Archive for the ‘Miscellanea’ Category

Fini (Thanks)

Monday, 19 March 2007; 6:15

“That’s all, folks!”


Friday, 9 February 2007; 12:07

JUSTNET (Justice Technology Information Network) is part of the research and development division of the United States Department of Justice. And as we all know, police and law enforcement need all the help they can get these days. With its in-depth video demonstrations, JUSTNET serves as an “honest broker” offering support, research findings, and technological expertise to help state and local law enforcement and corrections personnel perform their duties more safely and efficiently.

If they are of interest to you, take a few minutes and watch videos on body armor, public safety radio systems, and even how to quell prison riots. There is also the Technology on the Job video [which] provides a look at some of the technologies undergoing research, development, and testing by the National Institute of Justice (NIJ). The technologies presented in [the] video include video evidence analysis, thermal imaging, geographic information systems, and DNA evidence.

This last highlighted video is comprised of several segments. The Distillery will first point you to the introduction. However, among others you might find the segments on Video Evidence Analysis and DNA evidence interesting. In addition, the videos are offered for both Real and Windows Media players and also in three different bandwidths. Clearly, the information is intended to be readily available to all, regardless of computer resources. Nice job, DOJ.

Home page:  JUSTNET



Tuesday, 6 February 2007; 8:50

Moments before being relegated to the Hall of Shame, these instructional videos were uncovered at Clairol Haircolor.

Home page:  Clairol

“Let it out.” (Kleenex)

Friday, 26 January 2007; 11:42

When was the last time you laughed so hard that you cried? Kleenex wants to know and also wants you to post your associated pictures or videos. (There’s nothing like consumer-generated content for one’s site. Just ask YouTube.) Not only is this Kleenex site interactive, but it is also participatory. (Yes, there is a difference.)

One of the things The Distillery especially likes is the way Kleenex absconded with the YouTube model and streams its own videos instead of placing them on YouTube. A number of other firms should follow that lead. The difference is like having a Hotmail e-mail address vs. an e-mail address with your own domain name. The latter is simply more professional and business-like.

The Distillery likes the Kleenex site. Not only will you find the above, but with a few additional clicks one runs into multimedia content for Kleenex’s new oval-shaped tissues. Questions: Might they be a product variation that consumers didn’t even know they wanted? Might they be a true nasal-technology breakthrough? Or, might Kleenex simply be making noise and blowing its nose by offering consumers a “new and improved” Kleenex? (Oops, make that Kleenex brand tissue. The Distillery wouldn’t want to dilute the Kleenex brand name.) 

Home page:  “Let it out” (Kleenex)
Videos:  “Let it out”
Home page:  Kleenex Oval Tissues (Easy $$$ for bloggers!)

Friday, 4 August 2006; 15:49

Fellow bloggers, look below at the posting for Davison Design. As you can see, it is labeled as an advertisement. But not only is it an advertisement, it’s a paying advertisement. The outcome of that singular posting is $10 US deposited in my PayPal account. Easy money, I’d say. (Update: No entries at The Distillery are now associated with

It’s so easy that I’m passing along how you, too, can get paid for blog postings. Point your browser/mouse/trackball/cursor/command line/etc. to (And yes, I’ll even be paid for this posting. Ain’t life wonderful?) Open an account as a blogger and then look through the listings of opportunities. Those are advertisers willing to pay the indicated amount for a blog posting that meets the given advertiser’s criteria.

For example, the posting below required at least 200 words about Davison Design. Also included by specification is an invisible tracking link. (I added the visible images although they were not specified.) A link back to the sponsor was also specified. Any such links will be specified at PayPerPost and are provided for you to use. The write-up was specified to be a neutral review, but as you will see at PayPerPost, some advertisers specify if a given posting is to be just a review, only positive in tone, the blogger’s own assessment of the advertised product, or neutral in tone.

Once PayPerPost reviews your blog posting and verifies it meets all stated criteria, the offered amount is automatically deposited in your PayPal account once a month. (I am assuming that given my report states the deposit will be made to my PayPal account in 29 days.) What you see below was my first trial. I had my doubts, but it appears to be just as advertised.

