Thursday, July 29, 2010

Levi's Print Shop in San Francisco

I really love this!  Levi's has set up a Print Shop in San Francisco, where locals can come in and do printing work or attend printing classes.  You can print anything, from posters & note cards to T-shirts, but to a maximum run of 50 (20 for T-shirts), or more if you bring your own stuff to print on.  Foursquare lists 68 unique visitors so far.

What a great idea.  If this was in London I'd definitely go down.

It's part of Levi's new focus on 'Work' and their heritage, and they're hoping to open several of these across America.

It's also a great example of what people are calling 'post-digital' - this isn't a digital initiative per se, but digital media enables and enhances it.  It takes the whole digitasl world for granted.

See also their recent 'urban regeneration' project.

More here

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

TrollSpotting in Skane

The Skane Trollspotters Club is a new project for Visit Sweden by my colleagues at GlueLondon.
Trolls live all around Skane, but specifically in 5 spots covered by the Trollspotters website.  Keep watching and you will see some trolls.  When you do take a picture using the button on the cam, then submit if for prizes.

Follow on twitter for hints for when the Trolls are next appearing.

See Trolls already spotted on Flickr

Listen on Spotify to the wonderfully named 'Music to Watch Trolls Go By'

Most excellent!

C-Mon & Kypski crowdsourced music video

This is a very good idea for a music video.  C-Mon & Kypsky made the original video, then got fans to submit stills of themselves in pre-determined poses, to add to the final video.  So far nearly 20,000 fans have sent pics.

More information here:

(Although it must be said that this is pretty similar to the Johnny Cash Project).

Crowdsourcing is so hot right now!

Via DigitalMusicNews

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

The Ultimate Chart

The Ultimate Chart is a new music chart compiled by Big Champagne, based on measuring sales, plays and mentions in a number of digital channels, including YouTube, twitter, MTV, iTunes, AOL, Amazon and Facebook.

Currently it shows Love the Way You Lie by Eminem as the top song, based on a combination of 'Sales', 'Broadcast', 'Watching & Listening', and 'Fans, Friends & Followers', and Eminem as the top artist, based on the same criteria (but different scores in each case - see the screen grabs below).

It's one of those things that easy to argue with, but it also serves as an analogy for digital campaign measurement - these days there are far more things that can be measured, so campaign assessment is much harder than it used to be, although probably far more realistic.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Limbo shows the potential of indie gaming

Limbo is a new, independently produced game for the XBox, sold in the XBox Marketplace.

It came out last week and has had very, very good reviews.  The trailer and this gameplay video show you why - it looks very dark, very unique and fans seem to love it.

What it also shows is that things like the XBox marketplace make it possible for smaller companies, like PlayDead in this case, to create games and take them to market, in the way that has always happened for films, music and books.

More about Limbo here

Friday, July 23, 2010

SeatGeek - predict the price of tickets

SeatGeek shows a really interesting use of data.

The site predicts the future price of event tickets.  So if an event is likely to sell out, the price will be higher in the future than it is now; if not it is likely that you will be able to get some good last minute deals nearer the time.

Very clever, and with the rise of daily offer sites like Groupon, plus lots of lastminute offers on other sites, you can see that this is a niche to exploit. 

I have a personal theory that there are never more than about 5 sold out theatre shows in London.  You shouldn't need to pay full price for the others, especially if you're willing to go on a Tuesday night.

Everyone loves Flipboard

Flipboard is a new app for the iPad.  It takes aggregated content and presents it in a really engaging way (see the video).

You can add all sorts of content; they have curated streams to cover areas like technology and style, blogs like Boing Boing, twitter streams from The Economist, and even The Onion. 

Better still you can sign in to your Facebook and Twitter account, and see your friends links and pictures presented visually.  (Except that they're currently snowed under by demand.  When they can cope with the demand better you'll also be able to incorporate someone's twitter list).

Everyone I've shown it to loves it.  Apparently the tech blogger Robert Scoble (who curates a couple of feeds) showed it to Ashton Kutcher, and he wanted to invest in the company.

