Follow me on Digg

Keep track of what I'm reading via Digg.


posted by Lee Gale @ 2:31 AM, ,

Don't forget to follow me on Digg

Keep track of what I'm reading via Digg.


posted by Lee Gale @ 1:27 AM, ,

Follow me on Digg

Keep track of what I'm reading via Digg.


posted by Lee Gale @ 1:02 AM, ,

Blog status update

About a month ago, I blogged it was Time for a blog review.

Fast forward to now, and I've worked on the labels for stories to provide more granularity and streamlined some of the menus.

I've still got to get the labels more accessible to everyone... Drew's helping me do that with a label sidebar but I've yet to install it. :-)

I joined Digg in an effort to better share & comment on good articles I'd been reading. They previously had a connection from your profile to your blog so you could publish from Digg to your blog. After two failed attempts to connect to my blog and two support cases logged with Digg, this option seems to have disappeared.

So, it's back to the drawing board on how to share this content with you :-(

Image by Svilen Mushkatov


posted by Lee Gale @ 2:04 AM, ,

Time for a blog review

Having six months of blogging under my belt, I feel it's time for a review on what I'm posting and what I won't be going forward.

First factor: making this a useful blog for more specific content.

I think in this regards, my original intention was to provide an outlet for my opinions & views regarding:
Second factor: posting frequency.

Up until recently I've had the luxury of not being employed, so now I need to rebalance how I spend my time.

So, over the next few days I'm going to:
  1. Sort out the navigation menus;
  2. Make it easier to see all the labels; and
  3. Find some simple ways to share articles (not books) that I think are worthwhile reading and other smaller pieces of information - probably Digg. If any readers have suggestions in this regards, I'd welcome them!

Image by Svilen Mushkatov


posted by Lee Gale @ 1:17 AM, ,

I've joined Open Text

The 1st of May was my first day in the employment of Open Text.

Open Text is the largest independent software company providing enterprise content management (ECM) software solutions, where I'll be helping grow the SAP solutions sales across Australia & New Zealand.

Why Open Text?
As Jack Welch says in Winning, an organisation that is winning energises everyone that is part of it and at present, Open Text is winning.

I believe there are some core reasons for this including:
  1. The ECM market generally is growing;
  2. They provide specific value that is sought during this current recession cycle;
  3. The products are class leading; and
  4. The company's culture.
Drilling down further to each of these points, to the point that timing is everything as reported in Global ECM market to hit $US10.45B by 2015, "the Global content management software market is projected to cross $US10.4 billion by 2015, with Asia-Pacific representing the fastest growing market, according to a new report from Global Industry Analysts, Inc., (GIA)". Such enterprise-content-management software has assumed a growing importance in recent years as companies use ECM software to adhere to tough new compliance laws, like the Sarbanes-Oxley Act.

Bucking the trend during the GFC as the the WSJ article Open Text 2Q Defies Odds; Is It Sustainable? highlights: "Many of the world's largest software companies are cutting forecasts, slashing jobs and restructuring operations as the global recession crimps sales, but Open Text Corp. soldiers on." I attribute this to them providing software that helps companies improve cash flow and operational efficiencies - what COO or CFO wouldn't welcome a sales call from a software company who could help them do that?

To the point of class-leading products, the simplest evidence of this is the Gartner Magic Quadrant for Enterprise Content Management (source: Gartner, September 2008). You can read the report at the link provided to better understand the quadrant, but simplistically, the higher and further to the right an organisation is in the chart, the better the ranking.

Finally, looking at the company's culture - in particular the APJ team - as I've discussed in
Who Says Elephants Can't Dance?, it's super-critical for the team to be cohesive in order to execute flawlessly. In my first days spent with the team I can honestly say that I have respect for all of them and the skills, experience and passion they bring to the business.

Aside from why the company is winning, another key factor for me personally was to be part of the key business at an organisation. I've found most organisations will leverage the Pareto principle in their investments - they'll focus on the 20% that generates the 80% of returns. Unlike my time with Adobe, the enterprise software market is where Open Text focus and the the line of business I'll be part of is a more significant % of their business than what I was driving at Adobe.

How did I get here?
I took the advice of Meiron Lees (whom I last spoke about in Optimism & Staying focused), specifically: putting my energy into the outcome I wanted in order to avoid distractions. Early on in my job search, the hiring managers at Open Text outlined the great opportunity I've written about above and I decided this is the organisation I wanted to focus my efforts on.

Yes of course I looked at other options, but how else would I have satisfied myself this was the right choice?

In addition to the team at Open Text's case, I believed they had needs that my skills best served. The article Tip for job hunters: build your network and research who you are meeting makes this case pretty clearly: "Don't look for a job - search for a need."

