Memories and promises

For the animal to be happy it is enough that this moment be enjoyable. But man is hardly satisfied with this at all. He is much more concerned to have enjoyable memories and expectations especially the latter. With these assured, he can put up with an extremely miserable present. Without this assurance, he can be extremely miserable in the midst of immediate physical pleasure.

The Wisdom of Insecurity

CMDB use from 451

The use of CMDBs has steadily risen, from 50% at interviewed enterprises in 2009, to 59% in use today. Homegrown methods of maintaining a CMDB are still prevalent, showing up at 7% of enterprises, while BMC, HP, SolarWinds and ServiceNow all show projected growth for new installations moving into 2015. Of those enterprises with a CMDB in place, 18% plan to increase spending on their solution in 2015.

025: Burn the boats because we’re inventing self-driving cars


We discuss the 100,000 node OpenStack cluster at Wal-mart, the new new Microsoft, the rumored Apple Car, and the industry analyst market being disrupted. It’s not too shabby this week.

Full show-notes can be found at

With Brandon Whichard, Matt Ray, and Coté.


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Show notes


Moved to Squarespace

I’ve moved my main sites to Squarespace recently. In the process, I’m sure lots of URLs are all screwed up. Try the search if you’re lost. Fun!

If you find something wrong, please feel free to email or Tweet me.

In the process, I switched over to from You know, shorter, and cooler.

So, sorry for all the mess. I’m sure after a few weeks it’ll sort itself out.

My old tumblr site will keep it’s old content (but the URLs will be from, not and have cross-posted links from here.

After I use it awhile, I’ll write-up or talk about the experience, I’m sure.

Coté Memo #065: Back home, finally

After two weeks away from home, I’m finally back.


  • This Memo is sponsored by The Craftsman PM – Amp up your skills and get to the top at this Whole Product Workshop Feb 21-22 in Austin and Mar 7-8 NYC. Grab a spot at 10% off for just Cote Memo readers (use code: cotememo62) before it’s all gone:

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Some reader follow-up on the Mexican matches from @MordodeMaru:

That match-box sure is another mindfuck. I think the key is the de lujo rather than the Clásicos. De lujo means high-class, luxurious and those objects (except for the Parthenon temple) are considered high society objects. It’s a very typical Spanish expression to say something is de lujo to mean cool, and this is something publicity picks up very frequently.

Tech & Work World

The industry analyst business – meta-level

I finally wrapped a long post on the tech industry analyst market. As I talked about in a recording for analyst podcast, I originally wrote the first draft back in April of last year when Ben Thompson first launched In a more recent episode, he went over how his business has been going (very well!) which reminded me that I should finish up the post.

In the proceding time there was new data out there which allowed me to rate his success by revenue, broadly. And, since I’d left the analyst world, I felt a little more free in analyizing that world.

Anyhow, it’s been nice to hear the reception from other analyst types. In talking through the piece with Alex Williams today, I think the part that I found lacking (as I disclaimed in an aisde at the top of the post) was an explanation of how this new crop of analysts could better attract buy-side customers.

What the new analysts do is mostly “vendor sports” which is appealing to the investment community (who wants to know how to allocate their money), vendors (who want ideas and competative intel), and the smaller “general audience” that just wants tech news. Buyers want advice about what IT to buy and how to use it. Alex and others are exploring ways of doing that…but there could be a lot more done there to marry-up the kind of work Ben Thompson, Horace Dediu, and even RedMonk does with Wirecutter style reviews (credit to SDT co-host Brandon Whichard for the Wirecutting framing which I think is spot on).

The issue, as I do cover in the post, is that doing these kinds of reviews and advice for enterprise technology is really expensive. Imagine what it would take to build out labs and tests to evaluate all the OpenStack distros, running in various modes…and then compare them to VMware and Microsoft virtualization. Or to evaluate all the ERP software out there.

I think it’s technically possible and would even be interesting. The problem is the opportnity cost for people involved: if you had the analytical and technical acumen to do that kind of testing, you can probably make more money working for an actual enterprise or vendor.

The problem always comes down to what people want to pay for, and it doesn’t seem easy to make money off the hard work in IT analyst land. That’s part of why Gartner has such a strong position, and, as I advise in the piece, an area they could defence against well.

As a side-note, I left out something I’d noticed about Forrester while putting together charts for the piece: they seem to be loosing profits, I’m not sure why, could be for growth or something bad.

Quick Hits

Fun & IRL

It looks like you’re supposed to drink 3-5 cups of coffee a day now. That and two glasses of wine a day, and we’ll finally be livin’ the life!

Honestly, I can’t keep up with all this stuff. Is there some source for nutritional advice that can be trusted more than 24 months?


Forrester Loses $90m from market cap

Forrester’s readership is changing, however. Kea Company’s 2014 Analyst Value Survey showed that Forrester’s hold on its potential audience is shrinking, especially in the freemium readership that is transforming the analyst industry. In 2014, Forrester was used by 65% of survey participants whose companies subscribed to analyst firms. That’s an impressively large number, despite being down on the 2013 percentage. Importantly, just 41% of those without corporate subscriptions use Forrester. Forrester’s audience is (like many of the top ten analyst houses) too small in the freemium segment, which is now the majority of the audience for analyst research. Of course, 41% isn’t a terrible percentage: Forrester’s the second largest analyst house, and it has a significant audience. That said, any analyst firm should look at the ratio between its freemium audience and the premium (subscription-paying) clientele. Some firms can get more freemium readers per client than Forrester does (such as IDC).

When I was doing charts for the post on the industry analyst business, I noticed that Forrester’s profits had been shrinking:

Forrester revenue and OpInc

Without looking at the details it was hard to say if this was good or bad (a company can choose to spend profits to grow, invest in the business…or they could just be doing poorly).

Anyhow, this write-up from Duncan Chapple goes over some highlights from recent earnings at FORR.

Forrester Loses $90m from market cap