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Archive for August, 2011

  • Encapsulation, Tree Rings & Why the Future is Driven By the Past

    19th August 11

    Posted by Saneel Radia

    Posted in Uncategorized


    Author: David Bryant, Creative Strategist, Google

    ‘The future… doesn’t arrive all at once.’
    —Sid Mead, futurist, visionary, creator of Bladerunner

    Booting up a PC

    When we first boot up a PC, we take a step back in time.

    The very first instructions that a PC executes when powered up are, in computing terms, ancient history. Called the Instruction Set, they were etched into the modern PC’s chip by its distant ancestor decades ago, like hieroglyphics on a pyramid chamber wall. And like hieroglyphics, they are understood by the very few.

    The next step a PC takes is to invoke its Microcode. Microcode is fascinating. When a PC first flips on, it is phenomenally stupid. It has no memory, no instructions to execute and isn’t even aware of what devices it is connected to.

    It’s a little like the film Memento. The computer wakes with no memory and a few arcane instructions written onto its hand. These very few instructions tell it how to follow more instructions, and so on until the computer gradually becomes less stupid. It all starts with these microscopically small lines of code invoking the 1978 Instruction Set.

    The majority of the Microcode is written by the designers and engineers of the chip. So the PC starts to run code from a chip designed a few years ago, but running an instruction set from a time where Jimmy Carter is one year in, the Berlin wall is yet to come down, no-one has heard of the internet, and MC Hammer is 10 years away from being famous.

    Forward to the BIOS

    So the modern Microcode tells the PC to load the BIOS. Suddenly we leap forward in time to 2005, in the case of my home PC, to when the BIOS was written.

    Invoking the BIOS is a little like putting the PC into a coma state.
    The basic things like breathing and heart rate get started but that is all. In other words, there’s power on in the basement but nothing on in the control room. The BIOS also tells the PC where its arms and legs are (or where its keyboard and screen are), and how much memory it has and so on.

    Back to DOS

    Then the BIOS tells the PC to load DOS. Now we really jump back. Suddenly it’s 1982, I am 12 and Spandau Ballet’s ‘True’ is top of the charts.

    Actually DOS was written way back in the seventies and changed very little after about 1995. It’s a quick simple language that allows the PC to load a modern operating system like Windows 7. Hence its original name ‘QDOS’ which stood for ‘Quick and Dirty Operating System.’ That lasted until Bill Gates acquired it for Microsoft, and changed the letter ‘D’ to mean ‘Disk,’ presumably for commercial reasons.

    So DOS loads, sets a few environment variables, loads whatever version of Windows, and we’re transported to somewhere in the aughties. It’s taken us 45 seconds to come 30 years. But it’s not over yet.
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  • SXSW 2012: What BBH is Planning & Why We Hope We’re Worth A Vote

    17th August 11

    Posted by Saneel Radia

    Posted in awesomeness, sxsw

    Photo by @saneel via @instagram, SxSW 2011

    Although it seems insanely early every year, it’s time to start voting for panels at SxSW. Instead of spamming our professional and personal feeds with requests for support, we’re continuing a tradition we began last year of consolidating all of our potential panels into a single post.

    So, if any of the below seems mildly interesting, we’d greatly appreciate a vote. All of the summaries below click-thru to the appropriate panel picker page at sxsw.com. Regardless, we’re quite excited to attend to hear what others have to say. We value the experience every year, and as always we digest everything with the benefit of context you all as the loyal Labs community provide us.

    Skynet vs. Mad Max: Battle for the Future

    In this session, our own Mel Exon (@melex) and Google’s Tom Uglow (@tomux) will discuss two possible futures of the web:

    1. A highly controlled algorithm-driven web where people and brands are matched perfectly via formula and AI, in a spam-free nirvana.
    2. An ongoing battle of people and brands seeking to be discovered, creating an open web with neutral techn partners and real-world spaces where tech doesn’t penetrate.

    Find out more, vote and add your support here.


