Tag Archives: technology

Beery, beery creative

I have more than one friend and/or family member who records their beer consumption on Twitter.

Why yes, I am very proud.

beer namesThe app shows the beer name, where they were when they swigged it, and how long they breathed — if indeed they did — between frosty brews.

Now, I’m not much of a beer drinker, but I find myself looking forward to this digital diary…and wanting to participate even though I don’t like it!

Luckily I found the perfect way:

The Random Beer Name Generator.

Just click the button, and it generates a way cool beer name.  For example, it just gave me “Irish Elvis Dubble”…

So let’s pretend that’s what I drank this round.


You might see yourself here

The best thing I saw at the movie theatre yesterday was an ad during the pre-show.

No offense to the movie.

I really enjoyed Oblivion, starring Tom Cruise and Morgan Freeman. It had great action, an interesting conceit and an ending that I did not see coming.

But this commercial for Windows Phone made me laugh aloud.

Truth is funny.

Did someone hit redial?

Happy 40th Birthday, Cellphone!

cellphone birthdayThat’s right.  Forty years ago today, Motorola engineer Martin Cooper made the first cellphone call — to one of his rival engineers at Bell Labs, no less — and made telecommunications history.

Looking at your ‘baby photo’ at left — a cellphone model that I see turn up in old movies and television sitcom reruns all the time — I can honestly say…

You look even younger today.

(You really do.)

Pixelated, man

My German taxi driver shared an interesting theory today.

He has stopped watching TV because there are subliminal messages between the pixels that hypnotize you.

His concerns were based on the work of a Russian scientist (so you know it’s true).

The conversation took me back to my advertising classes in college.  Of course, back then we were discussing subliminal imagery — ways to get people to buy without realizing they had been manipulated — so his theory isn’t that far afield.

He also posits that the longer you sit there, the more hypnotized you become and the more open to the message.

I’ll give him the hypnotized part…but could the producers of some of these really dumb reality shows be smart enough to embed messaging that would, say, overturn the government?

(Come to think of it, it would explain the Tea Party….)

People — step away from your flat screens!


Like nostalgia?

This image of the Pinwheel Galaxy, captured by four NASA telescopes, is estimated to be millions of years behind.

Wrap your head around that one, and have a nice day.

Get the message

I love watching movies on the big screen. Many of my friends prefer to stay at home.

Price is only one factor.

They hate having their movie ruined by chattering, texting, rude people in the theatre.

Let’s face it — it happens more often than not.

And it might be getting a lot worse.

At a recent CinemaCon panel in Las Vegas, movie executives from Regal and IMAX chains said they both had discussed allowing texting during movie screenings to make the experience more interactive for younger viewers.



It’s bad enough already, with cellphones randomly lighting up the theatre and distracting your eye from the screen.  Imagine what it would look like if they were on throughout the film.  The incessant clicking.  The chatter as people shared text messages.

If movie executives want to lose customers, it’s the perfect business model.

Text them that.

Play big!

Over the weekend, students at MIT hacked the Green Building on campus and made it play Tetris.

It’s not the first time a college building’s lights have been hijacked.  Students at Brown University and Delft University in the Netherlands pulled off similar stunts years earlier.

But it’s still pretty darn fun.

And I think New York City should consider itself challenged — not the colleges per se, but all the wonderfully tall buildings that occupy downtown and bring in millions of tourists each year.

Sure, we have dancing snowflakes on the side of the Sax Fifth Avenue Building each Christmas, but I’m talking bigger.  Taller.  Faster.

I’m looking at you, Empire State Building.

We know you can vary the lights at the very tip-top to reflect the seasons.  How about using the lights on the side of the building to create the biggest video game in the world?

If you don’t do it, I’ll bet there’s a hacker out there who will.

Game on.


Dear Time Warner Cable:  Two is not enough.

(As in the number of HD shows I can record concurrently per DVR.)

I have always been aware of this restriction.  But there will come a night — like tonight, Sunday night — when I have three shows in one given time slot that I want to watch and/or record.

And I’m forced to make Sophie’s Choice.

Yes, I know some or all of these programs may be available online. But call me old-fashioned — I like watching my favorite shows on my big ol’ LCD TV.

Not on my laptop or iPad.  Unless forced.

And this ‘two program limit per DVR’ is forcing me to not watch television in the comfort of my own living room.


Smelly cat

As society and technologies advance, some practices become archaic.

So why are people still bathing in cologne and perfume?

Most people in the United States — emphasis on most — bathe on a regular basis.  Lots of folks I know shower twice a day due to workouts and runs, god love ‘em.

So as a rule — and again, I’m generalizing here — men and women in the US are pretty darn clean.

So why the need to surround yourself in a cloud of cloying cologne?  When you walk down the sidewalk, it’s practically visible.  Passersby choke on it.  Folks who hug you are left unwilling wearers of it.

And let’s not even discuss your elevator assassinations.

Perfumes were initially reserved for burial rituals, then became popular as a way to cover the stench of the great unwashed.  We are no longer — as a rule — the great unwashed.  A little goes a really long way.

Think before you spray.

Rise of the machines

Robot skeleton army, unite!  Or should I say…

Get in your car and drive?

Robots can now apply for a drivers license in the state of Nevada.

I guess it’s not surprising that the state that legalized gambling and prostitution would also be one of the first to let robots legally rule the road.

The lack of human driver won’t be the only clue.  Robot cars will bear a red license plate during the testing phase, and then switch to green once proven road worthy.

If this all isn’t space age-y enough, know how Nevada governor Brian Sandoval was convinced to sign the licensing bill into law?

A Google campaign.  The Internet convinced the humans to give robots equal rights.

Geoff Peterson, take note…

You are winning!