March 22, 2004

Visually Evoked Potentials

Mind Balance: Robert Burke's Home Page

Detectable electrical artifacts in brain processing is how mind control works in 2004. The MindGames team at Media Lab Europe are inventing the future with a tight-roping Scottish monster.

I wanna walk the Mawg!

Posted by .M. at 10:21 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

March 21, 2004


The XBox linux community is in full swing now with products like Xbox Media Center justifying the efforts of the really persistent.

Posted by .M. at 09:33 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

March 18, 2004

360 video recording

AVI "Sphere Movies" technology. No demos as yet.

Immersive Media Company

Posted by .M. at 06:02 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack


What is there not to love about a website showcasing directors who work across various forms of media... with a homepage laid out like the Commodore 64 start screen.

Features Chris Cunningham, Michel Gondry and Athens Music Video

Posted by .M. at 05:48 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

March 16, 2004

March 12, 2004

Illegal Art

Illegal Art: Freedom of Expression in the Corporate Age is selling magazines, DVD-Rs of sampling artists work and providing links to the notorious "Grey Album" by DJ Dangermouse (via P2P).

The latter is "The Grey Album is an art project/experiment that uses the full vocal
content of Jay-Z's Black Album recorded over new beats and production
made using the Beatles White Album as the sole source material."

In Wired Magazine, Glenn Otis Brown, executive director of Creative Commons, is quoted as being surprised that the labels don't recognize a win-win situation and license the songs to get a cut of the profits.

"Mixing together two old things is creating a new thing".

Posted by .M. at 02:05 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

March 11, 2004

Semantic Web made easy

They say that it's important to keep "what you do" to a simple phrase. Well, in theory, one day I will be able to say "I make films for the Semantic Web" and not get blank stares.

As the W3C's new "easy" explanation explains, it all comes down to having a trust network.

Posted by .M. at 02:12 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack


From the NY Times:

Amateur Celebrities Pick a Movie and Join In

"But movieoke mostly works, as an almost logical extension of fame-obsessed karaoke culture. While it may have actually begun years ago with fans acting out scenes from "The Rocky Horror Picture Show" in theaters, it now seems to have come fully of age. And Ms. Fite is working hard to legitimize her claim to having invented it."

One for all the re-mixers and MOD'ers out there to watch.

Posted by .M. at 12:32 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack


"WISP is a collection of experiences for the PS2 console. Human and strange. Animal and familiar. Happy and sad. Music made from people. Stories crossing each other. Japanese and English. Language and translation. Sound and shapes. Seeing stories and hearing tales. Films and pictures. Music and sound.

There is gameplay on WISP, but there are no games. There is no story that holds the whole thing together, but there are stories. WISP isn't a music title but it's filled with music."

UK release date (March 17th 04)

Posted by .M. at 11:57 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

March 10, 2004

Creative Commons icons

The Creative Commons brands is making people think about sharing when they publish films and video. By licensing footage and work with free-for-non-commercial-use, a growing pool of material is becoming available for creative projects that weave threads of new narrative through sampling.

Posted by .M. at 11:42 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Fan films

There is an unprecendented degree of coverage of big budget productions, like LOTR, and yet, despite the range of interactive technology available to the production, most of these products are passive. Few are dynamically derived, direct from the source material.

The gap between film fan and film fan who plays games is not supported by these products and arguably open for exploitation in the future.

At the same time, Hollywood studios continue to resort to legal action on fans whenever they tamper with film licenses. Only recently have certain fan films been tolerated by license holders but only if they re-create (not sample) film art purely for non-commercial use. Warner (e.g. Superman) and Viacom (e.g. Star Trek) have been known to shut down web sites with fan-sampled IP. The largest community is (part of Star Wars fan site). As of 20/11/2003, there are 36 Star Wars short films and 15 animations on There is also one Batman short (the highly acclaimed Batman: Dead End and 3 Matrix shorts).

Posted by .M. at 12:31 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

March 09, 2004

Now the Movie

NOW THE MOVIE - A COLLABORATIVE FILM PROJECT is a UK funded exercise in creating a film from contributions made by the global network of film-makers.

Posted by .M. at 10:52 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

March 05, 2004

Blogging the BAFTAs

Time to try and filter my hazy recollection of the inaugural BAFTA Interactive Festival (Feb 17-19) through a developer perspective. I’ve even emulated the hard living gamer types I know in the interest of authenticity. It’s done my lungs and liver no good at all.Are the results in on that recent survey on the quality of life in the games industry? Hah!

