Four things investment firms can learn from Food Network Restaurant Impossible

The premise of Food Network’s Restaurant Impossible show is that muscle-bound chef Robert Irvine is given two days and $10,000 to save a restaurant from going out of business. Some of these restaurants are literally days from closing, and many are hundreds of thousands of dollars in debt. These owners are so desperate that they often invite Blaster Irvin to expose their mistakes to a national television audience.
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You may wonder how in the world Restaurant Impossible relates to the investment industry. As it turns out, many of the mistakes made by new, even seasoned restaurant owners are the same mistakes that keep investment companies from achieving sustainable success. After all, restaurants are great microcosms for SMBs (small to medium-sized businesses) because they are typically privately owned, operate in a single location, and employ staff and systems to perform day-to-day operations.
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Here are four recurring themes in the show that provide valuable lessons for our industry.

1: Dysfunction starts at the top

Thanks to clever editing and a slick one-hour format, the poor management of most of these restaurants becomes immediately apparent to viewers. There are owners who are only present for an hour or two each day, hoping that the restaurant will run itself. Conversely, there are owners who practically live in their restaurants and are so detached from reality that they no longer realize that bad food/bad service/bad atmosphere is destroying their business.
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A distinct lack of leadership is a common thread. Numerous episodes feature people with no real experience buying a restaurant, and subsequently struggling to define a purpose or vision for the business (other than just surviving).
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The menu often contains dishes that the owner wants or likes, but not what the market demands. The staff is disorganized and fails to perform even the most basic tasks of their job (like cleaning, which sends the already experimental Irvine into histrionics). This is not always because staff are incompetent – ​​it is because they are not given clear instructions about priorities and expectations from owners and management.
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The leader of any organization must set the tone for that business. Does management articulate and share a common vision and goal for the business? Do leaders foster a culture of calculated risk-taking and innovation, or cling to what has made them successful in the past? Are employees given clear expectations and held accountable for fulfilling their responsibilities? Is there an emphasis on constant evaluation and improvement?
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In a small enterprise, all of this needs to come from one place: the top.

#2: A good cook does not make you a great owner (and vice versa).
We’re forced to play many roles at an SMB, but top-performing restaurateurs understand that just owning a restaurant doesn’t make them great cooks. At the same time, being a fantastic chef does not always make one a savvy entrepreneur.
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Several Restaurant Impossible shows have featured husband/wife teams who mortgaged their homes or used their entire retirement savings to buy a restaurant because one of them “had a dream and was a good cook.” Almost universally, these restaurants start losing money from day one, as they quickly learn, a good cook is not the same as running a business.
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Similarly, private companies in our industry often have management structures that are dictated by ownership stakes as opposed to efficiency or capacity. The CEO of a portfolio management firm may be the person who developed the portfolio trading strategy. The sales manager can be an advisor who brings in a large book of business in exchange for equity. But do they have the skills to run a business or manage people? Maybe, maybe not.
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When company direction is determined by ownership (as opposed to expertise), business decisions regarding management, marketing, technology, and long-term strategy are not always optimal. The most effective companies (and restaurants) have owners willing and able to self-evaluate and empower others to help build a thriving enterprise. They know that the key to success is doing what you’re good at and surrounding yourself with great people who are good at doing the rest.
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#3: How can you manage it if you don’t measure it? (For example, Analysis 101)

Like Chef Irvin, we’re amazed at the number of failed restaurants on this show who still use paper tickets instead of automated POS (point of sale) software to operate their businesses. These are the same restaurant owners who, in the show’s opening on-camera interview, don’t know their food costs, their labor costs or their profit margins on certain dishes. Prices are set arbitrarily based on competitors or “guts”. Business Intelligence is anecdotal (“Wednesday night is the slowest we think, but I’m not sure”).

At one such restaurant, the owners tell Irvin how grateful they are for their catering business because it’s what “keeps our restaurant afloat.” A cursory examination of their financials reveals that the catering business is actually costing the restaurant thousands of dollars per year because of its mispricing.
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At another restaurant, the owners insist that they sell “a lot of beef wellingtons,” but, because they fail to track or understand business analytics, they don’t realize that only long-time customers buy beef wellingtons and there ‘sustain business. Long enough customers to keep. Or worse, the beef wellington costs more than the restaurant charges to make.

How many companies in our industry continue to set fees arbitrarily, based on intuition or competitors’ pricing, without considering how much it costs them to provide the service? For firms that charge fees based on a client’s assets under management, are all clients “created equal?” Are $50 million relationships always more profitable than $10 million relationships? Can you calculate, with reasonable accuracy, the total servicing cost of each of your relationships? (This includes your staff time, fees paid to third party services for reporting and custody, client retention costs, etc.)
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Sometimes, in the restaurant world, a group that has a $500 meal but holds a table for three hours (and consumes the staff’s attention) is less profitable than three $100 customers who quietly come and go at the same time.

The opposite can also happen. We’ve all seen or heard horror stories of relatively small account customers who spend hours of productivity requesting personalized, and sometimes unreasonable, custom reports or frequent face-to-face meetings.

The point is: If you don’t track these costs, you may end up attracting clients who end up costing you money, regardless of how much revenue they bring in to your business. But you’ll never know if your analytics consist of a few different Microsoft Excel spreadsheets, anecdotal observations, or worse, nothing at all.

#4: Clinging to the past (rather than building the future) is not a ‘recipe’ for success

Every failed restaurant owner featured in Restaurant Impossible is either inexperienced or naive. In fact, some of the most formidable owners on the show have years of experience and have successfully owned one or more restaurants in the past.

Their most common line of thinking is: “It worked then, why isn’t it working now?”

One aspect of the show’s $10,000 “makeover” budget is that a professional designer comes in to “freshen up,” or modernize, the interior of each restaurant. Many of these owners struggle with letting go of clutter and dated decor, believing, wrongly, that the design standards of the 1980s will continue to attract younger or more affluent customers.

They stubbornly resist changing menus that haven’t been updated in years to reflect different trends in the food industry or in their own communities. In one episode, the owners refused to consider changes to the menu or decor because both were favored by a handful of longtime customers. The problem is, except for weekly visits from these loyal diners, the restaurant is a ghost town.

We in the investment industry are particularly guilty of this phenomenon. The 1980s and 1990s were a great time to be in this business. With a booming economy and a stock market to match, it was a time of prosperity where elegant and expensive offices were seen as harbingers of success and credibility. Relationships were built with potential clients at golf courses and steak houses. It was almost impossible not to provide clients with healthy performance in their portfolios.

The industry-changing events of 2008 are still being felt today, but many organizations have failed to adapt to a new and more rigorous vision of money management, transparency and wealth. The industry is still behind the technology curve with software operators and so-called “robo-advisors”, while traditional firms (which still make up the majority of the market) have languished.

A huge investment generational gap exists, with most studies overwhelmingly showing that Generation X and Millennials will not use their parents’ advisors (and for the same reasons described above).

Ingredients for Success: A Checklist

Many restaurants that have heeded Chef Robert Irvine’s advice — and, most importantly, continued to advance his best practices — have reported increased sales and profitability after nearly going out of business. Here are some “ingredients” to use for your own future success:

• Define your business goals. Remember, making money is not a goal. It is a result.

• Build business culture around business goals.

• Make sure that every employee in your business – up to and including top leadership – has defined expectations and duties (defined means documented). Share it with everyone in your organization.

• Owners and managers need to be honest with themselves, focus on what they are good at and let others handle the rest.

Management and ownership are two different animals. It takes talented experts regardless of their ownership interests to run a successful organization.

• Make business decisions based on facts, not intuition. Understand how much each client is costing you. Build your pricing models around your costs and the added value you provide. If you build a pricing model around what your competitors are doing, you are a product.

• Look to the future, not the past. Emulate the leaders in your industry. Use the power of technology to increase the reach of your message and reduce costs.

Understand the specific characteristics of the generation that will inherit the wealth of the Baby Boomers. Start now to position yourself as someone who “gets it” to the generation.

• And finally, if Robert Irvine ever visits your office, at least make sure everything is clean!

5 More Ways to Make Money at Your School Carnival – Updated for the 2010 school year

A carnival is one of the best and most fun ways you can raise a significant amount of money for your school. The amount of work that goes into turning your carnival into a real, money-making machine, however, can be intense. Here are five tips you can use to really crank up your income-generating potential.

