Archive for September, 2007

Graphic designers, rejoice! Rsizr brings Seam Carving to the masses.

1458377795_4300e6843e.jpg @ 100% (RGB/8#)

What you’re looking at above is a dynamically scaled image which uses Seam Carving Technology in order to remove data safely from the image to prevent distortion. In (somewhat) layman’s terms, this means that the original image on the left has been resized using a method which automatically removes the “non important” bits of the image to bring it down to the desired sized without distorting the “important bits”, resulting in the image on the right.

It’s less complicated than it sounds:

The introduction of this technology has been around for a few months, but Orli over at Go2Web2 posts about Rsizr (via: Kosmar), an online image editing application which allows users to play around with the technology for themselves.

The image above is a good example of how powerful this algorithm is, however, it’s success largely depends on the image you’re trying to resize. Here’s an example for a photo that does not scale well, due to it’s background. As you can see, images with intricate background details, especially geometric shapes, don’t work out well at all:

1458373991_a9a511aca8.jpg @ 100% (RGB/8*)

The following image illustrates this best. Notice how the building itself is somewhat distorted on it’s left side, but the swans have been brought closer together beautifully:

1459243242_cfb696f014.jpg @ 100% (RGB/8#)

You can play with this tool for yourself, make sure you have the latest version of Flash plugin installed and head on over to

The Decemberists at the Kampnagel in Hamburg

The Decemberists played a great show last night at Hamburg’s Kampnagel.

All of the songs played during the show were from their new-ish album “The Crane Wife” and some interesting versions of songs on the album (such as “The Perfect Crime 2″, out on their new EP). I was dissapointed that they didn’t play “16 Military Wives” or “The Chimbley Sweep“, but as Colin said as he paused to address an irritating member of crowd: “It was nice meeting you, thanks for coming, it’s always nice to hear what others think of the order in which we should be playing our songs“.

The band surprised us by playing an unplugged version of “The Mariner’s Revenge Song” as an encore. I didn’t manage to catch it on video, but I’ve got some great photos (Felix holstered me up on his shoulders):

Flickr Photo Download: The Decemberists at Kampnagel Hamburg Sep 29th 2007

The Decemberists – The Mariner’s Revenge Song

You can check out the rest of the photos, all in full size here.

(Video by Phil)

See the rest of the videos here (2 more).

Daft Hands – Harder, Better, Faster, Stronger

Via Kosmar

This is some fancy fingerwork – VERY impressive stuff. I can’t even imagine how many hours of practice it took to get this done in one shot.

Crank up your speakers.

Don’t forget to watch this great response.

Plazmalab finally go online, continue Central EU tour, sell cool stuff

My funny funky furry feathered friends from Plazma are finally online!

Plazma are a graphic design and fashion lab in Tel Aviv (Israel) who make wonderful, creative clothing and awesome graphic design bits. I had the pleasure working for them back in 2005 before moving to Germany. Their clothing line is sold all over Europe, and if you’re lucky, you can find their tour bus driving around Germany until the end of the year (click for massive view).

Their website is an impressive showcase of 3D animation, make sure to give them a visit!

UPDATE: They’re in Hamburg for the next two weeks, RUN!

Yes, That’s a Hamburg license plate.

Mobile wallpaper for social networking fans

For those of you who love their social networks and would like to tote around some mobile wallpaper love, I’ve crafted these 320×240 mobile wallpapers for you to download to your mobile phone and give to your friends.

These wallpapers were made by me, but all name and logo copyrights belong to their respective owners, Distribute freely, but remember to credit copyright owners and the grand graphic designers hard at work at the offices of your favorite social network who do a marvelous job!

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Mobile Wallpaper 2.0


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Mobile Wallpaper 2.0

If I missed your favorite social network, feel free to put in a request in the comments and I’ll see what I can do :) Due to time constraints, requests are currently closed. Thanks for understanding!

DVD of the week: “Shabbat Shalom, motherf***ers!”

The guys and I watched The Hebrew Hammer last night and had a great time.

Here’s what Wikipedia has to say about the film:

“The Hebrew Hammer is a film that was released in 2003. It stars Adam Goldberg, Judy Greer, Andy Dick, Mario Van Peebles, and Peter Coyote. The plot concerns a Jewish superhero known as The Hebrew Hammer who must save Hanukkah from the evil son of Santa Claus who wants to destroy Hanukkah and make everyone celebrate Christmas. The film parodies blaxploitation films; it even features Melvin Van Peebles as “Sweetback”. Director Jonathan Kesselman has jokingly dubbed it the first “Jewsploitation”, or Jewish exploitation film ever.

The Hebrew Hammer parodies many common stereotypes about Jews. During filming, the movie came to the attention of the Anti-Defamation League, who were concerned that it might promote unfavorable images of Jews. After viewing it, they concluded that the film was not antisemitic in any way.

While the movie is intended to be enjoyed by Jews and non-Jews alike, there are certain jokes that require some explanation if the viewer is not familiar with Judaism.”

I found the latter to be extremely true. What more, is that two folks out of our small audience missed out on quite a few jokes, being Israeli. The movie relies heavily on Jewish-American culture as the butt of it’s jokes, most of which Jews of other cultures are probably going to miss (such as the reference to Manischewitz)

Here’s the trailer:

And if you’ve got a moment, you can spend it “the Jewish way” and play a game of Gentile Invaders.

I’m in like with who?

Sometimes it takes me a while to “get” web 2.0 trends. Twitter was a mystery to me and there are quite a few online services which have me confused as to their purpose. This normally goes away after a while, but it takes some serious engagement on my part to actively try and figure out what the fuss is all about. What can I say – I’ve been on the web since Geocities were still assinging street names.

I’m in like with you is one of these such confusing websites.
It’s a social network with one purpose – to allow you to waste your time, socially. That’s actually not a bad idea – we all need distraction during our daily work, it helps reboot our brains – as long as it doesn’t actually distract you long enough from getting things done. “I’m in like with you” seems to be the perfect solution for today’s ADHD internet behavior.

So what is it? Good question. “I’m in like with you” allows you to pick up “points”. You use these points, in turn, to bid on “games”, which are basically a series of questions posted by other users. If you outbid the rest, you get to spend some internet “quality time” with the person who asked the question. Confusing? It is.

“I’m in like with you” have excellent interface design. They recently put their newer interface into testing, which is flash based and not as comfortable to use as their current layout. It is, and has been my general opinion that entire flash-based layouts need to be avoided at all costs – “I’m in like with you” have an excellent current layout, it’s a shame they’re going the “dark route”. I can see myself toying around with their website much less after a flash layout is introduced.

If you’re interested in checking the website out – leave me a comment to this post with your email address, and I’ll send an invitation your way. Sorry, all gone.

Sting enjoying what Hamburg has to “offer”

I don’t normally feed on tabloid news, but since this is local, it amuses me.

The Daily Mail is reporting that Mr. Sumner himself, otherwise known as Sting, has been enjoying what Hamburg has to “offer”. Hamburg has one of Europe’s most famous red-light disctricts and it seems like the artist is taking advantage of it during his stay here (his band The Police played a show a few days ago).

Okay, enough with this rediculousness. Back to our regularly scheduled program.

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