2010 in review

WP is amazing bringing the year in review. How good would it be if we had stats for all the social media services that we consume: Facebook, Gmail, all. That would be a pretty neat business idea to pursue, isnt it? Summary services.

The stats helper monkeys at WordPress.com mulled over how this blog did in 2010, and here’s a high level summary of its overall blog health:

Healthy blog!

The Blog-Health-o-Meterâ„¢ reads Fresher than ever.

Crunchy numbers

Featured image

A helper monkey made this abstract painting, inspired by your stats.

A Boeing 747-400 passenger jet can hold 416 passengers. This blog was viewed about 4,300 times in 2010. That’s about 10 full 747s.

 

In 2010, there were 2 new posts, growing the total archive of this blog to 377 posts.

The busiest day of the year was September 30th with 59 views. The most popular post that day was The Skipper – episodic short story.

Where did they come from?

The top referring sites in 2010 were google.co.in, search.conduit.com, linkedin.com, mindwarrior.blogspot.com, and in.linkedin.com.

Some visitors came searching, mostly for waqt aane de bata denge, bingo ads, bingo advertisement, rang de basanti meaning, and valentine wallpaper.

Attractions in 2010

These are the posts and pages that got the most views in 2010.

1

The Skipper – episodic short story February 2007
7 comments

2

bingo – best ads April 2007
18 comments

3

Sarfaroshi Ki Tamanna August 2006
51 comments

4

Rang De Basanti : Par Excellence January 2006
24 comments

5

Valentine Wallpaper/Collage. February 2006
2 comments

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Back to full-time employment

I’ve been an entrepreneur for two years now and it’s been a really great deal of fun and excitement. Not to forget the tears. For me, being an entrepreneur meant having the freedom to pursue my dreams – to be able to have a career on my own terms, unleashing my creativity, meet interesting people, learn a lot lot more than a normal job would ever allow me to and being able to work with some really fantastic folks. Technically it has been a ride – learning PHP, Flex, Erlang, Rails, Python, Ruby, JSF, Irrlicht, C#, Javascript and couple more – and then working on such systems as Garment Simulation, designing websites, ERP, couple of interesting products, and many more prototypes. Meeting potential investors, clients, negotiations, and then looking almost everything from the big picture mode – it was fabulous.

As all good things come to an end, so did this. Of course it was only going to be a very special opportunity that a spoilt bloke like me would take up. I believe I found that opportunity in Cozy Games and after a month of working there I do really believe it is so. I’ve joined fulltime as solutions architect on their development team collaborating on their some of their ambitious projects. This is in an area I know very less of, but never the less have been interested in for a very long time.

The last few weeks have been a great rush and have had a particularly good ride. And really looking forward to have more times like these. Looking forward to talk in future about things we’ve been working on in the next few weeks.

Thank you one and all who had been a part of the interesting journey of the last two years. We shall have many more – that I promise.

Value System, Vision & Leaders

The question for leaders is how we can create a system to attract the
best people, because the main fight of the 21st century is not about
assets. The main struggle in the 19th century was about the land. In
the 20th century, it was about industrial assets and natural
resources. In 21st century, the main fight will be for the best people.
Because people need to believe they want to work for you, that they can
realize themselves in your company. To attract them, we need to have
the right system in place and develop them for the long term. Many
companies are not ready to do this because they hire people, but they
don’t spend enough time or effort in developing them. I think leaders
need to be very, very committed to these types of things.

Ruben Vardanian, Russia’s Best-Know Investment Banker on Trust, Companies, Vision and Leaders. Go Read the whole article on the K@W website for a whole lot of better info than the one quoted above.

Two years in a business role, this makes perfect sense. Every business is people business.

HowTos and WhyTos of Friendster.

An excerpt from the article “How to Kill a Great Idea“. Experiences as these are what makes the VCs the sharks.

Abrams is not the only one who feels this way. “The basic venture
capital system is structured so that there are built-in conflicts of
interest between the VC and the entrepreneur,” says Joel Spolsky,
founder of Fog Creek, a New York City software company, and writer of
the popular blog Joel on Software. It’s a point that even some
investors are willing to concede. “Most VC firms have adopted a model
where they make 20 investments and have two hits,” says Peter Rip, a
partner with San Francisco-based Crosslink Capital, which has backed
such companies as Good Technology and TiVo (NASDAQ:TIVO). The
traditional VC model works fine for investors, since the returns from
one Google (NASDAQ:GOOG) far outweigh the losses from nine Friendsters.
It’s fine for the VCs themselves, who reap healthy management fees
regardless of the outcome. And it’s fine for the network of
professional managers who bounce from start-up to start-up, earning
well wherever they go.

