The Desert Sun Podcast #013

Once again I am joined by Mike in Switzerland, with the recording this time taking place in his mountaintop fortress. In this episode we talk about corporate HR and the blurring of the line between work and private life.

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3 thoughts on “The Desert Sun Podcast #013

  1. Cool – was watching his video yesterday with Forgotten Weapons. Now that would be a cross over…

  2. Only just got round to listening to this. A couple of comments

    1. Instagram *is* owned by Facebook. I think they’re as aware as you that they’re basically this year’s MySpace, so in common with other tech giants do tend to buy the up and coming thing when possible in order to try and stay ahead of the game. WhatsApp is also owned by Facebook but the latest is they’re going to consolidate it with Facebook Messenger.

    2. Google is indeed mainly an advertising company that did well with its first product and built its success from that. Almost all of its current successful ventures have been acquisitions: Android, YouTube, DoubleClick and others. They do tend to be pretty good at expanding the scale of their acquisitions however and have had some good levels of success doing that (YouTube and Android for example are unlikely to have become half as big as they did after Google bought them). They’re also very hot at machine learning at the moment which is touted as the next big thing in tech and may well be. There are a lot of good and bad lessons to learn from them I think, but as you say they’re not really representative of anything apart from well-financed large big tech companies.

    3. The Lucozade reformulation was prompted by legislative changes (i.e. the “sugar tax”) pushed by fake charities like Public Health England, AFAIK rather than as a result of pressure from twitter mobs. I think Lucozade, as a brand focused on “sports” whose customers might care about the “healthiness” of their drink, probably made the mistake of thinking their customers actually cared more about “their health” (or at least the perception of the healthiness of Lucozade) than the taste of their product. Other drinks manufacturers confronted with the sugar tax just reduced the portion size of the sugar versions of their drinks, so they wouldn’t have to change the price. There has been less uproar from the general public than I would hope but there’s a reason that “shrinkflation” works so I guess it’s not particularly surprising.

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