Small Business or Startup?

iStock girl thinking Large 150x150 Small Business or Startup? photo    random thoughts blogroll  united kingdom twitter startup start small business silicon valley managing director London institute of directors facebook England CTO CEO california business 3b software ltd I had an interesting discussion recently with a friend of mine about titles and terminology used nowadays in business, and it prompted me to continue my trail of thoughts on this on my blog. We talked about how a lot of companies label themselves rather proudly as startups — an idea which my friend was not too fond of.

Twitter, as we all know, is still sort of looked upon as a startup — even though they just IPO’d … well, under a year ago. Facebook, also, even though everyone knew the goal was for an exit of 100 billion, was proudly waving the flag of being a startup, my friend reminded me.

Pretty much, any company that operates in between I-280 and US-101 nowadays will label itself as a startup — I was told. And these startups give birth to a whole plethora of titles, such as CEO, CTO, CMO, CxO — my friend argued. But the reality is, they just create fancy titles and hiding under the title of “startup” allows them not to create a viable business — because, after all, they are still starting up, right? They don’t have to bring in revenue or have a solid business plan… At least that was my friend’s argument.

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Know Thy Audience

iStock 000016712919Small conference 150x150 Know Thy Audience photo    technology random thoughts blogroll  public speaking presentation dreamforce conference audience targeting audience insights audience I’ve been to a bunch of conferences, meetups and other technical (or not!) events recently and some of them have touched me enough to deserve some comments on my blog, as you might have noticed. Looking back now at the last 5-6 months or so and all the events I’ve been attending — and needless to say some of them were exceptionally organized, while some of them were terrible — it occurred to me that it matters a lot how you target your audience.

When you deliver at such an event, you need to really know the audience when you take on the stage. I know it’s such a common advice you read everywhere on the net, but still, despite all that I see this mistake being made a lot.

I’m going to tell you about one of these events where the presenter really didn’t strike one chord with the audience, just so you can see how important this factor can be.

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DreamForce 2014 — 15-Oct-2014 In Photos

Dreamforce 2014 — Day 1 in Photos

Using OS-level Signals in Java for Monitoring

DukeTubbingSmall 150x150 Using OS level Signals in Java for Monitoring photo    technology blogroll  zabbix signals OS Oracle operating system open jdk nagios monitoring mbean MacOS mac os x Mac linux jvm JMX JDK java8 Java dynamic mbean For those of you familiar to monitoring Java applications, I’m sure the first thing that springs to mind is JMX. And I agree, that is a nice framework to provide various app insights for tracking and monitoring. The trouble with JMX though, if you haven’t got a system in place already to collect this data (like Zabbix or Nagios or the likes), it can be a tedious process to get that up and running only to collect occasionally some simple stats from your application.

Of course, you can go via the route of writing some Java or Groovy code to connect to your app and query it via JMX but you still have to spend some extra time (having written the app) to write the JMX client to query it. Which, I personally find at time annoying — I’d much rather dump the data into a log file and keep tail-ing and grep-ing that file for checking the data. For anyone who has been involved in devops I’m sure you’ll agree that’s a much easier and convenient approach. The trouble with doing that is if you regularly pump out the data into a log files, these things keep growing — and then you have to regularly clean them up, rotate, etc.

Instead, I would prefer a solution where at regular intervals I can query the data (preferably no log writing needed) and act on it — e.g. spawn another process or kill a process and so on. As I said, this can be done with JMX but I find it cumbersome — instead, would be good if the process itself only “logs” data when requested — and in doing so uses the stdout so I don’t have to worry much about cleaning up logs.

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Nice Feature from Evernote — Custom Colors

evernote logo 4c sm Nice Feature from Evernote    Custom Colors photo    technology news blogroll  user interface todo task management task project management list feature evernote I use Evernote a lot — I am a big fan of the tool for day-to-day use as well as of their platform and the services they open to the developers community. (For those techies reading this check out my previous post about storing lists using Evernote by the way. Not that I’m bragging :D)

I thought until recently that I used most of their app functionality — but only found today that there was at least one bit I didn’t know of — and I want to share that with you.

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Out with the Old, In with the New

Wild 94.9 Comedy Jam — Oct/2014

Embrace the Change

iStock hero light sillhouette anonymous 150x150 Embrace the Change photo    news blogroll  Tech new job magnetic linus group CTO cognitive match chief technical officer career development career change career I’m starting a new job tomorrow. Finally, it came to that time to leave behind Cognitive Match / Magnetic and take on a new challenge.

This change and the implications it has on various levels in my life got me thinking. There are a lot of unknowns ahead of me and a lot of challenges to tackle and problems to solve as with every job. As such, I’m a little nervous.

Even more so as I’m joining a prestigious media company, well known in the scientific circles around here: from tomorrow, I’m joining The Linus Group as their Chief Technology Officer. It’s a natural progression I think, I’ve worked before in positions where I influenced or defined companies or product technologies and roadmaps so it was time to slide into a position finally where I do this across a whole portfolio of products and projects.

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Find in Array — Java 8 Style

ExplodingCup6small 150x150 Find in Array    Java 8 Style photo    technology news blogroll  performance parallel processing parallel arrays lambda expressions jdk8 JDK java streams java 8 Java functional programming code speed code complexity array traversal Java 8 has added support for parallel processing arrays — as I’m sure most of you know. There are lots of official release documents from Oracle talking about how employing these parallel methods and classes improves speed of your application — and as to be expected, there are lots of bloggers who set off to write sample code around it and analyze the performance.

I am still relatively new to Java 8, I’ll confess, though I do like the new fork/join paradigm Java 8 introduced and the support for parallelism in this version. One thing I’ve been looking at more closely is streams — which allows one to easily start dwelling into parallel processing.

The idea is relatively simple, you create a Stream instance for your “data” (be it an array, collection, I/O stream etc) and then this can be broken down into smaller chunks under the cover and processed.

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