"A consortium of 10 top-tier universities will soon offer fully online, credit-bearing undergraduate courses through a partnership with 2U, a company that facilitates online learning.
Any students enrolled at an 'undergraduate experience anywhere in the world' will be eligible to take the courses, according to Chip Paucek, the CEO of 2U, which until recently was called 2tor. The first courses are slated to make their debut in the fall.
After a year in which the top universities in the world have clambered to offer massive open online courses (MOOCs) for no credit, this new project marks yet another turning point in online education. It is the first known example of top universities offering fully online, credit-bearing courses to undergraduates who are not actually enrolled at the institutions that are offering them."
(Steve Kolowich, 15 November 2012, Inside Higher Ed)
"When we released our report on the colors of the social web, based on data analyzed by our Twitter theme tool, we were surprised that blue was such a dominant color in people's profile designs. Was Twitter's default color influencing their design decisions? Or is blue really THE most popular and dominant color online? ...We decided to look at the colors in the brands from the top 100 sites in the world to see if we could paint a more colorful picture.
Turns out the blue-berry doesn't fall far from the bush. The web landscape is dominated by a large number of blue brands... but Red occupies a large amount of space as well. What's driving this? You might want to say that carefully organized branding research and market tests were done to choose the perfect colors to make you spend your money, but a lot of the brands that have grown to be global web powerhouses, started as small web startups... and while large corporate giants with branding departments spend quite a lot on market research, user testing, branding, etc. Lots of the sites listed above got started with brands created by the founders themselves with little to no research into the impact their color choice would have. I once asked Mark Zuckerberg, the founder of Facebook why he chose blue for his site design... "I'm color blind, it's the only color I can see." ...and now 500 Million people around the world stare at a mostly blue website for hours each week.
While the initial reasoning for the colors chosen may be trivial, the impact that these dominant players now have in the web world will surely influence the smaller startups that want to share in the positive color associations created by their bigger siblings... Once a rocketship of a web startup takes flight, there are a number of Jr. internet astronauts hoping to emulate their success... and are inspired by their brands. And so Blue and Red will probably continue to dominate, but we can have hope for the GoWalla's, DailyBooth's and other more adventurous brands out there."
(COLOURlovers, 15 September 2010)
"xtranormal's mission is to bring movie-making to the people. Everyone watches movies and we believe everyone can make movies. Movie-making, short and long, online and on-screen, private and public, will be the most important communications process of the 21st century.
Our revolutionary approach to movie-making builds on an almost universally held skill-typing. You type something; we turn it into a movie. On the web and on the desktop."
[The Xtranormal Text-to-Movie authoring tool allows you to produce short films. It does so through adding your typed dialogue (in the form of 'text to speech') to supplied animated character assets.]
"For those companies willing to make the cultural commitment to the instantaneous praise and bashing served up 140 characters at a time on Twitter, the rewards can be considerable.
Jeffrey Hayzlett, Kodak's chief marketing officer, said that he learned firsthand after the company originally debuted its Zi8 waterproof, pocket-sized HD video camera earlier this year. ...
Most companies would either ignore the panning or, perhaps, send the product back to the sales and marketing gurus to come up with a better name.
Kodak didn't. Instead, this summer it took the naming process to the people via Twitter, asking the great unwashed masses on the microblogging site to see if they could come up with something better. The winner, or winners as it turns out, were promised a free trip to Vegas for this year's CES and will have their likeness displayed in some way on the product's packaging.
From the thousands of tweets received from the crowdsourcing experiment, Kodak combined two fairly mundane suggestions -- 'Play' and 'Sport' -- to derive the new moniker 'PlaySport.' It's not rocket science but, according to Hayzlett, it's a damn sight better than Zi8."
(Larry Barrett, 7 January 2010)
"We are a changing, emerging state that no longer seeks inspiration from the present flag. It is part of our history and the role that it has played can be respected. We are moving from a predominantly bicultural society to one that now involves an important component of Pacific island people and also immigrants from Asia.
We must now seek inspiration, visual excitement and stimulus to creativity and excellence from many directions and develop a flag that can be a source of pride to New Zealanders as we continue to impact strongly on the wider world in the many areas of commerce, sport, films, literature, tourism and creative thinking in which we have to strive to excel."
(Ian Prior, 27 February 2004)
Fig.1 New Zealand National flag and state ensign;
Fig.2 Michael Smythe, 'Koru (after Gordon Walters)';
Fig.3 Cameron Sanders;
Fig.4 'Tino Rangatiratanga';
Fig.5 Kyle Lockwood.