I hadn’t done one of these posts in a while so I decided to focus on the media sector, the consumer electronics sector and developments in search.
|Participants in the Korean wave who are currently doing good business in both Japan and the US:|
- Girls Generation
|Publishers finding that tablets aren’t a panacea for declining print sales and consumers finding that e-magazine are huge data files and aren’t that well designed||Media industry lobbyists running amok and going to war with their customers a la Digital Economy Bill|
|Samsung including vacuum tubes in their top-of-the-line home cinema set-ups. Now if they could just learn how to make hi-fi separates||Still surprised by the relative lack of support for DAB radio broadcasts amongst hardware manufacturers||Traditional Japanese consumer electronics manufacturers who have lost their mojo on high-end products and lost their market everywhere else as there is no longer a compelling reason to buy their brand.Their convergence strategies and undifferentiated SKUs have been a commercial suicide pact|
|Innovations in trying to understand consumer intent like Hunch and developments in social search like Quora||New poorer versions of Google tools; notably the new beta Analytics look-and-feel which is just plain awkward||Advanced search functions and tools. No longer with us|
- Link command
- Yahoo! Site Explorer
- + command in building search terms
Kurt Anderson wrote an essay in Vanity Fair where he argued that product design in everything from fashion to homewares has stood still over the past two decades. It was an interesting that got me thinking about hypothetical reasons why his theory maybe true.
There were a number of possible factors that I came up with:
Design – design education has gone global – design professionals now know more about design than they ever have done before. You now have designers who can access the same influences from all over the world from the same place. The design computerised tools haven’t changed radically from the early 1990s but they have become more pervasive. Design and culture are inextricably linked and culture as we previously knew it has been disrupted.
Culture – The structure of culture has changed. Where the mass-media, publishers like Taschen and (often hard-to-get) style magazines or fanzines were the arbitors of the latest tribe, high and low culture trends, now Google is likely to turn up images and blogs about what whatever you want. This has meant that fashion is no longer linear in its timeline, but massively parallel: from cosplay and rockabilly to ‘rugged’ style – fashion sensibilities resonates around the world in a self-sustaining loop with more power than previously.
The pressures on culture have also changed; in the west there is no longer a sense that progress is inevitable. Even up to the 1990s with the Hubble space telescope and the Channel tunnel; big exciting things were being done and aspects of technology were interesting or exciting. You still have this; only its in China, Brazil and India. Environmental concerns and a wider anti-science movement that has gained momentum have squeezed the joy out of progress.
Societal change – seems on some levels to be going at an ever faster pace, which means that culture values things like authenticity, by looking to simpler times in the near past. Authenticity comes from:
Globalisation – Autenticity can also be seen to be a backlash against the tyranny of choice that globalsiation has provided. Retailers in the west have created giant sheds to handle their massively expanded but similar product lines. This has promoted a homogeneity in many product lines. It has also promoted a throwaway culture: H&M clothing for instance – which is at odds with environmental concerns, particularly when you think about what goes into growing cotton. On the plus side it has also created opportunities for mass bespoke manufacture – supporting various subcultures through ecommerce and better logistics.
Marketing – finally marketing has changed from being intuitative and demand-driven to being much more data and insights driven in nature and this has affected the product development process with every aspect of it undergoing scrutiny. The key challenge is that often people don’t really know that they want, but the space for vision is now lacking.
One of the digital tools that I have encouraged use of at work is CoverItLive. It consists of two elements: a dashboard and an embeddable module which is compatible with many media company content management systems to share content and engage in conversations. So live blogging of an event (we’ve used it for the UK budget announcement and social media conferences we’ve attended) or live interaction like a question-and-answer session. It looks like they have been hacked looking at this announcement this morning:
CoveritLive recently discovered that certain proprietary data files were accessed without authorization starting on or about January 7, 2012. We have not yet determined if, or to what extent, CoveritLive account information (i.e., user names, email addresses and/or passwords) was accessed. We do know, however, that no financial account information has been compromised.
Our investigation is ongoing, and, as a precautionary measure, we will implement required password resets for all active CoveritLive accounts. We plan for this process to begin Saturday January 14, 2012 at 12 AM EDT (5 AM GMT). The next time you log in after the process has begun, you will be asked to change your password before you will be allowed into your account. NOTE: we do not anticipate that you will experience a disruption in your event if you are using CoveritLive while the change is invoked.
Your password and all account passwords are encrypted as a standard CoveritLive information security practice, and we have no evidence that an unauthorized individual has actually retrieved, or is using such data. However, out of an abundance of caution we recommend that if you registered for CoveritLive using an email address and password combination that you use for other online accounts, you should immediately create unique passwords or new login credentials for those other sites and accounts.
We take this matter very seriously and will continue to work to ensure that all appropriate measures are taken to protect your personal information from unauthorized access. We also would like to take this moment to remind you of a couple of tips that should always be followed:
Do not open emails from senders you do not know. Be especially cautious of “phishing” emails, where the sender tries to trick the recipient into disclosing confidential or personal information.
Do not share personal or sensitive information via email. Legitimate companies will not attempt to collect personal information outside of a secure website.
We regret any inconvenience that this password change process may cause you. Please do not hesitate to contact us at email@example.com if you have any questions.