The other point this article highlights is that it was from my existing network that my conversations started with Open Text - I've known the managers there for years, in one case for over 6 years. The difference in the interview process this knowledge makes is quite valuable. Their knowledge of my skills and accomplishments helped my case and my knowledge of their style and needs helped me determine I could be successful there.

PS - just as we did when I left Adobe, we celebrated this occasion by cracking open a bottle of Bollinger's 1997 La Grande Annee - the bottle Adobe gave me in fact !

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posted by Lee Gale @ 6:05 PM, ,

May you live in interesting times

Or so goes the ancient Chinese curse/proverb.

Well, it certainly wouldn't be a normal day for the tech industry without one company starting up, hiring, laying people off, going bust or merging with another.

Sun Microsystem's never really recovered after the 2001 tech wreck (check out the 10 year chart on Google Finance for illustration) so the GFC probably didn't have any executives there jumping for joy. In fact, checking out the 2008 cash position being down US$1.3b would have me jumping out a window if I was working there.

Having worked in the Sun ecosystem in Australia/New Zealand from 2000 to 2003, I can suggest a core issue was their transition from selling big servers to a more diverse portfolio of solutions (smaller servers, storage, software, services, etc). They just didn't seem to make that shift quickly enough - at least over here - which in turn put them behind the eight-ball for the coming software acquisition spree the company embarked upon.

So reading the news that Oracle is the winning suitor to acquire Sun (see MIS Australia, CNN, Bloomberg, more Bloomberg ) was interesting to say the least. This comes after IBM failed to agree on terms for an acquisition. Also noteworthy is the actual cost of the acquisition - it's a little less than the reported US$7.4bn, in fact it's around US$5.6bn once you factor in Sun’s cash and debt.

The positive aspect include a Oracle/Sun entity providing a more complete alternative 'stack' to IBM, HP and possibly soon-to-be Cisco. It also provides Oracle with some great software assets such as Java and mySQL. Strategically for Oracle, having IBM own these would not have been a great outcome (whereas Sun's ownership and inability to effectively leverage those assets was less of an issue).

Looking at the negative aspects, I'd imagine Oracle shareholders might be less than thrilled about being in the lower margin hardware game. One possible outcome here is that Oracle annexes that business to someone like Cisco, IBM, HP or Fujitsu. Having said that, most commentary indicates Oracle will keep the hardware.

I'd also imagine this deal will further dilute Sun's partnerships with other software vendors such as SAP who compete with Oracle on one or more fronts. It would equally dilute Oracle's partnerships with firms such as Dell. Realistically, knowing how dysfunctional these partnerships actually can be potentially negates this point.

Interestingly, about 14 hours after I wrote the blog content above, the article Top five predictions from the Oracle-Sun merger pretty much backs my points on hardware & alliances. If there anyone out there that doesn't think staff cuts are going to occur, please re-read my second paragraph of this blog again.


posted by Lee Gale @ 12:07 AM, ,

Does anybody gives a damn about global warming?

With the GFC dominating news of the day and the burden it has placed on everyones daily existence, has global warming been put into a box in the corner of everyones minds?

According to the article News flash: Nobody gives a damn about global warming on VentureBeat, the answer is: yes.

As I wrote about in Shell Global Scenarios to 2025, it would be a real shame for us to drop the ball on this as most research indicates that simply stopping extra emissions (i.e. staying put with our emissions right now) won't be enough to reverse the effects of global warming... but will put us on track to avoid a catastrophic ending to our existence here on Earth.

Yes, I'm aware that balancing short-term issues (like the GFC) with long-term goals (like reducing our influence on the Earth's normal climate fluctuations) is a tough gig. As Jack Welch said in his book Winning: "Anyone can manage short-term: just keep squeezing the lemon. And anyone can manage long-term: just keep dreaming. Real leaders able people who are able to squeeze & dream at the same time".

Let's hope the current leaders - people like Kevin Rudd, Gordon Brown and Barack Obama - can do this rather than get caught up playing politics as usual.

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posted by Lee Gale @ 9:32 AM, ,

Today's moon shot

In my catch-up with some FastCompany articles, I was please to read that the latest US budget sees an increase in funding for NASA.

I think our generation needs new 'moon shot' to spur forward scientific and technical achievements. It's also worth noting that such a program isn't just for the US - every nation can play a part just as many did with the International Space Station.

Sadly, the punctuation point to that feeling was reading that March 2nd marked Concorde's 40th anniversary. Concorde's final flight brought out Jeremy Clarkson's poignant side: "This is one small step for man, but one giant leap backwards for mankind."

Image by Frederic Carmel


posted by Lee Gale @ 1:04 AM, ,

Happy Mardi Gras !

