Monday, January 12, 2009

New Approach for Demo Videos

Infostrat has always been a nimble company, but from my perspective we are becoming more nimble even as we are growing. Perhaps it's just the new pace of innovation in cyberspace, the web community or whatever it's called these days.

In the past we would write books about our favorite technology topics. It was a great way to learn products in depth and to validate our credentials for clients and prospects. Unfortunately, the publishing world has been in a tailspin for years, and readers seem to have abandoned books for shorter and more immediate forms.

Then we turned to white papers, trying to keep them below twenty-five pages for easier consumptions. This has been a good approach, and people seem to enjoy them, but now I'm concerned that the white paper is becoming as dated as a newspaper or a book.

Next we turned to videos. Our first videos were long, scripted affairs which walked through a demonstration step by step, with detailed explanations. Again, customers seem to enjoy them but I think attention spans demand something even smaller and tastier.

Therefore, here is the latest incarnation of our video demonstration. We have eliminated the voiceover and replaced it with text in the video, along with a jazzy soundtrack.




Is this the future? Do you like it better? Let me know at with an email to jimt@infostrat.com or leave a comment here.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

New Years Resolutions for 2009

I hereby resolve to not make any resolutions for New Years 2009. On a long drive, I heard a radio show featuring positive thinking and related psychobabble. It was on XM and I think it may have been someone in the Oprah orbit.

Anyway, the radio psychologist argued that New Years resolutions can do more harm than good. The reason is that they become too drastic to continue, and once the resolution is broken the resolver throws out the entire idea and ends up worse than before.

For instance, resolving to exercise every day or eat at least five vegetables each day are good ideas, but I'm not likely to achieve them one hundred percent of the time. Today, for instance, I walked to work and then left a piece of tasty pizza behind at lunch. These were good things to do but I will not be doing them each day.

What does this mean for government information technology? Well, most government agencies do not operate based on promises made at late night parties. I recommend that you find small ways to make your information technology healthier. For instance:
  1. Try something new. Take a look at commercial technology that is new to you. If you're a PC person, visit the Apple store and look at the latest Mac. Check out someone else's cell phone at your next meeting.
  2. Join a virtual community. Find organizations that share your interests and values and find out what you can gain from online communities.
  3. Stop the madness. If you have a project that is going nowhere, blow the whistle and take a time out. Reassess whether it can be reoriented to make more sense.
Can I keep my resolution not to make resolutions? Only time will tell.