RaaD Movies, News and Technology

Dany's RaaD Roundup

Apple’s New Toys for the 2010 Holliday Season

Steve Jobs made quite a few announcements about newer smaller  iPod shuffles, iPod nanos, iPod touches, a new iTunes and a new Apple TV along with many more updates on September 1st. You can watch the whole 90min conference here (subscribe to their keynote podcast here) including a performance at the end from the lead of Coldplay, Chris Martin. You can watch the musical performance here:

Of all the announcements, I thought the most interesting were the new social network Ping that is built into the new iTunes store, also accessible on the iPad, iPhone and iPod touch. They made a big deal about having over 160 million customers already with access to the store itself who now have access to this music social network. Considering that you’ll now be able to follow your favorite artists and friends, get local concert information, post videos, music and photos and get customized music suggestions based on who you follow, the facebooks, myspaces and twitters of the world should be wary, especially since Apple has a clear business model already tied into this network since it’s another way to open up people to new songs, albums and artists. It’s only a matter of time before this expands to include TV shows and movies. Facebook’s 500+ million worldwide active users still seems to top the charts, but I’m guessing Mark Zuckerberg‘s ears perked up when he heard this news.

The other interesting story from the conference I felt was the new Apple TV. Jobs admitted that since 2006, when the original Apple TV launched it wasn’t the biggest hit, but now they have added a lot of new features to integrate it with all the other products, with the ability to stream content (movies, TV shows and photos) from their computers, iPads, iPhones and iPod touches.  They added Netflix streaming support for Netflix subscribers along with TV show and movie rentals ranging from 99cents up to $4.99 for new movies being released on the same date as their dvd, there is also the ability to listen to and watch all the podcasts you subscribe to, which brings online content almost onto an equal playing field as movies and TV shows for access to your HD TV. The new Apple TV box is a lot smaller than before (the box almost fits in the palm of Steve Jobs’ hand),  probably because there’s no storage space on the device (everything works via streaming internet), the menu system seems easy to use. You’ll need a TV with an HDMI port since that’s the only output port, but it has built in WiFi and an Ethernet port for faster connections. I think with the new $99 price point for the Apple TV, they will basically put Roku‘s streaming box and anyone else like them right out of the market.

The photographer in me was very impressed with the demo of the new camera feature that was added to the iPod touch camera, high dynamic range (HDR) option. Using this, you can take a picture in bright light and the camera will take 3 quick pictures in succession, one at normal exposure, another underexposed one to bring out the colors from a bright sky and a third picture that is overexposed to bring out the dark sections of the picture and then blending the three pictures together to have a final photo with an enormous dynamic range of color and detail in the shot. Here is one example Apple has up on their site:

and here is an example that the great folks at AppleInsider created with their iPod touch with the original on the left and the HDR image on the right:

Thanks to Apple and AppleInsider for the above pictures. Also, if you want to see some professional HDR images from higher-end cameras check out this Flickr page and SmashingMagazine.



September 2, 2010 9:26 pm Posted by | apple, art, clips, HD, movies, music, music videos, photography, podcasts, software, technology, tv | 2 Comments

Happy Flaming Fruitcake with Systm

Today is the first day of the new season. Here in the northern hemisphere, that means it’s the first day of winter and here in NYC we already have some snow on the ground. This means the holiday season is upon us. Whether you celebrate Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, the Solstice or anything or nothing in between, we’ve all experienced the magic and fear of the everlasting fruitcake.

Watch as the Systm (subscribe here) crew finds some very creative ways to handle fruitcake this holiday season (watch it here in HD). Let’s just say that fire and firearms might be involved…



December 21, 2008 5:26 pm Posted by | clips, food, guns, HD, New York, NYC, podcasts, science | Leave a comment

Democratic National Convention Goes High Tech

Throughout this week, the Democratic National Convention is going on in Denver (catch the live HD feed here), but for all those people who are too busy to catch the speeches and spectacle live, their official website is presenting all the video on demand in HD, you can even subscribe here to their feed to get all the updated videos as they’re released or just check out their video gallery here.

Just check out Ted Kennedy‘s speech from earlier in the week to get an idea of the quality here. I just hope the Republican National Convention coming up is as technologically savvy!

Thanks to Minnesota Public Radio for the above pic.



August 27, 2008 7:23 pm Posted by | clips, HD, politics, technology, tv | Leave a comment

Sebastian’s Voodoo – 3D Animation

I love finding interesting short films, especially those made by enthusiasts. This short is called Sebastian’s Voodoo and was created by Joaquin Baldwin and scored by Nick Favola at the UCLA Animation Workshop. I found this video because of Boing Boing TV (subscribe here).

Watch as a brave voodoo doll tries to save its fellow voodoo dolls from harm. If you can, try and check out the high quality version to get a feel for some of the amazing detail work that went into this!

