Tuesday, May 1, 2007
Scott Cooper, MIT researcher with the Sloan School of Management, co-author of "Coolhunting"
Peter Gloor, MIT researcher with the Sloan School of Management, co-author of "Coolhunting"
Steve O'Keefe, moderator
MODERATOR: Could you tell us where you're calling from?
PETER: I'm calling in from Switzerland today.
SCOTT: Today, I'm calling from my home office in MA.
MODERATOR: I'd like to remind everyone of the rules of the Coolhunt. We do at least one site, one blog post, one comment on another blog, and try to make one personal connection via email or phone.
PETER: Zebo seems to be mostly for lonely boys and girls wanting someone to talk you, and I'm amazed so much information is right there for everyone to read.
SCOTT: An alum sent me an email about this website, GoLoco, for ride sharing.
MODERATOR: I'm wondering how many people post profiles on how many different websites.
PETER: Another website allows you to use one dashboard to merge all of your social networking profiles into one to mix and mingle. In all my coolhunting I've noticed that this is all like a virtual yard sale.
MODERATOR: Yes, you can attach prices to items. But people also were being facetious. However, some are actually revealing their real feelings, such as with IFeelFine.com
PETER: Let's go to GoLoco.
SCOTT: I think we're in the very beginning of social networking using new technologies. And eventually, it'll become specific instead of just an atomized digital connection. With GoLoco you can see where people are driving and who needs rides. What's really interesting is what was asked of me when I registered: what kind of vehicle I had, what kind of trips I made, what languages I speak, what music I like, and some other general information. One goal is for same-language speakers to be paired.
MODERATOR: GoogleMaps also seems to be used to establish routes.
SCOTT: The reason they ask for the type of vehicle is so others will know what to look for when you arrive to pick people up.
PETER: They probably have to update their calculator to keep in line with gas price changes.
SCOTT: My main point of mentioning GoLoco is that you can compare prices with public transit. This is a good example of a specific use of social networking on the web. It's sort of like "stitch 'n' bitch" where people meet as not only a sewing club but also to converse -- coming together to share as a social community, whether to complain or gossip.
MODERATOR: This is a good way to close the gap on customer service, where complaining may not be done elsewhere.
PETER: It's about making money, networking (finding a plumber), and also explains why you might want to do something.
SCOTT: On my list it shows someone named Holly Parker is looking for a ride. The cost is $4.50 per mile, tolls, how much is paid per passenger, and a transaction fee. Then there's a picture of Holly. It also shows a list of who she trusts, which also involves being assigned a buddy in case you end up on a milk carton as missing.
MODERATOR: There has to be a privacy issue involved here.
PETER: Minggl is our next site.
MODERATOR: This reminds me of a site SubmitIt, which allows you to post something that would be submitted to a number of directories in a one-stop fashion.
PETER: If you need some explanation, just drag the cursor across the bullet points. You can request an invitation or you can use the "video tutorial" link at the bottom of the site to guide you through the site.
MODERATOR: It's interesting that they use YouTube videos as their tutorial. It's a very clever use, and it solves compatibility problems as well. YouTube converts to Flash, which is more universal and better quality than many viewers.
PETER: Kyte TV is our next site. This site could be described as twitter on steroids. You can put together entire stories for those who care as well as those who don't. It's more entertaining than pod casting. It's like being a local reporter.
MODERATOR: What we're watching is an animated short with a sound track, a montage of images. And it looks like there's been quite a bit of viewing and comments.
PETER: When I stumbled on this a few days ago I noticed that there's many holiday vacation videos on the site. And there's probably many visitors because of a recent New York Times article about the site.
MODERATOR: The number of viewers of online videos is truly stunning.
PETER: This should make cell phone companies happy since we'll be able to send video messages, which are much more expensive than regular messages.
SCOTT: There's an emerging tool, a search engine called blinkx, that gives you the ability to search the contents of web videos. It was reported in The New York Times Business section.
PETER: Bertlesman, Sony, etc. make the most use of video search technologies to make money by suing YouTube. They're setting up their spiders to search for infringement.
SCOTT: From a technological point of view we're well on our way to coolhunt within videos, finding phrases, etc. The ability to coolhunt in new kinds of ways is coming.
MODERATOR: It wasn't long ago that we couldn't even use speech recognition.
MODERATOR: We are out of time. Thank you, Scott. We've been talking today with the co-authors of Coolhunting: Chasing Down the Next Big Thing. Listeners, please post your comments to the blog -- whether they're about commentary on the subject of today's coolhunt or any connection problems you experienced. The transcript of today's coolhunt will be posted with previous ones at The Swarm Creativity Blog: http://swarmcreativity.blogspot.com.
Join us tomorrow for the next installment of our live, online coolhunt with Peter Gloor and Scott Cooper.
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