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Monday, August 31, 2009

On being Roamadic ...

If you're not insecure about your long term career options ... you must already be a "Roamad" at heart. Corporate "downsizing" and "redistributing of reponsibility" is assuring you're doing more in the same time ... and if you aren't using mobile tech ... well, we hope your office has a comfy couch to sleep on.

The term "road warrior" feels painfully out of place as we stand shoeless and stripped of all metal as we pass through security at nameless airports ... but we are fierce road nomads (ie; Roamads) as we choose new tech to ease our overburdened lifestyles.

From telecommuting to new methods of mobile media production ... the ground under our feet is moving. In film, it's not just production that's going mobile, the theater itself is going mobile. Understanding that experiencing film is NOT just about renting DVDs and watching at home (even if you have a 60" HDTV!) ...

As a kid growing up in remote parts of the Andes, I recall fondly the small darkened rooms where we could go on Saturdays and not just see a movie (usually 12-20 years out of current release) ... but experience the enjoyment of talking to others and feeling a part of the performance. The flickering light of the projector somehow spoke it's own language which we all understood beyond the subtitles.

Tilda Swinton and Mark Cousins have put just such a cinematic experience on the road in the Highlands of Scotland. Believing that there is still magic in movies, Tilda and crew "are going to pull a 37 tonne cinema on wheels across it, from its crashing Atlantic waves to the dolphins of the Moray Firth. We’ll get hot and sweaty, or drenched with rain, and bitten by midges, and we might get blisters on our fingers and toes, but we’ll show flickering, splendid dream movies as we go, in a cockeyed caravan, like clowns or dafties, or kids...".

Just wish I could held pull for this cause in person. If you happen to be lucky enough to be in the Scottish Highlands, do check them out ... and pull a little!

Thursday, November 06, 2008

A Time For Change

Barack Obamas election resoundingly proves that America has grown beyond the mindless, apathetic, self-absorbed nation of George W. Bush. At a time of crisis post 9/11, the wild and angry flag mongering masked an ugly note of racism and prejudice. Clearly our nation rejects this ... hopefully once and for all. Congratulations Mr. Obama. Your clear and sobering message reflects our common sentiment that crosses race, creed and religion. In this time of change, Americans of principle stand with you.

Wednesday, October 08, 2008

A Time to Dream ... of something better.

"Life is full of Trials ... with an occasional conviction"
Sir Thomas Dewar was way ahead of his time a flair for summarizing the important in deadly one-liners. With all that's going on economically and politically, this may be a good time to revisit the spirit of his good humored wisdom even if not imbibing his "spirits" to do so. (Though a wee dram has been occasionally known to assist).

"It's a wicked world, that's why nobody wants to leave." With all our financial moaning we are quickly losing sight of a key fundamental ... money and happiness are not one and the same. In an age of invention, with devices in our hands not even dreamed of in Sci-Fi a few decades ago ... most of us still don't have a clue how to be "content". Not wildly ectatic, not even completely happy ... just being content with life. We put our sense of direction into material rewards and measure ourselves like a racehorse, then agonize over the resulting disappointment rather than the ground gained.The need for expectation management has been a big part of my role in life, both with clients and friends ... and I have needed a lot of help here too. It is really hard to moderate one's own sense of success or failure. We need friends who are honest and real. "Don't question your wife's judgment. Look who she married."

So grab you friends, family and co-workers and tell them the truth. It's not about money, big houses, fast cars and gadgets ... its about living each day as though it were your last. Yeah, you've heard that one before, but did you ever really listen and understand? Those who have had near death experiences are changed forever.

It's time to stop looking at what divides us as people, families, political parties, countries ... it's time to start Dreaming and taking the small daily steps that make Dreams come to life. The world needs more Dreamers ... so join us here. Put down the financial reports, bills, news and editorials. Reach out to your closest friends in need and tell them you're there. Help a stranger. Write something down. Read you kids a book ... or maybe just talk to them for a change. Let yourself Dream ... and to all Americans, by all means VOTE from your heart!

