Angela Natividad's Live & Uncensored!

31 August 2010

All the French Tech News That's Fit to Print

Hi, honey, I'm home! And with the changing leaves come a new project.

Frenchweb, which covers news in tech among French startups, has launched an English site, Frenchweb News (@FrenchwebNews). I'll be helping get it on its feet, which means you - anglo compatriot! - can expect a couple of articles summarizing news in French tech for that week, coverage of industry conferences, and video interviews in native tongue.

Why read Frenchweb News? I can think of a few reasons:
  1. You want to penetrate the European market, so you'll need a sense of the atmosphere and potentially useful partners.
  2. You're looking for promising French firms to invest in and scale.
  3. You want to broaden your sense of trends that may go global - and not just from home turf.
When I arrived in France a year and a half ago, I wanted to help make European creative more accessible to the American agency audience. To varying degrees I'm still doing that, and the vice versa, over at Culture Buzz, which also has a healthy EU readership.

But I also discovered something else.

14 August 2010

This is an Out of Office Notice.

One of the really nice things about moving to France is the adamant vacation culture. And it's been impressed upon me that seizing your rightful time to disconnect really is something that should be prioritized, no matter how important all the other stuff seems to be. You get human contact, you experience nature, you're reminded of what is important and what must be protected.

So I'm off for the next two weeks. (Where? Roughly here.) Will be back, all fresh and full of delight, around the 29th. Catch you guys then. I swear I'm gonna try not to tweet.

13 August 2010

Paul Graham on the Heart of Yahoo's Problem

There's not much we can learn from Yahoo's first fatal flaw. It's probably too much to hope any company could avoid being damaged by depending on a bogus source of revenue. But startups can learn an important lesson from the second one. In the software business, you can't afford not to have a hacker-centric culture.

(Have you ever read Graham's Hackers and Painters? It's really good. It'll validate your unhappy feelings about high school ... and make you all obsessed with Lisp.)

12 August 2010

Brandon Schaeffer's Movie Posters

There’s something to be said about distilling a central theme or idea of a film down to it’s core and translating it into a simple, iconic image. It’s a nice exercise that shows just how limitation can breed possibility and eliminate distraction: by setting yourself a series of self-imposed obstructions, your focus becomes more refined, and communication becomes key.
- Brandon Schaeffer

See more of Brandon's movie posters, as well as a few more of his thoughts, at Escape into Life. (Thanks for the tip, Candace!)

11 August 2010

Oh-Ho! McD's Can Be Funny.

Clicky-clicky on the link to play with the banner that lets you improve it. Disclaimer: may not improve actual experience of hamburger.


Dry Erase Quitter a Hoax, and Maybe a Lesson

This may be fiction after all, but it's springboarded aspiring actress Elyse Porterfield to internet infamy and validated the ability of brothers John and Leo Resig to "create" a viral. More than once.*

AdVerve Episode 43: Viralosity

Play the show now.

Everything you wanted to know about "virals." Josh Warner of seeding firm Feed Company joins us to talk about why a cool video isn’t enough to guarantee viralosity. You thinking backflipping into jeans and catching Ray-Bans with your face is enough? It takes magic. Or a really good integrated marketing plan. One of those.

10 August 2010

How to Burn - Well, Blowtorch - a Bridge ... and Still Look Fresh to the Internettarati.

...You'll need a dry erase board and SOME ONLINE WONDERSNAPS.

Via @zeldman. Oh, update: this whole thing could just be a prank on the internet (like, seriously, AT LARGE) by two asshats. Their big reveal on the identity of dry erase girl is tomorrow ... don't expect it to be anything more interesting than the quitting story in photo format.

Two commenters worth noting in the Gawker story:
You know, at this point, I don't really care if these kinds of stories are real or fake. - SharpShinyClaws

The most interesting thing about this story besides the fact that it went viral in a big way, is the fact that maybe we're entering a new age where the truth doesn't matter as long as it relates to our lives and is funny. I've worked with guys such as her boss who played about the same percentage of Farmville. - keyboardcat
Some thinking food. Don't leap to any extremes on the great grand meaning of it all, at least not yet ... just let it simmer for awhile.

AdVerve Newsy Bait: Tips on Pitch Protection

You're a small agency or a freelancer. You get invited to a pitch for a great potential client. You make your pitch; things went well but ultimately you don't get the business. Yet, six months later you realize the client is basically using your idea in its new campaign...

The Wheels of Capitalismare relentless in their turning, and if somebody - say, a big corporation with many faces to hide behind - can snatch something out from under you without paying, they're going to. That's the facts of life, and that's why learning how to cover your ass is important.

One of the most overlooked ways to cover the aforementioned extremity is pitch protection. It's easiest to forget when you're just starting out, and eager for an ear (any ear!).

In AdVerve's latest newsletter, ad/marketing law attorney Michael McSunas (@adlawguy) of Chambliss, Bahner & Stophel, PC gives you three ways of ensuring your idea pram doesn't get jacked in the pitch room. Give it a read. It's under the section labeled, "Hey, Ad Law Guy!"

06 August 2010

First Case of Fan Hysteria?

Decidedly hot pianist.

Lisztomania. (n)
1. Lisztomania or Liszt fever is a term used to describe the intense fan frenzy directed toward Franz Liszt during his performances. This frenzy first occurred in Berlin in 1841 and was later coined by Heinrich Heine in a feuilleton he wrote on April 25, 1844, discussing the 1844 Parisian concert season.
- Wikipedia

05 August 2010

A Really Friendly 404 Error

It's for Blippy.

In the early 2000s I saw a great 404. You'd go to the site and it was just generic code that reported a 404 error. Then, all of a sudden, the code apologized.

I waited, perplexed. Basically the code started talking to itself, having a kind of Courier-enhanced nervous breakdown because I couldn't answer back, and it was aware, and it was also aware it wasn't providing whatever it is I thought I wanted. The code felt inadequate and defensive.

04 August 2010

AdVerve Episode 42: Get Rich Blogging!

Play the show now.

What makes a good ad writer, or for that matter a good ad creative? David Burn of AdPulp fame joins us for riffs on why we’re all broke bloggers. That’s okay, we still have our pride (RIGHT?). Speaking of rig... writing, we ponder why good writin’ is so hard to find and why the Huff Post sucks.

Next stop: Detroit as we jump on car ads. Hey, don’t blame us—they came up with them. Then we question what it takes to sell out these days. Free pizza? $5 million dollars? A hug? Choices, choices.

That’s a lot of excitement for one show—you may need a nap.

Subscribe via Bill Green and Angela Natividad - AdVerve - AdVerve

02 August 2010

Fuck-You Bookshelf

I was sitting around adding things to Shelfari when it occurred to me, like it often does, how funny it is I still use it. The moment when Shelfari was a promising phenomenon is past; it's doing very little now. And while speed and searches for foreign titles have improved a lot, something about it still rings hilariously low-fi, like being in a town where the pop music is from two years ago.

But I like being able to chart the progression of my life with digital spines, watching the pixel-wood shelf fill with colours, ideas and gifts that finally got read. It's the cartography of a mind that zigzags, occasionally descending upon long-forgotten threads of obsession: a miracle of human consistency.

Someday when Shelfari is able to manipulate data in ways that tell you interesting stories about yourself, your loves and your subconscious thoughts, I'll be happy I packed all this work into it, and in proper order, too.