Thursday, October 09, 2008

Late: GEL 2008 Notes


My GEL 2008 photos

Theme: How to create good experiences by making connections that are new, unexpected


Clay Shirky

Clay Shirky

Internet enables connection of consumer experience and collective action
- speed, low cost, international

angry and organized

Social organizing layer

Newspapers "from information source to site of coordination"

"Thinking is for doing" - William James

HSBC and student accounts UK
- When HSBC changed account policy to students' disadvantage, disgruntled students took protest to Facebook
- student posted online easy way to change accounts

Southwest, JetBlue stranded jet incidents
- led to passenger bill of rights

Creating value by having customers talk to one another

! "If you have a problem for a long time, maybe it's not a problem, but a fact." - Shimon Peres

Bobby Martin, Visual Design MFA


! design and community

- described his work with Abyssinian Baptist Church in Harlem NYC
- designed new identity and marketing campaign for ABC
- Abyssinian Baptist Church was one of the forces of the Harlem Renaissance

"Design is power"

Got a grant for marketing campaign from SAPPI Ideas That Matter
- Powerful positive images, slogans to replace liquor advertising on billboards

Phoebe Damrosch

Phoebe Damrosch

Author, former waitstaff at Per Se

customer and server

Shame around service
- class dynamic
- ritual of royalty

Worked at Per Se (Thomas Keller)
- learned about food, wine, service
- how to connect with guests
- when to break rules, e.g., don't put silverware between couple holding hands

Subjective ideas of good service
- had to be "shape-shifter" to match customer personalities and expectations of waitstaff interaction (more involved vs invisible)

Subtheme: TWIST

Bridget Duffy


- Chief Experience Officer, Cleveland Clinic
- original: Chief Empathy Officer

- Humanize the way we deliver medical technology

- Added the voice of patient through the Patient Council

A heart surgery patient (a major Lexus dealer) said what you need is "GPS"
- What he meant was human navigator/guide through care process
- He had nobody he could ask about whether his driver's licence (his ability to drive) would be taken away

Emotion, environment
- 20% technology; 80% spirit, environment, sacred healing process
- "They put their soul in my hand."

George Vaillant

George Vaillant

- Harvard professor, neuroscientist
- wrote a book on how evolution points to a God, to counter Dawkins' book on how science disproves God

- "Positive emotions are terribly important."

- genetic, cultural, developmental

Slow to get started, wasn't able to cover much ground before his time ran out



Kelly Dobson

Kelly Dobson


- machines and humans

New ways to interact with machines
- when we make a thing, we imbue it with parts of ourselves (consciously or not)

!- empathy with machines
- control blender by imitating the sounds made by a blender
- the more active your growl, the more the blender blends

- visceral communication
- breathing object
- neurotic (random behaviors)
- purring animals in next generation

Natascha Schüll

Experiential Landscape of a gambling addict

- Anthropologist, MIT
- social forms of gambling lead to asocial behaviors?
- studying gaming experience

It's all about the slot machine
- showed different casino layouts for tourist (disoriented) vs local/"mature" gamblers (orderly)

Eli Lilly study
- she did work with the co. during a drug trial for a drug to counteract gambling addiction

The Zone
!- psychology: it's not about winning but staying in the flow of the activity
!- Winning interrupts the zone
- Lose track of time, space, money, self/body, senses, people
- trance-like state
!- credit play replacing coins to keep gambler in the flow
!- Adaptive game machines

ct note: "Don't make me think" becomes "Don't make me stop."

Industry metrics
- "Continuous gaming productivity"
- "Time on device"
- Goal: "Player extinction" = get all of customer's money before they leave

!Very customer-focused
- Industry really taps into what users want
- what they see, hear, feel
- closed-circuit = no exits

Engineering vacuum vs player experience

!How to flip pain point into good experience
- Harrahs has Luck Ambassadors who troll the floors looking for players who are losing and likely to quit, then present them with a free dinner coupon

Engineering experience

Natascha asked
- Given the negative financial and social consequences, might the industry move from a profit-maximization (player extinction, short-term) to profit optimization (long-term)?

Subtheme: MAKE

Alex Lee

Alex Lee

- President, OXO

Universal design
- inclusive design
!- helping people without letting them know they're being helped

! "OXO spirit" (for evaluating products)
- easy to use, understand
- honest (design) language
- thought-provoking
- satisfying customer over time

! Identifying the problem is 70% of the solution

Watch, observe
- identify latent need
- usually, users can't articulate need
! - watch for clear inefficiency that nobody articulates

- keen observations of problems + confidence you can solve

Terry Border


- Bent art, photos of bent objects, visual jokes
- connecting interesting ideas

Sam Brown

Sam Brown


Mary Cleaver
- Cleaver Co. (caterer for Gel)
- support sustainable agri and cuisine

Bill Gurstelle
- contributing Editor, Make magazine
- Make TV
- book: Edgeworking

! "What we make for others is profitable. What we make for ourselves is sublime."

Rhett & Link

Rhett & Link

"We make Internet videos"

Nayla Al-Khaja

Nayla Al-Khaja

- 1st female producer and director in UAE
- Dubai is tax-free

Doug Quinn
- records nature sounds, especially those that are disappearing

Marissa Mayer

Marissa Mayer

- VP Products, Google

- recap of what she's done at Goog

What she's excited about now
- geo search
- health, cloud computing
- universal search

Erin McKean
- not w/ OED anymore

Garrett Oliver

Garrett Oliver

- brewmaster, Brooklyn Brewery
- one of founders of Slow Food movement in US
- makes "real ale"

Food facsimiles

Microbrewery is not a new fad
- "it's a return to normality"

Mentally, being producer is like being a brewmaster
- need technical knowledge and passion

! His passion is "showing people something brand new to like"

Bob Mankoff

Humor and degrees of playful incongruity

- Cartoon Editor, New Yorker


Joke elements
- social response
- incongruity

! Bisociation
- associating two things that don't normally match

! Playframe
- safety frame in which we have excitement
- example: tiger in cage (safe, exciting); tiger out of cage (not funny)

Chip Conley

Chip Conley

- CEO, Joie de Vivre Hospitality


Career path
- Real estate development (adversarial) vs Hotel (conciliatory)

! Niche hotels are like magazines
- close relationship with core subscribers
- hotel as mirror of customer
! - offer "identity refreshment"
! - aspirational

- focused on best practices of human behavior

Official GEL recap and photos