Interesting tech trends can often be hard to find considering the data overload we deal with every day. Search no further; we’ve got your back! Below are 7 links that the Social Driver team found technologically cool, entertaining, and informative:
The shoe-niverse gained an awesome new addition as Google revealed an interactive shoe at this year’s SXSW. The Google Advertising team placed a small computer in the tongue of a pair of Adidas. Equipped with technology to assess your movements and connect to your phone, the shoes are fully capable of telling you to be more active if necessary. “The Talking Shoe is an experiment in how you can use connected objects to tell stories on the Web today,” said Aman Govil, head of the advertising team.
Recently announced, the new feed redesign for Facebook plans to offer minimized sidebars and a more intimate approach to convey a personalized feel. The design also plans to offer more real estate in individuals news feeds to those who promote post or own sponsored stories on Facebook. Find out more interesting changes in our What the New Facebook News Feed Redesign Means For Nonprofits post!
Could your workplace noise level (or lack there of) be hindering your creativity? Coffitivity, an online ambient noise provider, claims that studies show ambient sounds boost creativity. Using a coffee shop setting, Coffitivity suggest that working in too quiet or too loud of an environment can increase chances of unproductivity. Try it yourself! Visit Coffitivity, plug your earphones in, and let the creativity flow!
Should patients’ text or email their doctors as an added form of communication in healthcare? This question raises a lot of arguments and the article above reaches even more brow raising points. Considering digital progression and the many ways we communicate, the article shares that still less than “90% Americans have never emailed or texted with their doctor.”
Business Insider shared a list of 25 most innovative businesses in DC. From LivingSocial, a daily deals website, to Black Jack, a bar with a bocce ball court, the district is definitely home to some innovative businesses. Other interesting businesses that made their list include Capitol Bikeshare, Clean Currents, and Genius Rockets.
Nerds are not the only personalities on the programming scene. Douglas MacMillan shares the rise of the “more testosterone-fueled breed of coder.” With the onset of the “Brogrammer” meme’s floating around the Internet, the article shares interesting ideas and quotes from new age computer intellectualists who come from diverse backgrounds.
And here is an added bonus! If you often enjoy your friends’ playlists then you’ll enjoy Turntable. The online app allows a group of people to create a playlist for everyone to enjoy at the same time. Each person is deemed a DJ and has a chance at spinning their record and impressing the group. Even better, the app is also downloadable for iPhones.
What did you read about this week?
At Social Driver, we like to think a lot about the future, but sometimes it’s fun to look back at the past and see just how far we’ve come. This infographic shows the state of our union 100 years ago compared to today. What do you think we’ll see in the next 100 years?
There is so much news buzzing around about Princess Kate Middleton and her pregnancy. Her time spent in the hospital must be far from enjoyable and we feel for her… how boring! So, we decided to create a list of the top 15 apps that Kate should download for information, entertainment, and planning for the arrival of her baby.
Now that Kate and Wills are expanding their family, they need to start searching for a new home. This app is the Zillow for Royal families. I can't think of a better app for a Princess! With this app, Kate can search high and low for the most beautiful castles, learning about historic architecture, ancient ruins, and fortress origins, all while potentially picking out a new home!
With this app, Kate and William can both bond with the baby before the big day! Whether they use an iPhone microphone or regular earphones, they can listen to the sound of the fetus' heartbeat, record it, and share it with family and friends. It brings creepiness to a whole new level.
Since the baby won't arrive for quite some time, the only available pictures for William and Kate are the ultrasound photos. In the meantime, why not jazz these up a bit. With Pimp my Ultrasound, they can add from a list of “pimp features” such as a baseball cap, world's cutest baby frame, or even a tiara (which might be the most fitting.)
To make the pregnancy even more exciting, Kate can set up a game for all of her family and friends on Baby Pool. Much like a fantasy football team, participants will compete and earn points by guessing the baby's birth stats correctly. Participants will predict topics such as baby's length, weight, birthday, and even exact time of arrival. Kate can set up a private pool, or we could all play. We basically already are, so why not earn some points in the process!
It's time for the Royal Palace to steer clear of cocktails. We bet this app will be filled with creative ideas and new twists on tasty juices and seltzers. The Royal parties are going to have to get savvy with the beverages over the next nine months, and with this app, there is no way they will run out of ideas!
We know what Kate looks like, we know what Prince William looks like.. Any takers on what the baby will look like? This app can help. All Kate has has to do is enter 21 facial traits from both her and William, then the app will configure the dominant and recessive traits, and automatically assign what traits the baby will receive from each parent. Lastly, a cartoon animated baby is illustrated to share the results with Kate.. and most likely everyone else on the Internet.
