The traditional Slideshare 's "World's Best Presentation Of The Year" contest has been launched.
Here's my favorite prezo so far. It's about something many whatever designers should think about: simplicity.here.
The traditional Slideshare 's "World's Best Presentation Of The Year" contest has been launched.
Here's my favorite prezo so far. It's about something many whatever designers should think about: simplicity.here.
Yesterday, I've spent 3 hours only at the Paris Auto Show. My focus : the "green" cars. No deception : Hybrids, electric, and hydrogen prototypes, pre-production units, and production cars were all over the place. See my Flickr set for a brief overview.
Among several really interesting machines and concept cars, the Solo 2008 imagined by the Hungarian Antro Group is the one which kept my attention. Not only because of its exterior and interior designs, which both are eye-catching: the overall concept of the project seems to be drafted from scratch, as true breakthrough innovations always are.
Read the short story here.
That's from Hungary, folks. Not Silicon Valley or France (I have quite some doubts such an initiative would be possible here, for French generally dislike open non-profit ideas).
Of course, I discussed a while with the booth attendants. A young and shy Hungarian guy, who doesn't speak french at all (I imagine his nightmare on the week-ends at the show, when Mr. & Ms. Dupond of Aubervilliers - or any other place in France, no offense folks - stop by his booth), and a pretty nice Hungarian woman, speaking english and french like me. Both smiling and engaging, which is rare in such crazy environment such a crowdy day.
For sure, I didn't get her business card, but Antro' s managing director' s : Zsolt Magyar. Google this name, and you'll find this Zsolt Magyar. Can a "Hungarian born, Los Angeles based Production Sound Mixer with more than 7 years of experience" (imdb.com dixit) be also the lead economist at a green tech startup based in his mother country ? Why not. I'll find out this soon, as I'll get in touch with Antro for some sort of new venture I have in mind for the Pau Broadband Country.
Anyway, the actual team is impressive, although I'm definitely not familiar with Hungary and its ecosystem. At first sight, it proves the project to be really serious.
Now, why this free ad for an unknown startup in an unknown country ? Because of the Antro' s booth at the Paris Auto Show is made of... carton. Carton, wood, rope, linen fabric. Amazing. They've pushed the concept of sustainable development to the overall product marketing process. That's the clever thing. I never saw a exhibit in carton before. That's why I think those guys got it right. They understand the true meaning of being green. For them, "Green" is not just a marketing gimmik to gain customers 's attention. It's their philosophy.
See it by yourselves :
the door of the cabinet
Now you get it too, right ? So, next time you do think about being green, think Solo 2008.
A New Yorker artist and scientist, Harris is leading an outstanding project : "We Feel Fine".
It's all about people' s feelings. Amazingly captivating. Just this little warning : it's so captivating that you may end up spending the whole day exploring the Web through Harris and his team' s eyes. Quite a nice way to forget the rude reality of the daily life at the office ;-)
I'm posting this short note from the kids' s 1999' iMac DV SE. A 400MHz PowerPC G3 chip, 512MB RAM and 20GB internal hard disk, this Mac has been my own machine from November 1999 until the early days of 2003. It's been running MacOS 8, MacOS 9, and MacOS X, from the Beta up to the current MacOS X 10.4.11.
For the basic tasks such as word processing and web surfing this 9-years old computer do the job just fine. Amazingly smooth interactions. No interface glitches. No significant degradation of the overall performances degradation compared to the actual settings - OS + apps - of its birth almost a decade ago. Which reminds me of the good old Agilent Mini-OTDR E6000 : a 8-yrs old test instrument that beats state-of-the-art way more recent machines on every single key feature, but that's another story ;-)
Back to the Mac. Whilst I'm typing this post, I'm listening to music. The local iTunes playing my own library, located on my MacBook (one floor above), through the home network. The iMac is connected on the net thanks to PLC power line communication, 85Mbps plugs.
In the meantime, my good old PowerBook G4 (which survived a 850°F fire in March 2005) is synching wirelessly on TimeMachine; its backup drive ? a 500GB external hard disk hooked up the MacBook.
