Michael Malone & things this week

Reading Time: 2 minutes

Michael Malone

Michael Malone was famous to me as a writer on the San Jose Mercury News online site. Michael Malone had been a long time writer on the paper and chronicled all the happenings in Silicon Valley. Michael Malone is now the co-host of The Silicon Insider podcast. In the past he has written numerous books covering different parts of the history of Silicon Valley. So he has a unique perspective on the place and the technology sector.

Michael Malone was interviewed by NBC reporter Scott Budman on behalf of the Computer History Museum based in Silicon Valley.

Dune trailer

Denis Villenueve is the director that Hollywood seems to trust with difficult to tell films like the Blade Runner sequel. He is also the director who is likely to get closest Alejandro Jodorowsky’s attempt to film Dune in the mid-1970s. Green screen and digital cinema offer Villenueve tools that Jodorowsky could only have dreamed of four decades earlier.

Junk sleep

US speciality retailer Mattress Firm is doing a couple of new things with its adverts featuring Lev Schreiber. First of all was the concept in the creative of ‘junk sleep’ that reminded me of J Walter Thompson’s early work for Odorono, an early anti-perspirant that invented the concept of ‘body odor’ from a marketing perspective. People had always been smelly, but it was JWT that broached the subject in the adverts.

Junk sleep feels like a similar type of concept. As a strategist, I like the concept. The second aspect is the trippy nature of the ads which captures the feeling of sleep deprivation really well.

Apple watch

Apple put together a fun ad for health tracking on the Apple Watch. It gets over many of the activities that the Apple Watch can track.

It reminded me (unintentionally) of The Court of King Caractacus, made famous by Australian entertainer Rolf Harris. Harris had a five decade career in show business that ended in ignominy when he was convicted for 12 indecent assaults on against four girls.

Emirates and Qatar Airways

COVID-19 disrupted the airline industry since people weren’t flying. The asymmetry of opening up seems to be hammering the Middle East airline ‘super hub’ model according to this video by Sam Chui. Chui posits that super hubs offer the opportunity for a super spreading event and there is likely to be an uptake in customers wanting to fly direct in the immediate aftermath of COVID-19.

If this is true, then there will be a knock on effect for duty free retailing and luxury sales as well.