What actually is Marketing?

Marketing is Anticipating, and satisfying, customers wants and needs, efficiency and profitability, Marketing includes

  • Market Research
  • The Marketing Mix

What is the purpose of Marketing?

  • To make profit, essentially by improving sales
  • To remind the customer of your product through promotion
  • To see what the customer wants by offering their product
  • To link the product to the brand and create a brand association
  • To communicate and offer competition to other businesses (to compete)

There are two types of business orientations, Business to Business where businesses sell products to other businesses, such as tools, office equipment and building supplies. Business to Customer is more noticeable to individuals as it is more prominent and most common.

Marketing begins by setting a goal or objective that defines what the company wants to achieve, and when it hopes to reach these goals.

They then create a marketing strategy, to outline how they will bring in what they wanted to reach their objective.

the four ps of marketing product price place and promotion marketing mix

What defines a Market?

A market is anywhere that brings together buyers and sellers with a view of exchanging goods and services. The location can be physical, national global, physical or electronic.

A niche market is a small or select group of a larger market. Niche markets generally have a smaller cohort of customers interested in the product, however some businesses sell their products at a high price to compensate for lost sales.

Market size is the total volume or value of all sales of a particular group of products. Market growth is the percentage change in market size over a period of time. Market share is the percentage of the market achieved by one firm, or brand, or product.

Markets can be dynamic, which means they change quickly or stable, where any change is fairly small. Dynamic markets are becoming more and more common as technology advances to new greats, incorporating new techniques mean a business can become obsolete.

How Customers Associate Quality with a Brand

brand qualityWithin any business there are multiple factors that a customer can imprint on to recognise a brand and associate with quality. Businesses can use the customers intuition to their advantage, targeting on the key aspects of a quality product in order to maximise return. Here is a list of the common points a business can tailor in order to maximise their revenue;

 

trusty tea co allows product association quality brand reputation

  • Profitability, Businesses must decide how much profit each product or service should undertake, whether it be a large return or a small one. Customers may be willing to buy a product purely on its premium price point.
  • Customer Service, Businesses may wish to place the quality of their product on par with the quality of its customer service. Poor customer service could reflect badly on a quality product and vice versa.
  • Competitiveness, Businesses may wish to use pricing in order to undercut the cost of its competitors. Businesses may also want to take on new locations and footfall in order to maximise profitability.
  • Supply Chain, Business may cut costs and use cheaper suppliers, however unethical or environmental considerations could be overlooked and come back to haunt businesses later.
  • Reliability, A product that is unreliable or prone to failure may mean that customers look elsewhere for new products, defined obsolescence could damage the perceived quality of the product as well, If it were to fail after a certain time because of a weak part, customers may feel frustrated having to buy new ones.
  • Brand Image, For some customers a brand could be vital to what product they purchase, If a brand is damaged, it could affect the sales of businesses massively. Some businesses may also struggle to maintain a positive reputation if the business specialises in cheap services, such as transport or hotels and may not be too affected by bad publicity as the cheap price point means the demand for the product does not change (it is inelastic).
  • Quality Control could also mean that products are of a constant high quality and should in tern allow a business to work effectively on producing high quality products for the consumer, who will hopefully repeat purchase. Kaizen and Total Quality Management can allow a business to excel at creating a quality product that is lean and high quality as it forces the product to be a standard that the business expects and what the customer wants.
  • Brand Awareness, A customer who does not know a product exist may not buy it, additionally any customer who recognises a product may choose to buy it over a generic product because of it. Advertising and promotion can artificially create the connection between the customer and the brand of trust and safety in a product, that this is the product they should buy.

Advantages and Disadvantages of Capital and Labour Intensive Production

In Business, production generally has two techniques;

  • Labour Intensive Production aims to use a large workforce to complete work by hand, this usually employs a lot of people to create a product. Some products may be seen to have more value if they were manufactured by hand.
  • Capital Intensive Production aims to create a product using as little people as possible, the process could be entirely or partially automated and can sometimes be used to assist individuals in manufacture, such as a custom robotic factory worker that moves parts of a product to assembly, or a robot that screws in multiple screws at once. The aim of these tools is to make the job simple or quicker than manual labour, in order to product multiple product in a given time. Production machinery may be very expensive, but aims to be cheaper than labour intensive production in the long run.

labour intensive production

Labour Intensive Production

Labour costs are higher than capital intensive production, however they can vary. If the task is simple then automation may not be necessary. Labour Intensive production will generally have lower running cost than capital intensive production, as workers will perform most of the tasks. Firms can benifit from access to low-cost labour as the job will likely be low skilled.

