Sir Edmund Hillary – A NZ Hero

A Change of topic, to make mention of the passing of Sir Edmund Hillary, probably the most famous New Zealander in history, especially internationally.

The amount of coverage on CNN, BBC and other new agencies showed how well he and his most famous achievement were know.

88 is a good age to reach, and ironic that a man so famous for his daring and adventurous to reach 88 and die of age related cause.

Farewell Sir Ed, You will be well remembered

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Web 2.0, whats your feel on it?

Web 2.0 is the latest in a line of names for the current lineup of Web Applications. Blogs and other visitor driven sites are popping up all over the place.

Things like Myspace, Flickr and Wikipedia are all changing the way that information is generated and consumed on the net.

For more information of this topic, you can read an excellent article from Tim O’Reilly here

While long at 5 pages, it gives a really good description and most usefully, gives an understanding of the differences between Web 1.0 and Web 2.0.

We have been providing Blogs to our clients, but these new ways of presenting content are exciting.

What Web2.0 apps are you looking at?

Till next time


Some new cool Tools

Skype has introduced Video calling since version 2.0 and it works great. For a distributed business it could save heaps of money and with call forwarding (for a per minute cost) it is starting to answer most questions put before it.

A couple of questions that need to be answered:

  • How is Telecom and other telco’s going to React?
  • How will phone spam and the other digital nasties be dealt with?

VOIP looks like a panacea, but these possible hitches need to be dealt with before it can be widely adopted.

Till next time


Broadband in NZ – the landscape is shifting

Well Telecom has had the sharp stick waved at them and impending regulation is being written to open up the copper network to its competitors.

Great news for customers? On the surface it looks like a good deal, however we need the other players in the market to step up and invest as they have been talking about to make the most of this situation.

We are on a 3.5mb plan which is good, but had to upgrade to a 512kbs upload plan to really get some benefit.

It was more noticable when we increased the upload speed than when we went from 2mb to 3.5mb

There is talk now of speeds of 24mb in the pipeline and established players in the market like Ihug, CallPlus and Woosh are going to be competing with newer entrants like Top Energy and other companys who are experimenting with wireless as well as wired networks.

So as to underline this shift, yesterday, Telecom announced they are planning to separate their wholesale and retail divisions. This will enable Telecom to focus on each separately to get the most out of them. In the post regulation era, this seems a sound move to make each as lean as possible.

If you are in NZ, leave a comment about your broadband experiences. If overseas, let us know what kind of speeds/price you are getting where you are.

Till next time


Useability Part 2

Websites are an interesting beast. They are a great place for information, can make you lots of money in additional sales or enquiries.

On the other side is the science of making them do what you want. Statisitics, Usability Studies and many more forms of research allow web designers and website owners the opportunity to tweak and change their websites to the maximum advantage.

But how many people actually know that there is a lot of information out there to use in the betterment of their online presence.

While doing research for our revamp (we were working with Katherine Kozel from Marketing Online) we discussed some simple usability information like where people look when they scan a web page. (ZDNet have a great article here)

It is interesting to see the patterns people have when looking at webpages and therefore where you need to place your most important information.

Another resource is Jakob Nielsens, Jakob is seen as a guru in this field and is well worth a look.

More resources in the next post.

Till Next Time


Telecom is getting it’s day…and losing

Telecom lost it’s second commerce commission ruling today onthe back of it’s last one a wek ago. Suddenly Telecom is being told by those with the power that they are indeed a monopoly and that they are indeed hurting competition in New Zealand

This weeks battle was about the maximum speed provided to resellers of Telecoms service. (UBS) Now Telecom need to provide the service at it’s technological maximum rather than the self imposed maximum by Telecom.

Now, it may be me, but isnt this common sense? Telecom already provide faster speeds to it’s own customers, so why can’t the rest of the industry follow on.

And predictably, Telecom looks like appealing the decision, spinning the process out a whole lot longer.

However, it is looking like they are starting to lose the battle.

One of their crutches is the “Kiwi Share”, this is, for those of you not from NZ, where Telecom provides free local calls to us.

They say that they cant run as a proper business and offer all of these concessions unless the Kiwi Share is abolished. This coming from a company that has made around $800m in profits over the last few years!

Maybe, in the future, the Kiwi Share will come to an end, but in my opinion, $800m is too much to be complaining about.

Till Next Time