k n i g h t o f c o m p u t i n g f a s h i o n
In every situation of adversity, there are opportunities
The current global economic situation has hit tech especially hard, and thesedays it’s almost impossible to find anyone in the industry who isn’t affected inone way or another.Businesses are cutting costs, startups are finding it tough tostay afloat, PR budgets are heavily downsized, freebies and junkets have all butceased to exist, and offices are circulating memos warning employees to cut downon travel expenses and stationary usage. In a climate where jobs are being cutand increments abolished, one can hardly expect any organization to spend mon-ey on indulgences such as non-essential hardware and software upgrades. Theeffects of such belt-tightening measures cascade through the industry, affectingmanufacturers, distributors, contractors, transporters and plenty of other busi-nesses that might not seem related at all. But all is not doom and gloom. In everysituation of adversity, there are opportunities for individuals and groups to stayafloat by being unique or valuable enough to convince others to invest in them,monetarily or otherwise.An IDC report published late last year predicted that hardware would be hardesthit by budget reductions, except for storage devices.The reason is simply that noone is going to generate any less data or store any less digital content. This il-lustrates the fact that no matter what the economic situation is, there will alwaysbe products and services that are simply too important to not have money spenton them. Apart from storage, it would be highly unwise for anyone, whether anindividual or a corporation, to spend any less on data security and malware pro-tection. The good news is there are plenty of enterprising individuals and com-panies who are doing quite well for themselves in this day and age. Anecdotalevidence suggests that since international travel is pretty much taboo, companiesare spending more money on VoIP, videoconferencing and telepresence solutions.In another example, budget cuts are making laptops lose favor to netbooks andas pretty much the only category of PC hardware that will register decent salesgrowth figures this year, its no wonder that every manufacturer suddenly has adozen or so models on offer. Finally, in a time when VC funding is drying up andstartups are dying or being bought out, people are still willing to pay attention toany Web 2.0 service that promises to help people do more work, save more time,or spend less money. Anyone who has something worthwhile to offer should beable to scrape through this slowdown, and maybe even thrive. That’s also a goodreason for everyone to introspect a bit and see how they can upgrade their skills,tweak and repackage their offerings, present themselves as indispensable, andconvince others that they’re worthy enough to be kept alive.