The Royal College of Art's graduate show has opened, and this year, the show-stopper was a plug. Min-Kyu Choi impressed every passer by with his neat, apparently market-ready plug that folds down to the width of an Apple MacBook Air. "The MacBook Air is the world's thinnest laptop ever. However, here in the UK, we still use the world's biggest three-pin plug," says Choi.
I hope this guy makes a lot of money. This is a really wonderful piece of design. So well thought out. Check out the way he would do a multi-plug:
Original article on iconeye.com
This is a haiku posted to John Maeda's blog in 2007, which some enterprising people have turned into a very nice little print using sign letters from a junk shop. It echoes the thinking - doing things - thinking virtuous cycle that I stole from someone a while back and have been using in meetings ever since.
The picture above is available to buy from 20x200.com
Beautifully made mini-documentary both deconstructing magazine design, talking about adapting this to digital magazine design. Hearteningly, the page turn effect is comprehensively debunked.
"The concept aims to capture the essence of magazine reading, which people have been enjoying for decades: an engaging and unique reading experience in which high-quality writing and stunning imagery build up immersive stories."
Two things about this ad, which I saw on the tube today.
1) in the big advertising references game, I call this as wordle
2) the idea of a personal claims handler for water, while timely is a bit rubbish isn't it? It's a bit like saying if your car is hit by any kind of Peugeot the insurance company will send someone over to stroke your hair in hospital.
However, the human mind is quite bad at evaluating risks and I think there is some research to suggest that the more specific you are about a risk, the more likely people perceive it as happening. So if you ask someone what the chances are of there being a major earthquake in the world sometime this month, they will give you one estimate, but if you ask them what the chances are of a major earthquake in Los Angeles this month they will give you an estimate suggesting it is more likely - even though the set of places in Los Angeles is inside the set of places in the world. This is covered in the excellent book 'Made to Stick' by Chip and Dan Heath.
I guess since insurance companies want you to fear specific, concrete things and perceive them as likely to happen this is a good approach, given they probably assign personal claim handlers for all expensive cases like flooding - since it's probably good at keeping the costs down.
Anyone who has been to an ad agency, or one of the other disciplines that we insist on splitting ourselves down into, will have noticed the conspicuous consumption that goes on in the interior decor department. In fact you would imagine that this is counterproductive as presumably clients walk in and think to themselves wow - these guys must be charging me too much look at all this spare money they have. It must be time to renegotiate the contract...
How could it be that this state of affairs has come about. The short answer I suppose is that everyone else is doing it, so our preening egos don't want to the chumps with a formica table and a dodgy pot plant on reception. I have a theory about the long answer; in that why is everybody else doing it?
Consider you are considering starting an ad agency. It has got to be one of the most capital unintensive industries that there is. What do you actually need? Two, maybe three people, a couple of phones and (nowadays) an internet connection. Assuming you don't pay yourselves a salary to begin with, you are talking about an investment of around £5000 each.
This is in part responsible for the terrible over-supply of ad agencies in the marketplace. In such an environment start ups sparkle brightly and then die out on an alarmingly regular basis.
As a purchaser of advertising services, you want to be sure that your people are going to be around for a significant amount of time. They are handling several millions of pounds of your money and you want to be sure you have not hired a group of travelling hobos or other shiftless bums to your FCOJ account.
So therefore, like banks, who handle large amounts of money for their clients on trust, agencies need to give across the impression of stability, permanence and the appearance of great wealth. So we decorate our offices with marble, brushed steel and exotic woods so people don't think we're fly by night chancers.
This year their I'm a Mac / I'm a PC campaign got a response from Microsoft. In a change from the standard approach of the market leader which is to ignore the competition in communications, the big blue monster came out with their own 'I'm a PC' campaign that tries to show PC users as the full range of creative, scientific, working and playing people that make up their users. Given even now, at their lowest point they still control over 92% of the home computer operating system market it shows they are taking the threat seriously.
People's perceptions of a brand health a lead indicator of future sales and onwards to customer satisfaction. Apple had been cutting into Microsoft's market share in tiny, but reliable bites and they need to deal with it if they want to stay at no. 1.The I'm a PC campaign that broke over the past year is a really fantastic piece of work making the corporate Ogre that Microsoft had become come across as human, self effacing and even funny. Perhaps even a little bit what Mac was like back in the day.
So while I agree that distinctiveness is vital (the Trifecta of Ogilvy, Bernbach and Law cannot be disputed), it is not necessarily that case that total originality is required, simply rather that the majority of the people you are exposing the work to consider it to be different enough to warrant attention.a recombinant age, but as pedants the world over write, was it ever thus. John Webster was well know for taking inspiration from situations in the street, other art work or references in culture. Who cares? William Shakespeare nicked all sorts of things including the whole idea of a number of his stories, as well as passages, characters from the classics and contemporaries. They used to have a name for it, it was called the renaissance. It is worthwile noting that there has never been a successful court case for plagiarism in advertising in the UK, and that is because, contrary to popular belief, copyright does NOT extend to ideas. Copyright applies to a tangible work, not to the idea behind it, so if you use a similar idea, but execute it in a different way (ie. Not a direct remake), no copyright infringement exists.
This is a brave and interesting idea, Skittles have replaced their entire corporate website with a series of links to various social media sites. The homepage is the twitter search page of everything that people are saying about the brand right at that very moment.
'Products' links to wikipedia, 'media' links to youtube and flickr. 'Friends' is the facebook page and 'contact' links to a contact form on their own site.
Interestingly, 'chatter' is the same as 'home' currently, suggesting that the twitter feed homepage is temporary. Perhaps this is a stunt to get twitter attention? Lord knows it's so hot right now.
A lot is currently being made of how people are hijacking the skittles twitter page to include profanities etc, but this is temporary, and if anyone from the skittles marketing team is reading this, you should tough it out as this approach will probably pay off for you in the long run.
The idea is quite extreme at the moment, but what is good about the
idea is that it is flexible. There are not massive production
implications of changing the flash panel and shifting a few links around. Probably in a week or so you will find a 'proper' homepage going over the top of the site, if only to link to the other environments.
Bravo to whoever sold this in, as it is going to be big.