Buyology: Truth and Lies About Why We Buy and the New Science of Desire

April 12th, 2009 No comments

Buyology: Truth and Lies About Why We Buy and the New Science of Desire Buyology: Truth and Lies About Why We Buy and the New Science of Desire by Martin Lindstrom

My review

rating: 4 of 5 stars
This is an interesting book to read. It started a more technical and objective way to measure consumers’ reaction to brands and marketing campaign. I believe the statement in the book that human beings are often poor reporters of their own actions. This has been proved in many other research area like psychology, linguistics, etc. At least the fMRI type of measurement is a very good complementary method, if not a better replacement, of normal marketing survey.

However, the more accurate the neuromarketing can gauge our brain, the more legislative enforcement should be put on marketing to prevent manipulative or deceptive marketing campaign.

A related topic this good combination of neuro-science and a domain research suggests some valuable opportunities in other domains like computer software usability research. UX researchers always said the user made the sense out of our UI and they got how to use it. But really? Shouldn’t they obtain some more objective measurement like fMRI. Eye tracking is a good step into this, but this still doesn’t fully describe their perceived evaluation of the overall experience of the software product yet.

View all my reviews.

Categories: Business Tags: ,

The Long-waited Kindle 2 is Announced Today

February 9th, 2009 No comments

(News below is cited from,2817,2340623,00.asp)

Amazon released the second iteration of its Kindle e-book reader Monday, a device that will hold up to 1,500 books, boasts 25 percent better battery life, and includes a “talk to me” feature that reads books aloud.

Read more …

Categories: Tech Tags: , ,

H-1B Visas: ‘Buy American’ Comes to TARP

February 7th, 2009 No comments
clipped from
It’s another attempt at requiring companies to “Buy American” – but in this case, not American iron or steel, but American workers.
The U.S. Senate voted on Feb. 6 to put stricter limits on banks and other recipients of taxpayer money through the Troubled Assets Relief Program, or TARP, that want to hire high-skilled workers from overseas under the H-1B visa program. The Senate approved the measure – introduced by Senators Charles Grassley (R-Iowa) and Bernie Sanders (Independent-Vermont) – by voice vote as an amendment the economic stimulus package President Barack Obama is urging the Senate to pass.
blog it
The result of using a wrong key to open the door is a broken key left inside the lock, which means a broken lock on a door that is even more difficult to open. Say you want to fix your car engine without paying a mechanic your hard earned money. Try fixing your self! You end up losing your whole day of time and probably your car too. Spend your quality time to improve your working skill, make yourself more competitive, earn more money so you don’t need to cut your car repair expense by mistake. It’s win-win-win for you, your car mechanic, and the whole economy.

Ask what’s the reason of less local IT workers! Don’t most American kids choose to pursue better jobs like lawyer, business, and politics rather than IT? Don’t let the country retrogress! It’s not easy for the US to come a long way till this point to be the world’s largest economy. Don’t screw it! When the world becomes flat, it’s dangerous to assume it’s still round.
Categories: Economy Tags: ,

Amazon’s Kindle Opens the New Era of Reading

November 22nd, 2007 No comments

Amazon's Kindle

Since a few years ago, I’ve been longing for a light portable library that can hold a couple hundred books, articles, and news papers in it and I can read anywhere when convenient.  I’ve tried a bunch of devices from Franklin to Palm and read about Sony’s Reader which, although features electronic ink technology, didn’t caught much popularity at all.  Amazon’s newly launched Kindle seems to begin to light up the candles of the portable reading.

It take much to build a electronic book reading device that could compete with paper books.  First of all LCD still causes much more eye fatigue than natual ink on paper.  The electronic ink technology in the Kindle could simulate natual ink and the ability of changing the font size is a plus for eye comfort.  Content quality is the next most important thing.  For example, the Acrobat Reader for Palm has to transform normal PDF files into a special format to be displayed on Palm.  It not only take a long time to transform, but also lose a lot of formatting for graphics, tables, and math formula.  Content collection is also a challenge, where Amazon definitely wins with its unbeatable collection of books, partnership with large content providers, a aggregation of community contents (e.g., blogs).  And don’t forget these can all be access wirelessly while you are on the go and they are fully searchable!  Isn’t that cool?

Since this is only the first version, there must be a lot that could be further improved.  While I’m reading, I like to see more per screen.  So while not change the physical keyboard into a touch screen and let the screen be as big as possible?  Kindle won’t have the dilemma as iPhone’s small touch screen keyword, because Kindle has bigger screen.  Even many people got use to the iPhone keyboard after practicing, Kindle will be even much easier.

