Agile Development, Business Analysis, Conference, Events, Information Technology, Innovation, Mobile, Product Development, Social business, User Experience

It’s with pride and happiness I wish to share with you that recently Team Texavi successfully hosted Texavi’s IMAGINEERING – INDIA, 2013 Conference. Held in two cities Hyderabad and Mumbai, during the last week of August, the events were a huge hit among the IT community.   The conference had a good participation from the practising and aspiring IT professionals who made it happen. Thanks to the enthusiastic participation of delegates and speakers, the conference in both cities had turned out as a big hit among the community. I salute the untiring efforts of  Team Texavi in putting together such fantastic events which many people hoped to be held every year . In this blogpost, I give a snapshot of the conference for the benefit of those who could not attend and also for those who participated. Hope this would help you all understand the magic behind this memorable event called Texavi’s IMAGINEERING – INDIA, 2013 Conference.

What’s special with Texavi’s IMAGINEERING

If you ask me the formula for the successful hosting of Texavi’s IMAGINEERING – INDIA, 2013 conference, it’s the PEOPLE that made it happen. Yes, right from the word go, Team Texavi had put in their brain power at work and ensured that the right topics were selected to ensure maximum interests among the audience. Next to contribute majorly were the speakers who are industry-leading thinkers and professionals. These are not just people who talk, but who are thought-leaders and those who actually put their ideas to work. Bringing this unique set of people who are hands-on lent practicality and workmanship to the focus areas. Through the talks, panel discussions, interactive Q & A sessions, these speakers brought out the best for the benefit of participants. And last but not the least, the prize also goes to participants from different organisations who made it to the event, despite it being a Friday. They all took an active part in the proceedings of the event and needless to say contributed to the success of the conference.

Texavi IMAGINEERING Conference_1 IMG_3803Dr.Rajeev_Srinivasa

What happened at IMAGINEERING 2013 Conference

The theme of the conference was very topical and relevant to the current times – “Technology trends, challenges and opportunities in the times of Digital. Mobile. Agile. Social“. The talks, special sessions, panel discussions and interactive sessions revolved around this topic with varied flavours. Ranging from the mundane Social media aspects to the raging hot theme of today’s technology world, Mobile platforms and applications, the conference had covered all the bases. The Keynote address by Dr. Rajeev Srinivasa rightly brought out the nuances and guidelines for embracing the good things around in Technology, highlighting the challenges involved. Dr. Srinivasa very eloquently touched upon the finer yet very practical aspects relevant for the IT community. A case in point is the importance of knowing the business aspects alongside the application of technology, for successfully delivering technology products and applications, today. Towards the end of the conference, everyone in the hall left with a firm belief that Technology and Business are two sides of the coin and that one can’t live without the other.

For all the action as it happened, you can watch the videos of the Conference, by clicking on the links below:

Interactive and engaging panel discussions

The keynote was followed by a very engaging panel discussion comprising some very competent and experienced professionals from the IT industry. The discussion for the panel was the topic “What’s the next BIG Thing”, which they ably covered sometimes hovering around, while other times diving deep into the key aspects. The panelists drew examples, business cases and insights from their own experiences to weigh in their points and delegates couldn’t have enough of the nectarine knowledge being shared with them. Sprinkled with generous doses of tips, tools, techniques and methodologies, the discussions threw light on important areas for the participants to take in all they could. The floor was opened for questions from the participants and it got so engaging that the session was brought to a halt by the time keepers. Texavi_IMAGINEERING_Panel_discussion_1 Audience participation at Texavi IMAGINEERING 2013

IMAGINEERING,2013 – A conference with a difference

Perhaps no other conference can boast of the unique feature that Texavi’s IMAGINEERING had – that of the focus on careers and professional development. Besides running as a deep undercurrent of all the items on the agenda, there were special sessions catered for the careers advancement and professional development of the IT community. Mukund Sathe’s engrossing talk on the IT industry’s trends and challenges struck the right chords with participants. Mukund’s talk was full of insights, ideas and recommended solutions and went beyond just highlighting the problems. Towards the end, participants with their questions and views made the talk even more insightful.  Not just that but also the careers talk from Texavi’s Niroop Racha was a huge hit among the audience. It started off as a solo talk but drawing audience’s participation, it slowly turned into a very engaging exercise. Delegates jumped in with their experiences, views and added the much needed “E flavour” to the conference. The E here stands for “Engagement” and “Entertainment” too, as it turned out that Texavi’s IMAGINEERING – INDIA, 2013 had no dearth of learning, sharing and fun.