Last, I control the iMac' s iTunes with my iPhone, thanks to Remote.
No hassles, no hurdles. Everything Apple is intuitive, smooth, and dead simple ***. That's why I love Apple.
post-scriptum : besides the internal disk and the memory which I upgraded back in 2002, the only thing I've changed on the iMac is the keyboard and the mouse. Simply because the new Apple keyboard is more convenient than the old one (tiny keys, sometimes clunky touch), and the Mighty Mouse is an amazing piece of Industrial Design per the (Apple) book.
*** of course, you can do all that stuff with Wintel PCs. But can you do it so easily ? Just try this one : remote control your non-iTunes music library with your non-iPhone smartphone. Count how many clicks you need to set up the whole thing, and call me back.
As I've both an iPhone and a PocketPC, I can do head-to-head comparison. I swear, it's not because I'm an Apple Fanboy, but the AppStore rocks and the WinMobApps sucks. A matter of product design, of course : the user experience per se, with the integration of the store into a global solution, the ease-of-use, etc.
For instance, the Microsoft store requires you to install Silverlight, to enable the caroussel type of product selection. Guess what : this feature is embedded into Mac OS X (ever heard of CoverFlow ?)...
That is a pretty stupid strategy from the guys in Redmond (another one ? ;-), proving that Microsoft is struggling like hell to stay... alive.
Funny MacDailyNews take on that one : "Any day now, we expect a post-liposuction Ballmer to show up at some trade show dressed in jeans and a black mock turtleneck saying "Boom!" a lot."
For those of you who a) use Firefox 3, and b) a RSS feed aggregator & reader, Feedly is the add-on you need.
Read the comprehensive presentation here on Mashable, so you'll get the whole picture.
I use Feedly since Day One (as well as Firefox 3, of course) : it's both simple and powerful, flexible and easy to set up and use. The page looks like an online magazine (which it is, at the end of the day), unlike Netvibes or GoogleReader. With its typical Web 2.0 attributes, such as The Wall where others can share with you recommendations and annotations.
Since Feedly is an add-on to your browser, you don't need to go to Netvibes or GoogleReader any longer : set Feedly as your homepage, that's all you need to do. Sure, you can do the same with your traditional RSS reader, but it's not "integrated" into your browser.
I'm convinced Feedly is another step forward to the true Enterprise 2.0, since it enables the user to aggregate multiple information and content onto a single page without the need to connect to an external website. A brief look at the Feedly's mash-up diagram tells me we've now everything in hands to create, implement, and truly use simple yet efficient & productive vertical *Web 2.0-based* applications...
A wonderful tool to analyze a text to find out the most frequent words in it.
See here the result on a 12-pages document I wrote back in 2002 at Agilent Technologies for the introduction of a new product : the Modular Network Tester. This document was aimed at presenting the new platform to the sales channels. Look at the corresponding cloud, and you'll get the message ;-)
Thanks to Bruno Giussiani for the heads up.
The lovely city of Pau is truly The Broadband Country. See this hand dryer in the restrooms at the Pau airport. The Dyson Airblade™. It wipes your hands dry in a matter of seconds, the time for you to realize that it's done. When hygiene and fun meet. That's innovation, Folks !
For more details on the Airblade™, go here.
You may read the whole "Why Airblade" section : it's a pretty nice lesson of product marketing.
Also, the Customer Service part is a model. I never thought hands drying could be so interesting.
I've revamped the Fiber On Demand blog. Was a matter of a few clicks only, thanks to Yahoo!Pipes (see the features in the previous post). Aggregating content from different sources onto a single web page has never been so easy.
Just missing a 3D/whirling/magnifying carousel, which will be available in a next release I guess.
I've updated the FiberNews site.
After a few months out in the wild space of the blogosphere, it was time for a first revamp.
First modification : more news, coming from more online resources - adding RSS feeds with Yahoo!Pipes is just a matter a seconds.
