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A new beginning

Zafar Anjum | Aug. 11, 2008
In the spirit of rejuvenation, we hope you will welcome this portal and make it your intellectual playground and visit it as often as you can for information and nuggets of wisdom.

The other day I was watching a Bollywood film. One of the plotlines in that film is about a struggling male model. His tragedy is that he is unable to land a proper modeling assignment.

One day he bumps into this famous and well-connected but over the hill fashion designer. She takes the hunk under her wings. I know all the powerful people in the advertising industry and I will help you get your big break she promises him. The model thinks that finally lady luck has smiled on him.

But soon, the naïve model finds to his horror that he has to do all kinds of unmentionable favours to her to get his luck turned. He perseveres. He even moves into her apartment hoping to wrest that big break from the jaws of destiny through this ancient siren. His exploitation goes on for months. Whenever the aspiring model enquires about the promised big break, she gives him a stock reply: Darling, there is a right time for everything, haan? Well, that right time never comes for him.

When is the right time? Do we even realize when it arrives and whizzes past us? Thats the point I am trying to make with this anecdote.

What a corny way to get to a point, you might say. I will grant you that but for explanations sake, lets just say perhaps the morning coffee didnt work.

Right time, right opportunity, perfect timingwhatever names you call it, I believe you get hold of it if you are ceaselessly working towards your goal. And if ones goal to stay in business and serve the needs of an ever-evolving customer, its like chasing phantoms on the shifting sands of time. But can one ever be prepared enough for the future? Thats why I love this quote from the guy who invented the Sony Walkman. The only way to predict the future is to create it, he said.

With the launch of the new portal (, thats what we are trying to doand mind you, its a work in progress. But honestly speaking, its more of an act of catching up with the times. Blogs, videos and podcasts, RSS feeds, social networking tags, and user comments on articlesall these are now considered standard fare for websites. We cant even say that the site has gone through a web surgeons knife and come out with a mesmerizing cosmetic makeover. What we have got here is a completely new portal. Only,  it has been powered by our proven war horsesthe content from our four previous websites (publications), namely, Computerworld Singapore, Computerworld Malaysia, CIO Asia and MIS Asia.

That perhaps is the greatest strength of this new portal which is in your hands now (to borrow the well-worn phrase from the publishing world). With the old restrictions of moving around the site gone, now you can surf content from four powerful publications at one place. You can go to the zone of your choice and pick what you want to pick. There is plenty to choose from and plenty more will be added to the site.

Theres nothing grandiose about what we are doing with the portal if you are looking for parallels, its not as spectacular as what China did at the Olympics with all the dazzling choreography and electrifying pyrotechnics and what not, making every Asians spine tingle with joy and pride. Forgive my proclivity for the hyperbole. But truth be told, on our part, we have given this portal our best shot, with the humble realization that the best is yet to come, that there is always room for improvement and that things will keep changing in the next few weeks and months. Changing for the better, I mean. So, even if our spines may not tingle with pride (mine does, though), we certainly feel an onrush of adrenaline in our arteries and veins.

I hope you do feel the same. After all, it has all been done for youto serve you better, to make you an even more empowered reader.

As for the timing, I guess it not bad at all. Its a phase of renewal and rejuvenation for Asia as two of our most strong bases in AsiaSingapore and Malaysiahave just celebrated their national day. The Olympics in Beijing has just taken off with a befitting flourish, and two significant South Asian nationsIndia and Pakistanare about to commemorate their independence day.

Not just the moment, we have company too. Around this time, we are not alone in launching into the future with a new start in this part of the world. Two of Singapores largest media companies have just refurbished their print and online offerings. So, we are not alone.

In the spirit of rejuvenation, we hope you will welcome this portal and make it your intellectual playground and visit it as often as you can for information and nuggets of wisdom. Do let us know what you think of this new home of enterprise IT in Asia, which is also your home. Send us your bouquets and brickbats at

So, what more can I say? Welcome home mate!

Zafar Anjum is the online editor of the MIS Asia portal.


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