Author Archives: MoneyMan

RIM Productivity Apps – Focus on Docs To Go/Evernote

I write this as a RIM lover! They have their goods and bads; strengths and weaknesses; and this notion applies to everything on earth! Currently, RIM has a very bad weakness in apps for its platform.

I own a BlackBerry PlayBook and I’ve pretty much turned it into a personal computer – I do almost everything on it, but a lot of times I’m forced to circumvent around certain weaknesses, because majority of those apps are not made equal with similar ones on other platforms. I recently started sideloading apps onto my PlayBook just out of curiousty to see what theh can do and I’ve noticed that a huge difference exists between apps on BlackBerry and those on Android. Evernote is one good example. Docs To Go has been a great companion until I discovered Kingsoft Office; if you’ve used the PlayBook’s native Docs To Go, you will know that it’s a complete crap, and one that RIM should not tout as a productivity app. I can somehow reason that the third party apps’ capabilities depend largely on the author’s preference, but what about a native app like the Docs To Go? You only need to give Kingsoft Office a try to realise how RIM is creating a problem for itself by associating its platform with productivity. I don’t buy that claim if I cannot perform a simple task of inserting a row or column in an Excel file.

Consumers hardly give second chances for a fundamental flaw of this nature and I’m one of those still rooting for this company to succeed because they are more than capable, but aee failing to reach their full potential. Hopefully, BB10 will help address most of these problems. RIM still has a long way to go with regards to apps and functionality; or else they will be feeding their lunch to Android. As I said previously, sideload the Kingsoft Office and open it side-by-side with the mediocre PlayBook’s native Docs To Go; then you will know why I feel some important apps on BlackBerry are below par. Remember that they need to be above par to be able to succeed in the highly competitive mobile device marketplace. They need to do extraordinary things to dig themselves out from the hole they are in and I hope they already know the issues that users/consumers have and are working towards fixing them in the upcoming BB10 platform. I continue to be a BB fan by choice and I wish them success!

Money Man

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Wonderful Gift of Presidential Lunch for Romney

Obama maintains his Commander-in-Chief calmness as usual. Inviting an undeserving Romney to the White House was very gracious on Obama’s part, after all the outrageous insults from Romney during the campaign season. It’s probably Romnney’s luckiest day; afterall, he gets to go on a free tour/excursion of the White House and see the Presidential desk, staff, office, Rose Garden, Lincoln room e.t.c. and finally have the butler show him his room in the WH Boys’ Quarter (in case he plans to stay the night).

More importantly, he will get to enjoy being one of the 47% group that he spitefully condemned during his campaign fundraiser; afterall, he was fed with Presidential Lunch too and it gets paid for by the taxpayers!

I say this all the time about Romney; it’s very scary to imagine that he could have ended up in the White House, even though, I can still sleep easy with just a lunch visit or even an overnight visit. This piece is going to be the last negative article I will write about Mitt Romney unless he says something that compels me to voice out again. Mitt Romney appears to be a gentlemen, but has had difficulty establishing for himself what he is about. God will help him!

Long Live the King and Long Live Obama for America!

Money Man

RIM’s Roller-coaster

For starters, Research In Motion is in this smartphone battle to win it. While some analysts just simply cluessly regurgitate what they read or hear from equally clueless analysts without investing sometime to at least research them; other big time analysts/hedge fund managers have a huge vested interest in RIM’s downfall. They are either already betting or planning to bet against the stock prices positive movement. This can be a huge bet and the only way to get it right is to engage in some manipulative analysis of the market/business performance. Unfortunately, RIM has become a good moving target for these guys, because its situation perfectly fits into their bill.

Misek is just one of many folks that take part in deliberately redefining what the stock market is; that is, from a true market that was driven by genuine market fundamentals (as we used to know it in those days) into a market defined by artificial forces orchestrated by a group of well coordinated financial syndicate, with the sole intent of driving the market where they want it. Essentially, ordinary investors become gamblers by innocently taking part in this stock market – meaning you could win big, if you’re lucky or lose everything if you play into their hands. Mr. Misek knows too well how this works and he knows the full impact of comments made by him. Mr. Misek is also not the only one doing this, it is a systemic problem.

