Tag Archive | Knowledge

6 Sources to be Informed About the World

I am an information geek and I’m here to share the best of it. 

In this Internet age, it is extremely difficult to find the useful information which is of high quality and caters to your preferences. That is why I wanted to share with you the best information sources around. I believe in Dave Pell’s idea, that the best algorithm is human. Therefore, most of these sources are newsletters or individuals, who are passionate about knowledge.


The Next Draft
 Everything you need to know on the internet

The Managing Editor of the Internet Dave Pell daily sends a digest with 10 days most fascinating news. If I would need to choose only one source that I could read, this would be the one! All media people read it. Just name it: The Atlantic, The Economist, The New Yorker
And you should too!

 


Mattermark Daily
 All you need to know about start-ups

Mattermark has the most successful content marketing I’ve ever seen. I actually only started because my work in a start-up required to do so. If you ever think about being knowledgable about start-ups, then this is a go-to place.  



VOX.com

Explain the News

The best news site that I have ever encountered. They write about all the important affairs. And explain them. Only caveat is the fact that they are US news portal and as well coverage is focused more on their issues.
Still marvelous journalism.

 


Farnam Street Blog
 Learn to think

I obsolutely love that this guy is trying to talk about literally everything on how we can improve our thinking. He has mapped more than 100 mental models, starting from creative thinking and ending with Biases.
Just check it out, if you want to become smarter. 

 


Kottke.org
 Random highbrow cool stuff

I guess that this is already slightly specific to ones taste in the entertainment. Basically, this guy posts everything starting from slideshow on how mobile internet is changing developing countries, and ending with cool movie trailers.
Uhh… Just check it out. Love it or.. ignore it.

 


Andrew Chen
Understand what is happening in the Silicon Valley

Great essays on Tech-related start-up industry. He has written 650+ essays for The New York Times, WSJ, Wired, Fortune etc. The best guy to have the real insights from.


Here are some more nice channels definitely worth checking out:

Evergreen – gives really in-depth information regarding the business related topics. I wanted to put it in TOP 5, but forgot.

Quartz – more finance related Europe centered, high quality news source

Barking up the Wrong tree – self-development advises backed up in science from a guy, who writes to the Economist

Buffer – everything about social media strategy you need to know

Direkt Fast News – all crucial news explained in three sentences

Delve – receive movie of the week, nicely presented

lsm.lv – nice source for Latvian speaking audience

Delve – my own information dissemination platform. Exactly my work on sourcing high quality news for it, has resulted in me knowing so many great sources that can be useful for life. [Yes, it is in Latvian, however, almost all the articles are in English] 

Still. Don’t trust media, and don’t be ignorant about the world. [MARVELOUS VIDEO]


P.s. I consciously tried to escape from more obvious sources like The Economist, Financial Times, The Atlantic etc. I still believe in them being high quality news sources.  

 Written by: Gustavs Upmanis

<p style=”color: #000000;”><a href=”https://medium.com/evergreen-business-weekly”>Evergreen</a&gt; – gives really indepth information regarding the business related topics. I wanted to put it in TOP 5, but forgot.</p>
<p style=”color: #000000;”><span style=”line-height: 1.2;”><a href=”/admin/modules/categories/quartz.com”>Quartz</a> – more finance related Europe centred, high quality news source</span></p>
<p style=”color: #000000;”><span style=”line-height: 1.2;”><a href=”http://www.bakadesuyo.com/blog/”>Barking up the Wrong tree </a>- self-development advices backed up in science from a guy, who writes to the Economist</span></p>
<p style=”color: #000000;”><span style=”line-height: 1.2;”><a href=”https://blog.bufferapp.com/”>Buffer</a&gt; – everything about social media strategy you need to know</span></p>
<p style=”color: #000000;”><span style=”line-height: 1.2;”><a href=”http://www.direktfastnews.com/index.html”>Direkt Fast News </a>- all crucial news explained in three sentences</span></p>
<p style=”color: #000000;”><span style=”line-height: 1.2;”><a href=”http://delveweekly.com/”>Delve -</a> receive movie of the week, nicely presented</span></p>
<p style=”color: #000000;”><span style=”line-height: 1.2;”><a href=”http://www.lsm.lv”>lsm.lv </a>- nice source for Latvian speaking audience</span></p>
<p style=”color: #000000;”><span style=”line-height: 1.2;”><a href=”https://www.facebook.com/delveLV”>Delve -</a> my own information dissamination platform. Exactly my work on sourcing high quality news for it, has resulted in me knowing so many great sources that can be useful for life. [Yes, it is in Latvian, however, almost all the articles are in English] </span></p>
<p style=”color: #000000;”>Stil. Don’t trust media, and <a href=”https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Sm5xF-UYgdg”>don’t be ignorant about the world.</a> [MARVELOUS VIDEO]</p>
<p style=”color: #000000;”><span style=”font-size: medium;”>P.s. If you are an information geek the same as I am, then bookmark this article and enjoy without hurry. And share.
P.s.s. I consciously tried to escape from more obvious sources like The Economist, Financial Times, The Atlantic etc. I still believe in them being high quality news sources.  </span></p>

Evergreen – gives really indepth information regarding the business related topics. I wanted to put it in TOP 5, but forgot.