It's already looking like the next big thing, and these are some of the future directions I see for it:

1 - Brand channels - brands acting as curators.  They could make a lot of money through this

2 - Content owners like The Guardian skipping the step of having their own iPad app, and just using the Flipboard technology

3 - Setting up your own set of feeds, like in iGoogle, to create your own personalised magazine, and then letting friends see this as well.  In fact you can already do this through twitter lists, but you could make it easier to chop and change within the app

4 - A cached version.  At present it only works if you're online.  For flights and the tube it would be great to have a cached version of the last x days from your favourite feeds.

This is going to be a game-changing piece of technology!

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Walk to me, with the new WalkIt widget

If you were coming to visit me at my office, this widget will show you the route by foot, from any location in London.

Very, very good.

The mood of the nation visualised through twitter

This is a great video from the US.  It shows the mood of the nation (green = happy, red = unhappy) over 24 hours as derived from the content of tweets.

More information here

Via the ever-reliable Metafilter

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Teefury is Two

I've been wanting to write about Teefury for a while; now that it's two I have my chance.

Teefury is a T-shirt site with a difference.  They make and sell just one T-shirt a day.  Buy it or you miss it.

Shirts cost $9, with $1 of that going to the designer.  Shipping is $2 in the US, or $9 for the UK and Europe, but even so each shirt costs less than £15.  I've bought about 8 so far.

I love the company because it's such a simple idea, and they've grown through word of mouth, Facebook and twitter alone.

This is one of my favourites:

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

She Runs by Tim Halperin

Tim Halperin is a musician who also works at a sister agency, Range. This is a video of his new song, She Runs.

It is a continuous shot video. All the sets were built by volunteers with donated materials and props. The budget was $500, and there were 21 actors, 15 stage hands, and 6 directors.

& it looks (& sounds) great. OK Go? OK Who..?

Next Generation Media Quarterly - July 2010

My new Next Generation Media Quarterly presentation is now online. Lots of cool stats and examples, many of which will be familiar to readers of this, and my stats blog, but this time with a couple of new features:

1 - a 'quiz' slide at the end of each section

2 - a special section on sport in honour of the World Cup

Have a look!

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Fabulous Old Spice personalised videos

This is a great idea. Old Spice are today's sponsored trend on Twitter. As part of it, Isaiah Mustafa, the face (& body) of Old Spice, is making personalised YouTube videos in response to questions.

People ask a question, he gives then an answer in a short video, spreading it via twitter.

Two examples -

& here's one for Perez Hilton:

One great idea, one studio set, one day of Isaiah's (& some writers') time. It looks like a lot of fun too.

My new favourite 'real time web' and 'personalisation' example!

Update - 14th July - it seems to be over now, by my reckoning about 110 videos have been posted in about 8 hours. This one is excellent, and includes props & lighting effects:

Monday, July 12, 2010

Google launch simple Android app developer

Google are trying to make their Android mobile platfrom as open as possible, and to that end they've released a simple (apparently) app developer for people to make their own.

App Inventor allows people to do just that. See the details here, or follow this tutorial to make your own WhacAMole.

Or watch this video to see how to make a cat app.

This is a pretty interesting move, considering how 'closed' the Apple system is.

For more on this, read this excellent debate on the closed nature of Apple's system in comparison. Includes such lines as:

"Would it be a good car if the hood were welded shut?

A lot of people would like it if there was no need to open a car hood or even have one."

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Volkswagen don't make shopping carts, but if they did...

This 'Fast Lane' campaign is an extension on last year's Volkswagen Fun Theory idea (Piano Stairs etc), but this time it's all about speed.

It's pretty good, and puts VW in a 'Carlsberg' position - instead of 'Carlsberg don't do X, but it they did...' you get 'Here's X, and Volkswagen have just added a fun twist to it...'

