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What We’re Reading: Tim Cook on Augmented Reality, NFL and Star Wars in VR, and much more | Marxent

What We're Reading

Welcome to another edition of What We’re Reading, Marxent’s weekly series featuring staff members highlighting the best articles, videos, music and more they saw over the prior 7 days. This week, those finds included stories from ABC News, Road to VR, YouTube and many more. Up first, it’s …

The Best Thing We Read This Week …


At Marxent, we’re always talking about Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality, weighing what makes each technology great, and comparing which is better for accomplishing different tasks. Which made it extra cool to see Apple CEO Tim Cook add his two cents to the mix, telling ABC News’ Diane Roberts that he favors AR over VR, and suggesting that AR may be more commercially viable because it allows users to be more “present.” Cook didn’t add, “And we can bake AR directly into an iPhone in a way we can’t with VR,” but we’re betting that thought has occurred to him.

The Best Thing We Heard This Week …


Marketing Creative Director Joe Johnson has more than an earworm — he’s got a band’s music following him around. Here, let him explain: “Pretty Lights is EVERYWHERE all of a sudden. I’m sitting in a coffee place in Seattle and I hear Hot Like Sauce and I think ‘WTF? Rad, Seattle is so cool.’ But then I’m sitting in like, an Applebee’s or something, and I hear Finally Moving and think, ‘Tampa’s not cool, am I getting old? Is the music I like already over the hill? Where am I?’ And finally, Rick Hanley is playing Lost and Found across from me at his desk, and I figure it out: Pretty Lights crosses jazz, EDM, hip hop, and any number of other genres in a blenderiffic fashion, making it possible for any music lover to find something to clutch dearly to their heart in his catalog.” That’s Joe’s personal favorite, One Day They’ll Know (ODESZA Remix), at the top of this section. Enjoy.

The Best Thing We Wrote This Week …

AR VR sports NFL business advice
Football is back, whether you’re ready for it or not. Senior Content Strategist Joe Bardi (aka, the guy writing this post) is definitely ready, and he put together a rundown of 4 ways the NFL is scoring with Virtual and Augmented Reality, and showing that what’s good for the league can also be great for other businesses — even those that don’t reap billions of dollars in profit per year.

But Wait, There’s More …


The Force is strong with Product Manager Vince Kilian, who dug this up: “Environmental artist John Lewis has designed a Star Wars fan’s dream: an insanely detailed and convincing replica of the 1977 film’s memorable Mos Eisley Spaceport. The demo was designed via Unreal Engine 4, which means that the logical next step for the team is adding a VR layer. That process is underway.” So you’re saying I will soon get to wander around inside the Star Wars universe? As if it were a real place? I think I speak for everyone when I say, SHUT UP AND TAKE MY MONEY!

At first I found it odd that Nick Kizirnis, who handles user experience strategy here at Marxent, would share a Storify article titled “Forget User Experience. Start thinking about Client Experience,” but Nick had his reasons. “Of course we don’t REALLY want to forget about our customers’ user experiences,” he wrote. “Instead, what Paul Boag from Shopify is encouraging us to do is break down the wall between sales teams and the UX teams: apply some of the great research techniques we use to understand our client’s customers to a better understanding of our clients. This article hits a number of points at a high-level, but provide great examples of how UX and sales can collaborate to build better client relationships.”

In honor of the centennial of Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, they’ve created a list of the 100 objects that shaped public health as we know it today. Sales Director Marcus Athari, who shared the list, found some real surprises contained within, and so will you.

After an office-wide discussion made mention of the philosophy of “pulling threads,” Sales Director Rich Manno was inspired to share “24 Business Insights I’ve Learned from Billionaire Dan Gilbert,” in which author Ted Serbinski, former DVP partner and Managing Director at Tech Stars, asks the Cleveland Cavaliers owner (and Marxent investor) about “pulling threads.” The pieces covers a range of other topics, and is a worthwhile read for anyone interested in some business wisdom.

And Finally …


“Travel to Isla Nublar as a VIP guest and explore Jurassic World,” promises the notes attached to the above video of Jurassic World: The Exhibition. “You will be greeted by Brachiosaurus on arrival through the main gates. Feed a Pachyrhinosaurus and her baby at the Petting Zoo enclosure or get up close and personal with Stegosaurus at Gyroscope Valley. Walk through the Hammond Creation Lab to view the Amber DNA extractions and view the ‘new arrivals’ that have just hatched. Tyrannosaurus Rex is about to be fed in Paddock Nine – but beware because … We have an asset out of containment!” Only bummer: You have to go to Melbourne, Australia to see it. For now, at least … look out, Philly!

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