In sum, what can be better than being paid to blog as you would anyway? Thanks, PayPerPost. Also thanks to another WordPress blogger who pointed me to it. As I said, it’s easy money — if you’re willing to sell-out. You can also choose to donate your earnings to charity.

Home page:
Blog: PayPerPost Blog (inc. videos) logo graphic

BlogPulse (Neilsen BuzzMetrics)

Wednesday, 2 August 2006; 13:22

We are being watched. We have been assigned monikers and buzzwords. We have our own metrics. We have buzz. We are bloggers.

They show up in our blogs’ search statistics. They take our pulse and index our blogs to see if we’re buzzing. They assign us metrics and measures. They openly state they wish to take over the world (or at least searching the blogosphere). They are Nielsen.

I have to give Nielsen due credit. Its imminent death has been supposed more than once, each time after a major change in consumers’ content consumption channels or after various outcries by advertisers and/or advertising agencies. However, Nielsen is still here and seems to be adjusting to its changing environment — and the rise of consumer-generated content — with aplomb once again.

So if you are a blogger, you might wish to view the following explanatory videos from BlogPulse:

General Overview
Focus On Technology

And from there, point your mouse/trackball/cursor/trackpad/middle finger at Nielsen’s BlogPulse Tools Overview page where you will find additional videos worth taking a few minutes of your time to view.

Important Addendum: Bloggers, submit your blog for indexing by BlogPulse here.

Home page: BlogPulse
Home page: Nielsen BuzzMetrics

BlogPulse graphic 01 BlogPulse Trend graphic BlogPulse trend graphic 02 BlogPulse conversation tracker graphic BlogPulse profiles graphic

Blogtipping Day [01 August 06]

Tuesday, 1 August 2006; 14:54

I Love Blogtipping graphic

Although there is absolutely no free time for reading 99.99% of the other blogs in the Blogosphere, The Distillery does wish to note that today — as is the first day of every month — is Blogtipping Day.

Just in case the concept of Blogtipping Day is new to you, read all about Blogtipping Day here ( and here (

Thanks again for the recognition Chartreuse (beta), Liz Strauss (, Tim Stay (, and Easton Ellsworth (

Note: The Distillery has full assurances from the founder of Blogtipping Day that only blogs, and not bucolic bovines, may find themselves blogtipped on the first day of each month.

Blogtipping caution sign graphic

Microcasting: New TVoIP Channels

Tuesday, 1 August 2006; 13:02

Welcome to the 21st century. A decade or so ago, the cable industry proudly announced that one day consumers would have a choice of 400 channels. Cable firms were as short-sighted then as they are now. The Distillery laughed when the cable industry promised the future as they saw it. Instead, The Distillery saw thousands and thousands of channels, some even “starring” narcissistic individuals, but all focused on increasingly narrow target or niche markets.

One might look at it another way. Remember when ESPN first aired and its sports content included lumberjacking and other decidedly obscure “sports?” In a sense, ESPN was more ahead of its time than it knew. What those early programs lacked in numbers of viewers, they more than made up for their few viewers with their [implicit] predictions of a future where broadcasting (e.g., Monday Night Football) gives way to narrowcasting (e.g., “season ticket” all-games packages), and then to microcasting where only very small niche markets exist (e.g., field hockey TVoIP), and can be profitable even with far smaller scales and scopes given the internet’s often contrarian economics.

Country Channel TV graphic
Index: Country Channel TV


Real Estate TV graphic
Index: Real Estate TV

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European Affairs Channel graphic
The European Affairs Channel (a.k.a. EUX.TV)


TeacherNet graphic
Teachers’ TV


FieldHockey.TV graphic
Field Hockey TV


Intl. Hockey Fed. graphic
WorldHockey Television
Index: International Hockey Federation


Golf Bug TV graphic
Index: Golf Bug TV Blog


Friday, 28 July 2006; 9:40

I must remember to keep my expectations low. With all the billions and billions of dollars traded each day at the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE), one might expect a few thousand of of those dollars to be well-spent on a very nice online promotion. Not! Instead, we find the NYSE has discovered a way to make yesterday’s [27 July 06] special ringing of the day’s opening bell by Accenture, celebrating its fifth year of listing, a real yawner. You can “virtually” ring The Bell(s) for yourself here.

