Pure Content

Look at more stuff. Think about it harder.
11.22.2002
 Sean

major major growth

from the Nov. 19, 2002 CSM:

recent dramatic events in the world such as 911 and the violence in the Middle East have had an impact on the majors that U.S. college students are pursuing. A recent study by the largest U.S. student lender, Sallie Mae, reports that almost 20% of colleges and universities have seen a sharply higher student interest in at least one of six categories of college majors. the fastest growing majors are--criminal justice, health-related, social studies, faith based studies, and international studies.

an advisor in the religious studies department of Indiana University comments, "Students are just more curious about things they don't know about."

at the same time, several categories of major have seen a big decrease, including computer science. (trends)



 Sean

birds of a feather...retire together

you might think it odd to hear of a retirement home developer having a rough time finding money for a new project. the ageing baby boomer population was and remains a huge market opportunity for developers of retirement communities. but this was not the typical retirement development--it was the Palms of Manasota (Florida): the first "alternative senior housing" community--although of both sexes, all of its 40 or so residents are gay. (trends)

this week's Economist
discusses the emergence of a new property business--one that aims to meet the demands of the ageing gay community, whose population is project to reach 4m people (65+) by the year 2030. housing developers say that this translates into a demand for at least 66,000 homes in retirement communities over the next 20 years. this demand is strengthened due to the lack of company and care that many older, gay retirees have. A study by the Brookdale Centre on Ageing at Hunter College (NY) found that fewer than one in five elderly gays have a life partner and only one in ten has children.

 Sean

postal injection

this is a new term i came across. today's WSJ has an article on the healthy condition of Amazon.com, due to healthly sales growth and a consistent ability to cut costs. this cost cutting has enabled the online retailer to offer more customers the option of free shipping, which is considered to be integral to consumers adoption of online retail. free shipping spurs sales volume, which helps Amazon get a break on shipping rates and has led to the birth of a new biz term--"postal injection."

The company is increasingly using a method called "Postal injection," in which it uses its own trucks or independent carriers to drive truckloads of orders to local postal depots from Amazon warehouses. The procedure eliminates processing steps for the U.S. Postal Service.


and helps Amazon save a bunch of money

11.21.2002
 Brad

entrepreneurs

New research is developing about entrepreneurism ("the word your spellchecker will never get right"). ABCNews.com has an article about it, with a professor from the College of Knowledge. In summary, people are entrepreneurs because "They have trouble imagining failure, and they don't care what you think." But you would be remiss if you let it go at that. Go forth and read.

 Jennifer

I just wanted to share something I saw in Brooklyn recently. I was walking in my neighborhood near Brooklyn Heights and came across a long line of people that stretched a couple of blocks. SInce a line of people is always a sure thing to arose curiosity, I followed it to the front and noticed it snaked into an intersection, and the front of the line started at a manhole. I learned that there was an art gallery set up underground, just for the day, and the only way to get to it was through the manhole. I have no information on this and couldn't find anything about it on the internet but it sticks in my mind as a brilliant buzz-builder. If we want to get attention for something, WHERE we do something can be as creative as HOW we do something.

 fruit

As a graduate student in Organization Development, I'm frequently asked, "What is OD?" . Now I could give the usual textbook answers that most of my profs would give: that "OD is an interdisciplinary approach to business change initiatives..." blah blah blah (snooze).... but I prefer to describe my role as, "I pay attention to the simple things that people like about their jobs. Then I try to help them discover how to pull those positive attributes to the forefront on a regular basis, in multiple situations, in order to make their day to day go a little smoother." (I know, I know... "blah blah blah" here too!) Anyhow, I got this link from an OD listserve and thought I'd pass it along. It's an article by Shari Caudron on Why We Work. Peace, Love, and OD :o) -Sarah Eppink
http://email.workforce.com/cgi-bin2/flo?y=eJrD0GTDda0CKs0BsPL0Ab

 Brad

dancing fools

Some of you tried to access the breakdancing link from a couple of days ago, and you couldn't get to it. To make up for that, here's a little sumpin' sumpin' I stumbled across. Enjoy.





Business application? None. Creativity? Not really. Fun? You bet.

update : I found a mirror to that breakdancing site. It really is remarkable: www.joe.to/kolla2001.wmv

11.20.2002
 Sean

media commentary moratorium

like taking a nice long drink of cool water after a trek through the desert--it's good to be back on the blog. in case you haven't noticed, my last post was two weeks ago--a day of reckoning for my myself, my vision of the world, and hope for the future. so i took some time off and imposed a two week moratorium on viewing, listening, interpreting, and commenting the news, current events, politics, world affairs, and the Real World.

now i'm back, mentally resuscitated and eager to share. my gaze is fixed forward and i'm not looking back. except for this one comment, which sums up the recent US elections and the vacuum of coherent economic and foreign policy strategy that weighed so heavy on my mind two weeks ago. The dope economist Thorstein Veblen wrote this in 1922. it pretty much sums up the way i feel.

The current situation in America is by way of being something of a psychiatrical clinic. In order to come to an understanding of this situation there is doubtless much else to be taken into account, but the case of America is after all not fairly to be understood without making due allowance for a certain prevalent unbalance and derangement of mentality, presumably transient but sufficiently grave for the time being. Perhaps the commonest and plainest evidence of this unbalanced mentality is to be seen in a certain fearsome and feverish credulity with which a large proportion of the Americans are affected.


 Brad

partnerships

We have a partner in Denmark, the KaosPilots School. It's an amazing program of graduate study in creativity and innovation, and the administration, faculty, students, and alums are all friends of ours. A bit over a year ago, Andy (one of the two founders of Play) and Uffe (founder of the KaosPilots) developed their "top ten" of attributes of a good business partner. Here's their list:


  1. offers logical, simple solutions to complicated problems

  2. builds bridges between "traditional" and "new"

  3. economically, organizationally, and culturally sustainable

  4. has a stakeholder attitude and win/win perspective

  5. forms new and surprising alliances

  6. values a learning and success curve for all involved

  7. has insights and systems that can last after project ends

  8. develops professional and personal relationships for all involved.

  9. gives a really good story of curiosity, engagement and hope

  10. priority is given to beauty, music, and the power of life



What can you add to the list? What do you think makes a good business partner?

who / what / why

At Play we create brands, strategies, new products, and better cultures for Fortune 100 companies. Our formula for creativity: "Look at more stuff. Think about it harder." Pure Content is one place where we do that, daily.

the cool kids' table

Ben Domenech
(politics, football, and a boatload of know-how)

Creative Generalist
(if Pure Content had a doppelganger ...)

Heath Row
(punk + business
+ creativity = Heath)

search

go go gadget google:



stuck in an airport

architecture
A Pattern Language

business
Creative Company
Orbiting the Giant Hairball
The Ultimate Book of Business Creativity

life
The Little Prince

philosophy
Wittgenstein's Poker

physics
The Dancing Wu Li Masters

sociology
The Tipping Point

new to you

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see our neighbors
Comments by: YACCS