Xbox Kinect, if you didn’t know already, is the motion sensor plug-in for Microsoft’s all conquering Xbox 360 games console. The wireless webcam device is as good as it gets when it comes to video game (although ‘video game’ seems like an old school phrase now) interaction and beyond. Using an infrared laser projector and microchip for 3D motion tracking called ‘Light Coding’, the Kinect sensor creates a laser grid to calculate depth. The technology allows for gesture, facial and voice/ sound recognition. We’re certainly a long way from the days of Pong now…
One of the greatest filmmakers of all time, American-born Stanley Kubrick is famed for unique cinematography, powerful music scores and superb attention to detail. Kubrick also proved he could do any genre including war (Full Metal Jacket), black-comedy (Dr. Strangelove), horror (The Shining) and science fiction (2001: Space Odyssey).
If you haven’t yet seen Skyfall, the latest James Bond blockbuster, you might want to look away. Unfortunately, near the end of the film a Silver Birch Austin Martin DB5 – just like the one driven by Sean Connery in Goldfinger – gets blown to smithereens. ‘No way!’ you cry. No, not really, it was in fact a 3D printed model of an Austin Martin DB5 and not the all-time classic Bond car. Phew…
Amon Tobin, Brazilian electronic musician, has just finished touring with his ISAM project, an audio-visual bombardment of the senses. Not your typical dance music gig, it’s a more cinematic approach to electronic beat performance. Ironic that Tobin once published the words: “f**k the visuals, we’re sinking every last penny into the sound-system” on his website.
Have you been wondering what to do with all those Lego bricks you ‘grew out of’ a few years ago? Well, before you put them on ebay, why not try building your own beat sequencer. By combining those little Danish bits of plastic with the DJ software Ableton Live, SoundMachine converts the colour information of the bricks to generate a synthesised beat.
Philips, the largest lighting manufacturer in the world, has a new wireless LED lighting system that can produce over 16 million colour variations. Not only are the LED bulbs controlled remotely via your wireless router, they are also energy saving. You can connect to 50 of these bulbs using a smartphone, tablet or web browser. Blinking heck!
Bicycles have been enjoying a real renaissance over the last few years and unless you’ve been living in the outback recently you’ll be aware of how much press the sport of road racing has been getting over what some term performance enhancing drugs. Well, we’re not too bothered about Louis Armstrong and whatever he got up to trying to get to the Moon and back. But we are rather intrigued by this little project: The Toyota Prius x Parlee concept Bike.
Controlling the weather is something a lot of people in the UK wish they could do. A look out the window 9 times out of 10 will tell you how disappointing the forecast usually is. When the sun comes out it’s a mad dash to the park or any corner of an outdoor space to soak up those sunrays. We put up with more than our fair share of cloud, rain, cloud and rain. So why on earth would you want to create even more rain?
Holography, from the Greek words for “whole” and “writing/ drawing”, is the technique for creating three-dimensional images. Discovered accidentally by physicist Dennis Gabor in the 1940s, it was only when lasers developed in the 1960s that the first optical hologram was created. Using halogen-based photographic emulsions to record 3-D images on 2-D surfaces, in simple terms holograms split and stretch recorded light into 3-D shapes.