Monthly Archives: April 2017

Google Tilt Brush gets a new sharing platform & more

Good stuff:

Google’s VR paint experience Tilt Brush just got a hefty update with a slew of new features that let users tweak the environment for more dynamic lighting and color options. But even more exciting: The community is getting its own social website where they can upload their art for others to download and remix themselves.

Check it out:


New DJI goggles offer head-controlled drone flight

Yes, these things are a $499 (!) behemoth, but damn if they don’t seem kinda wonderful:

PetaPixel writes,

[T[he goggles aren’t just about showing you a FPV from your drone cam, they also turn your head into a motion control unit, adjusting the drone’s yaw and camera tilt as you look around. The combined experience is incredibly immersive…

In addition to letting you ride along “in the cockpit” as it were, the goggles also allow you to control the camera—set focus, take pictures, or start and stop recording. And if you use DJI’s newest intelligent Fixed-Wing Mode—”the aircraft doesn’t turn left or right but instead flies forward with enough rotational movement for realistic flight simulation”—you can let the drone do the flying while you look around, enjoy the view, and take pictures.



Google’s new Jump camera debuts; apply now to use it for free

This monster features 17 4k cameras (!) backed by cloud compute:

Footage from those cameras runs through the Jump Assembler, which uses sophisticated computer vision algorithms and the computing power of Google’s data centers to create 3D 360 video. Amazing VR videos have been made with Jump, such as The New York Times’ Great Performers collection, Within’s “The Possible” series, the NFL Immersed series, and Wevr’s “Internet Surfer” video.


 Google is looking to sponsor 100 filmmakers (you?) to use it to make epic stuff:

Jump Start gives selected filmmakers both free access to a Jump camera and free unlimited use of the Jump Assembler for their VR film. Over the next year, the program will give over 100 creators these tools and enable them to make their vision a reality. Applications to Jump Start open today, and filmmakers have until May 22nd to apply.


PYOP (Print Your Own Pancakes) with PancakeBot 2.0

New life goal: Use this thing to print a drawing of Centrifugal Bumble-Puppy, causing Aldous Huxley to explode in his grave:

PancakeBot 2.0 is the the next generation PancakeBot with the ability to change the printing speed, included SD card, and added improvements to simplify user experience. The PancakeBot 2.0 lets kids and adults express their creativity through food while exploring technology.

Yeah, but can it squeeze out sacks of fruit juice…?



Be the user

i.e., Don’t build me some wishy-washy bullshit

“How come the Mac group produced Mac and the people at IBM produced the PCjr? We think the Mac will sell zillions, but we didn’t build Mac for anybody else. We built it for ourselves. We were the group of people who were going to judge whether it was great or not. We weren’t going to go out and do market research. We just wanted to build the best thing we could build.” — Steve Jobs, 1985

I know, I know: “You are not the user,” and “The truth is outside the building.” But as I counseled teammates today, if [productivity product X] isn’t addressing your personal, specific, Googler needs, figure out why & fix it. Pick a personal destination that’ll make you happier & more productive at work, then laser-burn your way to it.

That is a critical user journey.


Instagram finally adds collections

I’ve been expecting this one for years:

Tap and hold the bookmark icon underneath any post to save it directly to a collection. You can create and name a new collection when you save a post, or you can add it to one you’ve already created. 

Instagram continues to redefine creativity—away from strictly posting a few best shots, and towards:

  1. tossed-off ephemera (stories) and
  2. curation (a la Pinterest—drag the shiny-shiny back to decorate your cave).

This is going to be a license to print money: Let Kylie Jenner (or mouth-breathing celebretroid of one’s choice) create collections of merchandise that hang off the main profile & enable instant purchasing. Hopefully it’ll also benefit individual photographers, by offering a crazy-simple way to buy prints. Stay tuned.