Historical Advertising Study: The Camera

The camera is an object that has been developed and redeveloped over the years to bring about a revolution in the way we “see” things. With the popularity of this electronic device growing immensely ever since it’s inception, companies that develop the camera have been coming up with creative advertising campaigns to sell their product to consumers. When the camera first hit the market, inventors believed that the device could sell itself, which is why advertisement campaigns surrounding the camera were very rare in the late 18th century. Since Kodak paved the way to technological advancement when it came to the development of the camera, they produced some of the first advertisements for the camera and consequently had the widest reach in terms of audience. George Eastman, founder of Kodak, was considered to be one of the key factors behind the popularization of the camera. His work with the development of the device helped bring the camera to the common man and made photography a mainstream phenomenon. Entering the market with a simple yet catchy slogan that read “you press the button, we do the rest,” Kodak made capturing images sound extremely simple. Eliminating the public perception of a cumbersome, complex process behind clicking pictures, Kodak’s advertising campaign was the main component behind its success in the past. In fact, today’s Kodak is known not only for photography, but also for imaging applications that can be used in a variety of industries.

The first advertisement by Kodak published in a popular magazine nearly a year after the invention of the camera was a very small image placed onto the bottom of a page. This picture was very basic in terms of design and only looked to incorporate the essentials. Since the computer wasn’t a very advanced design tool at the time, a hand drawn picture of the camera was the highlight of the advertisement when it came to graphics. Kodak’s slogan, “you press the button, we do the rest,” was emphasized in the center of the advertisement along with the name of the company. Kodak uses its brand value or ethos to attract audiences. Known as one of the largest producers of cameras and photography related products at the time, choosing to highlight the name of the company would create great awareness amongst the audience. Another very important component of this advertisement that attracts attention is the caption that goes along with the slogan, which reads, “the only camera that anybody can use without instructions”. This caption appeals directly to the audience through persuasion as the company tries to convince potential customers that it is extremely easy to operate a Kodak camera. The rest of the advertisement focuses on providing important information such as price and sellers information. At this point in time, it was very important for the company to advertise wisely as the camera had just been introduced to the world. Spreading the word and successfully publicizing the object would be the key to its success in the future.

Another advertisement that was published by Kodak as a result of the success of the camera came in contact with the public through the means of a magazine. This time, the company decided to publish a full-page advertisement to increase the reach of their campaign and build on to their consumer base. This advertisement, unlike the previous one, was more colorful and used an actual image as its central component. Published in the year 1913, this advertisement was created by the company with the intention of improving on the quality of the previous campaign. The first thing that grabs the attention of the viewer here is the large picture that takes up more than half of the page. This image is a colored sketch of a couple holding up their Kodak camera whilst they are out at sea on their boat. The lady that has been captured in this image is holding up the camera as if it were a trophy, a proud possession that she values greatly. The man in the background is smoking from a pipe and is wearing fancy clothes, telling us that the couple is well off and extremely happy with their purchase. The caption below this image reads: “At the moment- the fun of picture taking- afterward the joy of possession. There’s all this for those who keep the personal story of their outings with a Kodak.” Here, the advertisement appeals to the audience’s pathos in talking about the “joy of possession” and the “fun of picture taking”. This advertisement is trying to highlight the fact that photography can be an enjoyable hobby and that the camera is an essential purchase for every family. The image of the couple on the boat suggests that the company is looking to appeal to a certain target audience, as the duo seems to be well off financially. Finally, another striking aspect of this advertisement is the way the name of the company has been highlighted. “Kodak” has been written in bold print across the page. As mentioned earlier, this decision appeals to the consumer’s logos and urges the public to purchase this product with the comfort of brand value.

The final advertisement published by Kodak in the year 1919 in the “Country Gentleman” magazine looks to attract a specific audience by pin pointing their target consumer. The central element of this full-page advertisement is the black and white picture of a bull. Unlike the advertisements that were discussed previously, this commercial contains an actual image taken by the advertised product. Looking to attract readers of the “Country Gentleman” magazine, this advertisement has been tailored specifically to grab their attention as seen through the incorporation of the image of the bull. As opposed to a picture of something scenic, the head of the campaign chose to use this picture as it appeals to the target audience. A small box towards the end of the page contains the text component of the advertisement and contrasts the image in the background to stand out. Yet again, the name of the company has been highlighted to create logos and enforce the credibility and reliance that comes with the name that is “Kodak”. Further, the caption says “YOU can take pictures like this- can make a Kodak album of everything that interests you. It’s simpler and less expensive than you think.” Like the previous advertisements, this one looks to create pathos and appeal to the audience by putting emphasis on something the target audience would appreciate.

