Time-savers

[via Atanu] Julie Mogenstern gives some tips:

Shorten your workday. If 10 hours isnt enough, try nine-and-a-half. Losing 30 minutes of work time each day makes you organize your time better. No longer will you tolerate interruptions… make personal phone calls from the office… or chat around the water cooler. Your pace will pick up, your focus will sharpen, and youll soon find that youre getting more done despite the shorter workday.

Dont look at E-mail first thing. Instead, use the morning to focus on your most important tasks. Most peoples minds are sharpest in the morning, and completing important responsibilities before lunch creates a sense of relief and accomplishment that can carry you through the afternoon.

Search Report

Piper Jaffrey has released a new report:

[The] report titled, “The User Revolution,” discussing the new advertising ecosystem and the rise of the Internet as a mass medium. In the report, the team outlines its expectations that global online advertising revenue will reach $81.1 billion by 2011, representing a 21 percent compound-annual-growth-rate (2006-2011).

The report defines user revolution as a major trend that is happening primarily with consumers, who are taking control of content consumption and branding. “The historically passive consumer is changing rapidly, not only becoming more informed and confident about purchase decisions, but also increasingly taking control of the consumption of information and content that used to be distributed by networks, studios, publishers and retailers,” said Safa Rashtchy, senior research analyst at Piper Jaffray. “We believe this will cause a significant rise in prominence of the Internet as a major content consumption and marketing medium.”

Indian Economy

India Knowledge@Wharton writes about the views of two economists on what could derail the ‘India Express’:

Shanta Devarajan, who serves as chief economist for the World Bank’s South Asia region, takes issue with the popular notion that there simply isn’t enough infrastructure — power, water, transportation networks, etc. — to sustain India’s robust economic growth rate of more than 8.6%.

“All this talk about infrastructure is missing the point,” Devarajan insisted. In many cases, the problem lies in mismanagement of the existing infrastructure, which gets gummed up in patronage politics. For example, he said, the “free” provision of water means that little money exists for maintenance or upgrades that could supply water around the clock. Clean, ubiquitous water on demand, meanwhile, is one of the marks of a fully developed country. Such well-developed infrastructure makes a country more attractive to foreign investment.

Arvind Subramanian, a division chief for the IMF’s Research Department, thinks that people need to adopt a more nuanced view of government’s role. He lamented the popular notion of “private sector ingenuity and public sector ineptitude” as an oversimplification. India’s blistering economic growth, which took root in earnest during the 1980s, actually owes much to having serviceable, if imperfect institutions, and to considerable reform within them, he said.

Searching in Malls

The New York Times writes:

Search engines made it easy to find items at online stores. Now the Internet is poised to solve a more vexing problem: finding items while you are at the mall.

Technology companies like NearbyNow of Los Altos, Calif., and GPShopper in New York have introduced mobile Internet applications that allow shoppers to use their cellphones and PDAs to search the inventory and prices at the local mall, save them wasted steps and, sometimes, turn up last-minute bargains and promotions.

Virtualisation Effect

WSJ writes:

Computer users are…cutting the cost of buying and maintaining servers and reducing energy bills needed to keep them running. But the trend — exploiting software that uses a technique called “virtualization” — could be starting to take a toll on computer makers.

There was a surprising slowdown in unit sales of x86 servers in the fourth quarter, according to two prominent research firms, Gartner Inc. and IDC. For example, IDC found that sales grew just 1.1% to 1.85 million units, compared with 8.8% growth in the third quarter. That is the worst performance for the market segment since the dot-com bust, and IDC analyst Matt Eastwood lays the blame largely on virtualization.

“It’s a fact,” agrees Thomas Bittman, a Gartner analyst. Though companies will still buy servers, virtualization “is absolutely going to have a slowing effect” on server sales.

TECH TALK: Envisioning Tomorrows World: Imagine

The big opportunities in tomorrows world lie in creating solutions to alleviate daily inconveniences in urban India and to increase incomes in rural India. The PC Internet is limited by various factors low installed base of PCs, poor broadband penetration and access that is for the majority of the audience limited to cybercafes. By contrast, a world built around teleputers, the Ubinet and the M-Web can create new opportunities.

Imagine the nearby kirana store lets call it Ajay Kirana. It can now publish regular updates on deals and even unsold perishable items. My mother may want to subscribe to Ajay Kiranas updates on her teleputer. She can then decide once she gets the update if she wants to get the bread at half-price. Or, imagine a toy company providing regular updates to new parents on what are the best toys to buy along with parenting tips. This does not have to be limited to text it can come with rich media attachments. Imagine a TV broadcaster sending out updates at 8:30 pm providing a small preview of the 9 pm soap opera my wife would love a service like that!

Small book publishers could build relationships by sending out regular updates of new books to subscribers, and even take orders and payments via the teleputer. For those who would like to listen, there could be audio serials sent out daily. Imagine getting a small abstract from religious scriptures to begin ones day.

In rural India, the teleputer can be the instrument for person-to-person classifieds. People could publish what they would like to buy or sell via their teleputer (which could either be owned by them or be shared device). Subscribers from nearby villagers could then be alerted if their needs match what has been put up.

The multimedia-rich teleputer could also be used by job seekers for creating multimedia profiles of themselves. The same idea could be applied for those seeking marriage partners. In fact, small videos could also be made of cars and apartments for sale. Subscribers could then get much more than a simple text description.

There are many such innovative ideas which can come into play once the digital infrastructure has been created. Perhaps, the biggest opportunities lie in rethinking education and healthcare around a school-in-a-box concept (as put forth by Atanu Dey) and personal healthcare records, respectively.

Tomorrow: SMEs

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