Archive by Author

Real Life Tron

18 Jun

ENVISION: Step into the sensory box. Under this name hides the immersive experience offered by Alcatel-Lucent to its customers at the last Mobile World Congress. An experience-based video mapping designed by the agency and the Department SUPERBIEN New Media Agency \ Auditorium. The public was invited into a cube and discover an artistic vision of the tagline of the event: Transforming the mobile experience.

ENVISION : Step into the sensory box from SUPERBIEN on Vimeo.

There seems to be quite a bit of speculation as to how exactly it was done. But, by any method, the outcome is absolutely stunning.

http://vimeo.com/10692284

Un Verano En Nueva York

15 Jun

This is a Fools Gold mix by @Neal Santos that is his take on Summertime in NYC. It’s mostly classic salsa that you’ll be sure to hear in all of the bodegas and handball courts in the city. Listen to this mix a couple times and you’ll certainly start to recognize the sounds you hear when you’re out & about. It’s perfect timing for me as I have recently started taking formal spanish classes and need to get my vocabulary up!

Tracklist:

1. Bobby Valentin – El Caiman
2. Tommy Olivencia – Trucutu
3. Joe Cuba – El Pito
4. Cortijo Y Su Combo – Tuntuneco
5. Africando – Yayboy
6. Kako Y Cortijo – Que Le Paso
7. Kako – Ala Berdeque
8. Ismael Rivera – Quitate De La Via Perico
9. Ismael Rivera – Ahi Na Ma
10. Cortijo – Severa
11. Celina Y Reutilio- El Carretero
12. Ismael Rivera – Deja Lo Que Suba
13. Johnny Ventura – Patacon Pisao
14. Fernandito Villalona – Felix Cumbe
15. Fernandito Villalona – El Negro Esta Rabioso
16. Fernandito Villlalona – Taboco Y Ron
17. Johnny Ventura – Abusadora
18. Julio Voltio – El Mellao
19. Julio Voltio – Julito Maraña
20. Khriz Y Angel – La Vecina
21. Oscar De Leon f. Tego Calderon – Lloras
22. Jerry Rivera – Amores Como El Nuestro
23. Eddie Santiago – Lluvia
24. Los Adolecentes – Me Tengo Que Ir
25. El Gran Combo – Si Dios Fuera Negro
26. El Gran Combo – Un Verano En Nueva York
27. Hector Lavoe – Aguanile

you can download the mix here.

James Roper

11 Jun

James Roper is an artist & illustrator from Manchester, English who showed in New York last summer. Unfortunately I missed his show, but have ever since been enamored by his work. After doing a bit of google kung-fu I was able to find his website and more examples of his work: http://jroper.co.uk/

Artist and Illustrator James Roper

Artist and Illustrator James Roper

Accelerator

Autosarcophagy

negator

http://jroper.co.uk/

A Moment in Time – New York Times

11 May

 A Moment in Time

On Sunday May 2nd, 2010 at exactly 15:00 U.T.C the New York Times asked their LENS readers to take a photo, wherever they were located and doing whatever they were doing, and submit it to their site.

The result is a 3D globe with images stacked accordingly to their geographic vacation. Although the locations and subject matter changes, the time does not.

 A Moment in Time

It’s a really cool experience browsing around the world and checking out the mix of pro and amateur shots, and as the article implies, an enormous time vacuum.

You can read the article here, and view the results here

Co-viewing TV

7 May

I recently cut my cable bill in half. Slowly but surely I’m moving towards a more DIY entertainment solution – streaming Netflix, utilizing XBOX and a digital media server. It’s all very exciting; researching new techniques and solutions to get the best home entertainment experience. One thing on the horizon in particular has caught my attention, co-viewing.

Co-viewing is simply a term for sharing in the experience of watching TV. At it’s core, it’s just a more modern version of talking on the phone to a friend while both of you watch the same TV show.

Talking on the phone while watching TV seems like a horrible idea to me, and I’ve never tried it. But I do often talk about movies and TV shows with my friends and coworkers the day after I watch something. Sometimes, if I find a show or movie particularly engaging, I’ll go online and read IMDB or other message boards to get more information.

I think that co-viewing is a step in the right direction. It isn’t as up-front as talking on the phone and it is a great way to get real-time commentary and supplemental information about whatever I am watching.

That is great from a viewer’s perspective, but co-viewing is also great from the networks perspective. It will become much easier to deliver personalized programming to consumers. Imagine having a choose your own adventure TV show or commercials customized to products you actually like. Networks would be able to get real-time feedback on their content and user could participate in more live contests (just think about what that means for ‘reality’ TV).

