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April 28, 2006

Take a deep breath. Smell that? It's the Internet.

A week or so ago, Rhode Island announced state-wide WiFi access... not clear if paid or free, but still, wow. Then I was alerted to this article (in spanish), which talks about a successful WiFi connection in Venezuela of 173 MILES! And I just read in the Metro Section of the NY Times that Suffolk County, NY is planning on offering county-wide FREE WiFi and is even considering beaming toward the ocean so boaters can surf too... while catching waves?

So? The proliferation of large-scale, wireless broadband means that use of the Internet will increasingly live off the dektop and out of the home. The possibilities are so endless, it is a tad painful to think about... so, give it a gander.

April 26, 2006

Oreo Handi-Snacks... Insanity or Genius?

So those zany brand managers over at Kraft decided it was time to leverage the Oreo brand and extend the "Handi-Snack®" brand by creating Oreo Cookie Stick 'n Creme.

This seems absolutely insane to me. I mean, sure take all your broken cookies, sell them to Ben & Jerry's for a creamy mashup, but doesn't it seem like snack blasphemy to purposefully separate the Oreo from the creamy middle? Isn't that 98% of the joy of an Oreo? "What's your separation technique? I'm a 'TWISTER.'"

And... they're sticks, not cookies... and isn't it a tad disconcerting to see the vat of white goo just sitting there waiting to either separate into it's chemical components or be merged with a coco-rod?

I don't know... I'm all about evolving the brand, but this seems like corporate desperation to introduce a successful product by diluting two different brands' equity.

Or... it could be cleverly disguised brilliance. I suppose the market will reveal the truth.

April 25, 2006

The Monkey Cluster

There can't be much in this world more enjoyable than an endless stream of monkey photos.

I found a nice cluster of monkey tags over at flickr. Enjoy!

HD a sandbox for creativity

Since the television networks openly missed their deadlines for being 100% HD by whenever the FCC told them to, there are only a handful of HD channels dedicated to the format.

On one hand this sucks, on the other, you have a channel like RAVE which is all HD, Dolby 5.1 concerts produced by PBS. They are incredible.

Seems to me there is a huge opportunity for marketers to sponsor or create HD content while the content fields are relatively untended.

Listening to my fantasy wife Sheryl Crow right now... Looks and sounds GREAT.

April 20, 2006

Look! Up on your roof, a GOOGLE AD!

A very interesting article from the NaturalSearch Blog explores the emerging? advertising niche whereby you paint an unsuspecting roof with your stadium-sized logo which will then be photographed by a defense satellite, loaded into Google's map server and linked to in a variety of map mashups. Crazy MAN! This is better than acid.

Check it out!

Dear Detroit... no wonder you're losing!

THIS is a concept vehicle:

THIS is a concept vehicle:


It's a MARKET TEST! (as evidenced by the survey I had to take asking if I would buy one within the NEXT YEAR, just so I could retrieve the digital photo taken of me and my boys at the Dodge booth.) Apparently it's already been greenlighted for production based on the reaction from earlier shows this year.

Considering the success of Ford's retro Mustang (Have one, LOVE IT!) and Dodge's own Charger, why was this even a question, much less a "Concept Car???"

The only future-exploring concepts at the show seemed to becoming from somewhere far east of NYC. Even the "radical" machines seemed plausible as production cars within a couple of years.

Here's a secret automakers: We KNOW you can whip out concepts fast and furious with today's technology and your resources. You want to excite the public, show us TEN concepts we only wished we could live long enough to experience.

You're getting your innovation lunches eaten by wealthy indie inventors and small, nimble companies.

Get with the program or please get out of the damned passing lane with your turn signal still flashing!

April 19, 2006

If you can't beat 'em, join Google.

That you can now search recipes on Google and it is intuiitive and generates good results is not surprising.

What is surprising is that the content seems to be entirely from the Conde Nast food site, Epicurious. Whenever you find a recipe you like, off you go to the long-standing foodie URL. What's fascinating is that rather than trying to improve their own interface, they dumped the contents of their database into Google's lair. Hmmm.

April 17, 2006

An eenie-meanie Meme Memo

For anyone wondering, a meme is an idea that, like a gene, can replicate and evolve.
Think of it as a unit of cultural information that represents a basic idea that can be transferred from one individual to another and is subject to mutation, crossover and adaptation.
Simply put: "memes are the cultural and idealogical counterpart to genes".


This is probably beyond a meme at this point since so many mashups exist out there, however the latest version of this meme refers to software APIs (Application Programming Interfaces) rather and music or video mashups. A good overview of the "new" mashup can be read HERE.

Two good sources to follow the evolution of this meme/tactic are Programmable Web and Google Maps Mania Blog. The former being a complete resource including a database of APIs available to "mash" and the latter focusing on what creative folks and marketeers can do with a single API.