Why we did not win the iPod Shuffle

Yesterday, my colleague and I participated in an interesting event where several presenters were given 15 minutes each to show off their rich Internet application. Each presenter was promised a prize, and the first prize was the iPod Shuffle. We did not win the iPod even though our RIA application was way more advanced than any other presented that evening.

In the first five minutes we ran through a short slides presentation, during the next five minutes we “ve created from scratch a CRUD Flex-Java-DBMS application in front of the amazed audience. Our code generator did it for us, it also deployed the Java part of the application under Tomcat, the front end was done in Adobe Flex and MySql with the data about employees was our DBMS. During the final 5 minutes we “ve shown a report writer that allowed either developers or end users create, customize and deploy fancy reports online.

At the end of the event the audience was asked to vote for the best presentation, and the iPod went to hellip;.the guy who showed his application that allowed to display and manipulate photos of female models. The users could select photos, put them side by side for comparison, zoom and rate the images. The most thing I enjoyed in this presentation were several pretty models in nice underwear. Every month, someone in the blogosphere publishes yet another photo-album-type application. This guy won the iPod, and I open heartedly congratulate him for this.

But what “s the lesson learned?

We did not win because men like images, videos and women. BTW, there were about 40 men in the audience and one woman. Even though our applications were a lot more advanced from the coding perspective, you can ‘t beat a program that put images of the models on the screen and allows you to play with them (I mean images).

Do we even have a chance to win? Of course we do, but there are two types of markets: tools for enterprise and for consumers. The enterprise market is ours even though one should never forget that enterprise managers are human too, and they also like sexy looking applications. Recently I “ve written an article called SOA, RIA and the Human Factor , which deliver the same message ndash; never underestimate the look and feel of the enterprise systems.

As to our future presentations, I “ll consider replacing our sample boring database with employees with the one with porno stars. We already know how to apply formulas, grouping, styling and do export to Excel, we just need to add a link to each row of the report, which would open a corresponding image of a female porn star. Ability to filter the report by boob “s size will be a killer for any audience. Adobe Flex allows to easily zoom into any particular part of the body pretty easily. We can also add an ability to filter report by gender, but this won “t be too useful for the presentations, because a typical audience in the software conferences, seminars and workshops consists of 90% of straight males.

So let “s roll up the sleeves and get to work. Can anyone recommend an inexpensive relational database populated with quality images of porn stars? Can I find it for a reasonable price in the USA or I ‘d rather look offshore?

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