Did you register?

Voting season is upon us. So first, did you register to vote yet?

It’s brought up in most conversations I’ve had recently, even at work. All over everywhere and with customers wanting brands to align with their beliefs or have more of a community mindset there has been some brands taking a stand and asking, imploring you to take a stand as well.

What these emails have: (And what I consider Do’s)

1.) A message that connects the brand to voting

  • As most of the emails I saw were mostly ecommerce and fashion brands, you have to remind your customer why this message is coming from you. (Jenna you said it best today) Everyone should want to be Nike as they really did it. (Pun Intended) “No more sitting on the sidelines. The 2020 election season is here, and we are playing for the future. It’s up to each and every one of us. Register to vote today.”

2.) Call to action to register

  • This is obvious but needed, it can’t be just a reminder to vote. Pairing the message with a next step, providing a pathway for the end user to uphold your rationale for interjecting in the conversation. Most emails have this, the question is where to place it if you have an offer included. Clare and Baggu Both had it after their offer but Nike because there was no offer had it in their email.

3.) A partnership with – “When We All Vote”

  • Adding credibility with an organization that is specialized in that.

4.) Merchandise that is linked to voting. 

  • Could be questionable. But I think most people want to commemorate the fact that they voted and also urge others to do so. Especially when paired with a give-back of some sort I think this authenticates the offer and the message. See Baggu, a handbag and accessory company gives 100% back to the sales from the collaboration of a SF Based artist to the Black Voters Matter Fund. And Clare giving a 10% from their When We All Vote collaboration back to the organization.

What some of these emails have that are questionable:

1.) A hashtag that connects the brand and voting. 

  • As I know most brands want to continue the conversation, and gauge impact on socials so a hashtag is a good way to see that. Voting on the other hand is both personal, communal and a heavier topic that when paired with a hashtag of a brand might cheapen the message to people that aren’t apart of the core ride or die audience for your brand. NYX Cosmetics has the #NYXCosmeticsVote.

2.) Pairing unrelated products with no give back.

  • Additionally, adding products that are unrelated with no giveback, or promoting “Friends&Family” sales that aren’t because of voting cheapens your message because these are two entirely separate actions. It comes of as disingenuous because of the incongruent of the message.

Why it’s hot:

A moment to think about in communications, it doesn’t come often but could potentially have an impact on your audience when you do it right.

Source: ReallyGoodEmails.com

Rent your wardrobe through Wardrobe

Clothing has seen some grand shifts over time. First we had retail that churned new styles every season to churn more every season then mid season. Then fast fashion brands come onto the scene to accommodate the ever wanting consumers eye to flip social media looks. Then we realized how completely unsustainable that was.

So then renting wardrobe became a thing with Rent the Runway and Haute Look. And thrifting is a blast from the past now current future trendy thing to do as we up-cycle our way to a better environment. (Which is secretly not that much better but it is better than buying from Zara). Sustainability is a hot topic, from all the emissions we have spewed out to get it. And from fashion it requires answers like Rent the Runway, Le Tote, Vince Unfold and many others, including now, Wardrobe.

Wardrobe is a, launched last year in NYC growing national, peer to peer clothing rental service.

Wardrobe has users take their “extra high quality” clothes from their own closets, and rent them out to other people. Once someone has rented an item from your closet, it goes to a dry cleaning facility, where it’s cleaned and then sent to the renter. After the item is worn, it’s returned to local dry cleaners to then clean and house there.

This is different from other renting brands as it’s entirely community based and relies on local dry cleaners to help ensure part of a consumer worry which is cleanliness and hygiene. Wardrobe doesn’t have to house any inventory, or create and maintain the worlds largest dry cleaning facility, (Rent the Runway). As the Dry cleaners are the ones holding on to, and shipping out each clothing piece.

Although not revolutionary to the game as Tulerie offers the same peer to peer clothing rental service. They do require an interview before you can fill your closet with other peoples clothes. No word on dry cleaning and cleanliness.

What makes Wardrobe different is that they don’t leave it to the users to send out items and maintain it’s hygiene. Reliability from someone looking to rent out their clothes as a side gig becomes difficult to maintain and then whether or not the clothing item was taken to a dry cleaner was harder to pin down. Wardrobe took this into their own hands, and brought this tricky part in house. And owners of the clothes maintain their ownership, and possibly end up selling it on another platform. Which Wardrobe hopes to take in house in the future.

