Is it worth being a secondary role? Many of us think that these roles are completely necessary for raising a series or TV program up to a first rate show. This is my particular tribute to those people whose short and memorable interventions make our lives more gratifying. An example: Continue reading The importance of being Bob
Play with one or stick two or more cubes together to build an interactive world(…) As you stack, they’ll interact and visit one another’s cubes.
(…) if you interconnect additional Cubees, the one on top of the singing pyramid will belt out the lead while the others “sing” back-up.
Even though the possibilities of interaction between electronic toys has been already explored for a while (like in the most recent versions of the Tamagotchi or the Digimon), it looks as though there’s a new generation of toys on the horizon which are characterized by their ability to interact with each other regardless of the active presence of the user.
These toys generally come shaped as cubes which provide special connectors on several of their sides. Each cube is entertaining by itself, but in order for the interactions to happen, the user should Continue reading Modular behaviours: cube world&cubees
The researchers at this Red Planet station have unwittingly opened a door, and all hell has broken loose. A legion of nightmarish creatures of unknown origin lurks in every corner and stalks the countless rooms and tunnels of the facility, killing what few people remain.
Traditionally a bad thing, Doom has been a reason for expectation and happiness to almost every person that has played computer games since 1993. The Doom series was a hit that popularised the 1st-person shooter genre, and its last installment was no exception, with luscious graphics, chilling sounds and, among everything, an unparalleled atmosphere that literally took you to hell.
With these credentials, and after a myriad of copies sold, it just seemed natural that someone wanted to make a movie based on the game. In fact, Doom, the movie is reasonably close to the game, though it’s not quite it… Continue reading Doom(the movie): Afterthoughts
The Origami Group in Santiago de Compostela is a cheerful community of enthusiasts of paper folding. There’s no “membership”, as no special requirement is needed to join other than curiosity and interest towards learning new figures (and making friends, of course!). Continue reading Beautiful origami earrings
“It’s Christmas time!”. Many of you will remember Jack Skeleton, the main character in a wondrous tale created by Tim Burton and directed by Henry Sellick, “The nightmare before Christmas”. So, you’ll also remember when Jack found the Xmas town, singing the rhythmic and funny “What’s this”, (composed and sung by Danny Elfman), cheering on the new discovery and shouting out loud “It’s Christmas time!”
I’m going to be a Jack’s “alter ego” for a moment, in order to give you some arguments for loving Xmas, not in a usual way, but based on the film that we are reviewing. Continue reading Christmas: A lovely bad dream
The next evolution will be leaner and meaner, with some cool features you might not expect.
Dave Kerr has released an update of aiplanet, the open source dynamic ecosystem simulation. Furthermore, he has also announced that a new version is in the works, one that, in his own words, will be “a radical improvement on the first version”. He is working on a new engine, called AIR, which will add new features and make development much easier. Aiplanet V2 will probably take many months to be released, but it is already very good news to know that new work is being done.
Besides this announcement, it also worths to read the interview that Tom Barbalet, from Biota, made to Dave just a few days ago. The interview gives an excellent overview not only on the underlining principles behind aiplanet, but also on the development process of an amateur project. Continue reading Aiplanet: back on air
The human brain is specialized in finding patterns and shapes; that’s why we recognize the faces of people we know, organize time in regular cycles, and also why it is so difficult to make a convincing seamless loop of ambient sound from a short recording. A side effect of this ability is that we often find patterns where there are not, like when we look at the clouds and see dragons, lambs or synthesizers.
However, while nobody would say that a cloud is actually a dragon, other things are more controversial. Is it really a face what the Viking orbiter photographed over the surface of Mars? I guess that the safe answer is that it looks like a face, though some people have taken the issue much further.
This said, I would like to share two findings that quite surprised me a few days ago. These are satellite images of two spots on Earth, as found in google maps and windows live local. I have asked some people for their opinion, and while some of them stared at the images the same way I did, others didn’t see anything at all, so I won’t bias you (or your imagination) by telling what you’re supposed to find. I´m most impressed about the first one, since the surroundings of the “feature” are very interesting too (I’ll just say that you may find it better by tilting your head to the right).
Here are the links:
http://local.live.com/ (Unfortunately the zoom doesn’t go further, but it is still possible to see the “feature” around the center of the image).
Update: If you don´t see anything, try comparing the images with the ones shown here.
Wenner’s unique and innovative use of anamorphic perspective creates unforgettable images that combine the painted surface with its surroundings into a single composition.
After the interest shown in a former article on Julian Beever’s anamorphic pavement paintings, I decided to complete it with more materials on the topic. Julian’s site included several pictures of his chalk paintings, but I remembered to have seen some more, so I made a little research to see what I could find -and I found myself surprised by the (re)discovery of another great painter and master of the anamorphic technique, Kurt Wenner.
I say rediscovery because in fact I already knew several of his pictures, though I thought they belonged to Julian; actually, besides the fact that they use similar methods, it’s easy to see differences between them. Both of them are figurative, and draw the contours of the shapes they paint. However, if Beever tends to paint contemporary and often quotidian people and objects, Wenner’s imagery is neoclassical, in between Renaissance and Baroque. My favourite paintings of his are those where he works the scenography and composition in order to enhance the pathos, giving the pictures a strength that outperforms that of Beever… yet Julian has got a sense of humour, a “human touch”, which make his paintings great even when the subject is not. In other words: Human people in a picture by Wenner tend to become objects, statues in the picture. But when Beever poses with his creations, he brings them out to the world.
In all, I would say that Beever and Kenner, both great artists, complement each other very well, and I hope that they keep on bringing us many more marvellous paintings. 🙂
Related Article: Julian Beever paints in 3D
a movie by Peter Jackson
With his newly discovered star and coerced screenwriter reluctantly onboard, Denham (…) heads out of New York Harbor… and toward a destiny that none aboard could possibly foresee.
When I knew that Peter Jackson was working on a remake of King Kong, I remember to have doubted that it were a good idea. After the 1933 classic hit the theaters, several versions have been made with more or less fortune, and I wondered if it was too soon for a new one, if there was anything new to show, besides the awesome special effects that the remake would surely bring.
Now that I have seen the movie I wouldn’t say that I was wrong, though I think that it well deserves to be watched and will probably stand out as the most accomplished version to date, only second to the original. Its greatest value is the cast: all the main actors, and many of the supporting ones, have worked their characters as to make them credible, even memorable. Adrien Brody composes his Driscoll with elegance; Naomi Watts shines (literally, indeed), portraying an Ann Barrow as brave as fragile; Carl Denham (reminds me of Orson Welles), shows us the many facets of Jack Black, who would do anything to achieve glory and wealth, always conscious of the results of his actions, often pursued by guilt, never able to admit his defeat.
Then, of course, there’s Kong, which if not the greatest is surely the Continue reading King Kong: Afterthougths
Anamorphic illusions drawn in a special distortion in order to create an impression of 3 dimensions when seen from one particular viewpoint.
Julian Beever is a very special painter. He has mastered the technique of anamorphic painting, which he applies to pavement paintings to render awesome, stunning images that pop out of the floor. Anamorphic painting has been used since the Renaissance; great examples are the ceiling and cuppola of St. Ignatius, by Andrea Pozzo, in Rome, or “The ambassadors“, by Holbein. However, what I like of Julian Beever is not only that he literally brings the technique to the streets, but also the sense of humour that he shows when he poses with his paintings.
More on Anamorphosis: http://myweb.tiscali.co.uk/artofanamorphosis/
Related Article: Kurt Wenner paints in 3D