Mentos & Diet Coke World Record Broken Again

The Guinness World Record for Mentos and Diet Coke has been broken yet again, this time by the Tour College of Changchun University in China. The previous record was set by Turbia University for 1911 fountains. The new record was set with 2175 fountains.

“We ordered 2,450 packs of sweets from a local supermarket, and the day before the event, we had to unwrap them all, put them on skewers and then wrap them again to stop them melting in the heat.”


Super Mario Crossover

Have you ever wanted to run your favorite old-school Nintendo characters through the original Super Mario Brothers? Well wait no more, you now can with Super Mario Crossover. You have a choice of Mario, Link from Zelda, Bill R. (didn’t know that was his name) from Contra, Simon from Castelvania, Mega Man or Samus from Metroid. The great thing about using these other characters, is you get to use their own weapons instead of just jumping on things with Mario. The author of the game says:

This is my first game, and I have worked on it for over a year. It has been a long journey, but I think you will see that all of my effort has paid off. I have recreated the entire game of Super Mario Bros, but now you can play as different characters. Each character plays just like they do in their original games with a few modifications to make the experience better.

This is my tribute to classic NES games, and anyone who grew up playing Nintendo should enjoy it. Now please enjoy the hell out of this game and experience Super Mario Bros in a whole new way!

And yes, I know that controlling Simon Belmont in the air isn’t easy, but that’s what makes him special. And he can double jump to help you control it a bit more. 😉

I highly recommend playing this with a gamepad if you have one, but you can still enjoy it with a keyboard.

Go take it for a spin (, it’s fun to play an old favorite game from a different perspective.

David After Dentist: Family Video to Viral Sensation

Tuesday, March 16, 2010
Presenter: David DeVore – David After Dentist

Description: What motivated our family to post the first “David After Dentist” video. What was our reaction to the video going viral — and why we decided to embrace the massive popularity. How David has reacted to all the attention and how we have tried to control his exposure. The negative aspects and how we chose to handle it. Learn all this and more at this fun-filled session!

The video has been viewed over 54 million times today.
YouTube said that this was the 2nd most viewed video after Susan Boyle.
On the Tosh.0 show

How did this happen?

  • They did it because David’s mom couldn’t be there. Dad stays at home and had to take David to the dentist.
  • David would get very nervous about the dentist (7yrs old).
  • Decided to use flip cam to show David his nervousness was worse than the actual event, and to show Mom. The plan was to record the whole day.
  • It was originally shown to just family and friends (email or at home).
  • Got into Facebook later, and posted to wall. FB friends really liked it.
  • Feb, ’09 it got posted to Youtube to make it easier since other’s wanted to see it. It was made public.
  • David was asked if he was OK with it being posted for public view, and he was OK with it.
  • The night it was posted it had 10k views… shocked.
  • Radio shows picked up on it the following Monday morning. They did a lot of radio interviews. They started pulling it up on YouTube after hearing on radio. The following day it was up to 3 million views.

Were we OK with this many people seeing it?

  • Are we OK with this? Was David OK with it?
  • We’ll make a family adventure out of this and see what happens.
  • Nothing has happened that the family hasn’t been comfortable with.

Jimmy Kimmel – Tosh.0 – Other features

  • ABC/Disney wouldn’t allow Jimmy Kimmel to use it because of the subject matter.
  • The family was able to go out and warm up the audience even though they couldn’t be on the show.
  • Were able to go to Disney World and get a photo with Dentist Mickey and Minnie
  • Went on Tosh.0, and did a portion of that show.
  • Super Bowl Commercial – hired an actor to recreate video with Beyonce.



  • People thought dad drugged David, or the car was moving.
  • Chicago Sun Times wrote a scathing article about the video – her daughter showed the author the video.
  • The popularity of the video jumped after the article (Today Show, Tyra Banks, Bill Oreily)
  • Took off outside the US as well.
  • David has been protected from much of it. The TV was turned off. An awards show wanted to use part of it, but they turned it down.
  • David Loves In-N-Out Burger!!! (smart kid!)

Monetization = Paying for College

  • Maybe they can buy a bike or video games, and it grew.
  • Maybe they can pay for college or even the other children.
  • That would be the best thing to get out of it.
  • They’ve been able to do some charitable things, and show David about doing good things.
  • Majority of the money is from the YouTube partner program (ad share). Sometimes there will be a sponsored ad on another page.
  • Visio commercial licensed the video.
  • They’ve turned several down, and some companies have also turned down using it.
  • Europe and Australia have used the video for several shows (license fee).
  • Doctors and Dentists have approached as a funny opening, or also as part of an education program showing effects of anesthesia. Harvard used it in some current events class.
  • Licensing was a challenge (legal documents) – Hollywood is used to paying very little money with very strict legal requirements. America’s Funniest Videos owns the video forever whether they use it or not.

Family Business

  • Tshirt and promotional material is all done at home.
  • New logo created by Genine Shafer
  • Brand new website went live last night ( – over 100,000 new video views a day.