Please check out the Presentations used during the Texavi’s IMAGINEERING, 2013 conference by clicking on the links below:

Hope you enjoyed reading the post. Please feel free to drop in with your valuable feedback as always. Till next time, have a nice time, ciao!

Behavior Modeling & Design, Business Analysis, Events, Information Technology, Innovation, Mobile, Product Development, User Experience

Look around you and what you find everywhere being used by almost everybody is no surprise. Yes, Mobile has taken us by storm and no doubt that its one of the most happening thing in the modern age. There are positive aspects and as some say, more negative effects to this Mobile revolution. From large global technology organisations to small, local startups  jumping on the bandwagon, Mobile has indeed become a potential mega-trend of the 21st century. As Mobile is fast becoming a pervasive, persuasive and personal technology choice, you might wonder what makes the Mobile tick and wish to know about the key ingredients behind its success. In this post, I will touch upon the things that make Mobile the most sought-after medium of communication and interaction in this day and age. Also of note is, this is one of the topics at Texavi’s IMAGINEERING – INDIA, 2013 conference to be hosted in Hyderabad and Mumbai, India in Aug,2013.

The Mobile Eco-system – Sum, not just parts

First, let us try and define what Mobile really means before we get any further. Is it the phone(device), the operating system that runs in it, the network that enables it or the apps that user? Well, its not just one or the other, but all of these and much more that make up the Mobile. There is no denying of the success of the Mobile platforms and the ubiquity of the smartphones that pushed the penetration and usage of Mobile. Also, the wide range of networking and communication technologies e.g., GSM, CDMA, Edge, 3G etc. make it a compelling case for the rapid build-up and penetration. And yes, you can’t also discount the sudden impetus provided by the affordable Mobile apps. So, it’s the sum-total of all the components in the eco system that have contributed to the success of Mobile. I present this view in a graphic below to sum up the components that make up this Mobile eco-system.

TheMobileEcoSystem_Texavi

Pervasive – Anywhere, anytime…

The biggest driving factor for the success of Mobile is its ability for being pervasive. It is this anytime, anywhere, the always on and always accessible aspect of Mobile that contributed big time to its wide spread usage all over the world. The portable form factor of the device, the supporting communication networks all make it a really pervasive technology. There is no question that the powerful combination of the Mobile platform, networks, devices and apps make it virtually anytime, anywhere.Also,increasingly the ubiquitous Mobile apps have only added to the pervasive nature of Mobile. I have put together a diagram (shown below) to depict the positives, not so positives and the neutral aspects of the Mobile, as we see them today.

Mobile_Pervasive_persuasive_personal_Texavi_final

Persuasive – Why Mobile makes it compelling

From the school student to the retired grand parents, Mobile has found its place in the hands of almost everybody. It doesn’t require a certain person with specific education, work experience, technology-savviness and employment credibility to start using Mobile. The beauty of the Mobile is its appeal to one and all, irrespective of the background, potential or skills. With the later generations of the Mobile devices, improvement of the networking technology, and the availability of the applications, Mobile has picked up momentum.  Increasingly, with time and over the generations of the Mobile devices and technologies, its not getting just easy to use  for the existing users, but also easy to learn to use for the new users.

Personal and private – From possessive to hazardous

During the late 80’s the PC came in and conquered the whole world, making the computers personal. Then came the block/brick phones as I they were popularly referred to.  Slowly the Mobiles have reached far and wide across the world and now it wouldn’t be an exaggeration to say that some are not happy with just one Mobile at their disposal. With a wide choice of devices, platforms and networks available to the consumers, Mobile is definitely getting more personal and personalised. From details of the contacts, official and personal eMails, chats and conversations, photos and videos, Mobiles have virtually become your second personae. Aside all these positives, there is also the potential hazards to privacy and security of personal data.

Wearable Technology  – Wear it on your sleeve

Besides the personal and portable aspects of Mobile, in the last couple years, wearable technology has been placed in the same league as 3D Printing. From the much-touted smart watches to the small fitness devices which one can carry on them, there has been a surge in the wearable technologies. Move over the Bluetooth-enabled ear-pieces, Mobile phones are now acquiring a new meaning of wearability. These come in different shapes and sizes ranging from the smart watches and fitness devices such as Fitbit, Jawbone Up and Nike Fuel, wearable technology is now coming of age. Mobile is only powering this wearable technology revolution and we might see more interesting use cases in the near future.

sony-smartwatch-android-watch

As you would have noticed, what I have mentioned above is merely touching the surface and there is more to Mobile than meets the eye. To get a detailed perspective, come join us at the Texavi’s IMAGINEERING – INDIA, 2013 Conference to be hosted in Hyderabad and Mumbai in Aug, 2013. Until next post, ciao!

