I've recently bought a book I used to own when I was younger.
I used to really enjoy looking at it. It has some great illustrations in it, and highlights key moments in football to exemplify coaching techniques. Great pieces of play like the amazing save Gordon Banks makes against Pele:
(Aren't those illustrations amazing?)
When I was a kid I used to look at these illustrations in wonderment. I used to imagine how good the saves were in real life, and hope that one day I'd see them on a TV show or compilation VHS I could borrow from a friend. The Gordon Banks save is very famous, so I did get to see that at the time I think.
You see, at that time there was no YouTube. There was no internet. The only chance I had of finding those clips was by chance. There was much more chance of the content being pushed to me, as I didn't know where to ask to get the content and thus there was little chance of me pulling it toward me.
But now the world is different. And pretty much everything is at my fingertips.
The other day I remembered this book and bought it second hand on Amazon. I wanted to see the illustrations again, but more than that I wanted to make it a book for now. And add another layer to it. To add a Second Interest Layer.
(Whilst we've all got an opinion on QR codes and how good (or not) they are, it serves a purpose for this.)
I now have an exciting experience ahead of me of searching YouTube for the myriad amazing footballing moments the book covers. And with a simple QR code I can make the book a lot more interactive.
This not only adds another layer of interest for my experience, but it makes it a little more interesting for other people looking at the book for the first time.
And this got me thinking... why can't we do this with everything? Why can't we make every second hand product more interactive and add another layer of interest to it? (I touched on this here)
What If... a second hand musical instrument could tell you who owned it, where it had travelled, the venues it had played, the genres it had been used for?
What If... a second hand piece of clothing could tell you how many times it had been washed, when it was manufactured and what that stain was?
What If... a second hand book had the thoughts and comments of the previous owner sitting in the margins?
These are just some bad examples of a Second Interest Layer I'm interested in. The inherent history and emotions associated with a product. Howies looked at something similar for their Hand Me Down range.
What If... all these stories were kept in one place?
One website where I enter a code (or take a pic of my object, scan a barcode or RFID tag etc) and it explains the Second Interest Layer to me. This would depend upon the owner inputting the data for products already manufactured but any new products could have this built into them, whether it be an RFID tag or some other smart chip. As I mentioned here in Contagious, some objects like smart phones have amazing capabilities to enable clever things to happen automatically. (And we know they can, even if we don't want them to.)
What If... just What If...