In conclusion, it can be said that Kodak has followed a very similar advertising model over the years. Relying heavily on their brand name, the company has always decided to put emphasis on the name of the company, making it the first thing the audience sees. Another observation that can be made on the basis of the analysis of these advertisements is that the company resorts to advertising through the means of magazines and selects its target audience on the basis of the readers of the given magazine. Finally, Kodak always puts the power in the hands of the consumer, appealing to their emotions and making them believe that this product would be perfect for them.


Works Cited:

Kodak. “The Kodak Camera” [K0538]. Advertisement. 1889. Duke U. Rare Book and Manuscript Lib. Ad* Access. Web. 1 Dec. 2014.

Kodak. “The Kodak Camera” [K0163]. Advertisement. 1913. Duke U. Rare Book and Manuscript Lib. Ad* Access. Web. 1 Dec. 2014.

Kodak. “Kodak” [K0280]. Advertisement. 1917. Duke U. Rare Book and Manuscript Lib. Ad* Access. Web. 1 Dec. 2014.

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Lauren McCarthy’s Apps

Lauren McCarthy developed two social networking applications called “Crowdpilot” and “Inneract”. These two applications have redefined the social definition of networking and association. Crowdpilot is an application that people use to seek daily advice from one an other. Everyday activities can be recorded on to the application and crowdsourced for a series of advice from total strangers. From dating tips to dressing advice, Crowdpilot can be used for a range of doubts. Inneract on the other hand is a similar application created by Lauren McCarthy with a completely different goal. Inneract looks to connect people with similar interests in the spur of the moment and allow them to meet at a particular location to share certain aspects of their day together. As shown on the company’s website, for example, an individual can ask to share their meal with a complete stranger and the application would direct these people to one and other.

In my opinion, McCarthy’s applications are very different from any social networking applications I have come across so far. Although applications like Twitter and Instagram come close in terms of updating followers about your daily activity, the idea of being in touch with complete strangers at all times is out of the question when it comes to these applications. Facebook is another social networking tool that uses a very advanced privacy tools to ensure that two complete strangers don’t come across each others profiles unless they intend to do so. Although these applications are deemed to improve social interactions on a very high level, I believe that McCarthy’s applications do a far better job at connecting people with similar interests.

While Crowdpilot looks to help individuals seek advice from their community, Inneract allows them to find people with similar sets of interests. Not only do these applications improve social networking on the whole, they enhance the process of meeting new people and making friends. While some people may find the idea of making new friends extremely daunting, McCarthy’s applications improve this process drastically, refining your interactions and restricting them to allow you to meet people who you are truly compatible with. Crowdpilot can be used to smoothen the process of getting to know someone and Inneract can let you meet people who are just like you. Although these applications may not fall under the constraints of conventional social networking applications, they are definitely effective means of communication today.

Conversacube

Lauren McCarthy’s Conversacube is an invention that I came across on the Abler blog. The Conversacube has been designed with the purpose of facilitating conversation and helping strangers avoid awkward situations while interacting with one and other. Coming in various shapes and sizes, the Conversacube uses voice recognition to comprehend the direction of the conversation and suggests certain words on the basis of what it has heard so far to further the interaction between two individuals.

The tagline supporting the Conversacube as posted on Lauren McCarthy’s website is to help “avoid uncomfortable conversations”. From what I’ve seen through various videos and reviews for this product, the Conversacube is definitely an effective piece of technology that can be used to strike a conversation between a group of people who would be incompatible otherwise. This is one of the first technological inventions I have come across that can be used to better social interactions in person. I was very fascinated by the Conversacube when I first saw it and found that its sleek look makes it a very appealing device. The creator has made the object available in various sizes making the box like Conversacube extremely portable.

Although this invention could prove to be revolutionary in promoting social interactions during the age of technology, I believe that its widespread appreciation could also hinder the importance of conversation and dialogue. Having to depend on a piece of technology to drive conversations would leave us socially disabled, thus contradicting the purpose of its invention in the first place. Moreover, the Conversacube would defeat the purpose of interaction and eliminate the element of surprise that makes conversations so very exciting.

