Glad to be working for Asics

Glad to be working for Asics, a brand driven by its japanese culture and passionate, serious-runners.

At the moment, I’m going to be busy with the launch of  My Asics: a lean, training service, supporting people to run smarter, get better and avoid injuries. The Institute of Sports Science in Kobe has done significant research with real runners, and has produced a set of training plans that consist the backbone of My Asics.

Preparing for a Marathon myself, and having used a number of online, training services, I can tell how disappointing the experience has been with flashy webpages, empty of content…I guess it’s about time to take runners a little bit more serious, and give them what they really want…

A social approach to energy metering: the EnergyMentor (ERSCP)

A keynote on the paper I presented for the ERSCP conference “Knowledge collaboration & learning for sustainable innovation” in TUDelft on 26th of February 2010. The study was carried out for my MSc. graduation project at the faculty of Industrial Design at TUDelft.


“Branding as usual” Vs. “Brand Driven Innovation”: 2

I’m glad to see Eric Roscam’s book, Brand Driven Innovation, coming out. Eric together with Jan Buijs were one of the most inspiring, influential and energetic professors I had during my studies in TUDelft.

Coming from an engineering background, I had always been very skeptical with marketeers and especially with brand managers. Branding was something evil in my mind; it had the power to turn people into consumers! I was really scared of it, and tried to avoid it…. However, Eric & Jan came across my way with their courses on “Brand Design Strategy” and “Product Design Strategy” and they really changed my view on it.

Approaching Branding from a design perspective instead of a marketing one, the focus is switched to people again. A human centred approach calls for understanding the people’s needs and incentives, and looking for ways to meet them. In this way organizations don’t try to fool people with fake promises, but instead to fulfill these promises and be true to their customers.

Suddenly, Eric & Jan infused a kind of morality into branding like Naomi Klein did with “No Logo” making it in this way cool! Branding is not evil at all in the end. By using Design Thinking as a glue -as Eric states- a synergy between branding and innovation can be created. Design can turn a vision into value and connect organisations to users.

p.s Thank you Eric & Jan!

Favela Painting gives color in life in slums

Almost one year ago, I met by coincidence one of the Favela Painting artists in a local cafe, where their documentary about hip hop in the favelas of Rio and São Paolo for MTV was projected. That was it, Favela Painting struck me!

The duo of Haas&Hahn (Jeroen Koolhaas and Dre Urhahn) creates community-driven art interventions in Brazil by painting enormous murals in the slums of Brazil together with the local youth. In the Favela Painting projects, teenagers from the slums learn the craft of painting, while earning money at the same time, transforming their neighborhood and being proud for themselves and their community.

A really beautiful initiative that worth a visit at the site of Favela Painting and why not a donation ;)

Is Prince right or not?

Prince in his first interview to a British newspaper after 10 years, explained why he decided his new album “20Ten” to  be released in CD format only in the Mirror, while there’ll be no downloads anywhere in the world because of his ongoing battles against internet abuses. Prince has banned YouTube and iTunes from using any of his music and has even closed down his own official website. He says: “The internet’s completely over. I don’t see why I should give my new music to iTunes or anyone else. They won’t pay me an advance for it and then they get angry when they can’t get it.“[…] “The internet’s like MTV. At one time MTV was hip and suddenly it became outdated. Anyway, all these computers and digital gadgets are no good…

Are Prince’s arguments against iTunes and Youtube justifiable?

Well telling from the following infographic, I guess yes they are…The promises and hopes for a fairer distribution system for music with Web 2.0 seem to have been too idealistic and romantic. The Long Tail story by Chris Anderson,  and the “economics of abundance,” or else how supply and demand are connected through technology and the Internet seem to favor so far only  iTunes, Rhapsody, and Spotify. Artists receive only a tiny fragment as “thecynicalmusician” describes in his post (where the data of this infographic are coming from).  As another more cynical swedish artist, Magnus Uggla, who pulled his music off Spotify states: “I’d prefer to be raped by Pirate Bay than played on Spotify”. It seems that music streaming is not about fighting piracy, but about companies becoming pirates themselves…I’m ashamed as I have been a supporter and occasionally a subscriber of both of and Spotify…

The Economics of the World Cup

Click on the image to see the infographic [source]

What is gonna be the future of photography?

Watching the incredible slow motion replays during the World Cup 2010, makes you wonder how photography will look like in a couple of years?

The ultra-slow motion cameras that are used in the tournament can shoot action at more than 1 million frames per second, compared with about 30 frames per second in a regular camera, providing a smoother, more detailed slow-motion picture (source). As a result, the viewers can live like never before the passion of the game by watching the agony in the player’s face, “feeling” the power of a tackling, and “living” the joy of a goal scored. Sometimes, the replays are so good that can remind a picture by  Robert Capa

This makes you think  that photography as we know it is probably gonna change… Photo cameras might become specialized video devices that can take a “picture” of a couple of seconds with much more  frames per second. Photo cameras might  look like more Flip Video or cell phones than today’s DSLRs…The user will only have to take a short video, and then in ultra-slow motion select the moment of the picture s/he wants to capture, crop the frame and that’s it! Photography might become video editing…