Monthly Archives: April 2020

Open-source AR face doodling, right in your browser

Back when I was pitching myself for the job I somehow got in Google AI’s Perception group, I talked a lot about democratizing access to perceptive tech to enable permissionless innovation. Not that I can take any credit for it, but I love seeing more of the vision become reality through tech the team has built:

Yes, you can buy a Lego Joe Exotic

“Not the hero you want, need, or deserve. But here we are.⁠” 🐯😌

Are you a gun-wielding former presidential candidate tiger dealership owner willing to stop at nothing to smite your enemies? No? Good. We are full-up on those at the moment.

Get the perfect avatar for the hot mess that is 2020 – the Tiger Enthusiast! Not the hero we want, need, or deserve. But here we are.

Features a (surprisingly affordable) baby tiger cub and hand-injection molded mullet!

A lovely “Social Distance”

I imagine you’re as fatigued by all this stuff as I am—but honestly this piece is really touching & beautifully composed.

Spanning more than 30 countries, the film includes a breadth of perspectives, from a 93-year old Malayan grandmother to a 19-year old Slovenian man, and includes an original score that was remotely performed by musicians from around the world.


An amazing feat, told with the help of Google Earth

Honestly I never knew my old friend Wes Plate, a former Adobe video PM, to be terribly athletic—but man was I mistaken. Turns out he’s been killing it (thankfully not literally) in ultramarathons. I love the way he used Google Earth Studio to generate cinematic interstitials that help tell the story of him taking on last year’s Moab 240:

Here’s the full-length story if you’re interested:

A super creative Zoom call as music video

I’m reminded of really clever OKGO vids of yore. Colossal writes,

Nguyen recently told The Verge that the band rehearsed for five hours before taking a day to film the entire piece. Equipped with strong wifi connections, the group utilized a metronome before beginning to ensure they were all on the same beat. “Certain dance moves had to be adjusted to look good in Zoom’s gallery view and didn’t translate if they were too chaotic. We found that the moves had to be really clean and clear and simple. I had to be the focal point and if too much was happening you wouldn’t know exactly where to look,” she said.

BBC brings Sir David Attenborough & 200 other teachers home to kids

I love to see people & orgs continuing to step up like this:

The BBC has set up a segment, Bitesize Daily, for children to continue learning during the coronavirus lockdown. It will include over 200 teachers, including celebrities, who will provide educational content to kids in the UK. The BBC teamed up with teachers and education specialists to come up with this 14-week program.

Sir David Attenborough will step in as a virtual teacher, covering the world map, oceans and animals in the wildlife in his lessons.

Netflix puts dozens of educational programs on YouTube for free

“Y’know… for kids!” Kottke writes,

With schools not in sessions due to the Covid-19 pandemic, Netflix has decided to put some of their educational programming on YouTube for free (full playlist here). For instance, they’ve put all 8 episodes of David Attenborough’s nature series Our Planet online in their entirety. Here’s the first episode:

In addition,

Eight full episodes of the first season of Abstract: The Art of Design are also available on YouTube (discussion guide). Here’s the episode featuring illustrator Christoph Niemann: