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This post shall not pass unnoticed

By on Mar 5, 2010 in Reviews | 0 comments

I don’t know whether you have seen this really innovative music video recently, of OK Go’s This Too Shall Pass, but you should. Nay, must. Haven’t heard of OK Go before? They were the behind that insane treadmill song video (weight-reducing equipment sold separately). Wasn’t that awesome?! You know this type of setup, don’t you? Must have seen it in countless cartoons – especially old Hanna-Barbera studio toons. That sort of setup, with incredibly complex interactions is called a Rube Goldberg machine. I’ve heard on some places that it’s the world’s largest Rube Goldberg machine attempted so far, but even if it isn’t this has got to be the most awesome so far. I guess OK Go officially displaces Honda’s Rube Goldberg machine ad as the best attempt at this sort of thing so far! In a sense, the Internet has pioneered and empowered creative people to come up with videos like these. Previously when distribution channels were limited you’d need to make videos really short (for TV commercials, since companies often pay by the second) or at least substantially long enough to be marketed as a DVD. The Internet has a filled a void between the two which allows execution of ideas longer than a short TV commercial, and yet be short enough to capture our attention span. On that note, also have a look at this commercial… …and this ‘lip-dub’ video. The Internet might have given a rise to banal videos of cats doing nothing, but it has also enabled a new generation of creative videomakers to reach out to millions. PS – To all students back in India attempting their Board exams, I wish you luck! Now that you’ve enjoyed an entertaining break, do get back to studies. Related articles by Zemanta Behind the scenes of OK Go’s Rube Goldberg video at Ignite Los Angeles (makezine.com) How OK Go Built the Craziest Rube Goldberg Machine Yet [Music] (gizmodo.com) OK Go’s Duelling Videos...

What a retarded ad, sirji!

By on Feb 15, 2010 in Uncategorized | 22 comments

Idea Cellular has been a wannabe cellular network provider for a long time in India. They are perennially the ones lagging far behind in the market share race and for good reason – every Idea mobile subscriber will tell you tales how they don’t get any reception unless they stick their head out of a window at a particular angle when taking phone calls. The sensible thing to do would have been to invest in more mobile towers – real, tangible stuff that would make a difference. Instead, Idea Cellular went for a strategy Microsoft has adopted for years (before Windows 7 happened) – sink lots of money into retarded advertising campaigns. Over the past few years, using Idea Cellular mobile phones has solved various challenging problems such as illiteracy, caste riots, and obesity. Emboldened by having tackled such grave issues, Idea has now moved on to saving trees, I hear. They have a new campaign called Use Mobile. Save Paper. Notice something there? Many of the people trying to save trees are doing so by shifting their reading to iPhones! This is a classic case of the left hand not knowing the fact that the right hand is currently busy jacking off. Somebody forgot to tell Lowe Lintas (the agency which created this ad campaign) that Idea doesn’t sell the iPhone on their network. I’m not sure whether Lowe Lintas was the agency behind the other commercials, but it seems that their creative team is permanently high from smelling their own farts. Unless, what they actually wanted to say was “Want to save trees? Why sure, just go and buy a highly overpriced device from two of our biggest competitors!” One of these days, they’ll come out with a commercial saying something along the lines of ‘using Idea Cellular solves the AIDS problem’. The Nobel committee will then say “What an idea, sirji” and give Abhishek Bachchan a Nobel Peace Prize for being a fucking saint and solving every social issue possible using mobile phones. Related articles by Zemanta Did this Metro PCS ad make the tech world cringe?...

…and now, MAD TV is going mad

By on Feb 6, 2010 in Personal | 5 comments

Excited about MAD TV Madness Week, which happening next week from 8-14th February. It’ll be a lot of work, but it sure as hell will be a lot of fun putting it all together too. I came up with two different print ads for the event. This first one has been published in the latest edition of The Stag too. It features guinea pirates. Basically, they’re pirates but at the same time they’re also guinea pigs. I also made a second ad, which didn’t get approved/published. This one features eyes from Texas Chainsaw Massacre and critical praise from The Washington Toast. Apparently, this second ad was judged to be too scary for release because of the disembodied eyes. ;) And yet, after doing all this, I still didn’t truly feel that I was part of the Internets generation. This feeling has been gnawing away at me for quite some time. I had epiphany recently. No, it wasn’t “Bananas are an excellent source of potassium. [slap]”, nor did it have anything to do with the Boob Lady. – REDACTED – Oh, did I hear you say “What is MAD TV Madness Week?!”. I guess you’ll just have to tune in to www.madtvsurrey.co.uk to find out. In case you haven’t read it already, you might also be interested in my previous blog post Has MAD TV Gone Insane? PS – After discussions revolving around various university and students’ union policies, some content posted here earlier has been taken...

