9.08.08

9.09.08

9.11.08

9.15.08

9.16.08

9.23.08

9.25.08

9.26.08

Art Journal Vol V Just Beginning

After finishing my journal last week, it was bittersweet to start a new one today. I always find that I have to get comfortable with a new journal and its size and individual characteristics each time I start a new one. I decided to use the license plate journal that I wrote about here as my new journal.

Here are the first few pages of the journal. The first image is the opening page, kind of the introduction to the journal. And the second page is a depiction of the headache that I had only behind one eye today.

{ 1.24.11 }

Self-care is something that is deeply important to me, and I continue a practice I started in graduate school, which is to keep an art journal specifically for my self-care as a therapist. You can read more about that here and here.

centeredAverage Solutions for Javabat 15

This is somewhat “not-easy-as-it-seems” array question. because there are a lot of things which we would not consider at first. Only After a thorough testing we can get the ultimate solution.

Return the "centered" average of an array of ints, which well say is the mean average of the values, except not counting the largest and smallest values in the array. Use int division to produce the final average. You may assume that the array is length 3 or more.

centeredAverage({1, 2, 3, 4, 100}) → 3
centeredAverage({1, 1, 5, 5, 10, 8, 7}) → 5
centeredAverage({-10, -4, -2, -4, -2, 0}) → –3

Source

Solution

`public int centeredAverage(int[] nums) {           if(nums.length <3 ) return 0;           int len=nums.length;            int max=Integer.MIN_VALUE ;            int min=Integer.MAX_VALUE ;            int sum=0 ;             int mini=0; // subscript of max ,min           int maxi=0;           // get max,min values and their subscripts           for(int i=0;i<len;i++){             if(nums[i]>max){               max=nums[i];               maxi=i;             }             if(nums[i]<min){               min=nums[i];               mini=i;             }           }// end for           // compute the average           for(int j=0 ; j<len; j++){              if(maxi==mini) {// all the elements are same                  sum=nums[0];                  break;              }              if(j != maxi && j != mini)                 sum+=nums[j];           }// end for          return sum/(len-2);}`

private dis play

I am very excited about an opening this weekend for a show on artist sketchbooks and journals called private (dis)play. It is at the COCA this weekend through March 22. I am making my plans to go on Friday to the opening reception.

Minggu, 26 Januari 2014

I am so excited about the art coming out of my 21 Secrets Workshop Adding Dimension! Take a look!

Tracy Carlton of Expressive Souls created this fantastic mermaid pop-up! And check her out peeking through that window! LOVE it!

Look at Tracys gorgeous envelope she created in her journal too! I love everything about it: the colors are just gorgeous and I love her idea behind it!

And check out Lisa Millers cool windows! Makes me want to walk right into her journal!

Its not too late to register for 21 Secrets. Registration is open until May 31 and the playground is open through August 1. Register for 21 Secrets by clicking the button below:

I Want USPS To Think Outside The Box

Recently I had to go to a consulate to get a visa and the consulate would only accept a USPS money order and a USPS pre-paid envelope. I went to a post office to get those. That particular post office decided to change their business hours that day to open late. I hurriedly drove to a different post office where two out of there clerks didnt know how to issue a pre-paid envelope! At personal level I never look forward to going to a post office. It invariable delays my schedule. I am met with unpleasant customer service and inefficiency everywhere. This is also true with some of the other services that I get but theres one major difference. I cannot opt out of USPS.

USPS anticipates to lose about \$7 billion during the fiscal year that ends in September. They even have their own conference called PostalVision 2020 where they have invited technology thought leaders such as Vint Cerf and many others to honestly and seriously look at the issues they have. The agenda is to:
"Postal Vision 2020/2.0 is as much a movement as it is a Conference.  It is a forum for an open and honest dialog to better understand the future of postal communications and shipping, and what this means to those who regulate, supply and use mail.  It’s about sharing ideas and knowledge with the hope of sparking innovation and the creation of new successful business models.  It’s about asking each other lots of difficult questions for which there may be many answers to consider before finding those that serve the long term health of the industry and any particular enterprise."
USPS is broken at so many levels; they have short term as well long term issues to deal with and it is likely to get uglier before it may get better. Channeling Geoffrey Moore, USPS needs to retain their core and and redefine the context. Massive fleet of trucks, logistics, and outlets in all foreseeable locations is their core strength. Postal mail and other related services is their context where they are simply unable to compete because of shrinking addressable market (due to digital communication) and poor service design that applies the legacy mindset to solve todays and tomorrows problems.

USPS should think outside the box. No pun intended.

