FITC day 2

Steven | multimedia,Random Thoughts | Sunday, 01 March 2009

Still had to report from the second day of Flash in the Can Amsterdam. The report of the first day can be found here.

Highlight of the day was definitely Sakri’s session :)
No really, it was pretty good. He only rushed trough it a bit too fast, and was finished in 30 minutes. For me the timing was ok, but it’s kind of a bummer because he worked so hard on it. We’re still looking for other occasions where he can give this presentation, so if you now something let me know. Basically he wrote a framework for doing easy (yet cool) text effects in flash. He’s going to release it as soon as he finished off some stuff. You can read more about it at Sakri’s own blog.

Than the session that made most impression on me was the Mario Klingemann‘s one. He’s just a mathematician who happens to have an interest in flash. So this results in cool stuff. He started by dividing triangles until it became really arty. Then took the theory to the next phase and ending up with creating arty impressions based on pictures. Cool shit!

The rest of the sessions I attended were kind of inspirational.
Tools and Techniques at Nanika (by Andreas Muller) was interesting because it was actually about using flash and other techniques in a real world context. Like a fashion show, or a store. Lot’s of experiments and using flash in ways it hasn’t been used before.
Gmunk is doing cool stuff with 3D mostly and they showcased some projects. Although 3D isn’t really my thing it was pretty nice and inspiring.
And then there was the cool shit session where they showed off some stuff. Good formula: they had some speakers and a short amount of time, so they just had to keep themselves to the highlights, which worked out pretty good. I think such a session is something I want see on more conferences.

After the sessions we first had some Duvel with Keith Peters and some crazy Texan with a badass laptop the size of a desktop, and joined the Adobe VIP dinner later on. Thx Bert, great food!

Picture of Keith and Sakri having a Duvel, taken from Keith’s blog.

Here are some links you might wanna check out

  • Demofone, an application to stream your phones display to a web page. Just tested it, works fine
  • De Monsters. Were featured in the keynote. They’re building a project documentation tool and delivered some debugger for flash and flex.
  • Flash lite fund. I shouldn’t be sharing this, because we’re going to enroll ;) But this fund might be an extra push to start developing flash lite applications. By Adobe and Nokia.
  • Powerflasher. They promised a kick ass website coming up, so it better be good :) – If you speak German you can follow their blog.
  • Papervision blog. Get inspired by this framework that makes it possible to do 3D stuff in flash.
  • Hi-res. Keep an eye on their work! Also enjoy these classics, brings back memories!
  • Joshua Davis. Well, what can I say. He’s an artist using scripting. Fantastic work!
  • Sakri’s blog. Just do it! :|
  • Nanika, you’ll find lot’s of experiments here!
  • Quasimondo, aka Mario Klingemann’s blog.
  • Hobnox Audiotool (featured in the cool shit session) because it’s a fucking great audio tool that really shows what’s possible with flash. It’ll make all this expensive audio equipment superfluous.

I had fun! Hope to be there next year again!

Nokia N96: great phone, sucky battery!

Steven | multimedia,Random Thoughts | Sunday, 01 March 2009

image I love Nokia. Have been using it for years now, pretty loyal. I think they make great phones: good looking, functional, solid, right size, good OS ..
Anyway, I was thinking about the iphone, but I’m very glad I got myself a brand new N96 at the beginning of this year. It’s my best phone so far .. except for the battery, that’s just a pain in the ass :(

At first I thought something was wrong with my particular battery, but I did some research, and it’s a global problem. Nokia are you listening? Just Google “N96 battery” and you’ll see what’s going on.

In short, the battery just isn’t powerful enough! I’m no battery expert, but what I learned is that they used a 950 MAh battery, and this should be at least 1200 or even 1400 MAh.

The N96 product manager explained the early concerns by saying they used a smaller battery to keep the device small + the the device would work more efficient. They say it would be ok for most users, but perhaps not for heavy users. as you can see in this movie.

What? I guess if you buy a device like the N96 you might be considered a heavy user in the first place don’t you think? More efficient working: I don’t see this. The phone underperforms my previous N95 big time (which had a better battery). And sure, it might be optimized for music playback (in offline modus) but I guess this is not what is most important, at least not for me.