Other films - Lift, and Slide

Friday, July 09, 2010

Cameron & Zuckerberg YouTube webchat

On the official 10 Downing Street YouTube Channel

They discussed the initiative for the UK government to save money by letting voters discuss issues on Facebook rather than on a site made by the government.

More info at the BBC News site

Thursday, July 08, 2010

Levi's Urban Regeneration

This is a really interesting project. Levi's are investing in Braddock, PA, to try to help regenerate the town.

A set of films, in partnership with IFC and Sundance, explain the project.

"When the steel mills closed in Braddock, PA, they left behind a dwindling population living in near apocalyptic circumstances. Now, a new generation of urban pioneers has come with a mission- to create a new frontier from the ashes of the once vibrant town."

Wednesday, July 07, 2010

Follow the HTC Columbia Tour de France team on Google Maps

This is an excellent use of Google Maps for the Tour de France.

Each of the members of the HTC Columbia team (including British cyclist Mark Cavedish) has been GPS-ed up, and their movements are being tracked on Google Maps. Presumably the connection is that HTC make the Google Android phones.

You can see the whole teams, or individual cyclists.

You can also follow the team on twitter

Excellent stuff!

Twitter Earlybird - sponsored offers

New today is twitter Earlybird - an account that will re-tweet offers from 'select advertisers' (dread phrase!) that they have already posted.

It was only announced 13 hours ago; already the account has 10,000 followers.

I'd love to know the business model behind this - I'd guess that they will charge a flat fee for re-tweeting in the first place, then some sort per click fee for each click that the link gets, and a per follower fee for each follower the client gets as a result of the re-tweet.

More info (not on the business model) here on the official twitter support page.

Very smart.

Also - click here for my post from January 2009 on how to monetise twitter

Monday, July 05, 2010

OK Go memory sticks

How cute are these OK Go memory sticks?

OK Go have created a memory stick for each of the dates on their recent US tour.


"OK Go - USB Flash Drive Live Concert Rochester 4/24

This USB Flash Drive comes loaded with the live concert recording of the bands performance at The University of Rochester in Rochester, NY.

It also comes loaded with the bands latest album "Of The Blue Colour Of The Sky" as well as the videos for WTF and both versions of This Too Shall Pass."

They sold each stick straight after the gig, and also online. Each sells for $20.

They have also now produces an end of tour retrospective USB -

"The complete contents of the drive are as follows:

Our May 7th Electric Set from the beautiful sounding House of Blues in Boston, MA

Our May 24th Acoustic Set from Ex’pression College in Emeryville, CA

Our album, Of the Blue Colour of the Sky

The first three videos from our latest album

An exclusive tour photo gallery with shots of the boys backstage, on the bus, and everywhere in between…

An exclusive thank-you video from the band"

Each sells for $25 - but it's sold out already.

The success of twitter spam

Spam has been a problem on twitter ever since it started to get popular. Spammers reason that if you provide an enticing tweet with a link then lots of people are likely to click on it, and once you're on their site you can sell them PPC (porn, pills, casinos) or put spyware on your computer in the way that email spammers do.

Spammers typically use words that are currently in the trending topics - lots of people click on these to see why the topics are trending.

This is a good example from the weekend:

A company has set up multiple accounts, like Chrystal56467, & Sheila76259, all posting the same link. No, I haven't clicked on it.

It's through, so anyone can see the traffic stats -

This link has had nearly 60,000 clicks since June 29th.

Twitter or should do something to stop this!

Saturday, July 03, 2010

The greatest ever unsolicited product endorsement?

I love this letter from today's FT - written by Jordan Sekulow, Attorney and Director of International Operations, American Center for Law & Justice, Washington, DC, US (you get a better class of letter writer at the FT)

"Sir, After reading Jonathan Margolis’s review of the new Olympus Stylus Tough camera in How to Spend It (Travel Unravelled, May 15), I immediately went online and ordered it for my recent trip to South Africa and Zimbabwe.

