29 July 2009

Shake Weight? WTF.

Today's Big Thing is the Shake Weight, a weight specifically designed for women who want to tone their upper arms for tank top season. I don't think I even need to comment on this product's similarity to a sex toy. Watch the video here: shakeweight.org.

28 July 2009

Blue Dye Found in M&Ms Heals Spine

Here's an interesting CNN article I stumbled upon today. Researchers have found that the same blue dye used in M&Ms and Gatorade can heal and even protect spinal cord injuries. When tested on mice, the only side effect was the subject temporarily turning blue. Now, considering I'm scheduled for an MRI on Monday morning for what I believe is a herniated disc, I'm thinking I might need to make a stop at Walgreens on the way home. You can read the article here: Same blue dye in M&Ms linked to reducing spine injury

26 July 2009

My First VLOG

This is my first attempt at editing. It's really not very entertaining, but I feel pretty comfortable with iMovie now. Unfortunately, it's low quality. I'll have to figure out what to do about that.

25 July 2009

Rhonda Forever


This is a pretty cool video demonstration Rhonda Forever, a 3D Drawing software developed by Amir Pitaru in 2003.

Amir PitaruPitaru is a classically trained musician but makes really badass digital art with his own custom programs. The coolest part is, he has no formal computer programming training; he's completely self-taught. The Design Museum website says he strives to create interactive animations with the same fluency as music, which is pretty obvious once you take a look at his stuff. This one is call "Geisha", also made with another custom software. You can check out more of his work at pitaru.com.

James PatersonThe hands & drawings in the video belong to James Paterson (no, not the guy that writes those paperback novels my mom reads), another self-taught software geek. So the interwebz say, the two of them met at a conference in London, then realizing they lived on the same street in Brooklyn, and started collaborating. His stuff is a little more my taste than Pitaru's; kindof purposely rough figural line drawings. He likes to use the computer "like a sketchbook". He's has a few creative outlets on the web but I like halfempty.com/james most.

BONUS: If you visit the site, there is a field at the bottom of the page to sign up to be a tester. They'll e-mail you a password to download the prototype to play around with. I already got mine!

Britain's Last WWII Soldier Passes

MSNBC.com: Harry Patch, Britain’s last WWI soldier, dies

This article brings something up that I've been thinking about a lot recently: the differences between our generation and the ones before us. Maybe it was the ironically intelligent observation I read on that awful textsfromlastnight.com site that said "Our generation is good at dating, we're good at hooking up" or the fact that I left Fight Club playing in my bedroom on repeat for a few hours too long, but it's been on my mind. The generations before us, that of our parents, grandparents, and great grandparents, harvested a crop of people that were all individually shaped by some huge tragedy or hardship. It seems they are all much tougher, have much stronger convictions, and were much more aware of themselves at a much younger age. It may be cheesy, but a line from the aforementioned Fight Club marathon always sticks out to me when I hear it, no matter how distracted I am with laundry folding: "We're the middle children of history, man. No purpose or place. We have no Great War. No Great Depression. Our Great War's a spiritual war... our Great Depression is our lives." Great tragedy toughens your skin, it prioritizes your life, and reaffirms the things you take for granted. There are thousands of U.S. soldiers, some even younger than me, overseas right now who have all realized what all of their granddads that fought in Vietnam and WWII were talking about. So what about the rest of us? Will the 9-11/bin Laden/Iraqi conflict shape us? Will we be able to relate to our grandfathers? Or are we, as a society, now too displaced from it or anything like it for it to affect us personally? No one alive today saw the Civil War or the Revolutionary War. None of us saw it, or had family members die in it, or lost a limb or a home or a brother to it. We all know the textbook facts, but unless you were able to speak to someone who was there, and see its effects in their face, it's nearly impossible to grasp how important it was. I'd like to think that this is an observation on the way humans translate hardship, rather than a reflection of my own methods: that the human aspect is what drives a point home. The survivors of World War II are nearly all dead now. Imagine, the babies being born right now will think of these milestones in our grandparents lives the way we, today, think of the Civil War; something distant and displaced into text books.

I have a feeling I'll be writing more about this general topic in the near future.

24 July 2009

Tim Burton's Alice In Wonderland trailer

Even with all of the damage Hot Topic and mallrats did to the icons of his movies, I still cannot help but love Tim Burton's stuff. It's predictable at times, but I think he's got the right duo in Johhny Depp & Helena Bonham Carter, who, by the way, is going to be the perfect Queen of Hearts. >>

This movie is going to be worth the horrifically inflated ticket price of $9.50. Unfortunately, it doesn't come out until March 2010.

Dream #48029

Last night, I had another installment in my latest series of really fucking weird conspiracy theory spy-movie dreams. Things are already getting hazy, but I know for a fact that I and Jin from LOST were partners in something. I feel like in the beginning we were employees of a catering service at a really large wedding. I'm at a party, and my snake tank is there. I notice there is a mouse in the tank, and I see Fido snap, kill, & eat it, so I get others attention to watch him eat the next one. Then I realize there are at least thirty mice in his tank, all slightly grey and small, and then I finaly see a dark grey and white mouse. However, while I'm distracted with the insanely quick reproductive rate of these mice, everyone is cheering on Snakey. He lunges at a mouse, but instead bites a huge centipede. I immediately begin to freak out, demanding that guests of the party use their phones to look up this particular type of centipede and if it's poisonous. I take Snakey with the centipeded in his mouth with Jin up to the roof. These tiny stickers like gumballs float from somewhere and land on Jin's neck, to which he yanks one off, looks at it, says "Oh, not again" and promptly passes out. I look at Snakey, and the centipede jumps from his mouth at my neck, and I pass out. I wake up and Snakey has been decapitated. The stickers drove Jin mad, and he bit his head off. His body has also been flayed. I am horrified, and the rest of the dream is spent trying to tell people what happened to my pet, but no one really cares enough to listen to the whole story.