Kindle Fire vs. iPad – Who will win?

Wow! It now really looks like the tablet wars are spicing up which is really exciting. Amazon will let loose the Kindle Fire their answer to the Apple iPad, in November this year.

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 Now what could be better on the Kindle Fire than on the iPad I hear you asking? Well… From what I can see, not much.

It has a smaller screen, less memory, less battery life (and just these three are making me think it may not actually be worth getting one). I do admit though, I don’t have any tablet device right now, although I have been looking over the last few months, but cannot justify getting one until it has something that I will actually use on a day to day basis that I can’t really do with ALL my other Apple devices such as iPhone’s, MacBook Pro’s, AppleTV’s etc… and the list goes on.

BUT, in saying all this, when I first looked at the Kindle Fire, it actually got my interest purely because it was cheap, looks pretty good, and I can get pretty much everything on it I can on a iPad. The Kindle Fire also backs up everything on it to the Amazon cloud automatically via WiFi so you don’t loose all your data. No need to plug that baby in to a computer like every other Apple device ;)

Mashable writer Lance Ulanoff does not think it will be very successful though.

“Will it beat the Apple iPad? Unlikely”, Mr Ulanoff said.

And you know what? I tend to agree with him. Apple sold over 28 million iPads from April 2010 to June 2011.

Yours in tablets (once again),

Trend spotting: Cinemagraphs

Where I once saw GIFs flooding my RSS feeder or Tumblr feed, I’m noticing a new breed of image sauntering its way into internet culture. The Cinemagraph looks like a still image on first glance but feature a subtle area of movement. From hair blowing in the breeze, steam from a coffee cup or the sparkle of a sequin on a high-heel; the motion is “blink and you miss it”.

In an article with The Atlantic, one half of the duo behind this trend Jamie Beck says they are “something more than a photo but less than a video”. Beck (a photographer) and her partner in crime Kevin Burg (a web designer with a background in motion graphics) are based in New York and believe “there something magical about a still photograph – a captured moment in time – that can exist outside the second the shutter captures.”

What fascinates me is the subtlety of the movement. Often you have to look at the image for a moment before realising what elements has been animated. It is simple in it’s beauty. What excites me is the potential cinemagraphs have for branding and advertising for use on websites or digital campaigns. For example, look at their use during New York Fashion Week. I see it lending itself quite nicely to food, lifestyle, travel websites.

You can view Jamie and Kevin’s creations on their Tumblr, From Me To You or on their official website.


For more cinemagraphs visit:

Tripwire Magazine

Stanley Kubrick Cinemagraphs


Yours in cinemagraph,


Gruen Planet’s first episode airs tonight


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The Gruen Transfer is my favourite show. Hands down. It’s required reading (or watching) for those in our industry and gives the rest of the world an insight into what we advertisers do each day.

So naturally I’m busting with excitement for Gruen Planet which airs tonight on ABC1 at 9pm.

Over an eight-week season Gruen Planet will delve into the world of public relations – the world of ‘spin’ with Gruen Transfer host Wil Anderson and panelists Russel Howcroft and Todd Sampson.

“Persuasion is persuasion,” says Sampson, pointing out that the techniques used in PR and damage control are not dissimilar to those used to persuade consumers to buy a product.

Topics will include a proposal to run an ad during grand final week asserting that footballers should not be role models, the rebranding of Rupert Murdoch and a pitch to persuade Australians they hate the Melbourne Cup.

Tonight’s episode will focus on the political survival of prime minister Julie Gillard, described as ‘The only leader on Earth more besieged than Gaddafi’. The show will look at how she should be repositioned as a political brand but will also cover SABMiller’s acquisition of Fosters to tackle the question: How do you sell Aussie beers that are no longer Aussie? And do brands really need to worry about patriotism?

The last part of the show will ask contestants to come up with a campaign to convince Australians that they should stop expecting our footballers to be role models in the run up to grand final week for the NRL and AFL.

And for those of you miss tonight’s episode: a repeat of the show will air on Thursday at 9.30pm on ABC2 or you can catch-up with iView.

Will you be watching?

Yours in spin,


Ray Kurzweil: “Technology changes exponentially”

Iventor and Futurist Ray Kurzweil shows us in the graph below, how technology innovation is not changing in a linear way as most people assume, it changes exponentially. This means that we won’t experience 100 years of progress in the 21st century — it will be more like 20,000 years of progress.



His graph shows the number of calculations per second, for $1000 dollars of computing investment. Assuming the trend that has stayed constant for the past 100 years remains so, we can expect that a $1,000 computer will be able to conduct more calculations per second than a human brain sometime within the next 15 years. In fact Ray Kurweil predicts that by 2045 the power of computers will exceed the collective power of all human brains combined.

There has been so much change in computers and technology in just the last 60 years. Remember when Thomas Watson (Chairman of IBM, 1943) said “I think there is a world market for maybe five computers.”  Today most people have a smartphone in their pocket, a computer at home, and one at work and have multiple channels open to them on how to communicate with others.


The future is exciting and I can’t wait to implement strategies for communication that can leverage on these advances.

To read more of Kurzweil’s work, check out The Age of Spiritual Machines: When Computers Exceed Human Intelligence on Amazon or Book Depository

Yours in Technology,





Monday TED-spiration: Nurturing Creativity

I have a confession. I’ve never read Elizabeth Gilbert’s Eat,Pray, Love. I’ve never had any urge to read her story of finding herself following the breakdown of her marriage. I will confess, I begrudgingly sat through the movie adaptation of the book and it didn’t rate for me. While I can’t explain why I’m yet to be drawn to read Gilbert’s best seller, her TED talk on nurturing creativity is one of my favourite TED talks.


