“Yes, we could make history, I guess”, the statement from Sergey Brin was not just a mere prediction. It changed the history of internet like never before. Many players like, Yahoo, AltaVista, Lycos were doing business, but it was Google who created history. It changed the way people were looking at search engines. It changed the way people were doing business through search engines.
In early years of this decade most of the web players were suspicious about a revenue model around search engine. The scene was looking very gloomy to them and then came the innovative search concept from Google, Page Rank. It gave Google an edge over others and Google never looked back thereafter.
As we say, “History repeats itself”, the scene around search engine market is changing again. This time there are some other new concepts which are gaining attention. No, I’m not talking about Microsoft’s Bing. I’m talking about Twitter, WolframAlpha and Scoopler.
A new trend called real-time search is getting popular on web. FriendFeed, Facebook and others have already started using it but two key players which are doing some real serious business in this area are Twitter and Scoopler. The idea behind Scoopler is to search entire web in real time. This would be a key concept for all future search requirements. We need to keep an eye on this. Check out one example of real time search here.
Stephen Wolfram says, “Wolfram Alpha is a computational knowledge engine with one simple input field that gives access to a huge system, with trillions of pieces of curated data and millions of lines of algorithms.” Few experts claim that it should not be treated as a Google killer though going in details of this discussion gives a different view. Check out an article on this here.
Google still dominates the search engine market though the monopoly is not going to last for a long time now. Let’s hope to see some more innovative concepts.
Yet another internet meme and this time it’s going bigger and bigger. As the typical nature of internet meme suggests, it’s spreading from person to person, inbox to inbox and from chat windows to YouTube videos. Yes, I’m talking about Twitter, the latest sensation on Internet. It is getting lots of attention these days. The craze is so that when we arranged a small tweet up in Kolkata, it was covered by media without any hesitation. When we analyze the usage of twitter, it gives interesting results. Starting from spreading business to connecting to the fan bases, it is being used for all possible communication channels. I also found few college going students who are using twitter as their regular diary. This proves the diverse use of Twitter and that makes it vastly popular amongst all sections of the society.
When we look back at the history of Twitter, we would agree with the Wikipedia which says, “The tipping point for Twitter’s popularity came at the 2007 South by Southwest (SXSW) festival in Austin, Texas.” It was the event which changed the fortune of Twitter and it never looked back from there. It was an excellent marketing thought, well planned and well executed.
Looking at current developments in-n-around twitter it seems to be going stronger than imagination. It’s not going to be just a fashion mark on social networking turf but it’s going to challenge biggies like Google and Microsoft. Very recently I read that Google is going to launch a search engine for micro blogging services like twitter, an important development in web world. Marketing experts are writing tons of theories as how an organization can leverage twitter for their business needs, one of those theories is here. Even the evolution on twitter has also become a talk of the town and online technical magazines like TechCrunch are also reporting it. These all developments show that Twitter is going to become the next BIG thing on internet.
Like entire world, I too have started tweeting. You can follow me @nambuj.
Here is a poll you may like to answer..
Till today, I wasn’t much into the technicalities of cloud computing. It flip-flopped several times through my eyes but I never bothered to investigate in details. The recent write up of Dion Hinchcliffe, where he talks about Cloud Computing and Open Source face off, dragged my attention to get deep into this. The simple explanation comes from Wikipedia. It treats cloud computing as a combination of three different services.
Cloud Computing = IaaS + PaaS + SaaS
*IaaS – Infrastructure as a Service
*PaaS – Platform as a Service
*SaaS – Software as a Service
Going further gives us much more interesting facts. When the world was busy getting over the high CapEx + OpEx and striving to derive a need based expenditure module, a Professor of Information Systems & Operations Management Ramnath Chellappa came and gave the theory of Cloud Computing. He defines it as “a computing paradigm where the boundaries of computing will be determined by economic rationale rather than technical limits”. It solves the problem of high CapEx and OpEx. It also gives organizations a need based expenditure model. Looks simple but it isn’t that easy.
Some biggies of IT industry talk about Cloud Computing in their own words here. They make it look simple though for me the implementation par t is more interesting to watch. I browsed little further and got few white papers and few books on this. Next task for me would be looking into these extensive details.
When I look at adaptation and acceptability, it looks gloomy. IBM is already working towards its solution for Cloud Computing. They are now targeting software development and testing sector as well. Dave Greenfield predicts a growth in could computing security in 2009.These talks are definitely creating a favorable environment.
