"It's yet another in a long series of diversions in an attempt to avoid responsibility." - Chris Knight

A Study Into A Successful Digital Enterprise

May 20, 2008 - 11:13 am - Posted by Scott (guest blogger)

How do you go from being a start-up company in 2007 to being a successful and profitable digital enterprise in just 6 years? Well if you are Wonga.com, you achieve that success by starting with a workable idea that has never been tried, trusting your own judgment when people tell you it can’t be done, learning from your mistakes and correcting them.

The Idea

Wonga began with the idea that they could provide an alternative to traditional bank loans. Their goal was to lend money on a short term basis, that didn’t require all the paperwork, faxes, and waits that often accompanied even the smallest bank loans. However, unlike payday loans they wanted to give the borrower some say into how much money he wanted to borrow and how long he needed to pay it back. The idea behind this financial assistance was different from the already established pay day loans in that Wonga planned on only lending money to those who could reliably pay back those loans. They used a special algorithm to determine rapidly determine the risk of either potential borrow. The Algorithm was based on traditional methods of credit risk assessment.

Learning From Their Mistakes

It didn’t take long to realize that the traditional methods of credit risk assessment did not work, and with 50% of the loans this company approved ending up in default most companies would have thrown in the towel.

However, Wonga used these early failures as a way to collect information on customer data and used this information to develop their own proprietary risk technology. The time spent in this development proved to be worthwhile and when the company relaunched in 2008 and continue using their mistakes to develop better risk assessment technologies that drastically improved the company’s ability to assess those who were likely to pay back the loans and those who were likely to default.
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Clean Archives Version 4.3 Released

May 18, 2008 - 11:44 pm - Posted by iDunzo

Small update to allow Clean Archives to work with WordPress version 2.5.x and above including 2.6.x.

Please note that if you are running an older version of WordPress prior to release 2.5.x, you will either need to run Clean Archives 4.2 or 2.2. Check the clean archives project page for more information.

A completely rewritten version of clean archives is in the works and should be released within the next couple of weeks, so keep checking back for more information.

Thanks for your continued support.

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Cool Website Features

April 25, 2008 - 11:18 am - Posted by Scott (guest blogger)

The advantage of the internet at present is that every single day, new features are being released to make our experiences on the web even greater. A few years ago, you had to be very careful what web design company you worked with, because it was an extremely difficult process to carry out professionally and for value. However, today, there are a lot of people who run successful web design businesses from the comfort of their bedroom, selling high quality websites that come with great features for extremely cheap prices.

However, the only downside to the snowball of technology we see on a daily basis on the web is that it can be a little bit difficult to keep up with the latest trends. Even with the influx of talented web designers who can provide you with a functional and professional website, there is still the feeling that for the average small business owner and blogger, the features which can really set you apart from the fat-cats is simply outside of your price range.

Slowly, however, this has been a changing environment – to get a complete e-commerce website with all the bells and whistles, you were talking $10,000+ up until the recent past. Now, with the power of the likes of WordPress, you can create widget-heavy websites that come with a professional look and sleek design for anything from $500 upwards. Considering this used to get you a Home page and a generic set of stock photos, this could be the revolution that your business needs to get itself the real benefits of online business.
If you are looking into getting a new website, and are not sure what type of features you require, and do not want to pay for extras that provide you with no real bonuses, then look no further. We want to look at five different must have features for your website;

Responsive Design – Responsive Design websites are websites that fit to both mobile and computer screens. This is massive; did you know that by 2014, more people will be using mobile devices to surf the web than laptops and desktops? This means that having a website which can really fit both ends of the spectrum is going to be vital to your website seeing successive hits. For an example of what I’m talking about check out the site wonga.co.za on your PC browser, then check out the same site on your smartphone browser. You’ll notice how the site undergoes coded changes to its design that serves to optimise the site structure and usability of the webpage exclusively for phone browsers, pretty cool right?

E-Commerce – It is integral to your business that if you sell anything, you can sell it online, too. E-Commerce allows you to sell products online to your clients with no fuss whatsoever. If you sell anything – services, products, anything at all – then you need to have an E-Commerce section to your website to allow you to compete and make extra money through pre-sold online leads.
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Google Tweaks Gmail Calendar Sync

April 23, 2008 - 11:25 am - Posted by iDunzo

Google first offered up the ability to sync your Gmail and Outlook calendars in early March.

Since then, it’s received a bunch of feedback on the usability of the product and has decided to make some changes. The changes are welcome, indeed.

Making sure calendars between devices, platforms, and PCs are all in sync can be a serious pain.

Last month, Google sought to lessen some of that pain with its Google Calendar Sync product.

Unfortunately, it didn’t quite go all the way. Users sent in feedback on a few issues, and Google felt an update was necessary.

The Official Gmail Blog wrote up a brief entry explaining the changes. It said:

“Previously, your Google Calendar e-mail address needed to be the organizer or an attendee of your Microsoft Outlook events for the Outlook events to sync to your Google Calendar. Now, when you choose to do a 2-way sync or a 1-way sync from Outlook calendar to Google Calendar, all of your Outlook events will be synced to your Google Calendar.”

This latest enhancement should relieve some frustration of users who were caught in the organizer/attendee web.

Google is auto-updating people who use the sync program, but if you’re impatient and want to download it directly, you can. The new version is 0.9.3.2.

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Time lapse video of Google Doodle creation

February 14, 2008 - 7:48 pm - Posted by iDunzo

A time lapse video that shows Chief Google Doodler Dennis Hwang draw a Google Doodle from start to finish.

He creates a doodle that commemorates the Lunar New Year and invites students to join the Doodle 4 Google art competition.

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Factors involved: Making one of the best business websites

February 12, 2008 - 11:01 am - Posted by Scott (guest blogger)

With web design growing all the time across the world, it’s important to make sure that you work with the right company and also get the best bang for your buck that you possibly can. With so many talented designers out there, all working for different prices and distinctions, you can really afford to pick and choose your designer.

However, one common misconception among business owners is that a cheap website will do – this is not the case, certainly not for a business that wants to attract customers. A business website needs to have a clean, sleek and professional look to it, it needs to have some key features and then also as much customer usability and support integration as is possible in your budget. What do I mean by all this? Perhaps it’s better seen in an example – look at Wongaforbusiness.com in your browser. What you may notice after the slider tool is the sheer amount of information being presented to visitors landing on the homepage, there’s essentially everything a first time visitor could want to know right there on one page – this usability and convenience is something you should look to incorporate yourself.
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