Friday, November 11, 2011

Great business tips from Steve Jobs

1. Be innovative
Steve Jobs was committed and dedicated to technological innovation, Moaiyad Hossenally, senior industry manager for Asia-Pacific ICT practice at Frost & Sullivan, noted in an e-mail.
Pointing to one of Jobs' quotes, "Innovation distinguishes between a leader and a follower", he said the former Apple CEO worked at marrying art and science to bring about technological innovation. "This was the biggest difference in Apple as compared to other PC manufacturers."
Jan Dawson, chief telecoms analyst, said Jobs was not constrained by what has been done before, what is available in the market, or what consumers think they want. Under his leadership, Apple had been very good at reinventing categories in a way consumers could not have articulated "ahead of time" but responded to "enthusiastically", the analyst explained in an e-mail.
Bryan Ma, associate vice president of client devices at IDC Asia-Pacific, shared that even though Apple had not been at the "forefront" of technology, they were innovative in making the product easy enough to use and attractive enough for the mass market.
"Apple made technology cool by simplifying technology and making it cool," he said in a phone interview.
Apple customer Tan Dezhong praised Jobs' for daring to be different and challenging the status quo. "Jobs could tap his inner creativity to create products that change the world," said the banker. "If I could, I'd like to pick up that ability."
2. Have both foresight and confidence
In his tribute to Jobs, Frost & Sullivan Chairman David Frigstad wrote: "Many claim the title of a true visionary, but Jobs set the standard by which all others will be measured."
IDC's Ma noted that Jobs' most striking trait was that he did not get "too caught up" in corporate bureaucracy when making decisions. It was always an intuitive decision--Jobs knew what consumers wanted even if "data told him otherwise", he noted.
Van Baker, research vice president of retail and consumer technologies at Gartner, added that Jobs always knew where he wanted the company to go and was completely confident in the vision the company had.
The veteran also did not resort to outside polling to determine product directions, which allowed the company to deliver products to consumers that they didn't know they need until they saw them, the U.S.-based analyst told ZDNet Asia in an e-mail.
"The premise of the film 'Inception' is that it is possible to seed an idea within a person's dream to persuade them that the genius of a particular course of action stems from their own unconscious desires," Windsor Holden, research director at Juniper Research wrote in a blog post. "Jobs was the mobile industry's [version of] Cobb, the film's central character--the man who planted the seeds."

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Deploy a web app linux / win

I work for a small company, which means that at any given time, we could have 3 or 4 different versions of code on developer machines that have not yet been committed to the repository. Nowadays, I would certainly go with a distributed version control system. Setup is faster since you don't need to set up a version control server and everything, all you usually need to do is initialize a certain directory within your development box for version control and you're good to go. They also seem like the way to go these days. If it were 2001, I would recommend a centralized system like Subversion. But it's 2011, everyone is moving to distributed systems and user interfaces and supporting tools tend to get better.

Some suggestions:
Git: Powerful. May take some time to understand but evolves rapidly
Tortoise svn: TortoiseSVN is an easy-to-use SCM / source control software for Microsoft Windows
Darcs: Easy to learn and has all the features you will usually need
Mercurial: Mercurial is a distributed version control system. Mercurial is dedicated to speed and efficiency with a sane user interface. It is written in Python.