dumb, crass, stupid, sexist lavazza

Interesting thoughts on complaining via buzz tracking. Russell doesn’t like the Lavazza posters with busty women on them (russell davies: dumb, crass, stupid, sexist lavazza). I think the image, as a photograph, is middle-shelf toss-fodder. Yes it’s sexist, yes it’s a bit crass. But most of all I really can’t see how this is going to appeal to drinkers of a relatively high end coffee… I’m not offended by it, I just think that the whole campaign is misguided.

I’m much more interested by the power of blogs as routes to reach marketers. Trackbacks, links, and general Google strength are all things that as bloggers we can harness for our own aims.

Given that it doesn’t take many letters to the ASA to get an ad taken off air, how many blogs would have the same effect?

A List Apart: Articles: Web 3.0

web 2.0 graphicI almost feel like I know the guy in the empty seat, or certainly someone cast from the same mold. Zeldman writes about the state of the web. A List Apart: Articles: Web 3.0.

But ours is a medium in which, more often than not, big teams have slowly and expensively labored to produce overly complex web applications whose usability was near nil on behalf of clients with at best vague goals.

True, and that’s still the case. There’s some people who’ve learned from their mistakes (and some who haven’t), some technology that’s improved (and some that hasn’t), Web 2.0 is not a magic wand. In fact (for me) it’s not really very much, apart from a handy organising thought. But the above quote could just as easily be applied to a Ruby-on-Rails project with lashings of AJAX if it’s being run the wrong way by the wrong team.
We’re on an upward tech curve, innovation is happening. VCs and money people are catching up. And for them Web 2.0 is just a lazy shortcut to describe a load of stuff that has been combined to make a few good web apps work better.

That sort of feels like where Zeldman is going too. And he ends the piece with a lovely message which I felt was written just for me:

To you who feel like failures because you spent last year honing your web skills and serving clients, or running a business, or perhaps publishing content, you are special and lovely, so hold that pretty head high, and never let them see the tears.

But just you wait till I get my AJAX, Ruby driven, social dog walking group reminder photo blog service up and running. The VCs will be whacking down my door with their greedy fists. Or something like that.

PowerPoint Kills

I’m not someone that believes PowerPoint is inherently evil, it’s not. It has some flaws (as does most software), but I reckon the thing that hurts it the most is the use of templates. The whole thing is set up with bullet points as the default setting, which means that using bullets is the lazy man’s option. Whilst they can be a good way to ‘outline’ your presentation, as a way of getting people to engage they’re rubbish.

(Just as an aside: one thing I’ve wondered over the years – do MBAs teach people that more is more, especially when considering words on a PowerPoint chart? I’ve noticed a strange correlation).

Here’s a great article about appropriateness of presentation styles, from the always insightful ‘Creating Passionate Users‘.

A list of other recent posts that put me in awe of this blog:

Happy Reading.


HassleMe – nice little online app that reminds you to do stuff. Not as fully featured as rememberthemilk.com or backpackit.com (my online reminder/to do service of choice right now).

But, I do love the fact that it offers:

If you add more than one email address (separated by commas or semicolons) we’ll pick one person at random for each hassle — good for offices!

Made by the lovely guys at mysociety.org

Digital Newspapers

Digital NewspapersHave I been living with my head in the sand? A bit, probably. But I spotted these today. Printouts of newspapers. The Times, in the morning. in New York. Looks like it’s just been squirted off a laser printer. No bulky shipping, no big printing presses.

Just your ordinary newspaper news in a page-turningly good format. But only a few hours after the presses have rolled.

Is this legit? Grey? Or do the big newspaper publishers all know about it?

I’m sure a Google search would yield some answers, but it’s more of a ‘look what I saw’ kind of post.

Slow Down Week

slow down weekSlow Down Week – damn, it’s this week! That’s the 15-21st Jan.
I’m so slow that I’ve missed the first bit of it. And this is a very busy week for me, maybe I should use this as a way of enforcing slowdown extreme.

Slow Down Week is all about exploration and adventure, experimenting with new rhythms for a more enjoyable, fulfilling, interesting and meaningful life. Now, before you get too excited, take a second . . . relax. There’s no need to start planning feverishly for your perfect week in the slow lane. Take it as it comes.

I like the idea of slowing down though. I think most of the people I know could do with a bit of ‘foot off the gas’ – and most of them could achieve it. Without screwing up their world.

Sorry for the silence…

Sorry there’s been a few weeks of blank. I was away on holiday in Goa. I left my mobile behind. I didn’t check my email for a couple of weeks, in fact I didn’t touch a computer. It was nice. The man in the photo isn’t me. I don’t know who he is. He just walks along the beach at Palolem every day. He strides with confidence and purpose.

Oh, and it’s a bit late, but: “Happy new year”.