Archive for the ‘business’ Category

Feynman – I know what it means to know something

Wednesday, July 8th, 2009

Do know what it means to know something? About your business? Those that know something, really know it, about their business or life or themselves are the ones who can see what happens next, will have a good guess about future outcomes and can easily adapt to changes. Feynman goes off on a fine rip here about fakesters:

“Because of the success of science, there is, I think, a kind of pseudoscience. Social science is an example of a science which is not a science; they don’t do [things] scientifically; they follow the forms — you gather data, you do so-and-so and so forth but they don’t get any laws, they haven’t found out anything…. You see, I have the advantage of having found out how hard it is to get to really know something, how careful you have to be about checking the experiment, how easy it is to make mistakes and fool yourself. I know what it means to know something, and therefore I see how they get their information and I can’t believe they know it, they haven’t done the work necessary, haven’t done the checks necessary, haven’t done the care necessary. I have a great suspicion that they don’t know, that this stuff is [wrong], and they’re intimidating people.”

You’d swear he was talking about the new breed of Twitter ninja coaches popping up around the place guaranteeing that you can make money from twitter by adding 5,000 to your reading list, hiring people to fake your messages, target influencers while ignoring the peasants and link to affiliate crap in every message. Pseudo happens. In every situation and industry.

Future of manufacturing in Ireland – All digital

Monday, July 6th, 2009

Knowledge Economy. One of the most abused terms by the Government in the past few years, spouted out in press releases and speeches in a form of buzzword bingo. From the cribsheet of a jaded civil servant to the mouth of a politician without any brain work.

Traditional physical manufacturing in Ireland is a dying if not a dead industry. Grunt work done in Ireland is expensive. When trees are cut down, shipped to another country and then sent back here as building supplies, you know something is amiss. Physical labour alone to make something can be done anywhere and mostly now it’s done in India, China and some African countries. That this was going to happen was obvious for at least a decade yet people are surprised and shocked.

Yet, it’s all going to happen again with tech jobs in this country because so much of it is grunt work. High-tech according to the Government and their spindoctors is localisation, sales and tech support. That’s far from knowledge work there. And when the grants dry up, those jobs too are off elsewhere. It’s just another Shannon stopover. Yet we’ll all be shocked when this happens, why? Many of the software manufacturers in this country now outsource work to India and China that once was done here. We should actually welcome that. Any vacuum created should be filled with real knowledge economy jobs. We’re not drones yet all these jobs are drone work. We’re relying on borrowed time.

Suzzallo Library, one of the great libraries of the world - studying here embues you with a feeling of scholarly history, Seattle, Washington, USA
Photo owned by Wonderlane (cc)

I think Ireland, despite the shit broadband and the lies about it being good, can overcome that and be a core part of all things digital. Ireland should take in digital raw materials, work them, add value by reworking the digital bits and produce something that can be used elsewhere. A new form of manufacturing and processing that merges various bits but very importantly uses the greymatter in our heads to improve these things. We could make a lot from Government data too. Some are suggesting that Ireland becomes the project manager for outsourcing. With our GMT foothold and our culture of being good diplomats, we can be a bridge between the Western world and the world where outsourcing takes place.

Certainly this is one future but with our talented kids we pump out from colleges and a history of creativity, Ireland could own the space in digital where value is added. Britain is getting it. I wonder will we see it or will we just pump out more and more java developers who invariably end up training up some lad in China on how to replace them?

Not in top 3 in Google? Using Google Ads? Ruh roh

Friday, July 3rd, 2009

Mulley Communications had a survey carried out on how people react to Google search results and Google ads.

The survey results are here.

In summary:
If you’re not in the top 3 results, hardly anybody is going to pay attention to you.
Google Ads? What are they? Seems they get little attention.
People are not using the address bar to type in website addresses, they just ask Google.
Women are a little bit better than men at considering the data presented to them.

I can see a future where Google’s “I’m feeling lucky” will be the default. Type in your query, get a single result.

There are videos of the heat maps generated based on the movement of eyes around a webpage:

Irish Times article on this (not shown on Times website oddly)
Silicon Republic Article on this.

Big thanks to National College of Ireland for doing the research and Enterprise Ireland for their Innovation Voucher scheme.

Attn Biz people: Mark Zawacki talk in Dublin on July 3rd, 10am

Wednesday, July 1st, 2009

Mark Zawacki, founder and managing partner of the Milestone Group will be in Dublin on Friday. He’s doing a talk at 10am in the Pearse Suite, (upstairs) Radisson SAS Golden lane (the one in town behind Dublin Castle)

RSVP to stephanie < AT >

I met Mark when we did the tour of Silicon Valley. A dead-on guy with a huge amount of experience. Well worth meeting him and getting his perspective.

