In Modern Marketing, a Big Dose of Data in the Creative Juices

Claire Cain Miller, NY Times Bits Blog:

Computers are once again transforming the business of marketing, infusing the art with science. This time, though, the change is being driven by cloud computing and the processing of huge amounts of data about what customers do and what they desire.
Unlike the computer on “Mad Men,” which took up an entire room, the computers processing the data are not even in marketers’ offices but in far-off data centers. But just as in the fictional company depicted on “Mad Men,” the new technology is causing tensions among the quants, or quantitative data analysts, the artists and the information technologists.
For consumers, the result is personalized marketing.
Ideally, consumers do not notice the computing and data-crunching in the background and instead just see more relevant messages from brands, said Ian Schafer, chief executive and founder of Deep Focus, a digital agency. But when marketing is too personalized, it can feel creepy.

Meet The Godfather Of Wearables

Maria Konnikova, The Verge, introduces us to Alex Pentland:

Pentland might be credited as the grandfather of wearable tech, but he does have a few predecessors: more than a decade before he arrived at MIT, mathematician Edward Thorp and computational theorist Claude Shannon devised an intricate contraption with the admirable goal of cheating at the roulette table. The device, which was the size of a cigarette case and captured speed data on both the wheel and the ball, relied on two switches in the wearer’s shoes: one press turned on the computer, the other press initiated the timing. A musical tone would sound in the bettor’s ear to signal when the ball had three or four revolutions left — he would (naturally) be wearing a hearing-aid-like device, attached to the computer by wires camouflaged to match his skin and hair.
Though Thorp and Shannon’s invention was ingenious, it remained unwieldy, capable of performing only a single task. It would take much more to make wearable technology both widely functional and widely usable. And that "more" came from the first place dedicated exclusively to the creation of wearables: the Wearable Computing Project, inaugurated by Pentland upon returning to MIT in 1986, and then formally launched as its own entity in 1998 under the auspices of Pentland’s lab.
The first wearable prototypes that looked anything like those of today emerged from the lab in the early 1990s. And by 1998, Pentland’s "wearables closet" had grown, he recalls, to include "glasses with a private, full-resolution computer display; a health monitor in a watch that records my temperature, heart rate and blood pressure; a computer-in-a-belt with a wireless internet connection; a lapel pin that doubles as a camera and microphone; and a touchpad or keyboard literally sewn into a jacket."

All the recent talk about wearables continues to intensify as the various developer conferences happen and we see (or not) what the main players are thinking in this area. I still believe that the key to this market is going to be the company or product that utilizes software and hardware to actually encourage behavior change. Many reports indicate people start using wearables and within months seize to wear them. It's all in the name, if you are not wearing them they don't really help you. And the best wearable is a good habit.  

The Week's Links: June 13, 2014

All the links posted on social networks this week: 

