Showing posts from December 20, 2009

Pepsi to Skip Super Bowl Ads in Favor of $20M Social Media Campaign

The Super Bowl is consistently one of the most-watched television programs of the year. Even as network television viewership continues to erode — thanks to cable, timeshifting and Internet options — advertisers are still willing to pay big ad dollars for a spot on Super Bowl Sunday. That could be changing. For the first time in 23 years, Pepsi will not have any ads in the Super Bowl. Instead, the company will be spending $20 million on a social media campaign it’s calling The Pepsi Refresh Project.
Such a large move is noteworthy for any company, however Pepsi’s symbiotic relationship with the Super Bowl makes this shift to new media that much more seismic. ABC News notes that Pepsi spent $142 million on Super Bowl ads over the last decade. Pepsi’s ads are often some of the most iconic, and the company has historically pulled out all the stops for the Super Bowl.The Pepsi Refresh ProjectRather than spending money on a Super Bowl ad, Pepsi will launch the Pepsi Refresh Project on Janua…

OLPC Comes Up With a Beautiful, Thin Tablet Concept


Brief: Microsoft barred from selling Word, has plan for workaround

The US Court of Appeals has ordered Microsoft to drop support for editing Custom XML in Word, essentially stopping the company from selling current versions of one of its flagship products and affirming a $290 million patent infringement judgment against the software giant. The injunction, which goes into effect on January 11, 2010, not only bars the sale of Word 2007, but also affects all editions of Microsoft Office 2007, since Word comes bundled with all of them. It's not as bad as it seems, however. "This injunction applies only to copies of Microsoft Word 2007 and Microsoft Office 2007 sold in the US on or after the injunction date of January 11, 2010," a Microsoft spokesperson told Ars, meaning all copies of these products sold before this date (including Word 2003 and Word 2007) are not affected. "With respect to Microsoft Word 2007 and Microsoft Office 2007, we have been preparing for this possibility since the District Court issued its injunction in August …

Avatar reviewed in 3D, on IMAX: you know the story; go anyway

Avatar may be hurt by the curse of expectation, and it's hard to keep the message that MOVIE MAKING HAS BEEN CHANGED FOREVER out of your mind once your butt is actually in a seat in front of the thing. The trailers keep telling us how nothing will ever be the same again, and we know the budget of the movie was anywhere from $200 million to $500 million, depending on what report you're reading. Who knows how much R&D Cameron put into the technology behind the movie.Even the credits of the film are monstrous: after Industrial Light and Magic and Weta Digital were credited for the special effects, the long line of other effects houses that worked on the movie scrolled by. I lost count of how many different companies leveraged how many different forms of technology to get Avatar filmed. If you're a fan of cinema, no matter how you feel about the trailer, you need to see this movie; it represents the absolute best that technology can give us in film—at least with an unlimit…

Accidents increase at Chicago red light camera intersections

The Chicago suburbs are buying into the red light camera movement, but the results are not very positive. The number of accidents actually rose during the first year the cameras were installed in most instances, with another two showing no change whatsoever. The trend reflects what other municipalities are finding when it comes to the alleged "safety" benefits of the cameras. There isn't any, but that isn't stopping more cities from cashing in on the increase in tickets. The Chicago Tribune put together a handy page that contains yearly accident data for every red light camera installed in the Chicago metropolitan area from 2006 and 2007. According to the data, the first 14 installed in the suburbs right after they got the green light (ba-dum ching!) in 2006 showed pretty poor results: a full 50 percent saw an increase in accidents after the cameras were installed. In fact, some of the intersections didn't just show an average increase—some of them were quite sig…

Which way to the normal doctor?

Which way to the normal doctor?: "
Mrs. Jones, the biopsy revealed malignant tissue.

We’re going to have to microwave and melt.

Photo courtesy of Frank Wang.

Found at hospital in Xin Jiang, China.