Quartz – more finance related Europe centred, high quality news source

Barking up the Wrong tree – self-development advices backed up in science from a guy, who writes to the Economist

Buffer – everything about social media strategy you need to know

Direkt Fast News – all crucial news explained in three sentences

Delve – receive movie of the week, nicely presented

lsm.lv – nice source for Latvian speaking audience

Delve – my own information dissamination platform. Exactly my work on sourcing high quality news for it, has resulted in me knowing so many great sources that can be useful for life. [Yes, it is in Latvian, however, almost all the articles are in English] 

Stil. Don’t trust media, and don’t be ignorant about the world. [MARVELOUS VIDEO]

P.s. If you are an information geek the same as I am, then bookmark this article and enjoy without hurry. And share. P.s.s. I consciously tried to escape from more obvious sources like The Economist, Financial Times, The Atlantic etc. I still believe in them being high quality news sources.  

Advertisements

Technology of the Week “B2C e-commerce”: The future of shopping

deprives-you-of-tangibility

Since the rise of the internet in our everyday life, a lot has changed. Firms had to revolutionise their product strategies, adapt to a whole new 4Ps conception, and serve a whole new platform of markets, namely e-markets. The trend of e-shopping was then introduced in order for firms to increase sales via the e-commerce channel. This lead to further innovations in order to contrast the vicious competitive environment of e-markets, while trying to transfer the in-store shopping experience directly online. With that being said, this article will introduce two new emerging technologies that are involved in the realistic transition between in-store and online shopping through Augmented Reality (AR).

Social Shopping

Social shopping is an e-commerce methodology bridging social media and online shopping together. Social media impacts the shopping behaviour in a way in which other people like friends, family, bloggers and celebrities recommend and suggest certain products and services to the consumers. The idea behind a social shopping website is that it provides the potential customer with blogs and virtual communities to help him in his decision in buying consumer goods and services. This is achieved by the average consumer share his shopping ideas, exchanging opinions on products, and recommending one another on what to buy and what not to buy.

A research on social shopping in 2010 found out that consumers’ trust in product recommendations had not only a direct and significant positive effect on their purchase intentions, but also a strong indirect positive effect on buying the product from that specific website where the information was originally found. The intention of a consumer to purchase a good directly from the website could in that case directly be affected by the trust in the website, thus creating an incentive to build a online shopping platform (Yu, 2010).

To better understand this, we used Shopcade as an example to analyse the technology further, and base conclusions.

shopcade

Shopcade is a website and mobile app that creates a community of fashionistas and allows anyone to easily purchase the items that they see posted. The site has two main sections: the trending section and the feed section.

The trending feed is curated by the app itself. This means that it is a section with content posted only by the Shopcade team. This content comes usually in the form of blog posts regarding different fashion trends, whether it is for clothing, accessories or other items (for example, one post gave the most recent trends in duvet covers). Being a content provider as well as a service provider definitely adds value for the customers of the company. On the other hand, the feed section contains content created exclusively by bloggers and members of the community. This adds even more to the social aspect of Shopcade, giving a very Instagram-like feel to the whole social experience. This is what Shopcade does successfully. It actually created a situation where online shopping offers an experience that would be awkward to achieve in the store.

Below, the SWOT analysis of Social Shopping can be observed. It is directly applicable to the case of Shopcade.

Schermata 2015-09-24 alle 18.43.52

When it comes to their revenue model, Shopcade offers nothing new. As can be expected from such a business, they make money from affiliate marketing and sales. This means that they receive commission for all the purchases made from their website. In addition, some brands want more exposure, which requires them to pay more money to Shopcade.

Virtual Fitting Room (VRF)

Fitsme-has-built-a-virtual-fitting-room-platform-that-can-be-easily-integrated-onto-the-sites-of-online-retailers.

VRFs are the online substitution of in-store fitting rooms. It is available on PC-laptop and mobile devices. VFRs rely heavily on Augmented Reality (AR), which employs specialized software and hardware to merge the digital and the physical worlds by immersing digital information into real video to generate persuasive looking scenes in real-time. Personal measurements can be included online to allow the framework to build a 3-D avatar of the customer fitting the item. It’s built on a three-step algorithm: it builds/scan the user body through data measurements (size, width, length…), reference points (i.e face and figure) via AR, and finally, it builds the avatar incorporating the clothes on a superimposed 3D image.

