Thursday, 29 July 2010

Choice Interactive Web Toys of Andre Michelle


Andre Michelle's AM Laboratory has developed a number of cool musical toys and special effects to explore.  Play with and create some calmly pulsating circles within circles, simply by  following her navigation commands on each link you try.

"Click to create at least two circles.  Listen to the tunes they make.  Press Space to clear them all."

Here is a collection of her studies she extracted while developing her commercial projects or just by researching new technologies."

The SuperEllipse is a 3D Sound-visualizer based on research by Paul Bourke accompanied by the cool chill music by Alva Noto & Opiate.

Or try my favorite The Color Traces web toy.

Wednesday, 28 July 2010

Catception: Dramatic Cat inspired by Inception

This fun video stars Bret, the super pet  and was shot with an iPhone 4 and a LED light, (creating the spooky glowing eyes effect). The music track was appropriated from the soundtrack of Inception and is 528491 by Hans Zimmer.



And while your at it I'm guessing you may like to see a short movie trailer of Inception.

Tuesday, 27 July 2010

BARTHOC: The Curious Robot


A large proportion of robots that have so far been developed, function either from a preprogramed, programed sets of instructions or sets of continuing commands. This means that only a relatively small number of robots in the world at large, are in the process of being engineered to actually learn the ability to communicate with humans.

The Curious Robot, (named BARTHOC), seen in the video below is one such machine intelligence or anthropomorphic robot currently being developed by scientists from Bielefeld University, Germany. According to the researchers, they are focused on;

"bimanual action, representation and execution, tactile sensors and manipulation based on tactile feedback, online-learning object detection, integration and coordination of perception and action and principles of human-robot dialog, including non-verbal communication, combination of exploratory and guided learning."



What we learn in the video is how the researchers are gifting the robot with  a little spice or trickery of human communication, in the light of the chap lying to the robot in order for it to perhaps realise how it might be fooled into believing an apple is a banana.

Monday, 26 July 2010

Man builds his own island home in Mexico


A carpenter has created his own ecologically sound island from discarded plastic bottles, which is situated about 50 ft off the shore in a bay in Puerto Aventuras, Mexico. Evident in the documentary styled video seen below, the carpenter's diy island home is basically a food producing self-sufficient house boat, with alarming charm.

Since Americans use 2.5 million plastic bottles every hour you've got to wonder how many more industrious individuals might decide to build their own island !

Alternatively others could try to imitate David de Rothschild's adventurous plastic bottle yacht, Plastiki, which coincidently, as reported here, made land fall today.

"After sailing more than 8,000 nautical miles and spending 128 days crossing the Pacific, the world’s largest ocean, in a boat made of 12,500 plastic PET bottles, the Plastiki expedition and her crew have safely and successfully reached their planned destination of Sydney to cheers of welcome and support."

Saturday, 24 July 2010

3D TV: Motion Parallax Auto-stereoscopic

Recent releases of 3D movies like Avatar and Alice in Wonderland for both the movie theater and the home requires the user wear special optical glasses.

With a technology as old as 1908, technology researchers at NHK Integral have developed an experimental real-time system that uses an extremely high resolution video system, to create a 3D television system in which viewers need not wear special viewing glasses.



The video here gives us a glimpse of what may one day be a commonplace home and movie theater 3D TV experience, with one outstanding imperfection in the system. As the video states, this screen uses an 8K projector to create an image of only 400 by 250 pixels. This means that there are almost 280 2D pixels used to create one 3D pixel. Thus we ought not expect any opportunity to be pick up a set like this any time soon !

Friday, 23 July 2010

Tablets for the masses: the Indian $35 Tablet



IT engineers from Bangalore's IISc and four IITs have come up with a laptop at the cost of mere 35 dollars. The engineer says in the news video that by the time the device is released the product will be available for the mass market for under $20.

The display or tablet has a touch-screen, 2gig RAM, wifi connectivity and USB ports. Phew, when this nifty device arrives, I guess we can expect prices of most other tablets dropping ? Perhaps even the iPad ?

Thursday, 22 July 2010

Lagoa Multiphysics, clever generative computer graphics engine

was developed by Thiago Costa, a Brazilian programmer, visual fx artist, and animator. In the video below he demos the capabilities of the new Lagoa Multiphysics 1.0 Engine, using Softimage's ICE platform.

