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The first episode of ‘100 Innovations per Hour’ was all about emoji domains and I’m pleased to say that it prompted quite a bit of interest. People have been asking questions about how to register an emoji domain so I thought I would write a short guide.

If you haven’t listened to episode one yet, you can find it at Soundcloud…

First things first, you can only register emoji domains with a handful of TLDs of which the most common and supported are .ws, .fm and .to (so no .com /.org / etc).

Also, only some domain registrars will register them for you, these include GoDaddy and (the one I use)…

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I sign up to a lot of newsletters. Probably too many. Certainly too many to read every week. However, over time, you realise that when some of them arrive in your inbox you are excited and want to read it immediately. Here are ten that do that for me.

I read every issue of these.

Some of these have paid versions, I subscribe to the free version but would have no hesitation in recommending them if you wanted to become a paying subscriber.

Exponential View

Probably the most valuable newsletter for me. Azeem Azhar’s guide is full of interesting and useful content about the future of tech and the planet. …

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2021 is here. Whilst in the UK we are in the throes of another lockdown, there are plenty of reasons to look forward to the year ahead.

2020 was a year like no other and inevitably the trends for 2021 will include plenty that are a result of our need to adapt to our new reality.

I’m going to focus on the trends that will affect office life and business, although these are likely to also impact education and home life too.

Here are my eight tech trends for business in 2021.

1️⃣ Voice in B2B Systems

It seems like this has been coming for a while (like all good trends) but the rise of voice as an input method for B2B systems will be a big this year. …

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In November I presented at a BettaKultcha event organised by LeedsBID on trends that are starting to impact how we live. Specifically with reference to our city centres as that was relevant to the audience.

As it’s New Year’s Eve today, I thought I would post the talk as a blog post so here it is.

You can see a copy of the slides on SlideShare…

Whilst I’m naturally optimistic about the impact of technology on the lives that we lead. …

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This week I’m giving a talk at Local Government Procurement Expo on this very subject. I thought it would be interesting to write up my thoughts as a blog post (it’ll also help me get my thoughts straight in preparation for the presentation).

Blockchain can be a difficult subject to get your head around, at its heart it’s quite simple, a distributed ledger with trust built in but delve into the technology that underpins it and you can quickly get lost.

Here’s a short video that will get you started

However, we don’t need to know the technical workings of HTTP or be conversant with HTML to use the internet or build a business there. The same is true for Blockchain. Non-technical people can quite easily buy, store and spend Bitcoin on the Blockchain now and more applications will get easier and easier to use. …

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It seems that everywhere you look people are talking about chat as the next major user interface and artificial intelligence powered chatbots as a big productivity leap forward.

So big that some fear that chatbots will replace so many human jobs that unemployment will be a massive problem.

I’ve heard this before and whenever I hear a ‘technology will replace jobs’ story, I think it is far more likely that ‘technology will change jobs’.

I am pretty sure that chatbots will be arranging meetings, paying invoices, handling simple customer queries and processing expense claims in the very near future (in fact some do already) but it doesn’t mean that administration, accounting, customer service and HR departments will no longer be needed, it just means that their roles will change. …

This post was inspired by reading this blog post on culture from Seth the other day —

He’s right you do choose the culture of your organisation.

Let me tell you a story which I hope illustrates the point.

About 10 years ago we moved back to York, my three kids were all in primary school and we needed to choose their new school. The choice came down to two schools (let’s call them A and B), both in similar areas, both with very similar intakes, very similar premises and facilities and actually both with the same Ofsted scores.

We visited them one morning and, by lunchtime, the decision was clear. We were choosing school B, no question, no debate. …

The world’s most redundant question

I am on a mission.

And my mission is to stop people asking whether artworks qualify as ‘art’.

Even the most uninformed observer seems to have an opinion on whether something ‘is or is not art’. We all need to stop. That train has left.

Nobody stands in front of a painting and asks ‘yes, but is it a painting?’. No-one walks around a bookshop questioning whether books actually qualify as a book and therefore whether the bookshop is right in stocking them.

‘Art’ as a concept has now entered into the same realm as things such as paintings and books where we have to accept that they just exist. …

Why do Sales and Marketing talk about the Purchase Funnel or Sales Funnel but in Procurement we talk about process?

The Purchase Funnel is a pretty simple and intuitive model. In fact, it has been about for over 100 years. Here’s one example of a graphical representation taken from the Wikipedia article.

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Simple right? People need to go through each stage before they finally buy from you.

And there are far more potential customers at the top than actual customers at the bottom.

Despite consultants claiming that the purchase funnel is dead. I think the principles will always hold true.

So why don’t buyers talk about their purchase funnel? …


Paul Smith

I write about things that interest me including (but not limited to) corporate culture, procurement, AI, chatbots, art and coffee.

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