The Creative Brain On Exercise | Fast Company

The Creative Brain On Exercise | Fast Company: "Studies now prove that aerobic exercise both increases the size of the prefrontal cortex and facilitates interaction between it and the amygdala. This is vitally important to creators because the prefrontal cortex, as we discussed earlier, is the part of the brain that helps tamp down the amygdala's fear and anxiety signals."

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In the Studio with CRN: Managing channel conflict - 22 Sep 2011 - CRN UK video Interview

In the Studio with CRN: Managing channel conflict - 22 Sep 2011 - CRN UK video Interview:

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Spotlight on distribution: Survival of the fattest? - 06 Sep 2010 - CRN UK Analysis

Spotlight on distribution: Survival of the fattest? - 06 Sep 2010 - CRN UK Analysis: " With Avnet, Arrow, Ingram Micro and Tech Data back in buying mode, two-thirds of you are convinced this powerful quar­tet will eventually dominate the UK scene.
Over the past 12 months, consolidation has torn through the UK distribution market like a whirlwind, with CCD, Rocom, Bell and Sphinx among those to have been swept up by larger counterparts."

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The Phony Solyndra Scandal - NYTimes.com

The Phony Solyndra Scandal - NYTimes.com: "But if we could just stop playing gotcha for a second, we might realize that federal loan programs — especially loans for innovative energy technologies — virtually require the government to take risks the private sector won’t take. Indeed, risk-taking is what these programs are all about. Sometimes, the risks pay off. Other times, they don’t. It’s not a taxpayer ripoff if you don’t bat 1.000; on the contrary, a zero failure rate likely means that the program is too risk-averse. Thus, the real question the Solyndra case poses is this: Are the potential successes significant enough to negate the inevitable failures?"

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Of Netflix, Hastings and Hasty Decisions

Ever tried taking away a toy from your 5 year old? Surprising that Reed Hastings and the board of Netflix missed out on that little perceivable outcome to their decision when they started charging their DVD service customers a separate fee for Streaming; increasing the price for those loyal customers, who were subscribed to both services. 1 million subscribers unsubscribed in anger, most loyal customers turned ferocious, stock plunged.
Clearly, this strategy has royally boomeranged on Hastings, who true to his last name, hastily made a few amends. ( They backfired too!)

I mean, lets look at the mail that he wrote. " I'm sorry I messed up". I completely expected him to own up his miscalculation and say, hey you know what - here we go, everything rolled back. We want YOU- our loyal customers back! " Instead came the highly hasty, ridiculous, God- knows- what- these- guys- are smoking announcement of the birth of Quikster. I thought that was his new rabbit till he pulled it out of his hat!!!. QUIKSTER!! Hastings has either lost touch with reality or his team has completely decided they want to run the company down! It is perhaps one of the most ridiculous business decisions that I have seen been taken in my lifetime. Why could they not have taken some more time to think a bit more out of the box. A little more thought. I mean, it doesn't take a genius to realize that the company bases its net worth on its subscriber base. And hell, the subscriber base is furious!
If I were in Hastings shoes( not that I want to be, especially when it comes with that thought process he has demonstrated); I would make the services cost my subscribers less. Infact, I would even go lower for the more loyal customers based on their transactions. I would then add new services ( like games, which he has made FREE!!) for an incremental cost; create more services like movie shows for families, friends across locations streamed onto their screens with an online social environment for them to discuss and critique them. I would bring more new releases into this environment, creating a new ( alternative) distribution platform for new movies to be screened at a premier fee.
There is so much innovation that can be done on the platform that Netflix already has; why would they kill their own subscriber base by these petty tactics? Beats me!!

Software, Services and Servers?

I see the propriety of appointing Meg Whitman as the CEO of HP. She understands applications and she knows how to work the web. The question is - Will PSG survive Meg? At a time when the market is moving away from the traditional tenets of software, hardware and services; it will be interesting to see how Meg brings in methods to innovate in the space where all the action is happening- cloud services, business intelligence and mobility. 