1. Use the latest technology in your marketing campaigns

A basic principle of marketing is to convey the message to your audience the way they receive information. Since your primary market is families with young children, you can safely assume that a large percentage of these parents are active online. Therefore, you should make sure that you use social networking outlets as your primary means of spreading the word.

Create a Facebook fan page for your school and fill it with quick posts like:

Important Dates/Times for Carnival

· Notification regarding sale of wristbands

· Adventure activities you book, such as bungee jumping or inflatable jousting

· Popular entertainment acts you’ve scheduled, such as a local band or high school cheerleading squad

Incentives like shaving the principal’s head if 80% of the school’s students buy wristbands in advance

At the carnival you’ll sell any specialty food items, such as deep-fried Oreo cookies

Get this information out in real-time and specifically ask your readers to pass the word by emailing the link or telling their friends to check out your school’s fan site.

I would also recommend recruiting a handful of students who are big time texters. Ask them to start a “text-tree” where they text ten of their friends and family members. Then, each of those ten texts ten more friends of their own, and so on, until the number explodes. It could be a simple message like “Don’t forget to buy your carnival wristband today”. This can be a very powerful tool for you.

Be sure to ask your school district if you can use their automated phone alert system, if they have one. It’s a phone system that calls you home to alert you of school cancellations or something similar. Many times, schools use these systems to tell parents about school plays or performances. Request parents’ permission to use the system to announce your school carnival at home or on mobile phones. It is a very effective means of communication at your disposal. If you’ve got it, use it!

2. Be more truthful in your marketing

Let’s face it, people have a hard time spending money on charities, which schools are in a bad economy. People get scared and want to hold on to their money. It’s understandable. However, it is also true that schools need to raise money for things, important things, that the budget will no longer cover. Therefore, I would suggest two very important messages to really hammer home your carnival marketing plan.

First, be very specific in your material. Tell the parents exactly what the money you raise will go towards. Work with school principals and teachers to come up with a list of all items dependent on fundraising. Tell parents that these items will be deducted if your goals are not met. Even go so far as to create a priority list – name the item to be cut first, etc. Your message may still go unnoticed by some, but for others, this reality check will be good encouragement. And at least, you could say, they were warned.

Second, make sure you start advertising long before your carnival. I am talking about six-seven months ago. Then, after you tell them what that means, specifically suggest that families should make reservations for your event. If you give them six months (24 weeks) and only pay $3 per week, that’s $72 during the event. If your school has 250 families and only half of them (125) save up to spend $72, you get $9,000. 75% of that amount would equal $13,000. Would that be helpful for your school?

I would even go so far as to start a school-wide project where the kids would get coffee cans or milk jugs and decorate them in personal savings banks for the school carnival. Even on a tight budget, many families can find ways to scrape together $3 a week. It’s only 43 cents a day! But, you need to make a plan for them.

If families don’t know the specific needs and don’t have a specific plan on how to meet the goals, you won’t be able to raise the money your school needs.

3. Pre-sale activity wristbands

In the above sections, I have mentioned pre-sale activities and game wristbands. Basically, it’s a concept where people get a discount for buying their all-access game tickets ahead of time. If a person chooses not to purchase the wristband in advance, they will have to pay more at the door on the day/night of the event. A $5 discount is usually enough of an incentive to pre-purchase.

I would suggest setting a school-wide goal for wristband sales. This means that you or the school principal will have to make a big deal with the kids about tracking their progress. Once a day or once per week, count and announce to the school how close you are getting to the goal.

This can be done with a simple “round thermometer” that you make with a few thick Sharpie markers—black and red—and a sheet of large poster board. It doesn’t have to be fancy to make the point. Really fire the kids for it. Of course, that means you have to offer them something pretty good in return for their efforts.

Although it’s an old-school principal shaving her head in front of the school is a great motivator (unless the principal is already bald or a woman who refuses to clipper). But an assembly, a free day at school, a day off from school (if private), or anything else that doesn’t cost you any money would be fine too.

With many activity wristbands sold in advance, you not only front-load your income, but you also get a good head start on estimating how much food you’ll need to have on hand. By adding pre-sale goals/reward systems, you are actively increasing your revenue.

4. Be smart about reward spending – use reward packs

It’s easy to splurge on the prizes you give your kids for the games they play. Some schools really get into it and set up a “prize redemption” station, where kids sell tickets won by playing games for various prizes, similar to an arcade.

I would recommend staying away from this system. While the kids love it, it presents a logistical nightmare for carnival organizers. You have to do all the math on how many tickets each child can potentially win in each game, each time they play. Then, you need to decide how many small, medium, and large prizes to buy based on how you think the kids will actually do. And you’d better not be spoiled by not getting enough “big” rewards. You may have some disgruntled young men on your hands…

Also, it takes an incredibly long time for kids to decide which reward(s) they want Have you ever stood in line behind a seven-year-old at the Chuck E. Cheese’s reward counter? It takes them years to figure out how to spend all their tickets. You will have a line snaking around the school, trying to manage it!

The solution, although not the most fun for kids, is pre-packaged prize packs that are all the same. You can make separate packs for boys and girls if you want. Good rewards are pencils, McDonald’s coupons, small candies, a homework pass, a few small toys, a rub-on tattoo, etc. In the long run, a child will not be disappointed by this bag of loot and you save a lot of grief for everyone involved.

5. Create crazy merchandise with monetizing add-ons

OK, so you’ve bought people activity wristbands and some food, but how do you get them to share some of the hear-earned dough?

From the moment a family arrives at your carnival, they should be overwhelmed with spending opportunities. The games and activities are inviting, but you can set up a bunch of other money-making stations that are also very interesting.

For example, you can sell “cascarones”. These are decorative eggshells that have been hollowed out and stuffed with confetti Once they are stuffed and decorated, you paste a small cover over the hole to hold the confetti.

Have volunteers make these by the dozen and then sell them individually at the carnival. A person is buying a cascarone, he or she sneaks up behind a friend and smashes them over the head, showering the person with confetti. It’s a good laugh for everyone. Just make sure the person buying the eggs knows not to hit their target too hard.

There are many articles online that provide instructions on how to make and decorate eggs. Do a simple search on Google to know more.

Another good idea is to set up a gel at the carnival. For a fee like 2 tickets (about $1) you can hire a prison guard to “arrest” one of his friends. The “arrested” person must stay in jail until he pays 4 tickets (about $2) to get out.

The jail should be in a conspicuous place where everyone can see who has been arrested.

If you really want to ratchet up the embarrassment, force the inmates to sing for the crowd while incarcerated. I once had to sing “Little Bunny Foo Foo” while waiting to get out of jail. It was very embarrassing, but a lot of fun!

Another idea to make some extra money at your carnival is to get a volunteer who can take candid shots with a camera all evening of friends having fun together. With a digital camera and a portable color printer, you can print copies for sale. Price the photos to move and make sure the photographer is also a good salesman to motivate people to buy.


These are just a few of the many tricks you can use to make more money at your next school carnival The most important piece of advice is to make sure you’re giving people what they want. The more ways you can entice them, the more money they will spend.

Meeting the Millennium Development Goals – Information Technology as a Development Tool

As per my writing practice, I try to think about various issues as it pertains to Nigeria and the rest of the developing (unsound; underdeveloped) economies. As we are still struggling to catch up with most of the West in the rest of the world on every issue related to the development of values. The way we use the Internet, the GSM communication system, and all other IT-based innovations lend credence to this fact. Now back to the topic that gave birth to this article, the Millennium Development Goals (MDG).

The Millennium Development Goals are an eight-point agenda set by the United Nations to develop by 2015 targets for underdeveloped members with low Human Development Index (HDI) and low per capita income (as most of these countries live on an average of one dollar a day). The resolution was adopted by 149 leaders from different parts of the world, and in 2000, 189 countries adopted it. Still in terms of different issues, these agendas or goals were derived from the United Nations Millennium Declaration. plagued the developing world

The Millennium Development Goals are the world’s answer and aim to address extreme poverty at various levels; Such as income poverty; lack of adequate shelter, hunger; and disease among others, while promoting education, gender equality and environmental sustainability.

Now to the point, how can these Millennium Goals be achieved given our peculiar circumstances and conditions? Now we are in the information age and it is natural that we see how we can still be as a nation.

