Friday 31 December 2010

Determination - the 99-1 rule

I spent New Year's Eve "underground" - in my crawl space. I resurfaced 2 hours ago, wet, muddy, stinky, tired, but happy. I spent a good part of the day building a water trap to keep out the sewer stench that has been haunting our house (and entire town) for years now. With the severe snow and frost of the past weeks in NL, all plumbers were busy fixing leaking roofs and broken pipes so I was left on my own

A crawl space is the most neglected part of the house. Mine is two feet high, and a few inches lower where the concrete beams support the floor. Filled with pipes, plumbing, wires and cables, with stones, bricks and splintered concrete half hidden in the muddy soil, it isn't a place to throw a party - certainly not if you're suffering from arachnophobia

Tuesday 28 December 2010

Without the need to think, people stop doing so

Today I tweeted about yet another Pat Robertson remark that redefined the meaning of stupidity:
Snow Is God’s Way of Punishing Americans Who Were Planning to Drive to Do Something Gay
Gay not meaning jolly there of course, but homosexual.
It is comments like these that defy my -and others'- utter sense of imagination. I have lived a year in the US as an exchange student, even "did my time" graduating from High School, so have had my fair share of errrr, let's say, North-American culture and customs, but that doesn't keep me from being absolutely astonished every now and then - like now

The False Promise of "Adopt now, and all will adapt"

It's the most widespread lie across IT. Translated from seller to buyer, it says: just buy our stuff, it's great, pretty soon everyone will have it and then you'll have the advantage over all the others

It's how hypes made it in, trends, useful stuff too, but also ERP and CRM trying to take the entire pie in stead of just pieces, resulting in a considerable amount of which they couldn't eat themselves. Monolithic applications like SAP, Oracle and all the other attempts to one-size-fits-all: if applied to dynamic business processes they'll only slow you down - if not now, it'll only be a matter of time

Old meets new world: enterprise UX

A few days ago, I got a message from Derek Singleton of Software Advice telling me about a survey they're conducting: Ten Consumer Web UI Themes We’d Like to See in Business Applications is what it is called
Software Advice apparently is a company offering free advice for software buyers, and although I don't have any experience with them I think they'll give the Gartners, Forresters and McKinsey's of this world a well-needed kick-in-the-chin

Not particularly agreeing with that title, I'd rather call it "Which Consumer functionality would you use at Work"? as it's not about Web UI, but about User eXperience.
The survey gives a nice and elaborate description of 10 user interface methods, some of which I didn't know, and I wonder who knows them all. It is a one-choice-two-click survey, so you'll be done quickly with that part

Thursday 23 December 2010

The real cause of Global Warming: the Vatican

After a short Twitter conversation with the -usually- formidable, cheeky and clever Ben Kunz, I started to read some of the links he sent me, looking for references, sources, and anything else that could tell me more about the origin of data

I am not a gullible person. I have been an IT consultant since last century and recognise content-free suggestimative BS when I see it. I trust all people as well as their motives, but know that no one of the face of this earth can ever be fully objective

Wednesday 22 December 2010

Integration: your place or mine? Adopt vs adapt

Adopt versus adapt is the central theme in Integration. For the last 15 years, it's been the central question in my working life: who will adopt, and who will have to adapt? It is the most important question, as doing business is not only about mutual understanding and partnerships, but also about flattering "kings, princes and other royalties" and paying respect to the powers in place - politics, indeed.

Trouble always is, whoever is leading in business, expects to be leading in IT too - which leads to painfully ugly IT solutions every now and then

Tuesday 21 December 2010

Microsoft and Cloud - they just don't get it, do they?

On Twitter, Jon Reed pointed me to a Microsoft commercial for Cloud. I checked it out, but low and behold: the above picture is what I got

I'd like to draw attention to the fine print there:
To view this video, download the free Microsoft Silverlight plug-in (install Microsoft Silverlight)

Presentation and content hardly ever go along

[Image by Digital Surgeons, full-size image here]

After the publication of Digital Surgeons' Facebook versus Twitter infographic this week, it got quickly republished everywhere, and ReTweeted. Currently, the words "facebook twitter infographic" still get 4.2 tweets per minute

Pretty huge hey? GigaOm, TheNextWeb and ZDNet are a few of those who republished the nice and shiny graphic- apparently called infographic these days

Monday 13 December 2010

2010-2020: The Great Divide

A Great Divide is what I see for the coming decade. Not a hydrological divide of the Americas, but an IT-divide of the business.
Pretty much a follow-up from my one year-old Cloud and Social: the tectonic plates of IT 2.0, this post will show the great challenge Business and IT need to face together to make it through the coming decade: overcoming the explosion of forces that will rip up the foundations of every business: IT as we know it

Thursday 9 December 2010

Twitter, just show us the algorithm - please?

