Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Posts Tagged ‘video’

Every now and then you experience something completely new, a window into another world that you hadn’t anticipated, but one that may well become ordinary in a year or two. I’ve just been watching The Wilderness Downtown, an interactive and personalised ‘video’ that takes you back to the place you were born.

thewildernessdowntown.com

You type in your address or postcode and it weaves together music, film, animation and graphics with video images of your childhood home. It’s fantastic. (You need Google Chrome as a browser – it won’t work with Internet Explorer. Chrome is pretty good – I’ve been using it for a few months on my laptop; and it’s very easy to download.)

Still from Arcade Fire's viral video The Wilderness Downtown

Jemima Kiss explains:

It keeps crashing on me, but I’ve had enough of a blast to be inspired – it’s the heavenly Arcade Fire video built in collaboration with Google and director Chris Milk.

The Wilderness Downtown combines Arcade Fire’s We Used To Wait with some beautiful animation and footage – courtesy of Street View – of your childhood home – made all the more poignant for me because it was bulldozed a few years ago.

Thomas Gayno from Google’s Creative Labs described it on the Chrome Blog: “It features a mash-up of Google Maps and Google Street View withHTML5 canvas, HTML5 audio and video, an interactive drawing tool, and choreographed windows that dance around the screen. These modern web technologies have helped us craft an experience that is personalised and unique for each viewer, as you virtually run through the streets where you grew up.”

The Chrome Experiments blog explains each technique, including the flock of birds that respond to the music and mouse movements, created with the HTML5 Canvas 3D engine, film clips played in windows at custom sizes, thanks to HTML5, and various colour correction, drawing and animation techniques.

I’ve watched thousands of videos thanks to the curse of the viral video chart and nothing has come close to this for originality, imagination and for that inspired piece of personalised storytelling.

There’s plenty more inspiration on the Chrome Experiments blog; Bomomo is pretty slick, and Canopy is hypnotic.

Read Full Post »

Be honest. Keep a tally of how many minutes of TV you watch each day. Add it up. What’s the weekly total? And the more interesting question: Has this figure gone up or down over the last few years?

Chicken watching TV or TV watching chicken?

Everyone thought that the internet and social media would kill television, just as they thought that cinemas would become extinct with the arrival of the video recorder. But it hasn’t happened.

British viewers watched an average of three hours and 45 minutes of television a day in 2009, 3% more than in 2004, according to research published by the media regulator Ofcom. Here are some thoughts from John Plunkett:

TV continues to take centre stage in people’s evenings, boosted by the popularity of shows such as The X Factor, Britain’s Got Talent and Doctor Who.

Television’s popularity has also been boosted by digital video recorders (DVRs), now in 37% of households – and the introduction of high definition television, now in more than 5 million UK homes.

“Television still has a central role in our lives. We are watching more TV than at any time in the last five years,” said James Thickett, director of market research and market intelligence at Ofcom.

New technology offered viewers an enhanced, easy-to-use viewing experience, with 15% of all viewing time spent watching programmes recorded on to a DVR, he said.

“Unlike VHS, which was such a hassle to set up and record a programme that only a very small proportion of viewing was on video, DVRs give viewers the chance to watch the programmes they really want to watch. It is bringing people back into the living room.”

The UK’s ageing population has also pushed up the figures. Older people are likely to watch more television, with the average 65-year-old watching five hours and 14 minutes a day. And it’s to do with the increasing number of channels too:

Digital television passed the 90% threshold for the first time last year, with 92.1% of homes having digital TV by the first quarter of 2010. The average weekly reach of multichannel television exceeded that of the five main TV channels – BBC1, BBC2, ITV1, Channel 4 and Channel 5 – also for the first time in 2009.

“More people are getting access to a greater number of channels and that’s translating into greater number of viewing hours per person,” said Richard Broughton, a senior analyst at the audiovisual research company Screen Digest.

“Various people have predicted that the internet would kill off television but we have always said that TV would be here for a long time to come. It’s much harder for broadcasters and production companies to monetise content online, and there are all sorts of things that broadcast can do that online can’t, such as high definition.”

Broughton said viewers were using Facebook and Twitter while watching the television, rather than switching it off altogether. “In many cases television is complemented [by social media platforms] and not necessarily a direct competitor,” he added.

I was about to write that the beauty of cinema is that you are forced to give your attention to one image, and that you have to leave all your other digital distractions behind. But then I remembered a recent visit to the cinema when the guy in front of me was texting even after the film had begun. It breaks your heart…

Read Full Post »

%d bloggers like this: