Wednesday, July 23, 2014
Connected Passivity And The Internet Of Things In A Symbology World
For a long time, barcode identification type symbols (linear barcodes, PDF417, 2-D/QR Codes, 3-D/PM Codes) have been an accepted way to keep track of the movement of objects, identifying content and pricing, and a really good way of processing transactions in a business environment for efficiency and profit.
Through the advent of radio signal enabled personal communications devices with a camera (computers, phones, smartphones, and etc.), businesses found many ways to reach out and grab the attention of consumers by connecting them to promotional and other functional ways to reach out to generate sales/brand loyalty in a connected environment.
When one combines the expansion of cloud services as a way to further connect people with the control and access to information of the world around them, this "Internet Of Things" TCPIP address environment is beginning to include ... well, everything active, and more importantly ... inactive.
This excerpted and edited from Information Week -
The Internet of (Passive) Things
IoT is not only about sensors, actuators, and connected thermostats - manufacturers need to incorporate all bar-coded products into their plans
By Lori MacVittie - 7/23/2014 | 09:06 AM - InformationWeek
As someone who suffers from celiac disease, I rely on all sorts of tricks to ensure I don't accidentally become "glutenized" (as my six-year-old calls it). One of those tools is an app on my iPhone that reads a barcode and then consults a database to determine whether or not the product in question is safe -- meaning it does not contain gluten.
The effectiveness of this app relies on two things: the people who maintain the barcode database, and the reliability of the information provided by the manufacturer. While it's not perfect because of the tenuous relationship between the two, the lag time involved in updating product information, and the confusion as to what constitutes "gluten-free" across the food industry, I generally listen to the app. If it indicates there might be gluten in a product, I don't buy it. Period.
Now, many folks won't consider this app and its backend process part of the Internet of Things. The products themselves are not in any way "connected" to the Internet or any mobile network, nor does the application communicate directly in any way with the products. I must manually scan the bar code to initiate communication between the app and its database (which lives somewhere "out there" on the Internet) to determine whether or not I should purchase a given product.
But just because it's not directly connected does not mean it's not a part of the big picture. The fact is, it isn't feasible to sensor- or Internet-enable everything. Food is clearly one of those categories that simply wouldn't be cost effective or realistic to connect directly to the Internet of Things. But that doesn't mean food -- and other consumables -- can't participate via other directly connected "things."
Barcodes, QR codes, or any kind of "code" imprinted on a product can certainly participate in the IoT, albeit in passive mode. That means they are not constantly active; they must be brought into the conversation through the use of some other connected device.
I call it passive tethering; you can call it what you will. Whatever the terminology, it's important to realize that the IoT will not be comprised solely of active, always-on "things." There will be hundreds of thousands of passively connected things that will ultimately change the way consumers act, make purchasing decisions, and go about their daily lives.
Producers that affix codes to products (that means, well, just about all of you) should consider that it is nigh impossible to prevent the participation of these products in the Internet of Things through mechanisms as described above, even if you wanted to. Third-party applications will find a way to leverage barcodes and other identifying data to provide value to consumers.
Ensuring consumers can access information from passively tagged products is far more difficult than providing links to actively participating products because you don't control the third-party applications or things through which consumers will seek it. That means you've got to ensure that those third-party applications or things have easy access to the data.
That's right, you've got to make that data accessible -- probably through an API.
The right API design will ensure you have visibility into queries regarding your product and, if you design it right, their purchasing requirements. That's valuable insight you can use to make marketing and production plans. It can help shape business decisions regarding whether or not a market exists for your product within a certain demographic or with specific health-related criteria.
The Internet of (Passive) Things is going to be just as influential and important to the future of business as its constantly connected counterpart. Ignore it at your peril.
No matter the specific reason a person may have to insist on timely information expanded through cloud based services, businesses who are pro-active in this expansion of the "Symbology" of things ... ALL THINGS ... will benefit over their competitors through increased contact with their target market.
Behold the power of expanding connectivity to passive items through resident symbology (linear barcodes, PDF417, 2-D/QR Codes, 3-D/PM Codes), as well as all things TCPIP addressed - Internet of Things!
Monday, March 24, 2014
|Panel assembled at the Petersen Automotive Museum for "Social Media: Supercharging The Automotive Industry" held Tuesday, March 18, 2014. Image Credit: Edmund Jenks (2014)|
How Most Organizations Are Missing The Boat On Integrated Social Media
The event was well attended and the panelists informative. One point that may have been missed is that Social Media sites on the web are structured as stand-alone silos.
"Social Media: Supercharging the Automotive Industry"
Tuesday, March 18, 2014 from 6:30 PM to 9:00 PM
Presented by Social Media Club Los Angeles at the Petersen Automotive Museum
How do the automotive industry’s top social media marketers go from 0 to 140 on Twitter while customizing posts on Facebook for their target audience? Find out as Social Media Club Los Angeles presents “Social Media: Supercharging the Automotive Industry.”
The panel will share their expertise on what’s under the hood in auto industry social media while discussing what fuels engagement. As one of the leading industries utilizing social media, hear what these trendsetters have to say and how their tools and skills can be universally applied across the sphere of social media users.
Most organizations embrace, in a reactive fashion, each of these silos individually. A stronger position an organization can take is to attempt to be pro-active and stitch activity that weaves together these silo platforms into a message that can drive traffic and resonates into the community this business effort is trying to reach.
|Social Media Club's event panel, moderator, and event hashtag. Image Credit: Edmund Jenks (2014)|
On Twitter, for example, most do not know the real intention and use of #HASHTAGS … these words or acronyms preceded by a ‘NUMBER’ or 'HASH' sign (#) are used to index or guide a 140 character conversation to a community that is tuned-in on tracking said #HASHTAG. This definition, or point-of-order, was not mentioned, developed, or explored during the course of the conversation delivered by the panel.
Which begs the question - How can a communications organization be pro-active and stitch activity that weaves together these silo social media platforms into a syndicated message strategy that can drive traffic and can resonate into the community this business effort is trying to reach?
[Reference - and more photos - Here]
Tuesday, March 18, 2014
Clarity Digital Group (Examiner/NowPublic) And It’s Uncivil Corporate Culture
Embedded in this posting is an article that notes an earthquake of a different nature (On March 17th, LA was hit with a 4.4 earthquake which jolted this author out of bed) and it exposes the corporate culture of a journalistic enterprise run by J-School graduates over the closure of a New Media hallmark after its purchase and mismanagement through to its process of “Going Dark”.
The issue centers on the process of how Clarity Digital Group (Examiner) out of Denver, CO decided to cease the operations of NowPublic – Crowd-Powered News at the end of 2013 and the defense of the process they employed.
This excerpted and edited from Politisite -
NowPublic – Were Intellectual Property Rights ignored?
Karl Gotthardt - March 17, 2014
Karl Gotthardt - March 17, 2014
NowPublic was a crowd-sourced citizen journalism site based in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, founded by Michael Tippett, Leonard Brody and Michael E. Meyers in 2005.
In addition to its contributors, NowPublic also had a content-sharing agreement with the Associated Press. The crowd-sourced site was so successful that Time Magazine called NowPublic one of the 50 Best Websites of 2007.
Maryanne Murray Buechner of Time Magazine stated:
Mainstream media types may gripe about the absence of safeguards ensuring the validity of news reported by the blogosphere, but nowhere are the merits of citizen journalism more apparent than at NowPublic. At this "participatory news network," a.k.a. bastion of "crowd-powered media," anyone can write a story, or upload images, audio or video.Whatever gets the most votes from the reading masses—the site gets about 1 million unique visitors per month—ends up as the lead story. (NowPublic has "guest editors," "wranglers" and an "actual news guy" who keep an eye on things, giving advice to contributing reporters and shepherding the best, most timely stuff through, but nobody on staff makes actual editing changes to the content.)NowPublic now counts nearly 97,000 contributing reporters in more than 140 countries around the world. During Hurricane Katrina, NowPublic was there; eight contributors filed on-the-scene reports from London's Heathrow Airport during the August 2006 terrorism lockdown—while the regular press was forced to wait outside. On June 6 NowPublic's coverage of a storm in Oman made it to the top of the AOL and Yahoo news sites.
In September 2009 NowPublic was acquired by Clarity Digital Group. Clarity is solely owned by the Anschutz company, an investment company located in Denver, Colorado. According to reports, Leonard Brody assumed the position of President of the Clarity Digital Group and Michael Tippet became the CEO of NowPublic after the sale.
In December 2013 Clarity closed the NowPublic site and redirected it to www.examiner.com.
On 27 December 2013, Clarity Digital Group took NowPublic, a successful crowd-sourced citizen journalism site, off the web and failed to give notice to contributors to permit them to recover their intellectual property. While Clarity is within their right to remove any of its sites off the web, NowPublic contributors maintain that they should have received notice in order to recover their intellectual property.
NowPublic's Terms of Service stated in part:
"Unless otherwise stated for specific Services, You will retain ownership and all related rights in any original information or other content that you publish on the Site or through the Services. In the event of any inconsistency between the provisions of these Terms of Service and the applicable license terms, these Terms of Service shall prevail to the extent of such inconsistency and such license terms shall be deemed to have been modified, in writing, by NowPublic and You."
