Wednesday, 30 January 2013

Colleague, Daughter or Lover (and other commuter games) - DAD LESSONS FOR MY KIDS

DAD LESSONS FOR MY KIDS - Colleague, Daughter or Lover (and other commuter games) -

You see an older man with a younger woman.

Let's play "Colleague, Daughter or Lover"

I call "Colleague".

These are the games in my head while commuting.

I can't turn it off.

(Brief history: It used to be called "Daughter or Lover", which had a much better ring and clearer rules. But this whole other co-worker category seemed to emerge. And, weirdly, always the older man seems to be doing all the talking, which is what makes them stand out on the train. Anyway, "Colleague, Daughter or Lover" it now is.)

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Tuesday, 29 January 2013

Makey Makey - turning anything into a keyboard

Saw this in a Maplin leaflet, and now I'm tagging it with not done yet, because I've not yet come up with the ultimate killer app for this:

MaKey MaKey - An Invention Kit for Everyone

Turn everyday objects into touchpads and combine them with the internet.

"Alligator Clip two objects to the MaKey MaKey board.
For example, you and an apple."

"When you touch the apple, you make a connection,
and MaKey MaKey sends the computer a keyboard message."

The computer just thinks MaKey MaKey is a regular keyboard (or mouse).

"Let's say you load up a piano. Then, instead of using the computer keyboard buttons to play the piano, you can hook up the MaKey MaKey to something like bananas, and the bananas become your piano keys"

"Or say you Google for an online Pacman game and draw a joystick with a pencil:"

All details here on the makey makey home page...

No idea what I'd use it for - shh... coming up with something worth the 50 quid price tag...

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Thursday, 24 January 2013

DAD LESSONS FOR MY KIDS - Lawyers, part 1

DAD LESSONS FOR MY KIDS - Lawyers, part 1 -


This is great.

From a Marks and Spencers Box of Chocolates.


It's like a general piece of wisdom for life.

This legal disclaimer looks like it's a helpful note,
but why not just put on a picture that is actual size.

Or, why not make the chocolates bigger to match the photo?

Sounds so much more legally watertight than 'chocs not this big').

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Sunday, 20 January 2013

Age ranges on toys - DAD LESSONS FOR MY KIDS

DAD LESSONS FOR MY KIDS - Age ranges on toys -

Parents and toy manufacturers play a game.

The toy industry bumps up the recommended age to avoid being sued.

And parents bump the recommended age down again,

because it makes us think our kids are clever and "advanced".

It's a bit like women's clothing lines bumping down the number of their sizes.

It's an uneasy standoff.

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Wednesday, 9 January 2013

Why don't we have Metric Boobs in the UK? - DAD LESSONS FOR MY KIDS

- Why don't we have Metric Boobs in the UK? -

(pic from Sophia Jenna's awesome blog)

I don't know why in the UK we still measure breasts in Imperial.

I think it's because centimetres gives you a bigger number.

Measuring Boobs in inches is more demure.

36D sounds more, manageable, than 91D.

(Which is what it would be in metric.)

Though, if you wanted to be modest, you should measure chests in feet.

"Three foot" sounds, you know, proper.

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Monday, 7 January 2013

French Standup - Florence Foresti - Cool Stuff on the web

Jason at work mentioned in passing that he spent the weekend watching a standup on DVD do a routine around a topic that sounded a lot like something I'd been tinkering with.

I wanted to make sure it was well clear of the kind of stuff I'm working out, so asked who she was, and it turned out she was French.

So I had a look for her on YouTube, and ended up watching way more than I thought I would...

[French Humor] Florence Foresti

Made me plain forget to write about how The Great Disruption makes you feel like you have to perform a negative check on your own material these days, or how stand-up in other countries is more like Performance Art.

Here's everything else I've labelled as cool stuff

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Tuesday, 1 January 2013

The Great Disruption

** I've now moved this post, and add to it on this page... **

There's a sense that threads are starting to merge.

When Things On The Web get a disproportionate response...
or When Legacy media (and other areas of life) is less than impressive...
and even when Social Media is a bit rubbish...

They all seem to be speaking to the same theme:

That we might all be living through The Great Disruption.
(or you could just jump down to the radio documentary where I stole this phrase to try to explain it).

#faveposts - My fave posts and articles on the web

How my favourite 10 bits of social media that get a disproportionate response, get a disproportionate response...