“It’s just really cool to be a part of something like this. The positive comments from people are great.”


  • What was the first trip back to the dentist like?
    The surgeon that did it didn’t want to have anything to do with it. The regular dentist loves it, and has been very nice about the whole thing.
  • How

Cracking the Books ‘ User-Generated Content in Education

Tuesday, March 16, 2010
Clyde Boyer – Trinity Education Group
Ron Reed – RL Reed Consulting
Anita Givens – Texas Education Agency
Margarita Pinkos – MPinkos Education Consultants

"Age considers; youth ventures." This aphorism has never seemed more real than in a typical U.S. public school classroom: the students are operating on several levels simultaneously in media-saturated environments, while classroom teachers and publishers all seem to be standing on the sidelines, trying to catch up.

Canon YouTube Video put together by a student in Korea. Hundreds of people have learned to play this song just by this video. This is a very atypical learning (informal) learning environment.

Type 3 words into YouTube for what you’re trying to accomplish. Search for "Graphinc Linear Equations." Students post comments thanking the poster for putting the information online. Same "think you" comments from GED test-taker as well as an honors math student.

Education Trends:

  • Mobility
  • User Created Content
  • Learning Communities (youtube, facebook, social netoworking"

Culture eats strategy every day of the week.
What is the culture of these user-created learning content?

Vinton Cerf was the hero of a dark world (father of the internet)

  • All these computers in the world, but they can talk now!
  • Learning: Change = opportunity

Connections System from Rice University (

  • CMS for educational content
  • Repository of that educational content
  • Spreads the content in various different ways (online, mobile, hard copy textbook).
  • Over 15,000 modules woven into nearly 1000 collections
  • Everything is modularized for repurpose if needed, update a module at a time, not the entire book.
  • Openness – everyone can create content! Unfortunately not everything is wonderful because of this. How do you maintain quality? Lenses.
  • Lenses – allowing for the good quality people to endorse good high-quality content.
  • Frictionless Remixing – you can put in new stuff whenever you want or need (xml and OAI). Everything is Creative Commons based licensed.
  • Customization – lightweight branding vs. full-scale branding in your own window. Zoning – community can rope off areas (k-12 doesn’t need to see medical content). Enterprise Rhaptos – states can run their own version of the software.
  • Textbooks are still the #1 way of learning in the US. Technology isn’t always available to move away from that.

Ning Network (

  • Build your own social network around whatever areas you need.
  • Over 1,400 educators are sharing information and practice in this network. "You met each other once at this event, come back and share more."
  • Share what you’re doing in the classroom with other teachers.
  • Mentoring happening, Find out what works and doesn’t work.
  • No course management system from Ning, so the system is still evolving.

Second Life

  • Set up a virtual island in Second Life.
  • For teaching ready to be on the cutting edge, this works really well.
  • It’s like a webinar with an avatar.


  • A design asks questions, "what problem are we solving?"
  • What are we solving with open source textbooks? What do textbooks solve?
    It’s a pathway to literacy.
  • The most telling thing we’re solving with open source textbooks is cost. States don’t have a lot of money right now. Many changes are, and always will be driven by cost.
  • Not only is the cost lower for these textbooks, but many times the quality is higher.
  • Challenges: How do you get textbooks? Vetting sometimes lowers the quality of textbooks. Looking at this… do we even need textbooks?
  • What if we allow students and learning groups to define their own resources? Kids can structure their own resources.
  • Textbooks are written for the classroom (one single source) and NOT for students. A single student will have issues accessing that only source.
  • Students will probably figure things out before we (educators) do.

What states are doing the best job leveraging the best learner created content?

  • Texas is going a pretty good job. There is an open-access education initiative that puts Texas in the forefront because it allows open content to be used as the primary text. California allows it to be used, but only as a supporting text.
  • Open texts are being taken on world-wide – China, Brazil. There are many forces against it in the US.
  • The access to technology in large enough numbers may be limiting this too.

What’s being done to incent people to contribute

  • Give teachers professional visibility (teachers are busy).
  • Add e-commerce system to the system, and add some sort of payment. Trade funds for creation and/or use. What about .99 for a lesson plan (ala Apple)?
  • If you publish in an open setting, you’re more likely to get it used world-wide – tenure calls for this.

Mobile Content is Social

Tuesday, March 16, 2010
Tom Watson – Facebook Inc
Justin Shaffer – Hot Potato Media Inc
Michael Sharon – Facebook Inc

This whirlwind tour through various interaction models, content strategies, use cases and interface tweaks will be peppered with anecdotes, secrets and tips to help you create addictive social experiences on mobile. You’ll hear from Michael Sharon and Tom Watson of Facebook, and Justin Shaffer of Hot Potato.