In the midst of all these overwhelming negativity, I silently hope that RIM pulls this off with the launch of BB10. I’m very certain that the sentiment would be reversed and all these guys will be forced to eat their words. Most importantly, be cautious out there and take research notes/analysis with a grain of salt. To put it simply; they don’t have any clue, they just go with the flow. Hopefully, the BB10 flow will drag them along.

Money Man

The Real Romney

Mitt Romney put up a performance I never expected.  He lost big, sure, but he still picked up 206 Electoral College votes and garnered in excess of 59 million popular votes (still counting as of the time of writing this). I consider that respectable, considering that this guy had many ridiculous missteps during the primaries and general election seasons. Personally, I expected the electorates to be unforgiving to most of those missteps, simply because I see them as being fundamental definitions of what Romney is about. But of course, I respect that people moved on and still voted for him in that magnitude.

Romney is a guy you would normally want to like, but he makes it almost impossible. This guy changes his stance almost everytime he blinks, which is ridiculous, considering he was judged the winner of the first debate based on this pretext. Throughout the debate, I religiously followed the polls and I look at Romney and what he stood for, but I didn’t get it. How come the polls were so close, given that this guy almost knew anything about running a country? He was notorious for opening his mouth and just uttering whatever came out of it, with little or no thinking. Most recently, he had the gut to blame his loss on Obama’s “gift” to minorities, really? How could he say such a thing for God’s sake? Has he totally lost his mind? It’s so scary to think Americans could have voted for this thing in a heartbeat.  He fails to talk about how he influenced his CEO friends to threaten employees who don’t vote for him and he used this to somehow reinforce his 47% claim. I sometimes joke to my wife that Romney is just as clueless as Palin, but he maintains a slight upper hand. He sure owes the minorities a public apology!

Money Man

Polarizing The American Electorate

I’m sure a lot of people will be very familiar with the term “polarizing” more often than not.  That’s a term that has been used many over the course of Obama’s candidacy back in 2008 and during his presidency up until now.  A very thin line separates “divisive” and “polarizing”, but what people fail to point out at times is the fact that if you’re divisive, you’re most likely in control and are deliberately doing it for gains; while on the other hand, you’re totally powerless when you’re seen as being “polarizing”.  Most times, this happens because of certain circumstances and of course, in Obama’s case, race is a huge factor.

The media likes to spin this as much as they like and sometimes, it’s erroneously implied that he deliberately created a polarizing figure in himself.  That’s totally false!  The Republicans know this problem exists and they sure take every advantage of it, which of course is expected in politics.  What’s unusual is how this party uses this.  The Republican party has some conservative ideologies that I connect with and appreciate; but on the flip side, they have some outrageously crazy ideologies that drive me nuts!

It remains to be seen how much longer the Republican Party will be in existence, especially with their recent loss to Barack Obama.  As long as they continue to allow the likes of Rush Limbaugh, Sarah Palin, Lou Dobbs and the Tea Party to profess extremism and shape the party into that perceived to be anti-immigrant, racist and hateful; they will have a long way to go.  Personally, I don’t agree with everything the President has done in the last four years, but hey, that’s what life is all about.  What I find disgusting is the type of conservatism that has become the signature of this Republican party; they have become so reliant on negative enthusiasm or racial bias to win an election? In all I’ve written above, I have to acknowledge that this is not what every Republican out there is about, but it’s important for them to join in reshaping the party and bringing some sanity.  Times have changed; this is no longer 1980 or 1988 when a simple war-mongering tactic could win elections – I recall I used to also get very excited whenever America was going to war with the enemy; those brainwashing hardly work these days, except for Bush Jr. whom we all know hardly won in his two elections.