Second modification, thanks to the new "Get a Badge" feature : replacement of the Google Map mashup by the Yahoo Map, directly from Pipes. Just outstanding. It's mashup for the rest of us.
You can visit FiberNews here.
Add the FiberNews as a badge on your own site, or get the RSS feed, JSON, PHP, KML and more - including getting the results by email or phone - here.
My public pipes are available here. Feel free to copy, paste, and use.
See here. The Flip is a brand new camcorder made by Pure Digital Technologies "for the rest of us".
Simple, easy to use, and just enough features for 80% of the population. On top, the Flip is pretty much affordable for most of us (at Agilent, I've learned not to say "cheap" ;-).
Definitely a gadget that could have been designed by Apple. Which, I suppose, has served as a model for the definition and creation of The Flip.
Look at this snapshot, which I captured this morning on "my" laptop PC (you know, this brand new Dell Latitude sporting a CoreDuo but no built-in WiFi ;-).
Translation, for those of you who don't read french in the XP texts : " the folder 'Emploi' contains items with names too long to be contained by the trash."
Reminder : this is Windows XP, licensed in 2007. The folks in Redmond will never stop surprising me.
* ed. note : I replaced the word "hate" by "don't like". Because a computing stuff is not worth the hate, even if it's MS-branded. Actually, there are much more critical fights than this one those days, don't you think ?...
Thanks to Master Guy Kawazaki (and the Magic of the Blogosphere), I discovered the recently published article in Smashing Magazine : Data Visualization: Modern Approaches. For all of you manipulating data to be presented to end-users, customers, or managers, this article (and the related comments, full of links too) is a must-read. It's a given that the web sites and tools mentionned are must-bookmark ;-)
Thanks to the endless sources of distraction offered by the Blogosphere, here is the map structure of this weblog.
What do the colors mean ?
blue: for links (the A tag)
red: for tables (TABLE, TR and TD tags)
green: for the DIV tag
violet: for images (the IMG tag)
yellow: for forms (FORM, INPUT, TEXTAREA, SELECT and OPTION tags)
orange: for linebreaks and blockquotes (BR, P, and BLOCKQUOTE tags)
black: the HTML tag, the root node
gray: all other tags
The post "Top-Ten Quotes by Raymond Loewy" becoming more and more popular (thanks to Google and PresentationZen :-), here is a new tribute to Loewy's extraordinary vision. Just a brief overview of the Father of Industrial Design' taste for Beauty.
For more information, visit the Official Web Site of Raymond Loewy here, Loewy Design here, Loewy Group here, and the Raymond Loewy Foundation here.
I am very proud to claim that I could have been part of the jury myself, and I can prove it here !
It's time to have a look at the contest which was launched last month by the folks at Slideshare. To date, 250- entries are listed.
After sorting the view per popularity (to go faster), I've been browsing through the half of it - that is 6 pages : no front slide catched my eyes but the first two. IMHO, those two presentations should be among the Top-5 by the closing of the contest on April 23d. They've got it all : a) you don't need a presenter to understand their meaning; b) they tell a story, from A to Z; c) they keep you captivated. On top of it, their respective first slide is not a trap : the inside is as good as the outside...
Then, here are my two favorites :
Note : ' Shift Happens ' is a slideshow based on a presentation titled " Did You Know? "created by Karl Fisch, teacher at the Arapahoe High School. Thanks to the magic of Internet, I found Karl' s blog yesterday : The Fishbowl is just an amazing piece of knowledge.
The story behind " Did you know " is here. And here too, under the title " Gone Fishin' ", with the video (and music) on YouTube here.
Shift Happens on Slideshare (well, that's right ;-) : click here.
Meet Henry on Slidshare (hum, Henry should be busy right now ;-) : click there.
For those of you who don't want to leave FiberGeneration now, enjoy (and vote)
Reading CNET the other night, a headline grabbed my attention : " Record exec: Mobile industry could learn from Apple "
A report by Marguerite Reardon of CNET News.com. Quote Marguerite :
In a keynote address at the CTIA Wireless trade show, EMI's Eric Nicoli warned the industry that it would not reach its potential if mobile operators, handset makers and content providers don't work together and put the customer first. He said they need to make sure that every product they develop for consumers is one that people want, is easy to use, and provides value at an affordable price.
