Strategies for a discontinuous future.

Saturday, July 17, 2004

More open source disruption and innovation by integration : Toronto is home to world's first Linux-only store. (via slashdot)

-- Mahashunyam // 9:03 PM //


Pokia : retro phones of the future. (via Mefi).

Innovation by integration and re-contextualization

is a significant pattern that can be discerned in many products &
services. Combining or juxtaposing ideas from multiple existing sources
tends to produce something very interesting.

-- Mahashunyam // 6:46 PM //


More open source disruption : Howtoons. (via Mefi).

-- Mahashunyam // 7:50 AM //

Friday, July 16, 2004

How do people behave in P2P networks? Read all about the good samaritans, badasses, freeriders in this research into the nether worlds ....

Pirates, sharks and moral crusaders: Social control in peer�to�peer networks by J�rgen S. Svensson and Frank Bannister

For those who missed how Big Brother is watching you and *making money*, here's an old favourite :
Big Champagne is watching you

Hmmm...can we simulate behaviours in P2P networks? Would that be a logical extention of the Simulation Economy?

-- Mahashunyam // 10:38 PM //


Politics of the day

Diplomacy vs Daisy Cutters?

The Metrosexual Superpower
(Foreign Policay magazine. Free registration, or if you don't want to serve their marketers, its nemesis).

From the article: "..by cleverly deploying both its hard power and its sensitive side, the European Union (EU) has become more effective�and more attractive�than the United States on the catwalk of diplomatic clout. Meet the real New Europe: the world's first metrosexual superpower.

..Spreading peace across Eurasia serves U.S. interests, but it's best done by donning Armani pinstripes rather than U.S. Army fatigues."

-- Mahashunyam // 5:33 PM //


Simulation Economy

An analysis of property ownership in virtual worlds: Pitfalls of Virtual Property

From Terranova : Law professors are becoming interested in virtual worlds. Is this going to be the next-generation of IP Law? How will the virtual worlds benefit researchers from other fields, or vice versa? All very intriguing questions from this post by Dr Richard Bartle: The New Wave. Some attempts at finding the answers have already begun : The Laws of Virtual Worlds

-- Mahashunyam // 5:02 PM //


Design influences tech which influences design - ad infinitum.

-- matt // 6:04 AM //


I wonder how much of an influence this loss of market share is due to travelers - mostly Asian probably - who spend lots of time in both countries, bringing certain expectations to the one that is technologically (or perhaps just design-wise) behind.

-- matt // 5:44 AM //


Some links via Umair since he's on break:

The net's sleuths. Classic example of how being secretive may not always be the best option.

Fascinating explanation of the Color Marketing Group and "color trending". Reminds me of the (ex-)RIAA - power to move trends and influence markets since information flow and risk-allocation was limited (though some may argue Walmart has the upper hand).

JK Galbraith on corporate power in political and, ultimately, cultural influences.

Abercrombie tries to recool itself. I wonder what Jeffries would score on a Jung Typology test; something along the lines of an extrovert, I would guess. He has definitely has a divergent approach - when your critics get "excited", excite them even more.

-- matt // 4:12 AM //


Phew, finally...! I am the second elf filling in for Umair along with Matt. I am based in beautiful Vancouver BC on the pacific coast of Canada. My passions range from Open Source software (Go, Tux!) to skiing in supernatural BC (here, here, here....Gawd, do I miss winter or what!) to business strategy, innovation, social venturing and so on. Have fun hangin' around here, folks!

-- Mahashunyam // 4:07 AM //


IMWatching. Scary. One of those things that increases the desire for proprietary protocols and increased security. Balance is key.

-- matt // 3:57 AM //


Fedex using GM in Japan - what is this world coming to? :) Actually, this is an interesting move - GM is showing it has the guts to compete on nascent technology against global leaders on their home terf.

-- matt // 3:42 AM //

Thursday, July 15, 2004

I only just found this NYT article on technology and culture. This is what creativity is about - the bridging and incorporation of seemingly disparate ideas and philosophies. Unfortunately I'm afraid no anthropologist in their right mind would approach a Japanese technology company for fear of being ridiculed. Disruption can happen only so much on a global scale; prudent companies learn to consider - not recognize, for that's after the fact - regional differences when attempting mass-market approaches.

-- matt // 5:58 AM //


AOL, MSN, and Yahoo! realize working together might actually be better in the long run - their IM networks are being linked.

-- matt // 4:04 AM //


A black market for source code. Simply fascinating.

-- matt // 4:00 AM //


First music, now video - the comoditization of entertainment continues.

-- matt // 3:56 AM //


Media fragmentation continues. Seems to be a hot topic. Looks like we're shifting from news for the masses to news from the masses.

-- matt // 3:53 AM //


Judge denies motion to dismiss Napster case. What a waste of time and money; and where do they get these loss numbers? Meanwhile, the iTunes Music Store is off selling over 100,000,000 tunes. At an average song-length of 4 minutes, that's ... over 700 years of non-stop music! Whoa...

