Monday, July 16, 2007

Darwin 2.0


Darwin 2.0 is a new release that builds upon the original seminal work, thinking which helped to establish that the authentic explanation for man's development is the scientifically grounded concept of evolution.

Darwin 2.0 recognizes that evolution - the act of interacting with the environment to become better adapted - must be extended beyond the physical realm to incorporate cognitive and psychological activity.

While physical evolution takes place over many thousands of years, the pace and scope of technological and cultural change means that for people to remain in harmony with their environment and maintain a good fit, a more rapid evolution in the psychology of the species - the way of thinking - is needed.

Widespread evidence suggests this is not happening. The number of non-genetic based disorders that are emerging and the scale in which they exist are clear indications that homo sapiens sapiens is not adapting to the new world mankind has fashioned:

*Hyper-activity and attention disorders among children from a over-stimulated technology fueled media culture

*Sleep disorders from high stress work/life culture

*Depression linked to levels of stress, due to the role of technology in intensifying the pace and complexity of work, life and social demands

In today's culture of prescribed and self medication, it is no surprise that the consequences of the profound lack of adaptation to the new techno/socio/familial environment is a reliance on pharmacology. People are encouraged to accept that this is a viable remedy when all it does it treat the symptoms rather than the underlying cause: homo sapiens sapiens' limits in speed of cognititive and psychological evolution to an environment he has created for himself. A deep irony indeed.

This creates an interesting possibility for a mechanism for evolution that lies outside the scope of Darwin's original field. While evolution of a physical nature cannot be directed (it is the result of shifts that happen over a long period of time) it is fundamentally different paradigm for mental evolution. There is much progress to be made in actively equipping people with the tools to direct their mental evolution: in the form of coping strategies as well as educational psychology to expose formative minds to influences that will prepare them not just to adapt but thrive in today's world.

In the meantime, Darwin 2.0 represents a milestone in the use of cognitive sciences and psychology to assist in evolutionary adaptation of thinking to the emerging technologically oriented society.

Priced at $499 and available at fine booksellers.

Communist icongraphy for a capitalist tool

How enterprising. The self proclaimed champion of capitalism, Forbes has dusted of the iconic fist from Soviet era propaganda and re-purposed it.

The device is itself clever support for its underlying business ideology: using it represents a very entrepreneurial act. No doubt Trotsky, Lenin and Stalin are rolling around in their collective graves.

Will the common man or woman on the street be confused by this creative license and think that Forbes is extolling political virtues, or worse, that the brand has abandoned its principles? Hardly. Most young people today have such a disinterest in history that they most likely aren't even aware of the satire.

Most outdoor media are read for a matter of seconds and requires short, concise visual and verbal expressions of an idea to be fully digested. It's why icons and symbols can be so effective in these challenging environments. They represent potent devices because the meaning is so immediately and viscerally evident, short-circuiting normally longer processing times.

Sunday, July 15, 2007

Communications carpet bombing

Is there some 'rule of five' that decrees communications are more effective when repeated multiple times?

One might be mistaken for thinking so given this street vendor spotted recently on the streets of NYC.

Perhaps it is no more than a left-over legacy of pre-enlightened communications theory from the 1950s.

His advertising room at a premium, the space would be far better spent on increasing the point size for each food he promotes - increasing legibility for further away.

It might also enable enticing adjectives to be included enhancing the appeal of his wares rather than advertising the basic items.

With street vendors a commodity business in this city, it would take only modest measures to brand a seller into a more distinctive, unique provider.

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Transcending even the need for a logo

When a brand can dispense with its tradename and can be unmistakably recognized with its brand mark -logo - alone, it's made it into popular culture.
Nike's swoosh, Target's bullseye. Apple's, well apple.

But on Lexington avenue this week on two sides of a phone booth were promotions for a popular film that carried absolutely no brand name, or brand marks or even a message other than the characters from the film. The point: if you know, you're supposed to; if not you're not.

This Harry Potter is truly a cultural phenom.