"We will not reach our goals if we carry on as we have been doing," he said. "Not to diminish what we have achieved so far, but there are important challenges to address if we want to take this business to the next level. And that means we must put the customer at the forefront."
"Apple makes stuff that people love to own," Nicoli said. "They love the simplicity and user-friendliness of the iPod and iTunes. Apple doesn't employ any sorcery or dark magic to achieve this. They listen to what consumers want. And that shouldn't be Apple's unique privilege."
Very interesting indeed. Those folks at the Mobile industry are definitely not Average Joe, they have MBAs - at least, they play golf with their peers of Wall Street, their business is driving the whole Telecoms industry at large - at the end of the day, we need fibers to carry mobiles 's signals. So, how come they forgot a simple fact, which even self-made-men like myself do know and apply every single day since the very begining ? : " It is the customer who determines what a business is...What the customer thinks he is buying, what he considers value, is decisive--it determines what a business is, what it produces, and whether it will prosper." Peter Drucker, Management: Tasks, Responsibilities, Practices, 1974, p 61.
Maybe they were driven by bozozity until the very moment Steve Jobs unveiled the iPhone ? By claiming that " [the Mobile industry] need to make sure that every product they develop for consumers is one that people want ", Mr. Nicoli
admits that they all tells his pals at the Mobile Industry that they failed listening to their customers. Now, he also made a giant step towards recovery : he is learning. He's learning that the Mobile industry has he tells them they have to learn about its their own mistakes, its their competition (Apple is coming after them with the iPhone), and its their environment.
So, what is learning, in business ? I found no better way to explain the whole idea than what Hal Stitt, my coach during my Musketeers years at Agilent Technologies, says :
" learning as a winning business strategy means learning more and learning faster than your rivals do about your customers, your competitors, your business environment and the opportunities available for your business to win customers. "
Hal likes to describe the whole concept with this diagram, based on Peter Drucker' assessment which claims that it's the customer who decides the winner.
I like it too, for it is crisp and clear. Plus, according to my own experience as a customer in B2B since 20+ years, it is exactly the way it works : a short loop, involving both the customer and the vendor in a constant dialog, always makes this vendor successful.
Perhaps the guys in the Mobile Industry were more used to a more rigid process, such as this one :
Definitely not a KISS ' Keep It Simple, Stupid ' approach, such as the one developped by David Kolb in the early 80's : -------
In this diagram, replace " Concrete, Experience" by " Customer ", " model " by " Application ", " Test " by " Feedback ", and " Reflect " by " Product ", and you get another representation of Drucker's model. Please note that I didn't put the accordingly modified diagram on purpose : do it yourself, you will better... learn ;-)
Back in 2001, Hal Stitt has published a white paper " About Learning " . I am pleased to post the first three pages, for it explain the whole idea :
LEARNING VERSUS KNOWING ORGANIZATIONS
Contrasts and Comparisons
Most organizations we have seen and read about over the past 40 years have focused more on knowing than on learning. Knowing is a state, learning is an action. Learning changes the state of knowing.
Knowing organizations promote and hire people mainly based on what they have done, on what they know. Less value is placed on the person's ability to learn. Training focuses on skills and processes with a direct impact on job performance. Little or no effort is put into training people to learn, encouraging learning, or rewarding learning.
Management effort in knowing organizations focuses on getting better and better at what the organization does, instead of what it could become. Effort is more likely to be put on careful measurement of results and comparing them with expectations than on encouraging learning. Knowing organizations put people in jobs to get results, to fix problems, to turn around failing organizations. If sales are not up to expectations, they will bring in a sales manager who knows how to fix that. If manufacturing is not meeting expectations, they will bring in a new manager who knows how to fix it. If the company is not meeting investors' expectations, they will bring in a new CEO who knows how to fix that.
