Wednesday, September 22, 2010

NBC's Community Using Twitter to Debut

NBC’s Community will debut a “Twittersode” just prior to the comedy’s Sept. 23 return.

Over the course of 80 tweets (starting at 7 p.m. ET/4 p.m. PT Thursday), the characters will communicate back and forth in what’s described as a “prequel” scene to their return to Greendale Community College as sophomores. They’ll make arrangements for their first meet-up of the year, as well as preparations for their first class, Anthropology 101 (taught by guest star Betty White). You can watch the Twittersode unfold on www.NBC.COM/CommunityTwittersode, or, of course, in your Twitter feed, if you follow the individual characters. (Here’s that excuse you’ve been needing to check out @AnniesB00bs. Full list of the characters’ official Twitter accounts below.)

Now that creative!

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Stop-motion: The making of Dot

It never ceases to amaze me the things you can do with technology these days. Yes, I'm impressed by the film, but I'm way more impressed by the implications this CellScope can have for public health professionals. It gives me hope for the world.

The 'World's Smallest Stop-Motion Film' was made using a 9mm resin character for Dot, Nokia N8's 12 megapixel camera and a CellScope. The people behind the film, UK studio Aardman, (yes, the same guys who made Wallace and Gromit!) discuss how it was made here:

The Making Of Nokia 'Dot' from Sumo Science on Vimeo.

Watch the entire film here:

Friday, September 10, 2010

How To Start A Movement

Lessons on How To Start A Movement from Derek Sivers:
  • "A leader needs the guts to stand out and be ridiculed."
  • What the leader does must be easy to follow.
  • The first follower plays a crucial role - an "underestimated form of leadership."
  • The first follower is what "transforms a lone nut into a leader."
  • The leader must embrace the first follower as an equal.
  • A movement must be public.
  • New followers emulate the follower, not the leader.
  • Eventually, the perceived "risk" of joining the movement shifts - the tipping point - where joining is less "risky" than not joining.
  • "Leadership" is overglorified. The real power of the movement is in the followers.

On a sidenote, I actually did this exact presentation about six months ago (before I saw the TED video) but now I feel like it'd be plagiarism if I posted my own. Ah well.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Google Real Time Search is Real-ly Here!

Excuse the corny blog title, but it's finally here!

Google first introduced us to real-time search last December, bringing users the most relevant and freshest content on the web from a plethora of sources - editorial as well as user generated - integrated right into typical search results.

Today's roll-out gives real-time information it's own home as well as a powerful set of tools to navigate and manage these results, including:
  • Live results which updates as the user types text into the search bar. 
  • Search results simply by pressing a single letter key. Results are based on Google's best guess at what you will end up typing, as predicted by Google Suggest.
  • Geographic refinements to find local updates and news, or within a specified region.
  • Conversations view, to easily follow a discussion on the real-time web. Tweets are organized from oldest to newest and indent to quickly see how the conversation developed.
  • Updates content to Google Alerts, making it easy to stay informed about a topic of choice. Users can create an alert specifically for “updates” to get an email the moment that topic appears on Twitter or other short-form services.
This is pretty f'ing cool. I did a realtime search for 'Google Instant' and here's what I got:

Some initial thoughts:
  • Google is pitching the primary benefit of Google Instant to be faster searches, but I think it seems most useful in facilitating more precise, refined searches and consequently, saving time.
  • Procrastination just got a whole lot easier. Google Instant is similar to StumbleUpon - it can lead me to something that I wasn't looking for, but might be interesting anyway.
  • Search marketing just got a whole lot more complicated. 
  • The system has a glitch - adding a space at the end of a search can throw Instant off it's game. For example, a search for "tacos" brings up local business results and a map. Add a space and now Google thinks you're looking for tacos al pastor, with no local results
  • Filtering results by time of day could have some intriguing applications for monitoring brand sentinment and/or brand receptivity over an average day
  • Google instant is PG-13. Even with Safesearch turned off, typing in explicit terms returns no results.(I believe this can be turned off)
  • Above all else, Google Instant is surprisingly satisfying. Search can be insanely frustrating, with infinite word combination possibilities, and Instant is clearing some of those nuisances away.
It's too soon to understand what impact Instant will have until I've experimented with it more, but on a personal level, I'm diggin' it. Will it help me do my job as an advertiser better? I guess I can't say just yet.

Google Realtime Search can be accessed at it's own address,

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Uniqlo Tweets Down Prices

This is a pretty nifty way to encourage engagement and participation from their consumers. Uniqlo is taking the two things that all consumers love - discounts and power - and combining it in this unique (pun intended) sale. Nicely done.

The Future of Screen Technology

It's not flying cars and robot servants, but I think I'd be very happy with this future, and I can think of a few hundred dozen people who would agree.

I don't want to 'engage' with a sausage.

via Get Shouty


Friday, September 3, 2010

What Makes Your Day?

I've been obsessed with Positive Psychology for the last year or so - both the theoretical side as well as putting it into practice. The most simplistic way to explain this branch of psychology is to call it the psychology of happiness - it focuses wholely on understanding what makes people happy, and ways to amplify that happiness.

Anyway, a founding tenet of this branch of psychology is figuring out ways "to make normal life more fulfilling." In my experience, this often means making a concerted effort to appreciate the little, everyday things and being consciously grateful for them.

The video below, entitled 'What makes your day' is a perfect example of this - it captures some pieces of happiness from different people in different places (and I  especially love the closing line - "That wets my whistle nicely").

WHAT MAKES YOUR DAY? from Napatsawan Chirayukool on Vimeo.

It got me thinking about some of the things that have been making me happy lately.
  1. Someone complimenting my dog
  2. Raisin nut bran cereal in the morning
  3. Getting a good night's sleep
  4. Knowing that I have a laid-back weekend
  5. Having goals
  6. Mastering a new recipe
  7. Dog beach
  8. The beginning of fall
  9. Having more time to read
  10. Talking to a stranger
There's a sliver of my happiness. What's on your list?