This category contains 37 posts

The mountain beyond GOV.UK

Last week GOV.UK finally launched. Its pages are simple, the content and navigation is incredibly clear. It’s a huge step forward. And yet this is the easy bit. Alan Mathers has a fascinating blog post about GDS’s predecessor, the differences (or not) between the two, and asks questions about the future. You should read it. … Continue reading

Justifying developers’ salary increases

One of the most difficult aspects of line managing a team of developers in more established organisations is trying to change people’s salaries. Large established organisations tend to have an annual pay cycle, and changing pay outside of this cycle is a bureaucratic nightmare. Additionally, those organisations that aren’t naturally digital too often anticipate a … Continue reading

Putting “digital” into perspective

Last week I wrote about being a digital company. This week I want to add that being digital isn’t always a good thing. Two examples. One: Apple’s versus Google’s voice recognition. I don’t regard Apple as a digital company, and I do regard Google as one. That’s perhaps an odd statement, but by “digital” I … Continue reading

On being a digital company

Lots of pre-digital companies want to be digital companies. I work with some, and I know plenty of others. Any such company has had their business undermined by the web and digital-era competitors, and they want to adapt and compete. They say they “want to be a digital company”. So what does that mean? It … Continue reading

Why learn to code?

The discussion of children learning to code seems to have picked up again. How valuable is it really? I’m very sympathetic to the idea but also have reservations. In the UK coding for children is touted as “the new Latin”, a phrase coined in the Livingstone-Hope review on skills for the video games and visual … Continue reading

The joy of bigger companies

I love working in bigger companies, and I want to explain why. This week a blog post popped up on my radar which expressed very well why people love working in tiny companies like startups, so I thought it would be good to add a “yes, and…” for larger, more established, companies. The background Victoria … Continue reading

Asking “why?” changes everything

I was confounded the other day by Andrew Ross Sorkin’s criticism of Facebook’s IPO figures, which he wrote up in the New York Times. On the face of it he looked naive and distinctly non-digital when he wrote: On the first page of Facebook’s prospectus for its sale of stock to the public, it pegs … Continue reading

Innovation is bounded

In a discussion today about innovation many wise words were said, but one thing in particular stuck with me: that an organisation’s innovation is almost always limited to being a particular kind of innovation. On the one hand innovation is about change. On the other, you need a reliable — and therefore pretty fixed — … Continue reading

Answers to quiz of the year 2011

Here are the answers to last week’s quiz of the year — along with a reminder of the questions. If you still want to do the quiz then jump over to the original now, and don’t look below. Here goes… Question 1: “Zeebox is now live” said PaidContent in October. “Appearing initially as a TV … Continue reading

Quiz of the year 2011

If you’re like me then this is the time of year you love to gather your family together and look back fondly at 12 months of dodgy flotations, me-too launches, and fired CEOs. So here is a quiz of the tech world in 2011. It’s entirely partial, with all the questions coming from links I’ve … Continue reading