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Beatquake: the Music Listening Activity across Facebook over 90 days

Posted by on May 28, 2014 in Blog, Data Visualization | Comments Off on Beatquake: the Music Listening Activity across Facebook over 90 days

Mapping Music on Facebook [] by Stamen Design for Facebook shows the dynamic characteristics of the typical listening activity across Facebook.

Inspired by the dynamic movement of a graphic equalizer, Beatquake maps the popularity of the top three most popular songs in the U.S., each day over the course of 90 days, by way of vertically moving particles.

Colored layers, each representing one song, rise and fall over geographic locations to correspond with the number of plays in that area. The texture of the map is driven by BPMs (beats per minute), and thus changes as one song overtakes another in popularity.


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Will “Daily Deals” Save Newspapers?

Posted by on Jan 11, 2014 in Blog, Media and Markets | Comments Off on Will “Daily Deals” Save Newspapers?

dailydeals?Groupon is Hastening the Demise of the Newspaper Industry,? wrote a trade publication in April 2011.?? However,?? some newspapers are betting that ?daily deal? offerings could reinvigorate the industry.?? Newspapers are turning to startups such as?? Shoutback and Nimble Commerce?? and others offering consulting and white-label systems to power deal mechanisms. And newspapers have other things many other Groupon clones don?t ? large local audiences that are still used to turning to newspapers for coupons,? and a sales force with established local relationships.

Reportedly,?? The Boston Globe is offering its own? Boston Deals promo after? trying a partnership? with BuyWithMe last year (and SCVNGR, also last year)? as it? moves to separate? its online content from a potentially more lucrative e-commerce business.??? Boston Phoenix? offers? deals,? Star Tribune? in the Twin Cities offers STeals.

The struggle newspapers have had in recent years to make money from their content is obvious to all.?? Paywalls,???? apps, etc., have all been attempted.

But newspapers have failed to leverage the single most important advantage they have over the emerging media types:???? local audiences and local sales relationships.?? An intelligent ?Daily Deals? offering could be the key.???? The Globe, Phoenix and Star Tribune have each come out with their own versions of this play. Or they could aggregate local deals from Groupon and its numerous clones, Yipit-style.?? ((These last observations are from MIT?s Advertising Lab?s excellent blog.)

Has any newspaper actually tried to recapture the classifieds business from Craiglist????? Newspapers ought to be able to offer online classifieds with more power and usability than the Craigslist version, with a little planning and proper research.

In the past year I?ve spent a lot of time talking to local businesses in southern California and trying to understand their experience with the ?Groupon? concept, which many have tried and abandoned.?? The reason??? Yes,?? ?daily deal? promos bring business in the door,?? but sporadically and often at a loss to the retailer.?? Local businesses have not figured out how to capture the Daily Deals crowd and turn them into reliable repeat customers, and that is something that newspapers will need to consider if they plan on competing in this deal space.?? Newspapers could step into this void and help local businesses profit from Daily Deals, thereby strengthening their own brands and relationships.

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YouTube Trends Map: Explore the Most Popular Videos by Location

Posted by on May 9, 2013 in Blog, Data Visualization | Comments Off on YouTube Trends Map: Explore the Most Popular Videos by Location

The YouTube Trends Map [] is a visualization of the most shared and viewed videos in various regions across the United States over the last 12 to 24 hours. It accompanies the more analytical Trends Dashboard to provide a full overview of the the rising videos and trends on YouTube in terms of actual views or shares, filtered by geographical location, gender or age of the viewers.

The demographic information of viewers is solely based on the information reported by registered, logged-in users in their YouTube account profiles. Next to the geographical map, the Trends Map also include a series of horizontal bar graphs, each representing a graphical summary of the top videos for a different demographic. Within each bar, a video is represented by a colorful segment, the colors are drawn from the video’s thumbnail. The width of a video’s segment reflects the number of regions on the map where the video is #1.

See also:
. YouTube View Tracking Data Visualization
. YouTube Swarm Related Videos

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Malls tracking shoppers via cellphone signal

Posted by on Apr 9, 2012 in Blog, Technology and Privacy | Comments Off on Malls tracking shoppers via cellphone signal

British company Path Intelligence is testing a shopper tracking system called Footpath in a southern California shopping mall. The technology picks up the unique IDs in shopper’s cell phones in order to study their movements through stores and throughout the mall.

Describing the product: “Path Intelligence detects each shopper carrying a phone that enters the mall. It identifies how long they stay, which shops they visit, whether or not they have visited before and how they travel around the mall during their trip. Path Intelligence enables data-driven analysis of a mall, the retail tenancy mix, the impact of marketing events and much more. Path Intelligence specialises in digitising real-world behaviour to enable you to recognise profitable opportunities.”

Used during the holiday shopping season in late 2011 in the Promenade Mall in Temecula, California (North and inland from San Diego), the system is said to already be in use in some European and Australian shopping centers. It’s unclear if shoppers are alerted in any way about the fact that they will be tracked via their cellphone ID, or how the data collected will be used. While retailers have long collected whatever information they can about shopper behavior, including how consumers tend to move about their stores, this is the first time they are able to uniquely identify a shopper and passively track return visits.

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H&M and computer-generated catalog models

Posted by on Mar 8, 2012 in Blog, Media and Markets | Comments Off on H&M and computer-generated catalog models

Even fashion models are being disintermediated.? Some catalogs trade lavish description for models (notably,? J. Peterman) while others keep the idea of human models,? but save on the pesky expense of photo shoots by computer-generating the women.? At H&M,? skin, hair and eye color are changed with the click of a mouse to give the impression of many different models.

Market research has long shown that people look first and longest at other people.? In catalog marketing,? the exact items in the colors worn by the model nearly always sell most.? Will we continue to be as fascinated by facsimile humans as we are by each other?

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Speech intention can be decoded from brainwaves

Posted by on Feb 2, 2012 in Blog, Data Visualization, Emerging Science and Technology, Technology and Privacy | Comments Off on Speech intention can be decoded from brainwaves

UC Berkeley scientists have demonstrated a method to reconstruct words that a person may be thinking, by examining brainwaves using fMRI. The technique reported in PLoS Biology relies on gathering electrical signals directly from patients’ brains, via implanted electrodes. Computer models reconstructed words/sounds from the signal patterns.

Although the possible uses include helping comatose, locked-in patients, or the speech-impaired to communicate, concerns have been raised that the method could be used for interrogation. fMRI has already been used by federal law enforcement agencies to detect signs of deception in detained suspects.

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Physibles and the future of brands

Posted by on Feb 1, 2012 in Blog, Data Visualization, Emerging Science and Technology, Media and Markets | Comments Off on Physibles and the future of brands

Brands have a psychological reality in that they provide differentiation for goods that might otherwise be seen as interchangeable commodities.? I give you vodka, salt, and baking soda, as pertinent examples.

The advent of 3-D printers in recent years, though,? introduces a possibility that branded goods may have less utility in the future.? The Pirate Bay,? already a source of downloadable content of all types (some of it probably of dubious legality) has created a new category of downloadable content containing the code for producing items on 3-D printers.? Once goods become “content” and can be produced by anyone,? what happens to brands? The ability to easily turn digital content into a physical object changes the marketing premise. Nicknamed “physibles”? over at the Pirate Bay,? these digital blueprints lead the way to a nearby future in which “…you will print your spare parts for your vehicles. You will download your sneakers within 20 years.”

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