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Re-Mission 2: Fighting cancer, The Video Game

Posted by admin on May 21, 2013 in news, random, technology

remission 2 the game cancer

A video game to help kids beat cancer –  what’s not to like?

Re-Mission 2 is a video-game for cancer patients and their families. It’s an interactive way to kick cancer nasties, score some points and basically demonstrate that joysticks do have a therapeutic benefit. It consists of six games, all which let you tackle different types of cancer, using familiar gaming tools such as bombs, guns and um, healthy blood cells. Available for MAC, PC and iPad, they’re free to play online, download and share.

A lot of data backs up the theory behind the games, a key emphasis being  the idea that positive motivation helps kids stick to a treatment regimen, as positivity lights up different parts of their brain (hey, they did brain imaging to prove this). There is even an argument that game players had higher levels of chemotherapy in the blood stream, suggesting a physiological as well as mental improvement.

The sincerity behind the premise of the game can’t be questioned. Re-Mission 2 is unreservedly pro-recovery, pro information and pro-control. I like the idea for many reasons. It’s great to make cancer patients- especially children- deal with their disease in a light hearted way, and the overpowering message here is that it just takes perseverance, time and aiming practice to beat it.

cancer fighter game

Problem is, not all cancers ARE curable and I’m a little concerned that this gives false hope to some who are living with a terminal cancer. It also – and I say this as a former cancer patient- feels slightly simplistic in some ways, as it’s cool to get to level 2 by killing the evil cells, but the reality was far more painful and needle heavy.  I totally get they want to encourage people, but it’s hard to play an animated game and feel it doesn’t trivialize the pain in some way. Yes, I realize it’s easy to say this without offering an alternative, but sometimes in the back slapping and ‘it’s so good they made this’ moment we forget that it’s not always the perfect fit. Read more…

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Outgrow.Me is a store for ALL Kickstarter success stories

Posted by admin on Mar 19, 2013 in news, random, technology

outgrow me kickstarter

It seems that everyone has a Kickstarter or crowdfunding program at the moment, and though you’ve heard of the big BIG success stories, what about all the people with smaller goals and mini-dreams? Sure, not every project gets funded, but many that reach fulfillment only asked for small sums to let them kickstart their idea. These are the guys that DON’T get massive media attention, and pretty much drop off the radar when they’re done.

Outgrow.me seeks to solve this problem- and yes, I realize it’s a problem you might not have know you had which makes it even more genius (or does it create the problem? Must ponder…).

Their website dedicated to highlighting fully funded projects POST Kickstarter.

What they offer is a one stop shop to sorting through funded projects, something that is mucho difficult on Kickstarter, and  lets you see what they’re up to now. Outgrow.me also syncs in data from other crowdfunding sites, including IndieGoGo.

You can support people you love, browse active ideas and buy actual real life stuff– it’s like Etsy but with added crowdsourcing kudos.

ostrich-pillow-2

A listed project: Ostrich Pillow– get a great power nap/ look weird – $99

It’s pretty cool to be be able to browse through  a range of interesting products and artwork, which in some small way you feel like you’ve helped create. Read more…

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Rabbit Festival Fashion Show in Japan

Posted by admin on Feb 13, 2013 in Animal Oddities, geekery, news, random, Strange events, style

Can somebunny share the love for Rabbit Fashion Week?

In recent years I’ve noticed a trend towards pet owners taking various animals and dressing them up in costumes. I just discovered the Japanese Rabbit Festival, an annual event where bunnies are dressed up in all types of couture and make their adorable flip floppy way down a rabbit runway, as part of a two day rabbit fiesta.

As far as I can ascertain (Google translate Japanese is a little hairy) each  Rabbit Festival follows a particular theme, and the bunnies are adorned to match. The festival is about more than just the rabbit fashion show, as there are hug a bunny workshops, video diaries of bunny activity and rabbit accessories to buy. People who visit can come WITH their own rabbit, and it sounds like a strange but sweet meetup.

schoolgirl rabbit

I’m not 100% sure but I also think there’s a bunny cosplay event going on as well; – though whether that’s for the owners of the pet or the animals I’m uncertain. Read more…

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Kitten Tail fashion: Mood sharing cat tails are big in Japan

Posted by admin on Dec 3, 2012 in Animal Oddities, geekery, random, style


Japan has been the originator  of many odd gadgets over the years;  think Hello Kitty shaped vibrators, talking toilet seats and robotic dolls that count calories for you.  I just found out about a new product that’s hitting the market there, and it’s in the same kooky vein that will make you roll your eyes and then go, ‘Well, maybe..’