Why it’s hot:

With Covid, consumer mindset has shifted to be geared towards community, locality, and transacting for purpose.

Wardrobe is apart of that larger conversation of sustainability and living in excess, but then relies on local businesses to upkeep. It seems like a win, win, win, win. You aren’t just apart of a community, you’re apart of an ecosystem of reuse, that aids in a locally driven business, serves your want, and by serving your want you are apart of solving a problem.

Source: Fast Company

Experts in sitting meets expertise in gaming.

Herman Miller collaborated with Logitech to create the high end gaming chair, made to make you play better.

Herman Miller, long time furniture maker and creator of the famed, Aeron Chair, Eames Lounge Chair and Ottoman brings sitting to the next level with the G Embody Gaming Chair. Insert ooos and aahhhs here.

This super sleek chair comes at NBD 1500 dollar price tag.

Does it make sense for them?

Yes, they catered to the rebels of silicon valley with their Aeron Chair that “..was a throne perfectly tailored to Silicone Valley’s Vanities“. A rebellious lean to the chair that would allow for perfect power yielding in meetings and frustration of the dot com boom.

More than that, they are experts in sitting. For E Sports, that is basically what you are doing, physically at least.

Targeting the competition. 

What you get is a whole different experience than what gamers are usually sitting in, which are race car chairs. That add, what Fast Company calls, “tacky” I would say, quirky.

Because race car chairs were designed for racing cars, they hug you while you are in motion. As Herman Miller figured out, gamers aren’t moving, and the way they sit and think about their set up is very different.

Its a sport, and Herman is treating it like that.

Gamers think about their mice, keyboard and monitor as performance gear, Miller extends that to the chair as well.

Their sitting stance –

  • Gamers lean forward almost in an attack stance of their computer.
  • Leading forward means they loose the support of the chairs back.
  • At times they sit on their feet to get leverage.
  • Sweating, under lights or just because they’re sitting for 10-12 hours, adrenaline.

G Embody answer to the sitting stance –

  • Lean in non resistance. For quick maneuvering and not worrying about fighting with the char
  • Copper infused cooling foam
  • “Pixelated support” 100 mattress like coils to the seat bottom. (For distribution of weight across the seat. Miller also says it encourages blood-flow.
    • Pixels near sit bones are harder, for support, while towards your legs are softer not to compress arteries.

Why it’s hot:

Collaboration to target a new customer. New entrant into a new category.

It also makes me wonder how far can this go. Gloves for non resistant mouse clicking?

A new type mouse and glove set that will respond quicker than a click.

What is in a name?

The first step to know anything, is know the name of it.

What is in a name? Why does Destiny’s Child command you to say it?

Names are an indicator of value.

When someone knows your name, you probably know them. If you go to a store enough and they know your name, and others can imply you’re probably there all the time, this translates into better interactions because you are then valued.

Pronunciations are an indicator of knowledge.

There are approximately 1001 ways to butcher a name, and most of us have heard ours sliced and diced in a few ways. If not your first name, then probably your last. I know my own knife is pretty sharp at times. Albeit, a forgivable mistake, but when someone gets it right, doesn’t it feel like they get you a little bit better? You’re astounded, taken back a little, you probably think, How did they know that? 

The difference between knowing a fashion brand like Vetments by name and knowing it’s pronounced – (Vet-Mo). Knowing Louis Vuitton and knowing it’s pronounced (Loo-wie V-wo-ee-to). You become closer to the brand.

Ignorance is not bliss.

On the other hand when someone does get it wrong, depending on the person, it can spark quite negative emotions and can be quite triggering for some. Henrich Heins – a German poet in his 1839 autobiography goes in depth about his name and all of the emotions he felt at one point or another. He says, “…there is something unpleasant in having one ‘ s name mispronounced . Some people are made very angry by it.” (Him being one of them but don’t worry in his older age he came to terms with it.)

Where would this value matter most?

Places like job interviews where you need to show your skills or that you’d be a fit employer or employee. You are showing off you value the person by knowing their name, knowledgeable by pronouncing the name correctly and bonus points of memorable if they have a difficult name. If someone knows how to say your name, you can skip the apologies, awkward acceptances, or glazing over the you-already-told-them-how-to-say-your-name-but-they-still-get-it-wrong-after-anger and get to showcasing all your skills.