One theme has changed mobile content over the last few years

  • Touch – changed the game.
    1.) size – bigger is better, the keyboard/buttons are gone
    2.) intimacy – you can play with this big touch screen and just tap to interact just by using our fingers.
    3.) control – we’re good at using our fingers to interact with things
  • Speed
    1.) hardware – the amazing advances recently in hardware.
    2.) software – you can get new apps, you can put stuff in the clouds
    3.) perception of speed – software taking advantage of hardware.
  • Cheating
    the network cloud isn’t as fast as it should be. New API’s and dev techniques make the device feel more responsive.

Is Mobile Content More Social?

  • Mobile content isn’t inherently social (you stand by yourself and check your phone).
  • Report: "90% of waking hours spend staring at glowing rectangles." -the onion

What does it mean to be social?

  • You want to talk/interact… people to see your stuff.

How do you facilitate this?

  • Friends
    Include your friends in your device (facebook mobile site). Facebook defaulted the view to order by recent activity. You don’t have to search for a way to be social.

    Address/Contact list in your mobile device: It’s not very social – awkward to add/edit in your device. Create a pure managed address book. Blackberry pulled in facebook info to the address book. Palm Pre created the unified address book by pulling all this contact information together. iPhone syncs photo/phonebook onto phone from Facebook.

    Doodle Jump uses Facebook Connect to provide a social graph/connections into any applications.

  • Notifications
    Active notifications (pay attention to now) or Passive (I’m interested in seeing what has been updated.
  • Sharing
    Photos are a big key to sharing (Facebook). Make it as easy as possible to get a photo into the cloud and tag/describe, making it even more social. Facebook app uses the type-ahead for tagging, making the barrier even smaller to get info in as quickly as possible.
  • Serendipity
    Having a connected device with you al the time, you can post different types of content as well as geographic information. You can see what is nearby your current position (Gowalla & 4Square).
  • Discovery
    You can get a different context for different places and times. Do I want to communicate or just see what people are saying? You can filter a larger audience and get information that is relevant to you.

    Facebook news feed exposes the popular things, and not everything, or just your own things.

  • Control
    Gowalla, Hot Potato, 4Square: all of these show location content. They all allow you to post to twitter and facebook on top of the individual app posting. The user can control where they want that information to go (internal or external). You can/should have control to where, but also the ability to remove things.
  • Intent
    Interfaces should be designed in such a way to illicit the response you’re looking for. Quora mobile interface has a bigger check box for mobile (finger click).
  • Feedback
    The link feedback from Facebook makes you feel good when other people comment/link what you post. It makes you come back and post more. It’s a circle that draws you back in and you provide info, and then get feedback, it encourages you to post again. It’s powerful to provide feedback to your users and let them know what is going on.

    4Square badges encourage you to continue using with game mechanics. You want to compete with friends and get more badges.

Web Video Thunderdome: Branded vs Unbranded, You Decide

Tuesday, March 16, 2010
Mike Arauz – Undercurrent
Bud Caddell – Undercurrents

Does your branded web video pass the "I’d rather be watching porn/kittens" test? Looking at the most viewed branded and unbranded web videos of the past 6 months, and the key metrics behind them, our audience will vote to decide which web videos reign supreme. Trophies included!

Deathmatch! (voting on the best in categories below)

  • Brands love super bowl-sized audiences.
  • Brands have come a long way this past year – many of the most popular videos on the web are actual brand videos.
  • There have been a lot of lessons learned (by brands) in making web videos.
  • 141 Millions watched web videos in Feb, 2010 – a huge audience watching web videos!
  • 427 million hours of videos watched on the web in Feb, 2010.
  • Just because you put a video on the ‘net, it doesn’t mean a lot of people will watch it.
  • "Ah-ha we need to make viral videos!"
  • Pizza Hut Fail (they looked bad)
  • Brands failed to understand that this is OUR internet.
  • The web wasn’t built with commercial breaks. In fact, it wasn’t built for advertisers at all.
  • This is your internet, and everyone gets a vote.
  • Does this ideas pass the "I’d rather be looking at pictures of kittens" test?
  • Does this idea pass the "I’d rather be watching porn" test?
  • Everything on the internet is just a click away – videos need to hold you because it’s so easy to go to something else (better).

Best Spokesman

  • Gingers do Have Souls (Unbranded)
    This is what people use YouTube for – a guy talking to the camera saying what he thinks. HUGE number of comments. Other videos were made, he called on the YouTube community (with red hair) to respond.
  • The Man Your Man Could Smel Like (Branded) Winner!
    Just a commercial, really really well done.
  • LESSON: Be Remarkable. If you’re going to do something, do it really well.

Cute Kid Tricks

  • I’m Yours (Ukulele Kid) (Unbranded) Winner!
    Many tweets with organanic natural attention.
  • Evian Roller Babies (Branded)
  • LESSON: Play on past successes – based on the first internet meme, the dancy baby. They looked at what they could remix. Internet fame is a social phenomenon, not a magic trick. Stop using "VIRAL video!" Viral implies there is something in the video itself that will spread on its own. You can’t Make it viral.
    Why do we share? 1. Strengthen my bond. 2. Define our collective identy. 3. Give me status.

