Performancing Metrics

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Celebrate With Us

     Well, according to Google it is national small business week.  This is good for Digital Fruit, and for my wife and me, because it seems to be giving us opportunities for extra exposure to the media.  Google and the US Small Business Administration have developed a website with resources to help out small businesses.  This has pointed me in the right direction to get some help with developing this apartment operation into something at least a little bigger.  And thanks everyone for your posts about the idea I proposed for our business plan.  All of these are reasons to be celebrating.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Putting Out Ideas For Business Plans

     I know at this point that my customer base is small, and that the viewership on this blog is smaller, but I've decided go out on a limb and try to get feed back from customers.  I'm trying to best find a way to combat the eventuality of inflation.  I don't want to have to suddenly increase my prices and drive away customers.
     So, as I was thinking about this today, I figured that I would try just raising the prices of all tech services by a dollar a year.  Just one dollar.  Enough to start making a difference in income, but not enough that it will bother customers.
     I realize that this idea may need adjustment, which is why I'm asking for the input of Digital Fruits customers and concerned parties.  So, if you have any ideas, post some comments.  Ideas are always welcome.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

The Silent Monopoly

     It's seems that the world of technology can't resist the creation of megalithic giants.  With Microsoft starting to fade into the background, though, many companies are eager to step up and take their place.  The most likely candidate:  Google.
     Google seems to be purchasing up everything they can get their hands on that relates to computing services.  They also seem intent on providing their customers with the most comprehensive collection of software solutions they can give away for free.
    But it also seems they are stooping to the old low of killing off their competition by buy-out, not out-sell.  That's the problem with providing everything you create for free.  If you aren't in it for the benefit of mankind, you have a hard time competing with your opponent.  So Google has just bought out the company that licenses the software void engine that their competitors use for IM clients.  Now Yahoo!, AOL, and many others will be paying directly into Google's pockets.
     Now whether this is good or bad, I can't say yet.  It may clean out what has become an over-crowded list of available IM clients, void services, and corporate digital telephony options, but it just might force an interdependency between technology companies.  If Google plays it smart, it will keep the existing client list that Global IP Solutions(the void company they purchased) comes with, and use it to keep their competitors paying into Google's pocket and not those of somebody else.  Google doesn't the traction in the IM department that AOL and Yahoo! do, so try and compete with them just by taking out the already underlying architecture won't actually do much.  Those two will just find someone else to licenses the technology from, and their existing customer base probably won't even notice.  But if Google continues on with the contracts that GIPS came with, they will continue to hold power over some of their biggest competitors in the market.  That's something I wouldn't toss aside lightly.

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Um, Wow, Its Been a While

     If the title of this post is not enough explanation, I don't know what is.  The progress of Digital Fruit as a company is coming along great, which is why I haven't been able to get online and type up new blog posts.  It is kind of nice to get back on and just address the people that are reading the blog, instead of trying to recommend something or write a tutorial.  I'm just here today to give a quick update.
     Well, on the power production front, we've successfully generated enough power to start charging batteries, and we are still working on building a proper controller circuit.  We are also working on building a three phase alternating current windmill that will produce a much larger amount of power.
     On the software front, I've regressed back to study after a run in with some design problems with the Epic video game.  I've no idea why my current running model is failing, (and causing my computer to crash), so its back to study for a little while, then probably back to the drawing board.  Humbling experiences like this are always good for building skill as a programmer.  If you learn how to fix it now, you'll know how to fix it later.
     And on the tech support front, things are going swimmingly.  This has been our busiest month to-date, and it seems the tech support idea will be the driving financial part of Digital Fruit until the software section can really take off.
     Digital Fruit is also jumping on-board as a participant in the Ubuntu development community.  I personally am not a capable enough programmer yet to really contribute code, but we are helping with documentation and artwork until there is enough coding skill in the company to provide code.  And with my personal experiences with Ubuntu 10.4, as owner of Digital Fruit, I've decided we will make all of our software cross compatible between Windows, Mac, and Linux as far as that is possible. (Games written for Windows in DirectX will pose problems until I have a better development team behind me, then we can work on multiple versions at the same time.)
    And so, that is the state of Digital Fruit for the month of May, 2010.  Until I get more news, talk to you later!  ~ Andrew Petersen

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Lucid Lynx(A Real Alternative to Windows)

     Now, I'm not an operating system fanboy.  I use Windows primarily, because of its wide standing support and because most of my business stands on fixing Windows computers.  And I'm not really of the persuasion to say that Windows is going to die because of some 'next big thing'.  But at the persuasion of a ZDnet article that I read, I decided to download the latest release of Ubuntu Linux.  All I really need to say is, Wow!
     Now, my wife gives me weird looks for thinking that an operating system can look sexy, but believe me, compared to previous Linux distros I've played around with, this looks absolutely stunning.  The amount of thought and polish that went into the system this time around is amazing.
     Then, once you move past the new shiny look, there's the interface.
     I've personally installed the last four versions of Ubuntu on varying computers, and upgraded to the latest version on at least two of those systems.  I will say that it wasn't the best experience.   Prior to Ubuntu 10.4, there always seemed to be a bug in whichever system configuration I had running, and it would always keep the install process from flowing smoothly.  But with Lucid Lynx, I can say that the most problematic system in my network installed it smoothly. 
     And, I didn't have to spend the afternoon installing it either.  Ubuntu 10.4 installed faster than any other operating system I've dealt with, and with the least amount of knowledge about computers.  The install process really has taken away the mystery and fear behind installing your own operating system.  Rather than the old DOS looking installs of yore, you get a nice, polished window system that asks minimal questions and just gets the job done.
     On top of that, installing new programs is even nicer that before.  I've always praised Ubuntu for its easy of installation when it comes to programs listed in their repositories.  (I've still not tried installing anything from a .debian installer, so verdict is still out on whether or not this has improved.)  But this release of Ubuntu has really re-worked it.  With a vastly improved menu system, and a greatly improved organizational system, finding the right program to do what you want has never been this easy.
     And the integration of social media into the very operating system had me at hello.  The easy way you can set up any of your already existing accounts with any other e-mail or social network platform shocked me.  Its almost as easy as just signing in.  You choose your platform, for IM I used my MSN account, and type in your sign in and password, and voile, your in.  It was just as easy to connect to my gmail account.
     All in all, this update to Ubuntu has sold me.  I'm in the process of migrating most of my production software over to Ubuntu, and once we've given the system a test drive with all wheels rolling, I'll know for sure. (As a final note, this entire blog post was written while operating under Ubuntu.)  So, heres to the possibility that I may never go back. ^-^