LinkedIn Pronunciations

LinkedIn has had for a long time the option to phonetically enter your name in so people would know how to say it. They will now be rolling out a new feature where you can upload a 10 second audio clip of you saying your name.

There are a plethora of ways that using someones name can enhance conversation. It’s direct and it’s personal, it’s not Hey! it’s Hey Chantelle! You are engaging them to speak, you are showing them you value them, and know them. And you are nominating them to engage with you, in a personal and direct way, vs the Hey which is impersonal. (Social Science & Conversation Analysis by Harvey Sacks) We see this in email marketing as well, seeing an email addressed to you is more attractive than one that doesn’t include it.

Source: The Verge

Why it’s hot:

A place for personalization that enable better and more valuable social interactions.

What if

When you placed an order to a store, and you actually got in the store they knew how to pronounce your name when you got there.

What if this was a security measure? To access an account you have to pronounce the name.

What if you pronounced your name when you call a customer service number, and they answered with the correct pronunciation of your name?

A Revamped Online Shopping Experience- Yeezy Supply

Returns are painful. 

I’ve recently been thinking about returns and the increase of shopping online due to retail locations not being readily available. Returns are pretty painful in store but online, they are even more so. Not only because they are not immediate but you have more to keep up with. No surprise but people return more when shopping online than in-store.

Because online experiences are lacking. 

Long have we searched for a ways to combat returns from online sales. (A link to Ben’s previous return post here.) There is video content of the model in the clothing items, reviews from fellow shoppers, Instagram influencers, and content like YouTube Try-On Hauls.

These additives have not abolished the need to get just a little bit closer to seeing, feeling and trying the clothes on in person, albeit retailers/brands have inched closer with those additions. Consumers long for an in-store experience with and online stock room.

We turn to enhance the online experience. 

Carlings “Neo-Ex” digital clothing collection – Clothes that are for the sole purpose of buying and photo shopping on your body in photos. This focuses on the need to buy just for a photo, to break away from the norm.

Snapchat AR – Ability to use the filters and to impose products on your body before you buy. (A post about Adidas/Snapchat collab by Lisa here.) This focuses on the try-before-you-buy and promotional aspect of the internet.

Everywhere but their own sites.

Every online buying experience is the same, looking at clothes on a mostly static model, and scrolling through pages of poses. Enter Yeezy Supply website. A different way to shop, a video-game-esque way to buy your ‘elevated basics’.

Choose a model. These aren’t just your regular models. They have a story, and have done something to better their community. They are nurses, firefighters, and public school teachers. Along with different body shapes that you can then choose.

This unto its own I think speaks to the introspection that I’ve been seeing more and more. These people aren’t a deemed extravagant ideal, they are beautiful for substantive and meaningful reasons. Essential heroes that we can respect because of their story and we can connect to physically. In this video game we are them, we aren’t a cartoon or a model.

Dress yourself, I mean the model. The clothes scroll through your 3D model and you choose what you want to see them in. After a choice is made, your model vanishes out of frame in a transport-like fashion, then walks back into frame in the choice you have made.

Ability to mix and match clothes that you would wear or pair on your own. There is control here, no stylist needed to bring about the ideal pairing. You are your own stylist, as you are one in your own room.

Information can be gathered on the product by hovering and choosing the ‘i’ icon.

This answers a few concerns and closes the gap on seeing a more realistic view of product but also simultaneously creating a memorable online experience with a story that melds into your own.

Is this realistic for everyone?

This is very expensive to do. The old layout works because its available and usable for everyone in almost every browser. The ability to handle traffic and show the product is easier on this type of model.  What is still unclear is how the Yeezy Supply site will handle users scrolling through and what check out will look like, and how fast users will be able to adapt to this different layout.

Why it’s hot:

Bringing human to the shopping experience.

Connecting through a story, with a body that may not be a size 00.

Better visualization of product. A ‘3D’ realistic view of clothes on a body similar to yours.

And because it is a ‘3D’ view, it changes an experience that may last but also aids in a business problem, like returns. You’re able to visualize and see a article of clothing.

Source: FastCompany

 

 

 

What to do when you can’t protest.