Calculated in the global economy, use the information we have to make it a reality within the target year. Internet, GSM technology etc. have come to stay with us, and IT remains the only true tool that can be used. A new dawn where basic human rights such as health, education, shelter and security of every person on the planet as well as gender equality and women’s empowerment can be achieved on a plate. It has been observed that countries like China and India have been flooded with population explosion but have adopted the concept of IT as the only true tool for their human development, witnessing geometric growth in their per capita income and overall human development index, available statistics and others. Data forms and economic indicators can belie this fact.

Now if I may digress a bit, I will say here that the Millennium Goals are to be achieved by Nigeria and the rest of the developing economies; Urgent steps should be taken to implement the following:

Computer literacy programs at all levels of individual development, from kindergarten

Funding of government as well as private sector IT organizations

Increasing funding for medical research and other IT-based medical programs at most tertiary institution levels by encouraging exchange programs through partnerships with developed countries

The agriculture sector should experience increased funding of all its programs especially IT based research to report a huge output in production for local consumption as well as export.

The perils facing the continent from hunger and poverty, HIV/AIDS epidemic, depletion of renewable energy and resources etc. can be tackled if information technology is improved in every sector of our economy and in general politics.

Eradication of poverty and hunger: Poverty and hunger are the biggest scourges in the African continent, but with the advancement of technology, information technology and the Internet, food produced in the United States, Canada, Europe and Asia can be easily shipped. Africa and other parts of the world where it is needed. During times of war and conflict, as experienced in the Nigerian/Biafran war that lasted from 1967-1970, the Nigerian government’s information blockade resulted in food and medical shortages, particularly on the Biafran side.

But with the advancement of information technology, wherever such problems exist, the satellites will collect the signals and hence do what is necessary to reduce the problems related to lack of food and other supplements. As a local importer based in Nigeria or any part of the developing world, you can connect with big farmers in Europe or USA etc through the internet through company websites and email addresses. Agricultural produce can be easily exported by saving the cost of flight tickets, hotel booking and reservation, taxes etc. and also eliminates the role of middlemen which greatly saves production and import costs.

HIV/AIDS (PLWHA): The HIV/AIDS epidemic is currently raging in the African continent with Nigeria and South Africa trailing India in that order, as can be inferred from the lack of adequate data, but with recent developments in the field of information technology, this catastrophe may emerge. Will be well taken care of. The introduction of mobile clinics and diagnostic centers operating especially in remote and rural areas, was made possible by the advent of information technology, where a doctor at a remote clinic, for example a doctor at the Johns Hopkins University Hospital in the United States, uses sophisticated gadgets to travel to both clinics and remote locations in the United States and a satellite. And patients are diagnosed and treated through a modem. With this development, HIV/AIDS patients or PLWHA (People Living with HIV/AIDS) and other serious illnesses can now be managed, as the limitations caused by distance have been removed with the advancement of information technology.

Power and Energy: As part of the United Nations Millennium Development Goals, energy and other forms of renewable energy have been studied over the past decade, as fossil fuel reserves continue to decline with replenishment, becoming relevant for countries whose economies focus on it. To bring progress and diversity so that countries with high Human Development Index can exist, and if one should ask, how can this be achieved if not through information technology. Recently a group of scientists has developed an automobile that can be powered by wind, it sounds amazing; One of the wonders of IT. More discoveries and inventions will be made, as earlier discoveries such as space science have improved virtually all areas of the economy of nations such as the United States, Russia, and Europe in medicine, telecommunications, military, etc.

From the beginning, one cannot overemphasize the importance of information technology as a tool for human and resource development, just as the Industrial Revolution of the 18th century ushered in a new dawn that has remained evergreen in the annals of history, so will it. Create an unprecedented and unmistakable mark that will remain evergreen in the sands of time.

Review of Movie "Baahubali – The Conclusion"

I received a call from my younger sister that the tickets had been booked and the family would be watching the movie “Baahubali-The Conclusion” in Telugu language on April 29th, 2017 at Eros Theatre in New Delhi. As usual, I was excited and assured her that I will be reaching the theatre directly after my working hours or I would take the permission to join them at the theatre. However, it was decided that I must reach home and accompany them. Each one of us was excited. However, my sister, who was at the driver’s seat, was proud to announce that she has seen the movie in the Hindi language on April 28th, 2017. She was hyper about it as though it was a great achievement for her. Moreover, she wanted to compare the movie in both languages. She promised me that she will not share the story with me.

The theatre was jam packed and everyone wanted to watch the movie without losing a single scene. Each one of the individual arrived in time and took the possession of their sets. I wish we were so punctual in our classes too! Children demanded their parents for the large pack of popcorn and soft drinks. How could I miss them? I wanted to do two things together-watch and munch! Thanks the movie began on time.

According to the Central Board of Film Certification, the name of the movie was “Baahubali-The Conclusion”. It was in Telugu language. It was coloured one and was cinemascope. The date of release was April 24th, 2017 and under the Universal category (that is meant for both adults and children). However, it was clearly mentioned that the movie must be watched under parental guidance. The name of the applicant to sign was Shri Y.N. Sobhandari for M/s Arka Media Works Entertainment LLP, Hyderabad and other signee was Shri Pahlaj Nihalani, Chairperson, CBFC, Mumbai. The duration of the movie was for 167 minutes and 30 seconds.

Wow! I liked the titles of the movie for following reasons:

a. Computer graphics and dummies were used for various kinds of animals shown in the movie like horse, elephant, parrot, pig, oxen, birds, ducks, bison, boar, falcon, swan, etc.

b. The team thanked agencies, digital cinema, travel partners, currency exchange office in Hyderabad, health care partner, social media channels, accommodation partner,chocolate and confectionary partner, nutrition, mobile, communication, Reliance Fresh to get various goods, multiplex and Jewellery partner, location and experience partner, stationary, messaging partner “hi”, agency partner,beauty partner to “Lux”, fitness partner, Make a Wish Campaign, merchandizing and licensing through ICICI Bank, Simba, etc. , insurance providers, their bankers were IDBI and Kotak Bank, Hyderabad, their financers, media and radio partners, etc. They did not forget the contribution and participation of single person also. That’s something to be appreciated for the success of the movie.

c. Very elaborative and distinctive background was shown in the titles. This is must for capturing the attention and focus of the audience. Kudos for their thinking powers.

d. The movie was a combination of both real shots and multimedia graphical frameworks. Thus, attention of the children was at its maximum level.

e. Titles were providing, associating and linking the connectivity between Baahubali Part 1 and Baahubali-The Conclusion. The short story of the part One of the movie was showcased in the Titles of the movie (one must have perceived the audience in the theatre-I perceived that all of them were dumbstruck and not even a single person was blinking their eyes-I thought movies indeed play a major role in learning and educating ourselves, and there is no need to work hard with the individuals. This will do wonders in the classes of Law, Literature, History, Sociology and Journalism and Mass Media. ).

The movie was presented by K. Raghavendra Rao, production of an Arka Mediaworks and creative film by S. S. Rajamouli. The lyrics and dialogues were written by Manoj Muntashir. The music was by M. M. Keeravani. The cinematography by K. K. Senthil Kumar. Vivid colored sketches were introduced at the beginning of the movie with the song at the background. The producers of the movie were Shobu Yarlagadda and Prasad Devineni. The screenplay and Direction was by S. S. Raja Mouli. The main star cast was Prabhas, Rana Daggubati, Anushka Shetty, Sathyaraj, Ramya Krishna, Nassar and Tamannaah. It was distributed by Arka Media Works for Telugu version, K. Productions for Tamil version, Global United Media for Malayalam version and Dharma Productions for Hindi version. It was released in 4K high Definition format.

Once the titles are over, the story begins for us. Our hero-Amarendra Baahubali– achieves his victory in the battlefield. The Queen Mother is proud of this achievement and declares that he will be crowned as the future king of Maahishmati. Her words turned out to be the festival moments for the people in the kingdom. However, her own and real son Bhallaladeva and husband are against her wishes. Her husband starts instigating Bhallaladeva against her. This is the turning point in the movie.

The Queen Mother instructs Amarendra and Katappa to take the tour of their kingdom in order to gain more knowledge of their subjects and well-being. Amarendra meets Devasena and is attracted by her charm and skills. They fall in love with each other. Soon this information reaches to Bhallaladeva and he makes a plan to create the differences between Shivagami and Amarendra. He tells his mother that he has fallen in love with Devasena and expresses his desire to marry her. The proposal is sent to Devasena from the side of Shivagami and is rejected by Devasena. The Queen is enraged at this attitude of Devasena and instructs Amarendra to capture, bind her as prisoner and present her at the court of Maahishmati.

