Friday Videos - Feb 12th, 2016

Some weeks are easier to compile than others. This one was a bit on the tougher side and, thus, some of the results maybe a bit more varied and odd. I think you'll still feel quite distracted from your weekly duties tho.

This genius combined Star Trek withe SnapChat filters and the results are wonderful. If I could embed it below, I would.

Enjoy this thug life, taken from here but, trust me, it's much better as a silent video than it is as a chip advertisement.
  • Top 25 Plastic Chairs - Bryan Ropar counts down his favorites. If you want more, dive in way further. Via John.
  • The Washer Dryer Club - collectors of washer dryers get together and wash clothes. This feels like a cut scene from an unknown Christopher Guest movie but would CBS Sunday Morning lie to us? I don't think so. Also via John. No judgements tho, I collect and enjoy plenty of weird things myself.
  • Stations - a wonderful short film that depicts the Subway experience in short, 2-3 second clips. I could watch something like this for hours.
  • Beyonce Tour Announcement - plenty of talk of Beyonce recently but take a moment to just appreciate this video for the art direction of it. Sure there's plenty of random nouns being depicted (hawk, crashing waves, molotov cocktail) but it works and it looks beautiful.
  • Arcade Fire - David Bowie Tribute - everyone's favorite indie outfit took to the streets of New Orleans to partner up with the Preservation Hall Jazz Band to pay tribute to Mr. Bowie. Honestly, I think the results are a little lackluster but it's something you should see regardless.
  • OK Go - Upside Down and Inside Out - I really could care less about any OK Go song but I can't hate on the amount of work that must go into making these videos. I'm more curious to see the Making Of, as this is an awful lot of orchestrated, choreographed zero G movement.
Spend some time with @femscriptintros this weekend too and realize that writing women characters still has a long long way to go. Vaguely related, watch this Funny or Die Art of the Steal trailer in which Johnny Depp depicts an all too accurate Donald Trump. Then read this article and contemplate all weekend how terrifying it would be to have him running things.

But to end on a high note, enjoy this.

Cymbal

I was a fairly regular user of This Is My Jam, the music sharing site restricted to one song per week. It did a good job of making sharing and discovery easy - music curation from actual people you know but not in an overwhelming manner. However, it is gone.

Enter Cymbal - a recently launched app that seems to achieve similar goals. Unlike the content on Instagram, Facebook or Twitter, the act of enjoying a song is not the same - it takes way way longer - so I'm curious how this will work as an app experience rather than a web experience that I can partake in passively. Only one way to find out - add me on Cymbal.

Facer

While I do not personally have an Android watch, I find this Facer store to be a nice proof of concept for why anyone would want to put on "wearables." Being able to swap out your watch face for a classy analog face or some quality Garfield is a nice bit of diversity. I'm sure this is news to no one that this is possible, it's nice to see it executed in such a nice way.

Figma

I am hesitantly optimistic about Figma, a new collaborative design tool coming out in 2016. The intro video looks quite promising - allowing for team members from all over to work on designs in real time, online. Boldly, it seems that they're going for the Sketch + Zeplin crowd.

On the whole, I think I'd rather see this as an integration with Sketch rather than a whole new toolset. There's already a thriving Sketch community and this may just serve to bifurcate it. I'm also a little bearish on any online tool being able to handle bitmap assets in a streamlined way.

But those are judgements being cast before I've ever even used the tool. So I'll withhold them and wait for the release. I'm definitely intrigued.

Mystery Twins - Now & Then

I love Mystery Twins in part for their explosive style of garage rock and howling vocals but they occasionally come out swinging with something a bit softer that packs just as much punch. This live, two-minute, performance of Now & Then is beautifully shot and just the right amount of `haunting` in the vocal performance.

City World

I'm intrigued by the trailer for City World. It's a quiet affair but there's something foreboding and apocalyptic about it that calls to me. Aesthetically, it feels influenced by the likes of Terrence Malick or early David Gordon Green - very natural and slow-paced but giving you enough time to pore over the shots.

NASA + Invisible Creature

I've previously posted about Al Paulsen, the illustrator responsible for the imagery emblazoned on the Golden Record currently hurdling through space. I also made note that Paulsen is the grandfather of the amazing talented Invisible Creature, two designers who have more than established their talent in their own right.

With that in mind, these NASA Commissioned Posters from the duo are just that much more enjoyable. Not only are they wonderful to inspect but they're part of a continued lineage of Space Illustrators. Not too many people can say that.

Square Dogs

Often a leap of faith is required to fully, immersively, enjoy things you find on the Internet. This Reddit thread points to a Taiwanese "trend" of grooming dogs into square, spherical and other shapes. It's downright adorable. It's also probably not a trend but a handful of people participating in a small number of fun things. Regardless of the popularity of it, there are a number of galleries worth browsing.

I gotta agree with this guy tho, I hope eyebrow dogs takes off soon.

PARC Movies

If you recall your computer history properly, Xerox PARC was the source of modern computing. Sure, many came before them and many after but the idea of a GUI, a mouse and a window'ed environment is largely attributed to them. But have you ever seen it? I'd only seen glimpses and clips.

So, encountering this 25-minute PARC demo is pretty fascinating. At first glance it seems like a fairly rudimentary batch of mouse usage and clicking on text. However it's not far off from what we're doing now, 30+ years after its inception. Oh, and as a total bonus, it's got some great glitch and weathering to the video, so you could watch it purely for that.