Agile Development, Behavior Modeling & Design, Business Analysis, Events, Information Technology, Innovation, Product Development, Social business, User Experience

Disrupt, hack, fail and lean…in case you are wondering what these are, they are the latest buzzwords in the technology industry today. No more terms with a negative tone or tinge, these once swear words are now the tech world’s definitive words to swear by. They have taken the world by storm, so no wonder businesses and individuals alike are encouraged to embrace them strongly. Rightly so, in an age of digital, mobile, agile and social times that we are living in, technology does have a profound impact on businesses and people. Change is the only constant thing, and entrepreneurship and innovation are sure ways for survival and success. In this blogpost, in a run-up to Texavi’s IMAGINEERING – INDIA,2013 conference, I will touch upon how embracing the mean and lean aspects like disruption,”fail-early-fail-often”, hacker way and being lean will separate the winners from players.

1. What are you disrupting today

Look around you and you will find disruption as the mantra behind every successful business, product, service or individual. For instance, in the technology space, the Internet and web sites and applications came and disrupted the way we work, play and talk. Google came in and disrupted the way we deal with information changing the preferred navigation mode of millions of people from browsing to searching. Apple’s iPhone and other Touch-sensitive  technologies disrupted the way we interact with phones and devices. Plastic money a.k.a credit cards came in and changed the purchase behaviours of people, which some would argue, in a negative way. With the technology powering the businesses, brace yourself for more disruption to happen in the near future. From wearable technologies to 3D printing and alternative currency, disruption is the name of the game. Disruption is not only the key differentiating factor but also the secret weapon that separates the great ones from good.

bitcoin

It is equally important if not more important, for the large well-established organisations to be disruptive as much as the small, suave start-ups. Large organisations such as Google, Apple, 3M and McDonalds continuously strive at disrupting the professional and personal lives of their customers leaving a huge impact, through their new products, services and business models. Small start-ups too are doing their bit to help disrupt the existing behaviours of consumers. Take the case of Bitcoin which is a startup wanting to disrupt the way people use currencies, although some people consider it a cheeky option. Over the last 5 years or so, Bitcoin has emerged as a new alternative for payment online. Similarly, David Fishwick’s Burnley Savings and Loans Limited has been pitched as disrupting the models of the high street banks. Yes, disruption is the name of the game today and anyone who would like to make it big in business must have the answer to the question What are you disrupting today? In fact, this is the question every business and start-up must ask for themselves, not only to survive but also make a mark in this world of cut-throat competition.

 

2. Fail fast and fail often

Failure has never been more recognised and more encouraged than now. The importance of failure was best brought out by the famous saying of Thomas Alva Edison, “I have not failed. I have just found 10,000 ways that won’t work”. Failure is the stepping stone for success and nobody who has succeeded wouldn’t have done it without ever tasting a slice of failure earlier. Behind every successful entrepreneur, you can find a string of failed initiatives and this applies equally well in the case of the technology businesses and products too. I don’t mean in any way that we all must have failure as our goal, but what is important is to be prepared for failure, often to the extent of keeping it as option A. This would help ensure that you cover all the possible scenarios. Also, when you fail, you are bound to become battle-hardened because with failure, you know what works and more importantly what doesn’t work.

Fail fast, fail often_texavi

It may seem that I am all for hailing failing, but the important bit is to recognise the need to fail early. Failing early on helps us to correct the course quicker and better. It will also help us in preparing to prevent similar instances or occurrences in the future. Failing earlier is better than failing quite later down the line, as the impact would have been lesser as also the resources required to for corrective action. Failing often is also a key step in the journey of progression and success as that shows the continuous endeavour and effort for improvement.

3. Adopt the Hacker way

Times are gone when people want to do things in a linear, bureaucratic and often long-winding manner. From venture capitalists to employers and financial markets, everyone nowadays insists on street-smart, tech savvy and ingenious attitudes on display. In a world where the boundaries between work and play are being constantly erased, what one needs is the ability to make a killing with speed, accuracy and confidence. One word to describe all of these and more is HACKER. Yes, hackers, at least in the context of IT industry, are your new battle-ready warriors who are the new age ninjas to pump up the productivity, profits and products’s successes through their shrewd, speed and solid work.