Amarendra helps and protects the kingdom of Kuntala from their enemies called Pindaris. With his excellent skills, Amarendra overpowers Pindaris and saves the kingdom. Devasena was curious to know about the truth and demands to reveal his identity. She comes to know that Amarendra is the future king of Maahishmati and refuses to be the prisoner. He promises to protect her modesty and marries her. Both of them leave for Maahishmati. Shivagami comes to know about the truth and is not happy about it. At this time, she feels guilty for not keeping her promise to Bhallaladeva. This is the first point where the turning point of the story can be observed in the movie.

The differences between Shivagami and Amarendra kick off from this point. Soon Shivagami asks Amarendra to leave the kingdom with his pregnant wife. With the help of evil ideas, Bijjaladeva is successful in creating more differences between them. In one scenario, he declares that Amarendra is trying to assassinate Bhallaladeva in order to be the King. She orders Katappa to kill Amarendra secretly so that the kingdom is saved from disharmony between the royal family and the subjects. As a result, Amarendra is stabbed to death by Katappa, the queen is informed about the treacherous ideas of Bijjaladeva and Bhallaladeva and her mistake in judging her own people. In the meantime, Devasena gives birth to a baby boy and arrives to the palace after knowing the death of her husband. Shivagami announces that the new borne baby is Mahendra Baahubali and future king of Maahishmati.

Bhallaladeva is surprised and orders his soldiers to capture the Queen, kill the baby and imprison Devasena. The Queen escapes from the palace and dies soon. The baby is rescued by the common people and called as Shivudu. Soon he comes to know about his imprisoned mother Devasena from Katappa and falls in love with Avantika. He fights against the injustice and is victorious in the end.

Positive points of the movie:

a) No animal was hurt or exploited in any scene. They get full marks from all animal lovers, environmentalists and eco-caring philosophers and feminists.

b) This means that creativity was at its highest level in the media laboratories for the team members.

Otherwise they might have missed on the minute details of the particular scene. There is a need to applaud the entire team.

c) The Police Commissioner and his team were specially thanked for allowing the film unit to work on areas of Rachakonda in Andhra Pradesh for the shooting of some of the scenes in the movie.

d) The audience were clapping and enjoying the comic scenes present in the movie.

e) Elaborate efforts were taken to create awesome visual and audio effects in the movie.

f) Game was also developed on the release of the movie.

g) Care had been taken to portray the realities of the historical era9as this was a historical movie though not filmed on any particular king or queen or kingdom).

h) The Prince had been trained and educated in all the respective skills required for the future king in the movie. For example, the Amarendra Baahubali knew how to take risks, tackle the situations-both intentional and spontaneous one, presence of the leadership qualities, minute observation skills (for example when Prince visits the kingdom of Kuntala, he observes that the villagers were using their strong-built cattle for various purposes and same skill was helpful and used when there was the need of the hour to fight against the powerful army of Pindaris), being alert and helping the army of the other kingdom without delegating the work to others, etc.

i) Sensitivity of the Prince towards his own love, keeping promises, fighting against the evils, nurturing his own subjects, maintaining various kinds of relationships, sacrificing his own life for the sake of the kingdom and mother, protecting weak subjects and women are valuable and learning lessons for all.

j) No marginalization of the individuals was observed in the movie. This is the need of the hour in the contemporary society wherein women and children are equally treated and no partiality in giving or sharing of the knowledge. For example, Amarendra observes that Devasena is eager to learn about a special skill in archery and he readily teaches her the skill. This helps both of them to protect and fight against the enemies.

k) The individuals chosen for the respective characters are excellent and they matched with their roles.

l) Elephants were used in the battlefields in the historical times. Out of the 64 branches of learning in the traditional schools of education, it was mandatory for the Princes to learn about the treatment and rearing of certain animals like horses and elephants. This is something observed in the movie and eye-capturing one(one can compare this with the scene in the movie Jodha-Akbar wherein Akbar takes the initiative to control the mad elephant and this will be presented in another article of mine as a comparative study).

m) Medicinal value of turmeric powder and its remedial usage for the mad elephants is brilliantly showcased in the movie.

n) The feelings of the animals especially the elephants are shown in the scenes wherein the prince is equally sympathetic and cares for the royal elephant. Another point secured from the side of the environmental ethicists and philosophers.

o) The attitudes, qualities and characteristic features of the royal family have been very well depicted in the movie.

p) The importance of the non-communicative language has been very well captured in the movie and it is part of the human and animal culture. For example, “the warming” gesture shown by the Prince towards the “calmed down” elephant is very natural one. Elephants love their masters and other individuals caressing their trunks with hands. The different feelings exhibited by Devasena towards Amarendra in various scenes are appreciable from my side.

q) Extraordinary skills and techniques are observed in the movie. For example, while sitting on the elephant, Prince Amarendra pulling and shooting the flame carrying spear to burn the effigy of Raavan;

shooting of three arrows, using natural surroundings to fight against their enemies, etc.

r) Rights of the women and children are shown in the movie.

s) The world wide gross collections for the movie is Rs1725 crores.

Negative points in the movie:

a) Lot of time must have been spent by the individuals on the detailed working on each and every frame of the movie shot wherein the animals were used.

b) Children did not like too much of the fighting scenes in the movie.

c) First of the movie was the flashback and was interesting to watch. However, the second half seemed to be slightly artificial with the fighting skills of the army.

d) Why did not Devasena fight against her enemies as she herself was trained enough with various skills and possessed the leadership qualities? It was surprising.

e) The Queen Mother was very knowledgeable and always took her decisions in an intelligent manner rather than in an emotional way. However, the turning point of the movie was understood immediately when she was emotional for her very own son and unconscious feelings for love of her son soon manifested in the choice of her daughter-in-law.

f) There are many questions raised after watching the movie and they are-

1. Can a husband plot against his own wife in order to become the king?

2. Can a father instigate his own son to be against his mother?

3. Can royal male members speak in an abusive language?

g) Audience is under strong assumption that there will be a third part of the movie.

In the end, I will like to summarize my review in the following way:

1. No doubt there are spectacular visual effects and they indeed mesmerized the audience throughout the movie.

2. There was breathtaking suspense created in the movie for the audience. As the movie was running further on, one may feel the real suspense and uttering of the words” Oh! No”.

3. The mood was of the audience was spell bound and atmosphere was amazing one in the theatre.

4. There were certain poorly placed scenes in the movie and they were not required at all.

5. There was no question of unsuccessful attempts in the movie. Otherwise, there could not have been an earning of an amount of Rs 1725 crores collected within 6 days of the release of the movie.

6. The details of the movie are narrated in a nice and clear manner.

7. There were exuberant sceneries in the movie.

8. The overall make up, dresses and Jewellery shown in the movie is simply irresistible.

9. There were perfect action and team coordination in the entire production of the movie.

10. One cannot tend to forget certain moments shown in the movie.

11. The plot was really good and different from the current movies because of which it has been a big hit with the audience.

12. This movie has been compared to the other popular movies like Sholay.

13. The movie was wonderful with the characters selected and their presentation in the movie.

14. There was hilarious momentum created through some scenes in the movie and enjoyed by the audience.

15. There were indeed some unexpected plot twists present in the movie.

16. There are certain scenes which are unbelievable and are pure creation of the imagination and hardwork.

17. It is indeed a phenomenal movie in South India as well as in North India.

18. Similar kind of hypes was present in the mythological movies of N.T. Rama Rao and Akkineni Nageshwara Rao in the past in Andhra Pradesh and Tamil Nadu.

19. The characteristic feature of Raj Mouli’s movies seems to be rotating around suspense in each and every part. There is an assumption that Part III of the movie will be more suspensive by nature and this is confirmed by the film crew members.

20. The music was not very disappointing one.

21. There are elements of confusion in the movie. For example, if Bhallaladeva never married anyone, then how come his son was present in the story?

22. One can conclude that there was some kind of imitation present in the movie (due to the fact that earlier mythological movies were directed in Andhra Pradesh).

23. It is a typical South Indian movie.

24. Prabhas-the main hero of the movie-was a very moving portrayal of the character and it suited his personality also.

25. The quality of the film was awesome and I was impressed by its credible shots and creative ideas in the making of the movie.

