Tuesday, August 29, 2006
MassMedia Studios Announced As One of Asia’s Hottest 100 Startups
Congratulations guys, you've worked hard and deserve it.
MassMedia Studios one of Australia’s most innovative digital marketing powerhouses now with offices in London and New York have just been announced as one of Asia’s hottest 100 startups.
Their revolutionary ASP delivered multi channel digital marketing solution http://www.tractionplatform.com/ has rapidly been adopted by advertising agencies as the solution of choice to drive innovative interactive campaigns via email, sms, web, video and voice.
About Red Herring
Red Herring is the weekly magazine technology entrepreneurs, investors and industry observers read to stay ahead of the curve and to be better informed about the global marketplace. Red Herring covers technology, innovation, financial strategies, important personalities and trends that are transforming the world of business with unique insight, opinion and forward-looking analysis. Readers turn to Red Herring for knowledge to make strategic decisions, build companies and create a competitive advantage for their businesses. To learn more about Red Herring, please visit http://www.redherring.com/.
About Red Herring 100 Asia Conference
Red Herring 100 Asia Conference is an invitation-only event for CEOs, select senior executives, and Venture Capitalists. Red Herring 100 Asia will bring together executives from mostly private companies. These executives will be joined by senior executives from public companies and Venture Capitalists.
Sunday, August 27, 2006
Congratulations to MassMedia Studios Part 1 (one of my clients)
Congratulations! After a difficult evaluation process, the Red Herring editorial team is pleased to announce the selection of the 200 finalists for Red Herring 100 Asia for 2006. We would like to congratulate the following companies for being short listed as one of the most promising companies in all of Asia.
Saturday, August 26, 2006
It's the little things :(
I can live with all of these differences.
It's the fact that the coffee sucks and that Starbucks really is the best coffee you can buy in NY (ok almost there are 3-4 other favourite places I have found) however the majority of it sucks - but that’s not the worst part.
The worst part is that out of the 20 different American brands of instant coffee we have tried there isn't one that comes close to Nescafe Espresso.
Not a problem you think, considering Nescafe is an international company should be easy to find right?
Nope apprently it's a local brand and can only be purchased in Australia (and the UK of all places) oh and there’s a guy in Texas who sells it for a 50% mark-up.
So what do we do? Well every trip back always brings at least 6-8 jars of the stuff, and every time a friend of ours comes to visit....it's on their goodie list, along with Tim Tams and Vegemite.
Though this time our next trip home isn't until Christmas and we just ran out last week, so we had to get my sister to ship some to us at $60 for the coffee and $70 for the shipping (oh ok there were some dairy milk chocolate blocks in there as well which added to the weight).
It's given me a new appreciation to all the Asians you see trying to bring cured snake blood and other weird and wonderful things through Mascot customs.
At least for us it's just an email away and we can get some posted over. For them it's not a difference of orange cheese or real cheese, it's a totally different experience.
Travel the world people, it gives you a new appreciation for home but also gives you empathy.
P.S. Now thats how expats buy coffee :) 6 x 375grams all the way from Australia, thanks sis.
Wednesday, August 23, 2006
Senator Coonan: A pipeline for "Hot Air"
Senator Coonan has made the statement "Mobiles A Pipeline for Perversion" and now demands the implementation of a R18+ set of laws to regulate the mobile industry.
Heaven help us, I thought when we got rid of Senator Richard 'Luddite' Alston things were looking up. What is it with positions like this....you must not understand technology in order to be nominated to the role otherwise go to the end of the line?
You know I laughed a few weeks ago when Cambodia decided to ban 3G because it was capable of porn, but that was because it's a technology backwater run by people who dont know any better. http://www.theregister.co.uk/cambodia_3g_ban/ (actually I have a lot of respect for Cambodians but thats a story for another time but if you have any interest you must read Pol Pot by Phillip Short it's sensational).
So would someone please go and tell the Senator that mobile content can be loaded by USB, or even shock horror browsed from a website outside of Australia's dictatorial reach, either way......Honey, we already have a law that covers it.....you know the one you pushed through last year that moved all the content offshore and had zero affect.
