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July, 2009:

Packaging Blunders

How could someone get this so very wrong?

These bananas were seen recently in a UK supermarket. Can you imagine how much more this adds to the cost; and there is no reason to claim “value-adding” like there is with peeled oranges.

Platic Packaged Bananas - UK Supermarket

Plastic Packaged Bananas - UK Supermarket

Over-packaging a product, especially as blatantly as this, should be a crime. Bananas have gone from being a healthy, convenient snack to an absolute environmental disaster [^] in one small step.

There are plenty more Un-TreeHugger-y Things [^] for you to check-out at [^] a website devoted to trying to make sustainability mainstream.

Internet: Giant Copy Machine

I have just found an interesting post by Kevin Kelly about the nature of the internet [^] – Better Than Free.

“Our digital communication network has been engineered so that copies flow with as little friction as possible. Indeed, copies flow so freely we could think of the internet as a super-distribution system, where once a copy is introduced it will continue to flow through the network forever, much like electricity in a superconductive wire…When copies are super abundant, they become worthless. When copies are super abundant, stuff which can’t be copied becomes scarce and valuable.”

The internet is designed for information flows. One of it’s key characteristics is that the flow will route around any blockages or rough spots.

Escher "Drawing Hands" 1948

Escher "Drawing Hands" 1948

It’s interesting having the internet spelled out as being a “giant copy machine”; but that has been done before. What makes this post interesting is the “Better Than Free” aspect.

To be better than free something needs to be unable to be easily copied, replicated or forged. Kevin Kelly identifies 8 qualities, “generatives”, that make a thing unique; among them are Immediacy, Accessibility and Authenticity.

If a supplier has a product that has one, or more, of these attributes then it maybe something that people will be willing to pay for rather than taking a free altenative. It will be by embracing these characteristics that businesses will be able to compete against free, and maybe even thrive in the future.

The Easter Bunny

Have you ever wondered what the Easter Bunny gets up to on the other 364 days of the year? Click through on the photo below to watch a video of his non-Easter exploits – this is one seriously bad bunny. - The Easter Bunny Hates You

Thanks Girgoyle for the link.

Walkman v iPod

I enjoyed this story about a teenager, Scott Campbell, who gave up his iPod [^] for a first generation Sony Walkman.  Scott Campbell's Walkman v iPod

Yes, cassette tape against modern electronics. At least it was a Sony, not one of the generic ones that most of us had. The verdict: big, heavy, battery-hungry, and Scott’s biggest grumble there’s no shuffle. And he didn’t even get to experience any tape munching or mangling either.

It’s amazing how the must have gadgets from the late 1970s through to the mid 1990s now seems so alien. It just makes you wonder, what’s an iPod going to look like in 25 years time? Me, I’m happy with my MiniDisc Walkman . . . for now.