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Here I publish quotes, videos, pictures and other things that I consider inspiring and so worth of being here.

Slides for Presentations and Slides for Handouts

I must keep in mind the “Font size rule” when making a slide for presentation, and the “Minimal text rule” as well… Thanks David!

David Cummings on Startups

Earlier today we put on a program connecting executives from Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta with health IT startups from the Atlanta Tech Village. Seven startups had 15 minutes each — five minutes to present and 10 minutes of Q&A — followed by lunch at the end. Most of the presenters used slides with limited product demos. While the event was a success and everyone received value, five out of seven startups used slides on the big screens that were designed as handouts, not for presentations.

Here are a few thoughts on slides for presentations, as different from slides for handouts:

  • Slides should have minimal text (I like to have no more than 10 words)
  • Font sizes shouldn’t be smaller than half the oldest age in the audience (e.g. if someone in the audience is 60, the font size shouldn’t be smaller than 30)
  • Tell a compelling story while still getting to the value proposition quickly
  • Make the…

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The Four Stages of a B2B Startup

You are never too old to learn. Thanks David Cummings.

David Cummings on Startups

In thinking through the two most recent posts on 5 Ways to Identify Product/Market Fit and 5 Quick Steps to Go From Product/Market Fit Focused to Customer Acquisition Focused, it became clear to me that there’s value in organizing the startup lifecycle into generic stages. With simple stages, it’s easier to communicate and focus in on what’s important when talking with entrepreneurs (e.g. how often have you heard entrepreneurs worrying about scaling their product when they don’t have customers yet).

Here are the four stages of a B2B startup:

  • Stage 1 – Search for Product/Market Fit (1 – 2 years)
    This involves putting the core team together, building a simple version of the product, signing the first 20+ customers, and honing in on the needs of the market. Most startups fail in this stage.
  • Stage 2 – Build a Repeatable Customer Acquisition Process (1 – 2 years)
    This involves…

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Topics and links – April 2014

Relevant information for the upcoming European elections.


Logo AskEP March 2014How can I vote in the upcoming European elections? What can the European Parliament do about the current summer-time arrangement? How does the Parliament protect animal welfare?

Answers to these questions or other citizens’ concerns can be found by consulting our selection of links below.

The following topics are based on questions and comments from citizens writing to the European Parliament.

European elections 2014

With the European elections just around the corner, citizens continue to turn to the EP with many different requests. Some citizens ask for practical information about the elections, others express their state of mind and preoccupations of what improvements the elections can bring.

European elections 2014The following links will guide you to the relevant information:

The 2014 European elections

Your Europe: Elections abroad

EPRS: 2014 European elections: national rules (11-03-2014)

Factsheet on the EP electoral procedures

Any questions on this issue or another EP-related concern? Please use our

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JIM O’NEILL: The Crisis In Ukraine Is Just A Symptom Of Something Much Worse

The Crisis In Ukraine Is Just A Symptom Of Something Much Worse

The crisis surrounding Ukraine shows that global governance is in a mess, but events there are merely a symptom of something larger.

Demonstrations and civil unrest in Ukraine

My visit to Washington for the spring meetings of the International Monetary Fund and World Bank set me wondering whether western democracies are much guiltier than we are prepared to admit.

These meetings took place against the surreal background of the US Congress having failed to pass a bill allowing the IMF to reform in the way that was agreed back in 2010 – a strange decision, as the planned changes to the fund were led by the then-US Treasury Secretary, Tim Geithner.

Those proposals were to increase the IMF’s lending capability as well as to boost the voting share and seats of the major so-called “emerging economic powers” at the expense of others, including Europe.

Without the additional firepower, it makes it more difficult for the fund to intervene in economic crises, including the one engulfing Ukraine.

It is more than ironic that many of the Congressional figures who are calling for aggressive actions towards Russia over the Ukraine crisis are the same ones blocking the reforms of the IMF.

Without foreign financial assistance and economic support, Ukraine’s downward spiral could accelerate, yet there seems to be little recognition of this link.

The stalled 2010 agreement is based around the status quo of the world that existed at the end of 2008 . In those five intervening years, the world economic balance has continued to shift.