In knowing organizations, learning is seen as down time. It interferes with performing.
Learning organizations hire and promote people based more on their ability to learn than on what they already know, more on what they can do than what they have already done. Learning organizations realize that results are related to actions by probability. They realize that just because something worked in the past doesn't mean it will work in the future. They realize that just because something worked in another company or another organization doesn’t mean it will work in your company or in your organization.
Knowing is not transferable across organizations or over time. The situation changes, but knowing is static. Learning is transferable. Learning is dynamic. Learning includes learning about changes in the situation.
Sun Tzu's quote is often misunderstood. The time at which your must know the enemy better than yourself
is at the time of the battle. In war, what you knew yesterday, last week, last month, last year can get you killed. In business, it just means your customers buy from your competitors.
Learning organizations see learning as a competitive sport. If they can learn more and learn faster than their competitors, they can outperform those competitors.
Innovation is a core business function. Innovation is the engine powering successful competition. Learning drives innovation. Without a stream of new learnings, innovation only happens by accident.
What your organization will learn outweighs what it already knows.
We see three fundamental reasons why what your organization will learn is more important than what it already knows:
Knowledge and experience were gained in the past. There is no logical reason to believe the future will be like the past.
A very high proportion of knowledge and experience is similar among competitors. It is too often a very weak differentiator.
The belief that the organization already has the answers leads to arrogance and complacency, which leads to defeat.
Learning is the root of competition
Your organization is either learning and innovating better than your competitors, in the eyes of your customers, or you are a target for those who are. Learning leads to innovation, which leads to winning—if you innovate better than your competitors, in the opinion of the customers.
The most valuable learnings lie outside your organization *
Getting good information first hand from good sources outside the organization, but within the system the organization serves, is a core behavior of learning organizations.
Learning only counts when it affects behavior
We do not advocate learning for learning's sake. Learning has no value to the organization unless it affects behavior. Not learning or learning the wrong things is bad enough, but we believe learning the right things and not acting on the learning is the worst possible outcome. It kills morale and motivation in the people who have learned something vital to the organization's success if they are prevented from acting by decision makers who have not. It's ludicrous! The people who have learned something vital are the people the decision makers should be motivating.
The purpose of learning is to win
We believe the most important purpose of learning is to create changes that will create wins. That is diametrically opposite to the purpose of hierarchical organizations: to develop and maintain order and control.
All businesses learn about their businesses. But the winners learn more about their customers and competitors than their competitors do. To win, most customers must prefer your products and services over your competitors. You cannot get customers to prefer your products and services by focusing your learning on your own organization— by looking in your mirrors. It requires learning about your customers. It requires understanding your customers well enough to know what your organization can do for them in the future that they will prefer over the offerings of your competitors.
*note : helping clients do that is one of DeltaNet's core strengths. To contact Hal @ DeltaNet, click here.
Peter Drucker' official biography here.
--- updated Apr. 2d, 2007, after EMI announcement on DRM-free ---
During almost four months last year, I've been working quite hard with a friend of mine to setup a new venture, so-called Wahoom (okay, I know what you're saying : just another Web 2.0 crap thing). Wahoom was intended to be a Design & Decoration firm, aimed at selling high-priced luxury items to * rich people *. From porcelain hand-made furniture to fiber-optics-illuminated swimming pools, we were going to make big money with the big guys of Dubai, L.A., Moscow, and Miami.
Actually, Wahoom was my friend's idea. He wanted me to work with him as a partner, because of my ability to develop new business from scratch. Brainstorming the business plan was an interesting exercise, writing down the product plan was fun, and putting together the sales strategy was exciting (hey, I never thought I was going to sell something to a sex-shop in Castro ;-)
Also, I discovered a couple of new areas : 3D-modeling, resin-made over-sized objects, sculpture...
Nevertheless, I pulled off. Because, according to my experience and more, to my convictions, this project was a dead-end. Making money just for the pleasure to make money doesn't make sense to me. We were willing to sell upper-priced stuff to super-upper-class people : what's the point here ?... We couldn't succeed on the long run.