I will continue to gather and share more information on this.
On 7th August, 1883 when Indian National Congress was 8 years old, Shri Aurobindo has said, “We cannot afford to raise any institution to the rank of a fetish. To do so would be simply to become the slaves of our own machinery.”
Now, when the congress is 124 years old I would repeat the same. There’s a reason why I recalled this famous saying of Shri Aurobindo. I was watching the election outcomes on Saturday when I heard the 5th generation of Nehru-Gandhi, Mr. Rahul Gandhi, talking to reporters. He was praising the efforts of Advani. He was saying, at 80+ years of age Advani fought with great determination. He also said, “Great Job Done Mr. Advani”. A person, who has served this country for more than 60 years, is getting a pat on his back, from a 5 years old politician, just because he belongs to a particular family, a particular institution. That’s the irony of Indian politics. We must ask ourselves, are we matured enough for a democratic system like this?
This result opens up many dimensions which we must analyze. The first point, which I have already raised, is much bigger than our normal assumption. Why we always go back to a particular family? Can’t we produce a good leader amongst more than 10 billions of our population? Do we still have the slave mentality?
The second point is talking about Indian vision. We all agree to the fact that as a country India has its own set of problems and to solve them we need our own solutions. We have a different culture, different tradition, and different demography and we need a different strategy to tackle them. We can’t run our country on the same model US, UK or any other country is following. We need a political system which addresses an “India-centric-vision”. When our people will understand “who we are”? When we will realize that there’s more to think than few emotional issues? When we would start talking rationally?
Next item to be discussed is what kind of politics we want in our country? I can see more than 100 secular parties which ask for vote because they are secular. It looks strange to me. When that is the only criteria to ask vote then why we need 100+ parties. We can have just one secular party? If there’s any other difference, let’s talk about them? Indian politics is revolving around this secular and communal philosophy which looks absurd to me. We need parties with vision and not parties with religion. Let’s talk about issues like connecting cities, connecting rivers and connecting people. I get few arguments, if we have issues why don’t we talk on them. Yes, I agree we have issues but there’s no need to politicize them. There are other platforms to tackle those issues.
There are few good outcomes also from this election. Declination of caste politics from north India, especially from UP and Bihar, is one of them. The defeat of almost all “bahubalis” is a great thing for Indian politics. Though there are few wrong traditions also popping up, like, emergence of MNS. Mumbai went through a bad phase last year. People came forward and chanted the national anthem in one voice but few of them voted for a hard-core regional force. We made some good progress in this election but there’s a long way to go. I hope we’ll have more awareness towards this. I hope we’ll get better maturity from voters in coming future. I hope we would realize our real issues and our real leaders.
You must have heard that man proposes and God disposes but in our case God didn’t dispose but he came up with a better plan for us. At least that’s what we all thought once we went through our entire journey. We were not able to achieve what we wanted to achieve but still we were more than happy with what we got. Instead of talking more on suspense let’s continue with our story.
We were invited to attend our colleague’s marriage in Kanpur. This was a 3-4 days trip so we decided to visit Aagra and Bharatpur along with the marriage. All planned, all set to go. We started our journey from Kolkata in Rajdhani and we left it in Kanpur at early morning of 1st May 2009. We were 6 people in the group, though we travelled with 7 in the train. 7th person was the one who was getting married and I’ll exclude him from the story as he was in dreams (till Kanpur only). One of our trip-mate was from Kanpur and he was more than excited to invite all of us to his home city, of course with lots of boosting about Kanpur and with a promise to be a great host in the city. Let’s name him Mr. P. initially he was the one who was excited and dragged everybody to join his excitement. Mr. P was all game for this trip and that was visible through his action.
Ok, so we reached Kanpur at early morning. We boarded a hotel, got fresh and went to Mr. P’s home. After taking a homely breakfast we started our trip to Aagra and Bharatpur. This time we were travelling with a Chevrolet Tavera. In few minutes we were running on Kanpur Aagra highway. This time we got to know about the specialties of Mr. B, another trip-mate. He was friends to few but not to all so it was great to have him in our group. He is a great story teller and his one-liners in between his stories add lots of spices, of course to add more taste. You may forget his stories but not his one liner, there are just brilliant. Ok, let’s move back to our story. As the Tavera was rolling on the highway we started a discussion on “Love”. Initially it was to get the views of each individual, just to understand whether Mr. P was ever in love or it was something else. It started with definition but went for around 1 hour and it included many rounds. We got many terms to support / define love. Terms were like care, devotion, dedication and even trade. Let’s not go into details of this talk and move further.