Softimage, is a high-end 3D computer graphics application owned by Autodesk for producing 3D computer graphics, 3D modeling, and computer animation. The software is predominantly used in the film, video game and advertising industries for creating computer generated characters, objects, and environments. Source.



Thiago Costa's video demonstration shows some of the possible fluid dynamics of the engine as well as the overall complexity of the engine and its different capabilities.

Wednesday, 21 July 2010

Laurel and Hardy meet Santana



Here is an entertaining video of Laurel and Hardy dancing to the 1970's Latin rock song Oye Como Va by Santana.

Laurel and Hardy were one of the most popular comedy teams of the early to mid Classical Hollywood era of American cinema. Read more.

Tuesday, 20 July 2010

The Contracting Thermosphere due to Global Warming


Many scientists are puzzled as to why the thermosphere is contracting. The upper most layer of the earths atmosphere begins 80 to 90 kilometers above the surface and extends several hundred kilometers into the sky. This region is occupied by numerous satellites and the International Space Station.

In a recent study of satellite orbital decay (due to light atmospheric drag) found that the contraction during 2008 and 2009 was unusually more severe than expected, leaving researchers at a loss for how to explain it.

Nevertheless the following video/animation clip, from NCAR scientist Stan Solomon offers us his theory as to why the thermosphere is contracting.



"With anthropogenic activities there has been an increase in global carbon emissions. The concentration of CO2 in the thermosphere has therefore increased. When the CO2 atoms are energized in the thermosphere by collisions with other atoms and molecules, their energy is radiated as heat before it can transfer its energy by other means such as another collision. Over time this manifests itself as an overall cooling and contraction of the thermosphere." Source

Monday, 19 July 2010

Jan Vormann Restores Crumbling Walls With Lego Bricks


Instead of plaster or stucco,the German artist Jan Vormann mends cracks,holes and fissures in buildings. Vormann uses a novel but fun approach to repairing broken building facades, and  crumbling architecture.

Vorman calls his street art Dispatchwork, with the emphasis on the patchwork.

According to Wired magazine, Vorman's "approach favored function over appearance, reminding Vormann of the haphazard Lego designs created by children."

Vorman has spent the past 3 years traveling the world repairing crumbling walls building facades and monuments with Lego bricks, and has left his mark on the streets of Amsterdam,St. Petersburg and Tel Aviv,among other places.

Saturday, 17 July 2010

Huh! the Singing Animal Supergroup ?



Starring Lulu the Dramatic Kitty, Mylo the Cat, Cleo the Cat, and Barry the Rapping Dog, sing "Chaser" by Coma featuring Hotrod.

This clever, yet ridiculously entertaining video is by Adam Schleichkorn.








Friday, 16 July 2010

Entertaining iPad game, Spider: Bryce Mansion HD

Originally released for the iPhone in 2007, Spider: Bryce Mansion HD  is an interactive puzzle game where you explore an abandoned mansion as a tiny arachnid, building webs to trap insects, has just been updated to an iPad version.


As the player clinches the insect prey, I became subtly seduced by the overall cuteness of the interface and simple yet site specific sound-designs on each level.

The person playing the game in the video doesn't appear to be the most fastidious or co-ordinated of players yet the game would likely frustrate the best of players at higher levels. Nevertheless, Spider, appears to offer appreciably clever graphics and good entertainment if only harmless timeless value !



Spider: Bryce Manor HD, iPad version ($4.99 @ iTunes store), has an exclusive single device multiplayer game mode called Sidekicks, and whatever that means, is likely to heighten your enthusiasm for it.

Wednesday, 14 July 2010

Green Chemistry and the arrival of a new Bio-based adhesive

Researchers at Oregon State University (OSU) have developed a wood-based hot-melt composite adhesive that doesn't use any organic solvents or toxic chemicals, and is based purely on vegetable oils.

According to CleanTechnica, adhesive tape accounts for a $26 billion global industry. Hence a more sustainable adhesive could help speed up the long, slow fade out of petrochemicals in the production of masking tape, packing tape, duct tape, sticky notes and other tapes in daily use by industry, office workers and residences.