What is your fail-safe activity for nurturing your creativity? How do you stay fresh and driven by your ideas?

Yours in creative nurturing,


Limited edition Diet Coke rebrand

Diet Coke, currently the N0. 3 soft drink in the world (according to The Coca-Cola Company) have introduced a limited-edition design to celebrate Coca-Cola’s 125th anniversary.


The design was created by Turner Duckworth, who have produced some simple and clever designs for many of Coca-Cola’s products over the last few years (see below).

What I admire is the simplicity and boldness of just cropping in on the Diet Coke logo.

“There’s no visual fizz, no gratuitous waves, no fake swear drops, just a big-ass Diet Coke logo”, as Brand New blog put it. It’s simplicity at it’s best and is a great way of showing that a brand/product doesn’t always need all the bells and whistles to be eye-catching and inspiring. I do think the only minor downside is the placement of a smaller version of the logo three times, perhaps it’s a couple too many, for such a recognisable brand all over the world.

Whether it was intentional or not, I also like how the cropped form of the logo almost creates the word ‘ok’ when two cans are placed together. It creates a quirky and playfulness to the design, which I think is a core theme for the Coca-Cola and Diet Coke brands. It shows a bit of personality.




The following are some more of the designs developed by Turner Duckworth. I really love the bottom five cans designed for the USA Summer 2009 campaign to coincide with Independence Day. They’re fun, quirky and make me smile.

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So what do you think of the limited-edition Diet Coke rebrand?

Yours in rebranding


“Enthusiasm as it should be – Loud Shirt Day at Hear and Say”

Brio Group was recently invited to attend the launch of Loud Shirt Day at the Hear and Say Centre. After sponsoring hearing impaired, Rhylee, we’ve been actively involved in the centre’s events. One thing that really struck me walking through the Centre was seeing their interaction with the children and their parents was their enthusiasm.

Ralph Waldo Emerson, infamous American lecturer and poet once said “Nothing great was ever achieved without enthusiasm.” This is more than reflected through the Centre’s enthusiasm for what they do. Making such a positive impact on a child’s and their families lives is not a job to those involved with the Centre – it’s their passion. You can see this simply by asking the General Manager a few simple questions. It’s the communication through his words and body language. There’s a physical vibrancy that’s extremely contagious. The successful growth of the Centre and the increased contribution of the community can be relayed back to the incredible efforts of all those involved.

The enthusiasm and drive that the staff and volunteers exude at the centre is most certainly the driving force behind the achievements and contribution of the Hear and Say Centre. Upon arriving at playgroup you are instantly made aware of the ‘can do’ attitude of all involved. It’s a little bit magic :)

Yours in enthusiasm,

Henri Cartier-Bresson: The Man, The Image & The World

“During the work, you have to be sure that you haven’t left any holes, that you’ve captured everything, because afterwards it will be too late.”
– Henri Cartier-Bresson

Henri Cartier-Bresson: The Man, The Image & The World
Behind the Gare Saint-Lazare, 1932

‘Henri Cartier-Bresson: The Man, The Image and The World’ celebrates the life and work of French photographer Henri Cartier-Bresson (1908–2004), one of the most influential artists in the history of 20th century photography.

This major retrospective exhibition features some of the most famous and powerful work from the renowned photographer’s extraordinary career, which spanned over 70 years.

‘The Man, The Image and The World’ showcases some of Henri Cartier-Bresson’s most acclaimed images including iconic moments in history and intimate insights into everyday life in America, Mexico, China, Japan, Bali, India, Europe and the USSR, and portraits of many of his contemporaries in the fields of art, literature and philosophy.

This exhibition is exclusive to Brisbane from 27 August – 27 November 2011. Make sure you see it before it is too late. For more information visit Queensland Art Gallery

Yours in influential artists,

The Rabbit Hole Ideation Cafe opening soon…

I’ve recently stumbled across the Facebook page for a new cafe and it caught my eye. Set to open soon, the West End cafe combines my two great interests: design and coffee. The Rabbit Hole Ideation Cafe will be a space for creative types to meet, share ideas, tackle briefs and brainstorm concepts.

The cafe will provide individual workstations of three varieties:

  • drop in desks for once off visits
  • semi-permanent desks if you go there on a part time basis
  • long term desks, booked per month.

All desks are equipped with power to plug in your laptop, internet connection, but best of all… $2 coffees! And it’s not just any coffee, it’s specialty coffee brewed by champion barista, Tim Adams.

The Rabbit Hole Ideation cafe also includes a board room, which can be booked to meet with clients, brainstorm ideas or collaborate with a team of creatives. The board room will have blank walls and designers will be encouraged to use the walls as a blank canvas to write/draw/scribble their ideas and thoughts.

I love that this new concept cafe is encouraging creativity in Brisbane. Can’t wait for it to open!

Yours in ideas and coffee,


A manifesto for business

Clare Lancaster’s manifesto may be labeled as a manifesto for “Women in Business”, but it really is applicable for everyone in business and everyday life.


Clare says: “It’s a collection of words to live by for women who want to make their own path.”

You can download your copy to use as a desktop or to print out to place on your wall for daily inspiration here. If you like this design by Clare she is also about to launch stevie and three, where you will be able to order customisable typographic posters online that will be designed, made to order and printed in London (where Clare now lives). Visit Stevie & Three to be kept up to date on the launch.

What are your words to do business by? What drives you each day?

Yours in words to live by,