26. This will be one of the classic and captivating movies for the coming years in the Indian history.

Make your product launch a success

But even that has the potential for massive disappointment! There are few things more annoying than launching a product and finding out that no one is interested in it. So how do you make sure it gets the hit it deserves?

Ask the audience!

If you already have a successful mailing list or social media channel, why not ask your audience what they want to see? This can make a huge difference in your ultimate success as you can ensure that you are creating a product that is in demand!

Run a beta test

Having only a few people participate in the production phase of your product is a great way to ensure you get feedback on the product. Moreover, it creates a lot of excitement and buzz and you get people discussing the product, which is precisely your goal.

Publish a press release

A press release is an excellent tool you can use to get media coverage for your launch. A launch is inherently more interesting than a regular product, so you have a better chance of getting a story, especially if you find an interesting story about the creation of your product or its content.

Add lots of extra ingredients

The more additional materials you can include as freebies, the more compelling your product will be. This should include videos, reports, mind maps – anything you can think of!

Differentiate your product

If you want to differentiate your product, it can’t cover the same old ground as every other product in your niche. Cover something different and make sure you have something to say!

Engage affiliates

One of the best things you can do for any product launch is get an army of collaborators to help you promote it. To make sure they want to sign up, incentivize them with high commissions, free marketing materials they can use, and contests with cash prizes for the best promoters.

Use a countdown timer

Making sure people can see your clock ticking is a great way to make the excitement more palpable!

Mailing lists are perfect for a product launch

Launching a product is an amazing way to build hype and excitement before it goes live, regardless of what you want to sell. This can lead to a massive flow of sales and essentially help you significantly increase your momentum which will continue throughout the sales process going forward.

So how do you make sure people are excited about your launch? What is the best way to create hype? Where should you promote your upcoming launch?

One of the best options is to create a mailing list and use it to promote your product. Read on to see why this is such a great option…

Your squeeze page

To build your mailing list, you’re going to create a squeeze page. A squeeze page is a page on your website where you convince people to sign up for your future emails. That’s one purpose of this page and so you’ll do what you can to convince people it’s a good idea to subscribe

And often that means using a ‘stimulus’.

That incentive can usually be a free ebook or possibly money from future products Either way, it’s something you’re giving away for free in exchange for the contact details of the people who sign up.

This can be very effective for getting more people to join but the risk of a squeeze page is that it can end up meaning people just sign up for the free product and aren’t really interested in your next emails. You’ll know this has happened if you find yourself with a very low open rate.

How a product launch changes everything

But what if you are offering a free product as an incentive? So were the emails themselves stimulating?

Imagine a scenario where you can make your product attractive and unique but you’re a bit vague on the specifics. Your audience knows the product can help them but they aren’t really sure what exactly it is or what’s good about it. Thus, they want to learn more.

They will then sign up to your mailing list to be the first to be updated with more information about the product! And this only works with a product launch because no one will sign up to be notified of a product that is already for sale!

The Evolution of Word Wide Web – WWW


World Wide Web (WWW) is the system of interlinked hypertext documents containing text, images, audio, videos, animation and more. User can view and navigate through these documents using hyperlinks or navigation elements which have references to another document or to the section of the same document. In a broader sense “The World Wide Web is the universe of network-accessible information, an embodiment of human knowledge.”

History of World Wide Web

WWW was first proposed in 1990 by Tim Berners-Lee and Robert Cailliau while working at the CERN, the European Council for Nuclear Research. Both of them came out with their individual proposal for Hypertext systems and later on they united and offered joint proposal. The term “Word Wide Web” was first introduced in that joint proposal. The history of every invention has lot of pre-history. Similarly the World Wide Web has also lot of pre-historical gradual development of hypertext system and internet protocols which made the WWW possible. The gradual development started in the early 1945, with the development of Memex, a device based on microfilms for storing huge amount of documents and facilitating organizing those documents. Later in 1968 “Hypertext” was introduced, which made linking and organization of documents fairly easy. In 1972 DARPA (Defense Advance Research Project Agency), started project that connect all research centers to facilitate data exchange which later adopted for military information exchange. In 1979 SGML (Standard Generalized Markup Language) was invented to enable sharing of documents for large government project by separating content from the presentation and thereby enabling same document to be rendered in different ways. In 1989 Tim Berners-lee came out with Networked Hypertext system form CERN Laboratory. In 1990, joint proposal for hyper text system was presented and the term “World Wide Web” first introduced. In 1992 first portable browser was released by CERN, and that had picked up industry interest in internet development. Today web is so much popularized and has grown to be so invaded in to our lives; it becomes almost impossible to imagine the World without web.

Web Evolution – What and How?

Each technology has certain distinguished characteristics and features. Similarly web has certain features such as data, services, mess-up, APIs, social platform and more. These features are continuously and progressively evolving in distinct stages with qualitative improvements over the existing. Web evolution is categorized and hyped with some fancy marketing terms like “Web 1.0”, “Web 2.0”, “Social Web”, “Web 3.0”, “Pragmatic Semantic Web”, “Pragmatic Web” and many more.

Yihong Ding, PHD candidate at Brigham Young University, in his article on “Evolution of Web” explained the development of Web by analogically comparing it with the human growth. Yihong Ding stated “The relationship between web pages and their webmasters is similar to the relationship between children and their parents. As well as parents raise their children, webmasters maintain and update their web pages. Human children have their normal stages of development, such as the newborn stage, pre-school stage, elementary-school stage, teenage stage, and so on. Analogically, web has its generations, such as Web 1.0, Web 2.0, and so on.”

Along with technological advancement web design also changed over the period of time. Initial design was simple hypertext read only system which allowed users to read the information. User was just a viewer of what is presented on the web. Gradually images and tables added with evolution of HTML and web browsers, which allowed making better design. Development of photo-editing tools, web authoring tools and content management tools enabled designer to begin creating visually appealing website design layouts. In the next phase of development, web design changed with the change in usability and the focus is diverted on the users rather than the content of the website. User interaction and social touch is applied to the web design. Now user is not just a viewer. User can drive the web with feedback, information sharing, rating and personalization. Gradually we got the mature blend of function, form, content and interaction, called Read/Write Web. Continuing this evolution, meaning is added to the information presented on the web so that online virtual representatives of human can able to read and interprets the presented information. This kind of web where user agent imitating human behavior, can read and understand the information using artificial intelligence is called semantic web.

Web 1. 0 (Read Only Web)

World Wide Web is evolved in stages. First stage was the basic “Read Only” hypertext system also termed as Web 1.0 since the hype of Web 2.0. In fact in the original proposed web model, Tim Berners-Lee envisioned web as the Read/Write Model with HTTP PUT and HTTP DELETE method. These methods were almost never used just because of security reasons.

Some of the Characteristics of Web 1.0

1. In Web 1.0 web master is constantly engaged with responsibility of managing the content and keeps user updating. Majority of hyperlinks to the contents are manually assigned by the web master.

2. Web 1.0 does not support mass-publishing. The content on the website is published by the web master and thereby does not leverage the collective intelligence of users.

3. Web 1.0 uses basic hyper text mark up language for publishing content on the internet.

4. Web 1.0 pages do not support machine readable content. Only human who are web readers can understand the content.

5. Web 1.0 provides contact information (email, phone number, fax or address) for communication. Users have to use the off-line world for further communication with this contact information.

6. In Web 1.0, web pages are designed to react instinctively based on the programmed condition. Specific result or response is generated when the programmed condition is satisfied. Web 1.0 model does not understand remote request and can not prepare response for potential request in advance. To clearly understand above characteristics of web 1.0, Yihong Ding in his article on “Evolution of World Wide Web” has analogically correlated World of Web 1.0 with the world of a Newborn baby.

Newborn Baby : I have parents

Web-1.0 Page : Webmasters

Newborn Baby : Watch me, but I won’t explain

Web-1.0 Page : Humans understand, machines don’t

Newborn Baby : Talk to my parents if you want to discuss about me

Web-1.0 Page : Contact information (email, phone number, fax, address, …)

Newborn Baby : My parents decide who my friends are. Actually, I don’t care

Web-1.0 Page : Manually specified web links

Newborn Baby : Hug me, I smile; hit me, I cry (conditional reflex)

Web-1.0 Page : Reactive functions on web pages

Source: Analogy from the Article by Yihong Ding from http://www.deg.byu.edu/ding/WebEvolution/evolution-review.html#w1:1 “The web 1.0 pages are only babies.