Tuesday, January 01, 2008

2008, The Year of You and "Force Feedback"

Whew ... wasn't sure we would make it but here we are ... 2008 in all it's glory. (well at least it's here, glorious on not!) Let us all hope that 2008 becomes a turning point for us all personally, politically and socially. On a Global level we deserve better, but it's up to us to demand it!

Yes, I realize I've been very quiet for quite a while ... but by no means inactive! I've been immersed in the New and have a lot to share. The world of audience experience has been deeply on my mind and is where I have been putting my focus. Not just large group audiences but audiences of one ... like you. Not just in theatres or online, but in permutations across daily life.

The bad news is that people like us have been getting short shrift ... the good news is that it looks like 2008 is the year when some major shifts are in motion to change all that. From retail stores where customers are insisting on a better level of customer information, service and value ... to digital games where "force feedback" on player motions has made the Wii platform the far and away winner in the gaming console arena ... audiences are taking control of what they watch, buy and do. No longer willing to be passive recipients, customers and audiences are insisting there is more and they want it. Consumer brands, media companies and everybody else ... take note.

I'm going to be taking a trip across experiences large and small where the audience, large and small, is being cherished and nurtured. Come back and join me once in a while.

For starters, take a look at TED and some "Ideas worth spreading"... (we'll be visiting TED a lot) ... this one is about digital interfaces and what will be the beginning of a new era in user experiences.

Happy 2008 to All!!

Friday, June 10, 2005

Much Ado About Nothing

Apples from IBM to Intel, Oh My! Please give me a break ... in actuality Steve Jobs choice says far less about the future of the Mac than the bigger question of Apple still deluding itself that a closed architecture will ever become the mainstream consumer choice. Regardless of chips IBM, Intel, AMD or any other ... the mantra to remain in the closed systems business will prove far more consequential.

More than modest success with personal electronics (read iPOD) has once again blinded Apple to the technocultural rule that humbled even mighty Sony with Betamax. (For those of you under 30, Sony Betamax was a 1/2" videotape format superior to JVC's VHS ... but lost everything because Sony kept the hardware proprietary. JVC made development open and licensing cheap and the rest is history ... and if you don't recall what videotape is, well there's always Google!)

Apples poor peripheral vision is a direct consequence of Steve, who caboshed the only open architecture experiment Apple ever dared in 1996 after resuming the helm. The (less than stellar) rise of Apple products since is more due to the Macoholic cult spirit than good tech strategy.

Having both PC & Mac platforms on my desk ... and appreciating each for what it does well ... it simply strikes as more posturing than revelation. The hardware business will get increasingly feature, software and price competitive ... all of which will continue to put Apple at an unnecessary disadvantage. It may take a bolder breed of management to unshackle Apple from the bondage of old thinking ... and by then the opportunity for them to manifest the truly innovative user architecture that has made Macs special all along may be gone.

Here's hoping not.

Thursday, June 09, 2005

Flaming Nazi Gasbags

What's the difference between the Hindenberg and Rush Limbaugh? One is a flaming Nazi gasbag and the other was a zeppelin. In his latest pathetic, Vicodin-inspired rant, Rush claims to be the UberPodFuhrer.

From Frank Barnako @; "In a posting on his Web log, Rush Limbaugh disputed the Apple founder's statement that podcasting is the hottest thing in radio. Limbaugh countered: "I am the hottest thing in podcasting." Limbaugh has begun offering podcasts of programs to subscribers of his online fan club. "This program is the hottest thing in podcasting," he claimed."

Sadly there are no spam filters that can stifle Rush except the Power Off switch ... and as P T Barnum noted, "No one ever lost money underestimating the taste of the American public", an adage sadly proven all too true by Limbaugh’s success. Fortunately, his penchant for hypocrisy, paranoia and self-serving bluster should prove a self-eliminating problem solver.