Email Usage Map


Trained first as a scientist, nascent artist Chris Baker creates work that explores the complex relationship between society and its technologies.

Says Chris, "I am energized by the diversity of human expression that continuously activates our vast communication networks. I am awed by the scale and varied histories of the built environment and urban infrastructure. As technologists make daily promises to improve our lives by uniting these physical and digital worlds, I attempt to make work that examines the practical implications of our increasingly networked lifestyles."

To wit, 'MyMap' is a visualization of his social network formed from 60,000 archived emails; a relational map and alternative self portrait that "reveals the innumerable relationships between me, my schoolmates, work-mates, friends and family; the intensity of the relationship is determined by the intensity of the line."

Fell free to Fwd this link to your entire social network.

Savings Rate Vs. Home Ownership

[click to enlarge]


(Source: Morgan Stanley.)

Twenty years of treating our house like a piggy bank. And we all know what happens to piggy banks.

Nat Ives in Ad Age points out that it's most likely that this 'economic readjustment' has made a permanent change in the buying habits of the masses. People will return to injecting a similar amount of money into the economy in the next couple of years, there'll be a profound change in where they spend their money, illustrated by this chart from Morgan Stanley's Mary Meeker in a presentation to the Web 2.0 Conference on Nov. 5 of '08: (see slide here: )

The key issue here is the gap between the sudden decline in the US personal savings rate in orange that began in '85 with a rise in investment in the Dow Jones in green (added by me) and the home equity increase in red and that began in '95 due to incentives introduced by 'Housing & Urban Development' (HUD). This shift of savings into 'investment opportunities' created the enormous shared risk necessary for the current crash. The steep increase in the percentage of home ownership above it's formerly stable level proved unsustainable (people who could not afford the mortgages were behind the rise). This means 'investment' in real estate will have to drop, while the losses in average peoples' investment funds has created a wound that will remain painful for many years.

The result? A market-wide shift from 'investment products' to 'savings products', along with a healthy culture shift from rampant consumerism to more level-headed spending patterns.

P&G and the globe's other major marketers are right to be concerned, this change in culture will mean permanent shifts in the sales of their high-end products. It's not that demand for these products will vanish, just that it is likely to be lower than it was. PLUS there will be much more intense scrutiny by consumers into the true value of every product and service out there, which will have an indelible effect upon the demise of 'push marketing' and the continued rise of 'pull'.

As I've often pointed out, what that means is the shift of marketing spending from traditional 'push marketing' media, formerly called ATL, to interactive, face-to-face and socially credible efforts of the kind predicted by Doc Searls and David Weinberger in chapter four of the "Cluetrain Manifesto" back in 2001: people interacting across a table laden with goods in a marketplace, just as we have for millennia.

Watch Mary Meeker's slide show

Tweet About The Hype


Before we all get too carried away with our tweets, a study of Twitter
users in Harvard Business Publishing reveals that:

Among Twitter users, the median number of lifetime tweets per user is:

a. 1
b. 55
c. 600
d. 2,800

(Answer: a)

In a typical social network, the top 10% of users account for 30% of total activity. The top 10% of Twitter users account for what percent of total activity?

a. 5%

b. 45%
c. 70%
d. 90%

(Answer: d)

So it's pretty much like Facebook really: the new toy in the playground every kid must have, then gradually gets bored with before moving on to the new-new toy.