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And this is why they're winning

9.28.2006 by Kevin Creighton

A fascinating look at the interior workings of Google.

"The thing that drives the right behavior at Google, more than anything else, more than all the other things combined, is gratitude... First, and arguably most importantly, Google drives behavior through incentives. Engineers working on important projects are, on average, rewarded more than those on less-important projects. You can choose to work on a far-fetched research-y kind of project that may never be practical to anyone, but the work will have to be a reward unto itself. If it turns out you were right and everyone else was wrong (the startup's dream), and your little project turns out to be tremendously impactful, then you'll be rewarded for it. Guaranteed."

Interesting...

9.27.2006 by Kevin Creighton

Steve Rubel gets how Web 2.0 is changing the marketing and PR game better than almost anyone else, and his thoughts on turning RSS Aggregators into ad networks is intriguing.

Are you listening, Netvibes?

A location scout's best friend

9.26.2006 by Kevin Creighton

GPS for your flash shoe.

Nif-tee.

When cameras are outlawed,

by Kevin Creighton

only the outlaws will have cameras?

Using a starter pistol as a means to make sure your camera equipment doesn't get lost on an airplane.

Interesting little hack, there.

One Hundred and Sixty Megapixels

9.25.2006 by Kevin Creighton

*faint*

It is... My Precious!

Hmmmn,

9.21.2006 by Kevin Creighton

I rely on NetVibes to organize my RSS Feeds, so I don't use NetNewsWire, but I've heard nothing but praise for it.

And now it's moving into the realm of hybrid web/desktop apps. Interesting, and definitely the wave of the future.

If I could save time in a bottle...

9.19.2006 by Kevin Creighton

Sorry about the Jim Croce lyrics. I hate him as much as anyone else, but it seemed right.

Today marked an interesting milepost in my digital world: I didn't rely on the scheduling of the mass media once the entire day for what I listened to or what I watched.

Okay, I take that back. I watched the local news around suppertime. But other than that, rather than suffer through the pap that our local radio stations spew, I listened to the inestimable Hugh Hewitt via podcast in my truck, then after dinner, we watched two excellent programs via our new Cox Digital Video Recorder I would have otherwise missed: A tour of four lived-in English castles on HGTV, and a special on the discovery of an ossuary belonging James, the brother of Jesus. And as I type this, the DVR's merrily chugging away, recording Akira Kurosawa's epic samurai fable, Yojimbo, for me to view at my leisure.

What is an noteworthy moment in time to me will be old hat for my two boys and everyone in their generation. What that will mean for broadcasting, we haven't figured out yet.

Who's afraid of the big, bad Vista?

9.18.2006 by Kevin Creighton

The CTO of Cisco is.

Sheep don't need permission

9.14.2006 by Kevin Creighton

Jon's right: upselling is annoying and overdone and kills customer loyalty.

But it's done because of customers like this.



There are some of us who know how the game is played and know we're being marketed to and reward the businesses who treat us like humans. But at the end of the day, this truth remains:

Half the people in the world are of below average intelligence.

Companies treat us like crap because half the time, they can get away with it. A good company though, tries to be more than that. And the great ones actually are.

Cross-posted at Exurbanleague

That thump you just heard

9.12.2006 by Kevin Creighton

Was me fainting over all this new stuff.

I want that iTV box, and I want it NOW!

Hit 'em where they is *

9.11.2006 by Kevin Creighton

* An allusion to this.

Business Week looks at the new online gold rush: marketing to kids/teens via social networking sites.

Maybe I'm hopelessy naive, but I long for the days when kids are no longer a target market. Let them be kids, and not consumers, at least for a while.

Worse than bad

9.09.2006 by Kevin Creighton

A C|Net writer blasts Amazon's new video download service right between the eyes.

"So, in summary, to be allowed the privilege of purchasing a video that I can't burn to DVD and can't watch on my iPod, I have to allow a program to hijack my start-up and force me to login to uninstall it?"

Could be worse. They could be Sony.

Life is imitating art, sorta

9.08.2006 by Kevin Creighton

I loved William Gibson's "Pattern Recognition" and thought it was a great take on modern culture.

And now we're trying to figure out who is Lonelygirl15. But it looks like it may be a viral marketing thing.

The damning "but"

by Kevin Creighton

Lileks came up with that phrase, and I like it.

Amazon.com rolled out their movie download service today, with a good selection of movies and (of course) no Mac support.

But.

"However, any DVDs that you burn with Amazon Unbox files will not be readable by a DVD player."

And with that one sentence, any chance that this will be the iTunes of movies is gone. Actually, any chance this will go beyond just the Home Media PC market is gone, too. You can't even transfer them to your iPod or other media player.

Oops.

Hopefully, Apple won't make that same mistake.

Not-so-great moments in product naming history

9.06.2006 by Kevin Creighton

Way back in the Dark Ages of 2005, Bill Hunt over The Digital Bits made this comment:

"PC Magazine's John C. Dvorak has posted an editorial column on HD-DVD that's well worth a read. His argument is that HD-DVD is likely to win the format war for a variety of practical reasons, from compression to price to backwards-compatibility to copy-protection. It's a well reasoned argument. But he left out perhaps the best argument going for HD-DVD... the letters DVD in the name. That means instant recognition. Consumers already know and love DVD, but they've never heard of Blu-ray Disc before and they have no idea what it is. "

Ok, aside from putting me in the uncomfortable position of agreeing with Dvorak (who I think is right out of his ever-lovin' mind), I agree. Blu-Ray is a great example of a product name that sounds sexy but says very little, and what's worse, what it says is *how* it works (it uses a blue laser for more data on a disc) than *what* it does. The vast majority of consumers aren't bamboozled by facts and figures, but tell them that Product A will do Function Z better Product B (then hit 'em with the facts), and you've got a winner.

HD-DVD - You know right away what it does, and what it uses.
Blu-Ray - Is it a new sport boat? Superhero? Part of the Strategic Defense Initiative?

Doomed from the start.

Quote of the day

9.04.2006 by Kevin Creighton

You've probably missed it, but there's a minor pissing contest going on in the Mac community over whether you can hack a MacBook via it's wireless driver or not. It was started by this (poorly-written) piece in the Washington Post, then Daring Fireball called their bluff, and now one of the (alleged) hackers involved has his panties in a bunch.

From the comments on Slashdot article about this tempest in a teapot:

"Is the exploit real? Who knows, I've seen video of someone cracking a Mac through a wireless driver. Then again I've also seen video of a virus written on a Mac taking down a fleet of invading alien spaceships..."

Nice.

Begun, this movie download war has.

9.02.2006 by Kevin Creighton

Techcrunch is predicting full movie downloads in iTunes this month. And Wal-Mart is ticked off at the pricing.

Funny how Wal-Mart sheds no tears when they undercut the prices at Sunset Video or Tower.

*If* DVD burning is allowed (and until His Steveness annouces it, it's all up in the air), not only Wal-Mart, but Netflix and Blockbuster are in trouble, too.

That shaking you're feeling right now

by Kevin Creighton

is the plates of the earth shifting.

This is big. Really big. Hawthorne Heights (Warning! Annoying auto-play music at that link!) proved that depsite a sucky website, an unsigned band can make it big due to MySpace alone. Now that MySpace will have MP3's galore, the RIAA's chokehold on music distribution has been broken forever.

Power to the (online) people.

Cross-posted at Exurbanleague.

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