The development of this new glue implies a new approach to finding more sustainable ways in the design of chemical products and processes that reduce or eliminate the use or generation of hazardous substances. This sentiment is born out in the video below by Martyn Poliakoff outlining his thoughts on the development of Green or Sustainable Chemistry. You may be inclined to take notice when he refers to the amount of chemicals used to produce a batch of viagra, before and now!



Coincidently, a team of scientists in Wyoming, have been studying spider web glue from the golden orb weaving spider in the hope to develop a new super tech bio-based glue for a variety of specific scientific purposes.


Nevertheless you may be interested in reading more about the basic principles of green chemistry, here.

Monday, 12 July 2010

A Huge Disco of Flocking Starlings

Millions of starlings perform a kind of site-specific dance, cluster flocking to and fro forming surreal airborne patterns and kaleidoscopic designs, are seen here pouring into Rome from northern europe, revealing an awesome and entertaining aerial display of nature.





Friday, 9 July 2010

Ripping apart and reassembling an iPhone 4 in techie ambience


Do you remember how long ago that it was only repair people who were privy to see what was inside  gadgets and home tech boxes ?

Now its more and more commonplace to be given the opportunity to be shown how the elements in a device are built or fitted into a case or box. And this is cool since we are now no longer kept mystified about what comprises the innards of our gadgets.

Thus we are entertained by a catchy stop motion video, comprised of 1784 hi-res photographs, from a repair shop that has found a creative way to advertise itself. This is, however, no ordinary unboxing and take-apart video, since its set to a custom electronic/glitch soundtrack



Aside from this clever video, some iPhone whinges, including myself, have wondered on seeing the space for the battery and its location, as to why Apple has refrained from having a replacement battery: You to ?

Nevertheless, since your here, you may as well go see how you may be able to pick up a free ipad, from TechRestore.

Wednesday, 7 July 2010

Lostmachinima's Short Film: Retaliation


'War does not determine who is right - only who is left.'

Although, I must confess I am not an action gamer this weirdly entertaining animation rattled my sox. It cleverly juxtaposes Telepopmusik's song, Yesterday Was A Lie with a computer graphics cinematic depth of field effect of excerpts from the Halo 3 game.

Film maker, Lostmachinima used a Blackmagic Intensity Pro HD Capture Card, edited using Sony Vegas 9 Pro using Visuals and Color Correction, Adobe After Effects CS4 and 'Magic Bullet Looks'.

Go here to see more cool work by this clever media artist.

Tuesday, 6 July 2010

Finger painting portrait of Beyonce on an iPad



Here is a cool time lapse video, documenting a digital painting of the performer Beyonce, produced with one finger on an iPad, by UK artist Kyle Lambert, using the Brushes app and 1 finger in 6 hours of work.

Sunday, 4 July 2010

Multitouch Display Aquarium


Water is the most intimate material for human touch. Here we see a man playing with the surface of a large Multitouch Fish Tank at Deutsche Telekom CeBIT 2009. This rather opulent looking aquarium from q-bus enables interactivity with a computer display interface which is facilitated by tracking software through water, with the ability to play with the fish in the tank.

This appears to be an enlivening experience if only a novel one at best. Nevertheless I envisage a big market for these devices in large department stores, opera theatres, fashion conduits and stadium based convention and entertainment  centers.

The software was created by q-bus to run on an Apple Mac OS X platform. Although it may take a little while to properly load, be sure to check out their entertaining, Expanding Sphere video on the opening page of their website.

Friday, 2 July 2010

In Pursuit of Significance: A site-specific dance


occurs in non-traditional performance spaces, like the interior and exterior spaces of buildings, airports and streets wherein a site-specific dance choreographer is inspired by a place and creates a dance based on the site.

Site-specific dance choreographers explore how dance can communicate a site’s historical, political, and social context to an audience; by creating relationships within a specific site. In so doing the choreographer creates an appreciation for
an otherwise empty architectural environment.

Here we see the YAF Dancers choreographed by Patricia Chiu perform an engaging and entertaining site-specific dance in the halls and stairways of Western Market, Hong Kong.

The work was presented by the Hong Kong Youth Arts Foundation and created for the HK Jockey Club Point as part of the Point to Point Site Specific Art Project. I have to admit not knowing anything about the music track or who it's by. Perhaps you may like to inform us by adding comment to this post !

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