With its focus on hardware over the period of time, HP seems to have missed the boat that most successful technology stories are happily riding on. And today, as the investors and shareholders wave the wake - up flag to HP board; it is going to a gargantuan task identifying what businesses will work for HP in the years to come that market will lap up. Focus on more trends of consumerism and a clear direction on the role that HP sees itself play in the technology ecosystem of the future may perhaps determine what stays and what not. However, what definitely should go; is the layers of confusion and hyper process orientation that has killed the flexibility that an organization needs to be agile and adaptable to changes in its environment. The reason why big companies stop evolving after they hyperprocess themselves. 

HP board botched Leo Apotheker's hiring and firing - Sep. 22, 2011

Apotheker's messy firing is a mirror of his messy hiring. HP came under fire last September for the surprising choice: Apotheker was ousted less than a year into his CEO gig at software giant SAP (SAP), which is struggling to hold its market share against onslaughts from Oracle (ORCL, Fortune 500) and IBM (IBM, Fortune 500). Apotheker had no experience in hardware, the business that drives most of HP's revenue.

Can You Learn Willpower? | BNET

Can You Learn Willpower? | BNET: "Most productive people do their best work early in the day. To be sure, some people are naturally “night persons” or have their best energy late in the day, and so it’s necessary to work with that. Plus, some of your energy is replenished by food, so you may make better decisions after lunch than before. But in general, yes, there is a slow deterioration in willpower across the day, if you keep using it for various tasks and challenges. (If you spend the morning getting a massage or lying on the beach, you will still have plenty of willpower in the afternoon.)"

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Smart Move @SalesForce

Acquiring Assistly is a very opportune move by Salesforce. 50 Million cash well spent. What else could a CRM platform benefit from but a hosted customer service software framework. A great exit for its investors in just 2 years! So now Salesforce customers can set up their own customers service platform for servicing its clients in minutes when they get started on the sales force licenses. A perfect extension to a CRM!

Richard Dawkins, an Original Thinker Who Bashes Orthodoxy - NYTimes.com

Richard Dawkins, an Original Thinker Who Bashes Orthodoxy - NYTimes.com: "It’s very important to understand that these Gods came into being by an explicable scientific progression of incremental evolution"

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SAP acquires B2B networking hub Crossgate - IT News from V3.co.uk

SAP acquires B2B networking hub Crossgate - IT News from V3.co.uk: "Crossgate is described as a business social network, but differs from the likes of Chatter, Jive and Yammer as it focuses on data sharing between internal business users and their external partners."

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Study: Facebook ‘App Economy’ Adds Over 200K Jobs, Contributes More Than $15B To The U.S. Economy | TechCrunch

Study: Facebook ‘App Economy’ Adds Over 200K Jobs, Contributes More Than $15B To The U.S. Economy | TechCrunch: "Facebook is creating a thriving economy around its social network. According to new research from University of Maryland, the Facebook App Economy has added at least 182,000 new jobs and contributed more than $12.19 billion in wages and benefits to the U.S. economy this year. Using more aggressive estimates, the Facebook App Economy created a total of 235,644 jobs, adding a value of $15.71 billion to the U.S. economy in 2011."

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Lawyers still in the money - San Francisco Business Times

Sales of surveyed law firms increased 4.5 percent, while net income climbed 2.5 percent, according to a report by Wells Fargo Wealth Management’s Legal Specialty Group. Profits per partner during the first six months of 2011 rose 3 percent, the survey found.

Status: Dead

In the last 30 days, I have posted condolences on facebook walls of two young people, who died suddenly, under circumstances, which defy logic. Just how flimsy is our existence on the surface but ironically how deeply epitaphed are we in the cyber realism . How deep run the bonds of a networked world. You could be talking to a dead person, telling them how much you miss them, sharing their space, even after their death.

Shehla, the bubbly activist from Bhopal. You were a fiery girl, who led activism on issues that mattered. We became friends on facebook in March 2010. You helped me in my maiden activism cause, the fight for abolition of the Permanent Residents Bill. We spoke about issues and exchanged ideas. Over more than a year, we exchanged notes, pleasantries, birthday, eid, diwali wishes. You was there. A part my friends list. A part of my daily news feed and causes appeals. A part of my likes on the statuses. A part of my comments threads. You loss is more than a connection cut off. Everyday, the obituaries flowing into your page make my news feed. Your friends keep posting updates on your murder case on your page. As if Shehla, you were reading them, hoping that the people who shot you dead will be punished for what they did. You are alive in my life every day. Someone will keep telling you what happened to your killers.

