I’m fed up with marketer’s


I think they’ve got a lot to answer for. IT is such a hype driven industry and its all because of the marketers hyperbole.

 Massively over used terms like ‘revolutionary’, ‘next generation’ and ‘2.0’ are thrown around incessantly. All they do is confuse our clients and create a need for more marketing spend.

 Examples  of this nonsense in action

  • ICT – that would be convergence? or IT&T ?
  • IBM branded cars with “integrated business productivity solutions “ – otherwise known as a fax and printer in one – wow
  • Anything 2.0 – that would be something older and (becoming) crusty renamed to be cool and new – web (2.0), enterprise (2.0) anyone?
  • Social networks – err Chat groups with more features?
  • iPhone – (i’d better be careful here, this is hallowed ground) – the advent of the mobile phone was the revolution, every innovation since is evolution.


I’m being deliberately cynical in my examples, but my point is that we, the marketers are becoming our own worst enemies. Customers have to deal with the complexity and confusion we create. Its no wonder they continually say trust is a key element in vendor selection.

Lets just keep it real. Lets apply some sanity to the way we bandy around words, even check the dictionary once or twice

The best moment at the games so far.

Off topic, but i’m a proud Kiwi and I need to say this.


New Zealand hasn’t won a medal so far at this years Olympics, but to me yesterday was a highlight. Moss Burmester got 4th in the 200m butterfly.  A real shame and it must be so gutting to spend a lifetime training for a moment and get that close.


He got out of the pool and immediately got cornered by the press. His words, in true Ed Hillary style.


“ that really hurt, I left everything in the pool”


Good on ya mate.





As an aside, when i was an elite athlete i used to pack away the good memories, believe me you need them when you bad ones. I’m guessing you’re having a bad one right now.


So my small words of wisdom to Moss, put this away into your memory bin.


Michael Phelps won that race, and became the most successful Olympian of all time. No shame losing there mate.

You beat Michael Phelps over 50 fly at the Olympics, there's only 1 person in the world who can say that

Beating your own PB and setting a new commonwealth record is a helleva an achievement

The internet is not flat

I've written before about the fact that SaaS companies need to think a lot more about the infrastructure that brings their customers to them. That infrastructure (mainly) being the internet. One of the things that i hadn't thought about but came up in discussions with people about networks is the fairly stunning statement that the internet is not flat. This is stunning because it flies in the face of all my internet experiences, a  point i argued and won.


To the average user of the internet, this statement is not true. The internet you connect too is flat, one pipe (or modem) in, and you see everything on the net. Content goes up and down your pipe and you pay your flat fee or mb usage and away you go. No concept of the tyranny of distance exists except for speed.


But for web properties this is not the case.  When you are a big property (that is have a lot of traffic) the web isn’t flat, in fact its made up of a bunch of geographic hops that funnel traffic to and from you. This traffic (known as backhaul ) costs carriers to move around and because of this they like to charge for it. Typically the calculation is based on the distance the traffic has to move x the amount of traffic. (this ignores international peering ).

Some web properties don’t like to pay for this traffic. The subscribe to the belief that the internet is flat and try to get around it. A couple of results from this, firstly they tend to underspec their connections to their user population and end up delivering really poor user experiences, such as this really frustrating experience from blip TV.

The second is that they go with low cost providers. I can’t speak for the rest of the world but here that means signing up with international carriers who are using marginal pricing to leverage their fixed investment to get to this part of the world OR are using assets already written down when they filed for chapter 11 in the US.  This provides the web property with cheap bandwidth but actually means the user requests are now spanning the world, that is going all the way to the US and back to see a web page owned by a NZ company. End result, slower response times for users or consumption or higher cost international bandwidth which if you follow logical path gets factored into the end users flat fee or mb usage costs.

End result someone pays.

My point of this bog, the web properties need to give more thought to the internet infrastructure that they rely on to do business. They should factor in the end user experience when making their technical and commercial decisions around where to locate their datacentres and how they buy bandwidth. It cost real money to make the internet run and there are no free rides, to me its a classic user pays model.