Platform Monopolies – AVC

“The Internet, at its core, is a marketplace that, over time, removes the need for the middleman. That is very good news for the talent that has been giving up a fairly large part of its value to all of the toll takers in between them and their end customers.”

“…But there is another aspect to the Internet that is not so comforting. And that is that the Internet is a network and the dominant platforms enjoy network effects that, over time, lead to dominant monopolies.”

via Platform Monopolies – AVC.

Moonwalking with Einstein

Closing quote from the book ‘Moonwalking with Einstein: The Art and Science of Remembering Everything‘ by Joshua Foer (2011). To describe it as a self help book about improving one’s memory is to miss the point. Well written, engaging, funny. A highly recommended read.

In support of training one’s mind to be better at memory versus the ease and accessibility of ‘external’ memories: the tools we have around us and rely on heavily each day (post its, diaries, smartphones):

“How we perceive the world and how we act in it are products of how and what we remember. We’re all just a bundle of habits shaped by our memories. And to the extent that we control our lives, we do so by gradually altering those habits, which is to say the networks of our memory. No lasting joke, invention, insight or work of art was ever produced by an external memory. Not yet at least. Our ability to find humour in the world, to make connections between previously unconnected notions, to create new ideas, to share in common culture: all these essentially human acts depend on memory. Now more than ever, as the role of memory in our culture erodes at a faster pace than ever before, we need to cultivate our ability to remember. Our memories make us who we are. They are the seat of our values and the source of our character.”

Cardboard Reality

google_vr

Cute. See the main site and resources to build your own cardboard VR set here.

Was Google Glass too expensive and they needed a low-end, mass-market product!? Joking aisde, I think this is really fun idea. Accessible. Low tech.

“Depending on who you ask at I/O, Google went ahead with this project either because it wanted to show that Facebook overpaid for Oculus Rift or because it is jealous that it couldn’t acquire it. According to Coz, however, who works for Google’s Cultural Institute in Paris, Cardboard was simply a project he felt like working on.”

(from Frederic Lardinois, The Story Behind Google’s Cardboard Project, Techcrunch, 26th June)

Any other inside track on where this might lead?

Twitter and the future of media consumption

“Twitter’s focus, Costolo explained, is on pushing rich media content into the platform, from video to ecommerce services.

The CEO clarified chatter from as far back as January that Twitter would integrate ecommerce services into its platform. “We think about commerce in terms of in-the-moment commerce,” he said. This method involves building ecommerce capabilities that manifest in real time depending on what a Twitter user is doing, talking about or seeing.

Costolo cited two tests he said were successful. The first was with American Express – in which a consumer might see a tweet from an American Express merchant like Whole Foods, respond and get a discount at the merchant’s location by swiping an American Express card.

The second test was with Amazon, which enabled Twitter users to respond to an Amazon tweet with the hashtag #AmazonCart to add goods into a shopping cart.”

via Adexchanger (Ryan Joe, 20 June)