Notes From the Desk

All Just Part of the Show

August 23rd, 2010

Early in August KISS introduced a new fan interactive experience to their show. A new program called Liveshare by cooliris. Any fan at a KISS concert carrying a Droid or iPhone can take a photo with the Liveshare app and post it to the jumbotron on stage.

Whether or not you are a fan of KISS musically, this is a brilliant move on their part to include the fans. With this interaction they have created a show that goes past the band and includes thousands in a group experience. Imagine your face or your photo of the band displayed on stage for everyone to see. The KISS Liveshare has given ownership of the show to their fans.

This should be the goal of every online forum on the web. Yet this is the one thing most struggle to achieve. Often forums are over run with spam or over aggressive moderators. Members of a forum need to feel the same ownership over the forum as a KISS fan does at a concert. When this is achieved the over all interaction will grow beyond imagination.

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Cow Dog’s Old Friends Facebook & Twitter

July 27th, 2010

You need more Cow Dog Design LLC (CDD) News in your life? Follow us on Facebook & Twitter to get the direct line to all that is CDD. From daily notes to polls it can be served right up to by following CDD.

   

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Google Image Search Gets a Face Lift

July 26th, 2010

In the modern version of the cola wars, Google Vs. Bing, Google has been making a number of changes to their search engine. Some successful, while others were made hastily to keep up or ahead of their main rival.

This past week it appears they completed major changes to the image search aspect of google.com. I must say I both love and hate the changes at the same time. At first glance the new look is very clean with the image search refinement menu on the left (images size, type & colors in the image), to the right Google eliminated multiple pages of results for one page that has a long vertical scroll, in a “Louvre style” image display. This cluttered image stacked on image style creates a a cluttered look that jars the eyes and makes it hard to view and explore the results.

Don’t get me wrong, Google did good overall with their changes. The image results seem more relevant to the query & I’m a fan of the rollover effect they have employed. When you rollover an image you get a slight zoom with details about the image. This is good because it gives you a slightly clearer image before you commit to clicking and displays only the details to the current image rolled over

The part I’m particularly a fan of is when you click to see a full size image. In the past you had to search the result site for the image Google found. Now when you click to see the full size image, Google will still take you to the result site, but displays the full size image in an Ajax pop up window over top of the website. making it easier to find.

So over all I would have to give Google an A- for their effort. While I find the Image result page crowded & cluttered (kinda the exact opposite of the google mission statement), the important aspects of search refinement, relevant results, & ease of use are more important. I’m sure we will be seeing Bing’s response to Google’s changes shortly. So keep your eyes peeled for them.

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USPS: America’s Lost Love

July 15th, 2010

In a not to distant past the US Postal Service (USPS) was the cats meow. Everything from letters to family, pen pals & bills were sent daily. USPS was so big & popular, they even sponsored a Tour de France winning cycling team. But since this new fad called the internet & email caught on, USPS has been struggling to find stable footing & constantly making, not fully thought out, changes with little success.

Currently USPS is surviving off of SPAM letters & proper etiquette. When it becomes socially acceptable to email wedding invites & thank you cards, people will cancel their mail boxes faster then they are ditching land-lines.

So where to go from here? Cancel Saturday service, rate hike, or private sector? Who knows but there is a lesson here for every business to learn from and prepare for in the digital age. It all goes back to Aesop’s fable of the “Tortoise & the Hare”, where slow & steady wins the race. But in reality the hare kicks the tortoise’s tail often. For those that want it spelled out, USPS is the tortoise & the internet/email is the hare.

I’m not suggesting people go crazy and make ill informed decisions on the internet. Once you post it live on the internet, there is no taking it back, it lives on FOREVER……Mwahahahaahhaha. The trick is to constantly look for that next step/technology and mold it into your companies needs. So remember standing still will leave you like the once mighty USPS, swimming in the middle of the ocean with no clear direction to swim.

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RIP: MTV :: Viva La IMV

July 15th, 2010

Since the mid-late 90’s music artists slowly lost a big promotional tool, MTV, to reality, game, & talk shows. You see when MTV was “Music Television” they would play these 3-5 minute clips called Music Videos. If you fast forward to the new millennium, a prime replacement to MTV has taken over & has no end in site. That replacement is Internet Music Videos (IMV) assisted by sites like vimeo.com & youtube.com. The beauty of these sites and IMV is you don’t need to be KISS or Aerosmith to produce a quality video for the masses. Unlike MTV, the people get to chose what they want to see on the internet. This opened the flood gates for smart/inventive local & indie bands to jump on the scene and make some waves.

The best example of this to date is OK Go‘s “Here it Goes again” video that threw them into the main stream and onto countless TV shows. As OK Go continues in their career they have evolved their videos with the latest release of “End Love”. But with this process OK Go is able to reach millions, where in the old standard of MTV they would have only been aired at 4:00am and faded into obscurity.

Another example of bands utilizing the concept of IMV is Grace Potter & the Nocturnals (GPN). In a lead up to the release of their self titled album, GPN created stripped down performances of their songs with a single camera and no cuts. The release of these IMV’s did more then any interview in a magazine could do, they introduced the world to the new music of GPN for free and created a buzz that otherwise may not of been there.

This concept or formula is evolving and being replicated by many. Even in it’s simplest forms videos on the web are powerful Red Wanting Blue has utilized it to inform their fans of their recent signing with fanatic records and the release of their album “These Magnificent Miles” on a national stage. The key to this is not letting your brain get in the way and finding a solution that works for you.

Flip UltraHD Camcorder + YouTube Membership = Endless Possiblities

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Site Developed by Cow Dog Design LLC Featured

January 21st, 2010

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