Hacking - brilliant idea

Hacking is not evil anymore, well if done with the right intent and intentions. It used to be often associated with young, smart brains turned in the wrong direction a la snooping. In the context of this post, I am referring to hacking in a slightly different skill – that of “doing” rather than relying on lengthy debates and futile processes. When Facebook went for the IPO, we got to know one of the secrets for their sustained success, which is The Hacker Way. Hacking in this sense is not about snooping, but it is the ability to quickly conceptualise, design, develop and test a product or feature quickly  and iteratively. So, there is no two ways in embracing the hacker way to deliver and turn around successful products, services and concepts quicker and more effectively.

4. Lean is in, are you ready

Building huge monoliths of businesses had been the key focus in the last few decades where power and might took precedence over everything else. Excess drive was on to build up the industrial mega-revolution making things bigger, mightier and powerful without consideration for the effectiveness, efficiency and long-term sustainability. However, as technology led from the front in the last couple years, businesses realised that its not the size and strength that matters, but efficiency and productivity on a sustainable basis. So, lean is in and started to impact various industries from manufacturing to IT. Going agile and being lean is not in processes alone, but must be replicated in people and other resources too.

Be_nimble_and_lean_TEXAVI

I shall touch upon each of these topics in greater detail in the upcoming blogposts. Please drop in with your feedback for further improvements and yes, you can also share some ideas for new topics. Have a nice time and until the next post, ciao!

 

Agile Development, Business Analysis, Conference, Events, Information Technology, Innovation, Mobile, Product Development, Social Technologies, User Experience, User-centered Design

I am both happy and proud to announce the launch of Texavi’s IMAGINEERING conference. As part of the IMAGINEERING series of events, Team Texavi is hosting the IMAGINEERING – INDIA, 2013 conferences in India. The theme for this year’s event is Technology trends, challenges and opportunities in the times of Digital. Mobile. Agile. Social. The conference will have talks, panel discussions, special sessions, exercises, activities, fun and more. We have got a great lineup of eminent speakers on our elite panel, leaders who have been there, done that in the IT industry. This year, we are hosting the conference in Hyderabad on Friday, 23rd Aug,2013 and in Mumbai on Friday, 30th Aug 2013. In this blogpost, I will touch upon the motivation and bring into fore a few facts about the upcoming Texavi’s IMAGINEERING – INDIA, 2013 conference. Hope these will help in making a strong case and encourage you to be part of the event.

1. What is this conference all about

Texavi's IMAGINEERING - Main Theme

The IMAGINEERING – INDIA, 2013 is a conference for the  IT community organised by the IT community. It focuses on the topics and issues  that matter for IT professionals. The theme of the conference this year is Technology trends, challenges and opportunities in the times of Digital. Mobile. Agile. Social. We are living in an ever-changing world full of digitised and increasingly portable solutions. As they say change is the only constant thing, now more than ever, we have a need to be prepared, respond and manage change in a more effective and efficient manner. And then there is no denying that going social (and using the popular social and professional networks) is not an option anymore, for businesses and individuals too. So, it can safely be argued that the IMAGINEERING conference dwells on the most important, current and pertinent topics and issues for the IT community.

2. Theme and focus areas

With environment-friendly, cost-effective and accessible solutions, the digital, mobile, agile and social solutions are having a significant impact on the way we live, work and relate to each other. They help shape up and make us better equipped to face the ever-changing world. However,alongside the opportunities and benefits, these also bring forth numerous challenges in the form of intrusion into privacy, potential risks to health, hazards to the future generations of humankind and the long term impact on the sustainability of our Planet Earth. There is no better time and place to pause and ponder about these, than at the IMAGINEERING – INDIA, 2013 conference.

 

Texavi_IMAGINEERING_Themes

 

3. Who is the IMAGINEERING conference for

Texavi’s IMAGINEERING  – INDIA, 2013 is a compelling platform targeted for all the experienced, young and aspiring IT professionals in India. From the core IT workforce i.e., developers, analysts, designers and testers to the managers of projects, products and processes, IMAGINEERING 2013 caters to the needs and goals of the Indian IT professionals. The conference has everything you needed and more…from speeches by leaders to panel discussions, from career camps to contests, from interactive exercises to fun games and from useful insights and snippets to great takeaways. With all these interesting and useful programmes, rest assured the IMAGINEERING – INDIA, 2013 conference packs quite a punch!