Enjoy a visually stunning 4 minutes created using Maya and After Effects.


June 13, 2008 7:53 pm Posted by | art, cartoons, clips, college, HD, movie reviews, movies, podcasts, technology, toons | Leave a comment

Rwandan Success Stories

Normally the news I hear coming out of Africa, especially in places like Rwanda has been terribly depressing, whether its being forgotten about by the western world, disease or ethnic strife.

Well, after finally finding some positive and uplifting news being reported by Washington Post, I figured I HAD to share (subscribe to Washington Post HD video stories here).

This is a video (watch the HD version here) shining a light on some success stories coming out of Rwanda, highlighting the positive role women have played in the emergence of business (especially in coffee exports) after the horrific genocide that the country went through during the 1990’s.

Thanks to Wooden Bike Coffee for the above pic.



May 24, 2008 11:29 am Posted by | clips, HD, podcasts | Leave a comment

Conan O’Brien Brings Gary Vaynerchuk of Wine Library TV onto Late Night

I may be a bit late to the party, but I just started watching Gary Vaynerchuk‘s Wine Library TV (subscribe here), sure I missed the first 450 episodes, but better late than never, right? My only excuse is that I really don’t like wine, but after seeing him interviewed on a recent episode of Internet Superstar (subscribe here or get the HD version), I realized how entertaining and smart he was and I knew that it didn’t matter what I thought about wine, I NEEDED to be watching his show.

From that Internet Superstar interview, I learned that Gary had been invited onto Late Night with Conan O’Brien and I found this clip of his appearance and this SOLIDIFIED that watching Wine Library TV was a must.



Also, after deciding to write this up, I found that Gary made an appearance on the Ellen Degeneres show, now she wasn’t as adventerous and crazy as Conan, but I have that clip below.

April 28, 2008 4:03 pm Posted by | clips, food, HD, podcasts, tv, wine | Leave a comment

Diggnation Read My Email

Last week, after watching Diggnation episode 146, I emailed Alex to help him out with a Simpsons reference that he couldn’t remember the origin of and during the next episode, I was surprised to hear that the viewer email they chose to read off on air was the one I sent in.

I thought that it was very cool and HAD to mention it here. I’ve said it many times, but if you aren’t already, subscribe to their weekly video here or get the HD version here.


April 26, 2008 10:02 am Posted by | HD, podcasts, technology | Leave a comment

Revision3 Crew Lip Syncs INXS

During some free time over at the Internet TV Revision3 studios, a wide array of nutty Rev3 employees teamed up to group lip dub/sync the INXS song Need You Tonight.

Check the video out here from Vimeo, hopefully soon WordPress.com will allow sites to embed more sources (like Vimeo, which supports HD video), if not all sources of flash video onto their hosted pages.

Vodpod videos no longer available.

Thanks to Diggnation (subscribe here) for bringing this video to light and to the cute as a button Sara Lane, the above pic cam from her own site.



April 21, 2008 12:26 am Posted by | clips, crazy celebs, HD, music, music videos, podcasts, tv | Leave a comment

Movie Trailer Sunday – Serial Killers and Al Pacino

The first trailer that caught my eye is for the upcoming Willem Dafoe movie where he’s hunting down a serial killer, Anamorph.

Another serial killer movie, this time starring Al Pacino is 88 Minutes, apparently the film was released worldwide over a year ago, but we’ll get to see it on April 18th (get the HD trailer here from Yahoo Trailers).

Lastly, we have Righteous Kill, which is only the 3rd movie starring both Al Pacino and Robert De Niro (Godfather II and Heat) and only the second with the two acting together on screen (Heat). I don’t know how good it will be, but just having the two on screen together gets me interested in seeing it (get the HD trailer here from Apple Trailers).



April 6, 2008 7:02 pm Posted by | apple, clips, HD, movies | Leave a comment

Bunny Situation and Elephant’s Dream Short Films, No Pixar Here!

After watching the latest Digg Reel, I had to share this animated short film created by Michael Sormann (sormann3d).

Get the highest quality versions here (.wmv version, .mov version), which is really the BEST way to watch this.

Thanks to The Digg Reel for promoting the film so I could find it. I wish I knew how to use programs like Autodesk Maya after watching this film, at least I’m not too lazy to watch the movie!

This next short film is Elephant’s Dream. Leo Laporte and Randal Schwartz interviewed the creators on FLOSS Weekly. Get the HD discs or the HD downloads here (there are just too many mirrors and different versions to direct link to, I counted over 30 different versions last time I visited! I LOVE open source)

Unlike the first short, this creepy movie was mainly created using the open source 3D rendering program, Blender.


March 9, 2008 2:04 am Posted by | clips, HD, movie reviews, movies, podcasts, software, technology | 1 Comment