I like: Sony PCM-D1 digital recorder

The problem with Sony is that the equipment worthwhile happening is aimed at professional audiences and quite hard to get hold of. Their consumer-orientated products generally feel cheap: whilst the electronics and components are top notch, case materials and mechanical engineering usually feel shoddy in comparison to the likes of Denon, Pioneer or TEAC.

Sony PCM-D1

The Sony PCM-D1 digital recorder shows however that Sony has the expertise and the capability to make something very special. You can read about the technical specifications on the Sony website: needless to say the device is very impressive and podcasters would sell their first-born to get their hands on it.

The recorder body is made of pressed titanium, it has two sensitive electret condenser microphones that sit safely inside an elegant metal frame that has the beauty of an air-cooled twin cylinder motorcycle engine. One of the easiest to use button layouts on a professional recording machine that I have seen since the Sony Pro-Walkman WM-D6C which used to be the weapon of choice with concert bootleggers and radio news interviews.

The analogue VDU meters add legibility, character and a touch of class to the design. It would have been just as easy for the engineers to have put in a digital display instead, but they chose not to.

Links of the day

Oh Yeah? Prove It. | Altitude Branding | Brand Elevation through Social Media

MacHeist » Bundle

Is Microsoft Set to Abandon its Top-Down Zune Approach?

Welcome To Your Social Economy | Digital China Guide

Macne Nana – for a anime version of the girly T-Pain sound

Otto Wooden Fan : Swizz Style – Designer Products for your Home – really nice design. If Charles Eames had designed a fan, this would be it

Communities Dominate Brands: Average Blyk campaign 100K messages, average segment only 8K youth – digging into Blyk stats

Herald Tribune launches global online edition – Brand Republic News – Brand Republic

Texting Is Preferred Communication Method for College Students

Add Your Twitter Blog to Technorati Directory

Google China Music Search, Now Available Everywhere – it seems like the music industry in China is getting some smarts (at least compared to their cousins in the West)

Hunch: Flickr Founder to Turn Indecision into Profits

Nobody does potholes like KFC – pure ambient advertising genius until there’s a class action suit from some hick who was distracted by Colonel Sanders message on the road and rear-ends his neighbour’s pick-up truck

Wolff Olins : Research

fifty six minus one dot com :: » kaixin001 + magnum :: – casual games, gifting. The ability to build complete microsites within a popular Chinese social network. This kicks the crap out of Facebook and Bebo

Facebook at 5 – Is It Growing Up Too Fast? – NYTimes.com

The Civil Heretic – Freeman Dyson – NYTimes.com – interesting the reaction that views beyond the orthodoxy of the global warming codex gets from a liberal estanblishment who should know better

Oystercard culturejammed

Oystercard culturejammed, originally uploaded by renaissancechambara.

I noticed this sticker just off Oxford Street on the way home this evening. The Oystercard design familiar to every Londoner has been modified into a protest against surveillance by ‘The Man’.

The Oystercard system keeps a record of journeys providing an electronic track, at least in theory.

Micro-cocooning

During the 1980s with the rise of the video cassette recorder (VCR), the reduction in costs of the devices due to the VHS vs. Beta war and an uncertain economic climate consumers started to stay at home in what was later called cocooning. The internet extended this as a trend as community interaction increasingly happens online. Local is wherever you meet your friends and community are those fellow travelers that share the same interests as you be it in the real-world, particularly at work, or online through various social software services.

iPod

I have noticed on the tube how the isolation of cocooning has been extended through smartphones and personal media players like an iPod or iPhone to previously public places. My colleagues use the iconic earphones to screen themselves off from each other, even in the most open plan of office environments. During my commute to work the flow of people around me going through the turnstiles is disrupted as earphone equipped wander through as in a trance with disregard to the crowd around them. It’s not because they’ve all turned into type-A personalities, but that they are unaware of their immediate surroundings. This is about building a private world in even the smallest of personal spaces, what I think of as ‘micro-cocooning’.

Music players that can keep going for a whole working day, inner ear headphones and overear noise reduction headsets that don’t ‘fizz’, have helped facilitate this boom.

From a media and marketing point-of-view this is also a great opportunity to get content in front of these consumers at a time when they can immerse themselves in it. Applications on your phone don’t require real-time internet connectivity, if you have all the content that you want to provide pre-cached on the device making it ideal for rail commutes with dodgy phone signals.

How would you target the micro-cocooners?

Links of the day

BBC NEWS | Nintendo Wii sales hit 50 million – fastest selling games console in history

Made in design – cool contemporary design stuff

Smartphone Sales to Keep Growing

The Sorry State of the Newspaper Industry: Advertising Income Fell 16.6% in 2008 – ReadWriteWeb

Skynet search – really nice search hack by university students

Qaiku – Twitter like service

Want to Save Money? Carry Around $100 Bills – TIME

Malaysia’s big turn off | Market-interactive.com – interesting Malaysian take on the Earth Hour phenomena

Openrice – Hong Kong Restaurants Guide – Most of the reviews are in Chinese

middledigit.net | jonathan hopkins » Digital meets analogue, online meets offline – Jonathan on the web of no web, how the matrix is bleeding into real life and vice versa

Akamai Data: Internet, Broadband Still Going & Growing

Clinique, Sony Star in Web Sitcom – WSJ.com

Hunch – sign up without delay

Public timeline – MicroPlaza

Google Updates Blog Search Algorithm | WebProNews

Earnings: 3 Group Narrows Losses As Mobile Broadband Surges | mocoNews

EU Rejects ‘3 Strikes’ for File-Sharers | TorrentFreak

Prepaid subscribers continue to flourish in Europe – Rethink Wireless