About the talk:

Milestone Group has worked with more than 50 companies crossing the Atlantic (both directions). Mark is going to share his experience and successes. Mark has developed a unique framework called The 20 Stress Points of International Expansion, which looks at all the stakeholders (investors, executive management, partners, employees) over a period of time and what the traditional challenges are as startups expand and grow out of their home base. This is a very informal and interactive session with lots of Q&A.

If you want to go then RSVP to Stephanie Graybeal.

Our own natural rhythm

Monday, June 29th, 2009

I get the feeling more and more that our brains operate with their own rhythm that can differ quite a lot from person to person and the various aspects of life can get in the way and change the rhythm to a less natural one. Everyone has their own natural pacemaker and for some, it goes wacky and they need an artificial pacemaker installed to tell their heart “this is how you should be ticking”. What if life is like some overbearing artificial pacemaker?

Maybe our natural rhythm is jazz or hip-hop or trance. It’s like you hear a sound from a band and within a few seconds everything clicks into place and you’re in synch with them. That pacing has always been there, it’s why it fits so well. Many of us go from artificial structure to artificial structure in life. From school to college, to work, fitting into a pattern made by another. Working for my self the past year and a bit, doing what I want, when I want to do it, I started falling into a different pattern, my soul’s song got stronger the more I turned off the music of the world around me. How in fuck’s name can you be good in business or life when you are tied to a 9 to 5 lifestyle? Fun is 24/7 and business creativity can be spread over that too.

And with my change of working and living came new ways of thinking and while not a calm, a natural ebb and flow resulted. I could understand things more, I appreciated new things and all the time enjoyed a different sanity. From what I can tell, artists are solitary in nature. They create on their own; they compose music, paint, draw, code as individuals. Creativity is solitary, displaying of it, is not. Allowing yourself to think, not squeezing your brain to perform will get other parts of the brain to start working and interacting. Genius business people are the mavericks; they are the loners, the people away from the crowd. It’s not a circadian movement they have going on but I wonder are they the ones that are letting their inner song through?

My soul detoxified by removing elements, doing things for fun, breaking out of grooves my brain was forced into. Maybe this is like people who don’t know they have allergies and when they address them, they feel better and are better. I attended a voice training workshop in the Gaiety school of acting a while back. It was a full day event and most of the day was spent on how to breathe. For most of us, it was how to change how you breathe and use muscles in a different way. It really was a fascinating course and I learned a lot. One of the things we did was finding your “natural” voice. Through various exercises you can find the sound that sits best with your body and your vocal chords.

Round four - Samba!!!
Photo owned by lepiaf.geo (cc)

It’s like a sleeping pattern, it took me a while to find mine and eventually I was getting 9-10 hours a night and felt like I was a ninja during the waking hours, able to shape the world around me. I’m now back to 6-7 hours and my rhythm is out of whack, even when I can lie in, I wake too early and wake with my brain racing. My creativity is hampered a little but business needs must. For now.

Are the best dancers the ones who learn all the steps or the ones who feel the dance and know what happens next? If finding your natural voice is about breathing and about using muscles differently, then maybe finding that rhythm is about knowing your brain and body and massaging different parts back to functionality. Eat healthy, brain healthy, less sugar, more fibre, read fact, love fiction, learn the Alexander technique, write and write and write. Do a day of silence where you don’t read, don’t use a computer, turn off the phone and don’t talk. Don’t take notes. Let all the thoughts bump off each other. This is probably best done in seclusion. Einstein worked his ass off in his lab/office but that was raw manufacturing in a way, it was when he escaped from those places that the eureka moments happened. Exercising like walking or running or for Einstein, cycling, got one part of the brain to work on the mechanics of the body and then the brain went off and experimented with the data he had gathered.

If our brains are in constant data gathering mode and are also working from the hymn sheet of someone else then it’s going to be hard for us to be creative. I think everyone has the potential to be creative and to think differently and add value to things we encounter in daily life but we can only do that when we find our natural state. Reading books is bad if you are never in a state of not reading books or rather, letting the brain alone to digest things in its own peristaltic state. That goes too when you are bashing out work, creative or not. Good business ideas can possibly be cranked out; great business ideas need to be contemplated. Einstein may have cracked the nut on relativity in a flash but it took him 6 weeks to figure it out properly.

Edit: Originally written in pen on a train then typed up. Composing on computer and editing took three hours.