Money Man

Republicans Turning Libya into Benghazi-Gate

The Republicans are actually drawing some remarkable attention about Benghazi. This could become a make or break issue for either candidate come November 6. It’s not a coincidence that the GOP has ramped up their criticism of Obama’s handling of the attack in the last few days to set a stage for Romney in the upcoming Presidential Debate. This looks to be a good area for Romney to exploit during the debate, but Obama will need to be extra-creative to fend off this onslaught. I trust the Obama campaign knows the challenge this creates and the potentially damaging effect it could have on Obama’s reelection. I can only hope that the Democrats will be able to make ineffective the onslaught of the Romney campaign.

The Predicament of an African-American President

It’s no longer news that President Obama was considered the loser in the first Presidential debate.  Several reasons have been sighted for his below-expectation performance and they include “not himself”, “too soft on Romney”, “not forceful” and so on and so forth.  Fast-forward to the second debate where he tried to incorporate all those things that were missing out during the first one and lo and behold, the story was different; he obviously performed better, but has been called “angry”, “aggressive”, “edgy” and all sorts of other names. The interesting thing here is that the Republicans have obviously tried to use Obama’s strength to paint him as being weak.  I really enjoy following all these political tactics adopted by both parties, but I can’t come to terms with the callousness of certain policies the Republican party have hung unto for the longest time and it annoys me that there is no willingness on their part to at least modify this to at least make it a fun party.  I don’t know what it will take to effect a turnaround – maybe another loss!

Obama and the Super-Powers

It seems President Obama may have mis-calculated or under-estimated the effectiveness of the Republican superpowers.  How else can you imagine that CEOs will threaten their staff to vote for Romney or face the consequence if Barack Obama gets re-elected – what a shame!

It’s amazing that Romney can sow that seed and encourage his allies to run with it.  I pity those helpless employees who for obvious reasons won’t want to throw caution to the wind to experiment what another four years of Obama presidency would look like – they are simply doing this to keep their jobs and who would blame them, given the threats?  What’s hard to believe is how and why this could happen in America.  No, it is very legal, but disgusting.  Romney should be very ashamed for even uttering something this controversial.

I hope voters will proceed with caution and not allow themselves to be suppressed in expressing their preference.

A Genuine Appeal to RIM

It’s no news that there have been discussions and calls for more Apps for RIM‘s ecosystem.  Why does someone need 600,000 apps?  Don’t get me wrong, if there are that many apps available, so be it – my issue with apps count is that majority of the 600k apps will be repetitive and for all I care, a good percentage of them may be junks!
In my humble opinion, I think RIM is still being punished on its PlayBook sales because the very important and popular apps are still missing.  Even on my part, while playing around with a friend’s iPad, I couldn’t help feeling that I was missing something important that a tablet should be able to do – I saw apps like Skype, Rebtel, Magijack and Netflix at work on the iPad; and I thought to myself that something is wrong somewhere.  By no chance did I feel that I wanted the hardware that iPad stood for.  Let me be clear here; if RIM is able rally around developers and exceed the 600k mark that Apple has set, they will most likely still not get the desired sales – not until they bring in the popular ones that majority use. So, RIM, I’m appealing that you perfect the current experience by paying to have these apps developed for the platform. You can easily tell that I’m a big fan!
Bring on the above-mentioned apps and other popular ones and prove me wrong if sales of the PlayBook does not skyrocket – it’s already a great product, but make it more appealing please! As I love to say: RIM’s destiny is in RIM’s hands.
MoneyMan.

Politics and Us

I like to refer to the situation as We and Them sometimes, and what I mean by that is We and the Politicians. We like to blame them all the time when things go wrong in our societies, when in actual fact we made that choice and the hand-writing is always boldly written on the wall. Sometimes of course, we hold expectations that are too high, forgetting that these guys are just human like us too – given similar situations with positions reversed, we’ll probably be worse.

We should be wary of a politician promising to do better than the incumbent. The truth is he may actually be better, but it’s always a probability thing. Another truth we need to know is that, for the most part, these guys always try to satisfy us, but the society is very complex. My long and short story is that we should endeavor to do our part in the society too and not leave all to the politicians; they are just one piece of the puzzle.