Archive for the 'Too much free time' Category

Using new media to drive decisions for old media

November 20, 2007

I was in Portland last week talking with a few people who really understand this video:

I saw this video about 6 months ago (maybe longer since I never really know what day it is) but I haven’t seen it in a long time. Since I returned from Portland I have seen the advertisement 4 times (and I have watched a total of 3 hours of television).

Two things I know:

1.) Advertisements often repeat many times in a single segment – Ok cool.

2.) The old media has not caught up with new media this fast – i.e. – The television shows that I watched since I returned are not “aware” that “I” actually watched this video. In fact that would be even more phenomenal since I watched the video in Portland on Thursday and returned to Massachusetts on Saturday. (Somday – but not today)

However, this brings up a good point. What if FedEx was smart. What if FedEx had created a program that could scour social media sites – YouTube,, VodPod etc… to find all media posted about FedEx. Certainly, they would have to manually massage the list but when they were finished they would have a perfect dataset on how many times their commercials were watched.

Then with this data, they could determine which of their expensive (and probably not so expensive) commercials were most successful. Then if they saw a sudden spike in the number of times a particular ad was played in the new medium, then they could return that ad into the rotation in the old medium.

Or, maybe (the more likely story – unfortunately) the writer’s strike is forcing everyone – including commercial makers – to go back to the content that made them successful in the past.



March 30, 2007

I ran across this link (Mike this is for you):

Blockbuster’s Total Access is better than NetFlix

December 30, 2006

The only thing that I can say negative about the new Blockbuster “Total Access” program (besides, what took you so long) is that the “New Releases” section seems to have a bug in it.  I would think that a movie like “Pirates of the Caribbean, Dead Mans Chest” would appear in the New Releases, however it does not, instead you have to search for it.  I would include “Jackass 2”, “The Davinci Code” and “World Trade Center” on that list as well.  All available but you need to search for them, they don’t appear in the “New Releases” section which seems odd.  Since this was the worst thing I could find so far (and it’s not really that bad) I figured I would get it out of the way.  Now on to the goodies:

With both services, you have the ability to sign up for a plan (I chose the 2 movies out at a time for 14.99 a month).  I order the movies, receive them in 2 business days (1 for processing and 1 for the actual mailing) which is the same as NetFlix (Currently NetFlix offers a wider selection of plans):

Plan Rentals/month Price/month* Free Trial Length
4 DVDs at-a-time Unlimited! $23.99 2 week
Free Trial!
3 DVDs at-a-time

Most Popular!

Unlimited! $17.99 2 week
Free Trial!
2 DVDs at-a-time Unlimited! $14.99 2 week
Free Trial!
1 DVD at-a-time Unlimited! $9.99 2 week
Free Trial!
1 DVD at-a-time Limit 2 per
$4.99 2 week
Free Trial!


3 DVD’s at a time  == $17.99

2 DVD’s at a time == $14.99

1 DVD at a time   == $ 9.99

The prices are comparable (exactly the same) except NetFlix offers the super plan (4 DVD’s) and the weak plan (1 DVD a month – 2 total DVD’s in a 30 day period).  Both services offer you fast delivery (I am sure that Blockbuster does the same type of priority switching that NetFlix has been accused of).  Both offer you free shipping and an online queue management system.  While NetFlix offers 5K more movies (70K vs. 65K) I think that Blockbuster’s offer is better and heres why:

Blockbuster has one thing that NetFlix doesn’t have – 1000’s of stores with 1000’s of movies on the shelves.  During NetFlix’s launch to stardom, many said that this is what separated NetFlix from Blockbuster – and they were right.  Only now I think it makes Blockbusters approach better.

With the Total Access plan, you can return your DVD’s at the store.  When you drop off your DVD (in the mailing package) at the store, you can pick up another DVD.  In addition, Blockbuster will return your movie for you and the Online portion of Blockbuster will send you your next movie in the queue.  Genius!  So what this really turns out to is two key features (that I have been quietly waiting for):

1.) The ability to get a movie quickly for those times you have unexpected guests (We have 2 boys who have sleepovers and visitors and getting a video quickly is a necessity).

2.) You can have more than 2 videos out at a time.  With Total Access, I can return my 2 DVD’s to the store, get 2 new DVD’s, and then in two days I have 2 more.

And you also receive a free in store Movie or Video Game rental a month.  One thing that NetFlix doesn’t offer is video game rentals.  This is a kicker.  So, if you have a bit of gamer in you (or you just have to see what the fuss is about) you can rent a game a month and have it out for a week.

To be honest, I have just started using my service so this is a bit new, but I think that my relationship with Blockbuster has just gotten a whole lot better.

Web archive grabbed my old site

June 16, 2006

I was once the manager of the Boston ColdFusion User Group. It has since been taken over by Brian Rinaldi (three cheers for Brian!). Anyways, when I ran the group, our domain name was "". Brian has registered "" and is using that to host content regarding the group. I completed my tenure as manager of the group about a year and a half ago and unfortunately had to let the domain name "" lapse. In fact, I even took the server down that was originally hosting the site.

This week, I attended the new group meeting (great session about Flex2 if you have not had the opportunity to review you should certainly give it a glance – really cool development environment) and was hounded by this one member regarding the fact that the old site was still up. I assured him that I had let the domain name lapse and that I had even taken the server down. He insisted that the site was available and that it confused some individuals because it contained information from meetings that appeared to be valid. I dismissed the conversation quickly because it was difficult to argue with someone that was adamant.

When I went home that night I tried to bring up the site. After typing in the address "" I was surprised to see the browser start to connect to the URL. I was waiting for that typical domain squatter page that states "this domain is for sale". You know the generic pages that show up when you type in or something similar. To my surprise though, the page started to appear. The old page of the site, just as I had left it. How could this be?

Webarchive – The Wayback Machine
As I started to stare at the pages loading I could not help but notice my status bar started to display "" … THE WAYBACK MACHINE!!! I first ran across this site about 4 years ago and was amazed it's archive (Go here to see my first Web site – ) depth. If you haven't had an opportunity to poke around this site, have fun.

Then I looked up the dns record to see who it was registered to. Apparently "Dotster", the company I registered the domain with, has registered the site themselves and I am not sure if they have some deal with TWBM but it seems a bit odd that not only would Dotster keep my domain name but that would point it at the page of my old site.

What is even weirder about this is that they don't really "forward" people to the site, the browser URL is still, it just displays data from Almost as if they have some program written that takes the content from the Archive and displays.

So I guess I owe the gentleman at the meeting an apology, he was correct, for all intent and purposes, the site is still up. Unfortunately, I have no way of taking it down.

I would love to know if anyone has any more information on this.

How much effort does this take to build?

April 11, 2006

Ok I have no time at all to even find content like this on the Internet (if it wasn't for I would have never found this). How would you ever have the time to build this. Hopefully the person who made this entered it into a contest or received some college credit for this work, it seems like there was a lot of effort put into this. Actually, I thank them, because being a Matrix fan, this was a very entertaining clip.