I need more Mimobots. I’m pretty sure of that now. Because while i love my USB keys and toys as much as the next guy… (ok fine maybe a little more)… exploring the data inside Ramona has hooked the artsy McCarty fan in me. What the other sites never conveyed to me well enough was that each Mimobot is a mini multifaceted piece of art … gorgeous toy on the outside, usb key on the inside, and dig deeper and, in the Ginchy Series, you have a flash site to explore with a photo album of so many breathtaking photographs by McCarty of the trio around old school LA landmarks… with a great soundtrack by Phofo (their theme song and one song for each of the characters) to listen to on that vector ipod while you flip through… as well as 4 previews to make you crave the other Mimoco Mimobots as well. So see below for more images of what you’ll get when you adopt your Mimobot.
The majority of USB keys are oh so boring… So why bother with those, when you can show some character ~ AND hold your data? I’ve been seeing Mimobots around the internet for a while now and loved them, but fell for them far more when i checked the whole line out in person while at Digital Life! (where you may have heard about their Darth Vader Mimobot announcement!) Evan and Nicole were even nice enough to give me Ramona #100 out of 500 to play with, and she was a life saver during the show when i needed to mess with file transfers.
Ramona is one of three in the Ginchy Series, designed by Lili Chin (co-creator and producer of the hit Mexican Wrestling cartoon series “¡Mucha Lucha!”). But what really sucked me in was the accompanying photography for this series by Brian McCarty (see the old NOTCOT post about McCarty) - “renowned toy photographer and director/producer provides an extra-special cargo load for the series with his quirky photo albums of the Ginchy friends’ Los Angeles adventures, set to a soundtrack by Phofo.” See some of the great images of the rest of the Ginchy line in their rockabilly LA portraits below, as well as the invite to the Launch Party for the line over at Munky King this weekend!
While at Digital Life last weekend, one of the unexpected outstanding finds was definitely Blurb.com. I like their branding. The logo is cute. And their website is warm and inviting as far as the colors and site design go, or maybe its the combo of the with the picture of that photographer in the woods. Also they create their own language with the introduction of Blurbarians and the Blurberati. And their booth in the midst of all the over tech’d out gamer booths was a breath of fresh air (bookshelf facade and all). While at the booth, checked out their software (just played with it again, and its got a nice simple yet powerful UI) ~ as well as a sample of their books, and the print quality is exceptional, and a great affordable way for creatives to print/show portfolios.
Their service takes what the Apple iPhoto book printing only dreams to~ improves upon it and makes it more accessible to PC users as well. In a nutshell, they just put the power of having a publishing house at your fingertips - you can customize every page, filled with color images - and receive a 30 page glossy hardcover book for a mere 30$… and the book really is beautiful, cheaper than many portfolios, and makes incredible gifts. In addition to being able to design it death ~ their software also includes various pre-made templates, so even your grandmother could tackle the book publishing business. And coming soon for bloggers - publish your blog into a book at the touch of a button. Blurb.com
[p.s. they didn’t pay me for this one - i just kind of fell for them]
Ms. Dewey is somewhere between terribly annoying - and gorgeously amusing. The quality of her search engine and her living in your monitor pacing, doing her world take over evil laugh, tapping and harassing you to type things, and telling you she knew you’d type that… is bizarre to say the least. But worth checking out. But i must admit - i kept watching her pace and chat with me, and then i got a little sad when she started looping her vid sequences… it’s all so very sci-fi channel sleek and trippy.
I have new found respect for booth babes. How do they stand that long in heels? Really. Even in flats. Standing in general. Spewing happiness to press and consumers alike? Seriously. Wow. And it’s only been one day… I’ve never really been on this side of a trade show before - craziness. Haven’t stopped since i got on that plane at 6am in LA, which feels like days ago.
So here is my round up - unedited pictures thrown together below to give you the most honest feel of what Digital Life seems to have to offer (unless you’re a diehard gamer, then you should just come for yourself and sit and play game after game - or sing karaoke on a few stages). So i’m here with ThisNext - people are obsessing about the Shawnimals’ Wee Ninjas we’re raffling away with a bunch of other top recommended picks… then other show worthy mentions (pics below) are Blurb, Mimobots! (which we’ve already loved for so long, but finally met them in person), Palm’s Treo 680, Namco’s old school gone mobile, Sony’s Mylo and ebook, and the etchamac.
So it’s been iPod day here at NOTCOT, three great cases found their way here this week, and i was impressed enough that i saved them to show you all at once. You’ve seen the thorough reviews of the Brenthaven Flip Case, Podstar Diablo Darkside, and the Vaja i-volution Case… but how do they compare?
In my opinion, and after some serious ipod case shopping, there are a LOT out there, and only few that truly stand out in terms of design, quality, functionality and packaging. These three all have a bit of character and stood out above the rest. Together i feel they show you three personalities of my ipod, ok or i shouldn’t project onto my technology… they perfectly represent my various moods when using my ipod. My final conclusions? See below.
And if you beg to differ, or have better options to offer, feel free to comment.
