July 22nd, 2007


[reviews] Mainspring on Fast Forward

Colleen Cahill at Fast Forward Contemporary Science Fiction has reviewed Mainspring
Powell's | Amazon ]. Text version of interview here.

Once again I have found a book that makes me go " Wow!". This is a novel that more than entertains, it takes you places you never knew existed, even in the human imagination.

Also, they ran a video interview with me in January, 2007.

[politics] Branding, that's the problem. Branding.

Washington Post on branding the war:

In the advertising world, brand identity is everything. Volvo means safety. Colgate means clean. IPod means cool. But since the U.S. military invaded Iraq in 2003, its "show of force" brand has proved to have limited appeal to Iraqi consumers, according to a recent study commissioned by the U.S. military.

The key to boosting the image and effectiveness of U.S. military operations around the world involves "shaping" both the product and the marketplace, and then establishing a brand identity that places what you are selling in a positive light, said clinical psychologist Todd C. Helmus, the author of "Enlisting Madison Avenue: The Marketing Approach to Earning Popular Support in Theaters of Operation." The 211-page study, for which the U.S. Joint Forces Command paid the Rand Corp. $400,000, was released this week.

Helmus and his co-authors concluded that the "force" brand, which the United States peddled for the first few years of the occupation, was doomed from the start and lost ground to enemies' competing brands. While not abandoning the more aggressive elements of warfare, the report suggested, a more attractive brand for the Iraqi people might have been "We will help you."

You know, I've worked in marketing much of my adult life in one form or another, and I really do understand the critical importance of brand management in a consumer setting. But this...wow...

[personal] Off to see the momo

Off shortly to a momo feast at Casa deedop and Chef Chopper. It's been a whacky day hereabouts, with appliance midadventures with lillypond, doing handyman stuff for my dad, my aunt dropping by, lasirenadolce returning from Florida and whatnot.

We will be collectively cooking at Casa deedop, with all kinds of folks on hand, including the_child, lasirenadolce, tillyjane, her sister (my aunt) M, my semi-ex-stepbrother S, and Dad.