Month: December 2005

Dream Come True?

Yeah maybe I’m brainwashed and sucked in – but I don’t care. I’ve read up on the other side but I know where I stand.

Every next thing Google creates solves real problems and creates real value – ‘real’ meaning I FEEL IT. And I am sure I am not the only one.

I’ve done case studies on their best business practices and read more than enough about them elsewhere… but there must be something MORE… more than just good PR because I imagine my ideal work culture there without ever gotten anywhere near…

I don’t think I’m making this up… there are signs! Example, this alone tells me they value innovation like nothing else – Talk about rapid prototyping (a la 3M and IDEO)… Google Labs is amazing!

Ok, read this and tell me – so what if you help people and make a buck? Google deserves every cent.

My dream is to LIVE on creating value – by solving real problems and seeing people happier as a result.

And the reality starts with the little Project Bazooka, where everything we do with the project MUST create real value, where we work smart, keep trying new things to see what works, where anyone touched by the organisation and/or its products and services feel really smile, where the lines between work and play blur…

Which reminds me, I have to get back to work =P
Sunday will be important.

The pre-camp that was…

I can’t be bothered to write about it now. Which means I might never do so. But it is too important an experience…! I summarise a bit-lah ok?

In the span of 3 days at YMCA in Brickfields, we

  • Squeezed into many critical thinking exercises
  • Launched into small debates on issues which affect us
  • Ate too much indian food
  • Went through Brickfields as though we were blind people who regained sight
  • Got exposed to various frameworks of understanding

We also went to Katagender’s Jamming Violence Against Women, where I ran into some Troubaganger people, who have been so kind to have Project Bazooka Launch with their gig this Sunday.

Here is a piece of art I liked very much, especially the texture. It was at the Katagender event.

Yea we did a bit of not-so-fun stuff as well, which perhaps gives good contrast to the fun stuff. I remember:

  • My ego bashed up
  • Brain pushed a bit over the limit
  • Reminded of being culturally sensitive
  • Being a huge jerk
  • Semi-sleeptalking gibberish in front of everyone
  • Worrying too much about Project Bazooka
  • Making a connection with some humans (which is rare)

It has always amused me how our everyday Malaysian neighbour can be as alien to us as the faraway gweilou. In other ways, we can be so much the same.

There were 9 other aliens who are more like friends now… Intelligent, forward-thinking, and initiated in their own ways, they have most interesting stories to tell about their lives, which I will REVEAL!! MUAHAHAHA justkiddin. I will just reveal a bit here –

In the center is Nina, who works in the WWF as a wrestler. Sasha the blacksmith from Jerantut peeps into the side:

Special thanks to Brian Lariche for candor, and the other partcicipants for tolerance. All of you are great company – looking forward to the Phillipines!!

This is what I am talking about!

Read this article from Fast Company.

Who says you can’t solve social problems AND make money at the same time? EVERYONE PROFITS when you solve real problems effeciently…

Many get the impression if you do loads of charity work you don’t make money, or if you make loads of money somebody loses… we even have to call some organisations ‘not-for-profit organisations’! Does that make them ‘for-breakeven organisations’? Would a better term be ‘not-solely-for-personal-profit’ organisation? (seems that’s what every company wants to be these days haha)

Let’s blur the lines a little, and I’m not talking about pocketing RM1,000 out of the RM10,000 you raised for charity… I am talking about solving the intial problem, and getting paid – That, is priceless.

TV – Use with care

I dislike being didactic but in response to some feedback about being on TV, I must say something on behalf of no one but myself.

Unless you are compensated for your time OR you have good reasons to do so, why should anyone want to be on TV?

Being on TV does NOT get you anywhere, unless you intend to get somewhere in the first place – and your specific TV stint helps. (Eg. You want to fast-track your career so and you perform well on Apprentice). It works the same if you can take your TV appearance further (eg. After appearing on BBC as an expert, you charge higher consultant fees).

