Beiträge

WEF: How Europe can build a Silicon Valley

wef_0There is lots of intelligence at the World Economic Forum – but this piece I like in particular for many reasons. Mostly, because it is honest and realistic. It simply just does not work that some city or metropolitan area tries to be the „Silicon Valley of XYZ“ by proclamation. Too many ingredients make the actual Silicon Valley what it is and next to public-private partnership and the close-tied web of relations, the cluster, the special openness to change, itarations and – yes – failure. Adoption of change and embracing of change. And let´s be fair, also the Silicon Valley is subject to change and has been time and time again. Currently the hottest companies leave the traditional „Silicon Valley“, named after the Semiconductor-Companies there, to be headquartered im San Francisco. So really we should talk about the greater San Francisco Bay Area. There will not be two areas of this kind on this planet, because you simply cannot replicate everything AND fill it with life, just because it is a political will. And especially this won´t work for a city or even one single European nation. So I like the analysis provided in this great article of the World Economic Forum: How Europe can build a Silicon Valley. 

This is the way: Luxembourg gives Innovation easy access to Money

One thing I never quite managed to wrap my head around is the way financing for start-ups works. Well, yeah – I understand how it works and why it works like that. But fact is: A start-up and it´s visionary leaders, taking personal risks to move it forward, should focus on their business entirely and push it towards success. Instead they struggle to get to the next finance round and pay for the essentials.

Markets which make it easy to access funds to grow a business, from my point of view, got it right. It should be easy for small businesses to finance innovation and growth and when a local government is supporting that in a relevant way, thats even better.

In that sense: great initiative in Luxembourg these days, with a deal between the European Funds for Strategic Investments (EFSI) and BNP Paribas in Luxembourg for lending cheap money to innovative SMBs in the marketplace. EFSI pretty much is a tool of the EU Commission to boost innovation and jobs. So say something that the EU is a bad thing. It is not. You can read how good it really is on the EU Commissions website.

Full details on the Luxembourg deal can be found here.

 

What is a container? Application Architecture moving forward.

Recently there has been a bit of talk about „Containers“ for application design – versus Virtual Machines for instance. I am far away from being an IT expert but it sure smelled like a buzz-word that is confusing at best. So I tried to wrap my head around it. I found two articles most helpful, which is why I want to share them:

The first is from TechCrunch: WTF is a Container?

The other comes from CIO: What are Containers and why do you need them? 

Good reads, well recommended.

 

Has Pokemon Succeeded Where Retailer Loyalty Apps Failed?

paymentssourceI admit, I have adopted this headline – because I could not possibly come up with a better one. Great job, Payments Source! They published an article which reflects on a phenomenon which has greatly annoyed me some 15 years ago or so – actually I never got it, to be frank. But now, the phenomenon is back and finally I DO get it. Just in a much different sense than a stupid electronic toy that you „pay attention to“, apparently when you lack any other social interaction. :-)

Today Smombies follow their phones and not seldom are a true traffic hazard – now being steered by an app called Pokemon Go. First of all the good news: You have to move your body to play this app so give it some benefit for fighting obesity. But: you have to stare at your screen constantly which will probably boost the sale of power banks as well as it is in fact a traffic hazard. Anyway, the key thing it does is to make you search – or hunt for – Pokemon, epically ugly manga pieces of crap which you can do whatever with. This treasure hunt is what gets folks on the hook with it.

So why not place the ugly critter in a store, next to the items you want to sell? Not sure this is actually happening but Payment Source does have a point. This might be what all those loyalty apps failed about for so many years – and if thats true the current boot in market valuation for Nintendo is well deserved. Highly interesting and they got ME on the hook with it (while I refrain from playing Pokemon Go). Read for yourself here.

Addition (actually not sure it works) there was this Video on Facebook (in German) which brings back some (ugly) memory. :)

 

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