At the beginning of the year, I wrote an article about how R&B superstar Beyonce stunned everyone by launching her album without any prior notice or fanfare. Together with the songs, she offered her fans music videos for every one of her tracks. In fact, she offered more than that. All together she released 17 videos for 14 songs. The tactic worked like a charm and her album shot to No. 1. When you think about it, innovation like this is not too surprising coming from a contemporary artiste like Beyonce, who is young, hip and savvy. But you would not expect it from a veteran artiste like Weird Al Yankovic, whose first big hit, Eat It, was released 30 years ago!
That data analysis could be used to improve a sports team’s performance was highlighted in the baseball book Moneyball by Michael Lewis, which was made into a movie starring Brad Pitt. But although such statistical analysis involved using computers it wasn’t what you’d call “Big Data”.
Earlier this year I wrote about the benefits of telecommuting. In that article, I wrote about how firms can benefit from allowing some of their employees to work from home. Although working largely from home and occasionally visiting the office is still a relatively rare concept amongst local companies, it’s actually a mild form of telecommuting. Some people actually telecommute between countries.
As someone who telecommutes, having the right gadgets and devices to do work on the go is something crucial to me. Most of the time, I’ll go to a Starbucks or some café which has comfortable tables and chairs, electrical power point outlets and free Wi Fi. That gives me much of what I need to get some serious work done.
The phrase “open source” probably conjures up the name Linux, an open source operating system for personal computers. Or perhaps Android, the open source phone operating system. You might even think of the Malaysian Public Sector Open Source Software Masterplan that calls for the widespread adoption of open source applications across government departments.