Friday, August 26, 2011

New Mat Kearney Album

Since downloading Spotify, I've been able to listen to any song, anytime, in any order I like, for free! Best free music product out there right now compared to Pandora, Groove Shark, and the like.

Mat Kearny's new album is featured on Spotify and I've listened to the whole album like five thousand times. I love it! Hey Mama, Count On Me, and Sooner or Later are great, but my favorite is Chasing the Light. I'm so impressed at how the whole album is full of pretty great songs, not something that happens often.

I was first introduced to Mat a couple years ago with Nothing Left to Lose. I thought it was an interesting sound, but wasn't enthralled. But when I heard Closer to Love on his Pandora station I was sold! That song in particular was pretty popular on both secular and Christian stations.

So, basically what I'm trying to say is you need to do two things right now:
  1. Download Spotify
  2. Listen to the new Mat Kearney album

Thursday, August 25, 2011

New Product Development

I'm excited about my New Product Development class this trimester. It is one of the key courses professional marketers take in b-school. The class covers how to identify current issues in the marketplace using not surveys, but one on one interviews with consumers, then innovating using deduction. Consumers won't tell you directly what would be a good idea for a new product, you have to figure it out on your own with data. Henry Ford said "If I'd asked my customers what they wanted, they'd have said a faster horse", meaning customers don't always know what is best. Of course many of us have benefited from the development of his product. Apple doesn't do much surveying for that very reason and that is part of they they are so successful with the iPad, because they are good at creating artificial needs.

We will use a little calculus (which frankly I'm a little scared about because I'm terrible at it!) to interpret perceptual maps of customers's views of different products and their attributes. Using that data, companies can gain marketshare by creating products that fill certain needs. 

Part of the class is also learning how to forecast sales for a product that hasn't been sold yet or has a short history. A marketing professor by the name of Bass consulted RCA when color TV's were an emerging product. He predicted that in two years from the time they had him come on board that color tv sales would flatten. RCA disregard that information and invested a lot in production capacity because they thought there was virtually no limit to the future sales of their units. Turned out Bass was right and RCA lost a lot of money on that division.

I'm excited about this course and hope I can pick up a few things to know how to bring successful new products to market.

Sunday, August 21, 2011


Our ward temple trip was yesterday and we had over 30 people in attendance. It really is a blessing to have a temple in such close proximity. Going to the temple gives you the peace and strength. You can literally feel the presence of the Lord while standing in the walls of His holy house. The temple is sacred and set a part place. It provides protection and purpose through the ordinances and covenants offered therein. We learn the purpose of life and our relationship to our Heavenly Father.

Basically, the temple is super legit!

Friday, August 19, 2011

Chrome vs. Firefox?

No More Google Toolbar Support For Firefox
So I'm debating between Chrome and Firefox. It seems that in terms of speed and stability, Chrome is the leader. However, Firefox seems to have a few more features, like tab candy and app tabs. PDF viewing and syncing are integrated into both, although, I think the FF version is a little more complicated. Chrome's ability to reamin stable with multiple tabs open simultaneously is apparently slightly better than FF. Chrome does not have the added feature of HTTP pipeline, which actually gives Chrome more speed. Also, Chrome's combined address bar and search bar is really intuitive and convenient, especially with Google instant integration.

Full screen on FF has the ability to show or hide the nav bar, but Chrome hides it by default (until your cursor is in the area).

These are just a few examples. It seems Chrome is better overall, but that is based on only a few points.

What are the other key bencharks that should be compared to these browsers?

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

My New MacBook Air

So I sold my old MacBook Pro and upgraded to the recently released MacBook Air and it is super legit! When the first MacBook Airs were released in 2008, they were pretty groundbreaking in terms of their size and weight. Just under three pounds and only 0.11" thick at its thinnest point. While these puppies were aesthetically pleasing, the processors inside were very slow. Their first major update last year beefed up the horsepower and they began to become more like real computers, but not quite there yet. Apple then recently released the newest versions with the new Intel Dual Core i5 and i7's. Those chips are from last years MacBook Pro's, so now the Airs are on par with being a fully functional laptop. Plus they introduced the backlight keyboard for the first time on the Airs (trust me that was huge).

I've been very pleased with it's performance and my mind has been blown (figuratively, not literally as a friend of mine would say) by how light it really is. It will be a great companion for my last year of b-school. Here's to Apple for developing another breakthrough product!

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Death Cab for Cutie Concert

The concert was awesome! They played two of my favorites "Sound of Settling" and "Transatlantacism". I was really happy to hear "Sound of Settling", especially since Megan lied and said they played it before Dane and I arrived. Also, they played "Codes and Keys" from their new album,"I Will Follow You into the Dark", and "Soul Meets Body".

I was first introduced to Death Cab in 2003 through a friend and hear "Transatlantacism" and "Tiny Vessels" and really liked their songs. Then it wasn't until a few years later when I heard "Your Heart is an Empty Room" and "Cath" that I really started getting in to the band.

Ben finished the concert up by playing "Transatlaticism" and the energy was incredible! I love that song! Way to end the evening.

Monday, August 8, 2011

Last Week of the Internship!

Believe it or not, my nine week internship is about to end this Friday! It has been an absolute blast! I've really enjoyed the people, the function, the culture, and the company. Competitive Intelligence has been my role in the ATM channel and it has involved market research and partner updates with in the echannels at BofA. I've met many team members in various roles to do information gathering and idea generation. It has also involved conducting independent research on using primary, secondary, and internal resources.

Navigating BAC's matrixed environment has been really interesting as you are encouraged to network within the 300, 000 employee company. Most of the jobs are very dependent on collaborating with other associates and I found that true in my position. It was fun learning about new people and their roles and how to team with them on a project. I was also able to meet with the other full-time MBA's and learn about their experience in the Leadership Development Program.

I had a lot of fun with the other MBA interns as we created a intern social committee and planned activities for pretty much every day of the week! It was great to build relationships with interns from all over the country in various roles.

Tomorrow I give a presentation with three other interns to our program managers, direct managers, and executive champion. On Wednesday, I give my project presentation to my executive. This week is going to be intense!

The internship has been an awesome experience and I'm really glad I took the opportunity. Now I just have to find out if I get a full time offer! Time to cross you fingers!