  • Businesses can benefit from premium pricing for ‘hand crafted’ goods.
  • There is generally better quality if it is not a fast process.
  • Labour costs can be lower if businesses hire on temporary contracts. Individuals will not need to operate specialised machinery.
  • Some businesses can use a flexible workforce to make sure that locations are staffed efficiently.
  • Labour Intensive production allows for improvement easily compared to capital intensive production.
  • Observation is easier.
  • Lower Break-even output.

automotive-production-line-2 capital intensive production

Capital Intensive Production

  • There is generally a better consistency than manual labour.
  • Businesses can loose competitiveness as they are stuck in the same production technique.
  • Machinery may become obsolete.
  • You can’t make businesses such as a restaurant or hotel capital intensive as customers may feel that their stay was devalued by it.
  • May generate resistance from labour workforce when implementing.
  • Kanban systems are easier to implement.
  • There may be a greater loss if there is a fault.
  • Programmed machines do not loose skill and there is no skill shortage for machines.
  • Potentially High labour costs if individuals need to maintain complex machines.
  • Firms can benefit from access to long term financing.
  • Labour is more specialised so individuals are good at their job.
  • There is usually longer term benefits.
  • Robots do not require pay.
  • Costs are mainly fixed.
  • There is therefore usually a higher break-even output.

How Long Will my Phone Battery Last Before it Dies?

phone battery last before it diesDefined obsolescence has gotten a hold of me again, I will have to purchase a new phone, as my old one is about to expire! I have had my phone for about 2 Years, I recieved it in the summer and It was fairly new at the time, being released in August 2014, My little HTC Desire 610 has been through a lot. It’s had 2 screen protectors, 2 cases and been across 3 networks. Now that It is aged, I have since rooted it and install android Lollipop it has had a new breath of life, However It’s quite slow as a daily driver and I think I will need a new one soon. The battery cover on the back cannot be removed and only the SIM card and External Memory can be replaced. How Unfortunate. But It got me wondering, How long will my phone battery last before it dies.

Some people wonder how long their phone battery will last before it dies, before it basically doesn’t hold a charge and it’s battery life is no longer able to last a day.I however know that answer, my phone will die on approximately Saturday, December 24th 2016 at 8:20 am, as at this point it will no longer hold a charge. How do I know this? Let me explain…

Data Collection

Firstly, I needed to collect data to predict when my phone was degrading in battery life, I decided that the easiest measurable metric would be when my phone was plugged in. Because I would usually do this when I got in from home, It did not require me collecting any data as it could all be done automatically. I know this isn’t the most precise method for multiple reasons, such as I may not always plug my phone in at the same time, the phone may not always record the results (as you will see) and the percentage when i plug it in is not an accurate assumption of health. However my findings did show a trend that shows the battery is degrading at about 0.000109% every minute, which gives me 7 and a half months to buy a new one.

Recording the Results

To record the results I used Google Drive and IFTTT to note down the percentage charge at the times the phone was disconnected and reconnected from power. It also recorded the charge type, such as USB,AC or an external Battery. This could potentially also alter my results as the percentage increase would vary over different mediums of charge, so I eliminated all but AC power, as this was always from the same plug and USB lead. So, How did I calculate how long will my phone battery last before it dies?

The recipe I used is nearly identical to this one, I made one for it being plugged in and one for it being unplugged. the data ended up looking like this.

Date and TimeStatusBattery PercentagePower Source
March 11, 2016 at 04:19PMUnplugged41
March 11, 2016 at 04:19PMCharging41AC
March 11, 2016 at 04:33PMUnplugged50
March 11, 2016 at 04:34PMCharging49AC
March 11, 2016 at 04:37PMUnplugged52
March 11, 2016 at 04:39PMCharging52AC
March 11, 2016 at 04:44PMUnplugged56
March 11, 2016 at 04:45PMCharging56AC

As you can see at this time I unplugged the device multiple times over 25 minutes to read emails and texts or whatever showed up on my phone. I was interested in this, so charted the occurrences of a date and time, and found that I had unplugged and plugged in again my phone four times in 1 minute at maximum, and had unplugged and plugged in my phone over 249 times. Here are the occurrences, excluding dates where I did not plug in my phone as although it would contribute to how long will my phone battery last before it dies, it did not trigger the app.

phone unplug replug showing Battery Last before It Dies

This also got me wondering how many times a day I unplugged my phone, If you look at the data, It shows that, for example, on the 20th of February, a Saturday, I unplugged my phone 16 times.

times phone was unplugged on a given day showing Battery Last before It Dies

It seems that for about a week during march I was unplugging my phone a lot, and I can’t really see a connection, I was at school on the 11th, I guess I must have been heavily using my phone over that period. The more perceptive of you will have noticed that the entire month of April is omitted, that is because the data was not recorded as I had been logged out of the IFTTT app, I did not realise until later when I re-enabled it, Having the empty months would alter the data so I have removed them from the results. Perhaps I shouldn’t worry how long will my phone battery last before it dies and instead how long the connector will last.

