Tag Archives: Sandhausen


Effective immediately (6/8/11), the subject blog has moved to its new site: http://www.ViewsfromSandhausen.com/ The blog will be but one element in a larger site that I  self-host, and that will give you a significantly richer experience. Items of significance for you … Continue reading

Proof: The iPad Is Affecting Consumer PC Sales

In my recent post, The iPad is becoming The Only ‘PC’ That Matters, I postulated that the computers that we have used since 1978 are becoming less and less relevant, due to the introduction of smaller form-factor computers that we have today.  These new devices, Smartphone’s, tablets and the like, are really cutting into traditional computer sales and use.

In a recent article in Business Insider, Proof The iPad Is Affecting Consumer PC Sales , my prediction appears to be validated.

Please take a look to follow the conversation!

When will you add a tablet to your digital inventory?  I know that I can effectively write stories and chapters on my iPhone 3GS.  I have read entire books on my phone.  They are viable and a starting to become pervasive.

Yes, I still own a laptop and a home PC.   They still have their place but they don’t integrate well into my current lifestyle.  ‘Choices’ aren’t they wonderful!

The iPad Tsunami: Does it Matter? and how is it Used?

Behold the iPad in All Its Glory.

Image via Wikipedia

The iPad is becoming The Only “PC” That Matters

As I have stated on this blog and to my friends, Business Insider has become one of my favorite resources.  I am a struggling author who needs to spend my money very carefully.  To do so I lean on technology and business authorities such as CNET, BI, Consumer Reports, and sources of their ilk.

As a writer, I am dearly in love with tablet computers.  I bought my iPhone 3GS on sale when the iPhone 4 was introduces.  As a ‘tool’ it is probably the most important device that I use for all manner of things useful.  Using its 287 Apps, I have been exceptionally empowered – and I LOVE it!  So, (I) imagine how much better I could operate with an iPad.  How significant is the iPad and how are people using them?  Inquiring minds want to know!

Recently Business Insider published two very interesting charts, which I am referring to today.  The first that I’ll talk about is “The iPad Is Becoming The Only “PC” That Matters”.  I refer to the links provided for the discussion content and background of these charts.

The first element that I notice in this chart spanning the time from November, 2010 and May, 2011, is that the iPad is used a higher percentage of the time than all the other devices.  We can conclude that it is the device of choice, and is only NOT used because of a lack of functionality that the other devices additionally provide, e.g. phone calls, printer services and enhanced computing with applications.

From my personal experience, I have written chapters of my books on my iPhone.  It was not easy given the ration of my finger size to the keyboard, but it was certainly more convenient as I could work when I felt like, regardless of my surroundings.

Further, not being content to jot down a few keywords of an idea, that occurs sporadically, with the iPhone I can jot down a quick paragraph that ensures that I don’t lose elements of content that I might with ‘keywords only’.

OK, we have learned that the iPad is increasing its lead over the other devices, particularly laptops, and is the most popular platform.  How do people actually use the iPad today?

 How People Actually Use iPads

What can we learn from this chart?  First and foremost, we seen that the iPad is primarily a consumer of information, with over 59% of its ‘time’ used for Web Browsing and watching videos, plus game playing.  This is contrasted by the uses of Email and Other Applications (40.7%) – creators of information.  It is the former, consuming information, which clearly drives its use because it is so much more convenient, given its form-factor.

So, since November, 2010 when the iPad was introduced, it has become the dominant and preferred form factor, and I can now certainly understand my growing longing.  The iPhone 3GS became affordable because I bought it when the iPhone 4 came out.  Unfortunately, there was no large price decline when the iPad 2 was introduced. 

Until a miracle happens, I’ll just have to continue to save my pennies.  I also urge you to purchase my second book, Views from Sandhausen: Experiences from a Foreign Service Assignment, available from the following points of purchase:

It is a fun, informative, engaging, interesting and useful view of what lies on the other side of ‘The Pond’.

Love each other!


 Author: Jay Yarow:  http://www.businessinsider.com/author/jay-yarow

Use iPads:  http://tiny.cc/nykcw

Only PC:  http://tiny.cc/ts6jq

What Makes This Man So Smart?