    Chief Innovation Officers Defend Their Titles

    The topic of this panel was born of conversation frequently discussed on our blog in 2011: do agencies really need someone to run innovation? In this session four innovation leaders, including our Saneel Radia (@saneel) and Labs founder (now client at Google Creative Lab) Ben Malbon (@malbonnington), will answer hard questions about the value of such a role, what it actually entails, and what makes a good candidate to play the part. The panel also includes Edward Boches of Mullen (@edwardboches), Dave Armano of Edelman (@armano) and David Erixon (@dexodexo), founder of Hyper Island.

    Find out more, vote and add your support here.


    The South By Shark Tank: Pitch Your Big Idea

    This panel features Neil Munn, Global Head of BBH Zag, along with other ad industry investment professionals. In this session, the audience is invited to present their elevator pitches and receive high-level advice on how to prime the proposals for investment. Press coverage for the most attractive investments is built in via our friends at PSFK (@psfk).

    Find out more, vote and add your support here.


    Game My Brand

    BBH planner Tim Jones (@timjonestweet) will outline “gaming brands,” an approach to brand strategy built on gaming principles. This approach represents a fundamental shift from building brands as message transmission devices, to building brands as behaviour change systems. This talk will feature new material built on content Tim previously covered in his TEDx talk of the same name.

    Find out more, vote and add your support here.


    Your Story Sucks! Saving Story in the Digital Age

    In this session, three BBH storytellers (including @jamescmitchell, @writingstudio, and @depechetoad) from different backgrounds share the results of in-field storywriting experiments from standup to novel-writing to radio plays to alternate reality games. They’ve tried it all, and are going to try and explain what works. This is not a panel – think of it as a three-man show. This is a theoretical session, with practical homework.

    Find out more, vote and add your support here.


    My Mom Plays That: How Women Game-Change Gaming

    As women play casual games in ever-increasing numbers, this session will examine what this means for the development of casual and traditional games. It will specifically look at how the psychology of women influences the psychology of game developers. The purpose of this presentation by BBH social media manager Claire Coady (@claire_coady) is to examine how women are influencing the seismic shifts underway across the gaming landscape.

    Find out more, vote and add your support here.

  • Keep Aaron Cutting

    11th August 11

    Posted by Mel Exon

    Posted in People, technology

    Author: Pablo Marques (@pablo_marques), Creative Director, BBH London & BBH Labs

    Please donate here: http://keepaaroncutting.blogspot.com/

    A few weeks ago we started the UK edition of The BBH Barn program (@BBHBarn).

    The Barn is a program for our interns: its aim to expand and mix both the power advertising wields and youth’s inherent energy, then channel both for good.

    As our team went about trying to find a problem they felt passionate about solving, we were all surprised by the absurdity of the past week’s riots in the UK.

    With the riots came all of the negativity towards todays youth and the use of social media technology to mobilise people.

    There it was, we had our problem. We wanted to show the world that youth and technology could also be a force for good, this was exactly what The Barn was about. The team came up an idea. Why not use the force for good to help someone that was neither young nor technology savvy.
    hd sex We set up Keep Aaron Cutting.

    Aaron is an 89 years old barber who has been in the Tottenham area for 41 years whose business was ransacked during the riots. He has no insurance and no way of rebuilding his shop. His livelihood is devastated.

    “I will probably have to close because I haven’t got insurance and I can’t afford the repairs,” – Aaron

    If we could restore Aaron’s faith in youth and technology that might not solve the problem, but would be the perfect way to start.

    If you want to help, please donate or share. And if you’d like to, follow the story via the site and via #keepaaroncutting on Twitter.

    If you have any questions about BBH Barn in the UK please contact me @pablo_marques or via email.

    For media enquiries about BBH‘s involvement, please contact Sarah Pollard.

    The Team:

    BBH Barners

    Bjorn and Sophie @bjornandsophie
    Omid Fard @OmidFard

    Mentors

    Kimberly Gill @kimmeh_gill
    Mareka Carter @marekacarter
    Simon Pearse @ThisIsMurray
    Ben Shaw @BenShaw
    Mel Exon @melex

  • What People in Brands Can Learn From People in Bands

    5th August 11

    Posted by Mel Exon

    Posted in Brands, music

    Author: Neil Barrie (@neilbazza), Director, ZAG

    Images via superiorpics.com and brandrepublic.com

    I spent the first half of my adult life to date, playing in bands and the second half planning brands, most recently at Zag, the brand ventures division of BBH.

    After an awkward adjustment period where I tried to deny all existence of my previous life and its accompanying streaked mullet jpegs, I’ve recently been finding that I actually learned a lot of useful things in those years in the Highbury Garage. Here they are:

    # 1 Develop your dynamics

    Listen to any AC/DC, song, especially Back in Black and you are listening to a lesson in dynamics. The space, the drums, the shifts, the CRUNCH – you can’t help but be moved by it. Loads of massive rock tracks owe a lot to soft/loud dynamics from Babe I’m gonna leave you to Teenage Dirtbag. Boys in particular like this sort of thing. The laws of rock dynamics are directly applicable to any presentation.  It’s a good discipline to think “where’s the bit where the chords come crashing in?” and “how can I make this section feel more like ACDC?”

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  • Hiring: Integrated Producer for BBH London

    2nd August 11

    Posted by Mel Exon

    Posted in People

    Author: Louise Ablewhite, HR Manager, BBH London

    Who we’re after

    The ultimate T-shaped Producer.  Someone with an in-depth knowledge of a production discipline (film, interactive, print, mobile, content, AFP, events/experiential, gaming, publishing), with broader knowledge across at least one other specialism. You’ll be responsible for working with the Creative Department konulu sex to realise their ideas through development and craft – and to manage the process through to delivery / first release and beyond.
    What you’ll be like

    Fearless and fun to work with, passionate about the work and a great communicator – able to build great relationships with Strategy and Team Management, be client facing and campaign aware. Above all, you’ll be happiest collaborating with multiple partners and stakeholders (both internally and externally).  Challenges and unknowns must be embraced and relished.

    Responsibilities/key attributes

    • Be able to demonstrate excellent creative and editorial judgement
    • An appetite to learn and develop further is a must, with a passion for new ways of working and outputs
    • Comfortable & confident with unknown territory/never been done before projects & able to navigate through it
    • A keen an eye for detail and a strong background in managing complex project and budgets
    • Confident in managing clients directly
    • Able to manage complex legal negotiations with several parties
    • Entrepreneurial: actively seek new revenue generating opportunities & business models
    • In-depth knowledge of how other brands & media owners are operating in this space
    • Good people skills and ability to build relationships across all disciplines and with third party partners
    • Other key attributes: Hardworking, energetic, collaborative, good organisational skills, sound production and cultural knowledge.

    If this sounds like your kind of job, we want to hear from you. Please send a cv/resume, details or link to integratedproducer@bbh.co.uk.

  • To sleep, to dream

    2nd August 11

    Posted by Mel Exon

    Posted in Brands

    Author: Jim Carroll, BBH London Chairman

    Girl Sleeping, by Tamara de Lempicka

    ‘O sleep,why dost thou leave me?
    Why thy visionary joys remove?
    O sleep again deceive me,
    To my arms restore my wand’ring love’

    I recently attended a concert in which these words of Congreve were sung in a beautiful Handel aria. I’m sure we can all relate to the sentiment: sleep is a place of joyful deceptions and re-found loves; it’s a place for escaping, forgetting, recovering, refocusing. However harsh the work environment, however stressful the unrelenting day, I have always been sustained by the promise of sleep, its welcoming embrace, its warm repose. In fact I have a singular talent for napping at will and I have inherited from my mother the habit of the Sunday afternoon kip. I like to drift off on the sofa, newspaper on my lap, to the sound of children’s chatter and roller bags from the pavement outside.

    I have long felt that sleep is an area of untapped opportunity for brands. We spend a third of our lives sleeping, but we’re increasingly concerned by our ability to get enough of it, at the right quality. One can’t help but be underwhelmed by the plethora of scented candles, quack remedies and orthopaedic pillows that currently constitute the ‘sleep sector’. Can’t we do better than this? Surely space is not the final frontier; it’s sleep. Read full post