But it isn’t much good for an entrepreneur who has a promising
idea–and who would prefer odds that are better than 20 to 2. Spolsky
believes that working with a VC imposes a level of risk that someone
prepared to invest his life–not to mention his life savings–in a
single enterprise simply should not tolerate. “An entrepreneur would
rather have a 100 percent chance of owning an $80 million company than
a 10 percent chance of having a $800 million one,” he says.

get a headstart!

head-start-logo.gif

Introducing HeadStart, a technology, innovation and product showcase for startups as well as biggies who have something to show off that meets the above conditions. Led by a passion bunch of folks who are behind the wildly successful BarcampBangalore as well the MoMos, Headstart promises to be a very promising affair.

What can you expect from HeadStart.in?

  1. Technology Buyers aka Customers
  2. Workshops
  3. Panel discussions

As an entrepreneur, my sole concentration would be on (1) and would be hoping to build:

  1. Something tangible that will contribute to my immediate need of kharcha pani – customers & investors. It wont do any harm to get some customers – your valuations will definitely get a boost just on account of that. Of course a first hand opportunity to get a feedback on your product is not a bad thing too.
  2. Long term and strategically – to build a varied and interesting network – of co-entrepreneurs, technology sellers and buyers and of course investors.

Headstart is concentrating on, where the companies get their next meal from – the customers, which is a great focus to have. Of course, VCs too will be there to grant a closed door meeting if your idea has much dough. With stalls for startups, it will be an interesting event, quite different in scale.

And of course with no charge [free as in free beer] for companies for demoing it will be an interesting watch to see the sort of startups wanting to demo there. Just because of this low barrier of entry, I guess the initial shortlisting of companies is going to be a nightmare – Proto had taken care of this by having a moderate fee for demoing startups and which would only get serious companies to come forward to demo.

The post follow-up [PRwise, etc] with the showcasing companies if done as well as promised is definitely going to make a notable difference to the life of the startups.

Its an ambitious plan definitely but considering the amount of sweat being put in, hopefully we will have a very well organized event. Its quite nice to see the amount of effort being put in to provide a pedestal for promising startups in India.

The question is: do we have enough interesting technology product startups?

Also of interest is to see how it fares compared to Proto.in in terms of % startups getting funded, prospects improved drastically. Definitely something to watch out for.

K@W rocks!

Two new articles(both reviews on books) caught my attention in K@W this week. One a book about the myth of Self-Helpish Books and the other on Cash-Curve. Loved the tone of each of them:

The Halo Effect

Halo effect is an effort at debunking the myth of having the guidelines for a great performance/manager. Instead it simply focuses on “Why is it so hard to understand high performance?”. It tackles many delusions:

  • The delusion of correlation and causality
  • The delusion of single explanations
  • The delusion of rigorous research

Havent we heard all this before. The repeated (failed) attempts of GUT. Or trying to arrive at a one size fits all solution. Or the one simple mantra that is the secret of success of a company. The review of the book looks compelling – have to get a reading of the book..

  1. Good strategies involve risk and no strategy is foolproof.
  2. Execution also is uncertain. What works well for one company may not be effective for another company.
  3. Chance plays a greater role in success than managers may want to admit.
  4. Bad outcomes don’t always mean that managers made mistakes. Likewise, favorable outcomes don’t necessarily mean that the managers made brilliant decisions.
  5. Finally, Rosenzweig says that “when the die is cast, the best managers act as if chance is irrelevant. Persistence and tenacity are everything.”

Sort of reinforces my thought, market validates all. Forget the media and get back to work.

Watch the Cash Curve

The cash curve is based on four “S factors”: Startup costs, or the pre-launch investment; Speed, or the time it takes to get the product to market; Scale, or the time it takes for the product to build a critical volume of customers; and Support costs, or the investment that is needed to keep a new product or service up and running after it has been launched. The cash curve plots cash flow over time as the product goes through successive phases of idea generation, commercialization and realization.

Amazing clarity there on the product. Of course the Apple takes the cake here. But just be careful its not the Halo Effect showing its effect 😀