Archive for the ‘interesting’ Category

50% work at companies with fewer than 1000

February 16, 2018 Leave a comment

In the tech space, there’s often confusion about the “mid market or SMB” segments; there usually are no standard definitions between companies. I, hence, found the following chart in a report (Credit Suisse, September 2017) on Oracle’s potential opportunity in the mid-market interesting since it has precise numbers.

employment by firm size

Apparently while ~1/2 of employees work for firms with fewer than 1000 people, ~30% work for firms greater than 10,000.


Categories: interesting, tips Tags: ,

Glassdoor “face-lift” costs six figures?

February 5, 2018 Leave a comment

officeInteresting article in the New Yorker a few weeks ago on the rise of Glassdoor and the changes that it has brought to the way companies manage their brand. Glassdoor, a company founded ~10 years ago, is the second most popular jobs website (after and is now worth $1B. Apparently ~80% of job seekers in the US read its reviews. The part that caught my eye was the fact that while a “basic” profile page for a company at the site is free, to have a claimed page (“the face-lift”), one must pay Glassdoor a minimum of $6K a year to something well into the six figures. Sounds like a shakedown to me.

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Fake followers cost a penny each

January 28, 2018 Leave a comment

Great article in the NYT today about the rise of companies selling followers to people on Twitter. Apparently the going rate is about a penny per follower. That’s a deal when compared to what an ‘influencer’ may make with a single promotional tweet – $2000 if you have 100,000 followers and $20k if you have a million.

Categories: digital, interesting Tags: ,

Indian middle class ~7x smaller than projected

January 22, 2018 Leave a comment

middle classs missingThe much vaunted Indian middle class (expected to be about 300-400M) is actually about 50M according to a well written article in the Economist. Some other tidbits:

  • Only 3% of Indians have actually flown abroad
  • There’s only about 50M online shoppers active in India

This is not to say that India doesn’t have its share of plutocrats: There are about 200,000 millionaires and about 100 billionaires. Definitely worth a read if you are helping shape plans around this anticipated middle class.

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Shattering the ML prediction hysteria

November 26, 2017 Leave a comment

MLThere’s a not a single day that goes by without an article or ten about how ML (machine learning) is going to take over the world. (e.g. a quick search on Google today offers predictions about it transforming customer service, transforming out cities etc.).

So it was refreshing to read an article in MIT’s Tech Review (“The Seven Deadly Sins of AI Predictions”) about what’s real in ML vs. what’s hype and an over extrapolation. In essence, the author (who just happens to be the founder of iRobot among other accomplishments) offers a few reasons:

  • We overestimate tech in the short run and overestimate in the long run (think GPS)
  • All tech has limits. We are not taking that into account yet for ML
  • ML today is pretty narrow in what it can do
  • We’re stretching (too far) the concept of learning
  • The speed of deployment is going to be limited by what tech already exists (e.g. PLCs are being used in Tesla’s ultra modern factory in Freemont)

Definitely worth a read.

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Origins of PowerPoint

November 8, 2017 Leave a comment

For those consultants (and other corporate monkeys) that have the unfortunate need to spend their waking hours in PowerPoint, I thought this article from IEEE on the history of the software may be interesting. Apparently one of the first decks was a fictional pitch from Columbus to the Queen of Spain.

first powerpoint

What surprised me was how little things have actually changed. Sure there are more bells and whistles, but the essentials are pretty much the same as they were 30 years ago. Maybe the evolution to long form word documents that Amazon famously imposed is way overdue.

Future of warehouses?

November 2, 2017 Leave a comment

It seems like there’s not a week (or is it day?) that goes by without much hand wringing about how machines are going to take over humans. The New Yorker led with this this week on its cover. Buried in the article on this topic was a eye opening (for me) piece on the future of warehousing, led by companies such as Symbiotic.

warehouse future

What’s different about companies such as these (rather than companies that simply automate pieces of the way warehouses currently work), is that they sell fully automated warehouse systems. A few tidbits that caught my eye:

  • Since the robots don’t need light to operate, the warehouse requires 35% less energy than conventional warehouses.
  • The warehouses can run ~24 hours a day.
  • It costs ~$50M to install, and pays for itself in about 4.5 years
  • Apparently Target, Walmart and Coca Cola are experimenting with this

If you are interested , there’s a longer (but older) article on this from the WSJ.