It was our leader in nation building, the Minister for Science and Innovation et al, Steven Joyce, who said: “You don’t just have money, a bunch of scientists, stir, and ‘voila’, an innovative thing occurs.”
But surely every recipe for success requires good ingredients?
And while the end result could turn out in one of three ways - tasty, undercooked or overwrought – it’s important to get it right at the pre-Alpha stage.
This week Fry Up takes a look at the raw materials of three ICT projects currently in the oven.
Ingredients: Spectrum, Regulator, Money, Fighting attitude
John Stanton, whose company Trilogy Partners is the majority owner in 2degrees, was in the country this week. He’s the US billionaire who made a mint on wireless networks in America and around the world. He used to chat with Steve Jobs about replacing the carriers, and having the iPhone operate on its own network built on the Wi-Fi spectrum.
In his speech to the American Chamber of Commerce in Wellington yesterday he made the New Zealand mobile market sound like a sandpit. With big old Vodafone cast as the kindergarten bully picking on the new kid.
“You still need a referee when the other guy doesn’t play fair,” he said referring to the regulator. “There may come a time when we're all big enough, bad enough and tough enough to look after ourselves and then we won’t need the referee.”
Ingredients: Fast networks, Analytic skills, Vendor speak
We have, to quote The Carpenters, “only just begun” with Big Data. According to EMC country manager Phil Patton, it offers plenty of opportunities for every business - from the corner dairy to the giant search engines. But Big Data demands a skill set that the average IT department may not have. It needs, to quote Patton, “a statistician on steroids”.
Apple world domination
Ingredients: Revolutionary products, Envious media strategy, Inability to count
Apple released its new iPad, or New iPad, this week and everyone blathered away about it – fancy new screen, faster processor, super duper camera.
Apple is calling the upgrade “Resolutionary” – which is more cheesy than fruity.
We probably don’t mind that they didn’t call it ‘iPad 3’, because they conditioned us with the iPhone 4S not to expect it – but you know, it’s starting to look like those fellas at Apple are reluctant to keep counting. That maybe there are no revolutionary changes to these products which have been out in front for so long.
Fry Up has just consulted PC World editor Zara Baxter, who thinks about this stuff way too much (also it’s her job) and she reckons the change is a 2.5 rather than a fully fledged 3. Also, she thinks that Apple wants to brand both the iPad and iPhone as just that – products without numbers. The advantage being that people (like her probably) won’t focus on the specs and nit pick about stuff like whether they are good enough.
So maybe the changes from now on will be incremental. And that’s fine, the competitors will catch up and the whole world domination thing that Apple was maybe hoping for, won’t happen.
Ingredients of a different kind