In South Africa, the camera performed excellently in the rapidly changing conditions of World Cup venues from temperate Rustenburg to rainy Cape Town. The versatility of the camera is impressive.

After being tossed around in luggage and drenched during a World Cup match, the camera performed excellently in formal meetings with Zimbabwe’s government leaders in Harare. Whether I was taking photos at a game or tossing the camera to a colleague to snap a quick photo with prime minister Morgan Tsvangirai, the camera’s performance was superb.

You need not be a professional photographer to use the camera and the settings are easy to operate. Yet, after seeing the 14-megapixel images the camera produces, people may not believe an amateur took them with a point and shoot.

This camera is a must-have for business travellers who find themselves in photo-necessary situations inside and outside of boardrooms. I’ve already got my camera charged and ready for an upcoming trip to Bermuda."

If I were in the market for a new camera (which I'm not), I know which one I'd buy. The people at Olympus must feel very happy!

How to piss off your fans

Last week I wrote about Arcade Fire's album promotion - pre-order the album, and get advanced access to buy tickets for a secret gig.

I thought that it was a great idea - in fact it was a terrible idea, because not all of the people who pre-ordered got this advanced access; it was done on a lottery basis.

Hence this post on the British Sea Power forum:

"[...] For anyone who pre-ordered the album, they would be entered into a draw and certain purchasers would receive a link with a passcode enabling them to enter the pre-sale for tickets for the gig (why they couldn't just let everyone who pre-ordered the album have the link and passcode I can't quite understand...)

So I pre-ordered the album and a few days ago I was informed that I had been 'unlucky' in the draw and would not receive the pre-sale link for tickets.

However, they would send me another email with the link for the general sale at 9am on July 2. It wasn't indicated whether I would have any advantage because I had pre-ordered the album.
I didn't receive this email - but a friend (who hadn't purchased the album) somehow had, and forwarded me the link for tickets.

When I went on the ticket site at just before 9am today, the ticket purchasing page was still black. At 9am precisely, I managed to get through OK and clicked to buy but was asked for a passcode. It wouldn't let me purchase tickets without one. Was this passcode included in the email I didn't receive? Who knows. But when I went back 5 mins later the passcode box had disappeared! By then of course it had sold out.

What an utter shambles. I feel distinctly conned."

(& 8 posts follow this one).

What a shambles. What a disaster.

The gig is on at the Hackney Empire, which holds over 1,300, so if more than 650 pre-ordered the album then yes, there would be a problem. However it's a nice problem to have, so try to re-schedule the gig (which remember people are paying for) in a bigger venue rather than to antagonise the fans like this. Remember too, that they were putting other tickets on general sale, so there is really no excuse for it.

Friday, July 02, 2010

Embeddable album by Francis And The Lights

This is pretty good!

Click on any track to play it -

(Click on the link on the 'Embed This' link on the bottom right hand side to get the embed code for yourself)

More info at DigitalMusicNews:

"The fresh concept, billed as the "world's first HTML5 embeddable album," was actually designed by Muxtape founder Justin Ouellette (nice comeback). The Flash-free concoction bundles an album stream, videos, and iTunes purchase links into one next-gen release. The concept was built with iOS4 in mind, and therefore also plays nice with the iPad and iPhone. "

Vodafone content widget

This is a content widget produced by the London company Open for Vodafone, and placed on the McLaren F1 site and other places.

It allows Vodafone to stream it's F1 content including videos into different sites, and can be customised to show the content that you want.

It's also shareable, through Gigya, and as it's a standard ad size it's one of the new ad / content units that Unanimis is selling.

8-bit Twilight Eclipse choose your own adventure game

This is excellent - an 8-bit version of the Twilight Eclipse story, playable using YouTube annotations.

Start here:

Totally unofficial as far as I know, but at 800,000 views in 3 days it's the sort of thing that should have been officially commissioned.

Credits -

Created by The Station

Written, Directed and Executive Produced by Benny & Rafi Fine

Animation and Music by Doctor Octoroc

Additional Writing by Phil Haney
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