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Archive for June, 2008

When plain old whacking works!!!

Posted by tggokul on June 27, 2008

I am a firm believer that machines are becoming more like people because of the amount of interactions that take place between Humans and machines has become multi-fold. OK, I accept I sound like a nut. But check this out.

MY four month old DSC-T70 Sony Digital Camera, started giving me some problems. Whenever I switched on the camera, I got the error E:61:00 and I couldn’t take pictures at all. There was no mention of that in the Manual other than the fact that it was an “out of focus” error and has to be given for servicing. I decided to see what others though about this problem and I reached this site.

The fix for this problem was a simple giving a whack to the camera. I honestly thought this was a prank being played but their seemed to alteast 50-60 people who seemed to have done it. I decided to try it out ( since it was anyway under warranty) and couple of smacks later (whacked it on the back of a book), the error went away and it as good as new!! In fact it could be my imagination. I think the clarity is better as well!!

Now you tell me, aren’t machines becoming more like humans?

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Posted in General | 19 Comments »

You pay peanuts, you get monkeys!!

Posted by tggokul on June 20, 2008

Here is a company ( we shall call “X”) that is an outbound call center mostly for Indian companies. They were on a certain outbound solution and decided that though it was a very good solution, it was not cost effective when they wanted to grow into a 3000-5000 seater. For every seat, they had to pay for a license which increased their TCO. So they decided to go with the Outbound Solution of another (2nd ) vendor. This was last November time frame.

The second vendor’s outbound solution would take sometime to be ordered,shipped and installed. So this “X” decided to go with a third vendor, who had a very cheap solution, quick to install and go live on production. This was a stop gap arrangement till the second vendor’s solution could be fully installed. Now the third vendor had given some hardware specifications for the expected load and the hardware was slightly expensive. “X” rationalized that since they were going the second vendor way in the near future, and the current solution was only a stop-gap arrangement, decided to use some cheap servers instead of the suggested servers.

Needless to say, the six months ‘X” ran with the third solution was a miserable experience for both “X” as well as the third vendor. There were performance issues, late night crashes, lack of stability. “X” finally went to the second solution early June and were relieved that they didn’t have to go through the mess. They bad mouthed the third solution and the damage was done.

Now, who is to blame. The third solution would have been perfect had it been run on the hardware that had been suggested. Was company “X” to be blamed for going cheap? Was it the mistake of the third vendor not to have put his foot down and say that “X” had to run in that specific hardware. To be honest “X” got what it wanted and wouldn’t care about what happened to third vendor. The third vendor would have to build its reputation all over again.

There is a popular saying “Whether you put cloth to a knife or knife to a cloth, it is always the cloth that gets torn”. It was the vendor’s mistake and it was its responsibility to have set the expectations right with “X” that they are paying peanuts and they will get only monkeys!!!

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Who is going to buyout Avaya?

Posted by tggokul on June 11, 2008

By now, the storm of Lou stepping down as CEO has passed over. Yet the question still remains. What is going to happen to Avaya that was bought over by SilverLake partners just over a year ago.

I have been hearing from different sources that top guys ( one was even close to Lou) are being let go and this would only mean that Avaya is going to be sold to the topmost bidder. Either as a whole entity or after splitting them into different entities.

Interestingly though, there are two names that are being floated as possible buyers. One is Cisco ( is there any deal in the world, where their name is not flouted?) and the other is very surprisingly Nuance. I can understand why Cisco’s name is prominent. The interim CEO who is taking over from Lou is none other than Charles Giancarlo, a prominent ex-Ciscoian. 

Nuance is trying to enter the PBX/ACD world to further stabilize their speech market and this would be a logical step. Microsoft and upto some extent IBM are developing Speech engines and the only way for Nuance to continue their stranglehold would be to enter the PBX sector as well.Nortel seemed a little interested a year ago, but with their current state of affairs would not be brave enough to venture in this.

One thing is sure. The face of Avaya would change in the next couple of months.

Posted in Cisco, VoIP/IMS | 2 Comments »