It has been reported that due to the burgeoning advancement in digital multimedia content on TV and Internet, reading and literacy capability of young generation is decreasing.  Hopefully this cool gadget could bring books back into the competition with TV and Inernet.

Categories: Tech Tags: ,

Create an Animated GPS Like Driving Direction with Virtual Earth Map

September 6th, 2007 No comments

Link: Animated 3D Driving Direction

Reading map isn’t always an easy job for lots of people.  In Friends TV show, Joey put a paper map on the gound and step on it in order to get a sense which direction is right.  Though that’s a little bit of a extreme case, it illustrates the challenge.  Many people need more intuitive online maps too and especially the driving directions, so that they don’t have to put the computer monitor on the ground and step on it :)  Some GPS devices like TomTom came up with really nice 3D UI to show the driving directions in a much more intuitive way.


Live Virtual Earth Map provides a rich set of APIs with which interesting map applications could be developed, even in 3D and birds eye view.  As an example, I built an animated driving direction that kind of simulates TomTom.  Turn by turn the map will move as if you are driving and what you see is a view of 45 degree looking down from above your "car" and you can see clearly what road and intersection is ahead of you.


The basic idea is to call the routing API to get the itinerary with all segments of the driving direction.  For each segment, the map orientation will be adjusted so that the next point is right ahead and then pan to the next point while showing the textual turn by turn instruction. Some suggestion for the API is that the panning APIs are mostly asynchronized so that the calls return immediately while the actually panning is done a while later.  This causes a little bit trouble in showing the textual turn by turn driving direction in sync with the map animation.  Map events help to some degree, but still some work needs to be done to keep the map and text in sync, because events are generic and there doesn’t seem to be a way to assign per event instance parameters.  Also the detailed road of each segment is not available, so when the road between 2 points is not straight we can’t follow the curve of the road in order to simulate the exact driving experience.

Categories: Web Tags: ,

50 Best Websites 2007

September 1st, 2007 No comments

clipped from

From to Cellswapper and to Lastfm, we’ve chosen our favorite sites of the year.

  blog it

Categories: Web Tags:

Sun Changes Nasdaq Symbol To Java; Will Stock Perk Up?

August 25th, 2007 No comments

Sun Microsystems is going to leave the roots of its name — Stanford University Network — behind and change its listing on the Nasdaq stock exchange from SUNW to JAVA.

Sun itself was a preferred brand during the dot-com boom, with Sun Solaris servers and the Java programming language being a common part of dot-com infrastructure. But the 2001 bust hit Sun hard, including its stock price. It’s recovered somewhat from its January 2003 lows in the $2.60 range, but Sun is clearly hoping the Nasdaq name change will give it a boost. Its stock was trading at $4.90 by late afternoon Thursday, still at the low end of its $4.50 to $6.78 12-month range.

  blog it

I doubt this could help. The original image of the company is a mainstream industry leader making high end servers, UNIX operating systems, innovative initiatives (like NC), and of course the standards of the popular JAVA technology. Of course Java is successful and as SUN claimed it is developed into a "Java industry". But renaming the symbol sends a negative message that the power of the company is shrinking. People would think is Java the only thing left that is SUN’s success? And what? It’s free downloadable? Good luck.
Categories: Industry Tags: ,

Live Earth – 24 Hours Global Concerts for a Climate in Crisis

July 7th, 2007 No comments



  • Across 6 continents
  • 24 hours exclusive beaming on
  • 2 billion audience world wide
  • Organized in part by Al Gore
  • 150+ top bands

Categories: Web Tags:

Use Visual Studio to Quickly Locate Where the Exceptions are Thrown

July 5th, 2007 No comments

When there are a deep chain of function calls, especially when the managed and unmanaged code are intermingled together, it’s getting more trickier to debug.  One situation is that an exception is thrown deep at the bottom of the chain and caught at some level after it’s relaid/re-thrown by a couple of levels and the message logged by the exception handler code is too generic to help locating the root cause of the exception.  In this case Visual Studio could help locate where the exception is actually thrown at the beginning.  This helps a lot in narrowing down the problem when debugging in a large code base.

After loading the project into Visual Studio, bring up the exception dialog by menu "Debug" => "Exceptions…" and check the types of the exceptions that you want to investigate.  After this attach to the process in question.  Whenever the statement will cause exceptions to be thrown, it will prompt and let you choose whether to break at that trouble statement and do further investigation.

Categories: Programming Tags: ,

Yahoo! Mail Offering Unlimited Storage

June 14th, 2007 No comments


Yahoo! Mail begins to roll out unlimited storage today worldwide.  Feeling lucky that minutes after their announcement, I’m getting this great offer already.  Now I don’t need to worry about overflow any more. :)

Categories: Web Tags: ,