As many join the front lines in protest, ongoing conversations on inequalities are also being thrust into the forefront of our minds. With many looking for ways to support when they cannot protest this is a perfect combination to #BuyBlack.

Data journalist, writer, producer, and entrepreneur @MonaChalabi created this infographic to highlight the disparity among African American, Latino and Caucasian business owners.

Chalabi says in her post, “BUY BLACK. Your protests and donations are crucial right now but so is long-term economic change…” and cites that 21% of black owned business don’t feel they will survive the pandemic while only 5% of white owned businesses feel the same.

With a disparity this high, it’s hard not to notice. Petitions like the 15% Pledge attempt to get the notice of larger retailers and give 15% of their shelf space to those businesses.

Socials are filled with requests to list your favorite black owned brands as they seem to be harder to find.

Why it’s Hot:

Meaningful purchases attached to a broader social conversation. In a time where consumers have a longer time in contemplation stage of purchasing with the pandemic, and weighing of options maybe doing more extensive research into products and companies that they align with before they make a purchase. This is another segment that will continuously grow as society relates to these beliefs even further, bigger brands will need to compete with the authenticity and connection that is created with consumers and those companies.

Source: Fast Company

Some Places to Buy Black:

https://twitter.com/symphonicxale/status/1267870461909544965

https://www.instagram.com/expeditionsubsahara/?utm_source=ig_embed

https://www.instagram.com/hadiyawilliams/?utm_source=ig_embed

https://www.instagram.com/notworkrelated_/?utm_source=ig_embed

Airbnb’s Guided Meditation With a Sleepy Sheep

The scene is everyone is staying home, no traveling. With evidence that people are wanting to get away, but can’t. What is a company like AirBnB to do?

Create online experiences. Where you can live in a different place for a while. Launching 50 experiences that are all live and not pre-recorded.  Designed and led by hosts all over the world.

A means for their hosts to continue to earn income in this weird world we are living in now. Opening their home without keys, without a cleaning fee, for an hour.

Experiences include :

Why its Hot: This is a new way to virtually share your home, in real time. Is a space for a concrete income for hosts online where Twitch, Youtube, and Periscope live.

Shopify pairs up with Careletton University to offer a 4-year-degree with paid 4,500 hours of Shopify experience. Splitting time between 3 courses that all together are 25 hour a week, and time at work.

Students in this program aren’t guaranteed a job at Shopify and aren’t required to accept a job with them.

First graduates of this program will be during the Covid pandemic.

“According to a recent study, 74% of K-12 parents said they would prefer their child found work directly out of high school with an employer that offered a college degree while on the job. Other studies also suggest that American employers have a strong preference for graduates with hands-on experience.”

Why its hot:

School is teaching+time. We have more time, with online sources and schools shutting down and moving online, what makes their material better than what you’d find on places like Pluralsight, and codecamps like this one?  Will the pandemic further diminish the importance of traditional schooling?

Then will this trickle into a more fluid economy. Millenials already switch jobs every 2 years or so, what about switching careers every 2 years or so?

Will schools partner up with brands to create the perfect candidate for their positions?

Source

Your phone uses as much energy as a refrigerator annually.

That’s if you add up the wireless connection, data usage, and battery charging.

Which is the interesting fact I learned while looking into Back Market’s new tool CO2NSCIOUS. Backmarket is an online marketplace selling refurbished and electronic devices like smartphones and created something that would allow you to harness a few energy hacking tools.

First, there are a few types of energy that goes into anything you plug in.

Coal, Gas, Wind and Hydraulic.

A combination of them goes into charging at any given time. With CO2NSCIOUS, they are able to show you real time which ones you would be using to juice up, by analyzing global energy sets. Then they’re able to recommend times that would be most CO2 friendly.

 

Source

Why It’s Hot:

An interesting way to bring 2 ideas together. People who are buying refurbished are maybe more environmentally friendly.

I also think it might have an added benefit of being more conscious of how much you are using your phone. And inserting BackMarket into your awareness.

Shouting ‘maybe misinformation’ into a world of Corona

“Twitter broadened their definition of ‘harm’. ” when it comes to users Tweeting about the Corona virus.  Expanding to, “content that goes directly against guidance from authoritative sources of global and local public health information.”

