Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Perfect Timing, right next door to failure

One of those thoughts/observations that I have been thinking about: how perfect timing is right next door to failure. You turn up at a bus stop a second before the bus arrives, excellent. A second late, your late, their is no possibility of getting on the bus. OK, you can be two-200 seconds early but there comes a point of the opportunity time cost that out weighs the benefits. Anyway, it could be -30c at the bus stop, that may kill you.

Today, I am waitng for my new laptop. A day too late, but my timing was almost perfect, the old one just gave out yesterday. One day out still brings pain, the need to wait in to sign for the new one and not having access to my local email history etc. All files are backed up on the web so I will download them to the new machine. In fact, most of my files are online now so all I needed was to ask a friend for access to their PC, which I was grateful for the use of today.

Startups and perfect timing. I think all entrepreneurs would take perfect timing over all other variables e.g. skill, intellect, money, people. Being at the right place at the right time wins out, history would show. While missing a bus is a big pain but being early is just a wait, being early in a startup market is/can be painful ie. the costs in terms of time, money or frustration on the response of others can accumulate to a point where failure is reached. However, true grit, determination and persistance can win out as you expand the odds of perfect timing heading your way.

looking for gas

Walking home on Saturday evening, near 11pm I saw a tall dark, leather clad biker trying to hail down some passing cars. He caught sight of me and shouts, do you know where the nearest gas station is? He runs across the street to talk to me. He pointed to his Bike which had run out fuel and he explained he just came of Highway 237. I knew where the gas (filling station) was and it was on route to my apartment. So, we shared conversation along the way. He started to explain that no one would stop their cars to help. He thought his large, drak presense was the reason. Not that my mind hadn't processed the situation in that manner too but I listened. Turns out he was a country guy at heart to and he was grateful to find the fuel station.

Sunday, March 25, 2007

Supper Happy Developers House 16 right now

My first trip north on CalTrain to Burlingham. First part of making it to Super Happy Developers House in the high hills of Hillsborough. Need to pick up supplies, food for the BBQ and a drink to share. Call the taxi as it is a long walk up hill. I am here.

Met a few familiar faces and the geek chat is in full flow.

Saturday, March 24, 2007

Lost on Light Rail

I was two stop along on the light rail service heading towards Yahoo! offices when a person on the platform popped their head in to say that the elderly lady he was with was lost. He was not getting on the train so asked if anyone could comfort and help the lady. He thought she needed to get to a station called Tasmin. I was at the other end of the carriage but no one else seemed to be listening so I nodded my head and the elderly lady came and sat across from me. I restated the she was looking for Tamsin station? She replied in what I assumed was one of the Chinese languages. So, I went and pointed to the map? But her main priority was looking out of the window trying to recognise a familiar landmark or building. She was clearly upset and she took out a religious/lucky charm type objective which we said a prayer too. It is frustrating when you want to help more but you can not communicate via speaking.

I also knew that I was getting off in the train on a couple of stops, many before the Tasmin station so I was thinking about what I could do before leaving. Luckily, the stop before I left a new passenger got on the train so I went up to them to explain the situation and ask if they could point out when the train arrived a Tasmin station. They were happy to help. And as I left the train, I heard the lady talking to the passenger. I had the feeling she would find her way. I hope I was right.

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Common Sense - the wisdom of the crowd

I wrote a posting on the Scottish enlightenment at the end of last year. One of the three central characters in the movement was Thomas Reid, of The University of Aberdeen. He brought to the philosophy table, COMMON SENSE.

One of the main themes, (meme's I think they call them around here, silicon valley) is the WISDOM OF THE CROWD, some comment that all start ups have a play on this concept. In my view, if they are not then trouble could be coming ahead for their ventures.

But what I had not really connected in my thinking was that COMMON SENSE and the WISDOM OF THE CROWD are from the same school of thought. So, if we are looking for or indeed need a 12 centuary set of intellectual conepts of thinking to give a frame work for the evolution of society then, the Wisdom of the Crowd is the new application of common sense that will take us forward.

Peeled tatties whilte, yellow, purple

My first go at purple tatties (potatoes). Guess what, taste like potato!

EU panel Silicon Valley

EU panel Silicon Valley, originally uploaded by ecotorch.

My first networking event last week was hosted by the American German Startup Association, or something like that.

Just like one of my first events of last year, one of the panel set out the fact that the big silicon valley ideas and success come from a mix of outsiders and locals. No words could inspire more.

Sunday, March 18, 2007

Accents Top to bottom of UK .... then in California

I was reflecting on the journey I have made over the last two weeks and how the people accents changed as I went. On the business, I spoke to an national of India now living in Aberdeen, Edinburgh accents while dashing to the train. Newcastle, Yi dominant in the air, York, more polite then the London pull starts to kick in a commuter around Peterbrough join the train. London under ground, just choose any language of the world. Southampton the lighter tone accents, same for the Isle of Wight. Silicon Valley, like back being on the London underground. A real treat to listen to so many native tongues.

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

welcome back to MV

The entrepreneurial journey continues.

Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Heading West

I start the journey West tomorrow via the deep south of UKland. See you on route or in the bay.

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Upper Deeside Covered in Snow

I took this video on route to BarCampScotland, in Edinburgh.

Sunday, March 04, 2007

BarCampScotland open to share & learn

BarCampScotland was a great success.

The School of Informatics at The University of Edinburgh were our hosts and the venue provided lots of space, open areas, lecture rooms and smaller rooms. And people turned up in great numbers. I took a spell at the registration table and they all took to the idea of writing three tag words to their name badge. Those wanting to present soon added their name to the open grids.

A plug for Edinburgh Uni. was presented then we all got a chance to introduce ourself in a round of speed introductions. Then the event got off and running.

All, in all the day was over before I realized. Felt like we had just begun. Well done to all those that participated and the co-planners that made it happen. I plan to post some video and photos are on flickr.

Here to the next one.

Thursday, March 01, 2007

Spring is in the air

Well, it is on aboynejames.co.uk as it goes green for the arrival of spring.