Software companies such as Virtusize, Fits.me and Clothes Horse have all adapted this new technology providing it to big retail companies, attempting to tackle the fit challenge with a range of technology-based solutions, from “morphing mannequins” to size recommendation engines, all with the goal to simulate the physical fit and sizing experience (G. Randall, 2015).

Often enough shoppers complain about long waiting lines in shops and poorly set up fitting rooms. Conditions such as terrible lighting and a lack of space in the room tend to dominate the endless list of complaints. The slow but steady introduction of VFR has revolutionised the shopping industry, specifically the e-commerce aspect of it.

Using VRFs could actually increase the pleasure of shopping in many ways. Firstly, there is no hassle of having to physically put on several different clothes. The ability to take pictures whilst “trying on” these clothes means that customers can easily compare outfits. Furthermore, many side-menus can be added into the technology, this would be up to a firm to research what sort of features its customers need when trying on clothes. Some great features that many shoppers and experts posted include the ability to like and dislike garments, save pictures of outfits for later, see reviews and prices of products, as well as the ability to call in real-time service (LinkedIn, 2015).

Below, the SWOT analysis of Social Shopping can be observed, applicable to every aspect of the VRFs. As it can be observed, it is filled with opportunities leaving thoughts and space for improvement.

Schermata 2015-09-24 alle 18.53.09

Future perspectives

With the VFR component only, the customers missed the social element of shopping. On the other side, the current social shopping services do not offer a developed VFR experience yet, making a visit to the store easily a necessity. We believe these technologies will merge together as the result will provide an improved customer experience. In the future those various digital resources – VFR and Social Shopping included- will be combined in an overall bigger market. Indeed, as someone will be shopping from his home -trying out clothes through the VFR system-, the person will be able to ask the opinion of a friend or a shopping assistant; involving social shopping (IBM, 2010).

The combination of those two technologies presses the question whether physical retail shops will exist in the future. It seems not to be a question of “If” but “When” physical stores will become obsolete. The reader should ask himself in how much time this change would have taken place: 5, 10, 20 years? It is difficult to say. Humans tend to think linearly, however the rate at which technology imposes itself on the world rather corresponds to an exponential curve as Ray Kurzweil and the institution of Singularity University (2012) are professing.

Sources:

Yu, K.-L. H.-C.-Y.-P. (2010). Antecedents and consequences of trust in online product recommendations”, Online Information Review.
Randall, G. (2015). Fashion ecommerce: are virtual fitting rooms the silver bullet?. [online] Econsultancy. Available at: https://econsultancy.com/blog/66058-fashion-ecommerce- are-virtual-fitting-rooms-the-silver-bullet/ [Accessed 18 Sep. 2015].
LinkedIn (2015). Virtual changing rooms will revolutionize fashion retail [online] Available at: https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/virtual-changing-rooms- revolutionize-fashion-retail-moles-mba

Team 13:
Claudio Corti
Maximilian Wiedmaier
Alex Furnica
Maxim Gggurevic
Paul Grandjouan

Have you ever heard of WordPress?

You have signed up for this blog page and started blogging. But what do you really know about WordPress, the blog site you use? Do you know the difference between WordPress.com and WordPress.org? And did you know you could make galleries of your images? In this blog I’ll give you some tips for using this blog website.

WordPress.com versus WordPress.org

With WordPress it’s easy for anyone to publish online. It’s a publishing platform and millions of websites are made with it. There are two types: the fully hosted (WordPress.com) and the self-hosted version (WordPress.org). Click here for an overview of the differences.

Different roles

There are five different roles:

  1. Follower (public sites)/Viewer (private sites)
    If you are a follower or viewer, than you can read and comment on pages and posts
  2. Contributor
    As a contributor, you are not able to publish or upload, but you can write and edit your own posts until they are published
  3. Author
    As an author you can write, edit and upload photos to your own posts, which you can publish.
  4. Editor
    As an editor you have access to all pages, posts, comments, categories, tags, and links.
  5. Administrator
    You have full power over the site.

How can you make your standard post ‘better’?

Read More…

Referrals? Why should we use them?

Referrals are already very powerful to use; according to some; but why are they useful for a company? Nowadays people can refer a product or service to other people by social media. Most of the times you buy a product and you can refer it to friends, family, colleagues and others. In this way companies try to use word-of-mouth in the online environment. Word-of-mouth is a very powerful tool, because people are more likely to buy products when they hear from friends or experts that it is a good product. So it is likely that referrals are powerful for companies.

social_media_referrals

The article A. Green (2013) suggests that companies should use referrals, because they are a powerful tool to convince people to buy the product. But companies do not know how they should use it. Most companies stimulate referrals at every social media platform where the companies should look which platform has the most interaction and referrals. For some companies it might be useful to use Google+ where visual companies could make better use of Pinterest and Instagram. The article states that 60% of the social media traffic comes from referrals and that the conversion is the highest among people that were referred to the website.

