% faster than Windows 7 is music to the ears of people who are sick of having to use a spare device while the other boots.

This is how it works... The system processes or kernel hibernates when you shut down.







Carol Bartz Fired From Yahoo! What's Needed Now

September 7, 2011

Without ever meeting Carol Bartz, I realized pretty quickly that her hiring was a CEO gamble as her experience was not in line with what was needed at a media company. I outlined my thinking in January of 2009. When you have one of the most-visited websites in the world, you don’t hire someone with no web experience to run it. Yet, that is what the Yahoo!

6 New Rules in a Post-Jobs World

August 29, 2011

Let’s face it, any company trying to compete with Apple in its core markets has been beheaded and frankly in the case of HP, embarrassed. For so many years, there were two ways of doing things – the established way like Microsoft did and the different way that Apple did things. It turns out in market after market, the established way was wrong. Here are some of the observations I have made as to why Apple has been such a phenomenal success and thoughts on how your company can be the next Apple and you can be the next Steve Jobs.

1) Does your hardware say wow?

Suggestion: Apple's First Move Without Steve Jobs

August 25, 2011

Apple went from computer innovator to little more than a joke. Then Steve Jobs returned and since then, the company has become the absolute leader in tech, consumer electronics, wireless, tablets, music, entertainment, app stores, retail, industrial design and those are just off the top of my head. Jobs also turned Pixar into a multibillion dollar company and created movies destined to become classics.

Jobs did more than create new products and industries, he was savvy enough to lock up supply chains for hard disks, displays and other products keeping the competition scrambling to not only copy the company but to produce products in quantity.

The momentum the company has is incredible and in the tablet and music player market, the company is virtually untouched. Moreover, I fully expect an Apple TV (a real television I mean) in the future with even better integration with online video options.



ITEXPO West 2011 Austin Highlights

August 23, 2011

Before all ITEXPO events I do a final proofread of the show directory and this one may be the biggest ever at 132 pages with tabs (just doing our part to support the economy). We will post a PDF version soon so you can see what’s in it but until then, here are some highlights that caught my eye:

Keynotes & Exhibits Tuesday, September 13th at 9:15 AM we have Ian Pennell from Cisco and at 4:30 PM-5:30 PM we have keynotes from Siemens and IBM followed by a Grand Opening Networking Reception sponsored by Interact from 5:30-7:30.

Wednesday, September 14th at 10:00 AM – 11:00 AM we have keynotes from Polycom and DHL followed by exhibits from 11:00 AM- 4:00 PM. Then at 4:00 PM there is a Cocktail reception sponsored by Rackspace Hosting and at 4:45 you could win a pair of mountain bikes from Mellow Johnny's Bike Shop - an Austin Institution ( I am told).

Cisco's Ian Pennell to Keynote ITEXPO in Austin

August 22, 2011

We are thrilled to announce that Cisco's Ian Pennell The Senior Vice President, Small Business Technology Group will be keynoting ITEXPO in Austin, TX, Tuesday, September 13, 2011 between 9:15 AM and 9:45 AM. One reason I am excited to announce his participation is Pennell handles much of the carrier and VAR/channel partner relationships and these are integral parts of the ITEXPO experience.

It should be a great event and Cisco's participation joins a roster of truly crucial tech companies keynoting  such as Mike McCarthy the VP of Cloud Computing Services at IBM, Mark Straton, Senior Vice President Solution Marketing Voice and Applications at Siemens, John Antanaitis, VP of Marketing at Polycom and Matt Groppe, Director of Global Business Development, DHL Same Day.

Update: Another event which takes place the same week at the same convention center as ITEXPO is StartupCamp4 Comms Edition and the keynoter for this event will be Bob Metcalfe, the inventor of Ethernet, VC, professor, cofounder of 3COM and author of the world-famous Metcalfe's Law.

By the way, speaking of DHL - if you doubt a shipping company is really in the tech space - check out this editorial from Marc Andreesen in the Wall Street Journal this past weekend which explains why software is eating the world. Here is an excerpt as a subscription my be required to view.





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