Sunday, July 30, 2006

Brand overkill at Inorbit

I was quite disappointed at the way Inorbit Mall in Malad is looking these days. The bombardment of stalls, posters, stages, candy stands etc is overtaking the public space. One of the best things about Inorbit was its sense of space and the clean look in its public areas. Now, there is barely any space to walk as there one promotional stand after another, giving the mall an awful cluttered feel.

The central hall of the mall had a stage set up for a promotion of a perfume by Aigner, a flower stall on the ground floor, the 2 story long posters of a show on Star One, a Himalayan water stall on the 2nd floor, DNA newspaper stands by the food court, Kodak cameras stall opposite Shoppers Stop entrance, a personalized wood name plate stall by the mall entrance, candy dispensers in several locations....the list could go on and on.

We had mocha's at the Barista on the 2nd floor and even there, there was a profusion of brands, ruining the look of the cafe. Besides their promotional material on Illy coffee (which Barista had tied up with some time back), there are huge and unwieldy ABN Amro-Barista card promotions on each table and also as tray liners.

I find it terribly irritating and disrupting to be bombarded by brands and advertisements continually. I personally feel it ruins the entire look of the mall/store and creates a totally different atmosphere, taking away from the ambiance that was envisioned and created initially.

Nice reading

Some interesting information on a blog called Weaver.....I like the name and really like the byline...."Weaving through life to better understand innovation, communication, technology....all the things that make our lives in the modern world." Most articles on the site are related to business and technology, especially retail, strategy, retail software and the like. All in all a pretty good site.

Saturday, July 29, 2006

Are Self -Checkout lanes worth retailers ROI?

Self-Checkout lanes in supermarkets are becoming a common site in the US. The Wal-Mart store we visited in Fairfax, VA has them and I saw they were continously used, mostly by women though.

Evan Schuman writes in StorefrontBacktalk that while self-checkout lanes do save costs for retailers, they are responsible for substantially reducing purchase of impulse items.

The core of the problem is simply the way consumers interact with self-checkout systems. Typically, they have to pay much more attention to choosing a lane and to watching their products and scanning them, thereby leaving almost no time for browsing magazines or otherwise being tempted.

Read the full article here.


Action and reaction, ebb and flow, trial and error, change--this is the rhythm of living.

--Bruce Barton
From The Times of India, July 29th, 2006


Blogger sites are opening in India, mine included.

Friday, July 28, 2006

Ban still in effect

Well, still can't open my blog here in Bombay directly, but am able to access it through a site called thanks to which I have been able to see my new template and all the changes I have made on my blog.

Mental Cleansing

We all ought to wash our minds completely clean, as the trees are washed by the rain, because they are so heavily laden with the dust of so many centuries.

--J Krishnamurti
From The Times of India, 28th July, 2006

Thursday, July 27, 2006

Barcode Designs

Read about a very interesting concept on one of my favorite sites,, about a Japanese company that has created designs around barcodes. Its a superb concept and I hope to see it filter down to everyday products. So far only 15 companies are using these barcodes.

Read about it here: Repackaging Barcodes

Bombay blues

Back to Bombay...back to reality...the city seems to have gone from bad to worse in the month that we were away. Floods, bomb blasts, riots all have become part and parcel of the city. After the flood of 26/7/05, I wrote in a post titled Rained Out Mumbai that we need to stop going on and on about the spirit and resiliance of the city, because until we stop and realise how bad the situation is, nothing will change for the better. Thankfully, others in the city are coming to the same conclusion after the events in the past month.

Shobha De in Times of India: A city in sorrow
Pritish Nandy in Times of India: Time for anger, not sorrow
Surfers Corner in The Hindustan Times: Lauding Mumbai's spirit not enough
DNA Mumbai: Govt using Mumbai spirit to shy away from responsibilities
Sucheta Dalal in The Indian Express: Serve Mumbai’s spirit by tackling the rot

Wednesday, July 26, 2006


Back from our month long internet and blog free vacation to find that the Indian government has blocked most blospot and typepad blogs. Still can't open this blog here. Vacation notes and pics later.