Taste of Technology Small Business series kicks off its sessions with cloud computing

This week in New York I had the pleasure of sitting in one of several Taste of Technology sessions. Held at the Samsung Experience retail store in the Time Warner building and hosted by Small Biz Technology editor Ramon Ray, the Taste of Technology sessions showcase new tools to help small businesses integrate technology in a meaningful, practical way and to discuss the direction the technology industry is heading as a whole.

The May 2010 session panel consisted of Jonathan Rochelle, Group Product Manager for Google; John Conklin, Business Productivity Solutions Specialist for Microsoft; and Steve Greenwood, Head of Products for start up DropIO.  Each covers how their products rely on the cloud to deliver quality service. Highlights included a review of Google Apps, discussion on the upcoming SkyDrive for Office Live (my personal favorite, it is additional storage and free features with Office 2010), and an explanation of DropIO, a new online storage service in which uploaded files & video which can be shared regardless of file format. Given the Apple-Adobe battle over Flash (A reminder was announced today as NBC and TBS declined to place their content on the iPad: see the Marketwatch article), DropIO gives a means to share video without concern about the format available to the user, although DropIO is used privately and meant for a few user,  as opposed to video sharing sites like YouTube.

Much of the discussion turned to browser usage, with many questions from the audience regarding reverse compatibility and how much that reverse compatibility — browser, internet capability — may hold back some segment of internet users.  Security of course came up as well.

There are other Taste of Technology Small Business sessions planned through the year, in New York City and soon to be announced locations. For more information, take a look at the Smallbiztechnology site for details.  Ramon is a great guy and excellent host, having attended the Small Biz Technology Summit earlier this year, which featured Seth Godin and a wide range of speakers.


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Reading of We Shall Overcome by Stuart Scott for Black History Month (Feb 2010)

(from February 2010)

It’s not everyday one gets to share a book on which a client help create, so I am figuring a healthy shout-out is in order here.

Stuart Scott created a coffeetable book called We Shall Overcome: A Song That Changed The World.   The book tells the story of how the famous song played a galvanizing role in the civil rights movement, as well as other social events during the period. There is  a CD recording of the song included with the book.

Terrance Cummings, a former Zimana client, created the illustrations for the book.  Cummings is an award winning illustrator, an art director, and a former teacher at Parsons School of Design.  He has illustrated several books in his past, along with managing catalog layout design and graphic design projects for corporate clients.  He has a studio in New Jersey, just outside of New York City.

Stuart Scott’s appearance will be at Politics and Prose in Washington DC on February 11th (click here to learn more) .  You can purchase the book via Amazon (click here for purchase).  The Amazon site also has a cool video to accompany the post.

I wish the very best to Stuart and Terrance.

And I wish the very best to all during Black History Month.



First Post, First Dance

Welcome to the first post of Zimanablog!  This blog is support by Zimana, a new innovative analytic consultant firm dedicated to helping businesses make the most of web analytics data and business metrics for strategic advantage.

As founder of Zimana, I am excited about this first effort! Zimanablog makes possible a dialogue for great ideas on analytics and associated concepts that deliver value for firms and organizations.

Our company website and logo was created by Studio150, a web development firm based in Brooklyn, New York. Currently Zimana is based in Huntsville, Alabama, so all coordination was via email and phone calls.  I’ve done similar communication on a project for a client based in Osaka, Japan.

These dances of communication are no different than what goes on across the world, as thousands of businesses large and small use various means of communication.  And it’s a dance that goes way back before Skype and Wi-Fi — The songs have changed, but its the same DJ on the one-and-two’s!  I remember the video conferences in my Ford days during the 1990s, speaking to program teams based in Australia as well as plant teams based in Louisville, KY and Edison, NJ.

But what makes this dance worthwhile in business is an analysis of the communication content and its frequency — how much value is derived and how much overhead is used to create that value.  This information can create an analytic strategy to minimize costs and maximize profits, particularly as more and more businesses become “micro-global firms” and interact with each other for products and services. Growing businesses must learn to take moments to analyze its efforts so that more productivity and value can occur.  This is especially critical for service-based businesses.

What ways do you think businesses can strive to not only work together but measure the value created?  Your posts are welcome and encouraged…

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