The first time I saw it, I was thrilled at the idea of such an object and believed that its portable nature would lead to global recognition. Having looked at the invention in further detail, I came to the conclusion that it could prove to be a social disaster. Even though the Lauren McCarthy’s intentions involve the promotion of face-to-face interactions, the Conversacube would make these exchanges materialistic and futile.

Epilepsy Research Project

As an IB graduate, research was given immense importance during the formative years of my high school career. I still remember each assignment very clearly. Rather then depending on our teachers for all the information we needed, the educational framework was designed in a way that encouraged the students to discover new ideas for themselves and be able to form their own opinions about controversial topics. For me, the most important research projects I had conducted came early on in my school life.

Soon after, my Aunt introduced me to her work with Epilepsy and the science behind it. I offered to help her by creating an e-kit to educate students at my school and other schools. We also donated some e-kits to various local hospitals for use in their operations. My goal as a contributor was to increase awareness about Epilepsy in order to diminish the common misconceptions that are related to Epilepsy by the everyday man. These misleading opinions are the sole cause to the growth of the disease in our community.

In order to achieve my goal and spread awareness about Epilepsy, I decided to assist the individuals in my community who have been diagnosed with the disease. To tackle this major issue, I created an e-kit consisting of material, which would help spread awareness about the condition. Once someone had been through the contents of the e-kit, they would have the ability to assist a patient during the course of a seizure. The e-kit would also educate the person about the disease, getting rid of any misconceptions or doubts that were originally in their minds.

The process of successfully creating the e-kit, as mentioned above, required various sources of information using which I could gain knowledge about my selected topic. In order to increase my knowledge about Epilepsy I conducted various interviews and visited seminars through which I had the privilege of meeting world-renowned individuals, known for their work in the field of Epilepsy. Apart from these primary sources of information, I exploited secondary sources of information as well, by looking through newspaper articles, watching movies and going through brochures as well as posters.

I believe my research stage was extremely successful. This is mainly because I used an array of sources in order to create a holistic final research report looking at which I could easily create my final product. Conducting this research allowed me to give back to the community in the form of a e-kit. Contributing to those who are not made aware of this very serious disease made me very sensitive to such illnesses and gave me a sense of accomplishment in being able to conduct such a research project.

The Adventure of the Cardboard Box

Sherlock Holmes is a fictional detective created by Scottish author Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. A British “consulting detective”, Sherlock is known for his ability to transform minute details into large hints, which go on to serve as breakthrough discoveries in all his cases. His uncanny ability to make astute deductions coupled with his misguiding disguises make it extremely easy for him to solve even the toughest cases. Appearing in a number of novels, short stories and film adaptations, Sherlock’s character has been widely appreciated throughout the world.

I believe that Sherlock Holmes and his adventures would definitely classify as great works of literature. Having read “The Adventure of the Cardboard Box”, one of his short stories, I can definitely say it is the type of literature students of appropriate ages would enjoy. The second of the twelve short stories in the Memoirs of Sherlock Holmes collection, this is one of Doyle’s shorter works. Made up of easier, more straightforward deductions, this short story gives the reader a glimpse into Sherlock’s abilities and takes on the crime/ mystery theme extremely well.

Analyzing the structure of the story, Doyle incorporates a build up to the crux of the narrative and creates a convincing climax for the reader. The rising and falling action are important aspects of the story that are catered to by the unpredictable character of Sherlock Holmes. These components of the story make “The Adventure of the Cardboard Box” a very exciting read. I am convinced that this story is appropriate for reading in schools. Seeing that schools look to teach literature through the means of well-written compositions, Arthur Conon Doyle’s works promise us a range of writing techniques that have been used extensively to put together a very stimulating narrative.

Reading about the adventures of Sherlock Holmes through the accounts of his trusty “sidekick” Watson, we are able to delve into his character and his thought process. I believe that the progression of events within this particular story has been covered extremely well. Doyle captures Sherlock’s thought process and makes the reader a part of his analytical approach. Being able to create such a dynamic character is a very important aspect of story writing and definitely makes this series a stand out.

I would like to conclude by saying that Doyle’s “The Adventure of the Cardboard Box” is a story that does, without doubt, meet my expectations of what literature should be like. Having read various other short stories during my high school tenure, I would loved to have read the Sherlock Holmes series as a part of my literature class. A gripping story with a flawless build up and a convincing climax, this is one of my favorite Sherlock Holmes mysteries.