Vikram, you didnt have to go the way that you did. I am baffled at the circumstances. I have missed calls from you on my skype and messages on my facebook on my birthday.  That mail on my phone in the middle of my working day, stopped time for me. I had never met you. Yet, I knew you well professionally. You were working with my team on our HR solution. We had several skype chats and calls. Today, I am sorry I missed all those calls from you. I wish I had taken them. I dont know how they would have helped you not dying. But I wish I could make every missed opportunity to be there for you possible. My office called you a day before you died. You said you were sick and will be replying to their emails as soon as you were able to. How did you pass away? You didnt plan it. Your investors told me you made the agenda for the shareholders meeting just the day before you fell from the bathroom window of your hospital room. Vikram, you were too young to go. The obituaries on your facebook page are a part of my news feed. People remember you as the humble, soft spoken guy who was an asset to know. People want to come forward and ensure your young wife and kids do not suffer. I also spoke to you. Through your facebook page. Telling you that I couldnt believe you were gone. Telling you I cant express my sorrow enough. As if you would log in and read it wherever it is that you went when you fell from that window.

One day, when I am no more, someone may be doing the same to me. Tagging me in their tweets, updating my facebook news feed with songs and poems, leaving comments on my blogs. Telling me of things that they could'nt say or do when I was alive. Death,as we know of it is so sudden that I would'nt have the time to log in and change my status to dead.

Plunging solar panel prices claim first victim: Solyndra files for bankruptcy | VentureBeat

Plunging solar panel prices claim first victim: Solyndra files for bankruptcy | VentureBeat: "The company makes cylindrical solar rooftop systems and is a now-controversial recipient of a $535 million loan guarantee from the Department of Energy — one of the first of its kind as part of the U.S. government’s federal stimulus program. After raising $1 billion, the company was forced to slash costs, close a factory and cancel an initial public offering as photovoltaic panel prices collapsed amid the economic recession that began in 2008."

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Angry Birds maker Rovio seeks $1.2B valuation in upcoming funding round | VentureBeat

Angry Birds is a popular game on mobile devices in which players fling birds at structures to try to destroy pigs. It started on smartphones like the iPhone and on tablets like the iPad. It has since expanded to a large number of other platforms like web browsers and TV boxes that are powered by operating systems like Android.

The company finished raising its last round of money — $42 million – in March this year. Rovio has been expanding through 2010 and 2011 and currently has 50 employees in Finland.Angry Birds maker Rovio seeks $1.2B valuation in upcoming funding round | VentureBeat:

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Circle of reality - 05 Sep 2011 - CRN UK Feature

Circle of reality - 05 Sep 2011 - CRN UK Feature: "The just-released Gartner Hype Cycle for Emerging Technologies has suggested that the excitement over cloud computing may have passed its peak, with the market appearing to be on the edge of becoming disillusioned with the technology.
This year’s Hype Cycle for Emerging Technologies divides cloud into several phenomena, all placed at different points in the cycle. Cloud computing is flagged as being transformational overall, with the cloud/web platform and private cloud segments both promising “high benefit” to businesses within two to five years.

This contrasts with phenomena such as consumerisation, biometrics and speech recognition, for example, which, to use Gartner’s terms, have climbed out of the “trough of disillusionment” and are moving up the “slope of enlightenment” to reach what it calls the “plateau of productivity” - where the reputation or hype around a technology is more in line, presumably, with reality.


According to Gartner, reaching the plateau of productivity means the real-world benefits of the technology have not only been accepted but the tools and methodologies have entered their second and third generations, becoming increasingly stable and less inherently risky. Increasing numbers of organisations not only adopt the technology, but feel comfortable with it. Gartner says obtaining 20 per cent market share is a likely indicator of a trend having reached this phase of mainstream adoption.