For people like me who aimed at careers in legacy media, even saying the phrase 'social media' is difficult.

(Someone I know just floated that there is no such thing as “social media”... now it's just “the web”. Think I feel the same way...).

So here are some examples of the web being social.

Where the stream of content transcends the idea of a one-way-transmission, and picks up its own momentum.

Beyond the Creator's wildest dreams.

(work-in-progress... adding to the list below... this is somewhere to put my links...)

How To Be Creative by Hugh MacLeod Hugh McLeod Hugh Maccloud Mcloud Huw

Hugh McLeod - How To Be Creative

This was the first time I saw someone 'showing their workings'.
Building up a manifesto, and then a book, completely out in the open.
For free.
On a blog.
Allowing anyone to freely comment.
(Here's a link to the first 25% of the book)

Caine's Arcade
Puts my day in perspective.
Defy you to watch this without a lump in your throat.

Antoine Dodson

This is the first report, from a local news bulletin...

Antoine Dodson warns a PERP on LIVE TV! (Original)

(45 million hits to date)

Which lead to this:- Being remixed by auto-tune the news...

(104 million hits to date)

...Which lead to internet fame, earning enough money for the family to move out.

(5.9 million hits to date)

See also: How a crowd came to the aid of bullied bus monitor Karen Klein

Sainsbury's Tiger Bread letter

This is tiger bread.

This family's daughter wrote a letter to Sainsbury's


Why is tiger bread c\alled tiger bread?
It should be c\alled giraffe bread.

The family blog about the letter, and its response - linked here.

This is the reply:

I think renaming tiger bread giraffe bread is a brilliant idea - it looks so much more like the blotches on a giraffe than the stripes on a tiger

from the family's blog

Pictures of the letters trended on twitter

And all of this probably speaks to what Seth Godin termed:
"Do you have a people policy?"
"Hard to imagine a consultant or investor asking the CMO, "so, what's your telephone strategy?"

And then the internet comes along and it's mysterious and suddenly we need an email strategy and a social media strategy and a web strategy and a mobile strategy.

No, we don't.

All of these media are conduits, they are tools that human beings use to waste time or communicate or calculate or engage or learn. Behind each of the tools is a person."
Full link - click here

"Copyleft" - why FREE works

"...the more the audience freely shares the film, the more they purchase DVDs, theater admissions, and merchandise; witness the $$ numbers that prove it."

"Her adventures in our broken copyright system led her to Copyleft her film, and join as Artist-in-Residence."
More here

Seth Godin's blog

Chortle - comedian being ripped off
YouTube allowed a comedian to be ripped off... but it also allows the audience to spot the plagiarism...
(but live comedy undergoing the changes everyone is facing, now that the audience feels it should be able to comment freely: link here)

Webseries: Lonelygirl15
(original post on storygas)
Allowed the audience to comment freely.
Which meant a community emerged. Which simultaneously publicised and made the show better.
See also 'The Guild'.

I've suddenly clung to this as a Grand Unifying Theory for what is behind some of the examples above.

A greater change in society that probably also leans on psychology and sociology, as much as the technology changes.
It's in this documentary called THE GREAT DISRUPTION.

From Peter Day's World of Business

A Great Disruption

...Because it relies on a disruptive new relationship that's not top-down but bottom up.
Cries have gone up from all corners of the working world that things have got to change, that capitalism is broken and that the system can’t go on in the same ways as before.

GlobalBiz: A Great Disruption
Or click on the PLAY button above

1:33 Jay Rodgers:
"We've always known, that for whatever particular thing you're working to do, that there may be somebody who's done it before. Or there may be someone who simply has a better idea about how to get it done.

When we got into the web 2.0 era, where you could not only broadcast on the internet, but take back in feedback - it brought about a world where suddenly you could imagine finding the smartest person to work on a specific solution."

Alan Moore - author, No Straight Lines
7:09 "We've created a working environment for many people, which makes them unhappy.

They are functioning only towards creating shareholder return and monetary value.

But actually this isn't the reason why we want to work, and these aren't the reasons why these organisations should exist in the first place.

7:45 "To ask a CEO to understand - really get their head around what makes a human being work and operate is a really big ask.

Business and organisations inherently changing themselves to be socially organised and orientated around a different type of belief system.

If you take an organisation that says by coming alongside our customers - by actually saying our customers are our co-creators, our co-workers, our marketeers.