After all the various stories about the hashtag #wikileaks not appearing as a Twitter trending topic, and whether that was plain Twitter censorship, some magical (and not quantified nor explained) algorithm or the hand of God, I decided to take some measurements myself

Basis for that is Twuniverse, a collection of services that operate directly on top of the Twitter API [disclosure: Twuniverse is one of my subsidiaries]

Wednesday 8 December 2010

Enterprise 1.0 - The Dysfunctional Family?

I compared the enterprise to a dysfunctional family a little while ago. As it turns out, there are many, many similarities. Let's see how far I get on this post without writing a book in stead of a post?

Saturday 4 December 2010

(S)R in (S)CRM is for Record

After a conversation on CRM versus SCRM with Sameer Patel, Jon Husband And Rawn Shah, Rawn posted a fine piece on "Building Social Collaboration Into CRM With Customers And Within The Organization"

Too occupied with other matters at the time (and since), I promised him to read it later and comment - and this is my comment as it, again, is one of those fine blog posts resulting from a naturally flowing, seemingly casual conversation on Twitter that provokes so many thoughts and words that a comment would take more than just a few words

Wednesday 1 December 2010

Social shifts the focus from Presales to Aftersales

Another one of those great Twitter moments: a thought came to mind during a conversation
@KRCraft Let me put it this way: Marketing 1.0 is dead, just like CustServ 1.0 - better invest in Custserv 2.0 than Marketing 2.0! #custserv
I'm equally unsure whether Marketing 1.0 ever was alive, as to whether it's been officially declared dead now - regardless of the fact whether that can be attributed to any kind of Social Thingy (...)
Loosely defining Marketing 1.0 here as targeting select groups of customers in order to shattergun them with ads via all kinds of channels such as (direct) mail, (public) commercials and advertisements

Monday 29 November 2010

Do you Fear the End-Of-Year - like Judgment Day?

Targets - Selling targets, purchase targets, license targets, billable hours targets, call-close targets: if you work for a large company, you probably have some. Sometimes also called Key Performance Indicators (KPI's).
But did you choose them, or were they forced on to you - whose are they? Yours? Your company's? Or theirs?
And what is their goal - really?

If you're a salesperson, you get sales targets. If a marketing person, there are marketing targets. When you work for a systems integrator (SI), you'll probably have billable hour targets.

Thursday 25 November 2010

Klout. Nail. Coffin. Who cares?

[Showing true and visible Influence, "The swirl at the wingtip traces the aircraft's wake vortex, which exerts a powerful influence on the flow field behind the plane"]

This is my last post on @Klout - period

Tuesday 23 November 2010

The social threshold - why cross it?

I live in a small town, just a few hundred households. With the dense population overhere, it's less than a square mile altogether, half of which being pastries, ditches, and other greenish stuff.

I chose to live here on purpose.We were driving down the highway, looking for towns to live in, and I said to my wife "I want to live somewhere where people still say Hi to each other". One minute after that, we ended up in the town where we've been living for over 10 years now

Friday 19 November 2010

E1.0 is childhood, E2.0 is adolescence

Our oldest daughter is starting to become an adolescent. Even from a distance, you can see and sometimes almost feel the hormones racing through her little kids' body. It's part of life and a process to undergo, but Oh my - what a ride. Did time erode the memories of my own adolescence? I guess it did

A while ago the thought crossed my mind
@hjarche @esauve Most enterprises are like families where the kids are 30-40, still living there and still treated as kids #wirearchy
and I tweeted that

Thursday 18 November 2010

Why I think @Klout is Krap

After my last post it wasn't hard to come up with this devious title. At the defrag conference, Philip Hotchkiss from Klout took the stage, resulting in a few tweets about the perceived value and accuracy of Klout
Update 18th November 16:03 CET: Philip tweeted me that it wasn't him, but a colleague - without saying who that was. So, it wasn't Philip - who, by the way, is Chief Product Officer at Klout
I have had my share of issues with Klout here and here, and via email.
On the first one, I got no reaction from Klout - they just fixed the problem behind my back without ever getting back at me.
On the second one, I got one rather silly reaction from their Marketing Manager who isolated a tiny issue and ignored the vast majority.
Being extremely unimpressed with the quality and consistency of Klout's service, I tried to unsubscribe and delete my account. I couldn't, no such functionality. I asked via email, and first had to explain why I wanted to do so. After a few emails and two weeks, Klout reported my account to have "been successfully removed" - as it turns out, that was a lie

Tuesday 16 November 2010

Capgemini's comma-splice: results over people?