Texavi's IMAGINEERING - Who should attend

 

4. What makes IMAGINEERING – INDIA, 2013 so compelling

There are a host of things that makes the IMAGINEERING – INDIA, 2013 conference unmissable for the IT professionals. Great line-up of speakers, fantastic panels formed of eminent and prominent IT professionals, current and topical themes are just a few reasons urging you to be there. Besides these, we have planned some really cool, interactive,  informational and entertaining programmes to keep the participants engaged and glued to their seats. Alongside the physical takeaways of swag bags filled with usable goodies, the participants will have great insights and ideas to take away, relish and cherish even long after the event. The conferences will be hosted at centrally located and accessible venues with state-of-the-art facilities. Also, the registration process is kept really simple and straight-forward so that you join us quickly and without any fuss. And last but not the least, the ticket price is kept very competitive so that we get as many people as possible. These are but a few good reasons for you to sign-up for the event, at the earliest.

5. A glimpse at the programme

I am giving below a peep into the package and coverage of the conference. Of course, this is neither full nor final but it’s enough to give you an idea of what the IMAGINEERING – INDIA, 2013 will have. Needless to say, the event is packed with the right mix of programmes, topics and people to offer the participants an enriching and rewarding experience. These are all presented in interesting and engaging formats ranging from talks, panel discussions, exercises, games and fun activities. The whole event is focused on IT professionals and so obviously we have quite a few programmes on the careers such as job hunting support and career camps. I mention here a few topics that we have already identified that form the crux of the IMAGINEERING – INDIA, 2013 conference.

  • What’s the next BIG thing? Advantage IT! A peep into the future of technology and technologies of future!
  • Pervasive, persuasive and personal! How mobile devices and apps are shaping up our world!
  • It’s a connected, changing and shrinking world! Blending technology, people and business for success!
  • Past Perfect. Present Tense. Future­­ ??? Trends, challenges and opportunities in the IT industry
  • Designed in India. Made in the USA! Paradigm shifts impacting the IT industry and community
  • From Promise to Profit! Prioritising is key with the 3 PROs – Products, processes and projects!

Hope this post helps in setting the stage for the upcoming IMAGINEERING – INDIA, 2013 conference. Keep a watch on this blog for more interesting and insightful posts on the themes, topics and focus areas of the event. Until next post, ciao!

 

 

 

 

 

Agile Development, Business Analysis, Conference, Events, Information Technology, Innovation, Mobile, Social business, Social Technologies, User Experience, User-centered Design

I have this question constantly coming back to me and kept playing in my mind time and again. What makes a great product? What is it that creates successful brand, organisation or an individual? After thinking about it from all possible experiences and view points, I finally came to a conclusion. The answer came to my mind when I applied myself to various scenarios, situations,industries and domains. Yes, I found the answer!!! It is balance. I would like to use this connotation of balance to bring forth the importance of IMAGINEERING in our professional and personal lives. In this post, I wish to bring to you the meaning and potential of IMAGINEERING, as a run-up to Texavi’s upcoming conference IMAGINEERING – INDIA, 2013 in August this year.

Imagination is a natural instinct

They say that “Imagination takes you everywhere!”, how true! Yes, with the very mind that we have we can create and weave bundles of thoughts. These indeed can take us places and sitting in London, we can go to Miami or Mumbai. Of course, this same imagination makes us travel across time as well, from the present to the past and lets us dream peep into the  future too, in the form of dreams. This greatest power especially found in abundance in young children, is responsible to make us curious, enthusiastic, inquisitive and exciting. This adds the much-needed zing to our lives, which otherwise gets mundane and monotonous. Though not entirely related, imagination could be mapped to the emotional part of the human instincts.

Logic is critical for growth

But then the next question could be “is imagination everything that you  need?”. Well, the answer to this question is a resounding “NO”. It is important to have imagination, but its not just enough. We need logic to back up the emotional appeal, analysis should be the engine that should drive the vehicle forward. Intellect powers the development of human beings and it is the constant churning of WHY and HOW that leads us in the right path to reach the right goal quickly. Its logic that lends support to the otherwise fragile and weak facade of imagination. I would even say that logic and analytical bent of mind provides the string and controls the high-flying kite of imagination.

Imagineering – the true meaning

Having looked at both imagination and logic, by now you would agree with me that we need to make the best of both worlds. To get it right with anything in the world, from building a product to a creating a powerful brand, and from taking an individual from good to great, we need to strike the right balance between balance between imagination and engineering. In the context of developing successful products and services, imagineering, as I refer to it, could be the powerful combination of technology and business.  Whereas in the case of building a brand, balance should be between identity and image of that brand. And in the case of an individual’s personality development, what helps the most is the right balance between left and right brains, or rather harmony between heart and mind.

