Brain Buster The Marketeer

Can you skip the chasm?

So yesterday I was saying that I thought the newest Palm hardware was a waste of time. Over on engadget a lot of people were saying the same type of thing. If you don’t have the backstory – they are selling a mini laptop, it connects to the phone and you get web, email and some other programs with the benefit of a big screen and keyboard.

All the card-carrying members of team propeller head took off our taped glasses and sneered at it (myself included). They had an interesting pitch though – “Geekboys, this is not for you, you must have your multimedia laptops, this is for the rest of the world.” I paused for a moment and had a flash of inspiration – you could give this to a salesperson and they would have a phone and access to, all they really need. You could even include audio instructions since they usually don’t read too well (an old joke, not mine by the way).

This got me to thinking further – is it possible to skip the chasm? Crossing the Chasm is standard reading for anyone in the software industry, for the uninitiated – for all tech stuff you usually get acceptance from the geeks if it’s cool but then there’s a period of time where the geeks take it for granted but the rest of the world still hasn’t found out about it or figured it out. If you need more you should really get the book.

My gut is telling me no, it’s not possible. You need the geeks on your side because they are the evangelists, they help you further develop the product for the mainstream audience (basically by making it easier to use and error free). If you don’t get the geeks the product remains relatively unknown and never sees mainstream light of day. I’d be interested if anyone has any examples of skipping the chasm, or opinions as to whether it’s possible or not.

Daily Life Gaming Geek Stuff Graphic Design Productivity Booster

Virtual Yard Sale

The purchase and sale agreement has been signed so it looks like we are off to a new home! I’ve already begun going through stuff to try and ease the move, and I thought it would be fun to throw my own virtual yard sale. Actually the stuff is on eBay, but I thought it would be interesting to see if any readers were interested. If anybody reading this buys any of the stuff I’ll waive the shipping fees.

Three items for sale:

A Netgear Wired 5-Port Switch, if you are going to wire up some machines for gaming or just want more wired ports at your desk (perfect for trade shows booths or conference rooms).

A Linksys Wired Router, same deal as above but with more features (but I’ve had some trouble getting Apple TV and the XBox 360 extender to work with it, LOL).

And the best for last: A Wacom drawing tablet. Drawing with a mouse is like trying to draw with a potato, a must for illustrators.

Enough with the commercial break, a post about marketing in 20 minutes…

Geek Stuff

It’s not about the hardware

Palm announced a new device today. I have been a devoted Palm user since my 1000, back in the day when they were called palmPilots and were owned by US Robotics (there’s some geek street cred for you beyatch).

My only thought on this is that it’s not about the hardware. Instant on is pretty cool but aside from that it’s a bunch of apps that may or may not work with my office docs, etc. If I’m going to the trouble of carrying a big screen the two most important things for me are to be able to handle every file type I might run into in a crunch, like tweaking a brochure design in Adobe, editing an audio file in Goldwave, or yes, just reading email.

The other major point that I didn’t see anything on was media files. If I’m traveling I want to watch movies and listen to podcasts, if the device can’t do that I’m not interested – and be able to download pics from my digital camera’s media card so that I don’t have to carry around more than one card, and can check them out on a bigger screen.

I wish them the best of luck because I am a diehard fan, but I don’t see myself throwing down $500 for it.

Brain Buster Geek Stuff

More Data than Ability

So I’m trying to put together my thoughts about a rampant problem. I keep running into situations where organizations have more data than they can possibly handle, and systems that are built to handle that data, but not the human capital to build and maintain the systems around them.

This started with my Mother’s day rant, where I asked why I couldn’t opt out of mother’s day mailings. You run into this all the time in airlines and financial institutions where you are forced to dial in your account or itinerary information, only having to read it off to a customer service representative later in the call.

Can anyone give me a good reason why I have to choose “English” every time I insert my ATM card into the machine? WTF? They know my address and account number, why not my chosen language?

I was complaining about United Airlines last week until Christopher Penn made me realize that there are far worse problems in air travel. A delayed flight is one thing, losing a passenger entirely is unconscionable.

For my entire career I had waited for tech to catch up to what I was doing, in the space of less than 10 years it’s gone from non-existant, to available, to being drowned in it.

On another note, I am loving Apple TV – digital photos (also buried under their own sheer volume) have been set free on the wide screen. It’s amazing how pictures that look ok at 4×6 look incredible on a big screen.

Daily Life Geek Stuff

Long Weekend and Apple TV

Just relaxing at home for the long weekend and I picked up an Apple TV with some gift cards I had lying around. It’s great just to have access to the iTunes playlists and let it grab photos off of the PC that are normally buried and forgotten. It’s like having a 37in digital picture frame.

Between that and on demand access to Heroes, I’m all set to go.

The latest M Show is up if you want to check out the best business podcast. With that, I am off to bed…

Daily Life Geek Stuff

24 on iTunes Finished, Now Addicted to Heroes


So I just finished the last episode of 24. I’ve been getting them on iTunes and then setting my iPod on the treadmill rack at the gym to make the time go by faster. It’s been almost perfect, all I need is a bigger screen. I’ve got my fingers crossed that there will be a widescreen iPod announced at the developer’s conference next month – what a perfect birthday present for me. I’d get a PSP but having to transcode video is just not worth the time, and I prefer to stay legal.

I thought I’d have one more week of 24 but they did a 2 hour finale, which was very good overall, but I thought the last 10 minutes were a little strange. Hollywood Steve tells me next season is supposed to be a radical departure from everything before this.

Steve Garfield scored some cool info on upcoming series including a new Bionic Woman. As a card-carrying member of the shrine of Steve Austin, you know that I am in.

I’m also addicted to Heroes, having watched the first 6 episodes during my travel last week (what better to do on a plane, especially with the second leg delayed 3 hours). Enough with the guilty pleasure of TV, we’ll have to get back to some marketing tomorrow (or get your Marketing Over Coffee today).

Daily Life SEO and Paid Search

Still off the grid

Home inspection tomorrow so things are still moving. Some quick things you may be interested in:

Google is cracking down on search arbitrage

I was unable to hit the WebInno event yesterday so I’m looking for a good writeup on what I missed.

Some rumors about Google acquiring but I think those are just rumors.

A new Marketing Over Coffee will be out tonight.

Daily Life

Off the Grid

I haven’t posted and in a rare occurance The M Show is a day late. All for good reason – we have another offer in on a house (4th time’s a charm?).

I did get to run the camera through its paces at Hermosa Beach:

Cuervo Girls

(I do have a guy picture over there too…)

Brain Buster SEO and Paid Search

Advanced Kung-Fu Blog Techniques

Eric, Sam and Jason

Eric Schwartzman, Sam Whitmore and Jason Calacanis

Jason Calacanis delivered a great lunch keynote today. I enjoy the mix of straight talk mixed and the understanding of showmanship. I had a brain buster today when everything snapped into focus – he mentioned that you should keep watching his blog for something big regarding the death of SEO. If you read his stuff there’s been a ongoing thread about SEO being legitimate business or just another shady tactic like junk bond arbitrage and tax evasion. So perhaps something big is coming and guess who’s had a corner on the best SEO chatter (Google juice anyone?) for the past 3 months?

Productivity Booster The Marketeer

Google to buy Feedburner?

Dan York passed on an interesting rumor.