Hal, please open the pod bay door ….. Hal? Hal?


Disneyland Innoventions exhibit had a few glimpses into future technology, though the pace of change is now so fast that I think they have trouble capturing the “latest, greatest” stuff. Exception was a live show with ASIMO, SONY’s fantastic human sized robot. The walking and stair climbing, which are autonomous actions, were very impressive. You really got the idea you were looking at something we’ll eventually take for granted – robot helpers in the home.

Walk of Fame, Hollywood Boulevard



Walk of Fame, Hollywood Boulevard

Originally uploaded by JoeDuck.
This was Sunday, Monday was Disneyland, and today we spent the morning over at a BIG sound stage built for the film “Semi Pro”. Mostly just sitting around while the director reviewed and set up scenes, but luckily we got placed right behind the basket for some shooting so we might actually be in the picture cheering on “our” team (out in 2008). I’m sworn to secrecy about the score and the shot with 17 seconds left in the game. We had to say we’d not talk about the scenes or take any pictures.

Graumann’s is big and impressive – the hand and foot prints in front
are neat. There’s a tour of Grauman’s Chinese Theater aka Mann Theatres but we did not do that or the Kodak Theatre tour which seemed too expensive at about $15 for a half hour.

As we arrived in Hollywood on Sunday, “Meet The Robinsons” was premiering across the street at the El Capitan but we couldn’t make out any stars as they walked down a red carpet past some media.

It was cool today though to be “close” to Will and Woody as they
filmed for Semi Pro.

Overall I get the idea LA is NOT really very glamorous unless you go eat at the fancy restaurants. Hollywood and Vine is much improved with Kodak Theater and a big shopping mall structure, but Hollywood
Boulevard is still pretty dumpy with Tattoo places and such. Funny
how the big rich stars and the grimy mean streets along Hollywood and Sunset Boulevards seem to coexist so comfortably here in the smoggy sun of Southern California.

Doc Searls on Newspaper Survival


This is Doc Searls great prescription for ailing newspapers, which are threatened with extinction as online activity trumps all things offline.

However I’m not holding my breath. It was recently pointed out (can’t remember the source) that almost no innovation comes from within an industry. Rather it is outsiders who bring the innovation and then often eat the lunch of those who generally fail to adopt the new strategies.

Grauman’s Chinese Theatre



Manns Chinese Theatre

Originally uploaded by Jon_W.
Hey, you won’t see us in this picture because I *erased* about 50 pix I took here and along the walk of fame today. Thanks to Jon_W for taking a better pic than mine anyway!

However we really were hanging near Hollywood and Vine today at the Mann Theater complex, where people dressed up as movie characters are walking around.  It’s near the middle of the “Walk of Fame” with hundreds of sidewalk stars for stars of stage, screen, TV, and music.
In the courtyard of Mann’s are the hand and footprints of Marx Brothers, Greta Garbo, the cast of Star Trek, and many more.

Across the street is the El Capitan theater. Today was the premier of Disney’s “Meet The Robinsons” and there was a red carpet and a lot of press but we couldn’t recognize any of the people going in, though I’m SURE they were, like, like, so famous!

Google Advertising Rumor


I really appreciate Robert Scoble‘s great insights but I’m skeptical of the party rumor he cited today that suggests this about Google Advertising:

… fewer ads mean less revenue SHORT TERM. But long term the advertising revenue actually goes up. Why? They found their users started trusting the advertising more and were more likely to click on ads.

This is possible but seems unlikely. Heavy users are generally going to want a bunch of ads to quickly scan because Google context matching and user queries are usually not specific enough to come up with the “right” ads.

Revenue per click goes down as you add more ads at lower per click rates so it complicates things as well, but I don’t get the ‘trust’ factor cited by Robert – it just does not make sense to me that Google is effectively training people to click on ads more often by offering fewer ads.

Maybe I’m missing something in this case, but these trends are huge because online advertising is arguably the most significant change in the landscape in decades, and thanks to having accurate conversion measures we are going to see a huge shakeup in the ad world.   That’s a very good thing in an industry that is, to a large extent, based on either misleading people or, at the very least, changing their behavior opportunistically.