They are cutting off these Tweets, as well as ones that may suggest a cure, origin, spread and protection.

  • “Coronavirus is not heat-resistant—walking outside is enough to disinfect you.”
  • “Use aromatherapy and essential oils to prevent COVID-19.”
  • “Drinking bleach and ingesting colloidal silver will cure COVID-19.”
  • “COVID-19 does not infect children because we haven’t seen any cases of children being sick.”
  • “Coronavirus is a fraud and not real—go out and patronize your local bar!!”
  • “The news about washing your hands is propaganda for soap companies, stop washing your hands.”
  • “Ignore news about COVID-19, it’s just an attempt to destroy capitalism by crashing the stock market.”
  • “The National Guard just announced that no more shipments of food will be arriving for 2 months—run to the grocery store ASAP and buy everything!”
  • “If you can hold your breath for 10 seconds, you do not have coronavirus.”
  • “If you have a wet cough, it’s not coronavirus—but a dry cough is.”
  • “You’ll feel like you’re drowning in snot if you have coronavirus—it’s not a normal runny nose.”
  • “People with dark skin are immune to COVID-19 due to melanin production.”
  • “Reading the Quran will make an individual immune to COVID-19.”
  • “Avoid businesses owned by Chinese people as they are more likely to have COVID-19.”

These Tweets when not substantiated are the equivalent of shouting ‘fire’ in a crowded theater. They can also be seen as completely outlandish on their own but what if one

Why it’s hot:

Censorship that might have ripple effects, currently unseen.

A whopper of a success

Breaking the mold.

This is predictable but someone had to do it. The have it your way king finally gave it your way to less preservatives but a more competitive mindset. First the Impossible burger, and now no preservatives?

The ad displays a majestic coat of mold that attaches itself to a pristine 28 day old whopper. Doesn’t that make you hungry!

There is nothing more real than food decay. I feel this fits into a larger trend that reverts back to real, not just in food. Looking at more natural bodies in Aerie ads and the non-retouched photos on Urban Decay’s Instagram page. The fact that more cosmetic companies launching and releasing lighter coverage foundations that aren’t meant to cover every flaw. This kind of harsh humor making fun of facts about yourself being socially awkward or depressed. Finding the light in things that aren’t perfect.

This seems like a perfect time to land with something like this.

Especially when McDonald was quicker on the no preservatives bandwagon since September 2018. But didn’t have quite a splash as much as this one did. Especially on the defensive when and Icelander bought and then went on to live stream a 10 year old McDonald’s burger and fries for the world to see the non-decay. 

I sent the 10 year old McDonald’s burger to a cousin and she said,

“…you made me not wanna eat McDonald’s. Like i knew it was bad but i do not like to be reminded.”

What was interesting was when i told her to eat Burger King when she needed a fast food fix she just said ‘i haven’t had BK in a hot minute’ which maybe won’t flip her to Burger King.

Some other perspectives.

 

Apps Streamed in stead of Downloaded, think of all the Storage!!

I have been having the same phone problem for about a year now. I don’t have much storage on my phone so I’ll resort to picking and choosing which app stays and which app goes. Its like a heartbreaking rose ceremony for my apps every week. So when I saw this, I was ON BOARD.

AppStreamer, which is middle ware that sits between apps and operating system, would cut storage needs down to 85% on Android phones. It predicts when to fetch data from the cloud server. AT&T Lab Research lent its data to from cellular networks to help this paper. Unsure if its for all phone types. But mostly tested or intended for gaming apps, this new software will allow smartphones to stream the applications on your phone only the time that you are using them. Much like a Netflix show or movie.

This helps apps because it doesn’t have to worry about large visuals and heavy code slowing down the gaming application running on your system or taking up a lot of space on a users phone leading to deletion (like me) or using a ton of their cellular network data. Helps 5G run better because instead of having to connect to many different applications it just connects to AppStreamer, lessening the load on 5G.

I’m saying gaming, because that’s what its intended to solve. But it can work on virtually any app.

In fact, researchers on AppStreamer use edge computing, (oooo). Which is just using the edge of servers when in-taking information and sending information, located in cellphone towers which are closer than the cloud. But less reliable! (ahhh) Bagchi’s lab is interested and working towards ways to make edge computing more reliable.  Because of the proximity, researchers think it can be more for just your silly phone, it could be used in self-driving cars communicating in milliseconds to servers that are close, which in-turn makes it more safe.

