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Another post on eReaders…

11.01.2010, No Comments, Uncategorized, by .

Last week, Barnes & Noble announced a color version of their eReader the Nook.   Although B&N has been the leader in bricks & mortar book sales and has driven a lot of innovation in bookselling, they have been behind Amazon regarding eReaders.   But with this move, B&N nook takes the innovation lead over the Kindle.

 

Sure, Amazon reacted that color is not imporatant and that it isn’t that big a deal.

 

Who knows who is correct?   I tend to think that color is a game changer.   Apple opened up the eBook world to an entire new type of book with their iPad.  Why not color?   I feel that Amazon Kindle will counter one day with color.   They say there are no plans to do so.   But then Amazon just announced a ‘lending policy’ that copies B&N’s nook.  When B&N announced it, Amazon was dismissive of the idea.

 

iPad delivers color for reading books.   Now some of the B&N Nooks also will have color.   Smartphones have color screens.

 

Once upon a time, photos were all B&W.    Once upon a time, movies were all B&W.  Once upon a time TV was all B&W.

 

Once upon a time, all eReaders were B&W.

 

Not any longer.

Cheap Sunglasses

10.20.2010, Comments Off on Cheap Sunglasses, Uncategorized, by .

I lost my sunglasses today.   I think I know where but by the time I realized it, it was too late.

 

I stopped buying expensive sunglasses a decade ago.  I buy ‘cheap sunglasses.’

 

Of all the items in the world, designer sunglasses seem to be the most overpriced of all.  People pay $800 for a pair of sunglasses?   Is it a fashion statement?   Does it show you are so shallow that you want to be defined by your over-priced specs?   Or is it a sign of having throw-away cash?   I guess if one has the disposable cash, it is theirs to do what they wish.

 

I was a bit bummed when I realized my glasses fell out of my coat pocket.   I think it was in front of St. Patrick’s.   Oh well.   Afterall they are cheap.

 

I have to get a few new pair of shades tomorrow.

 

…”And go get yourself some cheap sunglasses”  — ZZ Top

 

…”The future’s so bright, I gotta wear shades” —

 

…”I wear my sunglasses at night” —

Kindle

10.08.2010, No Comments, Uncategorized, by .

Amazon is notoriously secretive about how many Kindles they have sold.   A recent analyst projects there will be 5-million sold in 2010; 7.5-million in 2011 and 11.5-million in 2012.  WOW!   It all adds up to almost 25-million Kindles in a few years.   Even if he is way over, conservative estimates have at least 15-million sold.

 

But that is just part of the market.   Kindle has an App for the iPad; the iPhone; the iTouch; Droid phones; Macs and PCs.  So basically anyone will be able to read an eBook through Kindle no matter what device you own.  That comes to hundreds of millions of views.

 

This is not a commercial for Amazon.   But they have made it very easy to read eBooks.  They continue to push publishers to add content.   They keep pushing the price of eReaders down.   The downside?  Kindle is a closed system.  To read books on Kindle, one must buy books on Kindle.  The other systems are open and don’t force a device on the reader.   Will this change?   No one knows, but I am hopeful.

 

Amazon had 93% market share a few years ago.   They essentially created the current eBook market.   They have remained steady in believing in eBooks.   Their share is down to 60-70% (although the market is much greater so their business is healthier).  With increased competition, their share will probably move south of 50%.   At that time, maybe they will open up?

 

But, regardless, it is important to do business with Kindle.  But it is also key to do business with the rest.   It is never good for one company to own the market.  Play with everyone and reap the benefits.

The Rolling Stones

09.29.2010, No Comments, Uncategorized, by .

 

Had a hard time getting started this morning.  So I set my iPod to play some Stones.   I love the blues, rock n roll, English-bent music of Mick and Keith and Charlie + .   My favorite albums come from the late 60s — when Mick Taylor joined the band (Charlie and Bill were on drums and bass).  This was after Brian Jones and before Ronnie Wood joined the band.

I find EXILE ON MAIN STREET, LET IT BLEED and STICKY FINGERS some of the best music ever.   I guess I could extend the late 60s to the early 70s and tap into SOME GIRLS and EMOTIONAL RESCUE.   I love it all.  I do listen to the later music but find myself coming back to these albums over and over.

The Rolling Stones bill themselves as “The World’s Greatest Rock n Roll Band.”   It’s hard to argue with that claim.

They have been together for 50 years.

Some of my favorite songs (in no particular order)

TUMBLING DICE

SWEET VIRGINIA

MIDNIGHT RAMBLER

GIMME SHELTER

LET IT BLEED

YOU CAN’T ALWAYS GET WHAT YOU WANT

BEAST OF BURDEN

DEAD FLOWERS

SYMPATHY FOR THE DEVIL

But I have many, many others I love to listen to.

AL playoffs – 2010

09.25.2010, No Comments, Uncategorized, by .

The American League playoffs are almost here.   There are 8-10 games left but the teams are pretty much decided.  The Rays, Yankees, Twins and Rangers.  An interseting mix for Tampa and Minnesota represent small-market teams, the Rangers a bigger market (but less rabid fans) and of course the biggest of big – New York.   MLB has always been a sport of have and have-nots.   The Yankees have been buying players (they purchased Babe Ruth from a bankrupt Red Sox owner) since the onset of the AL.   On the other hand, the Twins were almost eliminated — given the death sentence — a few years ago by the Commissioner.  Yes, the league actually tried to kill them?   Tampa is the youngest franchise and has had some success.  But their owner announced this week that he may need to dismantle the team because it is too expensive.  How can you even be a fan of the Rays with ownership like that?   Then there are the Rangers.  They were bankrupt earlier this year and had a judge decide their fate.   All I do know is HOF pitcher Nolan Ryan is somehow involved and former prez GWBush was a part owner many years ago.