Then about the size, that’s absolutely bollocks as you can see in this video

What they did is use the 1200 MAh battery of the N78. This almost fits, is only just a bit to big. This can be easily fixed with a new back cover. The better solution would obviously be that it was designed the right way, or that they would create a 1200 or 1400 MAh battery that would actually fit. I’m sure this must be possible after seeing that video.

So to conclude: I still think the N96 is a fantastic phone, but I just can’t recommend it to you because of this limited battery live. If you use your phone somewhat more heavy (calls, wifi, bluetooth, gps, ..) it won’t survive the day. This is extremely annoying when traveling.

What I would like to see is Nokia responding to this. We as consumers (an brand lovers) can ask a solution from them I recon!? What can we do: well just make some noise about it, it’s the social media age remember. Blog about it like I did, put it on twitter, create some Google juice. I discovered a Facebook group called “Nokia N96 Owners needs a better battery from Nokia” what I joined. If you have a N96 yourselves I’d like you to join this group as well. It’s just another way to put some pressure. Let’s see if Nokia is listening, and picking this up. Let’s see if they are serious about this, and respond to us. Let’s see if they treat us with the respect we deserve.

It’s an experiment. But it’s a demand as well.

FITC and the mysterious software drop

Steven | multimedia,Random Thoughts | Tuesday, 24 February 2009

I’m attending FITC (Flash in the Can) Amsterdam, well as we speak. In fact I’m sitting in the hotel room catching up some work, while Sakri (my brilliant colleague) is finishing his presentation he has to bring first thing tomorrow. He has spent an awful amount of time on it, and it’s going to be great! His talk is about cool text effects in AS3 and if you know any more events he could bring this talk let me know. It would definitely payoff the work put in it.

Anyway, this morning in the keynote session we were teased by Lee Brimelow to attend a little competition he has set up. You should extract some coordinates from an image and take it from there. I just found out the competition ended, and you should just read here how it went. I love this kind of searches, great story!

My highlights of day 1 FITC.

imageFeed the expert by Carlo Blatz. Carlo is founder of powerflasher, a German based flash studio. I found it particularly interesting because powerflasher and Nascom (the company I work for) kind of started from the same food, and heading in the same direction. However, powerflasher seems to be transformed a bit further so far, and I think we can learn from each other. Starting from an interactive production house and transforming to this + on top product development (they developed FDT, well known in the industry) + building out a decent and innovative lab. The session was just about this and how to stimulate creativity throughout the company.

imageEverything was beautiful and nothing hurt by Florian Schmitt of Hi-Res. They have such an inspiring portfolio. You might remember early work as Requiem for a Dream and Donnie Darko. I loved this sites the minute they came out, and still love them now. Or what about more recent work as the Nokia E71 experience site! They just keep experimenting and inventing themselves over and over.
(Yes, the title of the presentation is a Vonnegut quote!)

imageThen last but not least, there was the man himself: Joshua Davis! If you don’t know him: he’s a graphical artist using a lot of programming to create his work. It’s about randomness, but using patters at the same time. Lot’s of cool colors and repetition. He’s just making lovely stuff and having a lot of fun doing so. Add to that that he’s a fantastic speaker, and you understand the room was packed floor to ceiling. You might think he’s just lazy: let the code do his work, and that’s probably true to some degree. On the other hand, he’s adapting his code that way so he can export the vectors and tweak them manually: a hell of a job. Let’s just say he’s a smart guy and has a great sense of taste! This was my favorite session so far, and by the look of the audience, I wasn’t alone :)

image image

Nokia viNe

Steven | multimedia,Random Thoughts | Wednesday, 12 November 2008

Nokia viNe is going to be released This week, according to the website. It’s a very cool app (I did some beta tests) and I’m pleased it’s going to be out there. I’m curious about the amount of data that will be captured and the way it will be shared.

To learn what Nokia viNe is, watch this movie :)

I live to code

Steven | marketing, advertising & campaigns,multimedia | Sunday, 09 November 2008

My attention was drawn to this little video

I was asked to post this, more about that here.

