Oct 30, 2010

The Open-Economics of Technology-1

While I was studying engineering, there was a huge fan-following towards this Open-Source / Open Standards in technology.. I guess thats still there.. Microsoft is/was seen as the villain.. Linux was the holy grail of computer science folks..

6-8 years have passed by after that .. Now, the villain is Apple , with its tightly controlled iOs,Appstore ecosystem.. And the perceived open-angel is Google with its Android ecosystem. Steve Jobs in his various interviews and talks insists a profound point about this open-ness. "Ultimately customers are not bothered about whether the product is open or not..They are bothered about the experience with the product"...

There is this nice NYTimes article that I came across recently.. They are comparing the Mac-Windows phase with iPhone-Android 'battle' now. In the quest for perfection in experience, Apple has largely kept a close-knit system. In the quest for economies of scale, Android has taken a lot of manufacturers into its fold. For Google, achieving economies of scale matters a lot..Mobile Ad-revenue is a space that they really want to dominate. And to do that, they really need to make a large user-base on Android..

Is this really a head-on battle as analysts have been speculating ? Apple's goal is to create break-through products that gives a compelling user-experience.. Google's goal is to dominate Ad-revenue share from Search.. If we look from these two contrasting perspectives,Apple shouldn't ideally bother much even if Android installed base is gets much larger than iPhone base.. As long as there are enough App-developers making good Apps for iPhone, they should not really be bothered even if Android installed base is high..

Right now, making an App on iPhone is far more profitable than making an Android App.. But if the scale-economies turn the developers too towards Android, Apple should start to bother.. But the customer segment using iPhone is affluent. And, they are really not going to turn to Android for a fad towards open-technology anytime soon.. For them, its just the experience that matters.. I guess Jobs has figured that out.

Oct 5, 2010

Being in 'Extremes'

  I've realized something of late.. I live in extremes.. I'm either extremely professional or a totally lazy guy.. I'm either extremely competitive in some cases, whereas in others I really don't bother to raise even an effort..I'm either emotionally dead ( which many people have accused me of ) or i'm an emotional wreck in rarest of the rare situations.. I'm either very calm & composed or  i'm extremely frustrated... A subject either interests me a lot or it just doesn't go anywhere near me...   I don't belong to anywhere in between..

   The problem in being in extremes is that when you are in one extreme, even  in situations which require the opposite extreme behavior, you tend to fluster... Its very tough for me to strike a middle path. There is a property of extremes because of which this middle path is extremely difficult..Typically if you take a pair of contrasting extremes, one extreme ( say, extreme A)  would mean you expect a lot from your environment/society/immediate circle of friends/family...In the opposite extreme ( say extreme B), you would expect nothing from anyone.. If you are in extreme A, absence of some expected behavior would would tend to push you more & more towards extreme A.. You wish you were @ extreme B.. But switching is kind of out of our control.. Situations may have modeled / cultured you to be in say, extreme B behavioral state.. switching to extreme A is very difficult... And once you switch somehow, each and every situation that may require the opposite extreme behavior won't even bother you..But may bother others a lot :)