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Everything posted by JimDiGritz

  1. Quite. Never forget that in ancient Greece, the very cradle of Democracy, the term "democrat" was originally an epithet and referred to 'one who panders to the crude and mindless whims of the masses.'
  2. That's not the half of it. I liquidated some assets and ended up with a wedge of shiny new €500 Euro notes. I soon found out why this note is dubbed the 'Bin Laden'... I couldn't spend them, or convert them. I tried to buy a piece of expensive luggage in Montpelier.. the shop refused the note. I tried to buy some replacement Sennheiser headphones at the airport - they too wouldn't accept them. I got back to the UK, tried to convert them in numerous Bureau de Changes.. none would accept them! I tried to pay them in to a Barclays (Premium!) account and was told by the cashier that they can't accept €500 Euro notes... I finally managed to pay them in to my HSBC account, however the notes where checked and double checked by every member of staff behind the counter. So, cash ain't so grand if you can't do anything with it! Made me realise what capital controls might feel like.
  3. Heh. Forget at first world living standards, for a billion of the poorest people on Earth to each have just one solitary working lightbulb we would need 100 years of intensive development in energy production and power distribution infrastructure.
  4. This is why democracy is such a bad idea, and I don't mean that in a 'only half joking" way. It is seriously a bad idea.
  5. Wow. Anyone who believes that the best way to pay off a small mortgage debt which is over halfway through it's term is to go ahead and increase the debt and take on another liability needs their lumps felt. Seriously. At this rate I fear we will start seeing FSA posters outside the bookies offering miss-selling compensation if 'Dancing with Rain' didn't get first through the post in the 3.15 at Epsom.
  6. The really pathetic thing is that neither the pro-Rand nor the anti-Rand elements have a clue what she really advocated. This is understandable because half the time she didn't understand herself what she was advocating. It's also understandable because most of those bellowing the loudest on either side have never read her stuff and have formed their opinions second-hand by reading the opinions of clowns like this 'small business owner' who think they believe what she believed. Rand was anti-government. She was anti anyone who made their living governing. She was anti-religion and considered religious leaders to be witch-doctors who exploit those who believe in a religion.. In Atlas Shrugged, one of her major bad guys was James Taggart, president of Taggart Transcontinental - a moocher who couldn't run a railroad but an expert in using politics to steal from other railroad companies. Most of her bad guys are actually archetypes of the bozos we have running much of the western world. And yet most of her "followers" and "critics" think she was automatically in favour of any "businessman". Her heroes were mostly imaginary. Historically, it is almost impossible to point to someone who measured up to her ideas of a good guy. Her economic and political ideas were nonsense, but her criticism was often dead-on. She recognised the moochers, and she recognised the kind of actions they took to loot and steal. Anyone watching our political class in action should have been calling them looters all along. So pathetically, the politicians she hated think they are living up to her highest ideas. And the "progressives" like Obama who should be attacking the real looters and moochers are busy attacking Ayn Rand because John Galt was one of her wet dreams.
  7. 100% Have been unsuccessful applying for Canada and NZ over the past 12 months. Essentially I need a rock solid job offer and probably a Phd to get into either. My only other option is Ireland...
  8. Wow. I literally have the Sainburys Cash ISA paperwork on my desk from last week after First Direct pulled their ISA rate. ****** that noise I may go just out and buy gold...
  9. I'm glad that you as someone on the dev side are on the same page as me.
  10. So the main takeaway here is that you have identified a broken process which is causing your organisation and probably many others ££ pain. Good start. Now you need to figure out how to completely de-risk your proposed solution. Spending six-figures pursuing the standard, accepted and understood 'solution' to their problem is far easier to defend than taking a risk on an unproven solution which may or may not be a silver bullet. As I said earlier, my main line of work is now working with tech start-ups to help develop value propositions and positioning. I'm not going to promote my services on here however I have worked with dozens of software start-ups or early stage companies and all of them have struggled to get their first 'beachhead' customer. It is one of the things I see especially with companies started by engineers/developers. They often have brains the size of small planets and often are a bit sniffy about sales & marketing. All too often it is a given that their superior product will be simply be bought. it isn't. Finally, if I can offer another piece of advice pick a sub section of the market and try to crack that first. Don't make the mistake of thinking that just because your solution is horizontal or can help almost every company you should try to go after every customer. Become famous for something. Again this is counter intuitive to most non sales/marketing people. Surely you should go after as many customers as possible? No, that's called boiling the ocean and it never works. Get known as the solution to problem X for HR departments - even if it is precisely the same problem that finance or operations has. This is how you gain traction and build momentum.