Web 2. 0 (Read Write Web)

“Web 2.0 is the understanding that the network is the platform and on the network is platform roles for the business is different. And the cardinal role is user adds value. And figuring out how to built database and things to get better so that more people use that and it’s the secret of web 2.0.

Web 2.0 is the business revolution in the computer industry caused by the move to the internet as platform, and an attempt to understand the rules for success on that new platform.”[4]

In Web 2.0 the idea of Consumer (Users) and Producer (Web Master) is dissolving. Web 2.o is more about communications and user interactions. Web 2.0 is all about participation. “Content is the King” often cited quote during early web 1.0 days, is now turned in to “User is the King” in Web 2.0. In web 2.0 users communicates through blogging, wikis and social networking websites. Everything on the web is tagged, to facilitate easy and quick navigation. Web 2.0 is also about combining it all in one single page by means of tagging and AJAX with better usability via lots of white space, and a cleaner layout. The API ability makes it possible for programmers to mash up data feeds and databases to cross reference information from multiple sources in one page. In contrast with web 1.0, web 2.0 has collective intelligence of millions of users.

Web 2.0 is all about improved version of World Wide Web with changing role and evolving business model where users learned to communicate with the other users instead of just communicating with the publisher of the content.

Some of the Characteristics of Web 2.0

1. Web 2.0 is the second version of Web providing RIA (Rich Internet Application) by bringing in the desktop experience such as “Drag and Drop” on the webpage in browser.

2. SOA (Service Oriented Architecture) is the key piece in Web 2.0. Buzzwords around SOA are Feeds, RSS, web services and mash up, which defines how Web 2.0 application exposes functionality so that other applications can leverage and integrate those functionalities providing much richer set of applications.

3. Web 2.0 is the Social web. Web 2.0 Application tends to interact much more with the end user. End users are not only the users of the application but also the participants whether by tagging the content, whether he is contributing to the wiki or doing podcast for blogging. Due to the Social nature of application end user is the interval part of the data for the application, proving feedbacks and allowing application to leverage that user going to use it.

4. In Web 2.0 philosophy and strategy is that “The Web is open”. Content is available to be moved and changed by any user. Web site content is not controlled by the people who made the web site but by the user who are using the web site.

5. In Web 2.0 Data is the driving force. Users are spending much more time online and started generating content in their passive time. Web 2.0 requires some of the key technologies to be used in the development of web pages. One of the important technologies is the AJAX which supports development of rich user experience.

6. Web 2.0 websites typically include some of the following key technologies.

– RSS (Really Simple Syndication), which allows users to syndicate, aggregate and to set up the notification of the data using feeds.

– Mashups, which makes it possible to merge the content from different sources, allowing new form of reusing of the information via public interface or APIs.

– Wikis and Forums to support user generated content.

– Tagging, which allows users to specify and attach human readable keyword to web resource.

– AJAX – Asynchronous Java Script and XML, which is the web development technique, allowing exchange of interactive data behind the scene without reloading the web page.

To clearly understand above characteristics of web 2.0, Yihong Ding in his article on “Evolution of World Wide Web” has analogically correlated World of Web 2.0 with the world of a Pre-School Kid.

Pre-School Kid : I have parents

Web-2.0 Page : Webmasters (blog owners)

Pre-School Kid : Parents teach me knowledge (though often not well organized)

Web-2.0 Page : Tagging

Pre-School Kid : I understand but maybe imprecise and incorrect

Web-2.0 Page : Folksonomy

Pre-School Kid : I can deliver and distribute messages, especially for my parents

Web-2.0 Page : Blogging technology

Pre-School Kid : Who my friends are is primarily determined by my parents’ social activities and their teaching

Web-2.0 Page : Social network

Pre-School Kid : Multiple of us can be coordinated to do something beyond individual’s capabilities

Web-2.0 Page : Web widget, mashup

Pre-School Kid : I can do suggestion based on my communication with friends

Web-2.0 Page : Collective intelligence

Following table distinguish the difference between Web 1.0 and Web 2.0

Web 1.0 is about : Reading

Web 2.0 is about : Reading /Writing

Web 1.0 is about : Publishing

Web 2.0 is about : Feedbacks, Reviews, Personalization

Web 1.0 is about : Linking Content using Hyperlinks

Web 2.0 is about : mashup

Web 1.0 is about : Companies

Web 2.0 is about : CommunityCommunity

Web 1.0 is about : Client-Server

Web 2.0 is about : Peer to Peer

Web 1.0 is about : HTML

Web 2.0 is about : XML

Web 1.0 is about : Home Pages

Web 2.0 is about : Blogs and Wikis

Web 1.0 is about : Portals

Web 2.0 is about : RSS

Web 1.0 is about : Taxonomy

Web 2.0 is about : Tags

Web 1.0 is about : Owning

Web 2.0 is about : Sharing

Web 1.0 is about : Web form

Web 2.0 is about : Web Application

Web 1.0 is about : Hardware Cost

Web 2.0 is about : Bandwidth Cost

Web 3. 0 (Semantic Web)

Web is no longer linking and tagging of information and resources. With the advent of semantic web concept, special information is attached to the resources or information so that machine can understand and read just like human.

Timer Berner Lee envisioned

“I have a dream for the Web [in which computers] become capable of analyzing all the data on the Web – the content, links, and transactions between people and computers. A ‘Semantic Web’, which should make this possible, has yet to emerge, but when it does, the day-to-day mechanisms of trade, bureaucracy and our daily lives will be handled by machines talking to machines. The ‘intelligent agents’ people have touted for ages will finally materialize.”

Semantic Web has derived from his vision of web as the universal medium for exchange of data, information and knowledge. Web 3.0 or Semantic Web is an Executable Phase of Web Development where dynamic applications provides interactive services and facilitates machine to machine interaction. Tim Berner Lee has further stated

“People keep asking what Web 3.0 is. I think maybe when you’ve got an overlay of scalable vector graphics – everything rippling and folding and looking misty – on Web 2.0 and access to a semantic Web integrated across a huge space of data, you’ll have access to an unbelievable data resource.” Semantic web is the an extension of World Wide Web in which web content is expressed in machine readable language, not just in nature language, so that user agents can read, process and understand the content using artificial intelligence imitating human behavior. In other words Semantic Web is an extension of the web where content expressed can be processed independently by intelligent software agents.

There can be several agents one can program within the context of vocabulary of the vertical domain.

For example

“Travel Agent”, who keep searching chipset air tickets based on your criteria and notify you when it gets the perfect one.

“Personal Shopper Agent”, who keeps looking for the specific product on the eBay and get it for you once it finds the one that match with all of your criterions.

Similarly we can have “Real Estate Agent”, “Personal Financial Advisor Agent” and many more.

All user is doing is just creating their personal agent which talks with the web services which are exposed publicly and there by taking care of lots of repetitive tasks.

Precisely Web 3.0 = Every human + Every device + Every Information

Characteristics of Semantic Web

1. Unlike database driven websites, In Semantic Web database is not centralized.

2. Semantic Web is the Open System where schema is not fixed as it may take any arbitrary source of data.

3. Semantic Web requires using Meta description languages such as Web Ontology Language and the Resource Description Framework (RDF). Annotation requires lot of time and effort.

Web n.0 – a Glimpse of the Future

Let me add one more element to the previous formula

Web 3.0 = Every human + Every device + Every Information = Everything in the context of current technology advancement.

Web 3.0 is still evolving and it is going to encompass everything. One can not envision anything beyond web 3.0 in the current technology advancement.

Breaking all current technological capabilities Raymond Kurzweil, the inventor of OCR (Optical Character Reader) envisioned Web 4.0 as the Web OS with intelligent user agents acting parallel to human brain. Following figure illustrate the evolution of Web along with technology advancement and the semantics of social connections. Source: Nova Spivack and Radar Networks


The evolution of web has gone through phases as mentioned in this article and that has introduced numerous technologies and concepts in various areas; software, communication, hardware, marketing, advertising, content sharing, publicity, finance and many more.

In a way the World Wide Web has changed the way people were used to look at things earlier. I believe this evolution is never ending and moving towards excellence.


