Category Archives: Video

Food Maps From Around the World

jobamaPictures made from food or packaging are a favorite of mine, resonant not only with the subject but also the medium. And I really like maps. Doesn’t everyone?

A food stylist, Caitlin Levin, a photographer, Henry Hargreaves, and a typographer, Sarit Melmed, have collaborated on a series of maps of the world, each made with local foods.

Unlike this packaging portrait of President Obama, the results are quite attractive, even if the point is somewhat obscure. Surely there is more to say about Africa than plantains. More to say about the US than corn. More to say about the UK than biscuits.

So ignore the rationale. The pictures are nice and good fun. Kristin Hohenadel wrote about these, with lots of examples, at Slate.

The artists explain themselves and show their method in a video.

Some Ukraine Illumination

Reading stories about the bloody riots in Ukraine, it was difficult to know what was really going on. Who was protesting and why? The answers and explanations were often contradictory, once you got past the obvious issues with the government.

This VICE documentary does a pretty good job of showing the diversity of ideology among the participants in the Kiev protests, represented by different groups fighting the current government.

Prime movers are the nationalist Right Sector, right wingers, but there is also a serious progressive element to the protests, as well as a more mainstream group. For now, at least, the different sides are joined by their mutual hatred for the present government and fear of Russian annexation.

The bottom line is that the people of Ukraine are standing up to the government and its special police (the regular police are refusing to act against the protestors) in decisive and dramatic terms, even though they themselves don’t agree about what comes next.

What Do I Desire?

watts-wisdomofinsecuritycoverAlan Watts was the Joyous Cosmologist, as the title of a book he wrote claimed. He was a major philosophical figure in the 50s and 60s, the writer of many books, and a popularizer of Asian religions and philosophies.

Here he gives a Ted Talk that long predates Ted, and gets to one of the key questions about life. He does it artfully, uses the word retch in a memorable phrase, and you can listen here.

New Sherlocks Start Tomorrow! Yawn.

what-calm-i-m-waiting-for-sherlock-season-3-6But not for the reason you think. My daughter was so excited by the prospect of new episodes of Sherlock that I hooked up Tunnelbear to my internet connection. Tunnelbear is VPN software that anonymizes your data stream, so you can watch local content from other countries. So we streamed Sherlock from the BBC1 website in the UK, just as if we were holed up in our seaside cottage in Port Wen in Cornwall, eating pasties.

Tunnelbear works great, and it also encrypts all your data, so you can’t be tapped by evil doers in public wifi hotspots and the NSA everywhere. At least in theory. They gift you with 500mb of data per month, and if you Tweet their praises @thetunnelbear they’ll give you another GB, which combined is enough for more than an hour of TV watching a month from England or France or a few other countries they have servers. For $5 a month or $50 per year you can use the service as much as you like. This advertisement generates no remuneration, it is just an expression of amazement and enthusiasm.

With a one-month subscription our little one and her little friend have seen the whole season of the gangly detective and his very nice sidekick, already, and won’t be troubled by the late night scheduling on a school night during mid-term time that caused so much consternation last time. No spoilers, but I’m told episode 2 is just the best Sherlock ever.

Super Slo Mo In The Subway: 42nd Street

Adam Magyar shoots 50 FPS video of the people standing on the platform from the train as it makes its way into the station. He then slows it down, so that just a fraction of a second of real time becomes seconds. The tracking effect of the moving train is real, but the people seem frozen, stilled in time. The effect is ghostly and voyeuristic. See for yourself.

Adam Magyar – Stainless, 42 Street (excerpt) from Adam Magyar on Vimeo.