Let's face it, pregnancy changes everything. Kate can consult with this app on a daily basis to determine which foods are okay to eat and which foods to run from. Foods are broken up into categories for easy searching, so Kate can even pass her phone along to her personal chefs for easy menu planning!
Ahhhhh, peacefulness. By downloading White Noise Baby pre-baby, Kate can enjoy the soothing sounds of everything from an air conditioner and wind chimes, to the tones of a vacuum cleaner. Post-baby, when Kate needs instant entertainment for her baby, this app will turn into a rattle with fun shapes and sounds that will put the crying at ease.
Could there have been a better time for the new Snapseed release?! While in hide-out from the paparazzi, Prince William and Kate can take millions of photos of their new baby, like all new parents do. This app will let them edit the photos through enhancing colors, adding frames, and selecting filters to reach professional style. Plus, the photos can be shared in a cinch through Google+ capabilities to make sure the entire Royal family is included!
There is nothing like a trashy magazine to make the time fly. When she has time to kill, Kate can pick up an Us Weekly to stay up-to-date on the latest American gossip in Hollywood. The Royal family no longer wants to look at British tabloids anyway, so this magazine app is a perfect replacement for a Royal stress-free read.
Aside from finding out the gender of the baby, here is the next biggest question! What will Kate and William name “it?” This app will allow them to filter through thousands of names by popularity, meaning, origin, and sound. Once they find a few they like, Kate can create a favorites list of all the potentials before it's time for the final decision.
With the help of Eventbrite and sister Pippa, there's no way the Baby Shower could go wrong! Kate has two perfect opportunities to create the most royal of showers. Especially because we don't want any Royal invitations getting lost in the mail, Evenbrite makes it easy to share the shower online with everyone on the guest list. While Pippa does the planning, Kate can use the app to organize the details and see who has registered for attendance.
We all saw that Modern Family episode when Gloria, who is also pregnant, can't seem to keep up with her daily tasks of remembering what has to get done. We don't want Kate to suffer from pregnancy brain! With Remember The Milk, Kate can create to-do lists to connect to her gmail, iCal, and Twitter accounts to ensure she stays on track. When something needs to get done, Kate will get notified through all accounts, so she won't ever miss a thing.
Time for lots and lots of movie watching. Netflix makes the perfect app, especially when the TV remote is just too far out of reach. Since Kate no longer feels quite like herself, movies and TV shows will be a perfect way to spend time with her loved ones. Now that Disney signed an exclusive deal to Netflix, Kate won't have to leave the house to find her old favorites on DVD.
Since the whole world knows exactly which hospital Kate is staying, it must be hard for the Royal family to visit with and check on Kate. The best suggestion we came up with is Skype. With Skype, Kate can catch up with Pippa, Harry, Queen Elizabeth, along with the rest of the family to let them know how she is doing.
In all honestly, we wish Kate the safest and happiest of pregnancies. We can't wait to meet the newest member of the Royal Family!
Update: Our condolences go out to Jacintha Saldanha's family and friends.
Lots and lots of social media buzz about the election is circulating around the Web. In addition to that, new technologies are popping up to get us to the voting polls. Read below to find out what you must have before going to vote!
First of all, Vote For Somebody!
The adorable 4th graders at Democracy Prep are singing to get you to the polls! If you know the tune to “Call Me Maybe” then you’ll love listening to the Harlem Prep Hawks sing their creative mix of civic messages to inspire you to vote. This video has become a hit on YouTube and is going viral real fast. Don’t be the last one to get this song stuck in your head!
On Election Day, November 6th, Zipcar is promoting Zip To The Polls! Zipcar members can pay half price from 5am-9pm for hourly reservations on any vehicle. First, you can register to vote on Zipcar’s Facebook page and find your polling place. Book your reservation and you’ll be zipping to the polls for half the price in no time.
Download PollTracker Mobile
Talking Points Memo released PollTracker Mobile, a free app download for your iPhone in the AppStore. This app includes not only the presidential race, but all races across the entire country. You can choose which races you want to follow and receive immediate notifications when new polling information is released.
Tech President gives us an update on election day apps via Google’s Civic Information API. The API sets up the basis for app developers to have access to early voting and polling locations, as well as candidate and official election information. As of last week, the API is active in fifteen states with many more emerging as we get closer to Election Day.