Hennessy meets the bloggers

Monday, June 29th, 2009

Last week a few food and drink bloggers were invited out to the offices of Edward Dillon and company, who look after Hennessy in Ireland. This was organised via Brennan Sabatini (warning music plays). The meet and greet also extended to sampling some of the variations of Hennessy as seen below. We tried Hennessy V.S., Hennessy V.S.O.P., Hennessy X.O. and Hennessy Paradis. We got the history behind Hennessy and how the various cognacs are made. Hennessy then asked us for feedback on how they market and as people in the blogging and online media space, is there anything they should do. Feedback was given.


This is Alan, the mixologist. Wildly talented and entertaining:


We got to taste a cocktail called a Miami and this is the vid of how it’s made:

But my fav from the day was the direct and simple ginger ale and Hennessy:

I’m a fan of Hennessy and Baileys mixed together but it can be heavy after a few, ginger ale works well.

Some other videos:

More cocktails:
Blowtorches and orange

How to make a Bloggertini

Tasting the various Hennessys:

Hennessy V.S.

Hennessy V.S.O.P.

Hennessy X.O.

Hennessy Paradis

Very interesting to hear that Hennessy in America is consumed mostly by African Americans and Hennessy is references a hell of a lot in hihop songs. Oh and by volume, not per capita, Ireladn is 4th biggest in world for consuming Hennessy.

So what did Hennessy get out of this, 5 people who may now consider ordering Hennessy based cocktails? Or them telling their readers? Perhaps. Still negligible audiences compared to print or radio though. Getting to know people who spend all their hours in this new medium might be a good thing though. I heard it has a future this internet thing. For the bloggers, they got to sample a small amount of booze but they also got new content for their blogs. They also know a little bit more about their subject area which is probably the biggest benefit. Cognac making and blending is to me at least, highly interesting. I do wonder what the next step after the various meets and greets are though. Will consumers eventually design products they want and so become part of the customer care and product design teams?

PR firm running ads against my name (hey lads there’s a H in Fashion)

Sunday, June 28th, 2009

Bless. When you do a Google search for Mulley or Damien Mulley, Mary Crotty PR have ads running.

Mary Crotty PR

Good for them. I clicked on the ads too to see their site. I hope they have set a sane daily budget as if everyone that Googled my name clicked on the ads, it might cost them a lot over the space of a day and week. Also, because the keywords damien and mulley are not on their site, they pay more per click then if the words were there. Add my details to your landing page! I’m here to save you money! (Edit: Daily budget was hit it seems)

I like this page on their website. This image on the page says they take pride in perfection:

Mary Crotty PR and perfection

It sits just under this image about how image is important:

Mary Crotty PR Image is important

eircom mobile broadband launches

Monday, June 15th, 2009

eircom today launch their new mobile broadband plug and play product. It costs €19.99 a month and is on a 12 month contract. Yes, it runs on the Meteor network. The biggy in my view is that with the product, you get access to eircom’s WiFi hotspots which are in 1,000+ locations across Ireland. 10GB download allowance too. Additionally customers will have access to exclusive online content from Setanta Sports

The network for now is only available in Dublin, Cork city, Dundalk, Drogheda, Bray, Naas and Newbridge but eircom say they’ll be extending the coverage range to over half the population by the end of 2009.

Settling the Mac vs PC debate...
Photo owned by Tama Leaver (cc)

App School – Learn to make iPhone applications

Friday, June 12th, 2009

App School

One of the things that kept me busy of late was getting a new project ready. We press released about App School this morning as well as getting it mentioned in the Irish Times. Patrick, Daniel, SQT Training and myself will be involved in training people in how to build and market iPhone applications over 5 days.

If you can handle C++ or Java then this course will suit you, the first run of it is July 20th. App school is on Twitter too, naturally.

More from Patrick.

Press/Media Advice for an Irish Business – The Mega mix

Monday, June 8th, 2009

Here’s a list of blog posts from some Irish people that work in and around media and PR talking about how to up your PR/Media relationship game. You might find it useful. This is from an Irish perspective, so if there are other hints and tips I missed, please let me know.

Publicistklubben Södra - 08
Photo owned by jocke66 (cc)

From Adrian Weckler:

How to get more space in a newspaper.

How to write a competent press release.

6 things I would do if I set up a PR company.

Way way more from Adrian here.

From Damien Mulley:

Dealing with the media – Interview stage.

Secrets of running a Lobby Group – Building press relations.

How to deal with journalists – as told by them.

Building relationships with journalists.

From Piaras Kelly:
PR photography tips.

Doing Your Own PR – What Tools Are Out There?

From Emily Tully:
Five things you should know when sending out a press release.

PR on a shoestring.

Preparing for PR.

From Darragh Doyle:
Using simple social media tools to capture an event.

From Eoin Kennedy:
Online PR Distribution Debate Opened Up Again?