It’s also not that far off, MIT’s Technology Review has placed it on their top annual top 10 emerging technologies. MTV, among other networks, are already developing a social TV iPad application. As both the technology and the devices become commonplace I think out everyday TV experience will change.

For more information, check out these links:
http://www.allbusiness.com/technology/software-services-applications-internet/12387917-1.html
http://nicofell.wordpress.com/2010/03/09/social-media-meets-tv/
http://www.technologyreview.com/communications/25084/

LAIKA – Dynamic Font

5 May

 LAIKA - Dynamic Font

 LAIKA - Dynamic Font

LAIKA is an Ikea-sounding, interactive art project that attempts to create a font that reacts to it’s surroundings. LAIKA can seamlessly use the whole spectrum of its cuts. A font that is able to move between its extremes in real time. An interactive font that is able to respond to its surroundings. A font that questions deadlocked dogmas and throws up completely new design questions, and thus has the potential to revolutionize the understanding of digital typography.

LAIKA from Michael Flückiger on Vimeo.

From the site:
LAIKA requires a whole new, dynamic understanding of typography. Why should a typeface be rigidly set, if it is not going to be printed? In a dynamic medium, why shouldn’t the form and the character of the typeface be understood dynamically as well? Why shouldn’t its forms change, transform, and respond to circumstances?

Obviously this isn’t of much practical use, but it is an interesting concept – that type and information can be aware of its context and adjust itself accordingly. Pretty neat. Check out the full site here:

http://laikafont.ch/About_eng.html

Drankenstein

28 Apr

Bird Peterson's Drankenstein

Bird Peterson and MAD DECENT have teamed up for a trance/southern rap infused project called DRANKENSTEIN.

Bird Peterson describes this as an idea I started working with when I created the Dope Boys remix for Diplo’s recent Guccimane mix. This is my amalgamation of two trends I’ve always loved: the dirty south and the use of trance synths in current rap. Here I have taken 15 or so of my favorite southern rap songs and 15 or so of my favorite trance synth lines to create something thats not corny or funny, it’s simply the motherfudgin’ jam!

 Bird Peterson's Drankenstein

You can download it here

My Trip to the Antarctic Peninsula

13 Apr

Antarctica Peninsula 2010

Late last February I boarded a plane at JFK airport headed for South America. It was the 2nd time I had done so in the past month with the same intention. I was 22 when I graduated college and to reward myself I used up a large portion of my savings to take a trip to Australia. For 2 months my brother and I backpacked up and down the east coast of Oz. It was one of the best experiences pf my life and solidified my love for travel. When I got back from that trip I was determined to travel around the world and step foot on all 7 continents.

Antarctica Peninsula 2010

This last trip of mine was one of the most memorable and difficult. After months of diligently squirreling away money, running around town for equipment making arrangements with airlines, travel agents and insurance companies, I was finally ready to go. I was to fly from New York City to Atlanta, then to Buenos Aires, Argentina then to Ushuaia, Argentina where I would then board a retro-fitted Danish Research Vessel and sail for 2-3 days until we reached the Antarctic continent.

Then a rain-storm hit and my plane never even left the NYC airport. The next day the boat in Ushuaia departed and I was still a hemisphere away.

I was crestfallen and going back to work the next day, after gloating to all of my coworkers, was mildly embarrassing to say the least. One month later, after hours spent on the phone and lots and lots of faxes, I was back on a plane with ticket in hand and renewed determination.

This time around the travel went off without a hitch. I stretched out my travel time so I actually got to spend some time in each city I went to; I got to tango in Buenos Aires and dine on parilla in Ushuaia. After about 4 days of on and off traveling it was time to board the ship, a 1976 retrofitted Danish Research vessel The Plancius. For two days we sailed through the notoriously rough Drake Passage until we reached the first islands of the Antarctic Peninsula.

Antarctica Peninsula 2010

Antarctica Peninsula 2010

There were 3 different groups of staff onboard the ship. There was the hotel staff, the great folks who were in charge of turning down our rooms, serving the meals and the very important position of manning the ship’s fully stocked bar.

Then there was the ship crew, career Russian sailors who didn’t speak a word of English. They spend half of the year sailing around the Antarctica and the other half around the Arctic Circle, they also all looked like they were extras in Eastern Promises. They were exceptionally friendly and after sharing a bottle of vodka I smuggled onboard, I believe I made some lifelong friends.

The last group, the expedition crew, were a team of scientists and doctors who would lead our trips ashore and point out things of interest. They also filled up the time during our lackluster days of sailing by giving collegiate level lectures about what we were about to see. They gave these lectures all while we were aboard a ship that was tilting 45 degrees in some of the roughest waters in the world, with many of us drinking wine and wearing prescription-strength seasickness patches.

Antarctica Peninsula 2010

For the next six days we sailed around different islands and harbours, making landings twice per day. We saw current and abandoned scientific research stations, penguin colonies and arctic seals. We camped out under the stairs (inside 3 different sleeping bags placed ontop of an air mattress), went bum sledding, built a snowman and some of us reluctantly took a dip in the water. The places we were going were so remote that the wildlife was unaccustomed to humans. Curious penguins would walk right up to you and poke around your boots, young seals would swim right up to to Zodiac boats and sniff around and flocks of birds would just fly about – following us around. They were as interested in us as we were in them.

Antarctica Peninsula 2010

This trip was by far one of the most impactful I’ve ever taken. Every time we landed ashore I was be taken aback by the grandiose and unforgiving terrain, I would also be hit by the revelation that only a small percentage of Earth’s population would ever experience what I was feeling. It’s hard to put into words what I felt, so it has been difficult for me to describe my experience to others. I mostly belittle the experience by saying that it was very cold and that I saw lots of ice, penguins and seals. I’m extremely glad that I went and it was worth all of the money and stress I went through to get there. It seems like a more substantial achievement because it did not go as planned. However, I’m not sure if it is a trip I would recommend to others. I went because it was part of a greater goal of mine. Antarctica is not relaxing or nice – two qualities that usually define a vacation. But I wouldn’t trade my experience for anything.

The best as I can offer is to tell you to look at the photos I took, in full resolution, and imagine that it is very, very cold while doing so.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/johnnyjuice/sets/72157623834818912/

Facebook is the new Xbox?

30 Mar

GDC 2010

Although I didn’t get to attend this year’s Game Developer Conference in San Francisco my coworker (thank you Zander!) went and brought back lots of great stories and notes. After trying to play catch-up as best of could via twitter and blog posts, it seems that I missed a pretty relevant and exciting conference.

In particular, I’ve been reading follow-ups to Kristian Segerstrale’s (Playfish) keynote, The Relentless March Towards Free…and What it Means to the Games Industry.

In the past two years Playfish has released 12 games, two of which have a bigger reach than World of War-craft. He talks about the switch from products to services. There is a transition from the old way of making games to the new way of making games. It used to be that games had to be written to a DVD, put in a box and then on a shelf. Once it is written to a DVD, it’s written in stone – the game is finished being developed.

Products now are no longer physical, but now products are digital. The minute a product is fully digital then one is able to change it instantaneously. This also means that the game is never “finished” and is in perpetual beta.

Kristian Segerstrale

Along with this switch from product to service, Sergerstrale discusses how in the future “social gaming” will just become “gaming”. He states that the problem currently with Xbox is that it limits the types of friends a user can have access to. Because of the barrier to entry, the only friends you see online on Xbox are your friends who own Xbox. What Facebook does well is allows users to interact with their friends inside and outside the game at the same time.

It’s now important to think about how to create interest and excitement outside the game in order to drive actions back towards the game. With approximately 1.8 billion users (and growing) on the internet, the barrier to entry for Xbox and the barrier to entry for computer based games becomes very apparent.

The idea of extending gameplay from outside the console – to desktop, smartphones and other devices is something that is inevitable. Gamemakers, like any other industry, need to go to where the users are in order to be successful. As content consumption habits change the content delivery channels must change as well.

Overall it seems like I missed a great talk and a great conference. Hope to make it next time around!

DJ Rha Ruckus

24 Mar

DJ Rha Ruckus (@rharuckus) is a DJ I met a few years ago when I was spinning at La Linea lounge on Thursday nights w/ Todd Jones (@saytj1). The format we had was pretty open, where anyone we knew who wanted some time behind the decks was welcome to it. We had about 3-5 DJs who would come in every night and play around until they got bored or the next person wanted to hop on.

The attendance would vary, but it was a small place so mostly anyone there was a friend of one of the DJs. That made for a fun, party atmosphere. At that time La Linea was pretty much exclusively a hip-hop only crowd and I remember Rha Ruckus would be the only one of us who would try to play house records.

I ran into him again recently and he told me about some of the new mixes & remixes he has been doing. In particular I really like this Electro House mix he did:

You can download it here and the track list is listed on there as well.

Eventually the night we had proved not to be economically advantageous to the bar owners and they deaded it. Rha Ruckus went on to become the resident Friday night DJ there while Todd took Saturdays. Nowadays you can still catch some or all of us at The Skinny Bar on Thursdays doing pretty much the same thing.