So How Long Will My Phone Battery Last Before It Dies?

phone plug in showing Battery Last before It Dies

This graph shows every event recorded, including when I was not recording the phone being plugged in, It clearly shows, using a linear trendline, that there is a decline in the battery percentage. Which shows my phone’s average battery percentage when being plugged in, when it reaches 0%, which I have decided is to be a dead battery, in 336101 Minutes, or 5602 hours. Coincidentally, It dies on Christmas Eve, the perfect time to be gifted a new phone ;).

Simulating a phone combination brute force

 

If a malicious individual were to steal your android or iPhone, plug in a device to emulate a keyboard and have it test every single pass code possible, it would take a while, using the following tutorial, you can calculate the time It would take to do so.

Screenshot_2016-03-02-16-46-31

 

 

 

 

 

 

Firstly, you need to grab Python 3.4.3, or you can probably use the version you have installed. Next we need to create the code.

Firstly we need to import datetime to convert the guesses into time it would have taken, we also need to write down what the combination is, for this example, it will be ‘3502’.

import datetime
combination = "3502"

print (" [Info] Starting")

Then we need to add a guess and how long has passed while performing a guess, as it takes time to enter the numbers into the device, we will simulate this as well as 1 second.

guess = "0000"
seconds_taken = 0

def addsec(seconds):
     global seconds_taken
     seconds_taken = seconds_taken + seconds

I could have added the seconds section into the code directly, but adding as a def allowed me to edit it if I needed to, now that we have done the basics, we need to start guessing, there are 10,000 possible combinations, thats combinations such as 0001, this is problematic as leading zeros will not be carried over into integers in python, we can fix this using .zfill(4), which will add the leading zeros back into the guess, allowing us to compare it with the actual combination. This also means that we can convert the guess back into an integer in order to see if we have exceeded our limit. We also need to add a second for a combination guess.

def addsec(seconds):
     global seconds_taken
     seconds_taken = seconds_taken + seconds

while int(guess) <= 9999:
     addsec(1)
     if guess.zfill(4) == combination:
          print (" [Alert] Combination guessed, combination is " + combination)
          break
     else:
          guess = str(int(guess) + 1)
          print (" [Info] Guess is now '" + str(guess).zfill(4) + "'")

Finally, we need to convert our result into a time, we can do this by dividing our seconds_taken (which is coincidentally the number of guesses if you add one for ‘0000’) by 5 (because it takes 5 guesses before a penalty), and then tuning that into an integer, rounding down and then multiplying by 300, to simulate 5 minutes lockout. then we combine penalties_incurred and seconds_taken, to get the time it takes to guess the combination (in seconds), then use that to convert into an hh:mm:ss format, using datetime.

penalties_incurred = int(seconds_taken / 5) * 300
time_taken = (str(datetime.timedelta(seconds=(penalties_incurred + seconds_taken))))
print (" [Finished] The combination would have taken '" + time_taken + "' to brute force. (h:m:s)")
print (" [Finished] You would have had to wait for " + str(int(penalties_incurred / 300)) + " lockout session(s)" )

What have we learnt?

  • There are 10,000 possible combinations.
  • For my combination, it would take 6 days, 30 minutes to guess.

On an Android Device,

  • It would take over 2,000 lockouts to guess every combination.
  • It would take 7 days, 1 hour, 26 minutes and 40 seconds to guess every combination.
  • It would take 8 hours, 28 minutes and 20 seconds to guess 500 combinations.
  • It would take 50 minutes and 50 seconds to guess 50 combinations, with 10 lockouts.

On an Apple Device*,

  • It would take 1666 lockouts to guess every combination.
  • It would take 5 days, 21 hours, 36 minutes and 40 seconds to guess every combination.
  • It would take 7 hours, 3 mintes and 20 seconds to guess 500 combinations.
  • It would take 40 minutes and 50 seconds to guess 50 combinations, with 8 lockouts.

*However, apple wipes their devices after 11 bad combinations, to avoid this, the combinations would have to be entered correctly after the sixth try in order for the apple device estimates to be correct, which defeats the purpose of brute forcing, for that reason apple devices are much more secure, however there is potential for data to be deleted accidentally.

This simulation is flawed because,

  • It does not take into account combinations greater than 4 digits
  • It does not take into account cumulative waiting times
  • It does not take into account device combinations that don’t involve numbers
  • You could increase the number of digits allowed in order to calculate your combination, for example if it was 67890, replacing the 13th line with 99999 would allow you to calculate it.

Here is the full code extract,

Bukkit has been given a DMCA takedown by Wesley Wolfie. The NEXT steps.

It is currently well known that bukkit has been given a dmca request by Wesley Wolfie, but now that that has happened, we now need to rebuild!

So here is whats happening, the folks over from bukkit are now working on a new modding api, called sponge! currently ‘Sponge will start with Minecraft 1.8, with Vanilla Client Support on Forge.’