Now go and sit on uncle Fred Niles lap for a bedtime story.
Tuesday, August 22, 2006
How far will consumer generated media go?
Well informed and most importantly fairly frank and honest. One of the more interesting comments about 20 minutes into the session is the discussion about why is it that the majority of TV video advertisements is so mediocre.
The comment was made that why is it that people are always year after year so excited by Superbowl ads but that the rest of the year people complain about the intrusion.
When is it that the advertisements will become the "entertaining content"?
Why is it that some ads interest and entertain us and become runaway hits and others just bore the heck out of us
With the cost associated in shooting a 30 second advertisement is it time that they start audience testing? What’s your favourite ad and why is it your favourite ad? What would/could you change about a boring ad to make it more interesting?
There was an interesting discussion this week on the Yi-Tan conference call about user targeted advertisements.
I mean, I live in NY. I've always owned a car or a motorbike and whilst when I lived in Sydney (or a few at a time at one stage) here in NY I will never own a car, the cost of garaging it at $2,000 per month is one I just cant justify. Yet the majority of ads I see on tv personally are for car insurance. I feel like I owe Progressive and Geico some money based on the amount they have spent on me in the past 2 years.
I've got a concept running around the back of my head on how this could be done based on some stuff that I've looked at in the past with my dealings with Myth-TV and Akimbo but the question is - is there really enough good video advertisements to make user targeted ads more relevant.
I’m also having a hard time deciding is it the clients or the agencies that are driving this “entertainment” issue.
Monday, August 21, 2006
Knock Knock..... Who's there?
Now I love geeks, I love the neat things that they can come up with that you wouldn't have thought of, and linux geeks especially so.
But this takes the cake.
The new ibm laptops have something called "Hard Drive Active Protection System" (HDAPS) built into their hard drives.....basically in english it means, your laptop knows when it is bumped or falling so that it can prepare to 'brace' itself for the knock.
Or thats what it was designed for.
So these geeks went out and wrote some code called knockAge.pl script. This is a Perl program that allows you to create knock sequences as well as listen for specific knock sequences and run commands.
Yep, you read that right, the hard drive can measure you knocking on your laptop and know when it is you versus someone who looked over your shoulder as you typed in your password last week.
Want unlock your screen saver with a certain code.... no probs,
Want to log into your secure files ....whats the code :)
I know this is only going to appeal to a very small very unique audience but count me in for one - is it enough for me to swap to linux, no not really but it's certainly something to be envious of.
P.S. if you are still reading this far you're a geek and will love this video as well http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sbh_JGbPoJU&NR totally useless but uses HDAPS to move your active window around the display.
Thursday, August 17, 2006
AO Top 100 for 2006
I'll post some comments on a few of these companies as it comes up but great to see a few companies I'm already working with listed.
I wish when composing this list they made more of an effort to include international companies but this is a great place to do some research on whats hot and up and coming in the tech space.
However – how come Digium isn’t listed but Sugarcrm is and Zimbra is? Surely Asterisk has made a bigger impact on the IT community than either of these companies?
I think next year we should coordinate a campaign to get Asterisk on the list and make sure we get more traction for an application that definately has to be in the top 100 cool technologies for 2006.
Does anyone on this email list know Tony Perkins directly that we can leverage in advance of next years selection?
Blue Lane Technologies
Hands On Mobile
Pay By Touch
Silver Peak Systems
Good advertising made great
Apart from the fact that I hate scaffolding in NY (I just dont get how much there is and how long it's up for....therefore I think that all scaffolding advertising should be banned).
I love the fact that 3 letters turn this advertisement from good advertising to great advertising.
The NYC dramatically affects the attention factor of this ad and the clean lines make both the message and the image standout cleanly.
More advertising should be localised like this.