Welcome to the wonderful world of streaming, you don’t have to own it OR download it to use it, have it, or be charged for it.

Also, I can only imagine the wealth of information something like this could have or lack there of.

Researchers presented their findings on the 18th to the International Conference on Embedded Wireless Systems and Networks in Lyon, France.

UNTIL IT COMES OUT, i’ll be having a rose ceremony tomorrow night and out goes VSCO, i’m sure of it. And all the Instagram models will cry, and cry.

https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2020/02/200206184329.htm

EAT THIS!

As New Years brings New us-es and resolutions bloom into hopeful flowers that will hang strong until the salads loose their luster on January 12th which is new years resolution quitting day.

Fear not, you could be an hour saliva swab away from your dream body!  DNANudge is here to give you personalized dietary advice based on your DNA.

Their technology takes out a single letter in your 3 billion letter long DNA strand that is specifically linked to your nutrition-related health predisposition. Now if you remember there are only 4 letters to choose from (ACTG). Nonetheless, onward with the business.

With consumers at an all time high surveillance for personalization products, for you, you unique snowflake, this seems viable, especially with the popularity of companies like 23&me. You get a DNA band, a la fit bit (below) and a matching app(above).

The wristband will scan the barcode of the item you are looking to purchase and then flash red for no, and green for one of the good foods. Which is an interesting intervention when you’re next to the Cheetos, will your DNA tell you you can have them? Who do I blame then when I accidentally buy them and eat the whole bag? (Still not my fault, it was a hard day.)

The app will tell you the sensitivities it thinks you have and the things you should be eating. It also takes account how much you are moving throughout the day and that will also change the status of each item for you. Example, you’re sitting at your desk all day? That apple pie (that is usually green) just turned amber. They take the stance that this is not a diet, it’s all still up to you. And any dieter will have heard that saying before, it’s a ‘lifestyle change’.

Can this take the guess work out off food, and preventative healthcare providing that one other speed bump to the foods you shouldn’t be eating.

Shop with your DNA. Can DNANudge evolve into telling me what type of bag I should buy? What color sweater will suit me based on my skin tone.

Until then, I’ll will hopelessly be left to my own devices, whittling away my decision fatigue.

https://www.dnanudge.com/

 

College, was it really worth the amount you paid?

65% of jobs require some type of college degree. As tuition skyrockets, how much is it really worth when you can basically learn all the things you actually are interested online.

Trends like the Gig economy, smaller boot camps and more directed programs that don’t take as long are gaining momentum not to mention huge interest in educational classes from places like Lynda, Pluralsight, LinkedIn and Youtube are recognizing the need for knowledge in the market.

This is all happening while tuition’s skyrocket. So is it even worth it?

Georgetown set out to find out. They considered 4500 Schools for non-profit, profit and private schools in the country.

Georgetown Study

Best long-term plan: Four-year private, nonprofit colleges. These pricey degrees take a while to bear their fruits. For example, Babson College, a private college in Massachusetts, ranks 304th in value at 10 years, but 7th after 40 years, with a payoff of $1.98 million—edging out Harvard University at $1.96 million.

Best short-term plan: A two-year certificate or associate’s degree can have a high return on investment after 10 years, particularly in nursing. Veeb Nassau County School of Practical Nursing and Putnam Westchester BOCES-Practical Nursing Program rock 40-year payoffs of $1.4 million, which are in line with the payoffs of four-year degrees from Northwestern University or the University of Chicago. #gonursing

Chart to look it up your school

Was your college worth it?

Why it’s hot:

Because of all the questions it arises!

Is it worth it for some people to go to certain schools? Shines a bit of more light not only on the institution but a bit on the actual attendees.

average age of entry for CUNY schools is higher than private schools. Why is that?

And some of them average 33. So the idea of the typical college grad is different than the norm.

What are the stats for you school?

If you were on a Desert Island, what 5 apps would you use?

Google came out with Desert Island App. An experimental app, where you choose your top 5 essentials and see how well you were at sticking to just those. The next day, you bring it down to 4. Simple enough, there are a ton of apps like this that strip down your home screen to have less UX influence.