If you get on TV for the sake of doing so, you may be an ad for a product that doesn’t exist. People will forget you after they turn the channel.

I didn’t enjoy being on TV mostly because I am am naturally TV unfriendly. Also, I am more warm to the idea of being known for my efforts touching someone else’s life, than through someone else’s judgement from a light-emitting screen.

What a silly story!

One fine day… music will be similar to busking on the street, except musicians busk seamlessly to the entire world, 24/7.

Consumers can listen all they want as long as they want, anytime – but if the music makes a real connection people, musicians can expect to be repaid in more

1. paid support for live performances
2. paid support of value-added products (signed Tshirt, art piece etc)
3. royalties from those who use their music for commercial purposes

The important distribution and marketing channels will decentralise – podcasts, peer generated download charts etc will have more impact on consumer choice compared to MTV.

There will be less standardised, commercial music (where no top 20% of artists earning 80% of all the money), and more music ‘customised’ for the people (where more small guys make more money)

Happy endings? Less people in the middle of the value chain taking a cut, we, the consumers at one end, and the musicians on the other, get more – except for those who are caught in the middle! – publishers, big name superstars etc

//

Was that ‘silly’? It probably is. Read this anyhow!. I REALLY recommend it.

Want another silly story? Read about the current music industry! See the Project Bazooka newsfeed

Must… survive…

YuRi said I looked like batman. I know it isn’t my pecs, so it has to be my new specs. No one else has seen it really, so I’ll post a pic here.

I’ll probably not see all of you for a bit too. I’m leaving for the pre-camp for the British Council thingy tomorrow morning!

Have to compile a presentation on Vietnam’s geography, history, politics, and economy + coordinate Project Bazooka volunteers + get a new web front done by then.

I will be back on Monday to attend a workshop for HSBC Young Entrepreneur Award – I’m one out of 20 business plans in Round Two. If I make the last 5, I can have a shot at RM10,000!

That aside, organising Bazooka promotion at Rock the World 6 on Saturday, and our joint launch event Sunday should keep me busy…

See you guys the week after!

Destroy to Create

Late into the night… in the music studio YuRi works in, it was clear. This Bazooka website sucks. It really sucks.

WHY WASN’T I THINKING?? It looks like every next website – wannabe slick – tried and tested rules – to look professional – Everything about the website DOES NOT REPRESENT what project bazooka is about!!! It’s too boring – even for myself to bother reading. Ugh.

Through YuRi’s monk-like concentration on his work at hand, gave me what looked like a nod.

Anyhow, I am tearing it down today to put up something REAL… till somebody can help us build a mind blowing piece.

Any web developers/ designers out there adept at WordPress (or any open source CMS) and CSS? I want to pair you up with an artist who creates with heart, and you two can make what will be the most REAL website anyone has ever seen – functional and honest!!

Oh well, we learn as we go.

At least the namecards and infokits turned out OK. Will need to give em to some important people this evening.

Note: Be more careful in naming

We called it ‘The Wall’… an 8ft X 8ft glass wall where we map out all our thoughts and discuss Bazooka stuff. Here is a picture of it. I stayed out of the picture because I looked extra short beside ‘The Wall’.

the wall

What you see on the picture is the birth of Project Bazooka. At the time, we didn’t even have a name for it! We just knew it had to be done – and SOON… Because I was going to shamelessly (term inspired by SaerZe) blast it on national TV…

shameless

… which I did! Here is a pic of Ferhad, reality show winner Vernon, and EMI head of domestic department En.Arzmy looking on in horror.

Anyways, back to “The Wall”, and why we named it.

It wasn’t inspiration from Pink Floyd. We just couldn’t think of a better name for a wall. However, it just occured to me, ‘The Wall’ is also a Vietnam Veteran’s Memorial in Washington DC. Which is fine, if you don’t intend to scribble all over it.

I hope just the name ‘Bazooka’ turns out OK…