The Sound of Business – Part I

Breaking The Liquid Crystal Barrier

The Web is an emotionally remote hinterland delivered to us through an
impenetrable liquid crystal barrier. How then, can you as a business
owner, entrepreneur, or marketing executive connect to a target
audience that requires emotional reassurance in order to do business?

Willy Loman is Dead

Gone are the days when we sent out phalanxes of sales representatives
pounding the pavement, beating the bushes, and generally getting in
the face of prospects. Too expensive, way too expensive, have you seen
the price of gas? Enough said.

Hot Shots Are Us

So you hire some hot shot Web designer who isn’t as old as the shoes
you’re wearing. If you spent some money on your site, and you didn’t fall
into the trap of having your brother-in-law’s cousin design the thing, you
probably got a technically proficient website. Unfortunately, when they
teach these ‘wunderkind’ the ways of the Web at the local community
college, they don’t teach them anything about business, especially
anything about marketing.

Now if you’re one of those people who think websites are IT projects
then good luck, have a nice life, stop reading, because the rest of what I
have to say will mean nothing to you. On the other hand, if you believe
websites are about marketing, let’s talk.

A Manifesto for the Web

A bunch of guys a whole lot smarter than me wrote a neat little screed
called the ‘The Cluetrain Manifesto’ – very clever stuff. What they said
was ‘markets are conversations consisting of human beings, and the
Internet enables these conversations.’ Now here’s the critical part,
‘conversations among human beings sound human. They are
conducted in a human voice.’ Now does that sound like the Web you
know? Does your website speak with a human voice? Does your
website connect in a human way to your customers? I think not.

So what does this really mean, this so called conversation? Well we are
all aware of Email, Blogs, RSS, and the Instant Messenger technologies
that have enabled this conversation to take place. But with these
informal conversations comes a danger – sloppy thinking and
misunderstood intent.

Someone sends you an email, and you quickly respond dashing off an
email reply without carefully thinking about how, or what, you are
saying. Even if the basic intent and content is what you wanted to say,
have you really said it in a way that your conversation partner will
understand, or will they misconstrue your meaning?

How many one line, short-form emails have you received in response to
a complex initial correspondence, and if you’re anything like me, you
looked at it and thought to yourself, ‘what the hell is this suppose to
mean.’ We’ve got a conversation going all right, but have we really
attained communication.

The Meaning of Life or At Least Web Conversation

Now here’s the interesting thing. I never actually read ‘The Cluetrain
Manifesto’, but I did hear it. Knowing that I would be laid-up for a few
days, bored to death, with nothing to do, but too comatose to really
concentrate on reading a book, I purchased one of those audiocassette
books at the local mall. I had no idea what I was buying, but it sounded
interesting, after all the cover said ‘the end of business as usual’ which
really appealed to my unconventional, contrary nature.

So I bought it, and it was a revelation, an epiphany. Not that I agreed
with everything Rick Levine, Christopher Locke, Doc Searls, and David
Weinberger had to say, but still their voices stayed with me, and are still
locked away somewhere in my head.

Breaking the Liquid Crystal Barrier

And that my friend is the message, the sound of the human voice is
powerful, and it connects to the listener on a whole different level. It
speaks the truth and connects emotionally to the listener on a very
human plane. It breaks through that liquid crystal barrier, and says,
listen to me, I’m here, I’m human, and I have something real to talk to you
about. Wow, this is good stuff. So tell me why don’t you have that human
connection imbedded in your website, delivering your message, your
story.

Forget about all the crap you’ve heard and read about bandwidth and
search engine optimization. When someone takes the trouble to visit
your website, don’t waste the opportunity. Don’t screw it up. Don’t be
afraid to say what needs to be said, in a way that will be heard. If you do
it right, your website visitors will remember what you have to say, and
that liquid crystal barrier will be broken.

What Is the Best Sonic Toothbrush?