Old plugins that were written on bukkit will most likely have to be removed, unless someone finds a way to make them compatible with sponge.

Here is a large extract of what they plan to do.

Our ultimate goal is to create a modding API that is easy to use for owners of small servers for friends and family, owners of large servers, and everyone in between. In addition, we also plan to permit client modding.

  • Sponge mods should work across several different Minecraft versions without needing an update from the developer, which means that you don’t have to worry about all your mods breaking between each new major release of Minecraft (1.6, 1.7, 1.8, etc.).
  • Sponge will support official interoperability with Forge so you can use both Sponge mods and Forge mods together. We are working directly with the Forge team.
  • While Sponge will not be directly supporting Bukkit, community projects have been started that aim to provide complete support for existing Bukkit plugins on top of Sponge

the whole plan can be found here

 

Good Luck to you all

 

EDIT, also check out PROJECT RAINBOW, they currently have downloads and plugins up for grabs.

How to setup MMS on O2 pay & Go Go Go

I recently had a problem with O2’s pay and go go go sim, where I was unable to send MMS or group text people, after a couple conversations with O2 chat and some form help, I was able to finally get it working, perviously when I tried to send an MMS or Photo, I would get the message ‘MMS blocked by Carrier’. But this solution should fix it for you, as it did for me.

The first issue I had was that my apn settings were wrong, here is how to fix it, your settings may vary, but essentially you need to get to your ‘APN’ settings menu in your phone, usually it is
Settings > General > Mobile Data > Mobile Data Network > APN
and for Iphones it is
Settings > Mobile > Mobile Data Network > APN
and for me it was ‘Quick settings’, then tap and hold ‘Mobile Data’ and select ‘Access Point Names’, see below.(I have a HTC Desire 610, but this may apply to most HTC’s)

Screenshot_2014-10-05-19-07-04
Tap and Hold ‘Mobile Data’
Screenshot_2014-10-05-19-31-07
Select ‘Access Point Names’
Screenshot_2014-10-05-19-08-34
Do as necessary

 

Now you have located the menu, you should probably reset your ‘APN’ settings to default, you can do this by pressing the menu button and pressing ‘reset to default’, this stap is technically optional and may straight out fix your problem, so it may be a good idea to check it out. Once you have done that, you should have the following APN; (these may vary from phone to phone)

Name – ‘O2 Pay & Go’
APN – ‘payandgo.o2.co.uk’
Proxy – Not Set
Port – Not Set
Username – ‘payandgo’
Password – ‘password’
Server – Not Set
MMSC – ‘http://mmsc.mms.o2.co.uk:8002’
MMS Proxy – ‘82.132.254.1’
MMS Port – ‘8080’
MMS Protocol – ‘WAP 2.0’ (2.0)
MCC – ‘234’
MNC – ’10’
Authentication type – Not Set
APN type – ‘default,hipri,dun,supl,mms’
Bearer – Unspecified

Now save.

(Settings may vary from phone to phone, so make educated decisions if you are stuck, or Google your specific phone settings for O2 (Or your Carrier).)

You now need to add a new APN for MMS, note that you should have 2 APN’s one for Calls, texts and Internet, and one for MMS. Give it the following settings;

Name – ‘O2 MMS’
APN – ‘wap.o2.co.uk’
Proxy – ‘http://wap.o2.co.uk’
Port – ‘9201’
Username – ‘o2wap’
Password – ‘password’
Server – ‘http://mmsc.mms.o2.co.uk:8002’
MMSC – ‘http://mmsc.mms.o2.co.uk:8002’
MMS Proxy – ‘193.113.200.195’
MMS Port – ‘8080’
MMS Protocol – ‘WAP 2.0’ (2.0)
MCC – ‘234’
MNC – ’10’
Authentication type – Not Set
APN type – ‘mms’
Bearer – Unspecified

Now save.

(Settings may vary from phone to phone, so make educated decisions if you are stuck, or Google your specific phone settings for O2 (Or your Carrier).)

You should now have two APN’s and should now be able to use calls,texts,internet and mms (as well as group messaging and photo sending) on O2 Pay and Go Go Go.

Bigger, Better, Faster, Stronger?

Were back! and were faster than ever, well over 140% faster to be precise, out with Xampp on windows, in with Ubuntu Webmin!

Wait… Webmin isn’t that taboo? Well, yes, it is but its got loads of features and is really easy to do otherwise time consuming tasks that could take minutes and turn that into a couple of seconds, for example, adding a virtual host to apache2 would require FTP and a bit of nifty .txt editing, but with webmin, its a couple of clicks away, practical in the long run, but it does have it’s drawbacks.

Webmin with Bootstrap 3 theme.

 

Plus webmin is easy to use and quick to configure, so Ill be doing a couple tutorials on that soon enough!