Why is Imagineering powerful

Simply put, if we take a case of a problem and solution, we need to balance imagination with engineering and that’s what I would refer to as Imagineering, a powerful combination of creativity and logic. I didn’t coin this term though, but found out that this terms was copyrighted by Disney. What one needs today in the world of me-too products is the clear differentiation whose value-add can be clearly seen by your customers and users. While both are equally important to create any product or solution, sometimes Imagination precedes Engineering while in other times vice-versa. What is more important and more prioritised between the two of these, depends on the factors like…

  • Stage in the life cycle
  • Availability of resources
  • Personality and/or mental makeup of the people concerned
  • Business drivers

Digital. Mobile.Agile.Social times

There have been umpteen instances in our careers and personal lives, where the digital, mobile, agile and social aspects have been influencing us either directly or indirectly. These are playing a significant role in the way we live, work, interact, connect and communicate with our customers, family members, friends and followers. I penned my thoughts, views and ideas about the web of influence these 4 themes have on our lives. The diagram below depicts in a sense the various meanings, influences, challenges and opportunities posed by the quartet of Digital, Mobile,Agile and Social.

Texavi's IMAGINEERING conf theme

 

Texavi’s IMAGINEERING – INDIA, 2013 Conference

I take this opportunity to announce Texavi’s conference IMAGINEERING – INDIA, 2013. The theme for this year’s conference is “Technology trends, challenges and opportunities in the times of Digital. Mobile. Agile. Social”. We have good 3 months for the conference, but Team Texavi have started the planning and preparations are in full swing. We have a fantastic lineup of speakers for the conference, and the agenda has been shaping up  pretty nice. I will share more details on the IMAGINEERING – INDIA, 2013 conference in the coming days. As a teaser, I present to you the logo of the IMAGINEERING – INDIA,2013 conference. This logo is the result of the hard work by the team, putting their mind, heart, and soul into creating something splendid and I must say the outcome has been a pleasing experience.

Texavi IMAGINEERING-INDIA, 2013 Conference Logo

 

As a run up to the Texavi’s IMAGINEERING – INDIA,2013 conference, I will be writing more posts in the next few weeks. Watch out for more details not just on the conference, but also around the related themes and perhaps some guest posts too. As always, keep writing and share your feedback. Till next time, ciao!

Behavior Modeling & Design, Conference, Events, Information Technology, Social business, Social Technologies, User Experience

“Social media is not an option for businesses, any more!” and “Markets are conversations” – these phrases pretty much reverberated among the speakers, visitors and organisations participating in the Social Media World Forum-2012, London. Held over 2-days at Olympia, London from 27-28 March, the conference reiterated the importance and urgency of socialisation of business, marketing and media. Great ambience, pleasant crowds, nice talks on current topics, insightful panel discussions and 1000’s of tweets buzzing the twitterwall….the #SMWF ( as it is popularly referred to) was a great place to be for businesses and professionals alike! Texavi took an active part this year, exhibiting at the event, by setting up a booth and demonstrating our capabilities. During the 2 days, Texavi’s stand received good visitors and the feedback during and after the event had been very encouraging. For photos and more updates on the #SMWF, visit Texavi’s web site and our Facebook Page.

SMWF London 2012 - Texavi exhibits at Social Media World Forum     Texavi exhibits at #SMWF 2012, London

Active participation from businesses and individuals

SMWF 2012 was well attended by businesses and people from all around Europe and a few from parts of Asia as well. Focusing on the core theme of social media, the conference catered to five streams — Social business, social TV, social shopping, mobile marketing and of course, social media. Besides the well-decorated and themed booths spread across the entire hall, there were workshops, talks, and panel discussions on the five streams. The topics for these workshops and talks were carefully chosen, ranging from the ubiquitous Facebook-focused marketing to the semantic analysis, and the more strategic aspects of brand management and social business enablement. For more information on the event, you can visit the official site.

Talk at SMWF  Interesting presentation at SMWF  Conversations at SMWF

Texavi @SMWF,2012

Texavi is proud and happy to have been associated with the SMWF this year. We set up a booth and exhibited our offerings to the visitors who showed keen interest. The visitors to Texavi’s stand no.10 were both excited and impressed by what we had got on the show. Participating in SMWF proved to be a good decision for Texavi as we got to meet some really nice people and had interesting inquiries. Texavi’s offerings stood out among the exhibiting lot, because of our unique, simple yet powerful frameworks. Out of the very few organisations focusing on the most important aspects for social business enablement, Texavi’s   unified and convergent experience framework and behaviour change and persuasion framework struck the right chords among the enthusiastic participants. For the brochures that we gave away at the booth, you can visit Texavi’s Downloads page. 

