Thursday, October 28, 2010

Are we a dying breed ?

Is it really beneficial to build and maintain an online persona when it is fraught with problems all around the corner? This thought was echoed on a thread on, which happens to be a very popular social forum for java technology enthusiasts.
One of my acquaintance had also, quite recently expressed reservations about the same due to the lack of appreciation. Whether his comment is just his perception or is it the truth, remains to be seen. The concept of professional blogging too remains an elusive concept for me and as far as I have observed, this remains largely and exercise in isolation or through and 'tool'.

In the google trends on blogging, it appeared that the search volume index dropped to an all time low in the last quarter of 2010 ever since the usage curve became consistent since 2007. The reference of blogs in the news also became erratic and dropped during this period.

This leads to an interesting conclusion; is twitter really ushering in an era of microblogging since the people don't really want to go that extra mile for sharing their thoughts ? Applying social networking in the above comparison definitely causes no raised eyebrows as it is quite clear that social networking has taken the lead for the online citizens.

As the aftermath of this change, you can expect greater emphasis on the management of information over these platforms - both for commercial and research purposes as well as a general change in the dissemination of information. This is because instead if the traditional Author-reader/follower role, we're fundamentally shifting towards an peer to peer approach with spontaneous interactions. So instead of following your favorite blog and waiting for the posts to come in, real time and probably, geographically aware interactions rule the roost. Social networking today has spread much beyond socializing with friends, family and that 'hot chick' profile(pun intended) to an information sharing portal. It is customizable as a mini internet with all the users being able to be the generators of the content.

So if you are a techie or business savvy, you can utilize this change for your benefit. What do you feel about this ? are there any new developments in this arena that you are aware of ? please do comment about it.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

From theory to practice- Transitioning isn't as easy as it seems

I've been involved recently with the task of creating different projects. In order to do this, I followed the simplest and most important rule in the book – just put the most dedicated individuals on your team. However, with the induction of each separate member in the team, the allocation of responsibilities became more complex and the communication too started becoming a thorn in the flesh for the project vision that I had in mind. However, through agile approaches, currently I am able to lead and integrate my team effectively.
I didn't had enough time to bask in the glory of my newly-founded team equilibrium when my junior students asked me to mentor for their project too (we're having a common project by IBM, namely TGMC 2010). Okay, I said, and went into their class for a briefing. Upon entering the class, I was surrounded by a group of around 70 students, all willing to enter (and most of them already have) in a contest requiring people to submit Ajax driven websites that leverage SOA as their middleware, but very few having experience in even basic html . To get the people up and running, I created a blog wrote a basic how-to (, after 4 days, I am yet to get a comment from these people and have resigned to the fate that they need to work really hard if they ever want to see anything at the end of the tunnel. A few of them might deliver a workable solution after 6 months, but for the rest of them, the pain would be inevitable. From my side, I am willing to mentor any person who is a quick learner of jsp and middleware stuff and although I don't know much about the IBM's product usage, I am willing to learn and help others ease into deployment into IBM specific technologies like DB2 and Websphere/RAD. This incident has led me to think about project management in a new light, and now what I am feeling personally is that it is as important to have an able team as it is to find a mentor. Apart from this, it is the approach that matters for an individual, rather than his/her skills.