General Thinking

Flights… Flying No Longer

I have some weird interests that I pursue. One of them to sit and watch flights across the planet on flightradar.

On a normal day, there are more 102,000 flights that take off around the world. That number has come down significantly and in the west, all the airlines have done to their governments; bowl in hand. They did the same after 9/11. I believe they should not be spared a dime. They spent all of their cash on share buybacks last year. They don’t deserve the bailout but that is for another post.

While pursuing my strange hobby, this is what I found.

Flight India

India has zero flights flying right now. They could as well just shut the airports and save on electricity. All the planes in the image are overflights from south-east Asia to the middle east or Europe.

Flight Middle East

Continuing from there. The Middle East route, especially over Iran, is usually heavily used by flight flying from Europe to India/South East Asia. almost no traffic in that sector.

Flight Atlantic

I have never in my life seen the Atlantic corridor this empty. There are almost no flights there and the blue ones are cargo planes. Normally, you would not see a single patch of blue.

Flight America

And then America. Now we all know why America is the global leader in CoronaVirus cases across the world.

I normally follow air traffic to see trends in activity around various cities. Air traffic is seen as an indication of the prosperity and inter-connectedness of a city. Usually, air traffic increases before the wealth increases in any place.

This is unprecedented and unlike anything that I have ever seen. Today, the case counts of COVID-19 in various countries reflect the air traffic in those countries. You can compare the flights with this dashboard. It shows!

General Thinking

Its more expensive now…

Not really!

We tend to often assume that things are a lot more expensive now than they used to be and our parents/grandparents would have us completely convinced of the same.

I saw the chart below a few weeks back.

To think that the first digital watch would be $12,000 dollars today. People lost their shit when Apple launched the Apple Watch gold edition which was similarly priced. Some of the most recent products are actually a fraction of the cost.
There is another side to this story. A product launched today can confidently expect a global distribution chain to be available at its service. This was not true even 30 years back. To scale a product across a country would take months IF you had all the cash at your disposal.
Puts the iPhone X launch price of USD 1,000 in perspective does it not.


General Thinking

On Glocal

I have heard this term Glocal often and have wondered what they mean by it. Think Global, build local! What do you really mean by that?

So continuing from the last post I wrote; a phone got lost and we found it using iCloud. While iCloud is a global platform and had a huge role to play, in helping us locate the phone; it would have been good for nothing if the phone had been switched off. Here is where the local knowledge comes to play.

This boy had put his phone inside a bag and left it in the locker. His knowledge of the local scenario prompted him to put a lock on the bag. Now, normally, had a theft occurred the phones would have been switched off immediately. In this particular case, since the bag was locked it was not possible for the robber to even know that there was a phone within. This small lock bought us sufficient time to track down the phone and retrieve it. A fine example of Glocal.

Although you may build for a global reach, the local knowledge is essential to make sure that the impediments on the execution level can be overcome.

Think Global, build local.