-- matt // 3:45 AM //


(Mittal is having trouble logging in, so I'm posting some stuff he wants to share -Matt)

The first few I wanted to post are based on the theme of "fortune at the bottom of the pyramid", based upon a brilliant eponymous article from CK Prahalad. The idea is that technology products and services tailor-made for the world's poorest market can be highly profitable. I found that to be a cool strategy and also made me wonder as to why mosre companies are not doing it. I'd like you all to think about the HP link I sent out earlier in the context of this theme.

Here's the original article from Prahalad.

Here's the upcoming book from the Wharton Press.

The original HP link.

Here's Om Malik from Gigaom lamenting that Apple is blowing is huge opportunity in India.

Social entrepreneurship at Stanford.

An interesting start-up venture spun-off from Stanford and funded by KP.

-- matt // 3:41 AM //

Wednesday, July 14, 2004

The barcode gets and update (NYT). Barcode, shmarcode - semacode is where it's at (especially given RFID's vulnerabilities).

-- matt // 6:00 AM //


Humor of the day: Scamming the scammers - someone always gets a last laugh. Interesting to note that even in this kind of "industry", followers are weeded out and only the truely ingenious, clever ones prevail - if that's the right term.

-- matt // 3:27 AM //


One step closer to ubiquitous storage for the masses: Google acquires Picasa. They know what you search for, they know who you correspond with. Now they'll know what you look like :)

-- matt // 3:01 AM //


A little more on the media fragmentation I posted on earlier. Interesting dialog happening.

-- matt // 2:41 AM //

Tuesday, July 13, 2004

Vocation Vacation. Neat!

-- matt // 8:43 AM //


Time to get rid of mp3?
Yes, there is better technology out there, but the BBC has it all wrong. Audio compression technology is nothing new, and the "mass market" that it seems to think hasn't happened came and went. People don't care anymore; there is no loyalty to any codec nor format. It's just a medium. Like currency, people will only use it if other people can utilize it too.

And AAC is not Apple's format. Amusingly even Sony earns a few cents annually thanks to MPEG's licensing.

-- matt // 8:31 AM //


If you can't stop 'em with technology, go after their guilty conscience.

-- matt // 4:30 AM //


How do parents feel about tagging their children with RFIDs? You'll know where they are...but so will somebody/entity else...

-- matt // 4:25 AM //

Monday, July 12, 2004

I think Matt Haughey hits the nail on the head with his op-ed on inevitable customer reactions to the impending Broadcast Flag. This isn't too different from the insight Umair gave on the ultimate effect of the MPAA night-goggle guerilla tactic.

If you can't (legally) modify what's new to do what old technology already can, there are some serious issues to iron out. There will always be a 3rd-party market that figures out how to circumvent the copying. It's precisely why encrypting video cables is pointless - the weakest link must exist to be useful.

-- matt // 7:50 AM //


In case you've had your head in the sand, Starbucks has been in the news quite a bit lately thanks in part to Fast Company's July feature - Thinking Outside The Cup. (For more, Ross over at Strategize shares his thoughts). Not to be left behind, Coinstar machines are being piloted in Starbucks.

I remember using a change-consolidating machine once at a Safeway on El Camino. A year's worth of coins had accumulated and I was being forced to move since I had finished my graduate program. My biggest gripe was the 10 or 15% cut it took. I would have been a much happier camper if I had received Safeway points or whatever.

I think we're seeing an interesting shift in leisure-space utilization. People will often spend hours in a coffee house, weather to read or write up business plans (it baffles me the number of times I've seen an Excel spreadsheet at a Starbucks :). In fact, a cup of coffee = a chair near by (think the cup holder industry). Initially we'd seen the integration of coffee shops beside (or even inside) bookstores, which seemed a natural progression; so I find the shift of a music store as part of a coffee shop interesting. Whichever came first is 6 of one, 1/2 dozen of the other perhaps, but I think the Coinstar pilot says more. It looks like Starbucks is asking itself, "People are taking up retail space sipping our coffee and eating our snacks but reading or writing nothing that's ours. How else could we use their time?" The trick question is, "How much of their time do we want to consume?" The beauty of Starbucks is that the attention span given directly to them is minimal - I buy a coffee and pastry, and I get to sit for as long as I like in their couches without being bothered. In fact, this seems a similar dynamic to the laundromat - start the load and the next hour is mine.

Having said that, I think there is a risk the Coinstar pilot may dilute Starbucks' mindshare as a comfortable place for a good cup of coffee. The "I've got a jar of coins - I'll go to Starbucks!" association lowers the name brand, in my opinion...

-- matt // 3:11 AM //


Art of the day - 720 hours, 9 to just flatten and export on a G4. Be sure to zoom in.

-- matt // 3:07 AM //

Sunday, July 11, 2004

Hey there Bubblegeneration readers,
I'll be one of the elves helping out with posts and commentary while Umair is out basking in vitamin D synthesis. Just a brief intro: I hail from the East Coast, love the West Coast, but am currently on an island. I have a tech background that has been fused with the audio industry. This is a space I'm sure many of us believe is pregnant with disruption. I'll be blogging from Tokyo so expect the posting-cycle to run 24/7 with the help of Mittal :)

Let's see, how about my inaugural post: here's an overview of what product-proselytizers are increasingly having to face with media fragmentation.

-- matt // 4:38 PM //




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