Weekend Reading

This week’s links:

  • Innovation in India: from the New York Times. “Many Indians are disappointed that the country has not quickly moved up to more ambitious and lucrative work from answering phones or writing software. Why, they worry, hasn’t India produced a Google or an Apple?”
  • How do Innovators think: from Harvard Business Review (via Atanu). “We’ve found that 15% of executives are deeply innovative, meaning they’ve invented a new product or started an innovative venture. But the problem is that even the most creative people are often careful about asking questions for fear of looking stupid, or because they know the organization won’t value it.”
  • The Price of Gold: by Egon von Greyerz (via Keith Hudson). “Gold is not going up. Instead gold is doing what it has always done, namely maintaining its value and purchasing power. What we are seeing currently is the total annihilation of paper money whether it is Dollars, Pounds or Euros etc.”
  • Apple’s Game Changer: from the NewYork Times. On Apps. “Thanks in large part to the iPhone, introduced in 2007, and the App Store, which opened its doors last year, smartphones have become the Swiss Army knives of the digital age.”
  • The Rise and Fall of MySpace: from Financial Times. A fascinating account.

Published by

Rajesh Jain

An Entrepreneur based in Mumbai, India.

4 thoughts on “Weekend Reading”

  1. I think this line is important when comparing Bangalore to California: ” “We were in an economy where, forget innovation, expansion was discouraged, creating wealth was frowned upon, there was no competition to speak of,” said Anand G. Mahindra “. India will take some time to reach to that level. Although I am sure it is mostly about time, VCs, education etc will all fall in place as soon as the mentality is in place

  2. Society is the spawning ground for innovation. Of the large number of eggs laid, only a few become the big catch while most become food for the predators in the chain. Traditionally, middle class Indians are risk-averse. They encourage their children to take up a cushy and mundane government job even in preference to a private sector employment which comes with no lifetime guarantees. Parents, business leaders and mentors have to work hard on communications with young people to change this culture so that young people with knowledge, skills, abilities, enthusiasm, and the spark will begin the innovation revolution. It does not mean that the society guarantees success but only provides succor to those that get bruised in their attempts.
    Even rich families in the traditional merchant communities (I hate to bring in the caste reference here) encourage their children to invest in traditional businesses rather than in innovative projects. Of course, this practice is better as it creates jobs rather than seeks jobs. Certain other groups have been investing a lot of money in the movie business, which is unstructured risk taking driven merely by passion.
    In the US, DARPA (Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency) initiates projects based on high-risk high-payoff ideas. India (business people and government) should be tolerant towards failure in ventures that can be risky rather than killing the psyche of potential innovators. They should promote considered investments in novel products and services that could bring about great benefits to the world.

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