I can’t help but wonder what data they could possibly be getting out of this. Could this be a way to fuel the next Pixl phone, by seeing your top apps and then going into that space and creating them to be even more addictive? This could also be a way to segment a certain type of person, with their whole host of information on you (if you have gmail).

Also, PS, if you change the interface on your phone to black and white it helps phone usage too. Just not specific addictions like twitter.

Source

You can now practice firing someone in virtual reality

Meet Barry, you are about to ruin his day, over and over and over again. ‘his sole purpose in life is to listen patiently, and then protest or sob a little as you fire him from an imaginary job in virtual reality.’

Barry was created for managers to work on and practice the ‘soft skill’ of firing someone in Virtual reality. Created by Talespin, a VR workplace training company.

He will protest, put his head in his hands, sob and other actions will have him shout and yell.

Many people are using these VR tools for training.  Imagine a world with perfect interactions. You try to ask someone out on a date and you have a chatbot for that and their personality type, or you strike up conversations based on how you interact. What if it went as far as making a room laugh, because you practiced it, it can work out well.

What ways can this become an opportunity for us?

What if ADT had a VR set where you watch someone ransack your house and you can’t stop them. Or an interaction with your home and a sort of meditation where the idea of safety and comfort are a focus, you dim the lights to a blue color, and that promotes safety, or different shades of blue.

What if we created what MIT did with designers:

So maybe not 100% but what if our maps were VR? Each decision point would pop up and then you would chose which way to go. Like an adventure game.

You can now practice firing someone in virtual reality

Come Fly with Me, Lets Fly, Lets Fly to JFK

You have a flight coming up? You need to get to JFK? Forget about giving yourself time, just take Ubercopter which launched today for all Uber users. (Soft launch was in the summer for Premium members).

You can only take it to one place in Lower Manhattan near the Staten island ferry. Order a seat for $200-225. And you have to watch a safety video before takeoff. Using the helicopters operated from HeliFlite Shares a licensed company.

Also, the copter only shows up if you’re in the geofenced lower Manhattan area.

They say its price is comparative to other companies doing the same thing. But Uber does offer on ground transportation after your flight.

It’s hot not because its helicopters that don’t actually solve a problem, it only solves procrastination but so would hiring an assistant for a day at 200-225.It IS hot because this is a stepping stone for UberAir their all electric ride sharing network launching in 2023. But they have to really burn through a little more fossil fuel before they can go electric.

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-uber-copter/uber-makes-jfk-airport-helicopter-taxis-available-to-all-users-idUSKBN1WI13N?feedType=RSS&feedName=technologyNews

https://www.engadget.com/2019/10/03/uber-copter-jfk-trips-october-7/

Leggo!

During AFOL’s Lego Ideas first live stream EVER, they announced that a 123 Sesame Street Lego set is in development.

Lego Ideas is where AFOL can have their (and your) dreams come true.

Fans can submit ideas and any submission that gets back by 10,000 supporters goes to the board for review.

This is how the Women of NASA Leggos are among many successful products to have originated on Lego Ideas.

123 Sesame street was 1 of 10 fan pitches that the Leggo Ideas team announced to be in development.

Among them :

-Playable Leggo Piano

-The Office NBC Leggo Set

-Machu Piccu

being developed along side our beloved sesame street.

The 123 Sesame Street wont be for the usual preschool target will require more skills and be a bigger kid (or millennial).

10,000 Votes for Leggo On Sesame Street

There is a community that has built on Lego Ideas where you talk about your love for Legos. Along with Contests and Activities to keep you engaged.

Currently if you want to vote,

I can’t see it.

The Non-profit > Braille institute wants to reach more people. Especially when there are millions of people that are blind and a growing population that have increasing vision impairment.

Which leads to – Atkinson Hyperlegible.

This typeface at first looks like any other just like the one you’re seeing right now. But, theirs are distinctly different when you have 0 and O, or what about 1 and l.

I think this is incredibly helpful, is it something that will take? In a world where websites are geared toward making sure that its accessible? I think its a clever way to bring awareness. But will it go unseen?

This typeface hides a secret in plain sight. And that’s the point

 

OK, Focus!

  • Concentration with the world at your fingertips is hard.
    • Its harder when you have pinging of texts, emails.
  • Cambridge researchers say they have a solution!
      • A GAME that helps you stay focused!(What an oxymoron right?)

