Nice Article on Marketing Globally

Here is a link to a nice article from CE Vision magazine about marketing globally.  This article is presented in a very nice electronic magazine.  You can click on the article from the front page of the magazine (you will see what I mean when you go there).  There is also an interesting article that explains what “Free Trades Zones” are.  Enjoy!

Starbucks Solicits Customer Product Ideas

I received an e-mail from Starbucks asking me to contribute ideas to the company.  Starbucks is not something I feel passionate about, so doubt they’ll be hearing from me soon.  Anyhow, check out the e-mail they sent out.


“Got a great idea? Share it! Massage chairs with latte holders? Virtual reality coffee tastings? We know you love Starbucks. We also know you have some ideas to help make your Starbucks Experience even better. So tell us. Introducing MyStarbucksIdea. Come be a part of the community. Share your ideas, talk about them, vote on other people’s ideas, and then watch as the best have a shot at reality. No idea’s too simple or too outrageous. We’re really excited about what we’re going to see—we hope you are too.”


(I had to remove the graphics from this cut-and-paste because the e-mail was unreadable on screen.  This was also the case when I received the e-mail.  Sigh … Starbucks used frames to display the graphics content and it barfed hard.)

Changes at My Local Best Buy

Apple and Dell have invaded my local Best Best store.  The Apple area wasn’t to my liking.  It consisted of a huge thick monolith with the Apply logo emblazened on it.  In front of the monolith was a simple table on a black carpet with 4 Apple PCs and/or laptops on it.  The back of the wall had no cubby holes or display space for other Apple products, accessories, or cross sales merchandise.  I felt it was a waste of perfectly good monolith space.  Dell had a small side of an aisle that they displayed PC’s on.  They had a small selection that consisted of a low end model, some ordinary looking PCs, and a PC will a bunch of stuff on it that looked like racing stickers, which I presume indicated some sort of gaming or high performance computer (or maybe like cars, the stickers are only for show — who knows — the aisle really didn’t grab my attention.  Dell products seriously lack style.).  HP had separate areas for PCs and laptops.  The other thing I noticed is that the shelf height was drastically lowered.  Boxes with computers and monitors are no longer stored above the PC displays.  I’m not sure whether this is to improve the feel of the aisles, to keep people from hurting themselves grabbing heavy items from high shelves, as a “loss prevention” measure, or to prevent people from leaving without talking to a store rep once they see there is not inventory for the item they want to purchase (perhaps its all four and more).  Have any of you experienced changes at your local electronic stores?

Anime I am Currently Watching

Here’s list of anime that I am currently watching.  Most of these are not licensed in the US and are available fansubbed over the ususal anime bittorrent portals.

  • “Gundam Seed” — and epic gundam (giant robot), space, soap opera
  • “Rosario + Vampire” — human accidently gets accepted into a high school for monsters.  He quickly forms a harem consisting of a Vampire, a Succubus, two witches, and an ice user.  This anime is full or humor, action, romance, and a healthly doze of fan service.
  • “Spice and Wolf”  — an adventure anime rooted in economics
  • “Rental Magica” — a young man inherents a magic users service company.  The show mostly revolves around the solving of various horror mysteries and the relationship between the young President and his employees, who all lovingly call him “Shachou.”  This is an excellent series.  I highly recommend it.  I also like the opening theme song a lot.

Coming soon:  “Vampire Knight” starts up the first week April.  The manga is wildly popular in Japan and US.  I expect this to be licensed before the season is completed :(.

Assassin's Creed

“Assassin’s Creed” = Metal Gear Solid + hand-to-hand combat.

So far my husband likes it a lot.  He said the game play and the story are quite engaging.  I watched the intro and the first tutorial and the game looks like a lot of fun.  I suppose like “Bioshock”, I will play this game after my husband completes it.

I’m currently still playing “Bioshock” (These days I’ve been spending a lot of my free time exercising my Japanese skills with manga)

My husband is rotating through Assassin’s Creed, WOW, and Call of Duty 4.

Islands Restaurant Goes High Def

Islands restaurants, known for its kitschy “Hawaii” decor, great burgers and fries, and surfing and extreme sports videos has gone high-definition.  The flat panel plasma TVs (from Panasonic) definitely created an updated feel in the restaurant without much effort.  Also, those great surfing and extreme sports videos became even more specular in widescreen high-definition.  Kudos to Islands.

This got me thinking about whether only this Islands (in Mira Mesa — a neighborhood in San Diego) did this, or whether some deal was struck with the whole chain.  If a deal was struck, who did it?  Panasonic, the content provider (Just Push Play), or some other distributor?  I, also, wonder whether the content is digitally distributed or whether they still rely on a DVD player.  Either way thinking about the whole solution, here’s what I see:

  • Viewers — the television
  • Distribution — digitally over broadband to an in store storage device so content can be rotated often
  • Storage Devices
  • Content
  • Sales of adjacent products like videos, music, and an in-home version of the channel via the Internet

Oh how wonderful!  I like it!