• Why Are Consumer Electronics Constructed So Cheaply?
    I'm a gadget guy. I love consumer electronics. But there's a critical flaw in the latest generation of devices: poor construction. Many devices I purchased in the late 1990s and early 2000s (and still own, believe it or not) still work like new. But it seems like everything I bought within the last four years has a lifespan of one to three years.
  • Opening Pandora's Box For Internet Brands
    Feels like it was just a few months ago that Pandora wasn't doing so well. They weren't seeing the ad revenue they'd been shooting for and rumors were swirling wildly, but now the rumors are faded and real (good) news is taking its place!
  • Imagine Social Media With Good Content!
    Imagine what social media would be like with all the best content available to be shared, consumed and, yes, monetized, wherever and whenever people want it. It's coming fast, though there's been three major roadblocks to the freeing of great content: 1. How good are the Internet's pipes (bandwidth)? 2. How good is the viewing experience (device)? 3. Can content producers make money from people viewing their content in social media (monetization)?
  • Digital Zeal Gone Bad
    Often, through no fault of its own, digital implementation takes things too far. Even with our best intentions for integrated media usage, concerted social media applications, or transformation of the traditional to digital, it's possible to pour it on too thick.
  • Recession Duress? Work Smarter, Not Harder
    Recessions suck. Layoffs suck. But what about the "lucky ones" who sustain employment amidst downsizing? Life can suck for them, too.
  • Beltway Issues Poised to Hurt Digital Innovators
    As you know, I care a lot about how the digital media and marketing industry is impacted by public policy issues. While most of my attention over the past years was focused on privacy-related issues, it's now becoming clear to me that they are a lot of other issues that we need to be tracking -- even health care.
  • Do You Take Your Job Personally?
    Do you take your job personally? Many people will tell you that your personal and professional lives should be kept apart and that happiness in one should not necessarily be related to the other. But in today's world I find this impossible, because the two are inevitably intertwined.
  • Why Conan O'Brien Can't Go Just Internet -- Yet
    When Conan resurfaces with his new show, many people will be ready to tune in, online and on television. This will present the same opportunity to advertisers that anyone with Conan's talent and audience always presents: the chance to engage an audience with your marketing message. However, even if Conan could get just as many people to engage with marketers through his online content, as might TRULY watch the commercials during a broadcast at the coveted 11:35 p.m. Monday to Friday time slot, he couldn't yet generate enough revenue to sustain the quality of his show.
  • Regarding Magic
    Over the years, I have certainly thought about magic. When confronted by something remarkable, we probably all have, though not often in business -- a realm in which we are conditioned to acknowledge skill, talent, applied intelligence and outright savvy rather than magic. I was struck by this elusive quality over the weekend, when my dad, a long-time Knight Ridder executive, shared news of the death of his friend, respected journalist Steve Lovelady. Echoing the themes my dad noted with the clip he forwarded, this reference to "magic" pervaded the obit...
  • Getting Fit
    If you're reading this column, you probably work most of the day behind a computer, amidst high stress, with your butt glued to a meshy office chair. Which means there's also a good chance you're overweight, or could benefit to lose a few pounds. I'm afraid this describes me -- but I managed to make some changes.
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