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You are my Friend

You are the reason for my strength. For when I was down and out, you punched me in my face with the reality of survival and sent me back to fight. For when I was silly and emotional, you wiped my tears and handed me a torch to go out and make my victory lap. For when I hid behind the wall, you pulled me out and handed me the gloves to close the fight. For times when you sat underneath that tree on a hot summer day worried when I was late for class. For all the meals shared. For all the coffees split. For all the times I slept while you read for my exams. For all the times, I messed up and you cleaned. For times when you told me accept defeat gracefully. And then pushed me to go back in. For times when you told me the way it was and then stood by me even when I was wrong. For the tears you shed for me, when no one else cared. For picking me up when I was down and out and making me go put up a fight. For every smile you made me smile. For every moment you placed me more important in your life than even yourself. For every shout of joy when I won a victory. For every strain of reason to give me hope. For every time you drove me to fight for myself and win. For teaching me to overcome all negativity. For being there for me. Though thick and thin. You are. The reason for my strength.

www.outlookindia.com | Information Martyr

An RTI activist who had taken up a variety of issues, from good governance, transparency and police reforms to tiger conservation, and who had been collecting evidence using the RTI Act since 2005, she had made several enemies among the powerful. She had received several threatening calls from bureaucrats, police officers and politicians. And she had faithfully kept the authorities apprised of the same, filing several petitions, including one to Union home minister P. Chidambaram, on how she feared for her life. They weren’t enough, however, to stop her enemies from getting to her.
I used to get irritated by the deluge of emails she would sent on protection of tigers in MP, another issue close to her heart. And today, all that is left of her is that facebook page with obituaries. Your killers will have to pay for what they did.


www.outlookindia.com | Information Martyr:

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Lessons from Kashmir

Being a fiercely proud kashmiri, I have in my moments of passion for my place of birth, been so emotional that I have evaded objectivity.At times, when I look back and assess those throes of inexplicable passion, I see a whirlpool of identity based swirls of emotion, which has been challenged, reinforced and re-instituted over the period of the past 20 years into a definitive character that has become me.
In our times of a flat world, seamless economies and open geographies, reinforcement of identity by people like us, is perhaps a complex twist to the entire paradigm of being us.
Its been a peaceful, beautiful summer here. Away from the bustling economies of the world, lies this sleepy willow, which may become the contender of the hot political moot point of south asian politics and by virtue of that honor; the economy. And yet, there is the absolute sense of prejudice towards inclusiveness towards the rest of the world that haunts the psyche of the people - almost to the extent of creating an isolation in existence.
Between the balance needed to integrate our worlds; the most important aspect is that of identity. It is the same conflict that arises when employees join organizations and have to align themselves to the culture of the new organization, while carrying the baggage of the old. The attempt in their top most level of consciousness is  that of change, yet the metrics of change management at times fails to work in the realistic sense when the attempt to adjust becomes a task of a gargantuan proportion and sometimes a factor hindering continuation of effort.
Welcoming and adapting to change in our lives, sometimes, if not an adjustment seen favorable, may end up being a hindrance in our growth and evolution. Nothing is permanent. In its transience , time only tells us that change is pertinent and so you will change and you will evolve. Its what you do with this evolution what determines the quality of your life. I made an attempt to visit a dilapidated temple this last week.

Is this the start of an education for an atheist or just a deeper journey into agnosticism? I dont know. For now, Im accepting all thats coming my way without questioning it. Maybe thats the start of acceptance of transience. Its a beautiful sunny day.

With National Database, India Tries to Reach the Poor - NYTimes.com

India’s identity database will be an order of magnitude larger than the world’s largest existing biometric database, the US-Visit program for visas, which has data on about 100 million people. To register all 1.2 billion Indians, the system will need to collect 12 billion fingerprints and scan 2.4 billion irises. It is a project of epic proportions — not unlike the challenge of governing the world’s largest democracy.

Kashmir


Kashmir shrinks into my mailbox,
my home a neat four by six inches.
I always loved neatness. Now I hold
the half-inch Himalayas in my hand.
This is home. And this the closest
I'll ever be to home. When I return,
the colors won't be so brilliant,
the Jhelum's waters so clean,
so ultramarine. My love
so overexposed.
And my memory will be a little
out of focus, it in
a giant negative, black
and white, still undeveloped.
-Aga Shahid Ali

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