Monday, June 21, 2010

Sharing creativity

Have you ever wondered who does those pieces of art on walls, trains, buses, toilets, seats, roofs, books, footpaths, windows, sheds, garages, stairs, bridges, caves, public property and other places?

It is the creativity in us.

A book called Orbiting the Giant Hairball explains that If you were to ask a kindergarten class how many of them were artists, they would all raise their hands. If you were to ask the same question to sixth graders, maybe one third would respond. If you were to ask the same question to a high school grade, only a few would admit to it. This was the motto behind 'somebody,' who started the 1000 Journals Project, an ongoing collaborative experiment attempting to follow 1000 journals throughout its travels. The journals are filled out and passed on from one person to another, most often random people. The goal is to provide a method for interaction and shared creativity among friends and strangers around the world. This idea was born when 'somebody' realised that as people grew older, they began to worry about criticism, shared less and under used their creativity.

In a span of 10 years, this simple yet powerful underground project has transformed into an phenomenal success, as the journals continue to travel. A documentary titled, The 1000 Journals by Andrea Kreuzhage features some fascinating stories of its travel.

If you get the book by chance, fill it up and pass it on. Even if you don't, do not hesitate to let out the creativity in you. Be it a scribble, a poem, a thought, a note or an opinion - share it and make it known.

Monday, June 7, 2010

Everyone’s a gamer

The gaming industry is the world’s largest entertainment industry. Worth over $50billion a year, it is bigger than both film and music industries. While gamers, generally referred to as hardcore gamers play between 4 and 6 hours a day, casual gamers play close to 2 hours a day. Casual gamers are occasional gamers who comprise of those who play less of pc/console games, but more of other forms of games such as mobile phone games. Marketers have always targeted the niche hardcore gamers while forgetting the mass casual gamers. One brand has defied this trend and is reaping profits now – Apple.

Apple's iPhone has impacted consumers’ perception on gaming and games brands drastically. It has been a direct cause in the rise of casual gamers. Casual gamers are the reason why 70% of all iPhone applications are games applications today. The next time you commute, have a peep around and you’ll be amazed to see many of them engrossed in mobile phone games.

Apart from entertainment, games make people smarter too – smarter than non gamers. Our brains’ cognitive function improves simply by virtue of our playing. An East Carolina University Study has confirmed that electroencephalography brain waves of gamers consistently improve their brain functions in comparison to those who don’t play games at all. Games also make people think faster and more accurate in decision making. This however, is not just restricted to thinking games such as chess, Sudoku or crossword puzzles.

The smart phone revolution has redefined the gaming landscape. Gaming is becoming mainstream and moving away from consoles to mobile products. The Apple iPhone has effectively become a games device. No wonder, it has beaten giant gaming brands such as Sony Playstation, Nintendo DS and Microsoft Xbox as the world's No.1 games brand today, based on a study by Y&R’s 'Brand Asset Valuator.'