After few rounds of hot and cold talks we wanted to have some food. We started looking for some decent looking “dhaba”. Around 70-80 KM before Aagra we got one. We ordered for typical Punjabi food, the butter roti, daal taadka, daal fry and mix veg. The food was awesome. The hot summer day couldn’t stop us to take a heavy lunch there. The temperature was roaring at 46-47 degree so we didn’t stop too long at that place, quickly grabbed our places in Tavera which started running back on the highway. We reached Aagra at around 4.30 PM but we didn’t stop. It was Friday so Taj was closed. We decided to go Bharatpur and spend the night there. We thought to catch up the Taj next morning. When we were moving towards Bharatpur we saw a board “Mathura – 56 KM”. Mr. M, our other trip-mate, popped up the idea to go Mathura instead of Bharatpur. We had few rounds of internal talks / arguments and finally we decided to go Mathura. It was a dynamic plan and none of us had thought on this before. Our Tavera started running on Aagra-Mathura highway now. Let’s have a quick introduction of Mr. M. He is a decent and matured looking gentleman though his talks can beat teenagers. He too has stories in his pocket but they are mainly covered with some decent wrappers. The trip saw some of his wrapped talks which were refreshing at times.
At around 5.30 PM we were in Mathura. We had no plans with us but we’re all game to explore the place.
Human mind is always tickling to achieve more. It sees many dreams. It craves to grab many things. A student wants to top in the class while a racer wants to be the first in the race. A CEO wants to take his company at numero uno position while a boxer wants to win gold in the Olympics. One question which prompts every mind is “how to achieve all this?” There are several “mantras” to succeed. Many a times these are situational but there’s one mantra which applies everywhere. It’s “A-Little-Extra”. It’s the difference between achievers and followers.
You may like to read Sir Walter Raleigh’s story who applied this principle and grabbed the first position in his class. Or, you may like to see the video on 212 degree approach where just one extra degree heat makes water so powerful. The point is simple, “a-little-extra” always makes difference. It separates the good from the great. It gives you an edge. It helps you to achieve that first spot and it helps to remain at top. You just need to put a little extra effort in whatever you do. If you are a student and you study for 5 hours a day, make it 6 hours a day now onwards. If you are a professional who works 8 hours a day, make it 9 hours from now. If you are a blogger who writes 10 blogs in a month, make it 15 going forward. You should always remember that the difference between mediocrity and greatness is a little extra effort.
Now, the choice is yours. You want to make a difference like a human being or you want to just creep like an insect for your entire life. The difference is just “a-little-extra”.
Very recently, I gave my project 3 speech on this subject in Salt Lake Toastmasters Club.
CMS as a concept is going through a massive transformation. With the growing demand of Web 2.0 features on each and every website / intranet, products are coming up with added features. When a company is evaluating its CMS needs they are not just considering the traditional traits, but also the flexibility to embed many more characteristics popular on web.
The battle of CMS tools is getting hotter and hotter by time. The Wikipedia shows a list of more than 100 CMS tools and each one of them claims to have something unique and innovative. The point is clear. There is a huge market for these tools. It looks logical too. These tools make the web presence effective, flexible and dynamic and to add to this list, we have some innovative solutions added, like, DAM, Blogs, Communities, Wiki, etc.
From last few months I was looking into Magnolia. It comes in two editions, community and enterprise. Both have their own set of facets but the interesting thing is the way they are moving. Recently I saw two new modules added to community edition, “forum” and “wiki”. The message is straight forward. They want to add Web 2.0 features with their traditional CMS tool, and also this comes as under Open Source umbrella. Organizations have now option to go for more features with no initial cost. They also have JCR supported repository which makes it more flexible. Very recently they also started looking into CMIS, another move towards greater interoperability.
Apart from different tools with different feature sets there are different concepts, frameworks also popping up. JCR is one of such concepts and has a great potential. It’s getting attention from many big players in this arena. JCRDev.com is an initiative to gather such similar people. It’s still in its initial phase but it shows how the people around world are excited about changes.