Nations United is the theme for Sydney's Mardi Gras 2009. For the 5th year running we hosted our friends to watch the parade from our apartment.


posted by Lee Gale @ 6:37 PM, ,

Continental Test Flight Uses Algae as Fuel

I read the article Continental Test Flight Uses Algae as Fuel by Saabira Chaudhuri for FastCompany with quite a great deal of interest.

In a nut-shell, what happened was "In a 90-minute test flight, a Continental Boeing 737-800 used a 50-50 blend of biofuel (algae mixed with jatropha, a weed that bears oil-producing seeds) and normal fuel to power its number two engine."

As the article goes on to note, there are a few things of particular interest:
How cool is that !!!!

I guess what would be interesting to learn is: how much energy/cost is required to convert Algae into biofuel? HowStuffWorks has a good article on the process, but the costs are not quantified.

What is quiet interesting is how much investment has gone into this sector recently: US$179.9m this year (I assume US calendar year?) according to this article by GreenTechMedia. What is also interesting from this article is that the company doing significant investing, Cascades Investments, has Bill Gates as a major shareholder.

Do you still have any doubts that the next wave of innovation and growth is coming from biotech?

Hopefully we are going to read more on this throughout 2009 !


posted by Lee Gale @ 1:26 AM, ,

What Carriers Aren’t Eager to Tell You About Texting

A wholly depressing, but hardly surprising article on mobile carriers gouging consumers on texting by the New York Times.

So this might just pass by without any change... unless someone were to organise a consumer revolt. Will that be me? Not today. Will that be you? Hopefully.

Image by Stuart Goldenberg


posted by Lee Gale @ 11:23 AM, ,

Happy New Year !

Happy New Year... I hope you had (are having) as much fun as we plan to!


posted by Lee Gale @ 1:35 PM, ,

Merry Christmas!

For those of you that celebrate Christmas: have a very Merry Christmas. For those of you that celebrate the holidays: Happy Holidays.

We'll be celebrating ours with the traditional lunch with our immediate family.


posted by Lee Gale @ 3:43 PM, ,

Hidden costs of Social Network Profiles ?

In the last few weeks, I've been reading quite a few articles on how Facebook and related sites has been impacting peoples lives negatively.

Before continuing, I should clarify that the people in question (allegedly) behaved poorly and social networking sites have helped increase/accelerate the impact.

Take for instance the case of the woman whose profile cost her a college degree. ReadWriteWeb has a pretty good analysis of the situation so I'll leave it at that.

Then take the case where Australian law firm Meyer Vandenberg convinced the Australian Capital Territory's Supreme Court to allow service of court documents on An Australian couple who defaulted on their mortgage via the couple's Facebook page. Read about it here, here and here. I love the quote that "Facebook has become less fun since it has been discovered by lawyers and bankers," from internet law expert Dr Matthew Rimmer.

But my all time favourite is Kyle Doyle's sickie that was kiboshed by a smart HR manager. Classic.

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posted by Lee Gale @ 9:12 PM, ,

The Titanic’s Last Secret

If you've a passing interest in the Titanic and all the mystic that surrounds it, I'd recommend reading this Newsweek article from October 20th, 2008:


posted by Lee Gale @ 3:56 PM, ,

Gladwell on the War on Drugs in sport

I'd recommend the quick read of these two articles by Malcolm Gladwell:

Malcolm always takes an interesting position on issues that I find appealing.

I love the closing remark: "I realize that the people running major league baseball and the NFL are not philosophers. But the intellectual sloppiness with which this current crusade has been conducted is appalling."

If you haven't checked out his books, Tipping Point and Blink, I'd encourage you to do so.


posted by Lee Gale @ 1:13 PM, ,

'Jet Man' Soars Across English Channel

Yves Rossy leaped from a plane and into the record books on Friday, crossing the channel on a homemade jet-propelled wing.

Rossy crossed the Channel in 13 minutes, averaging 125 miles per hour.

How cool is that!

PS - Web 2.0 to Discovery Channel: you'll get more site traffic if you allow people to embed your video into their blog.


posted by Lee Gale @ 4:56 AM, ,

First A380 delivery to Qantas

Last Sunday, Qantas took delivery of it's first A380.

Check it out online, here:
and here:

We managed to see her doing fly-overs of Sydney harbour from our balcony. It was both simultaneously exciting and mundane. I guess at the end of the day, she's just a big aircraft and not nearly as exciting as the "Jumbo Jet" was... and still is. As Jeremy noted in his book, The 747 is a unit of measurement in most people's vocabulary: "the size of a Jumbo Jet".

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posted by Lee Gale @ 9:07 PM, ,