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Archive for December, 2007

Google Zeitgeist 2007

I really enjoy browsing Google’s annual Zeitgeist lists. What is a Zeitgeist list?  Google’s explanation:

To get a glimpse of what’s been on our collective consciousness, we mined billions of search queries to discover what sorts of things rose to the top. We encourage you to check out our findings to see if you, too, reflect the zeitgeist — the spirit of the times.

With a brief glance at the list, I’m not sure it is obvious what is on our collective consciousness. I was excited because I was not familiar with a few of the terms and thought I was in for a cool, learning experience. The excitement was tempered, however, when I discovered that the 3rd fastest rising term tmz is a website that provides an inside look at the latest celebrity scandals. Blech. Read the rest of this entry »

Friending Strategies

Today Mark Cuban detailed his strategy for maintaining a manageable list of friends on facebook in his blog post My New Facebook Strategy and the FB Power Level. facebook‘s 5000 friend limit strong-armed him into concocting a strategy. Peons like me do not have such problems, but if I did I imagine I would adopt a similar strategy. In paring down his list Cuban decided to keep and accept friends who fall into 3 groups: 1-real friends who he knows, 2-people with common interests or a business connection, and 3-the motivation behind this blog post, the “power layer” which is defined as “people who in whatever industry they are in, retain some level of power.” I left a semi-sarcastic comment saying that a new goal in my life is to make the power layer.

Friending is a topic that is discussed ad nauseum on blogs and in newspapers and magazines. The online space certainly adds a new dimension to relationships.  I’m not so popular in the Robert Scoble, Mark Cuban sense that I have the problem of reaching limits.  I would say that I value quality over quantity but frankly speaking most of my friends are of questionable quality.

David Sedaris: Dress Your Family in Corduroy and Denim

Last year I thoroughly enjoyed reading David Sedaris‘s book Me Talk Pretty One Day while traveling in Europe.  After finishing an arduous MBA semester I picked up his book Dress Your Family in Corduroy and Denim and used it as a tool to remind myself that reading can be fun when it is not about synergies, paradigms, commodities, incentivizing, instantiating, democratization, or anything written by Michael Porter.  While not quite as hilarious as Me Talk Pretty One Day, Denim has plenty of laugh-out-loud moments.  His exploits as a house cleaner in New York are especially funny.

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Persona Unattractive: You’ve got a little beard thing

Just a few months after I started working from home I was having a “discussion” with my wife when she made the scathing statement: “Your whole persona is….unattractive!”

A few days after that comment was made I received this clipping courtesy of my father-in-law.

I value efficiency and substance over convention.

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Enterprise Architecture

Thoughts on Systems Integration, Business Intelligence, & Operational Efficiencies

I’ve been reading quite a bit about enterprise architecture recently, specifically its role in systems integration. The proliferation of disparate enterprise systems at organizations of all sizes has resulted in the amassing of huge amounts of data that is not easily analyzed and thus leaves organizations without the ability to synthesize the data into intelligence and use it to inform strategy. Opportunities for operational efficiencies are also missed because these enterprise systems reside on islands with limited abilities to communicate with other systems. Data is defined inconsistently and housed redundantly, which increases costs and lowers margins.

There are myriad reasons why so many organizations are in this position: the migration to the digital age was/is an iterative process–cost often prohibits the implementation of more than one enterprise system concurrently; enterprise systems are often designed to streamline operations of a particular business unit without regard to how data will be pulled out of the system and without regard to how data will reconcile to existing systems; management by spreadsheets and other rudimentary tools is ingrained in the culture of organizations that are reticent to change what “works”.
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