Author Archives: Philip Berne

By day, Philip Berne works for a major mobile technology manufacturer. At night, he dons his Batman cape and cowl, pours himself a dram, and sits in a dark room contemplating the intersection of culture and technology. His opinions were originally his own, but have since been digitally enhanced by George Lucas.

Fanboys Are Crazy, Not Brand Loyal

Fanboys Are Crazy, Not Brand Loyal

The Internet has been abuzz this week with a column on the psychology of Fanboys. The piece, by David McRaney, basically dives into cognitive dissonance and its conflict with self-perception theory. These are two fairly well established principles, and McRaney is right to apply them here.

The logic is thus: our minds want to reinforce decisions we make, even when we're wrong. Our mind make a posteriori judgments, that is, we explain ourselves to ourselves after the fact. Are you upset that your Alienware laptop only gets 2 hours of battery life, while a MacBook Pro can go hours and hours without a charge? This emotion causes cognitive dissonance. That is, our minds drive us to think that our decisions are good and rational, so when we make a wrong decision, it creates a gap in our logic, a crevasse that must be filled. So, we fill it with illogical thinking.

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The Next Great Tech Rivalry

The Next Great Tech Rivalry

The consumer electronics industry has had its share of great rivalries. Apple vs. Microsoft; Microsoft vs. Google; Google vs. Yahoo; and though these companies surely remain in competition, the intense rivalries that drive product development and benefit the consumer have mostly faded. Apple and Microsoft may jockey for position in measurements of market capitalization, but they're both successful with dramatically different product categories now. Microsoft may want a piece of Google's search pie, but Google holds a commanding lead that seems unlikely to falter. And do I have to even explain how Yahoo is no longer competitive with Google?

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