It shows a Microsoft Surface developer explaining some stuff he’s done, not too technical but quite passionate and understandable.
Well I absolutely love Surface and I’m quite fascinated every time I see it working on roadshows and stuff (last time on FOWA). I think it’s a truly innovative product, taking into account what technology can do for the user, and not for the sake of technology, so that’s great. In my mind, one of the best ways to innovate is this road: think about how good something could be, and then take little steps to make it happen, until it’s there.

At the end of the video you’ll find a link to It’s a quite, well, dry website containing a bunch of links to similar video’s on youTube, and other project pages. It’s a Microsoft driven .. campaign (I guess I shall call it a campaign). They’re not trying to hide their identity, it’s there. You can participate yourself by mailing to a Microsoft email address and yes they even pay me indirectly to post the video.
I kind of like the approach, and see where this is going. They try to gain credibility to have developers explain in their words what they are doing and what it means for them. Microsoft is the company providing the tools, and yes they get criticized a lot, but on the other hand you have all these developers who just do what they love. And in the end that’s what its’ about. I try to avoid holy “what technology is better” wars myself. If you use what you love you’ll end up doing cooler things.

Here’s something from the ethos

“It’s about solving problems, not cutting corners. It’s about finishing what you started. It’s the reason you’re not the only one working until 2 a.m. It’s the common bonds and universal truths shared by developers, regardless of their platform. This is Live to Code.”

Nuff said.

The only thing I’d like to see now is someone new, applying to the program with his/her project, and getting picked up. Al though it feels genuine to me this would prove the case it’s not clearly selected marketing talk, but an idea opened up (although initiated by Microsoft). Case 1 might be just good thinking, case 2 is definitely smart!
So if you got something, or know someone .. let me know.

Could I be Charlie?

Steven | marketing, advertising & campaigns,multimedia | Saturday, 20 September 2008

I was wondering why Ryan Carson was dressed like like Willy Wonka on twitter the other day, and now I know. He IS Willy Wonka, handing out a golden ticket to all Carsonified events next year. Read abut it here.

To make me Charlie, i need your help. To qualify I need 25 comments on this blog post! So bring it on.

What an excellent marketing technique! It’s totally in place, right target group, right execution .. love it! It’s not cheap, it’s right.

The Carsonified events are probably better known under the name “Future of ..” like Future of Web Aps (FOWA), Future of Web Design (FOWD), Future of Mobile (FOW) .. see them all on the website.
As for me, I’m attending FOWA in London in a few weeks together with my buddy Stijn (who’s applying for Charlie as well). Some excellent speakers, including Mark Zuckerberg and Kevin Rose (!!!).

The Evolution of Mobile Phones

Steven | multimedia | Wednesday, 28 May 2008

My email to Steve Balmer

Steven | multimedia,Random Thoughts | Monday, 12 May 2008

I had the opportunity to see Steve Balmer perform live on stage twice the last couple of months. First at MIX08 in Vegas in March, and last month at the Mix essentials conference in Belgium. I enjoyed both times. Some good entertainment, some good business insights. He knows his stuff and best of all, he’s very passionate about it!

One of the new things Steve Balmer does is shout his email address all over the place. Proving the new and more open Microsoft. Interesting, and that’s what I checked out. So I sent him an email, and got a response!


At Mix again

Steven | multimedia | Wednesday, 05 March 2008

Like last year, I’m attending the MIX conference this week in Las Vegas, on invitation by Microsoft.
We arrived Monday, had a pre conference day yesterday, and today the real conference kicks off.

We’ll start with a keynote soon. Looks exited. I’ll try to update on twitter.

Funny video they showed at the pre conference yesterday. Not made my Microsoft though :)

Spam of the day

Steven | multimedia,Random Thoughts,twitter | Wednesday, 13 February 2008

I started together with Bruno de Regge, appreciated colleague, a new twitter account called spamoftheday. We select the best / funnies / most absurd / .. messages from our inboxes and post it there.1559606_340_1116081430036-spam

So if you like messages as “Remember how tight virgins feel? You can replicate that feeling by making yourself thicker and longer.” or “I heard John had to stop taking those capsules because he became too large, and his girlfriend complained it hurt” .. feel free to follow us.