  • Seven Digital Deadly Sins: An Interactive Reflection of our Digital Selves by The Guardian.
  • The number #1 reason to focus
  • ▶ Leonard Bernstein Discusses Beethoven's 9th Symphony
  • Strategic principles for competing in the digital age- McKinsey & Company
  • The seven habits of highly effective digital enterprises- McKinsey & Company
  • The Fire Hydrant Gets Its First Major Redesign In 100 Years
  • Digitizing the consumer decision journey- McKinsey & Company
  • How Pentagram Rebranded The World's Largest Book Publisher
  • ◉ Millions of words and only six
  • ◉ Recommended: Creative Intelligence: Harnessing the Power to Create, Connect, and Inspire
  • ◉ Your Best Work…
  • Terry Moore: Why is "x" the unknown? You'll be surprised at the answer.
  • Best Works About Post-Graduation
  • Living up to Your (Business) Ideals
  • Ideo Releases A New Photoshop For Interaction Design
  • Rembrandt Lighting: What it is, how to do it
  • Nicholas Negroponte’s Advice for Recent Graduates
  • Signs You're Sleep Deprived
  • “Sleep Procrastination” Is Real, and You Probably Do It
  • ◉ Dancing Shadow Sculptures…
  • New York's Met opera house on edge of precipice, says Peter Gelb
  • ◉ And Answers
  • Favorite Alcoholic Drinks Look Stunningly Colorful Under a Microscope
  • ◉ Recommended: The Gifts of Imperfection: Let Go of Who You Think You're Supposed to Be and Embrace Who You Are
  • Apple's iBeacon gets fun - Computerworld
  • What Would the Planet That Smashed Into the Moon Have Been Like?
  • Here Come the Full Code Conference Videos, Starting With an Overture
  • Fasting Might Regenerate Human Immune System
  • Swift Language Highlights: An Objective-C Developer's Perspective
  • Geneticist George Church tinkers with DNA to fight disease, create new biofuels, and perhaps even resurrect extinct species....
  • Patterns of connections between brain cells could determine vulnerability to stress, depression
  • What Twitch Tells Us About the Future of Social Media
  • ◉ Dan Gilbert: "Human beings are works in progress that mistakenly think they're finished." -…
  • Robots perform Waiting for Godot
  • ◉ Photoshop's Filters In Two
  • The Greatest Advertising Idea Ever Is Here, A game changer, without a doubt
  • ◉ Recommended: Daring Greatly: How the Courage to Be Vulnerable Transforms the Way We Live, Love, Parent, and Lead
  • Hello, World: NASA transmits video from space via laser
  • So great: LEGO Employees Get Minifigure Business Cards Made In Their
  • Early Japanese Animations: The Origins of Anime (1917-1931)
  • Turing Test passed for the first
  • MIT's cooking up robots that can assemble themselves in the oven
  • TED-Ed: How to choose your news - Damon Brown
  • What Myths Do We Most Commonly Realize Are False in Our 20s?
  • What’s Lost as Handwriting
  • ◉ The CIA's first tweet…
  • Educators as Leaders: Motivating
  • ◉ How and Why to Be a Leader
  • One Is Not Enough: Why Creative People Need Multiple Outlets
  • ◉ Recommended: The Innovator's Cookbook: Essentials for Inventing What Is
  • ‘Obey This Film’, A Short Documentary About Street Artist Shepard Fairey
  • The World’s Oldest Pants Were Developed for Riding Horses
  • Seth's Blog: More people saying less (and a few more people saying more)
  • ‘Bricksy: LEGO Banksy’, A Series of LEGO Dioramas Reimagining the Work of Street Artist Banksy
  • Beautiful: Calligraphy Animals, Elegantly Simple Animal Illustrations Created with a Calligraphy Pen
  • 2 Hour Annotated Star Wars Film Reveals the Cinematic Influences Behind George Lucas’ Classic Film
  • How Coke Persuades Its Marketers Around the Globe to Buy Into World Cup
  • ◉ The CIA's first tweet…
  • If We Are Going To Compete For The Future, We Need To Do These 6 Things
  • 10 keys to fundraising for nonprofits on Facebook
  • Profit-Driven Marketing- approaching marketing as a profit center instead of as a cost
  • Why is Business Writing So Awful?
  • Pixar Renderman software set free so you can make your own Toy Story
  • Great resource: Markdown: here, let me show you - BrettTerpstra videos.
  • Gallery A: the secret museum inside the National Gallery
  • 100-Year-Old Negatives Discovered in Block of Ice in Antarctica
  • TOP500 Supercomputer Sites
  • The Ex-Banker Behind the $3 Billion Apple-Beats Deal- Businessweek
  • Why We Have Norman Van Aken to Thank for the Way We Dine Out Today
  • Google launches 'right to be forgotten' webform for removal requests
  • What it’s like to be 100 years old, in 10
  • Surviving Yahoo: Upcoming's social calendar rises again
  • The art of designing Office for iPad
  • Marie Curie: Open source pioneer
  • Next-Generation Responsive Web Design Tools: Webflow, Edge Reflow,
  • How to block Facebook game requests on iPhone and iPad
  • Four things you didn’t know about seasonal allergies
  • Alan Moore launches open source comics app Electricomics (Wired UK)
  • Ad of the Day: Coke Designs a Friendly Bottle That Can Only Be Opened by Another
  • The physics of dance. Two Yale professors thrive where calculation meets
  • ◉ Recommended: Where Good Ideas Come From
  • Nobody Cares How Awesome You Are at Your Job- Businessweek