Despite not attracting nearly enough developers, the BAFTA Festival was successful in bringing together a mix of 'interactive' people that normally exist in parallel universes. BAFTA is fairly uniquely placed to nurture a creative community spanning linear and non-linear entertainment. At a time when spreadsheets are merging, the cross-pollination of interactive entertainers has barely begun.

Only a few years ago I seem to vaguely remember the film and game industries announcing "There will be no convergence."? Well times have changed and the Festival dedicated a whole day to the subject. Certainly amongst the weird non-gamer types I tend to hang out with, this seemed to be somewhat of a draw card even if, for many of them, interactive entertainment consists of reading recycled jokes in the email. The irony is that this is the year that BAFTA, in response to industry feedback, has split the traditional Interactive Awards into separate Games Awards and Interactive Awards. It had to happen but here’s hoping that both ‘sides’ stay in touch even if only to avoid re-inventing the flat tyre.

Forget the market-speak and sales-talk, I was looking to talk to game developers. It wasn’t easy. The only developers in evidence were either ‘the names’ up on the panels or the alumni of various famous titles. Where were the rest of you? Down the pub heaping scorn on the establishment? Cooped up in a code farm? Waiting for the webcast? Who knows but you were missed.

Sound folk were unusually visible with a welcome number of audio sessions. From an ‘interactive audio in games’ discussion hosted by John Broomhall to ear-splitting 3D spatial surround performances hosted by the Illustrious Company, the message was loud and clear - ignore the ‘poor relation’ of creative arts at your peril. Yet the irony was also clear that game sound people aren’t coming close to pushing the audio capabilities of current devices like the XBOX, hamstrung by cross-platform development constraints. How about letting us publish a couple of audio-only titles, Bill? We all know kids using the box more as a jukebox then anything.

As expected, the best sound bites were invariably low-tech. The installation artist Charlie Morrow, in between blowing on his conch shell, forecast that the future of sound (as per the name of the session) would involve the loss of hearing. He urged the crowd to "go to nature to get in tune with the system that built us". Meanwhile Peter Molyneux reminded ‘The Movies’ sneak-preview audience that anyone attempting to really make a film is mad.

Going back to nature was a theme I picked up again in the session I chaired (‘What’s the Story?’) on interactive story-telling. A debate between film-makers and game designers had a diverse audience from all walks of life. The discussion exposed many home truths. No one really knows how to deliver interactive fiction. Games miss out on the equivalent of film vocabulary to inform you of what is about to happen. Film-makers relish the fluidity of real-life shooting. MODs make for interesting times. And lastly low tech, albeit money-spinning, interactive entertainment like the Sing-a-long Sound of Music is totally under the industry radar. Keep it simple stupid? Yeah right…

For those who made the effort, it was the diversity of perspectives on offer which provided the pay-off. The school and university exhibits were a real highlight. Teenagers tracking video motion, primary school kids filming stop-motion animation… Let’s face it, we’re still laying down the turf. Can we PLEASE have some real fun while we’re doing it?

At the heart of the convergence debate there seems to be a worrying assertion that the game industry has to simply to learn the ropes from the film industry. Is it really appropriate to use Hollywood as a template? Let’s not ape an industry grappling with its own spiralling costs, technological upheaval and entrenched forms of social and gender inequality. Under the hype, the power struggles says precious little about where art is coming from. So go figure why it’s ‘technically impossible’ to make a game on your own these days. Who’s zooming who? How about some game equivalents of the Blair Witch Project next year? Developer awards? Feminine game designs that go beyond global search and replacing lad brand with girlie brand?

Maybe it boils down to this. Art produced in a vacuum ain’t art. Sorry. Not in a networked world and perhaps never. The interesting stuff is coming from the cross-pollination of several industries, all keeping each other on their toes. Maybe the truth of the matter, clearer after throwing different kinds of practitioners in a venue for a few days, is that the zeitgeist comes from those who try. Trying in this game means a certain willingness to share.

Posted by .M. at 08:28 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

March 03, 2004


Bodysong was commissioned as a part film/part web site project with the research that went into each and every shot showcased and available online.

Posted by .M. at 04:40 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

My Little Eye

My Little Eye is a Big Brother-style horror movie that works better on DVD than for cinema thanks to a very sophisticated Special Edition DVD that presents the movie in a web interface with multi-track audio and multi-camera views available.

Posted by .M. at 04:37 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

March 02, 2004

The Law of Accelerating Returns

Ray Kurzweil, never short on an idea, grapples with the concept of exponential growth leading to the Singularity.

Posted by .M. at 05:09 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Finding Nemo

CGNetworks cover the making of 'Finding Nemo'.

Posted by .M. at 11:54 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Return of the King

CGNetworks cover the VFX of 'Return of the King'.

Posted by .M. at 11:52 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack