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June 17, 2015No Comments

#PowerWoman Shaping The Face of Business, Art & Tech

Being an Activist, Artist and Feminist landed me on TheWrap's Power Women Breakfast.  Sitting amongst some of our most influential women in entertainment, media, technology and finance renewed my belief in the our ability to come together to promote the change we wish to see in the world. The discussion spanned many of the trends in the constantly shifting media and technology landscape to giving our daughters permission early and often to use art, media and tech to change our world.

Today technology is acting as the great equalizer. We must teach and empower women to use it for progress.

I believe it can serve us as a powerful platform with global reach for our ideas, talents and inventions. Now it's important for us to #ActWithConviction  as change agents with a message of equality for all.

Read more about it at: http://www.thewrap.com/helen-mirren-calls-hollywood-ageism-f-cking-outrageous-at-wraps-1st-power-women-breakfast-in-nyc/


July 7, 2014No Comments

Future Of Wearable Tech

Sensors, Wearable tech, and personal eco-systems are all the rage, but the craze goes beyond connected eyewear such as Google Glass and smart timepieces such as Apple's rumored iWatch. Wearable technology is an undeniable trend and brands like Nike, Apple, Samsung and Google are all bringing out products to satisfy consumers growing awareness and demand for new products.

Much has been written about smartwatches in particular due to the Samsung Galaxy Gear watch and the new Apple iWatch - What does this mean the future of wearable technology? Is it all about wrist based devices? Can wearable technology cross over from being an fashion accessory to being a functioning part of our everyday lives? What do you think will happen in the future of this industry?

PSFK Labs in collaboration with iQ by intel created this great report which covers how the latest trends are evolving.

Fashion Forward: From The Runway to Ready-to-wear

Designers are creating apparel, accessories and fitness wear that can do everything from monitor your heart rate to charge your smartphone. For the Fashion Forward scene here are some of the latest players in the space:

  • Charge It: Someday you may be able to charge your smartphone with your clothes. Flexible solar panels have inspired designers to come up with clothes and accessories that can power electronics. Start-up Wearable Solar is using the technology to make lightweight wired garments that enable the wearer to charge a smartphone up to 50 percent if worn in the sun for a full hour. And New York-based Voltaic Systems makes a collection of bags that can charge a variety of devices.
  • Baubles and Bangles: In the future, our own personal air purifier may defend us from all that nasty air outside. Worn on the wrist, the Hand Tree design sucks up and filters polluted air, and recycles it back into the atmosphere. It was created by Alexandr Kostin, a semifinalist in the Electrolux Design Lab Competition. The purifier gas a refillable carbon filter, a rechargeable battery and an organic light-emitting diode screen.
  • Rainbow Winters: Some sharp people want to make our clothing to, well,do more.  Amy Winters, the designer of the Rainbow Winters clothing line, makes garments that respond to their environment.  For example, the dress is made with holographic leather and reacts to sound. As volume increases, it begins to illuminate and make what Winters describes as "visual music." The bathing suit reacts to light, with the center panel turning into purple dots in the sun.
  • Trackable Couture: Things can get lost pretty easily in those massive walk-in closets. In his fall 2013 collection, fashion designer Asher Levine included tracking chips that let items be located by the owner using a customized TrackR app. Levine, who has created looks for Lady GaGa and will.i.am., partnered with Bluetooth solutions company Phone Halo on the chip.
  • Adafruit: City bike-sharing programs such as New York's Citi Bike may be great, but the stations may be a bit hard to find without a map. Adafruit, a company that sells DIY electronics and kits, has built a helmet to help make that process more efficient. It has a built-in navigation system that uses lights that flash on the left or right to let the rider know where to turn.  The interface is still a bit complicated, though: The user has to manually enter the coordinates of a destination, but it is still safer than trying to use a smartphone while riding.
  • Ying Gao: Using eye-tracking technology, fashion designer Ying Gao has created a set of dresses that move when someone is looking at them. When the garment is gazed at for a time, tiny motors move parts of it in patterns. The dresses also glow. covered in photo-luminescent thread or featuring glow-in-the-dark threads that make up the base layer of fabric.
  • Sounds That Carry: The merger of technology and high-end accessory design is a definite trend. Handbag designer Rebecca Minkoff has made four clutches that encase speakers for Stellé Audio Couture.
  • A Sock With a Message: The start-up Heapsylon has a smart sock, Sensoria, that is paired with an anklet to automatically detect the type and level of activity based on pressure signals coming from the foot of the wearer. Sensors in the sock communicate data to the anklet, which then can relay the information to the user via an app. For example, it can track a runner's regular form and send an alert when he or she is making an injurious movement.
  • Close to the Heart: Even more intimate than smart socks, intelligent sports bras can track users' performance. This NuMetrix sports bar, made by Textronics, has a small transmitter that snaps to the garment to tracks a user's heart rate.
  • Light It Up: Berlin-based label Moon Berlin, which makes luxury clothing, focuses on using technology to enhance the look of its designs. Soft-circuit LEDs are integrated into the garments, connected to an electrical circuit attached to rubber-like materials that are integrated into fabrics.

The Issues and Questions

While some are creating products to enhance and expand your personal eco-system, others are quite skeptical about the trends because of the following:

  1. Privacy. One thing is poking finger into a touch screen in a public place, the other is talking to the device. Wouldn't people look like lunatics talking to themselves all the time?
  2. Practicality. How practical is it? Compared to poking an icon, sending and processing a voice command seems to take a lot more time, even with the best processing speed and the best voice recognition accuracy.
  3. Data Storage -  Who owns this data? How much of it belongs to the person and how much belongs to the brand? Where do you store all of your vitals?

Getting entrenched in the history

As computing moves from our desktops to our phones, we look into the future to see how technology will become increasingly ingrained in our movements and our active lives. Wearables have the possibility to make us more knowledgeable about ourselves and our surroundings, and connect us with each other in an uninterrupted, more intimate way. From DIY wearables to high-tech sensors and smart fabrics, the years ahead will show how integrated technology can impact our lives for the better.

Any thoughts on this trend?

[Sources: PBS, PSFK, CNBC, CNN, Ted Talks]

July 6, 2014No Comments

The Future of Digital Television

Investment banker Terence Kawaja, founder and CEO of LUMA Partners, is a big-time player in the advertising technology field. His advisory firm, LUMA Partners, has worked to help companies like Google and Yahoo make multimillion-dollar acquisitions, and his industry knowledge makes him one of the tech world's most respected minds. Kawaja has built this presentation after talking to people in the digital media business as well as people in the traditional "linear" television industry.

See a softer side of Kawaja in this four-minute music video Kawaja wrote and produced from the Cannes Lions advertising festival.

November 23, 2013No Comments

24 Hours of Happy

This week there has been a frenzy of music video innovation.  From Bob Dylan's Like a Rolling Stone Interactive video to Pharrell Williams, 24 Hours of Happy its we are seeing a music video comeback instead of throwback.  The website is at 24hoursofhappy.com and was created by French directing team We Are From LA and produced by Iconoclast.

When visiting the site, you join the clock at whatever the local time is. You can then check out different times of day and different scenes, all set to the sounds of Happy, which continues playing seamlessly throughout. Shot in different settings around the world, the footage features people dancing to the track: Pharrell pops up on the hour every hour, and there are cameos from other famous folks including Tyler, The Creator, Magic Johnson and Jamie Foxx.

Screen Shot 2013-11-23 at 7.38.26 AM

The website allows you to share specific moments with friends via Facebook or Twitter. This is a useful feature as, let's face it, not even the most ardent Pharrell fan are likely to watch the full 24 hours -- at least not while still liking the song.

Screen Shot 2013-11-23 at 7.36.05 AM

July 26, 20124 Comments

NBC & Facebook team up for Olympics coverage

Let the "Social Games" begin!  A new partnership between NBC and Facebook opens Olympic coverage through social media. NBC’s fans can tell their FB friends which Olympics-related videos and articles they're watching and reading. NBC & Facebook hopes that this will spurn more views and shares.

Screen Shot 2012-07-26 at 11.08.06 AM

The most interesting part will be number crunching the conversations afterward to see who should win the gold for Most Discussed on Facebook.  It’s amazing how far the bonds between social media, sport and TV have come since the last Games in 2008.

NBC & Facebook team up for Olympics coverage via @jpenabickley

July 23, 2012No Comments

Do Agile Demands Short Circuit An Insightful Design Method?

Now more than ever design matters. Now that I am back to my roots of video and mobile I have realized that Agile is here to stay. The economic difficulties of the past years as well as the focus on tangible innovation has almost shoved waterfall under the perverbial bus; now more than ever, long requirements phases and vaporous up-front documentation aren’t acceptable. Software must be visible and valuable from the start.  

The teams and clients we work with are undergoing their own dramatic changes. The shift of development processes removes the notion of "big design upfront." Instead, we sprint towards an incremental design process that lets us learn what our users need throughout the development process.

Adapting our design methods to fit this new way of developing brands is presenting some interesting challenges. The roles of "sprint zero" and the idea of staying one step ahead of the team is only taking us so far. I think we need to learn to create a driving vision and research-based principles that guide every decision from the team, not just those we have a direct hand in, to ensure a unified, thoughtful design that delights our users. 

In a world where best-to-market usually beats first-to-market how do you fuse data and insights into a new breed of design studio?  

Would love to hear your thoughts.




Do Agile Demands Short Circuit An Insightful Design Method? via @jpenabickley

September 13, 2011No Comments

24 Hours of #Reality


Al Gore, whose 2006 documentary, "An Inconvenient Truth," was the first PowerPoint presentation to ever win an Academy Award, is conducting a 24-hour presentation this Thursday to do what the two-hour film could not: convince skeptics that the link between climate change and extreme weather, like Hurricane Irene, is real.  Visit www.ClimateRealityProject.org  to get the full skinny.

I hope you'll join us here on POST DIGITAL, where we will carry the broadcast. Together, we're going to focus the world's attention on the scope, scale and impact of the climate crisis.  24 Hours of Reality begins at 7 p.m. Central Time on Wednesday, September 14. Over the course of the day, there will be 24 presentations across 24 time zones in 13 languages. We need your help!  

The Climate Reality Project's online toolkit is now complete with full resources for your involvement to spread the word about climate crisis online. Below is a list of how you can use the online toolkit to help The Climate Reality Project leading up to and during 24-Hours of Reality.


  • Donate your Facebook and Twitter feeds for 72 hours.
  • Embed the 24 Hours of Reality live broadcast on your blog.
  • Donate your website's homepage.
  • Watch the ads and share them with your friends.
  • Share the Denial Hits the Fan microsite.
  • Tag yourself Five Times for Reality on your personal Facebook page.
  • 'Like' the Climate Reality page on Facebook.
  • RSVP for the 24 Hours of Reality live stream event on Facebook. 
  • Follow @ClimateReality on Twitter.
  • ReTweet our content and/or message us directly @ClimateReality.
  • Use #Reality & #[your country] when calling out evidence of climate change.
  • Host a watch party in your community for your local 24 Hours of Reality live broadcast.



  • Embed the 24 Hours of Reality live broadcast on your blog.
  • Link to the live stream.
  • ReTweet our content and/or message us directly @ClimateReality.
  • Share/tag thoughts about how climate change is affecting your area and ask others to do the same.
  • Instruct your audience to use #Reality & [your country] when calling out evidence of climate change.


Cartoon Via The New Yorker

24 Hours of #Reality via @jpenabickley

June 27, 2011No Comments

on: the tesco virtual store

Imagine that on your walk home, every outdoor ad that you passed had a QR code that when scanned, would put the item into your shopping cart. As I stated in my post about the future of retail: The future of QR codes isn't about entering people into your sweepstakes. It's about making their lives easier.

This installation by Tesco, a market in South Korea actually puts a virtual store in unexpected places (like subway stations), and lets people shop with their phones.


Was This Effective? The move increased online sales by 133%, and made their chain the #1 online seller in Korea.

on: the tesco virtual store via @jpenabickley

May 5, 20113 Comments

on: qr codes – nailing the basics and adding value for consumers


QR codes are quickly becoming a part of any integrated marketing campaign. Also known as quick response codes, they are a useful way to encourage consumers to interact with a brand. They can be used to direct a magazine reader to a product’s ecommerce site, give additional product information or deliver a special coupon. 

Who is using QR codes?

According to a 2011 study conducted by marketing firm MGH, QR code awareness is high among smartphone users. One-third of them have used QR codes, and two-thirds have seen one. Users who were aware of QR codes tended to be more educated and affluent, and the majority used one to get a coupon or additional information. The largest majority of users were ages 35-54 and users were almost evenly split between men and women. As more well-known brands incorporate QR codes into their marketing campaigns, awareness is certain to grow in all demographics.

How do I use them effectively?

There are some very basic steps to take before employing a QR code in a campaign. Before trying the fancy stuff, ensure the basics are in place:

  • Give the potential user a website URL to download a code reader. Mobile-Barcodes.com has an extensive list.
  • The QR code should go to a site designed specifically for mobile.
  • The QR code should not be in a place with poor cell reception such as a subway stop or underground office.
  • Measure the success of QR codes with a trackable URL, which will provide stats on the number of QR code scans per hour as well as the devices used.

The most important thing to remember in effective QR code use is to provide value for the consumer. This can certainly be a coupon or promotion, but also think of information or a service as added value. An instructional video that provides information on how to use a product (along with selling points) provides value. So does services such as a Store Finder or ecommerce solution.

Unique applications

There have been some excellent examples of how to use QR codes to increase brand engagement by adding value for the user. Starbucks got an early jump on the movement with the Starbucks Card Mobile Application. Customers load an account with money, and the pull up their account’s QR code at the register for quick and easy payment. The QR code provides the added value of convenience and time saving.

In February, Jimmy Fallon broke the late-night show tradition of holding up the performing band’s album cover. Instead of the album, he flashed a QR code that led viewers to an exclusive music video. The clip became a trending topic on Twitter, magnifying exposure for both the band and Late Night with Jimmy Fallon.

Web-based event registration site Eventbrite experimented with using QR codes at registration desks. Whether it’s a conference or a concert, attendees hate waiting in a long line just to fill out an attendee form. When attendees registered with Eventbrite they were sent a QR code in their confirmation. Event coordinators quickly scanned the codes, gathering attendee information quickly and accurately.

These are just a few examples of the creative and engaging ways QR codes can be used. Think of the growing use of QR codes as an opportunity to develop new ways of engaging with the people who care about your brand.

Read more

on: qr codes – nailing the basics and adding value for consumers via @jpenabickley

December 17, 2010No Comments

on: word lense

Word Lense is one of the coolest apps in the iTunes store. The app takes an image stream from the iPhone's camera, applies real-time image processing and pattern recognition tricks to it, and it then "plays" with any text it finds in the scene before displaying it on the iPhone's screen. The PLAY part is the interesting bit. The app developer, Quest Visual, calls it a "real time translating app" and begs you to "turn your iPhone into the dictionary of the future--now!" The app comes with a toy option that lets you reverse words it recognizes in the scene, or delete them altogether.

on: word lense via @jpenabickley



Joanna routinely to speaks and keynotes at conferences, corporations, non-profits, educational and professional organizations. Her subject matter expertise is customized to meet the needs of each audience. 

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