So what is the point?  

Baseball is like life.

Baseball is not fair.

Life is not fair.

But even with the odds against you — you can still make the playoffs.

Loading…

09.06.2010, No Comments, Uncategorized, by .

I love my iPhone.  I enjoy reading eBooks.   But I hate it when the ‘Loading…” screen comes up.  I never wait for my pBooks to “Load.”  But there are obviously many weaknesses of each format (and of course many advantadges).   I read on both formats.   This is why it is important to provide content in the format readers want to consume.

So, I hope publishers will all jump in and convert their physical assets to eBooks and digital content.   A lot of new readers can be found and authors re-discovered.   Bring on the eBooks…. but never give up on the physical ones.

“Loading…”   Could you add up all the seconds waiting?   Over a lifetime, it could be many, many days or even years.

Tumblr and Foursquare

08.30.2010, No Comments, Uncategorized, by .

 

Twitter and Facebook get all the press.  But there are hundreds of social network tools and sites available.  I use both Facebook and Twitter but also am a fan of Tumblr and Foursquare. 

Tumblr is a blend between Twitter and a Blog.  Many use it as a blog.  I prefer it for photographs and art.   It is much more visual than Twitter and the posts mean more.  A post on Twitter is for a fleeting moment — it is disposable.  But a post on Tumblr is more meaty.

Tumblr just hit 1,000,000,000 posts.

Foursquare is a location tracking device.  Basically the user ‘checks in’ at every location they visit.  If they visit enough, the user can become the mayor of the place.  It’s fun but also a bit stalkeresque.  I do see how business can use it to promote.   For example, I was in Starbucks the other day.  I went to my Foursquare account and checked in.   Then I looked at the nearby stores.  The Gap was about three stores away and had a special 30% off for Foursquare users.  I went in and shopped.  Location-based sites have just started to blossom.

Foursquare just hit their 3,000,000 user.

Web-based marketing, social networking, living on the web — it is all growing.  It is fundamentally changing the way we live.   Embrace it for it will not be going away…. ever.

Enjoy.

Playground

08.23.2010, No Comments, Uncategorized, by .

 

Take a break.  Go to the playground.  Relax.   Rechage.  Return.   It’s always important to let your brain rest and just wander.

Experiment…

08.19.2010, No Comments, Uncategorized, by .

The media world is going through dramatic changes.   Newspapers, magazines, TV shows, movies, books, music etc are all going digital.  The ways to market these items are also going through revolutionary times.   So, experiement.  Try it.  Get your feet wet and jump in.   The world is changing at a rapid rate.   

Think back — enter the time machine (I will admit we watched THE HOT TUB TIME MACHINE last night) and go back….   How different was everything just last year?  Three years ago?  Five years ago?   10 years ago was a lifetime!

Other movies about time travel:

  • BACK TO THE FUTURE (and the two sequels)
  • STAR TREK XI (and numerous tv episodes)
  • THE TIME MACHINE (the original movie better, the book even better than that)
  • BIG, 18 AGAIN, FREAKY FRIDAY (ok a bit off subject, but it is still a character reliving part of their life)
  • THE TERMINATOR (the first movie was amazing, the others fair)

But back to my original point.   Time flies past and before you know it, the game is over.   So experiment now.  Try it.  Join in.  Do it.   And then correct what needs to be fixed — and do it again.

“Back Jack, Do it Again…”

Friday the 13th

08.13.2010, No Comments, Uncategorized, by .

I am not a superstitious person.  I do believe in fate, karma and luck though.  But I believe each person can control and create one’s path.  I am not a fan of people just throwing up their arms and saying it “isn’t my fault’, it must be xxxxxxx.   That just seems like an excuse.  Sure some of the time you can’t change the outcome.  But you do have an influence.   People create good karma.  People make their own luck.  People control more than they believe.

Friday the 13th.  I started to research the origins and such of this phobia.  But quickly got tired of it.  I just am not interested in how it got started but that some people get paralyzed by it.   The number 13 just seems to freak out many people. 

I used to travel a lot.  My schedule would change at a moment’s notice and I would have to make new reservations.  I ended up in a lot of ROW 13 seats on planes because I would fly stand-by.  It’s funny, even people who are not afraid of 13, probably would not select that row number on a plane.   Many hotels don’t even have a 13th floor.  But I have also found that if they do, it is usually the last to fill up.  

Triskaidekaphobia is the fear of the number 13.  

Many years ago, I was on a flight out of Atlanta.  It was on Eastern Airlines.  Eastern is long gone and this was near the end of their existence.  It was Friday the 13th.  I was in row 13.  The weather was horrible and lightening lit up the skies.  I was reading my USA TODAY and came across an article about the problems Eastern was having with their mechanics and that many safety rules were being overlooked.  Basically there was not enough people to do all the checks required and keep the planes running on schedule.   As I was reading the piece, BOOM, the plane was hit by lightening and we dropped a few thousand feet.  I remember clearly being a few inches above my seat.  My stomach was in my throat.   Passengers were screaming.   Probably the scariest flight I have ever been on.   But we made it OK and landed safely.   I figure if I made it through that, then the number 13 would be OK with me.