We are now having a very different type of dynamic relationship:
we're learning as an organisation, by listening and working with our customers.
We're making better products, because in fact our customers are telling us how to do that.

What we do know is that in today's world, people are seeking to work and collaborate together in different types of ways.

Leadership in that context is the stewardship of enabling people to come with you willingly, rather than dictating how people are going to operate and function."

Jay Rodgers, Local Motors, Arizona - on The Forge
24:00 "What is it that people get from collaborating?
They get fame. They get notoriety. They get education. They get the right to have their name on the side of the product, which is about pride. And then they win money.

So it is a different construct than the idea of I sign employment contract.

I'm bored at my desk.
I'm told by some boss somewhere who ostensibly knows what it is that I am supposed to be doing.
That this is what I'll be working on for the day, the week, the month, the year.

So we're changing the constructs. And some of it is better. And I expect some of it is less stable and therefore worse for people, so we don't have it licked."

Also features Clayton Christensen speaking about
What media companies can learn from the Japanese car industry
And here's a great article on this here...

Here's another Peter Day's World Of Business "Are CEO's Up To The Job"
- – podcast talking to author of "Employees First, Customers Second"
This CEO lets his staff speak completely openly to arrive at collective decisions, and get employees to create the value of the company.

And for balance...
have a look at this great reaction to a campaign video for Bodyform in October 2012.
The flow ran as follows:
1. Light-hearted attack on Bodyform by Facebook member
2. Eight days of silence from Bodyform
3. Video response from a fictional character, supposedly representing Bodyform, sarcastically answering the Facebook member
4. Shared liberally around the web
5. Advertising industry pats itself on the back, other brands want to copy the approach, the agencies win awards
Is that really what we think the potentially of this new media age is? Seriously?
How much authenticity do you think this generates for Bodyform?

The Fallacy of Social Media by Jonathan MacDonald

When Legacy Media is a bit rubbish

Legacy media (everything that's not digital) has a problem with changing things once they've been released.

Digital content tends to best lend itself to works-in-progress and not being entirely correct or closed or 'finished'. "Always in beta".

Legacy media has been about transmitting ideas in a one-way direction - from the creator to the audience.
(Creators might be film directors, an ad agencies, TV broadcasters, magazines etc...)

Bad ads

UK fan is stabbed in Rome.

Probably not the best bit of media buying by British Airways in the Evening Standard...

Boots hamfistedly gets in on that whole Fifty Shades of Grey Business...


Some say this is an example of social media gone bad.

What if it's a great example of social media being good and pass-on-able - and a legacy PR line that's probably disconnected from the first thing most people think.

That Waitrose seems a bit pricey and posh.

Who knows best - the PR effort or The Crowd?

The answer probably doesn't matter... so let's ask The Crowd to join in with your PR effort... (PS haven't checked any of the below...)

Finish the sentence: "I shop at Waitrose because ________." #WaitroseReasons

I shop at Waitrose because Tesco doesn't stock Unicorn food #waitrosereasons

I shop at Waitrose because the M&S "2 dine for £10" attracts the proles. #waitrosereasons

I shop at Waitrose bcuz itz where I cn link al de fit wimmenz, innit #WaitroseReasons

I shop at Waitrose because I can wear chinos and still feel like a peasant. #WaitroseReasons

I shop at Waitrose because I like watching Daily Mail readers support neo-socialist institutions #WaitroseReasons

I shop at Waitrose because I'm a social media commentator working on a rather pedestrian critique of the #WaitroseReasons fail for my blog

I shop at Waitrose because all the other supermarkets are full of povs and stainers. #WaitroseReasons

I shop at Waitrose because darling, Harrods is just too much of a trek mid-week. #waitrosereasons

@waitrose "I shop at Waitrose because..." you say "Ten items or fewer" not "Ten items or less", which is important #WaitroseReasons

Here are thousands of articles about #WaitroseReasons

But here are a load of the actual tweets

Click here for a great explanation of The Great Disruption

Social Media that isn't very impressive...

Googleads that aren't very effective on youtube

"September 11, 2001
A Day Never F--"

Rule 1 of TOTAL Business Mastery:

sensitive advertising

Tampax getting us in the mood for the Olympics 2012:

I'm not a woman, but I still got eyes and a heart.

What's wrong with you? Go for it girls - get over those bloody hurdles.

UPDATE - noone believed the ad above was real. It's real:

QR Codes.

QR codes are so brilliant on a level that I've yet to fully grasp.

