Philippe Starck had an epiphany, after all these years: "Everything I have designed is absolutely unnecessary," the French star designer admitted in a recent interview with the German weekly DIE ZEIT. I had the dubious pleasure of hanging out in the Starck-designed Volar club in Shanghai last weekend, and my initial reaction to his statement was: yeah, right! I've never really liked his pompose celebrity design. But then I read his quote again in the context of the whole interview and realized: he is right, actually. In fact, his thoughts are so poignant and humbling that it … Read more
SAN FRANCISCO--This is not your big brother's Dungeons & Dragons.
On June 6, Wizards of the Coast will officially roll out the fourth edition of the D&D franchise, as well as a new suite of digital tools, and the world-famous game will never be the same.
And this time, it won't require the death of the game's inventor, Gary Gygax, to get D&D into the news.
I got a preview of what's new on Monday, and while I'm certainly no D&D expert, I'll try to spell out what … Read more
For all you PSP and Nintendo DS addicts, we're taking you back, way back in time. It's the year 1977, where disco rules and the interwebs is just a twinkle in Al Gore's eye--it may seem like a long time ago to some, and for others it may even supersede your existence. That year though, I can remember emptying my piggy bank and running down to Woolworths to make my first handheld game purchase: Mattel Football. A very simple game, and quite prehistoric when compared to the handheld games of today. It didn't have Wi-Fi, and … Read more
Maybe that price cut in Blu-ray players is coming sooner than we think because Digitimes is reporting that Sony has set some very ambitious goals for Blu-ray in 2008. And by ambitious I'm talking a 50-50 split with DVD.
The short article, which carries the headline, "Sony looks to 50% global market share for its Blu-ray products in 2008," says that "Sony will offer Blu-ray Disc (BD) devices in a wide range of product lines and prices and aims to increase the global market share of its BD products from 20 percent currently to 50 percent … Read more
Earlier this year, Radiohead singer Thom Yorke explained to the AP that the band was going to take concrete steps to minimize its contribution to global warming, including traveling by airplane only when necessary and using solar-powered generators. But the biggest contributor, by far, to the band's global carbon footprint are its fans, who drive by the millions to its shows every time Radiohead tours. Hence, Yorke said that the band would play only "in places that have municipal transport systems in place or that we can persuade promoters to put on transport."
Apparently this dictate doesn'… Read more
I just returned from a trip to Shanghai, and in case you didn't know anyway, here's my No. 1 insight: China scales.
Let's take QQ.com as an example, the leading Chinese online social network. The site is reported to have more than 300 million active accounts. That is eight times the member base of Facebook--and it's the same size as the U.S. population.
What's also remarkable (and different from the Western social networks) is QQ's monetization. Facebook posted revenue of $150 million for 2007 (and according to Plus8star a loss of $50 million); … Read more
Watch out, Hollywood. Here comes Microsoft.
At an event it called Digital Showcase, held Thursday in New York, the software giant told a group of ad execs that it is getting into the business of producing original Web shows for its wide range of Web platforms.
According to MediaWeek, Microsoft told the ad execs that the shows it is funding will be naturals for supporting online advertising.
The shows are slated to run on portals like MSN, Xbox Live, and MSNBC.com. Among the initial series are: 50 Greatest, which MediaWeek said is "a spoof of the multiple pop … Read more
We just posted the lastest edition of the Indie To Go playlists on Download Music! This iPod-friendly sampler of MP3s features topnotch indie newcomers and chart-toppers such as Tokyo Police Club, Colin Meloy (The Decemberists), The Raveonettes, The Explorers Club and more. Stream now (while you work), then visit the artist pages to download the songs to go. And if you want to hear more playlists like this one, check out Indie To Go Volumes 1 through 10.
It seems as if the hype over Iron Man has been going on forever, so we're surprised that it's taken this long for someone to release a phone dedicated to the movie. (Side note: Are we the only ones who think Robert Downey Jr. is totally miscast?)
Like other promotional movie phones, including Homer Simpson's cellie, this customized LG Shine will bear the colors of its hero and include exclusive footage from the film. The main difference is that this handset is finished in 18k gold (not iron) and will be given away in an online drawing, … Read more
Update (3:52 pm): This story got the name of the R.E.M. video wrong. It's fixed in the text below. Additionally, there's new comments from Improv Everywhere founder Charlie Todd below.
After reading Tuesday night on Laughing Squid that a new R.E.M. video had been posted by the band's publicity firm on YouTube that seemed to blatantly rip off Improv Everywhere's now-famous "freezes," I wrote to the culture jamming collective's founder to get his take.
"I did not know they were making this video and was not involved … Read more