Updated: 11/27/09; 9:32:48 PM.
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Sunday, September 30, 2007

Archetypal Web
Bono Expects 'Spider-Man' Musical To Set New Standards.

BonoU2's Bono is confident the Spider-Man musical he is currently working on will dazzle audiences, because it will be "something the likes of which no-one has seen or heard".

=> Read more!

[Starpulse News Blog - Music News]
7:19:00 PM    

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Google's Secret Sauce.
While there are many start-ups called by the media "Google killers", becoming more popular than Google is increasingly difficult. Even if Google started with an algorithm for search, it built an infrastructure that prepared its later expansion and became more important than the initial innovation. From New York Times:
Consider the question of Google's greatest business secret. Is it the algorithms behind its search tools? Or is it the way it organizes vast clusters of computers around the globe to answer queries so quickly? Perhaps predictably, Google won't disclose the number of computers deployed in its vast information network (though outsiders speculate that the network has at least 450,000 computers).

I believe that the physical network is Google's "secret sauce," its premier competitive advantage. While a brilliant lone wolf can conceive of a dazzling algorithm, only a superwealthy and well-managed organization can run what is arguably the most valuable computer network on the planet. Without the computer network, Google is nothing.

Eric E. Schmidt, Google's chief executive, appears to agree. Last year he declared, "We believe we get tremendous competitive advantage by essentially building our own infrastructures."

Process innovations like Google's computer network are often invisible to the public, and impossible to duplicate by rivals. Yet successful companies realize that maintaining competitive advantage depends heavily on sustaining process innovations. Great process innovators often support basic research in relevant fields, maintain complete control over the creation of every aspect of a product and refuse to rely on outside suppliers for important components.

Google built a file system "for large distributed data-intensive applications", a programming model and a distributed storage system called BigTable that works on top of Google's file system. Hadoop, an open source project supported by Yahoo, wants to replicate Google's distributed systems.

{ Image from Eric Schmidt's presentation at the Stanford Graduate School of Business in April 2004. }
[Google Operating System]
7:15:34 PM    

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aesthetics plus economics
Predictions for Fall 2007: Part II.

Ever the economist, I like to think of trends as fitting into a sort of framework. Therefore, I've decided to break down the Fall 2007 runway trends not randomly but by category. First we'll look at materials. Coming soon: colors, silhouettes, details and embellishments, themes and influences.


Shag at Max Mara, Fendi. Also seen at Prada, Malo, Stella, and 6267 among aothers. While at times this trend has indeed resulted in somewhat bizarre looks--Style.com's Laird Bordelli described one Malo coat as having "hirsute beaver sleaves"--shag is suprisingly wearable paired with sleek separates such as skinny pants or pencil skirts.


Black leather at Christopher Kane, Burberry Prorsum, J. Mendel.


Synthetic-looking sheen at Burberry Prorsum, Y & Kei,
Cavalli, Jil Sander. At the tents in Bryant Park, I heard a lot of buzz about lurex. I am not sure if the above looks incorporate lurex (I am an economist, not a fashion student after all!) but one thing is for sure: shine in all forms will continue to be a major trend through the winter of '07-'08.


Satin at Sofia Kokosalaki, Bottega Veneta.


Feathers at Andrew Gn, Balmain, Marchesa.


Patent leather at Marni, Burberry Prorsum, Missoni, Max Mara. If the idea of wearing lots of this somewhat wild material does not suit your tastes or your lifestyle, try it in smaller doses--opera length gloves, ankle boots, a wide belt, or a bag are all good bets.


Chunky Knits at Calvin Klein, Proenza Schouler.


Black and white tweed at Behnaz Sarafpour, Thakoon, Zac Posen.


Velvet at D&G, Sofia Kokosalaki, Balenciaga, Marchesa.


Fur at Fendi, Christian Dior. Designers are making liberal use of fur this season--not only in coats but as trim on dresses and sleeves as well. Perhaps this could be the reason PETA has upped the ante in their annual fashion week demonstrations? (If you haven't heard, the organization has had members jumping naked onto Paris runways in the middle of shows this week. View From the Fourth Row has a hilarious first-hand account on her blog for anyone interested.)


Fringe at Bottega Veneta, Marchesa, and Balmain. Now is that Marchesa dress beautiful, or is it beautiful?

Also noted but not pictured here: Sequins and paillettes, treated mohair, astrakhan, a bit of moire here and there, thick square weave (I cannot for the life of me find the correct term for this, so if any fashion students, editors, designers or reporters are reading this, your help would be appreciated), down, and a few interesting fabrics which can only be described as having a "crinkled" or "bubbling" texture.

Well, did I miss anything? ;)

What do you look forward to wearing?

[Aesthetics + Economics]
8:39:41 AM    

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© Copyright 2009 Gary Santoro.


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