Two Brief Ideas: innovation joy and spiffing up Eventbrite

I’m developing the discipline to post more often, so I’ve put these two ideas together, because neither was really enough for a post.

Innovation Joy

Who would ever have thought that redeeming IRA shares could be described as a wonderful experience? Just got off the phone with the no-load industry leader (yep, you can google the term and find out about whom I’m talking). As an aside, for the terminally curious, why does that previous sentence relate to both Xerox and cellophane?

Well first off, this perky young woman gets my name right, so we set the stage. Then in the middle of her boring (but oh so mandatory) “required tax disclosures” I make a quip about “…Tim Geitner not following his own rules, so why should I?”

She broke out in full peal for a glorious five maybe eight seconds. Why is that important? Well, Virginia, not only is there a Santa Claus, but more importantly that Christmas cheer is designed to last all year. Donald O’Conner says it best in his classic, Make ‘Em Laugh from Singin’ in the Rain.

Sharing laughter opens up the human spirit and it is this shared spirit that secures the trust which opens up the brain to innovative ideas. Shared mental models are one of the classic system thinking styles or modes, so if you want to foster a more productive, more innovative culture: play nice, share your toys, have fun.

Spiffing up Eventbrite

I first learned of the @eventbrite folks at Austin’s TechRanch, where I went through the Venture Forth program.

When it came time to actually put my first event together,, I discovered that the service is way cool, (and no-added-fee for free events!), yet the resultant html seems circa 2006 or earlier, or some sorta funkadelic hybrid between css and html2(!). To get the service mark symbol to render correctly (see the large type at the very bottom of the flyer), required some custom in-line CSS. If we just use the <sup> markup, that doesn’t simulate small caps well, doesn’t raise it high enough to reach standard print placement, plus it messes with the intra-line height (within the paragraph), so the result is just not rendered well. First the answer, then the sources. This css will render what you see on the flyer:

Servicemark positioning on Eventbrite flyer

<span style=”font-color:#003145; font-weight:bold; font-family:Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif; font-size:2.5em;”>Systemkey&#8482; unlocks better ideas. For you. For your company.<span style=”line-height:1.4em;”> For good.</span></span><span style=”font-size:10px; vertical-align:top;”>SM</span>

With a little help from my friends…

I consulted the following for constructing my span style inline css:

As ever, Carpe Diem!


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