Will online shopping in the Philippines become a more social, curated experience? That’s what JuanStore.com, a Philippine startup incubated by Hatchd Digital, hopes to do.
Check out my latest post for Singapore-based tech blog E27.
Here’s an excerpt:
Bullish that e-commerce can truly take off in the Philippines in spite of the challenges, JuanStore.com aims to combine two of the biggest passions of Filipinos – social media and shopping – into a winning strategy.
A startup incubated out of Hatchd Digital and launched in May, JuanStore.com provides a complete platform that allows sellers to quickly set up an online store and bring their own social networks into the ecosystem. As the company puts it: “You bring your friends. We bring everything else.”
Read the full story.
Why so serious, Snyder?
Don’t get me wrong; I find a number of things to like about Zack Snyder’s “Man of Steel” — at least in terms of concepts, if not execution. I just think Snyder still suffers from ADHD storytelling and tried to throw as many interesting ideas at the viewers without developing them or weaving them into a compelling tale. Sometimes less is more, and at 143 minutes this movie certainly had room for editing. Yes, the CGI was great, but if you don’t leave room for character development and interaction, then the film might just as well be a giant video game. Props to Snyder for showing just how titanic battles between earthbound gods should be, but how many times can you show scenes of destruction without these becoming repetitive and ultimately meaningless, especially if you don’t find a lot of reason to care about the characters? I don’t feel the movie has even shown why Superman should care about the human race, and why people should empathize and root for him. The movie sometimes becomes too tedious because characters have taken a back seat to concepts, and storytelling has been replaced by spectacle.
I appreciate what Snyder and the writers tried to do, even though a lot of it involved putting together a pastiche of different Superman comic books and themes from other superhero and sci-fi movies. I just think he could have used more editing and a lot more characterization. One of the things you should keep in mind is that this is a sci-fi film, not a superhero movie. It’s also been proven time and again that Snyder can painstakingly take comic book material and recreate them frame by frame on screen, like what he did for “300″ and “Watchmen,” but that he’s really a creator of spectacle instead of a storyteller. Also, that “Man of Steel” wants to emphasize the otherness of an alien who hasn’t felt he belongs in this world and in human society, and to make Superman a grittier and, well, less than ideal hero. The funny thing is that DC’s competitor Marvel has always had heroes who are flawed, but who rise to the occasion to do heroic things. Now we have DC’s latest attempt to make Superman less than perfect and more “relatable,” but I’m not sure how much of the hero they left in the process. Over 75 years, Superman has been alternately overpowered and depowered, and has always struggled to balance his alien and human sides. Yet for the most part he’s always strived to do what’s right and to live up to a standard that other heroes couldn’t reach. Take that away, and you might as well create a new character instead of slapping the name Superman on this stranger.
At the end of the day, “Man of Steel” is a great spectacle and a testament to digital magic, but it’s as generic a summer blockbuster, though on a much larger scale, as a Transformers movie.
Superman deserves better.
Here’s an excerpt from my latest e27 blog post.
If lately you’ve noticed a lot of people on your social networks posting cartoon versions of their faces, then you’re witnessing the iMadeFace craze.
This free iOS app from Keyloft has already reached the number one spot for free apps in the Philippines, Thailand, Indonesia, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Malaysia, Singapore, Korea, US, UK, Canada and other countries. In fact, you can see more and more examples of these cartoon faces on Twitter by searching for the hashtag #iMadeFace.
Read the full story. And check out this cartoon face my 11-year-old daughter Sam made.