Instant Smiles

  • Surprised Little Kitten (Unbranded)
    Very re-watchable (only 17 sec long). Design your content to be rewatchable.
  • Volkswagen Piano Staircase (Branded) Winner!
  • Use the web to tell more complex stories. Volkswagen couldn’t use this content in a typical TV spot. Tricks+Stories=Magic cross-over. When combined it creates a good video. Fun can be used to make the world a better place.

Best Song Parody

  • I Gotta Feeling (Unbranded)
  • The Muppets: Bohemian Rhapsody (Branded) Winner!
    Many tweets/comments – loved video.
  • Muppets video collect your fans. Many brands forget that YouTube is a social space, and social network. Improve Everywhere does this very well. They’ve built up hundreds of thousands of subscribers in their base.
    Ricky Van Veen’s (College Humor) golden Rules of Web Video:
    2-3 Min Max,
    Get to the hook fast.
    Make it Topical
    Candy Corn (oh yah I remember that!)

Lifetime Achievement Award

  • The Hitler Parody Videos
    The Tom Jones of YouTube. Hitler has reacted to a lot of topics!
    These use both humor and outrage.
    Invite participation – the number of people who have the ability and have started to create their own videos is very high. It’s not just video people who can build these and put them up… many many people now have the ability to do this.
    Participation can be: Performing, copying, sharing, commenting, rating, viewing.
  • 10.5 million hours of video uploaded to YouTube in the last year
    20 hours of video uploaded every minute!
    130,000 full-length movies released every week.

Video of the Year

  • Epic Beard Man (Unbranded) Winner!
    Two guys get into fight on bus. 4Chan discovered this video, and was brought to popularity. It is sometimes a bit of a meme factory. This is a rich video for conversation – there are many topics in this for controversy. There was a lot of community remixing of the characters in this video.
  • Pants on the Ground (Branded)
    Many parodies created about this video. American Idol gave this video the potential to spread on the internet. A mass audience saw this and latched onto it and ran with it.
  • Start small riots in the niche communities.
    Court communities like constituencies. To do that: recognize them, play to their interests, give them social credence.

No Touching! Truly Invisible Interfaces

Monday, March 15, 2010
Ron Goldin – Lunar

Our devices know which way we’re moving and how dark it is outside. They look us in the face with cameras while we’re tweeting away. They sometimes even understand when we talk back to them. Learn about success stories and untapped potential in physical interactivity that doesn’t involve touching anything at all.

Designing for touch: People and Context Come First.
The technology is here. Sort of.
We change with technology, eventually.

Once we get used to an interface, we get faster at it (shortcuts).

Mouse made it easy to interact with things on the screen.

Getting rid of the physical metaphor completely (iphone, pre, droid) touch screens.

Nintendo Wii – interaction around the entire room.

Soft Remote:
Twist, squeeze, pull the balls to interact with things. Everyone in the room would have a different remote/color to interact in a social way.

B+O Touchless remote
You don’t have to physically touch the remote to interact with it. Video from Engaget

TouchTunes (Airduino)
Air guitar device that involves glove-like device to play guitar through the air. Make one yourself

Playstation 3 Eye
The entire living room is turned into an interface. New Playstation Move similar to the Wii Remote.

Touchless picks up the subtleties of the human body – physical targets help to sort out the noise.

Sony Ericcson Yari
Control the phone with the camera and play games (iboxing)

Medical Devices
Gestics uses gesture interfaces to compliment the surgical procedure. You can use your free hand to view things closer/rotate on the screen.


  • Discoverability
  • Trust
  • Responsiveness
  • Appropriateness (does it make me feel silly?)
  • Physical Feedback (i can’t feel the actual interface)

State of Voice
Goog-411 good response
Google Voice has some issues.
Cars can listen soon, ask about places and get directions. It gets smarter with the sub-grammar is has.

CereBroc is able to make a voice sound correct and not like a robot when a device talks back


  • Nike Plus – running to compete against your friend
  • Middle school kids are given step sensors, and you compete with other schools
  • FasTrak – toll payment (RFID)
  • MetroCard – deduct payment from card for subway
  • Citibank fab swipe
  • BART trials for cell phone deduction to ride train

Location Based:

  • 4Square – Please Rob me shows when people say they’re out.


  • Skiing – don’t want to take off your gloves to change track on iPod.
  • Add sensors to clothing for doing these types of things
  • Phillips has headphones that rotate to change or interact with tracks etc.
  • What about adding voice controls into clothing.
  • CuteCircuit has added sensors into clothing to vibrate your arm when you get a call.
  • Cycling safety – add turn signals to the back of clothing, controlled by the standard hand signals.

Augmented Reality

  • Ferrari uses this technology to mimic what a wheel can look like on a car.
  • Lego – hold up a box and show in front of display to see the actual built model (rotate move around)
  • SixthSense – wearable computer with projector to show data on any surface – interact with hands.

