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Golden Shower 9/29/01 Description:
the name of the virus behind Markus Karlus and Kevin Rodgers and the monicker by which their music project is known to the public
Markus Karlus and Kevin Rodgers had a vision back in the early 90s — they saw themselves becoming the world's foremost "avant-garde classical composers" and built an amazing "audio-visual complex" that would help them pull it off. Unfortunately, a virus took over, leaving poor Markus and Kevin behind in the dust of its destruction. But the virus lived on to create its own musical masterpieces and the rest is history. What a concept! The entire album is downloadable right here at the site that dons the virus' name — I started this morning with "Coffee" and that's all it took to say "Yo, Joe — this is today's pick." Plenty of pixels and visual downloads are also waiting for you at this well-designed center of silliness and musical talent plus one of the songs even has it's own minisite — it's cooler than cool. One day, Markus and Kevin just might be "taken seriously as classical composers" but, for now, at least we can all bask in the virus' afterglow... [robocore.]
itakephotos.co.uk 9/24/01 Description:
the recreation of the beauty i see around me
"I, Martin Callanan, have asserted my moral rights to be identified as the author of this site, and artist of the work contained within it..." That's an interesting angle on the concept of copyright and I have to say I admire Martin for saying it. So many people on the web seem to feel that if they want someone's code to use on their own site, or an image or some other element of one's content strikes their fancy, that it's perfectly alright to simply take it and use it as they like. This is the web, after all, where everything is free for the taking... WRONG! In Martin's case, the content is a collection of superb photographs, taken in appreciation of the beauty he sees all around him. He's got a spiritual connection to his work with the camera — it shows in the photos. So, when it comes to copyright and Martin's "moral rights" as the author or artist, I support his attitude 100% — his work comes from his soul and his unique perspective of the world he sees — no one could duplicate it and I guess that's what makes it so special. One of the pieces is a photo essay called "lifts" that looks at how one's confinement in an elevator between floors is actually a "subculture" in itself, if only for moments. Random thoughts abound as people come and go at various stops. "We'll be here all day..." makes me think that the purpose of being in the elevator is to study others who have no idea what's really going on in there — each interaction is brief as the elevator quickly gets to the next floor. Some leave, some come on board and one remains... Far-fetched? You bet! The point is that Martin's remarkable photography, which is all his, did give me something I could freely take for myself — my interpretation of it and the impact it had on me is all mine — I can also assert my moral rights to keep what I got out of it without taking that which belongs to the author. He didn't really have to share it with anybody — the fact that he did is the other thing that makes it so special...
Tolerance.org 9/21/01 Description:
Its goal is to awaken people of all ages to the problem of hate and intolerance, to equip them with the best tolerance ideas and to prompt them to act in their homes, schools, businesses and communities.
"Yet, not a day passes without reports of unequal treatment of individuals on the basis of skin color, religion, gender, age, sexual orientation, country of origin, ability and other differences." In these difficult days following the ugly events of 9/11/01, we are all struggling to cope... to move forward... to understand. At a time like this, ignorance is not bliss! As the world is quickly uniting against terrorism, I feel it's critically important that we, as individuals, don't seek to appease our personal feelings of frustration and pain by unfairly targeting innocent citizens who just happen to be of a certain ethnic or religious background — I see it happening and as just one individual who is greatly saddened by it, I've felt helpless lately — I've wanted to scream. My single voice is only so loud, so I'm thankful to know that the organization behind today's pick is here to speak with a louder, collective voice at a time that it's needed so badly. Sure — the design of the site is excellent, but that has little to do with it, today. It's what the organization stands for and the intelligent solutions it offers that prompted today's pick. There's excellent content for kid, parents, and educators — it's about awareness and knowing what actions we can all take to "fight hate and promote tolerance." It's about time...
Fluffy Avocado 9/14/01 Description:
I use it to play and learn.
I guess some of the pictures in the "thanks" gallery include the person behind today's pick, but I really don't have a clue. The people that joined him/her for that snowboarding trip to Vail are in the photos — looks like they had a good time and the background scenery is fantastic. But, who's the mystery person? Your guess is as good as mine. I like the visuals and the simplicity of the site — album covers and insets, a little Flash, and other assorted images — all pleasing and well done. I haven't yet checked out those two huge video files, but can't help but wonder if the personality behind today's pick just might be revealed in one of them...
transpolis 9/8/01 Description:
the city as a living, breathing, ever changing organism - a design journey (Flash)
Today's pick is "a motion city" from Norwegian designer Torstein Wold. This interesting project is based on his vision of the city as a living thing and is one the best presentations of motion graphics via Flash that I've seen lately. The artistic typography and motion on the intro screen tell you you're in for a treat, and as you enter, the first image, trimmed by pieces of those artsy characters in the motion city's name plus a sleek navigator confirm that you have found something sweet. The sounds and motion are subtle and the detail is amazing. I chose to view the series in the intended order and was literally carried away by it. Moving on to the "edge of the city" where the tree in the foreground dominates, the skyline off in the distance encourages me to keep moving along. Nature and living things are always present to counterbalance the concrete and steel and Torstein's journey is engaging me from beginning to end. Profound words and soft sounds combine with a mellow beat in some spots, while other screens are somewhat frantic. "How soon is now?" is the question asked in one of those scenes of frenzied motion and I'm thinking "not soon enough." "Nothing ages" hits me towards the end and I realize that Torstein's vision of a city all hits close to home...
Sound of Design 9/3/01 Description:
Experimental Interaction with an educational focus. (Flash)
It describes itself as having educational focus. 18 interactive Flash "experiments" make up the content and each interesting demonstration, if you will, is available to download. I've picked several similar sites recently because if these talented folks love what they're doing so much that they make the source code available for others to learn from, they're using the web in a most postive way and that's worthy of a little recognition. Their sites are resources in the truest sense of the word. There's several things I really like about today's pick, which is Ty Lettau's "experimental interaction" website. The circular dial-like interface is simple and intuitive — even the stuffiest of usability experts would have difficulty refuting that point. I'm no usability expert, but I am a user and if you give me a combination of a left-arrow, a circle, and a right-arrow, I'm navigating immediately without having to think about it. The next thing to score points in my book is the quality of the pieces in Ty's collection. They load fast and contain useful actionscript examples — impressive. Finally, I love the presentation. Everything loads within the circle — what a nice change after seeing almost everything within rectangles. Here's to Ty and his educational focus — some of us out here really appreciate that...