Friday, June 18, 2010

Beautiful Memorabilia

Taken from the blog entry I wrote for the Primgraph

I was very excited when I saw that the World Steam Expo was taking place in Dearborn, Mi. Not that it meant that I was going to be able to visit, but some of my best SL friends live there and so I started pushing them to attend the event.

I had to spend some time convincing them. They are usually more Fantasy oriented than Steampunk, but I knew at least one of them liked Abney Park and after a while the excitement started to grow.
Of course I insisted that they had to get the Quest cards. It would have been great if they got Ralph’s card ! :)

In the end Alphonsus, Mykyl and Princess went to the Expo the afternoon of the Sunday, and they tell me they had a lot of fun. They walked home wearing goggles and victorian hats :)

Somehow mysteriously I was told that they had mailed me some material from the Expo. I smiled when I was told but I did not pay much more attention after that. So I was very curious a couple of days ago when I found a package in my mail.

What I found was absolutely lovely and I was delighted : the program of the events that took place at the Expo (would have been really fun to be there !), the fantastic postard of the Primgraph, a small “Visit New Babbage” Poster and the cards of Miss Prim, Ihaka, Nan and Lola !!!

Here they are, on display on my keyboard! Aren’t they wonderful ?!!! :))

The "Quest" Cards

The "Quest" Cards

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

a Tale

I am not a writer, I do not even try writing, I am a reader and I like the storytelling that takes place in SL. English is not even my mother tongue. Sometimes I write a few lines in this blog, but it  mostly a photo-blog. Yet today I want to write a little story. Maybe somebody would relate it to the current news in SL, but this is a story that took place in my RL and I was part of. Maybe it is a story that teaches a lesson. I just feel right to tell it

Once upon a time there was a nice little company. It was made by a few good, enthusiastic and geeky people and they were providing some nice products to their customers. The company was successful and grew. The customers were happy and they were telling nice things about the quality  and the level of service. The company kept growing and was considered successful. 

The owners saw potential and decided that some serious business people were required. So they started to bring sales managers in, and they built a bigger administration to better track costs and revenues and hired less technical people. "Geeks are not good to develop business" they said. "Keep them in their cubicle and let professionals take care of business."

The geeky people, old and news, looked around surprised at all the new people, but they kept doing their work happily for a while.

After a while the new people started to redefine the products, and redefine the way customers had to be dealt with. These were new innovative techniques. "They were going to work" they said

Slowly the customers began to complain. The quality of the products was not what they were used to and the quality of the service was dropping too.

"Not a problem" the new business people said. "When the customers never complain, it means that you are making too much and wasting resources".

The old customers kept complaining and some deal was lost. "Not a problem. We need a wider market. We are repositioning."

Things kept gown down. The old customers were more and more unhappy and new customers were not coming. "It is technical people's fault!" said the business people "They are too geeky. They do not understand business. They ask too much time, too many people. Costs go high. We are not competitive. Designers must learn to make more with less"

The quality of the products started to look bad. Bottom line started to look even worse. New financial people were brought in. "We need a CFO. Costs must be kept under control"

The technical people and the design projects started receiving less resources. The products worsened further. Pay raise and benefits were cancelled. Some consultants were hired. Some key designers turned their note in. "It is not bad as it looks. We need less geeks and more business oriented people"

Rumors started to be heard about a possible sale of the company. "We need to improve out cost structure to become more appealing" ... "This is a huge opportunity we must be able to pursue"

One day the staff was called to a general meeting. A guy never seen before started talking. "The company needs to improve its cost structure. I am here to help the company to achieve this objective. 20% of the staff will have to go"

The trade unions made some noise but at the end the people had to go. Projects were cancelled. Developments of new products stopped. The costs had to be kept under control.

After the first 20%, more people kept resigning. Some of the best technical experts found better opportunities and left. The quality of the team kept decreasing. Rumors about the company that used to be great started to be terrible. Where candidates used to say "Please hire me, I'd love to work here" during interviews, now they started asking "Give me a good reason to work with you" 

Customers were  pissed off. A lot. Some customers' purchase office put the company in the black list. At least one customer sued the company.

Eventually they slowly faded from the market and the investors never recovered their money  

The End

Yes ... I know ... I do not understand business :)

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Happy Birthday Radio Riel

Radio Riel is celebrating its third anniversary