Evan Williams Keynote Interview

Monday, March 15, 2010
Evan Williams – Twitter
Umair Haque – Havas Media Lab

Williams has co-founded several Internet companies, including Pyra Labs (creator of weblog-authoring software Blogger) and Twitter, the now ubiquitous social media platform that hit its tipping-point at SXSW in 2007. In addition to his role as Director of the Havas Media Lab, Umair Haque founded Bubblegeneration, an agenda-setting advisory boutique that shaped strategies across media and consumer industries.

Twitter Announcement:

  • The new @ platform for integrating twitter into websites “@Anywhere
  • You can easily follow people from a link dynamically inside a website (hover).
  • You can also sign-into a website with your Twitter ID.
  • 13 partners (Digg, Amazon, etc.)


  • It reduces fiction
  • You can easily tweet from the column itself.
  • You can easily follow the author straight from the byline.
  • It puts things into context of a site/story.
  • It can give you a connection back to users that wasn’t previously there.
  • I can also get more people talking about you or your content, and bring in tweets about your site/content.


  • Focused on how to create the best product for consumers and businesses.
  • Business is on twitter right now, and consumers are opting into messages from them now.
  • What is Twitter?
    An information network that helps people discover what’s going on in the world that they care about and share what is going on around them. You can take advantage without sharing (just follow what you like).

How does Twitter handle iteration?

  • Twitter experiments a lot – there are a lot of people in twitter doing what they think is best.
  • People are organized into autonomous teams focused on something specific (international, mobile, etc.)
  • What is Ev’s role?
    1/2 big picture direction, 1/2 is internal culture of the company. Openness is a big value of twitter.

Openness – what does it mean at Twitter?

  • Openness or transparency – “a windows is transparent, a door is open” A door lets you come in and mess with what’s going on and not just look at what is going on.
  • Openness is really a survival technique – being open to the idea that you’re wrong, and other people have good ideas. “Assume there are more smart people outside the company vs. inside.”

Why Give the Golden Goose Away?

  • Sharing data openly: MS Bing Google get full stream. There is no business model yet, maybe it doesn’t make sense to give this data away. Decision was made on principle of giving the most value per user.
  • There are millions of tweets per day – tapping into the technology of those partners will allow more people to find/search, and find valuable information on Twitter.
  • It was a tough decision to come to… didn’t want to limit to just a few folks. Why limit it?
  • Third party developers have been able to fill holes. How are businesses going to be able to take advantage of Twitter.
  • There are real businesses to be built on top of Twitter. (the site) isn’t meant to be used for business. It’s a consumer interface.

Apple regulates App Store – how open is Twitter?

  • Error on the side of openness.
  • Some control is still needed. Bad things happen all the time. If were were totally fully open, it would be a disservice to our users. It shouldn’t be easy to spam on twitter – that needs to be stopped.
  • Some management is needed for the ecosystem.

Inclusiveness – Unique Uses

  • Chilean sent an email to thank Twitter for the tool to help communicate after the natural disaster.
  • Twitter is made to reach the weakest communications areas. It’s very simple.
  • Pushing really strong growth in areas (India now) with SMS access in regions where the communication infrastructure is not that powerful.
  • The value of a little bit of information can be really powerful in certain areas of the world.

What is an active user?

  • Is someone getting value out of twitter? It’s very hard to nail down what a user is (outside of just having an account).
  • It could be someone just searching on a site, or using a 3rd party app to watch a brand.
  • There isn’t as much emphasis on the “tell the world what you’re doing,” and now it’s more “there is something on twitter for everyone.”
  • As people consume information on twitter, it’s easier to get involved.
  • Robert Gibbs (white house press secretary) is using Twitter to send messages you normally don’t see in an official communication.
  • India minister is using Twitter in a way that causes some waves.
  • It reduces the number of walls from people who have influence and those who don’t (what the internet should be).
  • If you can share with the world with as few barriers as possible, that’s a big deal!

Is state-control standing in the way of the Internet (Twitter)?

  • Not all nations have the open internet.
  • The internet is a tidal wave that nobody can keep back.
  • We ultimately want to have an impact on the world (either small or large is good) – saving someone’s vacation or announcing the cookies are out of the oven.

Business Model

  • Help people make a better decisions that they wouldn’t have already made. Help people get something done.
  • Haiti awareness with the donation spread on Twitter. People want to hep out, and reducing the friction helps that.
  • Looking at how businesses are using Twitter – there is a new communication method between customers and businesses. It’s more than just clicking on a link and getting information.
  • If this channel helps a business get better, that’s very powerful. It’s even more powerful if it helps both large and small businesses.
  • If you live on the web, you are used to having a relationship with the companies you use. In the real world, it is just a black box. You can finally close the loop with these technologies.

Ambition – 21st Century Businesses have Ambitions

  • Twitter’s vision is down to fostering the exchange for information as a force for good.
  • You can help people control what they pay attention to – save them time vs. cost them time and share things with other people that they’ve learned.

Where is Twitter’s Advantage?