Vaja has been earning quite the reputation around the internet the last year or so for being THE cases to have for phones, laptops, psps, ipods, etc. (and now they even have messenger bags!). This Argentinean company really knows how to take molded leather to the next level, and the number of pantone colors they offer, wow. I’ll put it out there, that when i was browsing their site, i wasn’t sure what to make of their i-volution ipod case, that bump on the back turned me off… But they were kind enough to send one over anyhow, in this gorgeous red… and that bump while still thickening the overall size slightly, manages to give it a “leather suit” that is more protective than most others. I’m also in love with their packaging… this is one company that you will never have to question their dedication to quality and design… look at the way they present their products!?!?! Gorgeous box - in a sleeve - beautiful logo and subtle gloss on matte repeated Vaja texture. The feel and color of the case really blew me away when i opened the box… the buttons on the back hold it very securely, and they also include protectors for front and back which are thin clear pieces of flexible plastic. One thing is that you have no hold button access, but otherwise its a gorgeously luxurious leather “suit” for your ipod. Many pictures from all angles below.
I’ve had a crush on the Malaysian brand Podstar since they launched (see old post)… so i’m just glowing that the product has surpassed my high expectations. So here is my iPod dressed in its Diablo Darkside…. the baseball card like bio for him says he’s age:30, and ex-con/costumed defender of justic, likes: spike lee and wu tang, and dislikes: corruption. But seriously, i thought it would be like my old iskin cases… silicon - does it’s job, thats all…. well Podstar’s cases, are incredibly high quality to the touch, and absolutely love the horns (and the earing is removable!) and the TAIL! Gorgeous design, well executed, fun packaging, nice website. Nice touch is that they have a flap to protect the port on the bottom as well. So on my more devious days, you’ll find my ipod in this. Lots of images below. Also, new limited edition angelically devilish white series available now.
I used to have an iPod 3gen before i finally caved and got the new 80 gig video… so when i first saw the Brenthaven case, i must admit i was curious, why would i REALLY need a replacement dock/case duo? But then, like so many other things you don’t realize you NEED until after you try it, i got hooked. Imagine you’re crammed on a plane, or just sitting at your desk at work, it IS kind of nice to be able to pull it out of its case, and have it at the perfect angle for close quarters movie watching, or to see what’s playing while at your desk. So while i never needed this brilliant multipurpose case, now i can’t live without it. Also the leather is great quality, and the brown and baby blue combo is one of my favorite color palettes. Fits like a glove… a very perfectly fitting glove… that’s lined with baby blue suede so nothing gets scratched up. Flip Case by Brenthaven… More close up images below…
Hot pink looks better on Hulger than it does on Barbie. I was surprised these guys manage to pull of a hot pink email newsletter that is nearly painful… yet a pleasure to browse/read. Anyhow, i’ve been in love with the images of their products for a while, perhaps someday i’ll actually play with one. From bluetooth to corded headsets, these great vintage phone designs even have bases for your old school skypeing/treoing. And the bluetooth models just got upgraded with bluetooth 2.0~
I indulged myself with the massive issue of Vogue Italia in hopes of escaping my web 2.0, social networking, california based craziness that has been quickly taking over my life… after doing some serious NOTCOT house cleaning till 8am (read: fixed .org atom feed, cleaned up all .com rss/atom, fixed .com search, added features to .org, finished emails, and a ton more)… all i wanted was a little break from the web. Just some good old fashioned, relatively shallow product/fashion obsession and drooling over accessorizing as an art form.
So imagine my surprise when in the midst of Vogue Italia, i find myself reading about how “Il web sta cambiando… Gli user-generated sites stanno decisamente rivoluzionando la rete.” and see giant myspace, flickr, and craigslist facing me. TOM made it into VOGUE. Maybe its not the web thats changing, but Vogue sta cambiando. Also this is by far one of my favorite Vogue covers to date, the image of that model at the gun range… those pumps amidst the shells… and LOVE the font… and how that orange picks up on the glasses of the guy in the next stall, and the target on the ground. Closeups below… token Diesel Sweeties to make you giggle too.
More big brand mashups - this time we have the high end Versace meets Lamborghini, to give us the Murcielago LP640 Versace Edition. While the white seats may be utterly impractical ~ i must admit i’m loving the mod black and white feel they have going on. Paris Auto Show got all the good sporty releases this year! via Sybarites, who has quite a few high res pics.
Most sinister sports car i’ve laid eyes on… it’s those swarovski looking false eyelashes on the headlights look isn’t it? and those wolverine claws coming out of the trunk that does it? You know, imagine you’re watching transformers or some animated feature, you would see this and KNOW it was either the villian, or the vehicle of the villain… the very deviously genius villain. So here we have the freshly announced in Paris, 2008 Audi R8. Gorgeously evil. Wicked fast. Fun images and schematics below. Watch videos of it in action at Left Lane News.
September’s SEED magazine (possibly one of the most gorgeous non design mags out there to grace my mailbox) ~ has an article titled “You Look Around: A Visual Exploration of Complex Networks” featuring some mind blowing visualizations of amino acid sequence alignments, visual correlations of spatial awareness, and this one which intrigued me the most… Above (full image and more below) you see the relationships in the del.icio.us network. “It employs simple algorithms that recommend items of personal note to the user, and demonstrates the operation of interest and influence within an online community - in this instance, between a group of eight participants.” Created by Ian Timourian, Mandalabrot.net, San Francisco. See more in depth graphs and explanations at del.icio.us project.
Possibly the most brilliant business card i have seen to date. [Thanks Craig!]… and apparently they are functional picks… Would love to get my hands on one to see how the tension wrench works (bending it yourself and all). Designed by Jeni Mattson.