Booth at SMWF 2012  Visitors at Texavi's stand No.10 in SMWF

What’s special at SMWF2012

The main attraction of the event had been a specially built Twitterwall right in the centre of the venue, with a continual stream of the tweets about and around the topics of the event. This worked almost like a live heartbeat of the buzz going around in the event. Even though it was early Spring, the sunny weather outside did make people hang out at the bar lounge right in the centre which kept the conversations going. There was a special gaming zone where people could get their hands dirty with the latest and the most entertaining games. The workshops and talks were held at the specially set-up theatres in the corners to streamline the participants. Add to that the special attraction at SMWF was the messaging facility, for those tired after going around the stands and attending the workshops.

Lounge at SMWF  Gaming zone at SMWF Tweet board at SMWF

Key takeaways from #SMWF

As you would have guessed by now, SMWF helped participants with the right information, insights and networking opportunities. Though there are many a takeaway from the conference, I am attempting to do the impossible task of summarising the key points, below.

  • Social media and social marketing are not an option anymore for businesses
  • Social media is not just the responsibility of marketing /PR departments
  • Markets are conversations
  • Brands can reach out to their customers and leverage their reputation, thanks to social media
  • Gibson Guitars, Lego bricks are cases in point to show how big brands can be more effective when they get social

Hope you enjoyed reading this post. Please feel free to click through the links I provided all through, for more interesting photos, updates and information. Also, do drop in your feedback for making Texavi blog better. Until next post, ciao!

 

Business Analysis, Business Case, Events, User Experience

Another dose of ‘wholesome entertainment experience’ with loads of fun, fanfare, dance, music, celebrities and of course, Cricket comes to an end. The  season 3 of the Indian Premier League (IPL) had its share of sporting action, larger-than-life celebrity supporters, franchises, owners, and add to these, the controversies to top them all. Along with all these, it also gave a lot of sleepless nights to the people who matter. I too had my share of late night sleeps, of course, for a different reason. I used to wake up till 11.45 pm all these days to watch the matches.

I will leave the analysis of the cricketing sport and spirit to the cricket pundits and sportsmen and the controversies et al to the media.  That spares me enough material to focus on the ‘experience’ aspect of the IPL. In a nutshell, I think IPL experience = function of (business, fun, films, dance and music, politics, cricket), though need not be in that specific order.

It is not about cricket

I am sure this thought would have crossed your mind when you were watching the  matches, reading news or watching the Television. Yes, it is true that IPL is about Cricket, it involves Cricket players who play Cricket on the cricket grounds and organised by Cricket authorities.  The association of the tournament with Cricket ends there. Whoever named the tournament, IPL had made sure this argument is true. There is no mention of Cricket anywhere in the word IPL or the expansion of the term. It has caught on the lives of Indians and perhaps a lot of other cricket enthusiasts in the World. The fact that IPL 3 matches were broadcast ‘live’  on YouTube (well, not exactly ‘live’, there was a lag of about 10 minutes), mobile phones and in Cinema Theatres in India, proves that there had been a huge following and it virtually became a life-line for some people. So, let us look at what makes up IPL, if it is not just about cricket.

Success factors

Though there could be many things that could have contributed to the huge success of IPL 3, I attribute the following as some of the major factors to make it a hit:

  • Emotional card – IPL is back in India after almost 2  years (season 2 was played out of home, in South Africa in 2009)
  • Complete and active participation of all Indian cricketers – including retired players (there is no ‘for’ or ‘against’ camps – all players took part in this tourney)
  • Strong industry support for the event – business houses and marketing agencies, large and small took part (include the franchises)
  • Optimal coverage and updates by electronic and print media – Television channels, Web sites and Newspapers &  magazines
  • Good weather for playing cricket – No match was cancelled due  to rain or poor visibility
  • Perfect timing of the match plays – 4 pm and 8 pm (after office/school hours, when it gets maximum viewership)

Marketers’ gold rush

I assume that the event would have been watched by 40% of the people in India, that still makes a good 40 million minds to occupy the space in, for the businesses. With so many eyeballs glued to the television and newspapers and ears keyed in on AM and FM Radios, I am sure no business would want to miss this bus. Rightly so, the huge opportunity was lapped up by companies big and small, old and new alike… companies selling mobile phones or motor cycles, liquor or lemon drinks, FMCG or white goods, all cashed in on the IPL wave to reach out to their target markets.

Forget the sponsors and partners, even businesses which had no direct relationship started riding on the IPL wave.  I remember seeing the buzz created by a white goods selling store, offering a hefty discount on the goods purchased that day, if Mumbai Indians team won the match played on the following day.

What’s in it for us – the experience!