Around here, we like creative ideas to circulate the office on a daily basis. To keep you in the loop, we will post our favorite links each week. This week’s What We’re Reading offers tips on your favorite social media tools to keep you on your toes with the latest happenings!
Alexandra Samuel from the Harvard Business Review Blog writes how early social media adopters can share their love of new media without overwhelming their co-workers. These are 8 helpful ways for going against the grain in acceptable and welcoming ways. If you see yourself as ahead of the new media game in your office, read this article to help tone down your excitement in ways that others can understand.
8 is the magic number today as Haydn Shaughnessy from Forbes emphasizes the importance of social media measurement. This article has great detail to pair perfectly with the infographic below. Shaughnessy shares specific tools and strategies that are useful when measuring your data. He also advises which measurements take prominence in your business and how you can monitor these more closely.
Awareness Inc. created an easy-to-follow infographic for a quick lesson in social media auditing. Not sure if your social strategy is working? Whether you need a refresher on Facebook or Twitter, this infographic is for you. Learn how to analyze your competitor’s numbers and start comparing to make changes of your own.
Amber Mac from Fast Company teaches us how to use Twitter’s new features to show off your professional personality. Mac writes about 3 key focuses with suggestions for your new profile options. So, go create a header, update your profile picture, and improve your photo stream for even more social media presence.
If you just took the advice from above and edited your Twitter photo, than you may be a part of the 75% of workers who access social media while on the job. Blogger John Hollon at TLNT discusses the amount of workers who use social media throughout the day regardless of their company policies that say not to.
Last week, we shared links that will make you think. This time around, it’s all about doing! According to Adobe’s infographic, two thirds of businesses say social media is integral to their marketing. Brands are using multiple social media sites to engage to their customers, with Facebook and Twitter as the most popular platforms. Check out articles below that describe new functionalities and tips to take advantage of these new tools for your own marketing and social engagement efforts!
Combining CRM technology with Facebook user information, businesses can now target their advertisements to multiple customer segments. For example, Starwood can position their St. Regis hotel advertisements to high-end customers while also promoting their economical hotel brands to budget conscious customers. Announced at last week’s Dreamforce Conference, Facebook’s new advertisement tool called Custom Audience means you’ll soon see advertisements with messages directly tailored to you.
According to Ad Age and Blue Fin Labs, Starbucks, FIFA Soccer, Google, and H&M are a few of the brands with the biggest gains in social mentions on Twitter this past week. What was a key theme across these brands’ top gains? TV Advertisements! Takeaway: integrate multiple media platforms to engage your audience. As this shows, engaging and compelling television ads support customer engagement on social media and vice versa.
With LinkedIn’s new function called Endorsements, your colleagues can now recommend skills and expertise you may not even knew you had! LinkedIn will alert you via email whenever your peers either suggest a new skill or vouch your existing expertise. Your colleagues’ pics making the endorsement will also be featured in the Skills & Expertise section of your page.
Pretty soon you’ll be able to “like” and comment on shared documents through Facebook’s Groups page using Dropbox. Facebook will be rolling out this new feature where Group members can link their Dropbox accounts directly onto their Facebook Groups page, making it easier to alert members of document edits and changes.
The above are just a few new tools we’ve discovered. Here are a handful of other articles that sparked the interest of the Social Driver Team:
Here at Social Driver, we strive to always learn new things and share them with you. To get some inspiration flowing, here are a few of our favorite posts from this past week.
If you’re curious about the effect social media has on your business, head over to to the link above by Sociagility. There you will find the rankings of Global PR agencies making the most of the social media experience for their clients and consumers.
Researchers over at Say Media offer guidance on how to market to the Off The Grid consumers who are straying from live broadcast and traditional easy-to-reach media channels. Read up to find out where these consumers are spending most of their media time.
Ellis Hamburger over at The Verge writes about the app, Paper for iPad and her interview with Paper creator George Petschnigg. Petschnigg shares what he and his team have learned from the requests of their users to improve and launch the upgraded app, Paper 1.1.
Dave Gray over at Fast Company writes about the importance of exploring alternative business opportunities since you never know what the fast-paced future of technology will bring. Gray encourages experiments from every member of the workplace to get creative and bounce clever ideas around, so when a curveball hits, you’ll be prepared.
Fran Berkman over at Mashable shares an engaging, witty infographic for you to consider before posting another photo album to your favorite social networking sights, especially if you’re on the job hunt.
And for your end of the week “get me to the weekend” feeling, we give you Screaming Sheep.
Happy almost Friday everyone!