Tuesday, 15 November 2011

Earth | Time Lapse View from Space, Fly Over | NASA, ISS

This is absolutely amazing, especially if you are like me a little bit of space exploration nut or fan of Carl Sagan, both as a philosopher and cosmologist as it really reiterates his notion of the "pale blue dot". It makes you realise just how beautiful our world is and how lucky we are to be living on it.

Tuesday, 21 September 2010

Dark Patterns tries to force ethical U.I. Design practices

I'm really interested in the psychology of design and optimising design to manipulate and audiences response. I have also been painfully aware for a long time that certain processes are deliberately difficult to execute in order to dissuade people from going through with them. Harry Brignull recently put together this presentation outlining some of the methods used by less scrupulous sites and provides a place to name and shame services that employ such methods in order to force companies to employ more ethical principals of design.

Wednesday, 15 September 2010

Vena Cava

Loving the retro feel of this promo video for Vena Cava

Thursday, 26 August 2010

The Blair Witch Infection

This year Forbes billed The Blair Witch Project as one of the best ever social media campaigns. It was designed and succeeded to engage and encourage discourse within the target audience allowing it to spread virally thus causing the populartiy of the film(the product) and the campaign particularly the website by adding value to that product since it bolstered the story line rather than just advertising it.

The marketing materials endeavoured to create empathy for the characters by making it appear as if it was for actually missing persons with a bizarre supernatural twist. To achieve this a second "pseudo-documentary" created for the Sci-Fi Channel which centred on interviews with the parents of the "missing" film makers and residents of the town “formerly known as Blair”, a book based on the investigation, a comic book, and a soundtrack that is marketed as the mix tape found in Joshua Leonard's(one of the Students) car. Flyers were distributed in Cannes that appeared to be for missing persons and most importantly a website, which was an extension of the mythology and “search” for the missing students was created. The site featured an interactive timeline, beginning in 1785, of the events in the History of the Blair Witch which offers further explanation of the myth, complete with historical artifacts such as sepia-toned photographs and documents such as the book The Blair Witch Curse. The aftermath section features the story after the film ends by detailing the search for the missing filmmakers, displaying evidence in the case, interviews with the sherrif and search party participants, and news reports of the case. The Legacy section includes video and audio clips of the found footage as well as excerpts from the main character Heather's diary. At the time Nielson NetRatings listed the official site as the 45th most visited location on the Web for the week ending August 1 1999, with a reported 10.4 million page views and an astounding average visit of 16 minutes and 8 seconds. That ranking is a jump from its placing of 86th during the week ending July 18, when the film was in limited release.

Steve Wax, MikeMonello and Greg Hale who created the “the Blair Witch project” went on to found Campfire a marketing agency who's strategy is to create a story that develops over time entangling their target audience in a plethora of media. They create an addictive mystery that peaks curiosity and entices people to want to find out more which thanks to the help of search engines such as google has become much easier. Their Audi campaign called "The Art of The Heist," utilised the web through both traditional and social sites like message boards and blogs, mobile technology and experiential exploits. The results were better than Audi could ever have hoped for, with 2 million hits on their web site, 4000 test drives and 75% more dealership leads.

Wednesday, 17 March 2010

Going With The Crowd

I've come to realize that the future is going to be user generated. We will see the rise of all things user generated from Magazines to News Agencies, and as connectivity becomes more and more mobile so updates and amendments will be come more frequent. The news will be almost impossible to censor but it will also be highly influence-able by less than scrupulous individuals??? Perhaps; but perhaps it will self censor and self correct itself. My theory is this if you have a piece of software that monitors reports and then works out the "true" story by cross referencing the facts that have been submitted. And since such a site would be community based it would be policed by the community this could be achieved by making the stories submitted public as well as the identity of those who submitted them. Another example of this would be crowd sourcing brand ambassadors like for example the recent benetton campaign its:my:time is a good example of this I entered to see how it worked and I'm not sure if it does just yet, but from the looks of it there were a lot of entrants who are pretty handy with scripting automated voting apps (don't worry I'm not dissapointed with the number of votes I recieved I wasn't expecting any to be honest) but it brings me back to my point that systems can be manipulated and skewed if measures aren't put in place to compensate.

Saturday, 6 March 2010

The State of the Internet

An amazing little info graphic video about social usage of the internet and its various providers.

JESS3 / The State of The Internet from JESS3 on Vimeo.

How information spreads "virally"

In my opinion most ad agencies really don't understand the following principle and pretty much copy what ever seems to be floating around on YouTube or facebook or (insert social networking site here); but my theory is this, that information and trends are a form of social currency that people use to bolster their position within the community, the higher up in the said community a bit of information will push you, the greater its value and the faster it spreads. It stems from our primitive hunter gatherer days when if a member of the clan had information to say for example a clump of fruit bearing vegetation his position in the community would become elevated as the information he held was important for the societies survival. I admit its a simple model and needs a bit of work but you get the idea.