Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Landfill Harmonic

This is an amazing social project done by a truly remarkable group of people in Paraguay: An orchestra that plays instruments out of trash. A truly awe inspiring tale of the things that can be done when people band together against adversity and circumstances to create music and an emotional experience for everyone that watches this.

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Monday, December 24, 2012

Mobile Orchestra

This is a true testament to digital agencies, the ones that make and build things be it for their clients or for themselves. Those that go beyond creating web banners and microsites to actually building applications and physical objects; marrying the disciplines of design, sociology, hardware and software engineering.

Credit to AKQA for this great musical mobile orchestra in their collaboration with the Pacific Chamber Symphony to present Carol Of The Bells this Christmas 2012.

You can try it out with your own mobile devices here

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Face Retirement

Merrill Edge (a self directed online investment arm of Merrill Lynch and part of Bank of Amercia) has launched a really interesting online application that shows you how you would look in the future when you get old to prompt people into starting to save for their retirement.

The application is powered by ModiFace (a Virtual Makeover Technology company) that creates a composite photo of your face revealing wrinkles, spots, saggy skin and all the bells and whistles that come with ageing and being old.

The insight for the app came from a study conducted in 2011 where researchers found that we're often reluctant to save for retirement because deep down, we don't identify with the older person we'll one day be. It was nicely encapsulated into the quote "To people estranged from their future selves. saving is like a choice between spending money today or giving it to a stranger years from now".

Test subjects in the study also underwent a virtual reality simulatin that showed them a computer generated vision of themselves at retirement age and then asked them questions about money. Researchers concluded that those who interacted with their virtual future selves exhibited an increase tendenacy to delay gratification (i.e. save and accept later monetary rewards over immediate ones) and save more.


Try it for yourself here

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The Browser You Love To Hate

Love the new marketing campaign for Internet Explorer 10. Just to be clear, I hate IE. It's given me so many problems in the past and I have switched over to Firefox and Chrome and never moved back; Except when required while doing site and app testing. However, the new campaign for IE 10 is absolutely brilliant.

IE was once the dominant browser and has since fallen from grace by being inflexible and overconfident. The campaign is sparked by a very self aware point of view that progress takes time and humility to get back to the top and comebacks come in many shapes and sizes. Just give the new browser a chance, and you'll be convinced.

It starts off with a nice self depreciating TV commercial where an Internet troll follows news of the launch of IE 10 and sprews hate at every chance possible about the new broswer with a vegence. The message at the end is clear, some progress even a little, is good progress.

Users can also go on to The Browser You Loved To Hate to find out more about why and how IE 10 is in fact mounting a serious comeback.

Microsoft has taken the humble approach in this one and it seems to be working quite well. A promise of something great without the flashy display of the browser and obivious and overzealous user testimonials.

#WellPlayed Microsoft. Well Played indeed.

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