An obvious screenshot from the renewed site, here's the latest Capgemini slogan
Capgemini presented a glossy new site this Monday, announced and talked about on Twitter.

It looks really suave, but not everything has moved correctly: the Capping It Off blog seems to have been broken, still showing my last one, but without the picture and posted by someone else than me - oh well. If you move the slider in the Media box from Video to Blog, it's there on Capgemini's home page - a nice tribute ;-)

Sunday 14 November 2010

Enterprise 2.0: a simple SWOT analysis

My last blog post, Enterprise 2.0: The Prodigal Parent, caused quite a stir. Countless reactions in the form of tweets, comments and blog posts, followed. Critics, hand wavers, and everyone in between, of both camps and others, had an opinion and voiced them, one more successful than the other - IMO strongly depending on their ability to exclude themselves from the discussion at hand

I strongly dislike debates - they serve the ego. It strikes me that every single person who has blogged on this issue, has taken the time to react to comments posted - except one. I commented on Andrew's post, yet I'm still waiting for his response (but certainly not holding my breath)

I didn't start it all to be deemed right. I didn't start it either to divide. I started it all, in order to unite

Wednesday 10 November 2010

Enterprise 2.0: The Prodigal Parent

Stranger titles have appeared on this blog...

Following the Enterprise 2.0 conference on Twitter via its hashtag #e2conf, I noticed a strange phenomenon: most tweets weren't about Enterprise 2.0, but Social Business

In a post of over a year ago, appropriately titled Social Business Design - the beginning or end of E2.0?, I wondered what Dachis' definition was going to do to Andrew McAfee's, and now it seems, the time has come to pass the verdict

Monday 8 November 2010

A Company's Four Seasons

Lately I tweeted and viewed some tweets and pics about Autumn, or Fall for you Americans out there, and today I thought that the season-life cycle isn't only for nature, or humans, but companies as well: there are Four Seasons to a company

Saturday 23 October 2010

On the Return On R&D

After my last post, where I showed Apple to be the least innovative company around, some words were exchanged on that conclusion (...). Needless to say, after crushing Larry Ellison's suggestimation on Oracle having a way bigger and better R&D than SAP and IBM, only quantitative arguments were brought forth, and by only one person

So, why now? To tell you the truth, the figures on Apple were quite sobering

Wednesday 20 October 2010

Want another Apple? No thanks?!

For those who follow my blog closely, they'll recognise the picture; I've used it before and thought it would be very apt for this post too.
After yesterday's announcement of Q4 results, the web is full of buzz surrounding Apple and its giant achievements for this year - and rightfully so

In this post I'll show the financial path Apple has traveled in the last 5 years, and why I think their glory ride to be over.

Tuesday 19 October 2010

Enterprise Landscaping

Behold the second piece of my garden, together with some part of the bridge. The pile of tiles is there to nag me so I'll leave Twitter and blogging alone and get to redo this piece of garden

Redo? Yes, redo. When looking for inspiration today, Henk van Zuilekom was kind enough to give me "one of those tasks":
@ draw a parallel between re-doing legacy applications and re-doing a garden. where does it all go wrong?

Thursday 7 October 2010

Facebook Groups: their own Trojan Horse

When Facebook announced their Facebook Groups yesterday, I had a funny feeling. I was following Augie Ray who was doing an absolutely great job at live-tweeting the event, and there were a lot of words used. A lot. An awful lot, really.
What was the big news? Well, you are now allowed to download your own stuff, and there now are Groups on Facebook

Downloading is what you think it would be, and Groups also are what you would think it would be. Still, so much noise around these 2 small and slight improvements

Wednesday 6 October 2010

Labor laws in Europe, and resignation

Given the amount of conversations I've had lately about resignation, and the apparent lack of knowledge from people outside of the Netherlands about our Labour Law (not surprisingly), I deemed it fit to write up a short one on resignation, and the situation in Europe regarding that

In the Netherlands, everyone has a notice period for resignation / termination: the employee usually has 1 to 2 months notice, for the employer it depends on the amount of years someone is employed:

Monday 4 October 2010

The Evangelist, the Priest and the Monk?