Monday, August 14, 2006
The Tail Has Two Heads
Preview Trailers of Fall Drama Lineup-
BURBANK, Calif., July 19 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- In a
first-of-its-kind promotion, NBC and Netflix, Inc. (Nasdaq: NFLX), the
world's largest online movie rental service, today announced they will
offer Netflix's approximately five million subscribers an advanced look at
the premiere episodes of NBC's anticipated new drama series "Studio 60 on
the Sunset Strip" and "Kidnapped." The shows will be made available in
their entirety, six weeks before their respective broadcast premieres, on a
special DVD created for Netflix that will also include preview trailers of
the network's other new fall drama series. The announcement was made by
John Miller, chief marketing officer for NBC Universal Television Group,
and Ted Sarandos, chief content officer for Netflix.
So the first I heard of this was watching TV last night and NBC was advertising one of their new series for the fall schedule "Kidnapped" (hmmm weak plot but whatever....)
What was very interesting to me however was the tie-in with Netflix.
So basically what NBC are offering is instead of waiting for the fall season you can watch each show 6 weeks before it goes to air by ordering it through Netflix.
Each week the next episode will be available for rental (I wonder how many of these they expect to rent....and what will be the falloff rate for each episode). Especially as it doesn't cost you any extra but will take up one of your 'slots'.
For those of you who dont know about Netflix, basically it is dvd rental same as you would get from your local blockbuster however they mail the dvd's to you and then you return them after viewing.
The 'neat' part about it is their pricing model, you pay an amount for each dvd you want to have in your posesion at any one particular time, not how many you watch eg. for $17.99 per month you can have 3 dvd's in your home, each time you return one, they send you the next dvd in your list. Postage is included, so it makes sense for you to swap them out on a regular basis as soon as you have watched them as you still pay the flat rate per month even if you dont return any.
I'm very interested to see how this works, what kind of numbers they get for the 6 week advance preview, especially how this may affect the fall season ratings.
Does this mean it validates Mark Cuban's business model about releasing movies at the cinema, dvd to own, and paytv simultaneously
If you are not familiar with it Mark Cuban introduced this last year with his Landmark Cinema chain, selling the dvd via retail and screening it on HDnet his paytv channel all on the same release date - this first film was Bubble by Steven Sodaberg
Also if you dont know who Mark Cuban is then check out this article
He was a dotcom eloper (eg. got out at the right time) and has bought a few things including the Dallas Mavericks and a plane or two.
My next question is....how soon before Kidnapped is on Bit torrent?
And...what the heck are they going to do with all those Kidnapped dvds once they are returned? (aol furniture anyone?)
Sunday, August 13, 2006
With the temp for the last few weeks in the 90's (32-37c for my more intelligent metric friends) it was a surprise 2 weeks ago when we saw the shops starting to put out fall/winter clothes. Jodie and I were like WTF!!!
Sure enough last Friday the weather changed, it's like clockwork. The temps are already falling into the 70's during the evening (21-26c) and whilst this means there is no better time than now to visit New York it does mean that 6 weeks from now it's going to suck again and be freezing.
I mean it makes perfect sense that retailers track this kind of thing to the week but it's bizzare how perfect they get the timing some times. One of the things that took getting used to is how you really do need 3 sets of clothes in NY. eg. I have a winter jacket that I wore out the first day it snowed last year.... way too warm, it was a good month later before it was cold enough to wear without sweating.
Of couse the irony is that I now have less closet space than I have ever had at any time of my life.....ah NY rents...such a delight.
I miss home where for 9 months of the year the weather is perfect, in NY it's perfect for 6 weeks in the spring, 6 weeks in the fall and the rest of the time is stinking hot or freezing cold.
Having said that there is a nice upside to the changing of the seasons, it's hard to explain but it's kind of invigorating. It makes you focus on projects and work. It makes you seek out to enjoy life as you notice the years ticking by.
We have even grown to like it in NY when it snows, it may be freezing cold but at least it is clean and white.... for a while till it gets grey and slushy
Thursday, August 10, 2006
Ze Frank - getting older but getting comfortable
maybe we could all use some more sense like this.
Are you a sheeple?
The appearance of fighting terrorism is more about controlling the masses then actually getting bad guys.
Think of it as a tax on the dumb ..... there does that help you sleep better at night?