Thursday, September 27, 2007

FR33 53X

It seems that even VoIP services follow the fad of fiddle with product and brand names. Here are few examples of product names that were given birth as a pun or a similar sounding word>
  • Twitter was Twttr, internet ages ago, just recalling the "twitter" name
  • ICQ means I seek You
  • CUSeeme was See You See me
  • Italian chat program "C6" by meant "are you there?"

The last application, the mentioned VoIP application, is called 3CX Phone System (a free, upgradable software IP-PBX, check out the review from Luca Filigheddu ).
3 C X
Three See Ex
Free Sex
, to me.

Was it intentional or am I just too pervert to see free sex everywhere? ;-)

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Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Truphone on iPhone: call setup time too long?

Take a look at the Truphone on iPhone video on Andy Abramson log: do you consider 20" call setup a reasonable waiting time?

I do not. Most of you do not. And the poor man's thought is: "Truphone is no good, I want to call and instantly be connected, this does not happen with traditional telephony! Truphone service is bad".
But the truth is that Truphone is not the real culprit. Its only fault is that it relies upon a VoIP wholesale carrier, whose service is usually offered as "best effort".
Therefore there is no guarantee, no performance metrics, no quality figures: no way to assess the overall quality of phone calls.

As Luca already stated, VoIP service providers are subject to slavery by wholesale carriers.

On a Porterian point of view, the VoIP market was born in danger due to
  • the high rivalry from other competitors,
  • the lack of customer lock in (except for Skype, standard SIP means no lock in),
  • the easeness of new player entrance.
Now, the VoIP market situation is aggravated by the enormous power of suppliers, which can decide the destiny of a service by simply providing (or not providing) a sufficient quality of phone termination.

Trying to explain your customers that the fault is on your service provider is not wise: on the contrary, giving such an excuse yields the customer the impression that you are just a cockdodger.

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Push or pull?

Seth Godin talks about push and pull methodologies. Apart from the marketing considerations, I see that push and pull are fundamental tasks in the work process and both have to be balanced well. But what captured my attention is this sentence:
I can't use internal wikis. "It's on the wiki" is a dumb thing to say to me.
I expect my team to check on the wiki because it's not useful to broadcast each information to everybody. Except when needed, information has to be stored on a "pull" mechanism. Luckily, most of the wikis provide a RSS feed on the latest changes.

Usually we forgive someone's lack of discipline if the element has some creative behaviour, in this case we justify everything with a sentence: "he's a genious, you cannot trap his mind in this or that process". Most of the creative people I've met are totally inept at managing simple tasks like:
  • retrieve a document previously stored in the document management system, however it is categorized or tagged, even by means of the custom search engine
  • complete tasks in an ordered way and notify the rest of the team
  • remember decisions and keep coherent behavior when analyzing scenarios. If you've changed your mind, notify others that you've changed your mind and why
  • before answering "it's not my duty" think. re-think and be completely sure that it' not your duty
  • make a move before someone asks you about the status of a project,
  • avoid replying that you're waiting for X or Y to complete a task when somebody questions about the task status you're responsible of (That's what I call cockdodging!)
That's something that you can balance with a smart, ingenious mind, charisma and a really good idea that makes the rest of the team happy to work with...
But if you're not that kind of person and you just behave as "creative", you're just a dead corpse on the boat.

Since good ideas do not happen here and there, I advise the reader to do the best to behave well in a team, be cooperative, and organized.

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Thursday, September 20, 2007

Sitofono at the EADP Paris Congress

We are presenting the Sitòfono product at the EADP Congress, the international conference on Phone Directories and Yellow Pages, held in Paris at the Westin Hotel.

The place is fantastic, luxurious furniture and great staff.
I've taken some pictures, have a look on my Flickr EADP tagset

Sitofono at the EADP CongressJust a note: yesterday we were looking for a good, cheap restaurant. We looked at the Pages Jaunes, the printed version. As an "always connected" person (sort of), I've missed several things:
  • Customer rating: how can I judge the quality of the restaurant? At last, we had to personally check with a stroll to the place
  • Enhanced details: opening hours? Available places? Does it provide vegetarian diet?
  • Promptness: look for the street address in the list of streets, get the map page number, x and y coordinates, look for the street in the square, elaborate directions
  • Check with a phone call: in this case, since I don't speak french I hadn't called but I usually call the restaurant and ask few questions if I cannot get all the information presented above, and eventually I book a table.
What if all this happens in a single web page?

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Friday, September 14, 2007

Bad rabbits are here!!!

You know, Hictu! is the microvideologging platform I like most. I know, I work for the company which develops Hictu but I've chosen to have no insights of what's going on it and it's real fun to discover the new features as a "normal" user.
That's my worst video post on Hictu, grabbed after a really tough week, check it out :)

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