General information about online shopping

Online shopping is the process of purchasing goods and/or services from private or public sellers in real-time over the Internet. This type of retail is often referred to as: e-shop, e-store, internet shop, webshop, webstore or virtual store. Technically, the process is called business-to-consumer (B2C) purchasing. Business-to-business (B2B) sales are purchases made between two businesses.

The first World Wide Web server and browser was developed in 1990 and was available for use by consumers in 1991.

This form of shopping has become extremely popular in recent years. Some have criticized it for catering to the middle and upper classes because customers must have computer access and a bank account with a debit card to shop on the Internet.

To find products, shoppers can visit retailers’ websites directly or search a search engine for the product they are looking for. Once buyers find a product on the seller’s website, they complete a checkout process where they provide their delivery and payment information. Some stores allow frequent users to create a permanent account where they can store their information for future use. Buyers will usually receive an e-mail to confirm their purchase has been completed.

The most common form of payment for purchases is a credit card, but some online stores allow customers to pay in a variety of ways, such as debit cards, gift cards, money orders, wire transfers, mobile phone billing, and checks. Some websites will not allow consumers to pay with international credit cards, and some require both the billing and shipping addresses to be in the same country.

Once the buyer pays for their items, the goods and services can be delivered in a variety of ways. Digital media such as music, movies, and photos can be downloaded, and other items can be printed or e-mailed, such as gift certificates, coupons, and admission tickets that can be redeemed at the appropriate location. Some items are available for pick-up in stores at nearby locations. One of the more common forms of product delivery is shipping to customers’ addresses.

Shopping online has many benefits, one of which is the ease and convenience of being able to shop 24 hours a day from anywhere with internet access. Buyers are given complete product details with photos. Some stores even provide supplemental information such as how-to guides, demonstrations, instructions, background information, and procedures. Buyers can almost always exchange or return items if they have a problem. Some items are rated and have customer reviews that allow future buyers to see what others think of the product. Finally, a big advantage is the huge selection that is available and the ability to search for deals with different sellers.

Canadian online shopping is very popular and there are many sites that offer anything from Dell computers to car make-ups. There are Canadian online shopping malls that offer great variety with thousands of stores in hundreds of different categories. No matter where you are in the world, the Internet has what you are looking for

Will Near Field Communication Displace Other P2P Wireless Technologies?


NFC derives its roots from an existing technology but goes far to improve communication. The birth of this technology has been welcomed in the tech world and every stakeholder in the mobile communication ecosystem has been positively impacted. How and why thoughts abound in your mind, then read on.

How does NFC work?

NFC uses RFID to communicate between devices placed within 10 cm of each other. Among these devices, NFC enables one of them to act as an active device and emit a radio frequency that locks with an NFC enabled passive device or tag and extracts data from it. Passive devices can only hold data but are unable to verify it. On the other hand, active devices can be programmed to retain and deliver data when requested by other active devices.

Security measures such as encryption can be wrapped in communications. It is recommended to equip devices with anti-virus software to protect sensitive transactions.

Application of NFC

NFC clearly steals a march over other wireless forms of communication for reasons mentioned in the previous section of this article. It will be interesting to note the various uses to which this technology can be applied. However, a single continuous example has been described for discretion involving NFC in everyday life.

This example illustrates the amazing things a fictional character named Joe can do with his NFC-enabled smartphone. Joe, a social media consultant, lives in Newton, a leafy residential suburb of Boston, MA. He uses Amtrak to commute to Summer Street, Boston’s central business district. At the embarking station he wants to buy tickets to Boston and back. He spots an NFC-enabled vending machine and flashes his smartphone near it. After the initiation protocol, Joe proceeds to select and reserve the ticket and the confirmation appears on his smartphone. He boarded the train to Boston. At the request of the ticket checker (TC) he flashes the smartphone to the TC’s NFC enabled ticket verification machine which uses an active device to extract data from Joe’s phone. Reservations were confirmed and the gentlemen exchanged pleasantries as their devices a moment ago!

Joe got off at South Station and went to his office. On the way he saw a kiosk showing a Vangelis concert at the Boston Symphony Hall. He touches his NFC mobile phone to the NFC tag of the funky poster and retrieves data like date, time, participating musicians, theme, etc. on his phone. He reserves seats for concerts with his mobile phone using mobile communication (eg: SMS, Internet) to get complimentary tickets. He informed his wife through a text message inviting her to the concert and later for dinner.

At the entrance to the office, he touches the NFC-enabled door to open his NFC mobile phone.

Come lunchtime, and Joe uses a credit card stored on his phone to pay for the meal again using his smartphone using NFC tap-and-go at the POS register in the restaurant.

In the afternoon he met with members of his new client company. At the end of the meeting, Joe and his clients touch their phones together to exchange their business cards stored on their NFC mobile phones.

In the evening, Joe and his wife arrive at the Boston Symphony Hall where he touches his NFC mobile phone to an NFC enabled turnstile. Their reservation is confirmed and they are admitted in the hall.

After enjoying a lively concert, they head to Macy’s where Joe surprises his wife with a platinum necklace. They had a quiet candlelit dinner in Little Italy by the bay. Joe uses an NFC credit card on his phone to make payments in both cases. On the way back, they attend a street carnival in Quincy. Joe loses his smartphone in the commotion. Realizing, he immediately called his mobile service provider to report the theft of his mobile and requested them to cancel the NFC services on the phone. This will delete confidential information (especially financial related) from his mobile. Joe can reactivate NFC services when he returns his mobile phone

From the illustration one can observe that NFC can be used in everyday life.


NFC is a boon for mobile users who are discovering and bringing to life the myriad of applications that mobile can perform. From the days when a mobile was used only for making a call to now being used as a mobile wallet, a ticket booking system, a security system etc., the user has extracted a lot from the mobile. NFC provides the momentum to take this excitement to the next level.

NFC is secure, versatile and growing in popularity. Good luck bumping!

13 Social Media Trends and Opportunities for 2021

Everything You Need to Know About Social Media Marketing Trends Today!

The social media world has exploded with activity, and the social media trends of 2021 have changed since the Covid pandemic hit. Sure, it’s exciting, but it can also be overwhelming. You need to know how these changes affect your business—and how to capitalize on them to improve your marketing strategy.

So, we’re delving into the digital world to help you understand social media trends and opportunities for 2021.

1. Create a connection with live streaming

People need to be connected for personal and business reasons. When they can’t face to face, technology is more than happy to step in and bridge the gap. Thankfully, social media has come to the rescue with new trends during this pandemic. Live streaming, a popular medium that only got stronger in 2020, will play a significant role in 2021.

People have become accustomed to learning and exploring live streams as they reach out to satisfy their need for social interaction and engagement. So, one of our top tips based on social media trends for business in 2021…

Go live on social media at least once a week! And don’t forget to include a call to action that sells something of value to your audience’s end.

2. Give something away for free

Aside from nurturing relationships, one of the most valuable outcomes of maintaining a social media presence is list building. When you post on social media, you can use your call to action to build your list. Free offers help facilitate this process. Selling something of value doesn’t always mean an exchange of money. Your list is your treasure chest of gold—potential new customers and sales.

People will exchange their contact information to get something of value to them. For example, some people don’t have time to read every word of your blog post. A good blog article summary, or access to a hidden page on your site that provides summaries for your most important blog posts, may appeal to some of your prospects.

Other free offers may include the following:

  • Access slides from a conference

  • In-depth guides and tutorials

  • A glimpse behind the curtain

  • Free report

  • and more

3. Showcase your brand personality through video

Good news! There’s still plenty of room to build your online presence, attract audiences, and build loyalty with videos And before you say, “Really? Isn’t the YouTube market saturated?”, think again.

Yes it is true. YouTube has grown rapidly and has top channels for videos. But the door to branding is open through personality-driven content. Your unique personality—how you interact with your audience—sets you apart and helps you stand out. So, be authentic, be you and have fun! Use videos to find and grow your tribe!

And don’t stop with YouTube. Create your niche on other video channels. Here’s a list to get you started!

  • IGTV

  • Instagram Reels

  • Twitter Fleet – New in 2021!

  • Facebook

  • Pinterest

  • tick tock

  • Snapchat

4. Stand out on LinkedIn and Instagram with carousels

Let’s keep rolling in the 2021 social media trends in marketing with engaging, movement-focused content ideas! Why settle for static LinkedIn posts when you can jazz it up with Carousel? That’s right! You can create and publish entertaining slide shows! They allow you to stand out in a sea of ​​text-based LinkedIn posts and build awareness for your company page.