However, unlike other crowd-sourced sites, Clarity claims that it has no obligation to permit access to the NowPublic content.
In a reply to Rhonda Mangus, a former NowPublic Advisory Council Member/Producer, Clarity Digital Group stated through its attorney, Deborah Shinbein:
Although we understand that the shut-down of NowPublic.com may have come as a surprise to you, we are baffled by your assertion that NowPublic or its parent company may owe you (or any other contributor to the site) any sort of reports, opportunity to access content, or anything else with regard to the site.You have not been under a contract through which you were eligible to receive payments for your contributions since 2010, and any reporting obligations NowPublic previously had with regard to your contributions (if any) would have ended at the time your status as a paid contributor to NowPublic.com was terminated. We did provide notice to the individuals who were current (or recent) paid contributors to NowPublic.com, however you were clearly not among that group of individuals.
Attorney Shinbein's response speaks for itself and, among other matters, clearly raises the question as to why intellectual property rights were ignored by Clarity Digital Group. Additionally, none of the major NowPublic contributors we contacted were notified of NowPublic's intention to go off-line.
According to the Canadian Intellectual Property Office, intellectual property is defined as follows:
Intellectual property (IP) refers to the creations of the mind, such as inventions, literary and artistic works, as well as symbols, names, pictures, designs and models used in business. Patents, trade-marks, copyright, industrial designs, integrated circuit topographies and plant breeders' rights are referred to as "IP rights." Just as rights are acquired when a building or land is purchased, IP rights are "property" in the sense that they are based on the legal right to exclude others from using the property. Ownership of the rights can also be transferred.Source: Intellectual Property Office
It should not come as a surprise to Clarity Digital Group that those who contributed to NowPublic would want to recover the content they contributed.
Current Industry Practice
It has been common industry practice for crowd-sourced sites to give notification to contributors and archive contributed material. As an example one can highlight Vizify's notification to its contributors which, unlike NowPublic, warned its contributors of its purchase by Yahoo and its impending closure.
While Vizify gave its contributors an opportunity to recover their material, no such notification was given to NowPublic contributors, nor was a sunset period granted to retrieve their intellectual property as was highlighted in the NowPublic Terms of Service.
As a consequence, references are gone, bios disappeared and personal footage and videos are unavailable and the tens-of-thousands of back-links to NowPublic content placed on sites over the World Wide Web.
Maireid Sullivan, a former NowPublic economics guest editor, noted that the Vizify notification to its supporters and contributors should be held up as an example of how to do business in the digital age.
To that, Edmund Jenks former NowPublic feature manager related:
When I first woke up and read the attached notice I thought to myself "Who the heck is Vizify?" than I realized that it was forwarded as a minimum example on how to close down an ongoing News Media web and portal.Yes! This should be held up as an appropriate and civil way on a way a company treats those they provided a service for and had a relationship with.
NowPublic did not provide this opportunity to its contributors, nor was there ever any appreciation for the contributed material and its contribution to the success of the company. Those contributors, who have moved on to other sites, can no longer use the links to their articles, nor do they have the ability to republish them elsewhere. Nowpublic's blog syndication caused thousands of 'dead links' as Nowpublic linked each key word and a link to the story back to their personal sites. This action was beneficial as long as the links were live. Now that those links are 'dead', Google ranks such stories lower in search engines.
Aside from any legal considerations, Clarity Digital Group should do the right thing and make the material available to its former contributors.
"It's unfortunate that Clarity Digital Group has taken such a position. It should serve as a warning to present writers for Examiner that they could find themselves in the same situation if the Examiner decides to 'go dark' in the future."
To be direct, the corporate culture at Examiner is at the very least uncivil … and at worst vindictive. It is as if Examiner was being dragged into New Media against the wishes of the J-School trained management that conceptually implements and runs the joint.
If one were able to compare the internet savvy tools offered between the two sites – NowPublic versus Examiner – even though Examiner has improved over the years since 2009 through the purchase of NowPublic … the publishing portal and contributing community the site was constructed to serve at NowPublic would still outshine anything offered up by Examiner, Clarity Digital Group, LLC.
Of Note: Edmund Jenks (The EDJE) served as a Feature Page Manager and Editor/Contributor to NowPublic through to the time the site was shut down at the end of 2013. He was continually in the top 20 (most often in the top 10 before appointment to Feature Page Manager – Motorsports) of a cast tens of thousands of contributors and his work was seen by about 1.75 Million viewers. He currently has been a multiple title Examiner in good standing since November, 2009 and has 27 Trophies in his Clarity Digital Group participation case located on his Dashboard.
(I should have noted my viewers as 17.5 million ’cause who would know after how the site was shut down and re-directed … okay, 175 million … and so on, and so on, and so on …)
… notes from The EDJE