To understand why I terminated the Wahoom project, there is no better explanation than reading the slide, from the famous presentation on the real secrets of success by Richard St. John at TED'05.
I got all the points on John' s success factors' scorecard but two of them :
Wahoom was no passion to me, and it didn't serve anyone for good.
To watch this remarkable 3-minute slideshow, which is a star on YouTube and blogs, please click here or... stay there and click on the video right now ! Enjoy the ride.
As someone with a certain taste for Aestheticism, I do really enjoy the creations of Jonathan Ive and Philippe Starck. Both of them bring Design at its highest level in their respective domains. Simplicity at its best, for the best user experience. Reading the recent post of PresentationZen 's Garr Reynolds on the elimination of the nonessential in presentation' design, I immediately thought about Industrial Design' father Raymond Loewy : " Never Leave Well Enough Alone " is one of my favorite books of all time. In my humble opinion - I am not a designer per se, as I don't do Design as a living - Loewy invented the whole stuff. To make it short, there won't an iPod, shall Loewy have decided to stay in France after World War I. Therefore, I am pretty surprised not to see that much reference to his work today. Maybe because he's French ;-)
Here are my ten favorite quotes by Raymond Loewy.
Note : I've added a couple of photos of actual products - from Apple, of course - for you to get the point, eventually. I bet you'll understand how visionnary Loewy was. And why all the modern Design gurus should thank him every time they get an award. Keep in mind : Raymond Loewy died in 1986 (at the age of 92).
"The main goal is not to complicate the already difficult life of the consumer."
"Today every city, town, or village is affected by it. We have entered the Neon Civilization and become a plastic world…. It goes deeper than its visual manifestations, it affects moral matters; we are engaged, as astrophysicists would say, on a decaying orbit."
"I alienated the automotive industry by saying that cars should be lightweight and compact…. I'd also kill chrome forever, or any other applied junk."
"It's shape is aggressively female - a quality that in merchandise, as in life, sometime transcends functionalism."
-- referring to the Coca-Cola bottle shape
"Form, which should be the clean-cut expression of mechanical excellence, has become sensuous and organic."
"I believe one should design for the advantage of the largest mass of people, first and always. That takes care of ideologies and sociologies. I think one also should try to elevate the aesthetic level of society. And to watch quality control always, while insisting others do, too."
"Between two products equal in price, function and quality, the one with the most attractive exterior will win."
"I once said that the most difficult things to design are the simplest. For instance, to improve the form of a scalpel or a needle is extremely difficult, if not impossible. To improve the appearance of a threshing machine is easy. There are so many components on which one can work."
"It would seem that more than function itself, simplicity is the deciding factor in the aesthetic equation. One might call the process beauty through function and simplification."
"Style for the sake of style alone will have less meaning to the consumer than value. An interruption of the spiral created by boosting sales from year to year with false inducements of style, bulk and flash gives design a new lease on life. Aesthetic beauty will be the direct result of careful planning and precision manufacturing."
Bonus Track, DRM-free : "The most beautiful curve is a rising sales graph."
Last year, Wired has published a long article : " Steve Jobs' Best Quotes Ever ". Here are my ten favorites. At the end of the day, those quotes tell who is Steve Jobs (did I ever told you that I would like to work for him before I die ? ;-)
I suggest that you read the date first, then read the quote :
you will then notice how funny or visionary it was.
Also, note that I sorted the quotes in perspective with the resurgence of the Cupertino firm since Jobs' s return at the head of the company... 10 years ago.
ps : BrainyQuote has some interesting stuff too (e.g. the 3 at the bonus track at the end of this post).