Here are some ideas/suggestions:

Re-think mail delivery: Its perfectly acceptable to me if I only receive my mail every other day. In many cases, I am fine if I dont get my mail for a week at times. Theres nothing time-sensitive about my mail. And with changing demographics, this is true with a lot of other people as well. Incentivize customers to skip mail by offering them discount on other services and have less trucks and less people going around the neighborhoods. This brings the overall cost down and opens up new revenue opportunities.

Double down on self-service: I know USPS is trying hard to add more and more self-service kiosks but theyre not enough. Think like Coinstar and Redbox. I should be able to do everything related to USPS at the places where I can get milk at the 11th hour, money from ATM, and gas for my car. They really need to work hard to give people a reason to use USPS when people have much better alternatives to mail packages. Think of UPS, DHL, and FedEx as incumbents and leap frog them at places, using the unfair advantage that USPS has, where they cant possibly compete.

Rethink the identity: USPS doesnt directly receive federal tax dollars and it is expected to meet expenses from the revenue it generates. But, its not that black and white. Even though USPS doesnt get any tax money it receives plenty of other money via grants and other special funds. Its neither truly a government entity nor truly a business entity. If USPS needs to be fixed it needs to rethink its identity and decide whether its a complete public sector or a mix of private and public sector and how. Once that identity is set they can follow through on their revenue sources, cost measures, and building an ecosystem of partners. Mixed and complicated business structure introduces complexity at all the levels and prevents the organization to think and execute in a unified way.

missing you

Just missing my friend right now...

April 21

April 22

Google Does Not Have Innovators Dilemma

I asked a question to myself: "Why has Google been incredibly successful in defending and growing its core as well as introducing non-core disruptive innovations?". To answer my own question I ran down Googles innovation strategy through Clayton Christensens concepts and framework as described in his book "Seeing Whats Next". Here is the analysis:

Googles latest disruptive innovation is the introduction of free GPS on the Android phone. This has grave implications for Garmin. To put this innovation in the context it is a "sword and shield" style entrant strategy to beat an incumbent by serving the "overshot customers". The overshot customers are the ones who would stop paying for further improvements in performance that historically had merited attractive price premium. Google used its asymmetric skills and motivation - Android OS, mapping data, and no direct revenue expectations - as a shield to enter into the "GPS Market" to serve these overshot customers. Google later turned its shield into a "sword" strategy by disinteremediating the map providers and incentivizing the carriers with a revenue-share agreement.

On the other hand Googles core search technology and GMail are a couple of examples of "incremental to radical" sustaining innovations where Google went after the "undershot customers". The undershot customers are the ones who consume a product but are frustrated with its limitations and are willingly to switch if a better solution exists. The search engines and the web-based email solutions existed before Google introduced its own solutions. GMail delighted the users who were frustrated with their limited email quota and the search engine used better indexing and relevancy algorithms to improve the search experience. I find it remarkable that Google does not appear to be distracted by the competitors such as Microsoft who is targeting Googles core with Bing. Google continued a slow and steady investment into its sustainable innovation to maintain the revenue stream out of its core business. These investments include the next generation search platform Caffeine, social search, profiles, GMail labs etc.

Where most of the companies inevitably fail Google succeeded by spending (a lot of) money on lower-end disruptive innovations against "cramming" their sustaining innovation. Google even adopted this strategy internally to deal with the dilemma between its sustaining and disruptive innovations. One would think that the natural starting point for Google Wave would be the GMail team but its not true. In fact my friends who work for Google tell me that the GMail team was shocked and surprised when they found out that some other team built Google Wave. Adding wave-like functionality in the email would have been cramming the sustaining innovation but innovating outside of email has potential to serve a variety of undershot and overshot customers in unexpected ways. This was indeed a clever strategy.

So, whats next?

If I were AT&T I would pay very close attention to Googles every single move. Lets just cover the obvious numbers. The number of smartphone units sold this year surpassed the number of laptops sold and the smartphone revenue is expected to surpass the laptop revenue in 2012. Comcast grew their phone subscribers eight-fold with the current number exceeding 7 million. Google Voice has over 1.4 million users of which 570,000 use it seven days a week. Even though Google does not like its phone bill Google seems to be committed to make Google Voice work. This could allow Google to serve a new class of overshot customers that has a little or no need of land line, desire to stay always-connected, and hungry for realtime content and conversations. Time after time Google has shown that it can disintermediate players along its value chain. It happened to NavTeq and Tele Atlas and it is happening to other players with Google Power Meter and Chrome.

