Business, Startup

New Group :)

2015-05-28 at 12-05-32 - 9831

After a good long break in the United States meeting people, cycling and enjoying San Francisco, Michigan, Ottawa & New York, I’m embarking on a new journey to apply what I’ve learnt over the last 15 years in technology, user experience design and product management towards mentoring individuals and coaching teams / companies.

I’m currently in the process of setting up a highly flexible team to take on the challenge of providing on-demand skills to startups.

Find out more about The Collab Folks


How I choose to Work

I’ve worked with customers who cover different fields of industry, and range in size from one-person operations to listed companies since 1999. For customers large or small, I offer the same customer orientated approach.

Most people choose to work for a company.

I choose to work with a customer and walk away when the time is right or it’s no longer the right environment.

I’m not getting paid a salary, I’m getting paid for the service (hopefully good in their eyes) of improving processes and solving their problems.

This is why OT & Appraisals are a foreign concept to me since I don’t generally care about them. I also find the concept of “my boss” strange which might make it odd to work with me for some people. Technically you are my customer whom I don’t always think is right 😉

This approach has a great positive benefit of finding better customers to work with over the past 14 years.

The downside? Some customers are better than others and it can get hard to walk away when you make new friends and get into new areas of responsibility. My current customer is a 2.5 year long project that I originally thought would be 4-5 years long so it’s definitely tough to leave.

For those asking me when is my last day at iProperty, it happened already for me on 1st May but I just so happen to have a 3 months notice period. I guess you’ll know when the day is when I stop posting stuff on Yammer.

It’s kinda nice to have only ONE project to focus on now. The odd thing is I find myself holding back on comments on most things now coz “stepping on people’s toes” isn’t so nice when you are leaving and can’t repair the damage if the person is actually ok out of work context.

My next customer is going to be in an industry which is foreign to me (for now) but the concepts are not. E-commerce, Logistics, Analytics & Subscription Service, it’s going to be a great place to practice what I believe in and teach me the important parts about running such a business.

I’m also finally starting up company #4 at the same time (4th time the charm?).
3 companies and many _what not to do_ lessons should (I hope) make this an interesting challenge at the same time.

My goal at 25 year mark (just 10+ years to go) is to create a few more companies, meet new friends, find a few more great customers and hopefully teach some folks along the way some of the stuff I’ve learnt.

Development, Hardware, Musings

Always good to learn new things (even with PHP)

2012-09-12 Singapore PHP User Group Meetup


Hardware hacking (RaspberryPi) with PHP
GPIO Libraries

Restler for PHP Restful api
Behat (BDD for php)

Facebook groups



Apple, Musings

thank you Steve Jobs for Apple 

Recollecting my thoughts over the past few days since the news.

Steve Jobs (1955 – 2011)

On Oct 5th, I remember waiting up (as I’ve done for a few years now) for Apple’s “Let’s talk iPhone” event. There had been rumours that Steve Jobs might be there and I hoped to “catch” it on the live blogging. After about an hour and a half, I learnt about the new iPhone 4 S and went to sleep. In the morning on the way to work, I was still undecided about getting the phone and after watching the video of the new phone on the iPad, I had pretty much made up my mind. Oct 28th for Singapore!

The day went by pretty uneventfully. There was meetings and even chatted a bit about the new phone with a few colleagues, there’s considerably fewer Apple fans in my current workplace compared to previous but it’s still fun to talk about something new from Apple with people who care.

On Oct 6th, it was another typical day, reading news on the iPad on the cab to work. Opened up Tweetdeck and a feeling of dread came over me as I learnt the news about an hour after it had broke on the net. I headed straight up to the office, checked Apple’s website to be sure and there was the man himself and a tribute to his work. We had truly lost a visionary and creative genius.

Remembering Steve Jobs

I’m not a Apple user from Day 1. As a kid, I’ve seen the Mac in use and never really got into it. MS-Dos, Windows were the windows into the PC world. I got into programming on DOS /Windows,Unix (HP-UX) and discovered Linux soon after. Apple didn’t really enter my life till quite late when I got my first iPod Nano. It changed my life from then on with a simple concept of being a work of art serving music.

When the iPhone got released, most people were still using candy bar phones from Ericsson or Nokia. It was not until the iPhone 3GS that I experienced queuing up for the first time for an Apple device. Unboxing it was a change that now has seen me not purchase any Microsoft product since 2009. When I look back at how Microsoft squandered their lead especially in Smartphones, it’s amazing how Steve Jobs created a new product category that has dominated smartphone usage.

For the past year or so, I’ve been toggling between Windows 7 and Mac OS X. Even as a long time computer user, I definitely have come to see how his vision has changed how computing should be and how product development should be done. I am truly saddened by the loss of a visionary and someone who has innovated and touched everyone with his dedication.

From his Stanford commencement speech in 2005:

Remembering that I’ll be dead soon is the most important tool I’ve ever encountered to help me make the big choices in life. Because almost everything — all external expectations, all pride, all fear of embarrassment or failure – these things just fall away in the face of death, leaving only what is truly important. Remembering that you are going to die is the best way I know to avoid the trap of thinking you have something to lose. You are already naked. There is no reason not to follow your heart.

Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t be trapped by dogma — which is living with the results of other people’s thinking. Don’t let the noise of others’ opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary.




links for 2011-09-22