Final http://www.ViewsfromSandhausen.com Design

Before I launch into today’s post, I’ve put up a stand-alone server for “Views from Sandhausen” on GoDaddy.com.  The work on Smart Author Sites is nearly complete, with only several hours of consulting assistance pending.  I have received our webpage design (shown here) and it is only a matter of my time to get it assembled and turned on.  The most precious thing that I currently have is time! 

By the way, please send me comments on our informal expose called “My Name is Helina; Can I be your Girlfriend?.  Three posts are up on my blog FlaAuthor.wordpress.com (soon to be moved to the VFS main site), and I have written two more. Isn’t life fun?

I’ve just completed a course of training that is the foundation for a new part-time job that I recently landed.  This will cut back on my free time, and as a result, I will be issuing more guest posts, such as todays.  The post comes from my good friend, John Alanis ~ Thanks John!

“I know a guy who has a reputation for being very, very good at putting together infomercials.  He’s had some big hits, but he’s had way more failures.

In fact, 7 out of 8 are real flops, dead on arrival.

The answer is simple:  the industry average for a hit is 1 in 16.

When you look at it in that light, he’s pretty darn smart.

What, then, makes this man so smart?

People who aren’t that smart think that being smart is getting everything right all the time.  That, however, is not reality.  While you should certainly strive to do so, you have to measure it up against the real world.

The most successful people “fail,” in an absolute sense, way more often than those who do not succeed.  But in a relative sense, their success to failure ratio is much higher.

The reason they have so many more failures is because they do so much more, undaunted when something they do doesn’t work.

Really smart people, Like Thomas Edison and Albert Einstein, understand that most things you do don’t work, and that the real key to success is to do a lot of things, killing the ones that don’t work as soon as it becomes obvious.

Then, when they hit upon something that does work, they focus on it completely until it’s time to move onto the next thing.

So, if you want to be smart, do what the truly smart do, not what the guys who pretend to be smart do.  For instance, if you want to be smart with women, meet a lot of different women and try a lot of different things.  Most won’t work out, but the ones that do will be well worth it.

Then people will remark upon how smart you are with women… while you secretly think how dumb they really are.

Just don’t tell them they’re dumb…that’s not very smart.

On with the fun…”

~ John Alanis

To Blog Today or Not to Blog

I’ve taken a few days off this week on the blogging front.  Real life intruded on my idyllic cocoon of my computer, my view of the golfers putting on the first green of the Sugarmill Woods Southern Woods golf course, and the drone of CNN in the background.  The news has been particularly unfortunate this week but it allows me to focus on how blessed I am.  Not blessed in my social life, but blessed in the small measure that I am taking to crawl out from under this cloud.

Do you follow Twitter?  I have a rather eclectic group of 1,100 followers that follow @CliffordF2.  My primary sphere of interests include: Writing and Authors, Publishing, Science, Technology, and all things contemporary.  It also includes a world of mindless fanatics, including those ‘space pilots’ who follow Justin Bieber and Britany Spears.  If I get one more ‘GET MORE FOLLOWERS MY BEST FRIENDS I WILL FOLLOW YOU BACK IF YOU FOLLOW ME.  These are the bloody terrorists of the Twitter world! An example of one of these characters name is BoyBelieberGaGa.  Believe it or not, it is NOT a girl; it is a 17-year-old guy from the UK.  I don’t know how many times that I have told them that my immediate reaction to this kind of tweet is to immediately unfollow them.  Is this a problem for you Twitters out there?  Please leave a comment.

The genesis of this terrorism seems to be an outfit called FollowBack.info.  They promise you 3,000 new followers in 30 days, for $65.  Right! If it were not against my principles, not to mention illegal, a hack of that site would now be in progress.  Terrorists!!

Last Friday Mike from Smart Author Sites completed the Views from Sandhausen sites ‘look and feel’.  I need only one small tweak to make it perfect.  Where Lynn and my picture is, there will be a scrolling marquee that cycles through (118) significant photographs of our lives there, including photos of some of you, our dear friends.  I’ll be doing a grand announcement when all the pieces are in place.  In the meantime, please leave a comment and tell me what you think of the site’s appearance.  I really need your opinion to confirm my opinions! 🙂

That’s about it for today all.  Have a Wonderful weekend and I’ll be back next week.  Live long and Prosper!


