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Showing posts from May, 2009

The First Austrian Cloud Computing Company - Netmonic - A Review

Netmonic is the first ever indigenous Austrian cloud computing company. I decided to give them a spin, since I'm in need of dedicating an FTP server for our projects being done in India.

Technically it's all been working good so far. No untoward failures (unlike my first days with serverpronto), the server has been up since I signed up online. Here's my review as I continue to use the server.

Sign Up & Payments

Signup was straight forward at netmonic.com - registration form. I automatically got a virtual server assigned with user/pass sent over by email. Our company did have a special requirement of payment by bank-transfer, since we don't use company CC', so a quick round of emails had to be exchanged with the support@ address listed on their site. The original account I setup had to be overwritten, and they provided new login details, within a few hours the same working day.

Netmonic currently supports their Registration workflow only with Credit Cards, whi…

fixmbr - Repair Windows XP Master Boot Record

I happened to hose my MBR which pointed to a GRUB (boot loader for Linux) while uninstalling all Linux OS-es from a Laptop. In the process, the Windows boot records also got deleted, and the machine lay sans a valid boot-loader. Eventually the only OS that I was interested in having on this laptop was Win-XP.

To install a fresh new Win-XP (actually Win NT) boot-loader
B from the Win-XP installation Enter the "Repair" mode and find your way to the DOS promptType in the fixmbr command, and let it replace the MBR completelyExit and reboot

Firefox Plug-in for KeepInTouch KIT

I'd love to have an FF plug-in that will allow adding email addresses of contacts, say when reading email, organizing CRM records or social-networking, to KeepInTouch (Google Code site).

It should be possible to
select an accountselect a mailing listadd f_name, l_name and email addressby selecting a string an right-clicking on FF pages.

Some Resources
Eric Hamiter's Hello World! TutorialAdding search plugins (tons of resources linked on left-menu)XUL / MDC DocumentationFirefox Extension Development Tutorial

German phrases

This will help with my weakness in German conversation - small talk!

http://www.phrasen.com/uebersetze,Das-hoert-sich-gut-an,88302,d.html

(to the right, an unrelated "touching moment")

Of Collosal Political Errors - East German Industrial Development, Post Reunification

These days, I don't read the newspaper, never watch TV and just sometimes pop-in news websites for current affairs. But I do read the Time magazine fairly regularly. This week, the cover-story was how economy-managers worldwide could take cues to solve the current global recession from Germany's experience of managing the economic integration of the earlier Eastern and Western Germanies.Those of us who live in Germany know that there are still many unresolved problems in the East such as out of proportion unemployment, aging population (emigration of youth), industrial under-development etc. Time's 18 May, 2009 article mentioned one collosal error made at the time of planning and executing the German Reunification under Chancellor Kohl back in 1990 - that of exchanging the East and West German Marks at par, one of one for each, while the real value of the Eastern Deutsche Mark (DM) was only a fourth of it's western counterpart. This automatically over-valued east-Ge…

XAMPP Port 80 and (mischevous) Skype

Don't know why Skype has to block port:80, but it apparently does, which prevents XAMPP, or any other instance of Apache/2 to run. This snippet from ApacheFriends helped isolate the probem.(7) You have other software, such as the Internet Telephone "SKYPE" which also blocks the port 80. (thanks Peter! ) However, one can change the SKYPE port: Actions -- > Options --> Connection. Here remove the check mark at "Port 80" for an alternate port. Restart Skype and also it should work.

Zoho CRM

I'm enjoying Zoho CRM, as my staff moves tons of data into it right at the moment. Check this blog post..

What I like in Zoho CRM:works faster than sf.comhas a benign image, whereas sf.com has a monopolistic suck-em-for-more-profit predatory image (above episode included)has all CRM features I need3 free accounts and 12$ per month is generous. ThanksWhat I don't like:
Google Calendar is still the best for managing todo's. Can Zoho CRM make it easier/faster to manage tasks?seems to be a clone of all CRM SaaS deals out there. Innovation anyone? (for ex. I would appreciate a Firefox plugin alá twitterfox, which lets me add activities fast)I managed to import my Google Apps account contacts to Zoho Contacts, but not further down into CRM.Small quirks like, the Open Tasks list doesn't sort by date (descending), so I don't get my immediate to-dos at the top of the listStyling gets messed up in Google Chrome (not sure whose fault this is)They are competitive with Google, w…

Layer3 Model for Indian IT SME's in Europe

This is the first article from the series I hope to finish for Indian IT SMEs' participation in the European, more specifically the German-speaking European market, mentioned earlier in my blog.

For years and still today Indian IT SME's have struggled to find opportunities for adding value in the European market. I have argued that this is principally because of the lack of ingenuity of business-models on the part of IT services companies from India. For far too long, they have focused on one and only one value-proposition, that of low-cost development resources. I believe it is now time to stop betting the farm on that one value-point, and start identifying under served opportunities, which the same strengths that have propelled Indian IT service companies into global fame, can serve.
The Layer3 Model which I'd like to propose here, segments the market into 3 horizontally laid out layers for visualization purposes. At the left end is Layer-1 where an Indian IT SME fits.…