  • Twitter’s advantage only comes when everyone wins. They only do win/win deals.
  • Revenue generating pieces of twitter haven’t been implemented because they don’t want to sacrifice the network.
  • The advantage is having a more thriving network over the next guy – creating an advantage for other people.
  • If you’re closed there is always an advantage to work around you. When open, it just works and nobody needs to work around the openness.

What makes you keep building these things?

  • Creating things in the world that didn’t exist before. Your product should be at the end of the sentence, “Wouldn’t it be awesome if __________?”
  • People look at business and money as the goal vs. the means.

Buzz Out Loud Live 2010, Episode 1185

Monday, March 15, 2010
Tom Merritt – CNET
Jason Howell – CNET/CBSi
Molly Wood – CBS Interactive
Veronica Belmont – Tekzilla & Quore
Ben Huh – I Can Haz Cheezburger

CNET’s Buzz Out Loud will broadcast live from SXSW. While discussing the day’s tech news, hosts Tom Merritt, Jason Howell, Molly Wood and others will chat with the audience and invite special guests to talk about what’s happening at the show and beyond.

I was able to sit in on a podcast that I regularly listen to. You can hear me clapping if you listen to BOL Episode 1185, and/or maybe see me when they pan the audience if you watch the video.

Buzz Out Loud (Cnet)
Buzz Out Loud Live

Web Series 2.0: Big Campaigns on Digital Dollars

Monday, March 15, 2010
Melissa Fallon – Davie Brown Entertainment
Chris Hanada – Retrofit Films
Milo Ventimiglia – DiVide Pictures
Wilson Cleveland – CJP Digital Media
Andrew Hampp  – Advertising Age

As social media campaigns move to the forefront of the digital space, major brands and advertisers are looking for savvy producers and content creators to help them maximize their ad budgets. Learn from top producers in this new field how to produce fantastic content with digital (read fewer) dollars.
Twitter: #BCDD

How are you working with brands, and what is the economic structure?

  • It’s about making the money work for you.
  • There is a fine line between brand managment/message and entertainment. Utilize the entertainment to get the ad out. Distribution is the toughest – how do we get it out there. Where is this creative content going to live? How do we walk that fine line between brand and entertainment?
  • IKEA (IKEA Easy to Assemble): Much of the branded entertainment done is allowing brands to tell their story, and not be dependent on the traditional spot. IKEA’s entire goal is to have people watch it and remember it.

How do you market a web series these days?

  • It depends on what the brand wants.
  • IKEA said push the brand/show out there, and whoever gets the most viewers will get to be in the season finale.
  • Get the enthusiasts of the brand involved, ask blogs to be a part of the distribution.
  • It is really hard to measure how well it does.
  • How do you extend the creative content shelf-life? Get them and hold them.
  • Paid marketing more safe, but social media is more authentic

How are clients planning ahead for these types of things?

  • Big brands don’t look at digital as a less expensive alternative – they are looking at digital as a large part of their marketing mix now. Brands don’t have the same model (4 bombs with 1 success) as a studio might have. It’s a little safer to jump into something already established vs. starting some new unique content.
  • If a brand is bringing a series out, they aren’t a media company and don’t really know how much it costs (they’re new to this world). It is a new skill set for a brand.
  • Marketing executives are now production executives, “I don’t understand scripts, I can give you my input after it’s cut.”
  • The fact that a brand will even invest in a web series isn’t easy. It’s a big risk for a brand to do this.
  • It’s about the honest dialog with the producer about what you want to accomplish – where is the brand represented? What does a brand need to accomplish?
  • Getting into branded online media not about cool factor, but about strategic goals.

What is the capacity for a brand to poke fun at themselves?

  • Nissan said no villains could drive the car, couldn’t crash the car – they’re very strict with the rules.
  • IKEA is shot inside the store.
  • What are looking to do exactly? Verizon in 30 Rock getting a quick plug – what exactly does that do? They already have brand awareness. What does this accomplish for them?
  • Syndicate, syndicate, syndicate. Asking a lot of an audience to come to your microsite to watch.

How do you measure how well this is working?

  • Universal mesurement for engagement [ROI] is still illusive because all brands have different goals.

Talent: How do you attract A-list talent to these properties?

  • The stereotype against the web has changed a lot in the last few years. Technology has leveled the playing field – people are more aware of it now. Engage them as more than actors/writers, involve them more in the process.
  • SAG now says it is important, so actors are seeing it’s important.
  • Many actors are doing these because it’s fun and different. They get to be part of the creative process since many times the money isn’t there.
  • Sometimes actors are getting scale, sometimes a lot of money, sometimes it’s just a favor and “fun” hang out on a weekend and shot it.

Managing Your Content Management System

Monday, March 15, 2010
Alex Will – Spoonfed Media
Henry Erskine Crum – Spoonfed Media

An effective content management system is a must for any content-based web service. This technical session will discuss elements of designing and building a custom CMS that leverages technology and existing web data from sources such as Flickr and Wikipedia to automate research and increase time spent writing original content.