Traffic-by-Source

The table at the right shows he different kind of visits to a website by different kind of contact points. Most people got to the website by an organic search engine like Google or go to the website directly. After this the highest way people got to the website were referrals. But even though organic search got more visitors to the website, referrals has an conversion rate of almost 4 times higher than organic search. This means that people that go the website by a referral are more valuable customers for the company than customers that go to the website in any other way. Referrals are part of the social media platforms, but this research separated them. The table shows that more people go to the site by referral than social media. This implicates that it is more useful to make interesting posts than to redirect customers to a new product on you website by making a Facebook post.

Referrals also benefit the brand awareness of the company. Referrals increase the exposure of a post, because people send it to people they know who will get a positive view of the company. Because when your friend likes it, it must be a good company right? In this way companies should not focus their social media strategy on promotions or other type of commercial activities. Companies should focus their social media strategy on producing interesting posts that make people enthusiastic, exited and people need to find it interesting to share the post to other people they know. In this way referrals themselves can be more powerful than social media posts.

Sources:

http://socialmediatoday.com/agreen1019/1794401/do-social-media-referrals-have-future-your-business

http://www.business2community.com/social-media/the-future-of-social-media-50-experts-share-their-2013-predictions-0326316

http://socialmediatoday.com/sashattuck/1394651/want-increase-conversions-focus-referral-traffic

How Silicon Valley should save the world

As a huge fan of academic magazine ‘Foreign Policy’ I came across the recently published article ‘Can Silicon Valley Save the World?’ [1] written by Charles Kenny & Justin Sandefur. In this particular article the current boom of start-ups in Silicon Valley is addressed whereby these particular start-ups attempt ‘to save the world’. New (information) technologies combined with huge amounts of venture capital are used to generate products and services which aim for improvement of the average living standard in the Third World. Although the idea of gaining efficiency and productivity, and thereby fighting poverty, is one which I personally strongly support, the outcome of previous projects seem to have epically failed. 

Technology, and especially IT, has contributed to breaking out bit-by-bit ‘forgotten’, isolated areas of this world by enabling them to participate in economic and social globalization. However, these areas have not (yet) benefited substantially of this participation. Improvements have been made, but as the article points out: “[M]ore than half the planet still lives on less than $4 a day, and 2.4 billion people live on less than $2 a day. And that’s after a decade that saw the biggest drop in extreme poverty ever.” Pursuing the idea of technology being able to save the world, Silicon Valley – rewarded and supported by the global community – finally considered itself to become an agent of change, and therefore came up with fancy technology-improving and information-sharing projects that in the Western opinion should be the holy grail to creating economic wealth and social welfare for the Third World.   

What Charles Kenny & Justin Sandefur correctly address is that those fancy projects are committed to the way that Western societies would solve the problems that the Third World is facing.  In countries where education, institutions, infrastructure, health care and basic nutrition are lacking, westernized knowledge and solutions do not cope well with adapting to this corrupt and poor (in every sense of the word) environment.  This is demonstrated by the failure of multiple projects mentioned in the article.

In my opinion, Silicon Valley – or not anyone for that matter – should give up on attempts to increase living standards in countries where poverty rules. However, the strategy for tackling poverty should drastically change. Instead of analysing defaults and inefficiencies from an American point-of-view (as is the case here), those should be approached with an African, Asian, Latin American or Middle East perspective.

IT should provide access to the global knowledge-based economy to those areas in need. Additional resources and educational tools should be provided on how to access the global knowledge network, subsequently providing the opportunity for developing countries to collect and process fundamental information on which they can base their own practical insights regarding problem-solving: from their own local and/or national perspective. Silicon Valley needs to provide seed to enable the Third World to grow their own plant, instead of providing a plant that does not acclimatize to its environment. 

[1] http://www.foreignpolicy.com/articles/2013/06/24/can_silicon_valley_save_the_world?wp_login_redirect=0

Wikipedia and Membership Turnover

Wikipedia and Membership Turnover

Inspired by last week’s readings I did some background research on how content on online platforms such as Wikipedia is created/retained and came across the following article which I want to share with you. You can find it under: 

http://www.samransbotham.com/sites/default/files/RansbothamKane_WikiDemotion_2012_MISQ.pdf 

In my opinion it gives interesting insights into the way content on pages that heavily rely on user participation is created and how to retain this knowledge best. Especially that the creation and retention of all knowledge is based on establishing specific types of member groups and structures seems interesting, as it shows that in order for such a system to work you need very different types of participants with very diverse ‘jobs’.

Also, that retention and creation of content requires indeed differently structured communities seems interesting, and how to deal with this fact best when setting-up such communities seems like a challenge with high significance to me as content quality is crucial and highly related to this.