      (Also a fun fact, anytime you get sidetracked, it takes an average of 28 minutes to get back on task.)

      The game is called Decoder.

    • You detect a series of numbers (3,5,7) (2,4,6) (4,6,8).
    • These numbers are the codes that direct them to clues to solve missions.
  • This works the frontal parietal lobe (involves concentration). The idea is that the more you work this, the stronger it gets.
  • Plasticity of the brain, learning or strengthening new things.

FINDINGS

  • After users played decoder for 8 hours (within the month) they showed significantly better attention than people who didn’t play the game.
  • SOME say it is comparable to the effects of Ritalin (ADHD drug) Some researchers are skeptical

Why is this hot?

  1. This feels like a big trend. With timers on YouTube, and Apple reminding us screen time to get away from our phones. This game helps us focus.
  2. Attention is a serious thing to think about especially, that kids who are younger and younger are using tech. What is it doing to their attention spans?

Ending Q’s:

  • Is there a way for a brand to either use these techniques to harness attention, or get behind this and help push this trend of put your phone down?
  • Which brands do you think should help you put your phone down?
  • Should this be something that companies can use for their employees? 20 minute decoder break.
  • Would you use this?

Brain Training App

I can’t read you like a cake.

Amazon’s algorithm is reading a new emotion on faces: fear

Amazon’s Rekognition is a face detecting software that is supposed to know when you are feeling an emotion.

Technically, the algorithm works by learning how people’s faces usually look when they express fear. Then, when you show it a new image, it can tell you with a certain probability whether that person’s face is communicating the emotion of fear, leaving the human to then decide what to do with the information. The company’s descriptions of the product claim that “Amazon Rekognition detects emotions such as happy, sad, or surprise, and demographic information such as gender from facial images.”

Can we build something that humans don’t even know how to do.

Example, we built calculators, because we have figured out math and needed a quicker way to get passed tedious examples to tackle harder ones.

We rarely understand each other, and emotions are so variable for different people. What may seem like a flash of anger might be disgust for some or a twitch for another.

Answer: It’s not working, but Amazon is still selling it. It falsely matched 20% of California’s state legislatures photos. 20%! They’ve sold it to marketing companies, no surprise. But they are marketing to police forces, and immigration agencies. Where there could be a problem.

“In the past, civil rights groups, AI experts, and even some of Amazon’s own investors have asked the company to stop deploying its facial recognition technology given industry-wide issues with accuracy”

Ethically, how can someone buy half-baked technology? Why would you want half a baked pie?

 

 

Your Brain, and how we will tap into it.

How easy will journey/relationship maps be with this new Facebook mind reader?

Facebook is funding and assisting in a University of California San Francisco study aimed at giving people with serious brain injuries the chance to type words with only their minds. The research is showing real results and promise. Facebook hopes to use the underlying technology as a basis for a new brain-computer input mode for augmented-reality glasses that you wear all day.

If Facebook’s researchers can get their headset to accurately detect which neutrons are firing, they may be able to use algorithms based on the USCF research to map neurons to specific letters, then words the user is thinking of.

Facebook Envisions AR GLasses that read your thoughts isn’t just a dream

This is not the first time someone tries to map out a brain and how we process speech though! Here is a podcast about it here -> Freakonomics podcast on how your brain tells stories.

And here is a cool interactive 3-D Semantic Map that the Gallant institute created after creating the brain map that the podcast above details. Gallant Lab 3D Brain

Why it’s hot.

Besides being a cool look into what your brain does in your skull all the time. Ever since you were born. that you don’t have to put an ounce of energy into?

It brings the cliche, living in your own world, to reality. And because there are so many questions we can ask about the future, what that means for our brands, or about language and communication in general.

Weightless living, only connecting.

Questions: How much more personal do our messaging have to be to match this sort of personal 24/7 virtual reality? In how many ways do/can we understand language and meaning? What comes first the language or the meaning?- If you think its meaning, then what happens when you hear a word you don’t know? -If you think its language, what did you naturally feel for a caretaker before you knew the word for it? What would life be like if we could communicate via telepathy -can we communicate solely via meaning? If we could communicate only via meaning, would there ever be arguments? Will there be a group telepathy meeting?

And many more.