  • Most important factors when making a decision about a CMS: context of your content business and process of content production.
  • Tools to evaluate what CMS you need for your business
  • "A computer based system that allows one or more people to manage the online publication, storage and display of content."

Many CMS systems out there for many different types of content (from many sources). The focus of these will be mainly people-created editorial content.

The production process
This process is very important and often overlooked.

Data collection (going out and getting the raw data) >
Workflow management (assigning tasks and divvy up labor) >
Research (follow up with different sources) >
Write >
Review >

Why did we go down the custom CMS route?

  • Events are a moving target with a finite shelf-life
  • Incentive structure for UGC in events is small
  • Opinionated content for target market

What didn’t matter?

  • Amount of data (most CMSs can handle all amounts of data)
  • Size of web site
  • Complexity of idea

What did matter?

  • Data aggregation from multiple sources
  • Workflow management between editors
  • Reducing research time per event
  • Search Engine Optimization (made it really easy in the system)
  • Lead generation and contact management

Getting the raw data:

  • Automate and aggregate non-editorial elements (have it easy to access and it comes together somewhat automatically)
  • Create different processes for different parts of the information
  • Dealing with issues of quality and duplication (example: deciding what news stories to write real-time)

Workflow management

  • Dividing tasks, vertically segmenting, prioritizing and assigning responsibility
  • Incorporate automated steps into workflow process
  • Reduce or remove the time that is spent by humans prioritizing the information (bigger events need longer lead time)

Reducing research time: the golden ratio

  • Give editors research resources without leaving the page: wikipedia, flickr, and google news
  • Rise of real-time news as part of this process increases relevancy and quality
  • Re-purposing data

Thinking about SEO

  • Tools to aid editors in the production of content for SEO (keyword research)
  • Suggested linking (try to pull in other pages inside or outside similar links to make it as efficient as possible)
  • Major benefits if you’re not using off-the-shelf systems

Wow, That’s Cool… Fun With HTML5 Video

Sunday, March 14, 2010
Michael Dale – Kaltura Wikimedia
Christopher Blizzard – Mozilla Corporation

Using the video tag in HTML5, developers can do all sorts of things that are hard or impossible with plugins. In this presentation, Mozilla will show the best and most interesting hacks entered into OVA’s Open Video Contest-because when the webmonkeys unleash their creativity, things get interesting.

  • Why we video matters
  • Examples of creativity
  • Quick walk through of how to use HTML5 video

Why do we care?
Flash works, Youtube is there.
Flash and video plugins are missing something that the web has. The web has a bigger creativity surrounding it.
It lets people learn from each other and build on each other’s work (view source).
5000 developers surveyed. A huge percentage are self-taught.
Ideas and implementations spread from person to person and site to site.
This transparency is really important and should move into the video space. – a really nice HTML5 video implementation

HTML5 will hopefully accelerate the pace of development of video on the web. Adobe is OK, but still a bit closed and awkward to use. It will hopefully invigorate change in the video realm w/out stagnation. Video should be really well connected to other things on the web. "Either you use flash, or you use web standards."

How is these all connected to the web?
Add animation of video windows and layer on top of video playing.
You can put drag/drop on top of a video (demo had color card moving around an image file on top of video).

<video src="shuttle.ogv"></video> – plain ole video

<video controls="true">
<source type="video/ogg" src="shuttle.ogv"/>
<source type="video/mp4" src="shuttle.mp4"/>
Your browser doesn’t suport HTML video. (You could also put flash or other video embedding in here.)

HTML5: Tales from the Development Trenches

Sunday, March 14, 2010
Bruce Lawson – Opera ASA
Martin Kliehm – namics (deutschland) gmbh

HTML5 is coming. Originally called "web applications 1.0", it brings new semantics, JavaScript APIs for drag and drop, offline storage, generating images, plugin-free video and form validation. It’s upset semantic web advocates, accessibility evangelists and baffled developers. Cut through the crap: learn what it is and what it does.

Tales from development trenches

  • Tales of the development OF HTML5
  • Tales of developing WITH HTML5

1998-1999 – the future would be XML (XHTML). 1999 was the "last" 4.01 HTML Spec.

Web Applications 1.0 (a better HTML)

  • 2003: Started by Opera
  • Then Mozilla (Apple "cheering from the sidelines")
  • WHATWG – web height and text working group
  • (Later: Google, Microsoft involved)
  • All 5 browser manufacturers working together
  • 2006: W3C restarts HTML, using Web Applications 1.0 as the basis for "HTML 5"
  • 2009: XHTML2 Killed
  • 2010 WHAT-WG goes to last call
  • Not yet completed, but getting there
  • Giant spec (900 pages) – only 300 worth looking at
  • Already some implementations of some parts

What is HTML 5?
Not CSS3, not SVG, not geolocation, not MathML, not XHR
HTML5 is an evolution. There are many extras in HTML5 on top of presentational – added ‘bling’ – The evolution has gone from "chimp to pimp"
It extends the language to better support web applications, since that is one of the directions the web is going in and is one of the areas least well served by HTML so far. This puts HTML in direct competition with other technologies indended for applications deployed over the web, in particular Flash and Silverlight
They probably won’t take them over, but competition is always good.