I eavesdropped on a conversation yesterday between Olivier Blanchard and David Armano. Tracing it back, this is where it started:

David ended that Twitter day with
building is harder than tearing
no doubt referring to this debate. I call it debate, because for some its obvious goal was about getting right. It all started with Olivier's fun and provocative post Turning a new leaf. A happy leaf

Sunday 3 October 2010

Can HP and Leo give Larry a hard time?

After the news of Leo Apotheker joining HP, ample comments arose: Dennis Howlett's,Vinnie Mirchandani's, Ray Wang's, and Horses for Sources' are only a few of those. Above, an artist's impression of what the new SAHP would look like.
(Just kidding, it's a
NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope image capturing the chaotic activity atop a pillar of gas and dust, three light-years tall, which is being eaten away by the brilliant light from nearby bright stars. The pillar is also being assaulted from within, as infant stars buried inside it fire off jets of gas that can be seen streaming from towering peaks
- thought that it'd make a nice picture)

Saturday 2 October 2010

Dummy's Guide to Standardisation

I was going to write something about open and closed IT standards, but was struggling. It turns out to be rather hard to define exactly what open and closed are, when it comes to IT standards. That's why I postponed this post, but fortunately Dick Hirsch reminded me of it, so here it is

Why this post? Because we are growing towards a more and more standardised world. Cloud is going to hugely drive standardisation, and Social Media are going to hugely drive mutual understanding and co-operation. Even though I once said that these are two forces at work that will greatly disrupt IT 1.0, they will work together on one thing: unifying this little planet - and my business will contribute to that

Friday 24 September 2010

Larry's magic numbers - bite him in the butt

At Oracle Open World, aka #oow10 on Twitter, a lot happened. Fair to say that, whatever you think of it, at least it stirred up things. "Cloud in a box" (bringing back to me fond memories of my first AS400, and later my first ICL mainframe), putting down as not-Cloud, Larry sure got things going this week

A tweet on Oracle R&D from Michael Fauscette, however, was too bold:

#oow10 R&D budget over 6 yrs grew: IBM 6% total, SAP 60%, Oracle 192%

It was his tweet, but it's fair to assume those figures were copied from the Oracle-stage or -screen. By the way you might want to read this related post by Vinnie Mirchandani on the special treatment of analysts by Oracle

Monday 20 September 2010

Why the EA isn't ready for #E20

As an enterprise Architect, I like to think in little cubicles. Not the 10 square feet cubicles as depicted above, but more like this one:

Saturday 18 September 2010

Failure is the means to the goal of Success

Failure. #FAIL. Miserable failure. The agony, the shame, the hurt ego, the lost pride.
Somehow we need to be right, and fear to be (proven) wrong. How come?

It's not in our genes, but in our head. When we became adolescents we started to mistake goal for means: but the means are not success, the means are failure. When you fail over and over again, in the end there's only success left

Friday 17 September 2010

Twitter's accidental path to monetisation

I like a challenge every now and then, and when I'm lacking them, I usually create them myself
For the past weeks and months, I've been watching and wondering about the speed Twitter moves with towards scarcity

If you paid attention in economics class, you'll have learned that scarcity is key to profit and loss

Tuesday 14 September 2010

How locked-in are you, really?

In over a dozen years working in the field of Business Process Integration, I have seen many, many forms of lock-in. In Core-business versus business criticality I explained the misunderstanding most businesses suffer from.
Typically, the less knowledge a company has of something, the greater the lock-in - and vice versa

Monday 13 September 2010

From profitability to extortion: IT comparison

In August I wrote the Product to service financial ratio, that dealt with the fact that there is a certain ratio between what you pay for a product, and the service provided on it
A twitter conversation on (vendor) implementation cost to software license cost ratios was the source for that.
Today, I present a different comparison: vendors, consultants and system integrators: those that build, advise on or implement the software

Saturday 4 September 2010

Social from an Architectural PoV

From an architectural Point of View, the world looks rather classy, and simple. "Errrr yeah dude, it's round, looks like a world even, at least a world like we know it, Jim"

