16 October 2010

Affordable Space Travel, Forbes, and Steve Jobs

First and foremost I had to comment on this article on CNN: http://edition.cnn.com/2010/TRAVEL/10/15/space.tourism/index.html. While I don't have the money to support it, I am a huge supporter of corporate owned, commercial space travel (partially from my belief that government screws it up pretty darn well). Flights for $200,000 are already on sale for a trip in Virgin Galactic's ship. Other commercial space flight companies are rigorously building their space ports across the US and taking reservations. In the article, the company Space Adventures will charge $102,000 per trip. As more money flows into commercial space travel and exploration, prices will drop (as with any technology or service), and technology will advance to do more lighter, and with less. I only wish there was a way to donate to such companies in order to help the cause (don't I sound all politicky and revolutionary).

Second on today's post is Forbes (http://www.forbes.com/). I thoroughly enjoy this site, and read it daily to see what new nuggets I can pull from it in the areas of investing, marketing, and starting a small business. I highly recommend everyone goes to the site and reads as much as they can. Just ingest the knowledge held there. When I get back from overseas, I'm going to subscribe to the magazine (or eMagazine, if it's available).
But two articles caught my attention this evening. The first is an article on how small businesses can defeat inaction (http://www.forbes.com/forbes/2010/1025/entrepreneurs-economy-planning-new-products-what-now.html?boxes=Homepagechannels), especially in the stressful economic environment we live and operate in today (no, sorry, the recession is not over for the majority of Americans still attempting to find jobs). This article spoke to me as I am slowly but surely planning to start my own small business.
More importantly, though, was the article on "How to Innovate Like Steve Jobs" (http://blogs.forbes.com/kymmcnicholas/2010/10/15/how-to-innovate-like-steve-jobs/?boxes=Homepagechannels). It's partially an article advertisement of the book by the same name - a book I plan to buy (eBook, here I come!). In the article, and the book, the author focuses on the principles that Steve Jobs follows in innovating in Apple. One of the major points was "sell dreams, not products". Your business should be about helping people and advancing their lives, not about you or your business. Jobs focuses on creating products that meet consumer wants and needs and the best way to build them to meet those needs. Another principle Jobs follows is "association"; looking outside your industry for ideas. Instead of just going through the computer aisle at a store, Jobs strolled through a home appliances aisle to get ideas. Also, Apple Stores don't have dedicated cashiers. Instead they have concierges, an idea he got from hotels. The role of the concierge is not to make a sale, but to help people better themselves.

A lot of interesting ideas for anyone going into any business - even publishing.

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