Beautiful Handwritten Letters

Theodore Twombly is a “writer” and the protagonist of the movie “Her”. Directed by Spike Jonze, this movie is set in the future and looks at a time and age where things are very different from the world we are used to. Theodore Twombly works as a ghostwriter, authoring surrogate letters on behalf of lazy customers. Surprisingly enough, Theodore manages to write beautifully written letters to unknown people. His employer, “www.beautifulhandwrittenletters.com” provides a very effective service to spouses, relatives and siblings too. Getting so engrossed into his job, Theodore reaches a point wherein he has to instruct his phone to “play melancholy song” to be able to evoke his own emotions after stepping into his customers shoes.

When I first saw Theodore at his desk punching keys into his keyboard I was pleasantly surprised. Even though the first reaction to a job of this nature will be disapproval, I am of the belief that services like these allow people to maintain relationships with their loved ones even in this time and age. With people struggling to maintain contact with those they would normally hold close, Theodore’s ghostwriting services keep these bonds intact. Theodore is extremely good at his job and manages to please his customers with every personalized letter. He is able to vent out his feelings and convert his emotions to words through the medium that is his work. Although people may argue that the commercialization and creation of an industry such as this promotes artificial love, I believe that it is the glue that keeps bonds together. As we see his character develop through the course of the movie, from the divorce to his relationship with Samantha, we can understand that he is perfect for the job. Apart from his writing skills and his ability to draft the perfect letters for the given relationships, Theodore feelings make him the right employee for “Beautiful Handwritten Letters”.

I understood that the director’s intention behind creating this job for Theodore was not as shallow as the audience would have comprehended it to be. Spike Jonze was trying to create a parallel relationship between Theodore and Samantha as compared to all the loved ones Theodore writes for. The fabrication of relationships, a prominent theme within the film, is emphasized through Theodore’s job. In conclusion, although I wouldn’t use this service myself, I wouldn’t look down at people who do. In the time and age that this movie is set, a job of this nature is bound to be successful. For people devoting all their time to material possessions, services like “Beautiful Handwritten Letters” are priceless assets.

Facebook for Dummies

Facebook for Dummies

What is Facebook? Facebook is the social networking site that has taken over the world. It is a website that allows you to share status updates, photos, videos and other information about yourself to with your “friends”. This guide will help you understand how to find your friends, share your life with them and stay updated when it comes to your surroundings. Personal Details: When you first join Facebook, the registration survey will ask you a list of basic questions that will eventually make up your basic profile. In order to ensure that you are keeping your followers updated, try to make this information as comprehensive as possible. From your e-mail address to your phone number, followers will have easy access to all your information at the click of a button. Profile Picture: Your profile picture is probably the most important aspect of your Facebook page. When your friends try to contact you through this application, this is the first thing they will come across. It is highly recommended that you upload a clear picture of yourself that has been taken recently to avoid confusions regarding friend requests. Essentially, this picture represents you on the social networking platform. Finding Friends: Facebook allows you to find your friends through email and import your contacts from a range of other services. It helps to look up friends from high school and browse through their friend circle to get in touch with common acquaintances or fellow peers. Another nifty tool is the “People You May Know” feature. This is Facebook’s way to connect you with friends. Communicating With Friends: Once you’ve compiled your database of friends on Facebook, you’d want to keep in touch with them on a regular basis. Facebook Messenger is a very useful instant messaging tool that allows you to message friends in real time. Apart from this, you can also leave behind short messages on your friends “walls” or tag them in posts that made you think of them. Posting, Updating & Uploading: Updating your ‘timeline’ is one of the most important aspects of maintaining your Facebook profile. This is where your friends can communicate with you in public. Updating this page will give them access to important information such as birth date, e-mail address, current job, hometown etc. Further, you should look to update your status posts from time to time in order to tell your friends what you’re up to at all times. Facebook started off as a trend. Today it is a necessity. It is no longer an intimate exchange of messages and ideas but has become a public forum. Keep an eye on your privacy settings and avoid giving unknown people access to all your information. Just give Facebook some time and before you know it, you’ll be hooked. This networking platform is a social prerequisite in today’s day and age. If you don’t have Facebook, you’re missing out on a revolutionary way to stay in touch with the ones you know and make new friends while you’re at it.