I’ve started a New Book

Blogging, Current State

Most of you know that at the beginning of the year I entered a contest (I’ve forgotten what the prizes are) called PostAWeek2011.  The more ambitious of my peers committed to PostADay2011.  This is really old news; the primary benefit is that it drives you to post, even when you don’t feel like it.  If you are any good, everyone benefits.

There have been days that I really didn’t feel like posting.  It is essentially a creative exercise and creativity cannot be turned on with a switch; hence, my declining the daily post challenge.  Having said that, I’ve posted 32 times so far this year (this is week 10) which I think is rather good.  It’s difficult to know how I am being received as I receive fewer comments from you my readers, than I’d like to see.  A little help here?

Lots of things going on; yesterday I returned Draft #2 of the Views from Sandhausen website design.  It wasn’t all that I had hoped. This was certainly not the fault of their team; it was my failure to more completely lay out my artistic desires, as I did with my technical requirements.  I mocked up my ideas with PowerPoint and sent them off to Mike at Smart Author Sites and expect feedback soon.  Something that hampered our progress was that, inexplicably, the eMails that they were sending to me weren’t arriving. Finally I sent them a note, and Kristin called back.  Now, I have probably seven eMail addresses.  Between them we’ve corrected the issue and are back on track.

I made progress with Lightning Source on a price reduction to the two print books.  On balance, their final size was a bit smaller that I had anticipated.  I made a commensurate price reduction. 

I’m shooting for a first week of April launch and you will hear more about this as time goes on.

Lastly, I’ve started a new short book on the general subject of blogging.  Ideas are still forming, I’ve built a structure, and the possibilities are endless as the subject is so open and increasingly popular.  Blogging is good for business. From that link, “A study of 2,300 HubSpot customers revealed that businesses that blog witness their monthly leads rise by 126% more than those who don’t.”  I urge you to read more of that post.  Ars Technica also discussed the growth in blogging, although the article’s title is somewhat misleading.  From seoSemantics we learn that “Blog is a platform managed by individuals for personal or official interests. The word ‘blog’ has been extracted from WEBLOG meaning website-blog. Blogs have revolutionized the information available on the internet.” I’m all about ‘bringing home the bacon’! Read the full article.

So, the time is right, the subject is new to 90% of the population, blogging is fundamental to a promising author, and I’ve learned many lessons along the way.  Currently, I’m planning to give it away free, to encourage my small ‘tribe’ to grow, subscribe to my blog, and buy the book.  Heady aspirations indeed!

Have a great day!


Photo Credit: http://tiny.cc/1p4yi

Spring Cleaning and the Tablet Explosion

Explosion in ‘Gadget’ Growth – 5 Years

I’m sorry that I’ve been missing in action the last two days; I’m in the throes of that dreaded annual event, Spring Cleaning.  I’ve been power washing the Lanai deck and pool area.  As we are in the middle of pollen season, the green goop is everywhere!  By the time I wheeled away my 2,000 PSI power washer, the only survivors were a silk palm tree, the stainless steel grill, the cat and assorted reconstituted earthworms…  The carnage was very satisfying.

OK, back to the real world.  The proof copy of the hardcover Views from Sandhausen has arrived, as well as the company seal.  Now that I have my TB test behind me, the only mission is to get the two print books proofread and accepted on the Lightening Source site.  They should be available by this weekend.

The physical books are a little smaller in size that I wanted.  As a result, I’m lowering the price on all formats.  I had in mind a Nelson DeMille-sized book.  The final versions of “Views’ are slightly smaller.

The eBooks are available here: Kindle and Nook

On this “Announcement Tuesday” (iPad2) I thought that I’d take a look at the portable devices landscape.  While you and I think about Kindles, and Nooks, and iPads and Xoom’s, businesses are seeking competitive advantage without compromising security.  This corporate move onto these devices is both inevitable and HUGE, in terms of numbers of devices purchased and deployed.

Morgan Stanley released a major report on the tablet market earlier this week. Its essential message — the tablet market is going to be a lot bigger than anyone thinks.  There are a series of charts that graphically demonstrate my assertion, one of which is today/s graphic.

In an optimistic case, Morgan Stanley thinks hardware makers will ship 100 million tablets in 2012, up from 16 million in 2010. Considering Apple has a lock on touch screen displays this is pretty good news for the Apple bulls.” If you take a look at the “Being Adopted in Companies” chart you begin to get a feel for how really big tablet devices are!  In any measure, table devices will be a Huge part of the 2011-2013 IT spend, along with support staff and application development to ‘incorporate’ these devices into the corporation.