China has seen its nominal GDP double since 2008, so any agreements based on the relative size and balance of trade prevailing then are already very much out of date.

It is bigger than the combined GDP of France, Germany and Italy, three European countries which also have an intransigent stance about more substantial global reform.

Even though Brazil and Russia have especially disappointed in the past couple of years, both are within the top 10 economies by size. Collectively, the Bric countries are now nearly as large as the US and already quite a bit larger than the eurozone.

While the other Bric countries probably don’t have much sympathy with Russia on the specifics of the Ukraine issue, they might have broader sympathy with the notion that emerging economies are not allowed a relevant voice in global affairs.

Such thoughts might serve to undermine the legitimacy of global organisations such as the IMF and World Bank, the G20 itself as it morphs into clubs within a club, and encourage the growth of their own club.

My impression, for example, is that there is renewed energy surrounding previous plans to form a Brics Development Bank, and later this year the funding and location for such a body seems set to be announced.

It is not impossible that providing capital for such a new bank might take precedence over additional funding for the IMF if the US Congress continues to stall on the reforms.

Europe is more than a mere bystander in these issues. Obviously as it relates to Ukraine, this crisis is on Europe’s immediate borders and some of the EU’s most eastern members – notably Poland and the other Baltic states – have particularly acute concerns about the crisis.

It continues to be quite tricky for European countries to pursue aggressive sanctions against Russia when many of their leading companies want to do more business there.

I recently attended a well-known economic and financial conference in Italy where delegates were asked about their plans to invest in a variety of economies. Russia came a close second to China in a list of about six emerging economies.

Just before that event, I read of a visit by the chief executive of German industrial giant Siemens to President Vladimir Putin, soon after the annexation of Crimea.

It is things like this that mean I cannot imagine either Germany or Italy leading a push to be really tough with Russia.

European companies need to export beyond their borders to grow their revenues and recover from the economic malaise of recent years.

Being tough and making sacrifices when your own economic challenges suggest the exact opposite requires a grander vision.

Does the EU really have a true vision for the Ukraine?

Does it really have a true vision for the shape of the world in which the EU is going to be positioned? It seems eager to export to China and Russia, but doesn’t really want to engage with them on an equal footing.

In March, I published a paper co-authored with Alessio Terzi for the Brussels-based Bruegel think-tank that discussed the rapidly changing nature of world trade, and the contrasting absence of global economic governance.

In it, we argued that it would be in Europe’s long-term interests to give up its national seats of representation within global organisations and to volunteer either EU or EMU combined seats.

By doing so, it would allow the space for the emerging powers, as well as making it more difficult for the US to not be more adaptable to change.

Indeed, it might even lead to questions as to why the IMF and World Bank would need to be located in the US unless they supported more reform themselves.

The integration of the largest emerging economies into the world economy has been one of the most important positive developments of the past 20 years.

It has allowed hundreds of millions of people in developing nations to escape poverty, as well as permitting western multinationals to develop markets that were unimaginable beforehand.

This continued integration is a very positive thing for the world economy, despite some ongoing adjustment costs for some that struggle to adapt and change.

However, it will not be able to continue unless we can also advance our organisations that are supposed to provide optimal global economic governance.

As I was leaving after my trip to Washington, I was led to believe that Congress might end up passing the IMF bill after November, seven long months away. I was told this to be encouraged, but I would hope for more.

Terence James “Jim” O’Neill

Jim O’Neill is former chairman of Goldman Sachs Asset Management and chairman of education charity Shine (

This post originally appeared at The Telegraph. Copyright 2014.

Global Firepower 2014

Full Ranked List of Global Firepower 2014

Global Firepower 2014

NASA Blue Marble of Western Hemisphere

Global Firepower has finally created the “Power Index” which supplies a nation respective position in the rankings of relative military strenghts.

“War does not determine who is right – only who is left.” Bertrand Russell

Using datas from publicly-available sources such, CIA World Factbook and wikipedia (good source?), The Global Firepower provides an outstanding analytical data regarding 106 military powers. This ranking allow the comparison concerning relative military capabilities. Nuclear capabilities of each nation are not taken into account, the ranking is based on each nation’s conventional war-making capabilities across air, sea and land.