Why type in the word of the thing you're interested in,
when you can instead
open an app,
aim your camera,
take (an in-focus) picture,
and wait for the software... take you to exactly the same place instead.

It might seem like 3 times the work,
but this blog catalogues the ambitious examples of the plucky squares that wouldn't ever work, or would get you killed, if you tried going to the effort.

And this lovely blog that pretty much sums up the whole concept of QR codes:

(Still took me 5 minutes to get it...)

"Pictures of People Scanning QR Codes"

Pukka Pies England Band.

(Didn't that used to be the England Supporters Band?)
S'pose all publicity is good publicity...

Man sued for keeping twitter followers

Noah Kravitz tweeted for Phonedog as @Phonedog_Noah, but later changed his username when he left the company - taking 17,000 followers with him.

In a written statement, it said: "The costs and resources invested by Phonedog Media into growing its followers, fans and general brand awareness through social media are substantial and are considered property of Phonedog Media.
Full story here

It reminded me of the great Seth Godin post here:
"Do you have a people strategy"


This used to be a separate post, but no reason not to stick them here.

This is the one place I'll put blog posts and articles I like...

...So I've got somewhere to find them again.

Angels and Errors: How the Harrow & Wealdstone Disaster Helped Shape Modern Britain

"In October 1952 Britain suffered its worst ever peace time rail accident. It was a disaster that would change the country forever."
- Basically, "triage" was brought to disasters in the UK by accident, because a US army base medical team was nearby by chance...

Full article here

Stewpot - Ed Stewart, The Worst Memoir In Showbiz History (by Danny Baker)

Naturally every page is soaked in this vile trite bilge. (Notably though, for an ex pirate radio DJ and BBC pop picker throughout the most tumultuous times in youth culture not a single mention of any meetings with pop stars at all) However it is in his love life that we are given the most pause.

"I met my wife when she was 13, in 1970…" P.146 (He was 34 at this point)

"I arrived (at her parents) at 7pm and was greeted at the door by what I can only describe as a 13 year old apparition! She was simply stunning." (P147)

"…(the following year, so 14 now) I travelled to Italy to see her. I had just split from Eve Graham of The New Seekers and so, as the song goes, I was "Free Again"! P153 He marries the poor girl when she is 17. Elsewhere -

Full article here

Teal and Orange - Hollywood, Please Stop the Madness

Having read this post by Todd Miro, I can't stop spotting this in film and TV drama... to paraphrase:
"Those of you who watch a lot of Hollywood movies may have noticed a certain trend that has consumed the industry in the last few years. It is one of the most insidious and heinous practices that has ever overwhelmed the industry.

He explains it, in full, brilliantly here

There's even a Part 2 here

It's everywhere - checkout the redheads in the icy blue cold outdoors

Are you the office martyr?

...few things have the ability to grate quite like the 3am email from a co-worker, cc-ing in everyone but the cleaner, which on the surface reads like a friendly update but which we all know has the not-so-hidden message, “Just wanted to let you know that while you were snuggled up in your goose-down duvet, I was at work.” It tends to come from the same person who refuses help, thinks delegation is a dirty word and can’t possibly take a holiday in case it pushes the company into liquidation. It’s the office martyr.
Full article here


Tom Ceraulo @tceraulo on "Behind The Scenes at the final days of 30 Rock"

On the last page of Tina's script, the words "END OF SERIES" were circled, and "–30–," journalism jargon for "end of story," was written beneath them. I'd typed "END OF SERIES" into the script the night before without thinking much of it, but seeing it there alongside the show creator's handwriting was profoundly moving. I snapped a photo and put it up on Instagram.

Click here for the full article

Details of every music track from The Benny Hill Show

Essay on Stock Music by William Brown

It's a complete list of every piece of incidental music on The Benny Hill Show.

Everyone talks about 'that' tune that ended the show... but I always loved the bits of music launched by cavorting Hills Angels that then segued to become the music beds that scored the sketches...

Wish I could link to some kind of official channel, but FremantleMedia seems to have removed every single trace of the Thames Television series of "The Benny Hill Show". (An alternative view to how this kind of geoblocking risks going down is here, under The Great Disruption...)

But this list lead me to these obscure (to me) gems from the "Cruise Liner" sketches sequence on Ep1 from 1983...

Michel Delpech - Pour un flirt 1971

Phoebe Cates - Paradise (music & lyrics)

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