Adoption by 2/3 of Large Firms in 2011

We will incorporate tablets into our lives, just as we did cell phones, and then smart phones.  Just as the smart phone is replacing land-line phones in our homes, tablets will replace notebooks (for light use) and net books.  Whether we like it or not, and many don’t, just as the river pushes the rafter, this technological trend will push this migration.  Today, as 32MB Wi-Fi & 3G iPad is $729 at my local Walmart.  This is too rich for my blood but I’m looking forward to today’s Apple announcement, and the subsequent price drop of that tablet!

What does this mean for you and I?  As authors and publishers, the impact will be an epiphany to the paradigm that Books = Paper.  As stated in a previous post, physical books will endure.  We like the portability, the heft, and the smells of paper and glue.  We will always value a (physical) book as an object; it just won’t be the media of choice, as tablets and like devices become ubiquitous.  Do you agree with me?  Post a comment and let’s get a conversation going…

Read more: http://tiny.cc/ugg3e

Photo Credits: http://tiny.cc/iy949 http://tiny.cc/i9ydx


Information Delivery: Times Marches On

There has been a lot of discussion about the future of books. 

Views from Sandhausen Website - First Draft

As we look back at the Record, Movie, and Entertainment systems evolution, we see a shift of media; content reigns and delivery system evolves.  Since the same things are happening to all of these information delivery systems, it tells us that it is not about these ‘Information Niches’; it is more about how we are evolving as a species.

As an abject Lover of books, it has been of concern to me personally. As I strive to move forward in my writing and publishing efforts, I feel like I felt in my 30’s when White Water Rafting meant so much to me.  The analogy is not only solid, it is absolutely fundamental to what we are experiencing.  We avoid the rocks (new ideas), are sucked into whirlpools (when we bet on an innovation that proves to be a dry well), and are relentlessly pushed by the overpowering force that we feel (Time) to our greater glory – or total destruction.

As said by Julius Wiedemann in his recent (excellent analysis) post The Book Is Dead. Long Live The Publishing Industry! , “We are moving toward an ever-growing differentiation between the book as object versus content delivery system. As this occurs, we cannot ignore the fact that our lives are shifting dramatically toward a digitalized experience. This shift is happening not just for the sake of technology; it is happening because we–as in, society–are changing, as is our behavior.”

My lifelong desire was to write and publish a book.  I love to write so it was just a matter of time.   I published Lynn’s Story in a hardback version only.  It went to close family and friends who intimately loved and shared joys with Lynn and me.  I am publishing Views from Sandhausen in all formats less audio.


The paperback proof copy of Views from Sandhausen was just delivered!  It is Brilliant!!!  I may sleep with it tonight.  WOW!!!

 As pointed out in Mr. Wiedmann’s post, I expect that people will still buy a physical copy of the book, if they liked the eBook that they have read.  If this comes to pass, it is VITAL that eBooks have the same pagination as does the hard or soft cover edition.  The current practice of paginating eBook’s as ‘screens’ will make it slightly more difficult to read the eBook on your commute, the PC version in the office (whoops, did I say that?), and the hard/soft cover version whilst trying to fall asleep.  Not impossible mind you, just more difficult.

I intend to leverage that trend by offering book bundles Hard + eBook, or Soft + eBook, on my personal sell site, ViewsfromSandhausen.com.  OF course, pricing breaks will be offered.

Other happenings: (things are moving very fast) over the last two days, include my sending the first round of comments back to Smart Author Sites on the look and feel of the site that they are currently designing. Today’s photo will give you a quick look at the first draft of the site Home Page.  Please feel free to comment on what you see!  (You always are welcome to leave me comments: it makes both you and I better!)

The Twitter following continues to grow; I am weeding out the ‘chaff’ and adding people who are ‘movers and shakers’ in this business.  If I’ve learned something from you (and I know that you don’t care) – I’m following You!  Lastly, I’m continuing to work with PhotoFunia and their very clever software that produces images like this:

What a great tool for subtle advertising!!

Views from Sandhausen Advertising

Now take a further few moments and read Julius Wiedmann’s insightful post The Book Is Dead. Long Live The Publishing Industry!

