IBM Watson at Your Service. One Step Closer to Passing the Turing Test.

IBM has recently unveiled the IBM Watson Engagement Advisor, “a technology breakthrough that allows brands to crunch big data in record time to transform the way they engage clients in key functions such as customer service, marketing and sales.” Brands such as the Royal Bank of Canada and market research organizations such as Nielsen, are taking notice.

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The Great Race to Brand the Clouds

The benefits of technology and more specifically the internet, seem to be endless: information and data accessibility, entertainment, commerce, ease of communication, etc. For me, technology is attractive because it makes our lives easier to navigate. The innovation of cloud computing has made this even more apparent. The idea of syncing all of your files (photos, music, documents, etc.) and having accessibility wherever you are, is absolutely amazing.

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Open Source: The Model Is About Branding

The traditional business model for companies is to create a product and/or provide a service to customers in order to receive payment and hopefully exceed operational costs to generate a profit. However, what happens when you are not creating a product or service, but instead ideas? How do you make a profit? How can you differentiate yourself from the competition when your product is perceived as a commodity? This is a common dilemma for companies that engage in Open Source design, development or distribution. As defined by the Open Source Initiative, open source is “a development method for software that harnesses the power of distributed peer review and transparency of process. The promise of open source is better quality, higher reliability, more flexibility, lower cost, and an end to predatory vendor lock-in.” The benefits for open source are compelling and the idea of creating a community of the brightest minds to create something new is inspiring. This idea of sharing your creative wealth to accomplish great things is something the Creative Commons embraces.

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Creativity: The Essence of Change

A look at creativity in advertising, an economic recession and its affect on urban revitalization. The great David Ogilvy once said, “It takes a big idea to attract the attention of consumers and get them to buy your product. Unless your advertising contains a big idea, it will pass like a ship in the night.” The essence of our industry is in big ideas and creativity. These elements help to communicate information in a persuasive manner by captivating the attention and interest of individuals. Big ideas and creativity can create brand awareness and in some cases even change brand perception, preference or image. The crucial point here, from a holistic perspective, is that big ideas and creativity are the answer to change – whether in advertising or other industries.

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The Convergence of Cognitive Neuroscience and Marketing

A few years ago, I read an article in the New York Times that explained the convergence of cognitive neuroscience and marketing. Since then I have been very interested in how advertising and marketing affects culture and more specifically how neuroscience could be applied to advertising. Will the convergence of neuroscience and marketing force our industry to become a science? And more importantly, should it? Is advertising an art or a science?

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The Nike+ Human Race

When Nike and Apple created the Nike+iPod device, I’m not quite sure if they knew the exact impact that it would have on the brand. Not only does the product balance form (simple, modern design) and function (allowing users to track the elapsed time of the workout, the distance traveled, pace, or calories burned), but it also fosters a growing relationship with the consumer through an engaging brand experience. The Nike+iPod website (developed by R/GA) is compelling in both design and functionality.

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