"Apple has some tremendous assets, but I believe without some attention, the company could, could, could -- I'm searching for the right word -- could, could die." -- On his return as interim CEO, in Time, Aug. 18, 1997
"You know, I've got a plan that could rescue Apple. I can't say any more than that it's the perfect product and the perfect strategy for Apple. But nobody there will listen to me." -- Fortune, Sept. 18, 1995
"The cure for Apple is not cost-cutting. The cure for Apple is to innovate its way out of its current predicament." -- Apple Confidential 2.0: The Definitive History of the World's Most Colorful Company, by Owen W. Linzmayer
"Innovation has nothing to do with how many R&D dollars you have. When Apple came up with the Mac, IBM was spending at least 100 times more on R&D. It's not about money. It's about the people you have, how you're led, and how much you get it." -- Fortune, Nov. 9, 1998
"It's really hard to design products by focus groups. A lot of times, people don't know what they want until you show it to them." -- BusinessWeek, May 25 1998
"The desktop computer industry is dead. Innovation has virtually ceased. Microsoft dominates with very little innovation. That's over. Apple lost. The desktop market has entered the dark ages, and it's going to be in the dark ages for the next 10 years, or certainly for the rest of this decade." -- Wired magazine, February 1996
"Why would I ever want to run Disney? Wouldn't it make more sense just to sell them Pixar and retire?" -- Fortune, Feb. 23, 2004
"It's better to be a pirate than to join the Navy." -- Odyssey: Pepsi to Apple
"There are sneakers that cost more than an iPod." -- On the iPod's $300 price tag, Newsweek, Oct. 27, 2003
"We made the buttons on the screen look so good you'll want to lick them." -- Jobs, on Mac OS X's Aqua user interface (Fortune, Jan. 24, 2000)
bonus track, DRM-free ;-)
personal comment : the latest is another piece of evidence that Steve Jobs and Raymond Loewy have something in common...
Being both a Cycling fan (I am cyclist myself) and a Bay Area lover (I was living in San Francisco during the 1906 earthquake - I'm serious : I firmly believe I died during the resulting fire... and that's the reason why I want to go back there for the rest of my - actual - life), I watch the Tour of California live on... the Net.
The race's website < www.amgentourofcalifornia.com > offers outstanding features packed in the Tour Tracker 2.0 tool, developped jointly by Adobe and CSC. As the press release claims :
Launching Feb. 18, the site's Tour Tracker 2.0, designed specifically for the Amgen Tour of California, will employ the latest technology from founding partners CSC and Adobe to provide the ultimate viewing experience for cycling fanatics and casual observers alike. Tour Tracker 2.0 is a lightweight Flash-based application built using Adobe Flex technology that is pioneering a new generation of rich Internet applications. Tour Tracker 2.0 requires Adobe Flash Player, which is installed on more than 700 million personal computers worldwide. Some of the features will include:
- Full-screen capable live video stream of each stage from start to finish (provided by Adobe)
- Enhanced user interface featuring elevation, route, rider and peloton positions, and text race commentary (provided by Adobe)
- Archived stage video clips
- GPS photography for each stage that pinpoints highlights along the route (provided by Adobe and CSC)
- GPS tracking for top riders and official vehicles (provided by CSC)
- GPS data will provide first-hand knowledge of the top rider positions along the route and overall peloton location, as well as elevation information, general speed and overall miles from the finish
- Minute-by-minute textual race commentary exclusively reported by VeloNews
- Two audio channels, including live audio commentary from sports journalist JoE Silva and former cyclists Robbie Ventura and Chris Gutowsky, and an official radio tour stream that lets listeners hear what race officials hear
- Mobile (WAP) site for information and text updates for each stage so fans on the go can access race information from mobile phones and devices
The question is : what does a post on Cycling do on FiberGeneration ? Actually, this : the point is, the Amgen Tour of California website is a perfect example of what a Testing 2.0 website for end-users (read : Telcos) should be. Sites maps with GPS tracking and data, live video feeds of the network' s installation, video and photos archives, audio commentaries, dedicated site for access by mobile users, etc...
I created FiberGeneration.com as a product. I held numerous brainstorming sessions with myself for a long time, I drafted the roadmap, I built the product plan, I put together the marketing and the sales plans. Then, I started the implementation. As of today, the execution is fairly on schedule. A couple of issues with the widgets here and there, that's it. However, I missed to complete one thing for you : the feature list, i.e. what are you going to read next time on this blog.
