There's nothing like giving somebody something awesome that also helps streamline their life, help them be more productive, or enjoy what they have just a little bit more...and those, friends, are (say it with me) tech gifts!
Of course, most standard issue popular technology - your smartphones, laptops, iPods, Xboxes, etc - are often pricey, and more than you want to spend on the average gift recipient.
Enter this great roundup - thirty tech gifts under $50!
Drinkify is new web app that makes a cocktail suggestion based on what music your listening to. Simply type in the artist currently cruising out of your speakers, and press "what should I drink?" (in lovely Futura), and it'll pull up the perfect drink to match.
Whenever I'm aiming tocreate an illustration or a graphic, I go straight to Adobe Illustrator. It is, hands down, my favorite program to design in. The only problem with Illustrator, however, is that the vector graphics you create sometimes look too clean and flat. Personally, I like a little bit of texture in my designs. Computers are great, but there's no reason no to mimic the amazing feel and appeal of paper or fabric.
So today I'll be showing you some basic tips on how to add textures to vector graphics or text using Photoshop. The thing about Photoshop, as you may know, is that there are 100 different ways to achieve the same effect. Some people may use completely different techniques to create textures, and that's just fine. My process isn't necessarily the best, but it's what I like to do.
While the image above works as a pretty amazing piece of digital art on its own, its actually the entire five minutes and fifty-eight seconds of Queen's "Bohemian Rhapsody" mapped out into playable component parts.
It's cleverly dubbed "Bohemian Rhapisichord,"
Since Steve Jobs passed away on October 5, there has been an incredible array of artistic tributes to the man that gave so many creative folks the tools to express themselves. I, for one, have been an Apple fanatic since September 15, 1994, the day my family got our first computer: a Power Macintosh 7100. That day also happened to be my 11th birthday. But I digress.
A few weeks ago, Facebook announced their new "Timeline." The company explained it like this: "The original Profile was sort of like the last five minutes of your life. The updated Proile from 2008 extended that to show what was sort of like the last 15 minutes or your life. The new Profile unveiled today is “the rest,” Zuckerberg noted. He calls this feature Timeline. "It’s the heart of your Facebook experience, completely rethought from the ground up,” Zuckerberg says, noting that they’ve been working on it all year. “Timeline is the story of your life.”
Several technology gifted souls have already embraced the new profile design to great effect.
UK artist Jennifer Collier creates "fabrics" from recycled paper, and then uses them to recreate household objects. "The papers are treated as if cloth, with the main technique employed being stitch; a contemporary twist on traditional textiles. The papers themselves serve as both the inspiration and the media for my work, with the narrative of the books and papers suggesting the forms."
For centuries, the adage "the right tool for the job" has rang true in all sorts of creative, artistic, and handmade fields. That's no different in 2011, where the image-heavy, fast production-centric digital world demands we keep up with the times. And so, we turn to gadgets and technology to make our creative world more productive and more awesome.
But, which accessories and gadgets to invest in?
Damnyouautocorrect.com is a website that catalogs all those funny, irreverant, and often embrassing things that happen when you send someone a message on the iPhone, and it corrects your spelling or word choice into...well, something you definitely didn't intend.
The editors of the site have rounded up the fifteen most popular from their archives. Not surprisingly, there are a lot of conversations with Moms.
Like most internet people, I've been playing around with Google Plus for the last few weeks, and, like most internet people, I'm still trying to figure out how it works.
My circles are unorthodoxly organized, I guess. I have two, and they are:
It makes as much sense to me as anything else.
Sure, when thinking of the word "geek," it's easy to conjure up images of less-than-attractive guys, obsessed with technology or role playing games or fantasy novels. But, I believe that anyone who's passionate about stuff is gonna be a geek about something, whether sports, celebrity gossip, music, or even design.
I try my best not to just throw up pretty pictures and go on and on about how much I love them, but for these paper sculptures of vintage electronics, I have to make an exception.
Cause I do. Love them, I mean.
If you thought PeeWee Herman's Rube Goldberg breakfast machine was impressive, check this thing out.
The Pancake Bot is built from LEGO bricks and gears, and uses air pressure to deliver pancake batter to the griddle in all kinds of designs.
See it in action in this video:
Instagram is a half iPhone app/half photo sharing way to spice up your mobile phone pics with Lomo-like filters, vintage colors, vignettes, etc. Mostly, at least according to my Twitter feed, people use it to "age" their pictures of their dogs and kids or themselves looking off to the side thirty or forty years, but in the hands of the right people (as with most things), it's a pretty great artistic tool.
Dave Arnold, Director of Technology at the French Culinary Institute, has imagined a burger of the future. What's so different? Oh, well, it begins with gluing strips of bacon together with Activia RM, then making a ketchup and veal stock gel with calcium lactate gluconate, which is then cut into a little circle and stuffed inside a patty made from short ribs and chuck. Then, the patty is deep fried, cooked with butter in an immersion circulator, then grilled on a makeshift charcoal grill, while toasted rye, pickles, cheese, and the bacon sheet are all cut into perfect circles. The sandwich is assembled, and when cut, the ketchup/stock gel explodes onto the plate.
Or, just watch the video:
Screensavers are a tough bit. On the one hand, they're good for your computer, they save energy, and they provided security. On the other, well, it's tough to find an attractive one. One that's simple, not distracting, and doesn't look like, well, the screen saver that came with your operating system.
But don't set it to black just yet. May I suggest installing one of these awesome, mod clock screen savers?
You know when you go to an artist's website or museum, and they have their artist statement or exhibit explaination, and it's full of nice fancy language? Those are hard to write. One, because you're in a museum, and you have to sound smart; and two, it's hard to write about a visceral, sensory experience. I'm not gonna break out the old "it's like dancing about architecture..." trope, but it's, well, kinda like...hopscotching for social justice? Napping for typography? Riding bikes for cancer? (Actually, they do that... Speaking of which, I gotta get into shape.)
I carry my iPhone with me wherever I go, and often, my DSLR and at least two lenses. I often use my phone's camera for taking notes, quick photos to send to Twitter, etc, but I still like having the dials, controls, and depth-of-field provided my actual camera...
My heavy, bulky, likely unnecessary camera.
At least, so says Objective Scenes, a "a group blog dedicated to the art of mobile photography. All pictures are shot and edited exclusively on mobile devices (iPhones, Android, etc)."
No one will argue that spam in your inbox is just junk, not because it never actually says anything, but because it's impossible to imagine that anyone can actually make money of misspelled words for medicine and penis-enlargers.
Turns out, that's not entirely true. People do click, send money, and actually get products. Sorta.