One of the more interesting seminars at the Cannes Lions in June earlier this year was that one of Astro Teller who leads the Google X initiative. You know where the idea for Google Glass or Google’s self driving cars is coming from:
“Here is the surprising truth. It’s often easier to make something 10 times better than it is to make it 10 percent better. Because when you’re working to make things 10 percent better, you inevitably focus on the existing tools and assumptions, and on building on top of an existing solution that many people have already spent a lot of time thinking about. Such incremental progress is driven by extra effort, extra money, and extra resources. It’s tempting to feel improving things this way means we’re being good soldiers, with the grit and perseverance to continue where others may have failed — but most of the time we find ourselves stuck in the same old slog. But when you aim for a 10x gain, you lean instead on bravery and creativity — the kind that, literally and metaphorically, can put a man on the moon.”
I like that. It’s almost like a scientific explanation of why you have to dream big.
Image credit Pandiyan V
“One way to think about it. It’s like the relationship between media and social media is like the relationship between egg and eggplant. They share just a couple of letters but they’re not in the same taxonomy. That it’s a fundamentally different experience. And that it used to be when you where storytelling, that what you were competing for attention against where other stories. It’s sort of a story competition. And the attention we are competing for now is the attention to each other.”
I didn’t get the chance to meet Helge in person yet, but I find both him and Kevin very inspiring so check them out.
I’ve just started reading ‘Round Ireland with a fridge‘ a few days ago and (apart from being a good funny book) there was this one part that reminded me so much of advertising that I had to copy it right here. And yes, not all advertising is bad ;)
“The taxi driver helped me with the fridge but had failed to see anything in it worthy of conversation. He has his own agenda and he wanted to chat about traffic congestion in the city, unnecessary roundabouts and the mindless introduction of one-way systems. Taxi drivers are the same throughout the world – great levellers. Never mind that Nelson Mandela, President Clinton or Michelle Pfeiffer has jumped into the cab, they’ll get no specialist treatment, none whatsoever. The driver will bore them just as shitless as you and me”
For those who don’t know the book, it’s basically about Tony Hawks who hitchhiked around Ireland with a fridge after a bet he did with one of his friends.