Five Years of Rediscovering The Web

By on Nov 12, 2009 in Tech Takes | 3 comments

It’s been five years since Firefox was launched. To commemorate this occasion, Mozilla has released a video on Firefox’s journey over the past five years. It’s an animated advertisement…and it looks simply beautiful, and the soundtrack is pretty groovy too. We all know about Firefox of course, so I’m sharing this not to tell you about Firefox, but to simply admire such a well-created video. Watch the Five Years of Firefox video Firefox really shook up the world in more ways than one. It presented the first real threat to Internet Explorer since Netscape Navigator’s demise. In a way, it paved the way for interactive web services and apps that we are so fond of these days; by attempting to stick to standards, it even forced Microsoft to slowly come to terms that it must follow standards to stay in the race. Even with far more choice now – with Safari, Opera, Chrome – among others, Firefox started and still leads the charge of IE alternatives. What do I like most about it? Customizability, of course. Keep rediscovering the...

‘New and improved’

By on Sep 14, 2009 in Tech Takes | 8 comments

I went to the optician today to get my eyes checked. Yes, I prefer an automated refractometer (or whatever that thingymajig is called) test done rather than stumble blindly around for one whole day because of those dilatory eyedrops given by ophthalmologists when testing. I got that done only once – when I first got spectacles – and then never again. I’ve been using Essilor‘s Crizal lenses for quite some time now. Nah, I wasn’t swayed by images of people giving Colgate smiles after wearing those. What I did find interesting was that my optician said that the lenses are ‘scratch-free, dust-free’ and whole bunch of other ‘frees’ (except for the price-tag, which is nowhere near free). But hey, it works. I was happy with is since it really is what all they said. New and improved is an oxymoronic term (if it’s ‘new’, it can’t have been ‘improved’; if its ‘improved’ then it can’t be ‘new’) often abused by the likes of Cadbury Bournvita marketing executives. So when today I need to choose new lenses (power increased by .5 dioptres), I was very curious when the optician told me that now they had the new and improved Crizal A2 lenses. Now since Crizal lenses are already (supposedly) ‘scratch-free, dust-free’, what more am I to expect from my Crizal A2 lenses which I ordered? Probably a laser tracking system that shoots down dust particles mid-air. Or maybe the previous one was merely scratch-free, while this one can be used to cut upon bank vaults. Crizal’s India site gives a few clues. If I don’t ge X-ray vision enhancement (I assume that’s what it means) with these new lenses instead of just vision correction, I’m taking them to court. :D I’ll slip in something sideways here. I went to the British Council library yesterday to return some books. I was browsing through the shelves to find something new to issue, when I came across this: Steve Jobs will probably have a heart attack if he comes across this book. If you need a fricking manual, scratch that, a fricking for Dummies book to operate an iPod / iTunes then it’s a probably a good indication that either technology is way too complex or that the preson reading the book is from Jajau. Lest you accuse me of Photoshopping the image, check out iPod & iTunes for Dummies at Amazon.com Speaking of spectacle lenses, it isn’t as if I’ve not tried to switch to contact lenses. Bausch & Lomb allows you to try on their contacts, so I gave it a shot once. A sales assistant is assigned to help you put on the contacts for the first time. Try all I might I just can’t keep my eyes open when the contacts come close to my eye. The sales assistant tried many many times, but each time my eyes started blinking so rapidly that the contacts couldn’t even come close. Half an hour or so later, one sales assistant was trying to hold down my upper eyelid open, a second one was trying to keep my lower eyelid open, while yet another tried to put the contacts on – and failed miserably. I found out that day my eyelid muscles were stronger than hand muscles of grown men and women. Seems like I won’t be wearing contacts without a whole entourage of people to hold open my eyelids. PS – One of the artsy-fartsy types found out what a Mission Impossible 3 type start is called; the term I was referring to is ‘in media...