Americans love Basketball and American Football and they have NBA and NPL. Europeans love Soccer and Formula One and they have Euro Cup and F1 races. Indians love Cricket and IPL was born to satiate their passion!  In the absence of any major regular sporting tournament in India, IPL turned out to be the ambrosia in the cricket-crazy nation. Besides this, the IPL offered a plethora of experiential factors that made it a hugely successful phenomenon in the sub-continent. All of the factors mentioned below are inter-connected and have a bearing on one another.

Bonding  with family and friends. I have seen parents, couples and children all in front of the Tellies and cheering for their teams. This is not just restricted to personal lives, but IPL touched work lives too. I had seen Organisations holding contests and sending the winning teams to watch the games. Also, project teams and people working in the same department get together to plan and watch the match. All these help develop bonding amongst the people.

Diversity in Unity. Though there is a bit of cultural misfit with the non-local cheer-leaders, I think some of the matches had a good dose of display of  Indian traditions and culture. You could watch some spectators wearing local traditional attire playing the local musical instruments or performing regional flavours of dance.

Belongingness. There had been a sense of belongingness which the people had towards the teams and this was sufficiently leveraged by the marketers.  The merchandise  of the teams such as jerseys, sporting gear, accessories et al were sold like hot cakes. Need a proof for this? I too bought a Mumbai Indians jersey on the day of the final match between Mumbai and Chennai. Of course, I don’t want to share with you how I felt at the end of the match, when Mumbai Indians lost to Chennai Super Kings.

Love for Regional / local flavours. Thanks to the formation of teams, based on the different regions or states, there has been a sense of rekindling of love for one’s region or state. Often, this  added to the lighter side of India’s diversity. For instance, I was born in Vijayawada, studied in Hyderabad and Puttaparthi, worked in Bangalore and Chennai and settled in Mumbai. These are all from four different states, where different languages are spoken and differ on the traditions and cuisines as well. This only made me confused if I should support my settled home Mumbai or my original home, Hyderabad in a match, where they played each other. My case is rather simple, I had a friend who has links to 8 different states and he thoroughly enjoyed each match in the IPL tournament.

Not so good things

Timing of the tournament was not just right for students. Many of the secondary and junior college students have their annual final and board examinations around March and April, every year. By keeping the IPL during this time, students could not but face the pressure but more so parents of these students too faced the problems.

Marketing was a bit overdone in a few cases. Every six hit by batsman in the match is a ‘DLF Maximum’ six, every catch a ‘Karbonn kamaal catch’, as announced by the commentators.  They had done it to the extent that sometimes, it started annoying the viewers. For instance, the continual beaming and talking of the MRF blimp on air, is a real irritant, no matter how much important MRF is to the IPL organisers.

Anything in excess is dangerous and so with cricket too. The teams had too many matches to play against one another and the 45-day long tournament could have left the players tired and perhaps bored with too much cricket!

Conference, Events, User Experience, User Testing

EuroSTAR is a prestigious software testing conference organised every year. This year, it will be held at Copenhagen, Denmark in December, 2010 and I am participating on behalf of Rave Technologies. I will present a real life case study to highlight the importance of comprehensive testing for a software product. The theme of my talk is going to be comprehensive software testing that also involves ‘users’ at regular phases in the software product development cycle. Besides the usual testing such as functional, performance and load testing, I think the real acid test for a software product is the user testing. This completes and consolidates all the other tests, and ensures that the product delivers a complete experience and brings in delight to its users.

When the rubber meets the road

I wish to equate software products and web applications in the ICT industry  to cars in the Automobile industry. Recently, there have been a spate of car recalls happening all over the World today. This includes the so-called quality-conscious companies such as Toyota and Honda. I am not an expert on the Auto-industry and so cannot comment on the real reasons behind these increasing recalls. However, as an end user, I presume that perhaps these could be due to the lack of appropriate,sufficient and comprehensive testing.  Also, the frequency and intensity with which the tests are carried out makes a significant impact on the quality of the final product. Besides all types of testing that we usually do on a software product or application, we should also perform  ‘user testing’ at regular periods in the project timeline. This will help us get closer to the user’s and usage scenarios, their problems and address them before the products actually get in the hands of users.

All you need to do is…

You can find the list of all the 14 videos which are submitted for this conference at the URL given below. Please go through this page, watch video 8 – Pardha Saradhi and vote for it. It is very simple and quick. Hurry up, the voting ends on April 16th. Every vote counts!

http://www.eurostarconferences.com/content/videostar-competition.aspx

Happy Easter and a long weekend. Ciao!