Fear as a business model

Last week, Jay Z and some others announced their “rescue” of modern day music consumption. Tidal. Uh yes. Absolutely. Consumers are definitely waiting for another music subscription service. Especially one that serves them the music at truly high bitrates, rapidly consuming everybody’s data plans, against a fee that is twice as much as Spotify, while 90% of the market is consuming over low budget headphones anyway.

And why?

Jay Z and buddies feel they don’t get paid enough by companies like Spotify. Well, it is true of course that Spotify is making a whole lot a money so one could doubt whether their margins are too big. On the other hand: Beyonce bought Jay Z a $50 million private yet for fathers day. That is pretty much the amount that I would spent on a father’s day gift, multiplied by one million.

So they’re using fear as a business model. Their fear, to become less rich, drove them to do this. A marginally better service at a double price. A selfish-millionaire centric business model, not a customer centric one, with bitrate as the only differentiator. Call that innovation.

Presentations – New Style

Quite a lot of people have a love-hate-relationship with Powerpoint or Apple’s equivalent Keynote. And I can understand why. I have seen some truly fascinating slideshows, that really were able to get a message across. But more often, too much information is pasted into one slide, making the slide and its presenter totally irrelevant. Prezi did a good job a few years back by, sort-of, reinventing presentations, but in the end, their product is the same as the two mentioned earlier.

So what makes a good presentation good? It isn’t found in the slides. Nor the technology or the animations, or the lighting settings. It is the presenter that makes a good story. And what makes a good presenter good? His (or her) ability to get a message across.

So if there’s nothing in the technology used, why don’t we start with a blank sheet? Yes, that’s all. No images, no animations, just a blank sheet. Feel free to use a digital sheet, for example Paper or another tool, but start with a blank sheet. Start telling your story and use your iPad as a tool to give some additional explanations if required. not as your guidance if you’ve lost your storyline. You better learn that inside out anyhow.

I have yet to try it myself but am curious for the results.

The Little Nordics

A while ago, I first saw this movie from a fellow named Martijn Doolaard. Every time I watch it again, I enjoy the beauty of both the country and the movie.

 

Voice assistants – How to make them smarter

Nowadays, we live in and age where we’re accompanied by digital voice assistants. I own an iPhone and therefore have access to one of these creatures as well. Mine is known as Siri, speaks Dutch (but in beta) and I try to talk to him (beta stuff only has a male voice) every now and then.

And I have to admit Siri is quite good. There are however two suggestions I would like to see realized here:

  1. Connect voice commands. If I would ask you who the current president of the US is and who he’s married to, you would know that the second question relates to the first. Siri currently doesn’t, while this shouldn’t be that hard. I mean, while I am figuring out what to ask next about Mr. Obama, Siri could take a quick look at it’s internal Wiki page, summing up all the related information.
  2. Select language through voice commands. I frequently communicate in both Dutch and English and would prefer to be able to send out communications in both languages through Siri. However, Siri’s language can only be changed through the settings app. Wouldn’t it be cool to tell Siri: “Please switch to Dutch now”.

So, dear Tim, if you’re reading this, let me know if you think it’s worth trying.

Sometimes…

I am no native speaker either but pretend to speak the anglo language pretty well, which is confirmed by people around me. As such, it frustrates me to hear well-educated people make silly mistakes, such as the one below.

“And you see at the same time …”

Stop. Period. You’re wrong. This is what it is supposed to be:

“And, at the same time, you see …” 

No comment.

Back again

Another blog. Really? In the post-plus-140-characters era?

Yes.

Last year, I concluded that my agenda did not work well with a blog. So I took it down. That was kinda frustrating however, as I still had ideas to write about from time to time. So here it is again. A blog. Don’t expect magic, Don’t expect much. And if you do not, you may find some nice stuff here every now and then.