Friend Inspirado

Two of my friends recently relaunched their Internet Homes and I felt completely moved and inspired by them both in different ways. Please take some time to read what these folks have to say and putting them in your regular rotation.
  • Jed Sundwall - his introduction to the new home is great but the entry I, Sensor really grabbed me. Jed is honest, open and reflectively appreciative of his life in a way I find completely admirable. He's also got an eloquence to his insights that create a total PEVZ.
  • Robbie Player - a tireless worker, amazing champion for his hometown (Charlotte) and passionate music advocate have always set Robbie in an admirable place for me. His resuscitation post is great insight into why it's important to have your own home on the web, not just contributing to the pile of existing services.
These two are regular visits in my web visitation schedule as it's always good to hear what they have to say. Hopefully I can even take it a little further and finally motivate myself to finish the renovations around here.

Ciao Since78

For the past four years, Since78 has been a reliable home to many great mixes. He recently announced that he's shuttering the project for new things. I can't fault him for such a thing and look forward to his imminent forthcoming podcast. In the meantime, I'm going to grab as many mixes as I can and store them away for future enjoyment.

Also recommended, follow creator Brian Gossett on Twitter and Soundcloud.

Friday Videos - Feb 5th, 2016

I won't put it into this week's collection but if you haven't dipped your toe into the Nightblonde teaser, please do so now. I'm quite excited for what they've got brewing.

Aside from that, dive in! Enjoy! For more, enjoy this amazing display, Donald Trumpet and this vampire cat.

Craft By Invision Labs

Designing with dummy data is a long standing problem that just about any designer has faced. Lorem Ipsum has roots back to the 1500's! So, it's great that Invision has tackled the problem and released CRAFT, a series of Photoshop or Sketch plugins that put live data in reach with much less effort. Pulling in type, images and duplicating data is all tackled within the suite of tools.

Their presentation is slick and convincing. I'm looking forward to diving in and, hopefully, taking it even one step further and populating with actual client data when appropriate.

HT Mr. Daniel Box.

Album Colors Of The Year, 2015

I never tire of browsing through album art - it's such a perfect self-contained bit of varietal art and design. So, browsing through the 2015 Album Colors of the Year was a real treat. Make sure you read that twice, it's Album Colors, not Album Covers. There's a very clever gradienting of palettes as you scroll the page, with two rainbow based outliers at the end.

Thanks to Jason for the heads up.

Carolina Camera

Many thanks to Andrew for directing me to Carolina Camera, a collection of 1980's and 90's news reports focusing on characters from the South. I tend to stray from these kinds of things as I worry that they are mocking the subjects but that's not the case here, they're simply reporting on the subjects.

I've barely scratched the surface of videos offered here but I think Return of the Doo Doo Man is as good a place as any on where to start. Enjoy!

We Own This Town: Volume 74

Fun fact, the release of Volume 74 of the podcast coincides with the day of my birth. This is my gift to you. Okay, that's ridiculous. It's actually 30+ minutes of Nashville musicians collective gifts to you because it wouldn't exist without them. The following is culled from very recent releases or slightly upcoming releases.
Nashville has been changing at a rapid pace over the last few years and many residents, understandably, don't like the way it's shaping up. Fortunately, there's still a bright spot in that murkiness, which is all this great music.

Download Podcast, Stream It or Subscribe.
  1. Daddy Issues - Drop Out
  2. Butthole - She Boop She Boo Thang
  3. The By Gods - The Stairs
  4. Anchor Thieves - Isn't Anything
  5. Dave Paulson - Beep Bop Beep
  6. Brooke Waggoner - Ovenbird
  7. Lionlimb - Domino
  8. The Nobility - On the Sly
  9. UZi - Uh Huh
  10. Goth Babe - Bummed Out
Continue Reading...

Taken By Storm

The late Storm Thorgeson (and his studio Hipgnosis) had an unbelievable influence to just about anyone with eyeballs that likes music. Everyone knows his work in some form or another (see here or here if you need a refresher) and it's nice to see that there's a proper documentary retrospective on him. Taken By Storm looks to be a straightforward look at his history with great anecdotes about specific covers direct from the artists.

There are a number of options - including special features that go into the making of particular album covers.

Super Phantom Cat

When it comes to gaming, I'm a simple man. So, when I caught wind of straight-forward platformer Super Phantom Cat from Kory, I knew I would be pleased. I don't love traditional NES style controls via the touch interface but they've done a good job of making it responsive and forgiving, two essentials with a game like this. It's cute, it's pixel-y and, thus far, has proved to be rewarding without being frustratingly challenging.

Get it or simply watch the trailer.

Space Cop

For those that enjoy the low budget absurdity along the lines of WolfCop, may I introduce to you Space Cop. This summary should do it for ya:
Space Cop is the story of a cop from the future of space who travels back in time to the present and is teamed up with a cop from the past who is unfrozen in the present. Together, they must defeat evil aliens with a sinister plan.
The effects are just the right level of poorly done and the acting / script is just self-aware enough to be entertaining. I'm not saying it's a perfect movie but I'm saying that trailer is worth a watch. There's a movie only version and a Deluxe Edition that includes a VHS-ified version of the film. I think you know what to do.

UNSCII

I was extremely happy to stumble upon the UNSCII bitmap font recently. Why, you may ask? Because it combines the drawing sprites from a variety of old systems - AMIGA, Atari, Commodore-64, BBC Micro, etc - all into one very modern, usable font. I realize very few people are excited by the propsect of having a shading block somewhere between ░ and ▒ - but I count myself among them.