Thursday, 28 June 2007

Buzz in the bay

Having just returned from my recent trip to Silicon Valley, it's great to see the 'bay area' buzzing again with tech start-ups …it is very high energy out there right now. Car parks are full, 101 South is jammed at rush hour and Starbucks is packed with everyone ‘doing deals’ just like the boom times of the late 90s.

At the peak of the down turn all 3 were empty (though Starbucks always survived on stay at home moms and the retired) and there was a general depressing malaise in the air… ….where the general overheard conversations were about where to get a job, the company’s latest losses..the dramatic drop in house prices and who was the latest victim of cut backs…but that’s now all firmly in the past.

Yes, boom times are here again, you can see it everywhere, the San Francisco Chronicle is covering it all the time. And isn't everyone just jumping on that bandwagon hoping to make a quick buck…but as was learnt last time around…it’s only a small core of those that really hit the big-time…..and those are the ones with a sound business strategy, good marketing and not just a great new Web 2.0 idea ...

However, the industry is saying that it's different this time. Let's hope so, we don’t want to go through the same boom and bust process as before…Whilst the Web 2.0 manic frenzy seems very similar to the .com era of 99/2000, there are also some very credible businesses changing the face of our working and personal lives forever. For the very latest on what's happening check out and

And finally, this is the first year that I really could carry my laptop around remote accessing wherever I went…Starbucks, my hotel, San Francisco airport (which meant I nearly missed my flight), small independent cafes…yes it all finally works which it certainly didn’t 18 months ago.. the productivity was high with no time wasted.

Though my laptop hasn’t worked properly since I’ve been back so the remote access world is still not perfect after all!

And finally, if you are a visitor, do take a trip out to Sausalito…the views back to San Francisco are ‘awesome’.

Wednesday, 27 June 2007

Store n Forward Networks in Nelson's Navy

Back from break by the lovely - it was really - English Channel. Deal has the last standing 18th century Timeball tower on the coast. This used to keep the Royal Navy's ships on time. Before that it was the first tower in a line of towers that used semaphore to send a message from the fleet to London. In 2 minutes. I was impressed by the speed and how the principles of store n forward data comms is traceable to the time of jolly jack tars and press gangs. Anyway back to the day job...

Tuesday, 12 June 2007

Green Computing is Sprouting Column Inches

It's really taken off but can't move for green computing stories. One we particularly like - but can't claim as our idea though we were talking to a prospect about green data centres a couple of months ago - is the cyber warming stories in the media this week. A clever "greening" of the shared service idea, it also makes me nostalgic for my days trying to get journos to stop writing about PCs and write about Wyse terminals and IBM mainframes instead.

Green tech is very chic as I found when I discovered the Treehugger blog last week when working on a client project. The blog goes into green consumerism in a depth that I've never seen over here. To find out why GBC went green last week check out the New Scientist story on a GMI poll or visit the International Herald Tribune's Green Business blog