What Really Happened at Borders?

Borders - Signs off the Building

I LOVE bookstores as much as I love to read.  There is nothing like browsing through sections that held my interest, seeing what these talented authors had crafted out of a little ink, a few thoughts, and a stack of paper.  We bought a lot of books, almost exclusively from Borders, and their poorer cousin, Walden Books.  Walden’s tended to be located in lower-traffic areas while Border’s was found in the ‘The Big City’.  We lived in the sticks…

And then the Internet emerged, and web browsers were offered, and Google tied it all together.  Suddenly, we did not have to pile in the car to find a book.  Have a credit card?  You could have your book on your doorstep in 36 hours.  What could be better than that?  NO more searching the ‘stacks’, no more waiting for Borders to order the same book that YOU could order.  To be sure, I still counted myself as a browser, when Lynn and I went shopping.  Something like icing on the cake, you met some really wonderful people, doing the same as you.  To sit in the coffee bar, thumbing through a recent best-seller, while you drank rich, Colombian, coffee – nirvana!!  My default process had become, “find an interesting book, write down the details, and order it from Amazon”.  Not good for bricks and mortar!  The last time that I was in Borders was six months ago, while I was researching the cover and interior design for Views from Sandhausen. (How are we writers going to perform that particular type of design research in the future)?

We all saw it coming, modeling on my personal general shift away from ‘big box’ bookstores.  Additionally, we saw that:

  • No bookstore moved fast enough in the eBook Space
  • No bookstore could survive the huge investment in the music business – and the subsequent tanking of that business
  • No bookstore could have a supply chain that was measured in weeks, once you order a book through them, before you get your book
  • No bookstore could survive the economy tanking (Borders should have quickly divested itself of all Walden stores in the 2007 timeframe)
  • No bookstore could survive the deep discounting that has been growing in the retail book market
  • And many other reasons that were not as obvious

I have been holding off on writing this post because I wanted to write it once, to include the real reasons why Borders collapsed, unlike Barnes & Noble, and Books a Million (although I wouldn’t rank either as ‘investment grade’ properties) survive.  Well, I think I have finally unearthed the ‘real believable’ story.

I constantly strive to expand my social presence and I was looking at a site called Quora.  I’m still learning about it, but as fate would have it, I Immediately ran across an article on the subject, written by the former Borders Merchandising Strategy & Analytics Director, Mark Evans.  If there is anyone that should know, it is he.  Here is what Mark said in his piece, “Why is Barnes & Noble performing well as a business while Borders is near (or has even reached) bankruptcy?

Photo Credit: NewsFlux

Catching up on Past Subjects, and Other Topics

The Lights are Back On in Cairo

The news from Egypt continues to be troubling, and at the same time, encouraging.  We are truly watching history unfold; people yearning to be free and willing to put everything on the line to achieve that desired state.  This morning, there is news that Egypt is once again, on the global web. (http://tiny.cc/vea5y).  That is wonderful news (being back on the web)!  A side benefit from that is that like-minded peoples’ in Tunisia, Jordan, and other middle-east countries yearning for the same, are using the Egypt ‘model’ to guide them in their own quest for peace.  I am convinced that, just as nature will ALWAYS win out over our puny attempts at taming her, Peace will always win out over oppression.  The life’s blood is, of course, communications.

On the home front, I’m so busy that I rarely take time out for food.  Our Twitter following continues to grow, but at a drastically reduced rate.  It seems that the techniques that I am using are “frowned upon by the good folks in that establishment” (don’t you love those commercials?).  That’s all right; my followers get at least five (quality) tweets a day, and our number of “Sell the Book” tweets are down.

Don’t you like a great transition?  Views from Sandhausen is now on sale at Amazon.co.uk.  Here is the link.  http://tiny.cc/y5p3x . I would really prefer that you buy it from Amazon.com http://tiny.cc/c64zt as my margin is twice what it is in UK,  I did it to make the shipping of the paper books more affordable for our European friends.  Since the eBook has no shipping, buy in the USA please.

I’m currently struggling with a new printer that won’t print, keeping up on all of the new material on writing and publishing, making sure the house is decent for Erik to return, if he ever gets out of Chicago (can you say 20”),

That’s it for now; Time to eat dinner.