  11. Hi, I thought that I should add my tuppenceworth here. Firstly, sorry to hear about the redundancy, and bravo for wanting to strike out on your own. A couple of thoughts based on my 17 years in software sales: The NUMBER 1 problem you will face is not financing, protecting your IP, software development, or arranging the legal structure. The biggest hurdle will be selling the product. I've spent the vast majority of my sales career at start-ups. Over the years I've sold a metric shit tonne of new-to-market software, I've also failed to sell a similar amount. Assuming that you are selling an enterprise software solution to the sweetspot medium enterprise the problem that you will find is that frankly they don't actually want a better mousetrap. Trust me. They are hugely risk adverse, and the purchase cost is not the risk they care about. You will talk to lots of interested people, and have a fair few interesting meetings. The problem will start when you need them to commit. Here is where it gets tricky. I suggest that you read Crossing the Chasm by Geoffery Moore, but as a very simple summary you will find that the market is essentially divided into early adopters and the late majority. The early adopters may very well buy your product however in tough economic times these innovator risk takers are very thin on the ground. The late majority will NOT buy your product. Why? Simply because they are not making the best decision (for their company), instead they will make the most defensible decision, the one that they won't get fired for making. They will buy the staid and clearly inferior competitors product. So given the choice between unproven start-up X with some radical new sexy features/workflow/whatever and boring market incumbent company Y they will go for the safe choice nine times out of ten. So how do you deal with this? You can make a SaaS offering with a high volume transactional low-touch sales model, however if you are offering innovation then this often requires education and this simply won't happen by itself. Brute force, you can spend years and a lot of money knocking on doors to get that first customer. Alternatively you build the solution with your first customer(s). This is how the majority of enterprise software start-ups I know have succeeded. Use your close industry contacts to get a customer before you build the solution. Build it according to their requirements and get commitment throughout the process. Once you have the software up and running you can productise it and create a go-to-market plan to sell it to other companies. If you don't have these deep personal industry contacts then find someone who does and give them half the company! (hint: not a salesperson) This may sound a little negative however I have seen some of the most game-changing technologies of the future disappear into obscurity simply because no one wanted to take a risk. Despite clear advantages, value and patently obvious ROI the market wasn't willing to commit until someone else had. Catch 22. If, on the other hand you are diving into the consumer market you have another set of market penetration issues to overcome. Let us know how it goes, and good luck.
  12. Finally a mega-corp coffee chain catches a break... http://www.thedailymash.co.uk/news/business/starbucks-crowded-out-by-ruthless-independent-tearooms-2012101845489
  13. Great comment, however I saw neither LIAR nor LOANS so I am unable to know what to make of this...
  14. Shale is a complete joke. Crappy EROEI combined with demand destruction meets Russian Gazprom's 43.3 trillion m3 of natural gas. Result. One huge subsidised ponzi which will drive down prices in the short term and gut the productive natural gas producers. Frankly shale gas is just a political PR campaign with devastating environmental costs.
  15. Christ. When I was reading the OP I was expecting this to be available for £100/month or even free. Obviously I didn't know where this place was but the concept of paying rent with sweat equity is barely understandable if there is no rent. £550 month!!!! In Colchester!!! Limited to 6 months!!! It's a dump!!! Modernise at your own cost as part of the agreement!!!! 5 bucks and my right nut says that when this doesn't get snapped up the boomer landlords will tut and mutter to their Daily Express reading friends that today's generation are too lazy to take on a little hard work. Christ! I need a lie down.
  16. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nY6G2E8dgWU
  17. Has anyone seen the expensive utter shite that the Trussel Trust (and others) actually give away? Digestive biscuits, tinned spaghetti, lemonade, Kipling cakes, microwave meals etc. If you think I am making it up, have a look at this sample shot on their website: The BBC coverage of this also showed well meaning volunteers stuffing boxes full of Bisto granules, frozen pizza and chocolate mousse deserts. These well meaning charities are making it worse. They should give out a bag of spuds, a kilo of rice, lentils, some fresh seasonal fruit and veg, maybe some nice cheap cuts of meat. Millions of people all over the world would kill for that.
  18. Presented as they say without comment: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/politics/labour/9580214/Vazs-extreme-mortgage-bill-was-seven-times-higher-than-pay.html
  19. Sorry. Did I miss something? You are in council housing and yet you own 'land'.
  20. Great topic. Personally, as a primer I am a fan of Chris Martenson's Crash Course. http://www.peakprosperity.com/crashcourse It is basic, however it helps bring energy and the environment nicely into the economic picture, which I believe is too often left out in economics classes.
  21. Looks like no takers at £325k.. Down to £275k... bargain! http://www.rightmove.co.uk/property-for-sale/property-30829537.html
  22. 10. Miscellaneous and unremunerated interests My wife is a senior executive with the Financial Services Authority.
  23. http://www.theyworkforyou.com/mp/mark_prisk/hertford_and_stortford Register of Members’ Interests 8. Land and Property Part share in a commercial property in Cornwall, from which rental income is derived. (Registered 2 March 2012) 11. Miscellaneous Non-practising chartered surveyor. Let the digging commence!
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