Introducing the Shippo, the gelocated fluffy kitten tail designed to be worn in public to display your emotions (by waggling) and display your location (for the parents who aren’t happy you’re wagging your tail in public). If this sounds confusing, let me break it down for you.

The Shippo is a pin on tail that you attach to your behind, and syncs with a neural sensor that you place on your forehead. The neural sensor syncs with the tail and supposedly ‘activates’ it based on your emotions. The idea is that if you’re feeling happy/joyous/ embarrassed to be wearing a fluffy kitten tail in public that the tail will move in time with your neural brain waves. The tail has three settings, and  will wag slowly if you are relaxed and speed up as you get excited/frustrated/drunk.

There’s more to the Shippo tail than simply serving to create a scene wherever you go- the sensor that you wear also connects to the Shippo smartphone app, which will tag your location AND your mood to the places you visit.

I think it’s kind of interesting to see what places make the wearer feel happier and where you’re more likely to be stressed or flustered, and it’s a different way to map location;- emotional mapping, rather than physical images, so a story of your feelings in map form. OK, that’s getting a little existential, but you get the idea. Read more…

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The restaurant that gets rebuilt at every tide

Posted by admin on Nov 19, 2012 in random, travel

I love a little bit of quirkiness when it comes to dining out, and restaurants that fuse technology with fine dining are a particular favorite. However, this Koh Samui restaurant seriously makes my mind boggle with its particular premise. You can’t get more exclusive than a restaurant that is created from scratch daily for your personal use, and that’s just what the Thailand Napasai Resort does, combing and shaping the fine white sand into an alcove ready for your culinary pleasures. Each night the tide sweeps away this nook, and every morning it is built anew.

The alcove takes around four hours to create, which must make the staff feel *very* fulfilled, but hopefully this effort is reflected in the tip- with meals starting at around £115 / $140 for dinner. Dinner options include fresh sea food on the beach, and everyone gets a private butler to their sand crafted cubbyhole Sounds of waves crashing and seagulls are a bonus, ideally with late night revellers far in the distance…

I think it looks beautiful and would provide a very serene meal, but it makes me wince to think of the effort it takes the sand sculptors to keep rebuilding everyday- talk about monotony!.

I feel that I’ll have to try it to reserve judgement though.. one day!

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Human Hair Artwork for Adverts

Posted by admin on Oct 23, 2012 in beauty, random

Advertising is taken to a whole new level with these animal inspired hairstyles created by Mark Anthony Sumray. These hair designs were sculpted with the models natural hair and were created to promote Bench’s new range of hair styling products.

I’m not sure if someone looking at these intricate human hair sculptures of a gecko and a spider would immediately make one think, hey I wish I had a hairspray that wold let me recreate this, but these striking pictures do make you look, and thus achieve Bench’s first goal of gaining attention.

It’s an unusual choice of advert for Bench to run with, especially as Bench is a brand associated with fashion rather than beauty. I think Bench were probably trying to garner some new devotees with the Bench Fix line, tapping into the youth market aiming to be seen as edgy and stylish with these ads. The attention to detail is what grabs me, and I’m more intrigued in the process of creating the hairstyles than any information at all about the products.

It’s hard to decide whether I like the gecko or the spider best, but they do make me think of my all time favorite human hair artist Nagi Noda, who is well known for creating amazingly detailed hair sculptures. Her hair pieces looked like different animals- lions, tigers bears (oh my!) have taken up residence in the models hair and they’re made using real real human hair- simply wonderful to look at. Sadly Nagi Noda has passed away, but her legacy remains- captured forever in her striking images and unusual hair hats.

Check out some more of Nagi Noda’s work after the jump. Read more…

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Same Height Party Shoes puts you all on the same level

Posted by admin on Jun 7, 2012 in random, style

When talking to people it’s suggested you approach them at their level, which means shorter women teeter on heels and men crouch down awkwardly for a heartfelt one to one. Eye contact is constantly recommended as a way to assert yourself and bond with people, and artist Hans Hemmert seems to have taken this option and run with it.. into the realms of surreal territory! Welcome to Same Height Parties where guests pick footwear based on their height, and everyone stands at an even 2 metres.

This is a quirky way of addressing the notion of how first impressions are made, as any height related impressions are now read from the floor, rather than their head. Apart from the fact that venue spaces are going to need high ceilings and tables require stilts (so drinks can be reached), this idea has a lot of promise, and minimal props are needed to effect it. Read more…

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