First Coffee for 14 December 2005

David Sims : First Coffee
David Sims
| CRM, ERP, Contact Center, Turkish Coffee and Astroichthiology:

First Coffee for 14 December 2005

By David Sims

The news as of the first coffee this morning, and the music is the sounds of First CoffeeSM’s kids doing their homeschool work and the questions they have as Mrs. First CoffeeSM’s at the refugee center – working, not applying:

Happy birthday, Shirley Jackson, author of the 1948 story “The Lottery,” one of the creepiest, scariest, most chilling short stories ever. It’s been copied innumerable times but never equaled in its simple brutal terror – Stephen King alone has written at least two entire novels which read like write-outs of “The Lottery.”

The NATO Consultation, Command and Control Agency (NC3A to you and me) has awarded Savi Technology a new contract to upgrade and sustain operational support of the RFID-based network Savi built last year to track multi-national defense consignments between Europe and Afghanistan.

The contract followed a year-long assessment of the RFID “backbone” Savi deployed for NATO, and calls for purchase of additional active, data-rich Radio Frequency Identification tags and readers as well as network wide software enhancements to the International Security Assistance Force supply chain, stretching from the Netherlands and Germany through Uzbekistan to Kabul, Afghanistan.

The upgrades include installation of the Savi SmartChain Consignment Management Solution, which will enable NATO to maintain nearly real-time supply chain management and visibility, and will provide an interoperable solution for member nations to share information on both national and joint multi-national consignments.

Savi’s RFID-based network was found to meet NATO’s Standardisation Agreement for ‘best commercial practice” requirements for asset and consignment tracking and were approved by all 26 member nations.

26 nations. And you think you have a cumbersome purchase approval process at your company.

Bruce Jacquemard, Savi’s Executive VP of Worldwide Sales said the ability of interoperable RFID-based networks to link with each other when appropriate “enhances in-transit visibility of supplies and ultimately provides greater confidence to the war fighter needing the right material in the right place at the right time.”

The Irish Times reports today that Google will create about 650 jobs in Dublin, “more than doubling its Irish workforce as it steps up expansion in Europe.”

Angus Kelsell, Google’s European finance director told the Times that the Irish expansion “which will take place over two to three years, is not tax-related… it is to do with supporting our European business.”

Google’s European headquarters in Barrow Street, Dublin, are the company’s largest operation outside the US, and due to its Irish operation, the Times says, California-based Google has “significantly lowered” its tax bill for the first nine months of 2005, according to documents lodged with the Securities and Exchange Commission in the U.S.

No doubt what Google says is right, and they’re probably not even cognizant of the fact that their effective tax rate fell to 31 per cent from 39 per cent, saving somewhere in the neighborhood of $100 million a year because more of its earnings came from its Irish unit in 2005 than in 2004, taxed at the Irish rate of 12.5 per cent instead of the US rate of 35 per cent, according to the Times.

Globalization at its finest. Countries with confiscatory tax rates are going to see those companies which can move to countries which steal less of the wealth they create. You say Ireland’s losing money by taxing Google at a lower rate? Really? You think they’d have those hundreds of extra jobs and millions of extra tax dollars if they didn’t?

“The Irish subsidiaries of US companies doubled their earnings in the four years to 2002 to $26.6 billion,” the Times reports, adding that Ireland cut its corporate tax rate to 12.5 per cent in 2003.

So which is better – 12.5 percent of $26.6 billion, or 35 percent of zero? What if America cut its ridiculous corporate tax rate to, oh, 15 percent? Would it be worth the time and trouble for Google to set up Irish operations, or would America be cashing Google’s tax checks?

Ireland’s on to something, realizing that if you don’t steal the profits from hard-working companies they’ll hire more of your citizens. Just in the past couple years Yahoo!, and eBay and Amazon have created jobs in Ireland. Jobs which could have gone to America but for its stupid chase-off-those-who-can-create-wealth tax policy.

Laptop news:

ZDNet’s reporting that Taiwan’s Quanta, “the biggest manufacturer of notebooks in the world,” is in for the $100 laptop project.

It’s the brainchild of the One Laptop per Child organization, which “hopes to bring a $100 laptop championed by MIT’s Nicholas Negroponte.” The machines will run on Linux, be powered by turning a hand crank and connect to the Internet via mesh networking.

They’ll be destined for places like China, Brazil, India, Thailand and Argentina.

One per child? How about one per student, one per person?

Quanta produces laptop systems which end up with names like “Hewlett-Packard” and “Dell” on them, just like their competitor, Taiwan’s Compal.

If the cheap laptop idea works it’ll be the first time, the concept’s failed pretty much everywhere it’s been tried.

Also Intel’s saying their Yonah chip will be ready in early 2006, as part of what pundits are calling an effort to push the PC into the living room. Keith Kresslin, director of mobile platforms marketing at Intel tells ZDNet the dual-core notebook chip based on a new design will be released in January.

Kresslin says the new dual core chip will be 68 percent better than current one processing core Intel notebook chips.

The world premiere of JibJab’s latest work will appear on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno during tomorrow’s show, Thursday, December 15.

The show starts at 11:35 p.m. on the East Coast.

JibJab’s Internet cartoon “This Land” was seen over 80 million times. Their new one will be “a fast-paced, gag-a-second musical romp through the domestic and international strife that have bombarded President Bush over the past year,” according to the Spiridellis brothers, the brains behind JibJab.

“From Katrina, FEMA, bird flu, insurgents, Cindy Sheehan and Scooter Libby to Tom Delay... there were so many issues facing the President, we had to make the song lightning fast to squeeze them all in,” said Grevan Spiridellis, co-founder of JibJab. “People will want to watch it again and again to catch all the references.”

The music is based on a medley of “Auld Lang Syne” and “Turkey in the Straw,” arranged by Wojahn Bros. Music and voiced by actor Jim Meskimen. The video can be seen for free on both and at on Thursday, December 15, 2005, immediately following its West Coast premiere on Jay Leno.

This past October, MSN inked a deal with JibJab to co-distribute its next five animations on MSN Video.

“We have fewer employees than the local coffee shop,” Gregg Spiridellis said, adding “please send coffee.”

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