Many people argue that Chrome OS is more disruptive. I beg to differ. I believe that Chrome OS does not have near term disruption trajectory. Being wary of hindsight bias, I would go back to the disruptive innovation theory and argue that Chrome OS is designed for the undershot customers that are frustrated with other market solutions at the same level. For the vast majority of the customers it does not matter. If Google does have a grand business plan around Chrome OS it certainly will take a lot of time, resources, and money before they see any traction. I see the telco disruption happening much sooner since it serves the overshot customers. I wont be surprised if Google puts a final nail in telcos coffin and redefines the telephony.

SOA ROI interoperability and integration

If you are a SOA enabled enterprise application vendor trying to sell SOA to your customers you quickly realize that very few customers are interested in buying SOA by itself. Many customers believe SOA investment to be a non-differential one and they compare that with compliance – you have to have it and there is no direct ROI. A vendor can offer ROI if the vendor has the right integration and interoperability strategy. For customers it is all about lowering the TCO of the overall IT investment and not about looking at TCO of individual applications. SOA enabled applications with standardized, flexible, and interoperable interfaces work towards the lower TCO and provide customers sustainable competitive advantage. Generally speaking customers are not interested in the "integration governance" of the application provider as long as the applications are integrated out-of-the-box and has necessary services to support inbound and outbound integration with customers other software to support customers vision of true enterprise SOA.

It has always been a long debate what is a good integration strategy for SOA enabled products. Organizations debate on whether to use the same service interfaces for inter-application and intra-application integrations. Intra-application integration have major challenges, especially for large organizations. Different stakeholders and owners need to work together to make sure that the applications are integrated out-of-the-box. It sounds obvious but it is not quite easy. In most cases it is a trade off between to be able to "eat your own dog food" by using the published interfaces versus optimizing performance by compromising the abstraction by having a different contract than inter-application integration. There are few hybrid approaches as well that fall between these two alternatives, but it is always a difficult choice. Most of the customers do not pay too much attention to the intra-application strategy, but it is still in the best interest of a vendor to promote, practice, and advocate service-based composition against ad-hoc integration. There are many ways to fine tune the runtime performance if at all this approach results into performance degradation.

The other critical factor for ROI is the interoperability. The internal service enablement doesnt necessarily have to be implemented as web services, but there is a lot of value in providing the standardized service endpoints that are essentially web services that have published WSDL and WS-I profile compliance. The interoperability helps customer with their integration efforts and establish trust and credibility into the vendors offerings. I have also seen customers associating interoperability with transparency. Not all the standards have matured in the area of Web Services and that makes it difficult for a vendor to comply to or to follow a certain set of standards, but at the minimum vendors can decide to follow the best practices and the standards that have matured.

Year II Week 50

My guy and I have weekly art nights, and keep art journals together. Read more about it here.

His:

Mine:

Windows 7 SP1 On its way Beta Leaks – Screenshots

Windows 7 SP1 has finally leaked and should be available in the usual areas soon for anyone who wants to give it a try.  I have gotten my hands on this build of SP1 and will show off a few shots for your viewing pleasure.

First off, this build is very recent, with a compile date of March 27th.  The full build string is as follows:
6.1.7601.16537.amd64fre.win7.100327-0053

The install process is much of what you would expect from a service pack installer, but one thing I noticed is the installation is MUCH faster than the install process for service packs on Vista was, which is a very welcome change.  Below are some screenshots from the installation process of Windows 7 SP1:

..

International Art Therapy Postcard Art Exchange

I finally finished my postcards for the Art Therapy Without Borders International Postcard Art Exchange (read more about this project here!) I originally saw this as a large series of artwork, and tried for it to be a cohesive series... But what ended up happening was several smaller series of artwork. I still think that it works and am glad that they will all be going to their new homes soon! My favorites were of the scribble animals as the reminded me to play with the art.

TweakNow Powerpack – advanced tweaking program

(Auto Shutdown – Allows you to set a timer to log off/shutdown/hibernate your computer.)

TweakNow PowerPack is a fully-integrated suite of utilities that let you fine-tune every aspect of your computers operating system and Web browser. The Registry Cleaner module provides you with a safe and simple way to clean Windows Registry. To keep your computer always at top performance, we recommend to clean your registry at least once a month. For Windows tweaking lovers, the suite provides more than 100 hidden Windows settings in the Windows Secret section. Using modules included in this section, you can easily customize your Windows like geeks do. The Virtual Desktop module lets you run as many as four custom-designed desktop configurations simultaneously, allowing you to tailor your computer screen to your mood and your work requirements.  Last but not least, the suite also gives you a complete picture of all aspects of your computers hardware, including detailed information about your motherboard, processor, video card, memory, hard disk and network.

Year II Week 17

My guy and I have weekly art nights, and keep art journals together. Read more about it here.