All kidding aside, this post is a serious attempt to turn debate into dialogue. If you ask me: "what is Social all about"? my answer will be: there are many shades of Social, neatly cubicleisable (inventing that word as we speak)

Thursday 2 September 2010

Twitter economics: corset creates value

Commenting on The Spirituality of Social Media by Mark Schaefer, I found myself in immediate need of another blog post when I wrote
I see amazingly, astonishingly little verbal abuse on Twitter. The awesome strength of 140-character limitation forces us all to be sparingly with our words, and think very well about them

Friday 27 August 2010

ServiceDeskPhobia: one-idiot-fits-all

Today I had the unpleasant experience that my company's email server was down - all morning and well into the after lunch dip even. So, after a few tries, I sighed and picked up the phone to call the Service Desk

Saturday 21 August 2010

The product-to-service financial ratio

Yesterday I saw a tweet by Frank Scavo:
Chatting with a vendor about implementation cost to software license cost ratios.
What followed next was somewhat of a diabate (sic) by me with Frank and Dennis Howlett.

Wednesday 18 August 2010

Why #VRM is Fools' Gold

There, off my chest. Vendor Relationship Management indeed is Fools' Gold
Now, all I need to do is argument that, and I'll have a few extra enemies. Cool!

Just kidding - right?

Friday 13 August 2010

Would more Influence fix your self-esteem?

Over the last few days, ye good olde Influence discussions have been going across the Twitterverse like crazy. It's the end of Summer, and the very beginning of it was marked by Fast Company's influence project which in fact turned out to be one big showroom for the insecure longing for attention and recognition

ReadWriteWeb did a piece on influence and popularity, Marketing profs did a piece on influence and popularity, Brian Solis did a piece on influence and popularity - heck what can I add to that?

A lot

Wednesday 11 August 2010

Twitter Tweet Button Test

This is a simple test post for the new Twitter Tweet button. According to Mashable it will be released very soon

Wednesday 4 August 2010

Social Trojan Horse versus Troj enterprise

My latest blog post has gotten great views and comments. Any other post "lives" only a day or so but this one has been getting ReTweets for 10 days straight in a row

Other blog posts come along, tweets and comments ping-pong, and then Spiro Spiliadis makes a very insightful comment about a situation where adoption meets adaption. Somehow my answer was about the Social Trojan Horse...

I've said it before and I'll keep saying it: the eternal Circle of Creation of Twitter and blogs where ideas freely flow and bend or break or divide like cells, I just love it

Monday 26 July 2010

Generations, Social and Enterprise: adopt vs adapt

[Never mind the Dutch text please, it's the only picture I could find apt enough]

Today I read the words adopt, social and enterprise and tweeted:
You can't adopt Social to the Enterprise, you have to adapt the Enterprise to Social
That led to a small storm of ReTweets by various other people; apparently I wasn't the only one thinking this

Sunday 18 July 2010

sCRM, the M:M Customer Crush?


In my last post I dove into Social CRM tools and what they do, or enable companies to do. It didn't strike me until later that there actually is a real danger in executing Social CRM: it destroys relationships we currently are used to - in our company.

Friday 16 July 2010

Social (hiccup) CRM tools

In the past few days there has been quite some fuss about Social CRM, to which my post did contribute a bit I guess. As always, tweets were exchanged as a result and there was some destruction but also a lot of construction

First, some disclosure: as an Enterprise Integration Architect and a linguist I believe in natural diversity and detest the idea of one-size-fits-all. The only one-size-fits-all is real, physical death - and even that gets dealt in tailormade portions.

Wednesday 14 July 2010

Attribution: a lost art?

With thanks to Sameer Patel, on whose tweet I based this title. And with thanks to Creative Commons of course for using their newest Attribution icon

Attribution seems to be turning into a lost art form, at least in my social web

First, I totally agree. I answered

The New Polymath Booktour - Amsterdam

Amsterdam event 13:00 - 13:45, 21st July 2010, Capgemini, Amsterdam, Hoogoorddreef 15

Featured Speaker: Vinnie Mirchandani, author of the recently published book, The New Polymath. And a raffle of a few copies of the book.
Update July 30th 14:07 CET: below a picture of Vinnie giving his tailormade presentation (Outsourcing in an age of AND not OR) at Capgemini Amsterdam
The Book