Not to be confused with LinkedIn carousel ads, you publish carousel posts for free. These posts grab attention and generate interest in eye-catching, dynamic visual displays that take up more real estate in a feed. So be sure to include a clear call to action at the end!

Also, Instagram users get a huge advantage by using carousels in their feed. If a user doesn’t like the lead image and scrolls past it, the second image appears in their feed. This gives you a second chance to gain engagement.

Ideas for content to share on LinkedIn Carousel posts

  • Statistics, infographics and numbers

  • Framework and step-by-step, how-to instructions

  • Actionable business tips and lessons

  • Conference slides and event content

  • Snippets from your blog/list post

5. Email and e-news are still tried and true methods

Tell your audience when you post something new: “This blog is going viral!” Yes, email and e-newsletters are still the best way to get attention for your articles and blog posts. So, keep growing that list! Then use social media to highlight content your audience loves.

To gain permission-based customer list opt-ins, use creative calls to action (CTAs) that encourage your prospects to trade their contact information for tips, how-to instructions, and entertainment.

With so many new social media trends, it can be difficult to determine how to maximize their impact. Knowing that these social media trends exist for business and how to use them to boost your strategy are two distinct concepts!

Let’s explore some of the ways you can use social media marketing for your business!

6. Using links vs. audio-visual content

Whenever possible, use video, images and audio to draw attention to social media platforms rather than redirecting them to your published content. Social channels want to put people where they can influence them with advertisers’ campaigns.

Of course, you want them to reach your content, sign up for your freebies, and more. Here’s a simple social media trend 2021 trick: Try using the first comment below your post to post your link!

7. Engage with your tribe through social media comments

Respond to comments on your social media content in a timely fashion. If people take the time to engage with you on social media, doesn’t it mean engaging with them? This is the point, after all!

Don’t allow comments on your post to sit unaddressed. When you let your prospects down, you risk losing their attention entirely. If you engage with them, it encourages future engagement that leads to relationships, trust and sales!

8. It’s all about timing

Traffic for your social media posts depends on the first 10 minutes of the hour you post the content. Tag people and talk to increase traffic flow, especially if it’s a live-streaming event. If you conduct a live stream every week, do it on the same day at the same time every week That way, your audience can determine it in their actions.

Are you presenting a one-time live stream? Get the word multiple times in advance through different channels. Post your event details in advance via email, e-newsletter and post. If you have connections with people who support your efforts, maximize those connections and ask them to spread the word.

9. The power of social media comments and bookmarks

One of your responsibilities to your audience is to create helpful content. Regardless of your industry, your audience looks to you for guidance, expertise and resources. You can’t create it all, so you need to find reputable sources to share content with Social bookmarking sites provide a way to do just that!

And with the idea of ​​eliminating likes as social media platform toys (eg, Facebook, Instagram), people need to find other ways to approve posts they like or find helpful.

Arguably, Instagram is one of the most popular visual-focused social media trends for businesses and has become increasingly influential in marketing. To build brand awareness, encourage people to save your Instagram posts (instead of just “liking” them). Use a call to action in your images and text. A simple “bookmark it!” Tickets may be

How can your business benefit from these savings?

7 Benefits of Social Media Bookmarks

  • Save and organize the resources you want to focus on next.

  • Share resources with your team or visitors.

  • Tag (label) content for easy referencing and searchability.

  • Create backlinks from social media bookmarks to your website.

  • Drive traffic to your website. (People find and click on content saved by others on their bookmarking sites.)

  • Promote mentions you receive from others (bookmark articles that mention you and your content).

  • Take advantage of SEO. (Search engines often include bookmarks in their search results.)

10. Ask questions to encourage engagement on social media posts

Want to encourage discussion and engagement on social media? To open the door to communication, remember the power of questions. Make it interesting. It helps if you pose a provocative question that gets people to share their thoughts. A vague “yes/no” question such as “Agree?” Does not generate discussion.

Examples of discussion-stimulating questions

  • I am curious. Do you have a story to share about your experience with _____? (Fill in the blanks.)

  • How have you benefited from ________? (Fill in the blanks.)

  • When was the last time you were _________? (Fill in the blanks.)

  • What is your favorite memory of ________? (Fill in the blanks.)

  • Do you think there is a chance that _______? What leads you to that conclusion? (Fill in the blanks.)

11. Ego baiting

I know… that sounds pretty loaded. But think about it. Influencers and industry leaders enjoy the spotlight. If they don’t, they won’t be influential. Tag one or more influencers in your post and ask them to share it.

12. Social Media Commerce

Social media has become increasingly more influential in consumer shopping choices. And some platforms have capitalized on this new social media trend by introducing shopping carts. Your customers can investigate and buy your products and services without ever leaving the social media platform

Again, social media platforms want users to stay with them as long as possible. Feel free to take advantage of the tools they offer It’s a win-win for you and the platform.

13. Humanized Brands – The Power of Authenticity

And, finally, you can notice this growing trend. People value transparency and authenticity in their relationships – and that ideal is spilling over into how they feel about the brands they support.

Social media marketing trends 2021 predictions from professionals indicate that your audience wants to know who you are and what you stand for. And businesses that align themselves with socially conscious themes are viewed more favorably by their customers

Lean into yourself and let your light shine. Tell your story. You are you, and there is a tribe waiting to meet and support you and your business!

Companies that provide printing services in Dubai

Supervision of printing industry

Like other industries, the printing industry also falls under the auspices of the Dubai Chamber of Commerce and Industry (DCCI). As a result, DCCI formed the Printing and Publishing Group to streamline printing services and simultaneously enrich it to address emerging issues. An annual celebration of successful companies in the sector takes place during the Dubai International Print Awards (DIPA).

Major printing services offered in Dubai

Offset printing

This is a popular printing method that involves transferring full-color images from a plate to a rubber blanket, then onto the desired paper. Complete products include stationery, catalogues, magazines, books, brochures, newspapers and books.

Flexographic printing

Printing presses employing this technology operate a flexible letterpress that benefits from the ability to print on a wide variety of surfaces such as metal films, laminated materials, synthetic materials as well as paper. Packaging materials, self-adhesive labels, wallpaper, kitchen utensils and wrappers compose some of the items printed with this technology.

Security printing

For those who require specific identification or some form of protection for desired items, then security printing is a welcome service. Products that fit into this category are election papers, stock exchange bonds passports, identity cards, visa papers, lottery tickets, cheques, share certificates, air tickets and gift vouchers.

Digital printing

With so much information stored and transmitted in digital format, print services that can access digital information and print it directly. The printers implemented here can also print on different substrates. You get quality photos, commercial print products (for sales or marketing initiatives), architectural products and art materials.

Some printing service providers

Emirates Printing Press (EPP)

Collecting more than 200 million pages printed every month, EPP caters to the bulk of the printing needs of many individuals and reputed organizations. Their merchandise includes directories, brochures, annual reports, magazines and books. What’s more, EPP presents other related services such as packaging, binding, lamination and varnishing within the same building. EPP’s client list includes Qatar Airways, Emirates Airlines and Burj Al Arab.

Rakam International

This company specializes in bespoke ribbon and label printing, but also covers additional printing services With ISO certification and print award nominations (especially for their flexographic printing), Rakam International currently serves many companies in Dubai and beyond. Banks, pharmaceutical companies, malls, local governments and the fast-moving consumer goods industry are notable clients of the firm.

Pentown Paper Products

Penttown has an array of quality services and products. From offset printing to digital printing, packaging, advertising and even exhibition stands as well as vehicle graphics. This impressive portfolio has attracted companies like Hampton International, International Cricket Council, LG and Canon. Their service saw them win a DIPA award in 2014 for excellence in digital printing.

Spectrum UAE Limited

They pride themselves on competitive rates, unmatched customer service and quality. Services offered on the spectrum range from education, advertising, public relations, finance, publishing and media-related printing solutions. Organizations serving the spectrum include Al Arabi Travel, Baraka Media and Get Well Network to name a few.

Conclusion: What to look for

Here are some guidelines to help you while sourcing for printing companies in Dubai. Prioritizing quality, speed of product output, cost effectiveness, privacy and customer service is paramount. Other valuable markers are the unique services offered by the printing company and the ability to implement other printing related services under one roof