Archive for April 7th, 2011

April 7, 2011

Criterion Collection

The Criterion Collection is a video-distribution company selling ‘important classic and contemporary films’ to cinema aficionados founded in 1984. Criterion Collection releases were the first to provide several features that have become standard.

The 1984 Criterion Laserdisc release of King Kong included the world’s first optional commentary audio track. The Criterion series is noted for helping to standardize the letterbox ratio, bonus features, and special editions. They are also known for taking great lengths to restore and clean all movies released on their label.

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April 7, 2011

Odd Future

wolf gang

Odd Future Wolf Gang Kill Them All, often abbreviated OFWGKTA or Odd Future, are a hip hop collective from Los Angeles, California. They have released three mixtapes and nine studio albums, all available for free on their website. Rapper/producer Tyler the Creator is the de facto leader of Odd Future. Other members include rappers Hodgy Beats, Earl Sweatshirt, Domo Genesis, Mike G, singer Frank Ocean, producers Left Brain, Syd Bennett, Matt Martians, Hal Williams and Jasper Dolphin.

As of February 2011, their ages range from 16 to 23 years old. There are three groups inside the collective: MellowHype, The Jet Age of Tomorrow and EarlWolf. MellowHype consists of rapper Hodgy Beats and producer Left Brain, The Jet Age of Tomorrow consists of producers Matt Martians and Hal Williams and EarlWolf consists of Tyler, the Creator and Earl Sweatshirt.

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April 7, 2011

Wave Disk Engine

wave disk engine

A wave-disk engine is an innovative internal combustion engine design being worked on by teams at Michigan State University and Warsaw Institute of Technology led by Norbert Müller. The first prototype was demonstrated in March 2011. The wave-disk engine has no valves, pistons or gear trains but utilizes a rotating disk to produce shock waves that compress an air fuel mixture. As the burning mixture expands it pushes against curved blades set into the rotor disk causing it to spin. The turning of the disk itself opens and closes inlet and outlet ports at appropriate times to introduce the air/fuel mixture and exhaust the combustion products.

It potentially shows savings in weight and better energy efficincy compared to normal internal combustion engine designs. Combustion engines are not very efficient, turning only 15% to 20% of the gasoline into propulsion. The rest of the energy in the gasoline is lost as waste heat. Wave disk engines promises to be 3.5x more efficient, 20% lighter, 30% cheaper to manufacture, and reduce emissions by 90 percent.

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April 7, 2011

Atomium

The Atomium is a monument in Brussels, originally built for Expo ’58, the 1958 Brussels World’s Fair. Designed by Belgian engineer, André Waterkeyn, it stands 102-metres (335 ft) tall. It has nine steel spheres connected so that the whole forms the shape of a unit cell of an iron crystal magnified 165 billion times. Tubes connect the spheres along the 12 edges of the cube and all eight vertices to the center. They enclose escalators connecting the spheres containing exhibit halls and other public spaces. The top sphere provides a panoramic view of Brussels. Each sphere is 18 meters in diameter.

Three of the four uppermost spheres lack vertical support and hence are not open to the public for safety reasons, although the sphere at the pinnacle is open to the public. The original design called for no supports; the structure was simply to rest on the spheres. Wind tunnel tests proved that the structure would have toppled in an 80 km/h wind. Support columns were added to achieve enough resistance against overturning.

April 7, 2011

Belt of Venus

monolake

The Belt of Venus or Venus’s Girdle is the Victorian-era name for an atmospheric phenomenon seen at sunrise and sunset. Shortly after sunset or shortly before sunrise, the observer is, or is very nearly, surrounded by a pinkish glow or antitwilight arch that extends roughly 10°–20° above the horizon.

Often, the glow is separated from the horizon by a dark layer, the Earth’s shadow or ‘dark segment.’ The Arch’s light rose (pink) color is due to backscattering of reddened light from the rising or setting Sun. A very similar effect can be seen during a total solar eclipse.

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April 7, 2011

Blue Hour

gloaming

The blue hour comes from the French expression l’heure bleue, which refers to the period of twilight each morning and evening where there is neither full daylight nor complete darkness. The time is considered special because of the quality of the light at this time of day. The phrase is also used to refer to Paris immediately prior to World War I, which was considered to be a time of relative innocence.

In English culture the term was used to describe the period of inactivity and uselessness a drinker encounters when Pubs and other licensed premises have closed after the lunch-time session (typically 15:30 hrs) and will not open for the evening session until (typically 18:30 hrs).

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April 7, 2011

Magic Hour

magic hour by Neil Krug

In photography and cinematography, the golden or magic hour, is the first and last hour of sunlight during the day, when a specific photographic effect is achieved due to the quality of the light. Typically, lighting is softer (more diffuse) and warmer in hue. When the Sun is near the horizon, sunlight travels through more of the atmosphere, reducing the intensity of the direct light, so that more of the illumination comes from indirect light from the sky.

More blue light is scattered, so that light from the Sun appears more reddish. In addition, the Sun’s small angle with the horizon produces longer shadows. In the middle of the day, the bright overhead Sun can create too-bright highlights and dark shadows. Because the contrast is less during the golden hour, shadows are less dark, and highlights are less likely to be overexposed.

April 7, 2011

Martini Shot

martini shot by ZOHAR LAZAR

Martini Shot is a Hollywood term that describes the final shot set-up of the day,  so named because ‘the next shot is out of a glass,’ referring to a post-wrap drink.

April 7, 2011

Martini

Martini

The Martini is a cocktail made with gin (or vodka) and vermouth. All ingredients are poured into a mixer with ice cubes. The ingredients are mixed then strained and served ‘straight up’ (without ice) in a chilled cocktail glass and garnished with either a green olive or a twist of lemon (a strip of the peel, usually squeezed or twisted to express volatile oils onto the surface of the drink).

Garnishing with a pickled onion instead makes it a Gibson. The dryness of a martini refers to the amount of vermouth used in the drink, with a very dry Martini having little or no Vermouth.

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April 7, 2011

Aurora Clock

aurora clock

The Aurora Clock has been in production for over 40 years. There are continuously changing colors and surprising color ‘shifts’ when the secondhand disk overlaps the minute & hour hands, and the colors change depending on your viewing angle. The color changes have to do with polarized light and a phenomenon called bi-refractance. Vectors of light are being rotated as they pass through each material which is very different from color filtering.

The first Aurora clocks were made by Rathcon and called the Spectrum. Then they were manufactured by Kirsch-Hamilton. Next, in the late 80’s, Hampton Haddon had a version made in Japan, but abandoned the clock around 1991. In 1993 we at ChronoArt started manufacturing Luminas (a different polarized light clock) and then a year later started also manufacturing new Auroras.

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April 7, 2011

Retinal Display

microvision nomad

A virtual retinal display (VRD) is a display technology that draws a raster display (like a television) directly onto the retina of the eye. The user sees what appears to be a conventional display floating in space in front of them.

To create an image with the VRD a photon source (or three sources in the case of a color display) is used to generate a coherent beam of light (such as a laser diode). The resulting modulated beam is then scanned to place each image point, or pixel, at the proper position on the retina.

April 7, 2011

Autostereogram

vergence

An autostereogram [aw-toh-ster-ee-uh-gram] is a stereogram (an optical illusion of depth created from flat images), designed to create the visual illusion of a three-dimensional scene from a two-dimensional image in the human brain.

In order to perceive 3D shapes in these autostereograms, the brain must overcome the normally automatic coordination between focusing and vergence (the simultaneous movement of both eyes in opposite directions to obtain or maintain single binocular vision).

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