I am glad to introduce now this 'future articles list', for you to get a better vision of what's coming up next (no chronological order here) :
- Steve Jobs, the most brillant son of Raymond Loëwy (it's about Industrial Design)
- A bozzo in business (nothing to do with the above !)
- The Pocket-OTDR (that's related to the bozzo thing ;-)
- Product Design : Steve Jobs on Microsoft Zune (this one is also a bozzo thing ;-)
- My take on Web 2.0 gadgets in the Telecoms Test & Measurement industry (very serious)
- Launch fiber vs. patchcord in OTDR testing (don't worry, it's not for experts)
- Selling Pierre Cardin suits (my best experience as a salesman so far)
- Testing 2.0 (finally) : Onto a true low-cost business model in the Telecoms Test & Measurement industry (very serious, huh ?)
- Best Of The Week (this one is planned for next week)
Plus, as many as I can publish on my numerous experiences at HP/Agilent, without breaking the confidentiality rule.
I hope you will enjoy the ride !
Garr Reynolds of Presentation Zen has posted a very complete article about Slideshare. In summary, Garr still wonders what the so-called presentation sharing website is about. As I do (although I am proud to have one of my presentations in the Top-40 of the month ;-)...
As of this morning 10:00AM CET, the Wahoom! introduction is ranked #20 of the week, with 211 views (i swear I have not setup an Automator robot to create artificial hits from my Mac ;-). Hey, ten years after my golden age on Usenet, my name will soon com back in the search engines !
The Powerline/FTTH comics continues with a 10 hits a day, with 54 views.
I have uploaded a new version of the Wahoom' presentation, with a new name that includes the "2.0" gimmick, and new tags such as "internet" and "sales". Will see which outcomes in a couple of days.
Here is the presentation I have created for an ISP going to launch its FTTH services next year. The goal is to introduce Powerline Technology as the technology of choice for home networking, considering that Fiber To The Home brings more than 50 mbit/s to the Subscriber. Of course, this post contains only public information (no names here - watch the newswire in Q1 2007 for more details ;-)
I will come back soon on the content of this presentation : FTTH, Powerline, etc. For the time being, I just wanted to highlight the format : no PowerPoint here (hey, I'm a Mac guy, see what I mean ?), no Keynote either - which is an amazing tool for designers/presenters. No slides per se, thanks to Comics Life (for Mac only ;-). What better tool for story telling (a presentation IS a story) than a comics ?
I chose not to use Keynote because the audience is a prospect known for its strategy : innovation, always a step ahead of its competitors. An innovative way to present innovative technology to innovative people !
By the way, I put the file (w/o names and business-related stuff, of course) on SlideShare.net here. 27 views over 23 hours, that is quite a good ratio ;-)
Ah, there is one more thing : you are seeing small size jpg files. It is on purpose : most of you don't have an FTTH connection as of today...
Among the Bubble-like number of Web 2.0 start-up companies burgeoning every week, Slideshare is worth the try. The YouTube for PowerPoint, Slideshare allows users to share their presentations. At the moment, no privacy : every single uploaded file is public, so beware when considering using Slideshare for your business. On the other hand, it could be a nice way to make the World know about your job...
Of course, as on the other file sharing websites - Flickr, YouTube, etc - there is a lot of crap stuff done by supposed-to-be-the-next-new-economy-icon. However, many established companies and startups are using Slideshare to publish their business-oriented ppt.
A pretty nice example here...
Oh, by the way : Slideshare is also a wonderful tool to spot people creating their prezos with MS PowerPoint and those playing with Keynote...
The Chinese Consumer Electronics maker BenQ has won the IF Design Award 2006 with its beautiful " Black Box " project.
A real versatile mobile gear, featuring a fabulous design that has probably raised attention from Steve Jobs and Jonathan Ive.
post-scriptum : I'd love changing my Razr for the BlackBox. Until Apple unleash its iPhone ;-)