Tag Archives: digital Blog

TV’s Changing Landscape

Kevin Spacey recently gave a clear explanation of TV’s changing landscape. The future is user-driven, and the established order doesn’t like it. What Spacey notes is that time, place, and length don’t matter anymore. Users want to control when and how they consume media.

If you are watching a film on your television, is it no longer a film because you’re not watching it in the theater?’ Spacey asked his audience. ‘If you watch a TV show on your iPad is it no longer a TV show? The device and length are irrelevant.’ Labels are useless, the actor told the suits, ‘except perhaps to agents and managers and lawyers who use these labels to conduct business deals. ‘For the kids watching the shows, however, ‘there’s no difference watching Avatar on an iPad or watching YouTube on a TV and watching Game of Thrones on their computer. It’s all content. It’s all story.’

This, of course, runs completely counter to big media’s business model, which is still anchored in the 20th century. As we’ve seen before, tactics always lag technology, and those who adapt the fastest win. That’s the result we’re seeing with Netflix, which is purchasing new seasons of TV shows and releasing them in bulk at a very nice profit. The moral of the story? If people are buying digital devices, they’re going to want, and find, digital content to enjoy on them. The media industry may be digging in its heels, guarding a dated business model, but change happens. Better find a way to make money digitally because that’s where customers are going.

Complete article: http://bit.ly/16Iodur

A New Manufacturing Paradigm

I remember a saying in the 1990s that went something like this: “everything that can be digital will be digital.” Now, almost 20 years later, we can see how much that’s been realized. Products, such as music, movies, and publishing, are now delivered as bits. Many industries have moved processes to digital, including banking, tax reporting, and bill paying. And almost every business has a digital component, whether through web marketing, e-commerce, or just a simple website. Most of these examples deliver bits to screens on electronic devices. In some cases, the final output is printed copy from a digital source. However, what we haven’t seen is printing to 3D space, ie: real-world printing, until now.

The following article briefly surveys a technology called 3D Printing that may revolutionize manufacturing. Imagine designing objects digitally and utilizing machines to render those plans as actual objects. Anything from simple boxes to unibody computer casings to electronic parts to homes and even buildings are possible. Mass quantities or one-offs (aka mass personalization) can all be delivered. Such capability may even reverse the loss of manufacturing to overseas competitors.

… think about what the laser printer originally did for the graphic design profession. Rather than having to rely on a team of production technicians to render the designer’s artwork, suddenly, it was only necessary to hit PRINT, and a camera-ready master would emerge from the printer. Today, it’s possible for a product designer to create an intricate three-dimensional solid model in a CAD system and likewise press PRINT. This time, however, what emerges is not a sheet of paper but a fully-formed 3D object.

If 3D Printing becomes a viable technology, it will eventually impact society, making necessities such as housing, clothing, and efficient transportation much more affordable. If that happens, we may have to shorten that phrase from the ’90s mentioned above to: “everything … will be digital.”

Read full article: http://bit.ly/aMgCui 

Amazon Now Selling More Kindle Books Than All Print Books

This is interesting. Back in the ’90s it was said that “all things that can be digital will be digital,” which makes perfect sense in an Internet world. “Bits” are “weightless” while “atoms” are not. There are few marginal costs in their production, they’re cheap and easy to ship, they can often be sold without the usual intermediaries, and information (text, photos, audio, video, and movies) can easily be converted. It would be the “democratization” of information where anyone could be a publisher, movie producer, or rock star, with direct access to audiences.

And, of course, in a large way, we’ve seen this come to pass, with blogs, YouTube, and social media leading the way. But not without some consternation, eg: Napster, which led to lawsuits against music consumers, the decimation of newspaper revenues, and Hollywood’s foot-dragging as it clings to antiquated business models.

And now we’ve learned that, at least for Amazon’s Kindle, digi-books are outselling paper ones. This should not be surprising as we’ve already seen the same shift from physical products to digital in the music industry. But it’s telling that consumers prefer digital in a growing way across all media. The prophecy is coming to pass.

But also telling is that such conversions are not always consumer-driven. Online banking, digital tax filing, medical records, and other services are also increasing because businesses understand the economies that digital provides. Whether consumers like it or not (think of humanless phone menus and automated customer service: “I’m sorry, I didn’t quite get that …”), we’ll see more of our lives converted to digital. This conversion of daily life is especially true with smartphones connecting almost everyone relatively cheaply.

If you are looking to leverage these advantages for your business, remember to look past the bottom line. Implement digital in ways that benefit, better yet, delight your customers, as Amazon has done with the Kindle. And beware of “economies” at the expense of the customer experience, which is the other side of the digital two-edged sword.

Read full article: http://bit.ly/mCgsDQ

An Interactive World

Functioning interactively, hyper-connected, adapting, changing. An electronic world that has gripped society is here. Don’t lose focus for a minute or you’ll be passed by.

Exciting, challenging, demanding, intriguing. Lots of new ideas to understand, even as this new world is itself being defined and redefined.

Can we grasp technology? Leverage it? Make it pay?

In this space are shared some of the interesting ideas I come across in my regular research, along with some commentary, opinion, and why I think the subject matters.

What matters to you? In this interactive world, we’re all learning, inventing, morphing, sharing. Everyday. Non-stop.

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