Code Switching & Pillow Talk

Brad’s prank takes advantage of an idea summed up in the Southwestern Bell Telephone Company slogan from 1923: the idea that “Your Voice is You”. This slogan can be used to a great extent as a means to describe the movie ‘Pillow Talk’. The 1959 movie follows musician Rock Hudson and interior designer Doris Day, two individuals who are obliged to share a telephone party line (a very common phenomenon at the time). Naturally, their calls overlap at the least opportune times, and just as naturally, this leads to Hudson and Day despising each other without ever having met in person. The movie looks at how their relationship changes over time and Brad’s “voice” has a lot to do with this.

When Brad first sees Jan at a party, he realizes that she is indeed the other branch to his party line, the person that hates him passionately. Further, he also comes to acknowledge the fact that she is the lady Jonathan has been trying to pursue. Having understood the importance of the situation, Brad decides to conceal his identity and approach Jan. Very convincingly; he portrays himself as a wealthy businessman from Texas named Rex Stetson. This is the first incident wherein we see Brad changing his accent completely to cover up his true voice. Code switching plays a huge role here, as Brad and Jan’s first face-to-face conversation is indeed “fake”.

Brad continues to speak with Jan as both the Texan Rex as well as himself. He maintains the relationships Jan shares with both voices until he realizes he’s in love with her. Jan falls in love with Rex and his voice. Ironically enough, she despises Brad, the real voice behind Rex. Again, this is another case of code switching as Brad has managed to woo Jan by merely changing his voice. The lady who hated him a few weeks ago is now in love with him simply because he managed to change his voice. With this in mind I would definitely agree with the telephone company slogan “Your Voice is You”. Brad manages to forge two identities that share relationships with Jan by changing his voice.

Jan is unable to catch Brad red handed and only understands that Rex is a sham when she comes across some of his music. Despite having faced betrayal at the hands of Brad, she ends up giving in to his proposal and concedes to his love. The two get married at the end of the film. The relationship shared by Brad and Jan is a very prominent example of code switching. The bond they share is based solely on his behavior around her and most of all, the “voice” he puts on. This emphasizes the fact that your voice really is a true depiction of your personality and your ability to create relationships.

The Shadow Scholar

Recently, I read an article online that led me to question the academic community and it’s policies. Having found out that a ghostwriter named “Ed Dante” completes assignments for students, I no longer know what to believe. When students walk up to my desk during that first lecture of the day, I’m always thrilled to take in their assignments and have a look as soon as I’m done for the day. Reading my students assignments gives me a sense of accomplishment. I can safely say to myself that they’ve grasped the concepts I taught them in class. In cases wherein students fail to complete their assignments, I can be assured that they’ll work harder in the future or come to me for assistance. This however, is one scenario I didn’t think I would have to deal with.

I don’t know where to start. Is our ghostwriter Dante wrong for his unethical business choices? Or is it the students who request his services in the first place? The man earns a whopping $70,000 per annum! I wouldn’t be able to earn that much correcting papers for the rest of my life. The students on the other hand are under pressure. Taking up more activities, courses and assignments than they can handle singlehandedly. The fact that this matter had to be thrown out into the open by one of the perpetrators himself is what comes off as horrifying to me. This business could be going on for years! I’ve lost count of the number of students that excelled in my class. To think that a certain percentage of those very students who sat in my classrooms turned in assignments that weren’t their own? This has to be stopped.

Mr. Dante has done everything for his customers. From college essays to homework assignments in an array of subjects (including my own). He serves these students without any questions, merely through a monetary transaction. His students range from graduates and PhD candidates to students who can barely spell, customers from all these categories being “desprit” for his services. The fact that some of his students can’t even spell correctly was a shocker! Seeing as many of these students come from recognizable academic institutions, this problem shouldn’t arise in the first place!

Through my teaching career I always negated the differences between in class performance and results on homework assignments. There were always certain groups of students who’d do extremely well on the homework assignments but fare miserably on the class assessments. Before having read this article, I’d pass that off as a “bad day” for the student or classify the result of the class test as an anomaly. Now my misconceptions have been straightened out. From today onwards, my class policies will undergo various changes. Transitioning from a classroom environment where homework is given more importance than classwork, I’ll ensure that the in-class assessments are reviewed thoroughly and examined closely. As a teacher I hope that these incidents reduce in number so that we as members of reputed academic institutions can churn out capable students.