How Amazon is Taking Over the World and Why You Might Want to Help

Amazon is taking over the world, or so it sometimes seems. They convinced the US Postal service to bring back Sunday deliveries. Sometimes people casually refer to having “tons of stuff,” while Amazon sells tons of stuff every day. Their building boom in the Seattle area includes everything from conventional offices and warehouses to biosphere domes. Increasingly, Amazon is entering the shipping business as well.

Amazon Prime Air

Prototype of an Amazon Prime Air package delivery drone
Prototype of a Prime Air delivery drone. Photo courtesy

The Prime Air brand initially launched with their delivery drone project. Evolving US regulations relative to UAVs (unmanned aerial vehicles) have contributed to development challenges.

The brand made it to the real world sooner than anyone expected. Their first cargo aircraft, dubbed Amazon One, is prominently labeled Prime Air. It was revealed to the public with a flyover at Seattle’s annual Seafair festival. The prime number in the aircraft’s tail number is a subtle nod to the observant.

Continue reading How Amazon is Taking Over the World and Why You Might Want to Help

The Final Countdown for Free Windows 10 Upgrades

Microsoft’s Windows 10 has been hanging over my head like the Sword of Damocles. On the one hand, a free upgrade is a good thing. Microsoft has been marketing that for months. On the other hand, I had issues while upgrading another PC.

The Edge browser built into Windows 10 has received a lot of criticism for having less functionality than the browsers most people are used to. Browsers like FireFox, Safari, Chrome, and Microsoft’s own Internet Explorer have set the bar. I knew from prior experience that while Internet Explorer still exists on a Windows 10 machine, it’s pretty well hidden. Continue reading The Final Countdown for Free Windows 10 Upgrades

Emerald City Comicon Cosplay Photos

Cosplay is a conspicuous part of Comicon (also known as Comic Con, ComicCon or Comic-Con depending on the locale) and other comic-oriented shows. Last year after Emerald City Comicon I didn’t have room to include nearly all of the cosplayer photos I took. Some of these photos have been burning a hole in my hard drive, so here’s to catching-up!

Lara Croft

Lara Croft, Tomb Raider, at Emerald City Comicon held at the Washington State Convention Center in Seattle.
Lara Croft, Tomb Raider, at Emerald City Comicon

Previously the same day I had mistaken someone’s character as Lara Croft, because of the similar costume and guns.

It turns out that the look with two low-slung guns that was distinctive two decades ago isn’t that unique anymore.

I mentioned the confusion to this player, and she said “Yes, I’m Lara Croft, and check out these guns!” (Clearly she was as proud of her arms as her side-arms.) Continue reading Emerald City Comicon Cosplay Photos

3 Ways Companies Leveraged the News for Marketing

Fifty Shades of Grey was all over the news. Lovers stores took advantage of all the press by putting-up banners asking “What’s Your Shade?”

They were not the first to take advantage of what’s hot, and won’t be the last. However, some have done it better than others.

Keep it Relevant

Pi Day has been gaining visibility in recent years, with observances including math discussions and eating pie. What caught my attention this time was how WDLabs ran with it as a marketing opportunity.

Continue reading 3 Ways Companies Leveraged the News for Marketing

The Other Steve Case

Usually I’m Steve Case the Xerox guy, or the Dell guy, or the JoeBugBuster guy. Sometimes someone confuses me with the other Steve Case, like the person who recently sent me this thoughtfully crafted invitation on LinkedIn:

Hi Steve,

I’m getting in touch as I’m really looking forward to your insights at South by South West (SXSW) in Austin next week and I’d like to connect with you on LinkedIn if that’s ok?

Good luck with all the good work!


The South by Southwest Connection

I’ve never even been to South by Southwest. In fact, when I worked for Dell and visited the Austin area a few times a year, I deliberately avoided visiting during SxSW. Flights and hotel rooms were painfully hard to come by as Downtown Austin hosted the festivities.

Continue reading The Other Steve Case

5 Reasons I Visit an Inconvenient Coffee Shop – and You Should Too

I pass several coffee shops and kiosks on the way to my favorite one. Certainly I could save a little time and mileage by stopping at one of those, but going the extra mile is worth it to me.

What makes Blue Steele Coffee Company worth the longer drive? In fact, how do folks know Blue Steele exists? They don’t do much marketing beyond social media postings on Facebook. Thanks to word-of-mouth advertising, they’re known for several things including their coffee, their service, and their history.

Personal Service

They bring me my food and drink. (They don’t make me listen for my order to be called the way fast food places and some coffee shops do.) That’s a big deal to me, especially if I’m meeting someone.

I remember a job posting, looking for someone that would “exude technical excellence.” Isn’t exude a great word? It’s also great for a coffee shop to exude personal service. Continue reading 5 Reasons I Visit an Inconvenient Coffee Shop – and You Should Too

Always asking "What are you trying to accomplish?"