Okay, I’ll just take a deep breath. I’ve been here before. That’s why I have a closet full of wingtip shoes. Business is supposed to be boring, right? (Okay, so one pair of my wingtips are actually Doc Martens.) Keeping with that tradition of boredom, we also find NYSE 4 On The Floor and its “Exclusive insights from global leaders.” Boring!

On the other hand, the NYSE does recognize the importance of timeliness in business. To that end, it provides Before the Bell, a video broadcast from the trading floor by CNBC’s Bob Pisani each business morning at 9 AM (EDT). It also makes available Market Pulse and Market Wrap from its page of From the Floor webcasts. The index page for all its webcasts can be found here.

That’s it. That’s all I have to say about that.

Home page: New York Stock Exchange (NYSE)

Ringing of NYSE opening bell graphic

Life Takes Visa (Visa)

Tuesday, 25 July 2006; 12:48

Visa (yea, the card you’ve maxed out) has compiled an interesting mix of vignettes that life takes. Take your time and look around a bit. Also, watch out for what you may think are the page’s physical boundaries. There are more vignettes beyond those visible on your screen.

Home page: Visa
Home page: Life Takes Visa

Life Takes Visa graphic Visa card graphic


Monday, 24 July 2006; 14:15

I find it very ironic that a pre-computers brick-and-mortar firm such as Caterpillar “gets” the internet more than Silicon Graphics, a firm that all but owes its existence to the internet. How can that be? There are mysteries of the universe (and business) still not understood.

Let us see the sizzle at Caterpillar by starting with its Caterpillar Cat Chopper. In fact, Caterpillar even gives the big yellow hog its own mini-site. Yes, that’s a lot of yellow sizzle and we’ve yet to even see or smell the steak. (Are you paying attention, SGI? Jeesh, beat by a bunch of guys and gals that move dirt instead of pixels? Yes SGI, you’ve fallen very, very low.)

And here is the steak — videos for Caterpillar’s Cat Lift Trucks and mining equipment. There is the Cat Lift Truck mini-site that has a focused eye on multimedia presentations, such as this demonstration. Elsewhere, we find a video for the AccuGrade Laser Grade Control System. And there is more — a video for the 930G Wheel Loader.

We then find content like that which The Distillery expected to find at SGI, but did not. Have a look at this superb 3D fly-through of the 420D Backhoe Loader at the Caterpillar Model Explorer. (Important: You will need to begin at the Caterpillar 3D Showcase to download and install the requisite Active X plugin.) Given all that has been easily found, there is likely more rich media at Caterpillar, but the point has been made. Even B2B and industrial markets should be able to smell and hear the steak before they actually see it.

A high level of customer service has always been a Caterpillar selling point. I don’t know about the present, but at one time Caterpillar guaranteed the delivery of any parts to any place on the planet within 24 hours. And should that not still be the case, they certainly do not follow Microsoft’s example of kissing goodbye to customers who own older products. Have a look at heavy equipment history with Caterpillar’s Legendary Service Literature Catalogs (not multimedia).

And last, here is something (not multimedia) for the little boy [or girl] in us who once marveled at big heavy equipment and hopefully still lurks within us somewhere. Can you identify each piece of Caterpillar’s heavy machinery simply from its silhouette?

Home page: Caterpillar

Cat Lift Truck graphic Caterpillar Cat Chopper graphic

The 30-Second Ad is Dead, Long Live the 30-Second Ad, Maybe

Wednesday, 5 July 2006; 13:58

Distillery readers may find this interesting reading. The full text of the article can be found at

How will marketers adapt to the new world of ultimate consumer control and content/audience fragmentation? . . . broadband is THE window to the future. Streaming/cached video online is essentially video-on-demand (VOD), which closely reflects the digital video recorder experience. No one knows for sure how the consumer will adapt to their new tools of control; however, lessons can be learned by paying attention to what works for marketers in broadband video. A glimpse into how we can create marketing success in a VOD and personal video recorder-controlled future can be found today. It is time for advertisers to buck up, because there is no better time than the present to look ahead.

Starcom MediaVest Group logo
Starcomip logo