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This posting is provided "AS IS" with no warranties, and confers no rights. The opinions expressed within are my own and should not be attributed to any other Individual, Company or the one I work for. I just happen to be a classic techie who is passionate about getting things to work as they should do (and are sometimes advertised and marketed as being able to?) and when I can I drop notes here to help others falling in to the same traps that I have fallen in to. If this has helped then please pass it on - if you feel that I have commented in error or disagree then please feel free to discuss with me either publically or privately? Cheers, Dave
Thin Clients, VDI and Linux integration from the front lines.... Raw and sometimes unedited notes based on my experiences with VMware, Thin Clients, Linux etc.
First of all, sorry for the length of this - and I'll understand if you can't be bothered? but at least go and check out the blog at Sightlines Consulting please?

You know how it is with us self confessed Geeks? You start searching or researching for a particular answer or information and then the power of the HyperLink takes over and before you know it you are in another Metaverse all together, looking around for the breadcrumbs or the piece of string to guide you back to the path?
So it was with me late one night a week or so ago when I came across this link at Sightlines Consulting and I found I could really emphasize with what tfoydel was saying in that the landscape that IT Consulting operates in has changed drastically over the last 5 years, and probably will do even more over the next 5 years, as we are all living pretty close to the bleeding edge in some form or another.
I got interested in what had started his thought - Long Tail - so I checked out the original article in October's Wired Magazine by Chris Anderson, and then went on to examine his continuing Blog where he is discussing at length the details that will be formatted in to a book due out sometime next year. 
What is Long Tail? and why should we be interested in it at all?
It would appear to essentially be a new economy model where, what we have had, is a situation where we have been conditioned by the current "status quo" - where up until recently we have been living in an era where distribution systems are very expensive, Newsagents, Video Stores, Retail Shops, etc. - and this Conventional Wisdom has taught us to think that Popular and Best Selling somehow equates to Good and Quality, regardless of the fact that that we all have individual tastes.
In a Long Tail economy the distribution system (Downloads, Web, Email, Warehouses and regular Post) is relatively cheap and inexpensive, by comparison, and as a consequence we are starting to find that new business models like Amazon and eBay are not only thriving (note that I didn't say profitable?) but are actually becoming frameworks in themselves in assisting others to develop small business that make a tidy turnover based on very specific niche markets.
My viewpoint on this is somewhat heavily biased at the moment because we have just started using GoToAssist back in the office, and this comes back around to what tfoydel was getting at about Consulting being done in the same low cost delivery system. If you no longer have to travel to the Customers Site to actual deliver value, or more importantly  - be seen to be delivering value - then you have drastically cut your expenses, but this is not the greatest benefit, the best part is that you have now increased your potential market by an order of magnitude! because it is no longer restricted by your physical location, and as for increased productivity read my example below!
This sort of remote access gives consultants a "Magic Wand" to actually see what the Customer is talking about and help them start fixing it immediately.  
Why am I biased? Why is GoToAssist a great Tool?
We had a situation last weekend where an upgrade to PS4 and CSG/WI4 went really well, except for the fact that was down on the Saturday so we couldn't get the License sorted until the following day. So I got the call about 2PM, no problem - "The Server Name needs to be in lowercase, not Uppercase", used GoToAssist to show the Admin what and where - Sorted! Back upstairs to the Footy ;-)  20 mins later, another call, "it still won't let more than one user in at a time!"
The upshot of it all was that I still hadn't solved it by 9.30PM, started work on it again the following day at 7.20PM and had finally nailed down that the issue was definitely something to do with the XML Service not working correctly with AD by 5.00PM - I then spent over an hour with a Colleague and I both reviewing where things were at before he continued working on it overnight from his Hotel in Dublin and rebuilding the Farm from scratch.
So all in all, an Outage from 2.00PM Sunday to 5.00AM Tuesday was resolved by two Consultants (One in particular who worked his butt off, I owe you one Matt) effectively working around the clock and putting in 30 hours with neither of us visiting the site. 
It makes me wonder how long it will be before we start seeing consultancy and consultancy services being sold on-line? or billed using a model something like the Legal Profession? every 6 minutes counts......? give me a break
Hopefully I will have moved back to Australia by then, and just maybe you might be able to find me somewhere on the Golf Course  ;-)
Long Tail Consulting -
Please do check out this Blog at Sightlines Consulting, it is a Gem!
Long Tail at Wired -
Long Tail - the Movie length version
Posted on Thursday, December 1, 2005 9:31 PM C500/C600 SmartPhone (or replacement) , Citrix , Exchange and Push Email , IT Management , Real Cool Stuff , Microsoft Tips , VMware and other Virtualization tools , Security | Back to top

Comments on this post: What is a Long Tail economy? and How Consultants *CAN* get their own Magic Wand

# re: What is a Long Tail economy? and How Consultants *CAN* get their own Magic Wand
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very interesting article, i agree with the idea that in the coming years we will see more remote consulting. It's positive for both sides, the consultant wastes less time and money getting to the client location and the client gets lower fares and more flexibility in dates and times. Probably its only downside is that it could push consultancy to be done from india and the like.

Hopefully this also means no more suits and ties :p
Left by julian on Dec 02, 2005 8:02 AM

# re: What is a Long Tail economy? and How Consultants *CAN* get their own Magic Wand
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I recently came across your blog and have been reading along. I thought I would leave my first comment. I dont know what to say except that I have enjoyed reading. Nice blog. I will keep visiting this blog very often.

Left by Alena on Dec 12, 2008 1:28 AM

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