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How's It Going So Far? 11 July 2001 Edition
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The world's newswires are abuzz this morning with the latest rankings released by the United Nations in which countries are ranked by a number of criteria.

A while back we saw NZ tumble down the list of great places and vibrant economies (as ranked by the OECD) to sit somewhere next to turkey and some third-world countries -- so how are we doing now?

Well, in terms of our performance in the knowledge economy we're 15th -- miles behind the leaders which are Finland, the USA, Sweden and Japan. No surprise?

But, if our politicians are to be believed, that can be forgiven because NZ is such a nice place to live -- right?

Well maybe not if the UN report is anything to go by.

We're now ranked 19th -- one place ahead of Italy and again, well behind the leaders Norway, Australia and Canada.

Well to be quite frank, I'm siding with Paul Swain -- I don't believe these reports are at all accurate.

For instance, how can it be that Israel has been ranked 18th in terms of aspects of its technology use -- three places behind us? And why is Ireland way down at number 13, just two places ahead of us?

There are two articles online today that you should read which relate to this subject. One by The NZ Herald and the other by The Register.

Only Better Mousetraps Are Worthwhile
There's more fallout this week on the demise of "Yippee" -- the local shareware repository that soaked up well over a million dollars of funding before crumbling into a heap after the dot-com implosion.

According to reports, that $1 million was spent on building the company's website -- uh???

What's more, the company also received help from HP which supposedly made it "Eligible for up to $3.6 million worth of free computer equipment."

What were these guys thinking?

How on earth can you spend a million dollars on a website designed to provide access to just a few thousand shareware titles?

Readers Say
(updated hourly)
From Yesterday...

  • Intellectual oxymoron... - Brian
  • Bad Analogy... - Nigel
  • Have Your Say

    More importantly -- why would you want to go out and re-invent the wheel in a manner which appeared to offer no benefits over the service offered by market leaders like Tucows?

    Before anyone launches into an online business -- please stop and consider the basics.

    • What are you doing that makes YOUR offering sufficiently better than your competition that people will swap or choose you?
    • Where is your revenue going to come from?
    • Are you spending your valuable capital wisely and watching your pennies?

    Hell, I'm no Bill Gates or Richard Branson but even I know this much.

    However, Yippee were not the only local wannabes who were stupid enough to simply copy someone else's business model without offering any "killer benefit" to users -- anyone remember Flying Pig? Haven't they gone awfully quiet recently?

    What About You?
    If you've got a commentary you'd like published in Aardvark, please contact me with an outline of the subject you'd like to write on and I'll get back to you.


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