January 11, 2011 - 0 Comments

It’s hard to believe that a dusty prairie dog like myself worked in aerospace. How that led to my career in wireless is a story for another time. Did a bunch of stuff on weapons platforms like the B1, ICBM’s for submarines, other interesting things, and then astrophysics platforms for NASA. Huge fun, amazing people, and in general a marvelous experience.

Speed is a critical element in those fields of endeavor. On military platforms it’s often about vmax or maximum velocity; in astrophysics it’s much more about optimal velocity. Too many stories to tell but one of my favorite is when an astrophysicist and myself once stood on the ladder of an F-16 chatting with the pilot who was still in the cockpit. I mentioned that I heard his aircraft could achieve a certain speed. He looked at me, grinned and said, “While I can’t tell you how fast it’ll go, it’s pretty dang quick.” He then put his finger on on the air speed indicator. The number he showed me was much faster than what you read in various publications. It was at that point I realized getting somewhere more quickly than the enemy believes enables you to surprise them.

Speed in business is just as vital. Wireless enables huge increases in business velocity. When information comes to you versus you going to where it is, you save enormous amounts of time. Saving time is the same as increasing speed. Shorten the distance or increase the speed; it’s about the same thing. Remove distance from the equation, and you have something very special in terms of velocity. I enjoyed an example of that last week.

I needed to connect two people sooner than later because an opportunity was afoot. While in discussion with one person on my iPhone, I texted the other and asked him to call as soon as possible. In less than a minute, my phone rang- it was the person I texted. I then conferenced him in with the person I wanted him to meet. Effectively it was a real time event though all three parties were hundreds of miles apart.

Something quite good may come of that introduction and it’ll be interesting to monitor.  If all works to potential, millions of dollars will change hands. Speed allowed these people to meet before someone else could get there. This will provide a disappointing surprise for the competitors.

Wireless makes distance irrelevant. Like the pilot who pointed to the air speed indicator some years ago; the true speed of business will surprise some.

What do you think?

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