Classic Hugh!

I want the world222

Enough said.

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Frank Gillett talks Cloud Envy

Frank Gillett of Forrester speaks about the cloud envy of various companies who jump on the cloud computing bandwagon by rebranding existing services. Whoa! new buzz words here, “Cloud Envy”, “Cloud Spray”, and “Cloud Washing”.

Is it me, or is Cloud Computing just getting too confusing? Especially as Steve notes, all of the the ‘xxxxx as a service’ platforms taking shape. Software and hardware vendors are going to have a to do a good job on making this ‘white fluffy’ stuff easier to understand. Though perhaps, Cloud Computing is nothing but smoke and mirrors? Old services being rebranded with new “fashion” labels as Larry Ellison points out.

Anyone who know of a simple guide to Cloud Computing?  Perhaps the chaps at Common Craft could create a great video?

Hot Off The Press…


I’m feeling a little bit proud today. Back in March this year, I was awarded BCS Chartered IT Professional Membership. Today, my name and quite a few others were published in today’s Daily Telegraph, how great is that?  You can find me near the top of the fourth column!

“…Chartered IT Professional membership (CITP), is a gold standard for people to aspire to: experience,
proof of competence, academic achievement – a total package underpinned by a code of conduct”.
The BCS began offering its members chartered IT professional status in 2004. Four years later, 18,000
members have earned the right to put CITP after their names.”

Becoming a CITP is great. However, it has to mean more than just letters after my name. So, over the coming time ahead I’m going to see if I can find ways to reach out with the BCS and give something back to the industry.

Can’t get to a copy of the Telegraph today? Download a PDF version of all the Chartered IT Professionals here.  Well done to all the newly minted CITP’s . A proud day for all of our mums!

[Extra] Wendy Grossman reports on how professional status within the computer industry could help companies choose the right people

It’s FOWA time again in London!!

Confirmed. I will be attending the FOWA conference again in a few weeks time.  This year’s speaker list looks impressive as ever. I’m particularly looking forward to Jeff Barr’s talk on Amazon Web Services and talks from Jason Calacanis from and Blaine Cook, formerly of Twitter.  Of course, it will be great to watch the live filming of Diggnation once again!

  • You can expect live Twitter coverage, so don’t forget to follow me.
  • Photos, videos and blog posts from the both of the two days
  • I’m going to be armed with my Flip Video camera, so expect the odd impromptu interview.

If you are planning to attend FOWA, leave a quick comment to arrange a meet up?

What, you haven’t signed up yet?  Click on the banner ad above.

    * Special thanks to Jo and Natasha at Carsonified *

Bill and Jerry create the perfect Meatball Sundae

The second instalment of the Bill Gates and Jerry Seinfeld video, promoting Windows Vista has just been released. The series of videos are designed to help counteract Apple’s Mac bashing PC videos, which have received much praise in recent times. Microsoft has remained fairly silent in response to Apple’s video campaign, until now that is.

Microsoft have enlisted the help of the American comedian, Jerry Seinfeld for their videos. There’s something in common with the humour of the Microsoft ad campaign and with the American comedy, Arrested Development. I wasn’t sure about the first video release, but the second one above is fantastic.  See below for the first ad.


So where’s the relevance?  Well, Microsoft are doing something both interesting and exciting with these videos. The ‘Bill and Jerry’ effect is causing a lot of discussion within the blogosphere. There’s almost a Marmite like quality to the discussion – You either love the videos, or you you hate them. They have created, what Seth Godin describes as a ‘Meatball Sundae’

"A meatball sundae is the unfortunate result of mixing two good ideas. The meatballs are the foundation, the things we need (and sometimes want). These are the commodities that so many businesses are built on.  The sundae toppings (hot fudge and the like) are the New Marketing, the social networks, Google, blogs and fancy stuff that make people all excited".

If Bill and Jerry are the foundation ‘Meatballs’. The ‘Sundae’ surely is how the videos are going viral. Microsoft has aided this by creating a YouTube page to help the masses watch the videos and more importantly, to help bloggers embed them!  The point here is that the videos are memorable, people are talking about them whether they like them or not.  The videos provoke a discussion.  So far, there’s been no mention of  Windows Vista which I feel is deliberate.

It is too early to tell whether these series of videos will be successful in changing  the public feeling of Windows Vista. But, used as a tool to start a conversation about Microsoft and to continue that conversation, these ads are creating the perfect meatball sundae.

[UPDATE] – Mary Jo-Foley posts her view on the second ad

Grab Office 2007 for less than a tank of diesel!

Indeed, Microsoft UK are selling Office 2007 for the bargain price of £38.95 in their Ultimate Steal Promotion.  What’s the catch?  You have to be in academia and have a registered email address.  I made use of this offer last year and I am very glad I did! 

Terms and Conditions apply

This post is dedicated to all those in UK Universities. I think I’m missing my days stressing over essays!

Big Business jumping on the Twitter bandwagon?


If 2007 was the year of Facebook and Social Networking. Then 2008 is shaping up to be the year of what has been dubbed "microblogging". BusinessWeek have just published a special report, entitled the CEO Guide to  Microblogging which makes interesting reading,

This special report includes several features on how microblogging tools such as Twitter, Pownce, and Jaiku are being used.  The article looks at how well known American companies such as, JetBlue, Dell, and GM are taking advantage of the power of these new breed of  "social connection" tools.  Whether a company is listening for customer feedback, answering questions, or otherwise helping the customer meet their needs. Big companies are finding the customer at the point of need.

Here’s a quick synopsis of the BusinessWeek Special Report:

  • How Companies Use Twitter to Bolster Their Brands provides a few examples of how companies are reacting and engaging with consumers. JetBlue reacted with stunning speed to a Tweet about one of their terminals. GM corporate communications helped a customer in need when buying a Saturn car. Southwest Airlines empathised with a customer who lost his luggage.
  • CEOs’ Take on Twitter – Twitteriing CEO profiles: how 18 leaders and entrepreneurs are using Twitter for work and play.
  • Engaging with customers with the use of  Twitter – a look at how companies are conversing and sharing directly with their customers. The customer has the microphone and is in the driver’s seat – companies are getting onboard for the ride… and the conversation.

Web 2.0 technologies coupled with a focus on listening, are helping businesses to reach out to a previously underserved segment of its potential customer base. The report also provides general tips and examples that will be familiar for those who have already adopted 140 character exchanges of links, information, and socialisation into their daily routines. What’s significant is that businesses not already visiting these online gathering areas will find it increasingly harder to ignore the unfolding opportunities.