Countries Ranked By Military Strength 2014

A M1A1 tank firing its main gun

  1. United States of America
  2. Russia
  3. China
  4. India
  5. United Kingdom
  6. France
  7. Germany
  8. Turkey
  9. South Korea
  10. Japan
  11. Israel
  12. Italy
  13. Brazil

    Indian Navy’s aircraft carrier, INS Vikramaditya

  14. Pakistan
  15. Canada
  16. Taiwan
  17. Poland
  18. Indonesia
  19. Australia
  20. Ukraine
  21. Iran
  22. Vietnam
  23. Thailand

    PLAAF airmen on parade during a full honors arrival ceremony in 2000. ©Linda D. Kozaryn

  24. Saudi Arabia
  25. Syria
  26. Switzerland
  27. Spain
  28. Sweden
  29. Czech Republic
  30. Algeria
  31. Netherlands
  32. Mexico
  33. Belgium
  34. North Korea
  35. Austria
  36. Philippines
  37. Malasya
  38. Norway
  39. Ethiopia
  40. South Africa

    A New Zealand Army NZLAV at Tekapo Military Camp

  41. United Arab Emirates
  42. Denmark
  43. Singapore
  44. Yemen
  45. Croatia
  46. Nigeria
  47. Uzbekistan
  48. Finland
  49. Azerbaijan
  50. Romania

    IAR 330 Puma Naval ©Codrut Burdujan

  51. Belarus
  52. Portugal
  53. Colombia
  54. Argentina
  55. Bangladesh
  56. Greece
  57. Chile
  58. Peru
  59. Serbia
  60. Hungary
  61. Venezuela

    Coat of Arms Bolivarian Venezuelan Military Aviation ©Kwasura

  62. Kenya
  63. Georgia
  64. Morocco
  65. Tunisia
  66. Jordan
  67. Iraq
  68. Oman
  69. Bulgaria
  70. Slovakia
  71. Mongolia
  72. Angola
  73. Kuwait
  74. Ecuador
  75. Afghanistan
  76. Nepal
  77. Libya
  78. Sudan
  79. Kazakhstan
  80. Bahrain
  81. Qatar

    A pilot with the air force of Qatar performs a preflight check on his Mirage F1 aircraft prior to taking off on a mission during Operation Desert Storm.

  82. Lebanon
  83. Cambodia
  84. New Zeland
  85. Sri Lanka
  86. Democratic Republic of the Congo
  87. Uganda
  88. Paraguay
  89. South Sudan
  90. Bolivia
  91. Nicaragua
  92. Ghana
  93. Slovenia
  94. Zimbabwe
  95. Estonia
  96. Cameroon
  97. Panama
  98. Zambia
  99. Somalia
  100. Uruguay
  101. Laos
  102. Lithuania
  103. Mozambique
  104. Madagascar
  105. Tanzania


The formula behind the Global Firepower utilizes over fifty different factors and compares each nation.

Manpower: total populations, available manpower, fit for service, reaching military age annually, active military manpower, active reserve military manpower.

Land Systems: Tanks (MBT/light), armored fighting vehicles, self-propelled guns, towed artillery pieces, rocket projectors (MLRS).

Air Power: Total aircraft, fighters / interceptors, attack aircraft, trainer aircraft, helicopters, attack helicopters, serviceable airports.

Naval Power: Total strenght, aircraft carriers, frigates, destroyers, corvettes, submarines, patrol craft, mine warfare.

Resources: Oil production, oil consumption, proven oil reserves.

Logistical: Labor force, merchant marine strength, major ports and terminals, roadway coverage, railway coverage.

Financial: annual defense budget, external debt, reserves of foreign exchange and gold, purchasing power parity.

Geographic: Square land area, coastline, shared borders, waterway coverage.

Powers by Region: Africa, Asia-Pacific, Europe, Middle East, North America, South AMerica, Scandinavia.

Miscellaneous: Compare countries, GFP Ranking.