Sonic toothbrushes have become extremely popular over the years. They were first introduced to the market in 1983 by Sonicare. Since they were released, the heads and vibration technologies have advanced dramatically. If you are shopping for a sonic toothbrush, chances are that you want to find the best one on the market. Before you start shopping for a sonic toothbrush, you need to understand that not all electric toothbrushes are classified as sonic toothbrushes. An electric device will vibrate at speeds of 3000 to 8000 strokes per minute. A sonic toothbrush on the other hand will operate at 30,000 to 40,000 vibrations per minute. As you can see, there is a major difference in the efficiency of cleaning. Learn what features to look for when you are shopping for your oral hygiene tool.

What is the Best Product You Can Buy?

There are so many different models on the market that choosing the best model can be extremely difficult. The first thing to look for is a vibrating head. Some heads only move back-and-forth and others will vibrate. Vibration will loosen the food and plaque. Consider the speed at which the toothbrush vibrates and look for adjustable speeds so you can get familiar with the feel when you are first using the model.

You should also look for other features like a timer. A timer can be helpful for people who rush their brushing sessions. When you live a busy life, the idea of brushing for 2 minutes may sound too long. It is imperative to brush for 2 minutes so you thoroughly clean all of your quadrants. With a timer, you will be alerted when you have reached that 2 minute mark.

You should look for a brand that comes with several different head options. You might want a soft-bristled brush or a medium bristle. You might need a smaller head because you have a small mouth. Make sure you can choose what is comfortable for you and look for brush heads that are not too expensive to replace.

Some of the more expensive brands come with advanced features that are designed to make use easier. You might want a rechargeable battery or a docking station. Consider your budget and the features you will really use. If you choose the best model for you, you will see less plaque when you floss and your dentist will give you a clean bill of oral health.

Future Supersonic Aircraft With No Sonic Boom – Noise Cancelling or Noise Suppression?

Well, over the last few months I have returned to the subject of silent flying aircraft. Back in 2000, I hypothesized many different strategies for creating aircraft which make no noise – even jet aircraft which could cancel out a sonic boom, and prevent any of the jet turbine noise from waking people up as they took off over the city. This future reality is coming to fruition very soon, that is to say future supersonic aircraft with no sonic boom. Indeed I’d like to discuss this with you for a moment if you have the time.

Recently, there was an interesting piece on this topic, as Gizmag online had a cool feature recently titled; “Futuristic Biplane Design Eliminates Sonic Boom,” by James Holloway, published on March 19, 2012. The article with artist’s conceptions stated;

“A first boom is caused by the rapid compression of air at the front of the plane, literally pushed together by the aircraft. A second is caused by the negative pressure left in the plane’s wake – or rather, the rapid return to normal pressure that follows soon after. Though the two booms separate phenomena, they occur so close together that they are usually perceived as a single sound. An aircraft in supersonic flight creates a continual boom as it goes.”

If you go to the MIT Media website and search for this press release: “A biplane to break the sound barrier – Cheaper, quieter and fuel-efficient biplanes could put supersonic travel on the horizon,” by Jenifer Chu published on March 15, 2012 you can read all about it.

Well, a dual swept flying winged biplane which was properly aerodynamically configured could indeed accomplish this. It’s not that the sonic boom would go away rather it’s that the sonic boom could not escape, and that sound could not travel to other people in ear shot. Would it costs too much to build an aircraft like this; perhaps not because instead of one large wing, it would have two smaller ones. In fact, it is a decent design for efficiency on the flight ramp due to its short wing span, and if scaled down, it might even make a nice little fighter aircraft. Scaled up of course, it can be used for a corporate business jet or even an airliner. Perhaps even in an air cargo aircraft configuration.

There seems to be many ways to solve this problem of trapping a sonic boom, or using noise canceling strategies. This is merely one, and although this aircraft may never be built, it does include some rather ingenious and creative thinking. Perhaps one should be built, or several as prototypes for no other reason than to see what we can learn. Indeed I hope you will please consider all this and think on it.