Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Binging on Gadgets

Went to Sum Lin (not sure of spellling) bldg as singaporean friends recommended for the best prices of laptops and other electronics I had been dreaming of purchasing a tiny laptop like the toshiba libretto although a batchmate based also in singapore recommended a Sony Vaio
Off to the mall I went and upon entry spotted very small versions of camcorders. I was just curious on how much these cost so I asked but actually ended up buying the smallest version, which is the Fisher cameracorder (stills/DVD).

The only gadget I really planned to buy was an I-Pod Nano similar to what Arnold showed me when I had dinner with him and edna a few days prior to my trip. He mentioned that the price was a bit lower than that in manila. I went straight to the Apple Center at Wheelock Center (Orchard). I drooled over the latest models specially of the Ipod Photo and Video but my budget was just for a 2bg nano. The stocks really went very fast for as I was deciding on which color and model to get, I noticed some immediately got out of stock.

I decided to get the black since it was not common. Those few mins of indecision just left me with the white nano ( I got it lest it disappears at once. Tony, a British business colleague wanted to buy a nano the following day but the stocks were gone and waiting to be replenished.

When I went up the bldg to check on the laptops, I noticed that the best bet would be the tiny sony vaio. The price though was too dear for me. There was a small tablet type but it was a celeron so a no no for the heavy user moi.

I ended up though with a twinhead.

Two regrets - I should have bought the ipon video and sony vaio, I just needed to control my expenses so I guess those two will remain a dream purchase )

Sunday, November 13, 2005

Help SMEs sell online, industry urged

Help SMEs sell online, industry urged
By Chin Wong

A leading supporter of information technology last week urged theindustry to prepare a detailed guide to electronic commerce that small-and medium-scale enterprises can use to begin selling their productsonline.

At a trade show last week, Senator Mar Roxas told board members of thePhilippine Internet Commerce Society (PICS) they need to help moresmall- and medium-sized companies sell their products in cyberspace,whether this is on locally developed networks or on internationalportals such as e-Bay. "Internet commerce is not a goal in itself, it's a tool," Roxas said ata break during last week's 4th National E-Commerce Congress. "You guys are focusing on Internet commerce per se. I want to get these SMEs tocome into this space. Whether it is 'Philippine space' or foreign spaceis irrelevant to them because their job is to sell their pili nuts." Roxas urged the PICS to produce an informative and easy-to-followflowchart that SMEs can use to get started.

"What I want from you is a to-do menu that I can give to an SME so thatwhen I go around, I can show it to Mila's Pili or Ormoc PrincessPineapple or Kapitan Herbs in Tagaytay," Roxas said. The flowchart would specify what options are available, where SMEs cango depending on their size, what they can do to promote their productsonline, and how much they can expect to pay and be paid, the senatorsaid. Roxas said the e-commerce guide for SMEs should include anecdotal information showing what approaches work or do not work.

For her part, Mary Anne Tolentino, PICS president, committed tocompleting the guidelines by January 2006. At the same meeting, Roxas also asked PICS members to check ife-government initiatives, particularly at the Department of Trade andIndustry, were really useful to companies. "Visit the DTI Web site and try to register a business. Let's look atthese e-government initiatives and see which ones have the most impact.Those that don't, maybe we can set aside first," Roxas said.

On the other hand, those that really help companies improve theirbusinesses should get priority to funding, he added. Roxas expressed impatience over the inability of the DTI and theSecurities and Exchange Commission to work using a common database ofcompanies.

At the same meeting, Commission on Information and TechnologyCommissioner Dondi Mapa said this was the goal of the PhilippineBusiness Registry Project that recently received P200 million infunding. Roxas, however, said the government didn't need to wait for thecompletion of the registry project to make this happen. "This is just a complicated mail merge," Roxas said. "Is it a realproblem, or is it a turf problem?"

SME IT Excellence Award

For the third straight year, PICS also handed out awards to small- andmedium-sized companies that used IT and the Internet to improve theirbusiness operations and realized gains in profits, efficiency, andcustomer and supplier relationships.

A cosmetics company, VMV Hypoallergenics, won the SME IT ExcellenceAward, besting 30 nominees. At the ceremony, Laura Verallo de Bertotto, said for most SMEs, IT canbe intimidating but this doesn't have to be the case. "We've chosen things that may not be so fancy or advanced, but it'sreally not that intimidating if you get something off-the-shelf that'stried and trusted," she said, noting that her company runs on a network of Apple Macintosh computers.

Other winners were: Asia Pacific College, for outstanding IT SME ininnovation and learning and outstanding IT SME in effectiveness andefficiency in internal processes; and, for outstanding ITSME in financial measurements. VMV also won an award for outstanding customer orientation and online orelectronic service.

A week in Singapore for business and more

Had been here in Singapore since Monday to attend the Safety and Security exhibtion at the Singapore Expo grounds since for the first time, the product I am distributing in the Phils, will be joining such an event. All the Asian distributors arrived to provide support (China, India, Taiwan, Thailand, Indonesia).

The Philippine Delegation, four of us, all stayed at Carlton Hotel at the financial district of Singapore.

It was actually a bad time for me for I had been having a bad asthma attack before I left Manila. I was not able to take my meal in the plane for I just slept through the trip. As usual it was very warm in Singapore and I guess what worsened my asthmatic condition was our walking around the hotel under the heat of the sun. We couldnt check in immediately since our rooms were still being made.

We wanted to take lunch and buy some food supplies so bernadette and kenneth wanted to walk around. If it were up to me I would have just stayed inside the hotel.

After checking in, I really needed to rest. I was supposed to meet Chow Boon, another Singaporean colleague but I guess bernadette had difficulty waking me up. I had no sleep prior to this day for I had to pack after a major event at mega mall.

The following day, I felt a bit better and we motored all the way to the expo for the opening. The following day I didnt attend for I preferred to rest. I kept coughing the day before, after all the actitivities - US Embassy sponsored cocktails and a meeting with Tyron principals.

Its past 4am right now, just woke up to repack my luggage. Will post again the continuation when I reach manila.