What do Open Standards matter?
The most important program on your computer is your web browser.
Let’s you be social with your friend, write documents, email, etc.
The web is way too important an application to be in the hands of only one vendor – we NEED and open standard.

HTML5 defines what people really want to do.
Survey the code of 3.5 million pages and find the common themes.

  1. header
  2. content
  3. nav
  4. article
  5. footer

All of these going into HTML vs. naming a div in these common elements.

HTML5 Forms (webforms 2)
Coding form validation isn’t much fun. It’s mainly done with JS right now.
Form validation is built into HTML5

< input name=foo type=number min=5 max=15 step=3>
This provides a number field with a max limit

<input name=foo type=url required>
Will require a url and require a value

<input name=foo type=date>
You get the cool little pop-up calendar right from the browser!!! (impressive!)

Immediate graphics mode without plugins

<video> element exposes a simple API for adding video to HTML.
<video src=video.ogv </video>
Controls can/are built into the browser. It is totally styleable with CSS. You can shrink/enlarge thumbnail etc.
Adding captions is easy (start/end captions).

Take Homes

  • HTML5 doesn’t break the web
  • Is sometimes and ugly kludge
  • Can be serialized as XML: XHTML5
  • Defines HTML error-handling to keep consistent DOM
  • Adds new elements and APIs for open standard apps
  • Is coming soon… to a browser near you.

Input Types
<input type="email">
it defaults to a text field for a browser that doesn’t support it.
also validates that it is an email

<input type="search" />
<input type="buttom" />
<input type="text" role="search" />

look for navigator.geolocation and determine current position and display.

Orientation – accesses the accelerometer in a laptop and tilts via canvas

How on board is Microsoft?
They should be coming on IE soon… there will also be a feature detection that will help you determine what a browser can handle. It should degrade easily if a browser doesn’t handle something new.

Exploiting Chaos — How to Spark Innovation During Times of Change

Sunday, March 14, 2010 9:30am

One of North America’s hottest keynote speakers, the founder of, reveals powerful strategies for thriving in any economic climate. DID YOU KNOW THAT Hewlett-Packard, Disney, Hyatt, MTV, CNN, Microsoft, Burger King, and GE all started during periods of economic recession? Periods of uncertainty fuel tremendous opportunity, but the deck gets reshuffled and the rules of the game get changed. As Guy Kawasaki notes, "EXPLOITING CHAOS is a quintessential roadmap for all those who seek opportunity during times of change."

Popular is NOT Cool!
What do you find when you look for cool?

Microtrends and viral inspiration surrounds us. Chaos makes inspiration distracting.
How do we make sense of the noise?

What’s more important, culture or strategy
Culture eats strategy for breakfast. No matter how good your strategy is, the culture of your company is the most important to make the strategy happen.

Smith Corona (the best typewriter in the world!)
Their website: "On the 8th day, God created Smith Corona." They have a 100 year history of innovation. 1989 they had $500 million (they could just buy out someone if they needed a computer). They got into a relationship with Acer (killed the deal 1 yr leater). Smith Corona went Bankrupt in 1995. Acer still living today. The point: Situational framing dictates.

Specifically what are you trying to do?

Crisis = Opportunity
In crisis people are more careful in what they buy. Fortune Magazine was started in the great depression. When people lost their jobs, Fortune showed what is happening behind the boardroom doors, and people were interested in this.

Forced Failure
Successful organizations innovate to "optomize" position on their "hill," but to find bigger "hills," one must fail. When you’re good, everything else seems like a failure by comparison.

Win like you’re used to it, lose like you enjoy it.

Customer Obsession
Who litters on the side of the road? Young Males who drive pickup trucks. The crying native American didn’t convince them. The new slogan: Don’t Mess with Texas!" This is how to keep the message connected today. When making a cultural connection you induce change. 72% decrease in littering. You need to observe customers… in their zone. Interact with them.

BP Oil and Gas Observations

  • Teenage boys ‘group shot’ at gas stations.
  • They get excited about energy drinks
  • Rockstar Fuel!
  • Find a way to be simply irrisistable to a certain group of people.

There is no point of innovating if you think you already know the answer. Try to disprove what you think you know and find different patterns.

Infectious Marketing

  • 3 ways to cultivate infection
  • Viral Creations
    The half-suit – When you create something today that connects, your story will travel faster than ever before. You can look at what is becoming viral, and package what you’re selling into something similar. Focus in on what you do in 7 words or less.
    Story obsession:
    1. Simple – supercharge word of mouth
    2. Direct – why should I choose you?
    3. Supercharged – the i have to tell someone test
  • Viral Mediums
  • Well packaged story

JP Morgan’s Lesson:
Wake up every day and do 2 things – list of things you actually need to do, and actually do them.

Viral trends + methodical innovation, generate ideas harness creativity ultimately exploit chaos