Archive for May 16th, 2012

May 16, 2012

Verner Panton

panton chair

Verner Panton (1926 – 1998) is considered one of Denmark’s most influential 20th-century furniture and interior designers. During his career, he created innovative, funky and futuristic designs in a variety of materials, especially plastics, and in vibrant and exotic colors.

His style was very ‘1960s’ but regained popularity at the end of the 20th century; as of 2004, Panton’s most well-known furniture models are still in production (at Vitra, among others).

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May 16, 2012

Martin Sharp

Ultramarine Boofhead by martin sharp

Martin Sharp (b. 1942) is an Australian artist, underground cartoonist, songwriter and film-maker. His famous psychedelic posters of Bob Dylan, Donovan, and others, rank as classics of the genre, alongside the work of Rick Griffin, Hapshash and the Coloured Coat, and Milton Glaser.

His covers, cartoons and illustrations were a central feature of ‘Oz’ magazine, both in Australia and in London. Martin co-wrote one of Cream’s most famous songs, ‘Tales of Brave Ulysses,’ created the cover art for Cream’s ‘Disraeli Gears’ and ‘Wheels of Fire’ albums, and in the 1970s, he became a champion of singer Tiny Tim, and of Sydney’s embattled Luna Park.

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May 16, 2012

Mars to Stay

terraforming mars by detlev van ravenswaay

Mars to Stay missions propose astronauts sent to Mars for the first time should intend to stay, with their unused emergency return vehicles recycled into settlement construction as soon as the habitability of Mars becomes evident to the initial pioneers. Mars to Stay missions are advocated both to reduce cost and to ensure permanent settlement of Mars.

Among many notable Mars to Stay advocates, former Apollo astronaut Buzz Aldrin has been particularly outspoken, suggesting in numerous forums ‘Forget the Moon, Let’s Head to Mars!’ The Mars Underground, Mars Homestead Foundation, and Mars Artists Community have also adopted Mars to Stay policy initiatives. The earliest formal outline of a Mars to Stay mission architecture was given at the ‘Case for Mars VI Workshop’ in 1990, during a presentation by George Herbert titled ‘One Way to Mars.’

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May 16, 2012

Max Headroom

max headroom

Max Headroom is a fictional British artificial intelligence, known for his wit and stuttering, distorted, electronically sampled voice. It was introduced in early 1984. The character was created by George Stone, Annabel Jankel, and Rocky Morton, and portrayed by Matt Frewer as ‘The World’s first computer generated TV host’ although the computer generated appearance was achieved with prosthetic make up. The classic look for the character was a shiny dark suit – which was actually a fibreglass mould – often paired with Ray-Ban Wayfarer sunglasses.

Only his head and shoulders were depicted, usually against a ‘computer generated’ backdrop of a slowly rotating wire-frame cube interior, which was also initially generated by analogue means – in this case traditional cel animation, though later actual computer graphics were employed for the backdrop. Another distinguishing trademark of Max was his chaotic speech patterns – his voice would seemingly randomly pitch up or down, or occasionally get stuck in a loop. These modulations also appeared when the character was performed live.

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May 16, 2012

New Coke

coke ii

pepsi challange

New Coke was the reformulation of Coca-Cola introduced in 1985; it originally had no separate name of its own, and was simply known as ‘the new taste of Coca-Cola’ until 1992 when it was renamed Coca-Cola II. The American public’s reaction to the change was negative and the new cola was a major marketing failure.

The subsequent reintroduction of Coke’s original formula, re-branded as ‘Coca-Cola Classic,’ resulted in a significant gain in sales, leading to speculation that the introduction of the New Coke formula was just a marketing ploy.

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May 16, 2012

Crystal Pepsi

buzz cola

right now

Crystal Pepsi was a caffeine-free soft drink made by PepsiCo from 1992 to 1993 in the United States, Canada, and for a short time in Australia. Crystal Pepsi was sold for a longer time in Europe.

In the early 1990s, a marketing fad equating clarity with purity began with the remake of Ivory soap from its classic milky solution; the idea spread to many companies, including PepsiCo. Its marketing slogan was ‘You’ve never seen a taste like this.’ A large marketing campaign was launched, for which the company invented the world’s first photo-realistic, computer-generated bus wrap printing. A series of television advertisements featuring Van Halen’s hit song ‘Right Now’ during Super Bowl XXVII.

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May 16, 2012

Vernors

vernors

Vernors Ginger Soda is America’s oldest surviving soft drink. It was created in 1866 by James Vernor, a Detroit pharmacist. According to company legend, prior to the start of the American Civil War, while a clerk at the Higby & Sterns drugstore in Detroit, James Vernor experimented with flavors in an attempt to duplicate a popular ginger ale imported from Ireland.

When Vernor was called off to serve in the war, he stored the syrup base of 19 ingredients, including ginger, vanilla, and other natural flavorings, in an oak cask. Vernor joined the Michigan Cavalry in 1862 as a hospital steward. After returning from battle four years later, he opened the keg and found the drink inside had been changed by the aging process in the wood. It was like nothing else he had ever tasted, and he purportedly declared it ‘Deliciously different,’ which remains the drink’s motto to this day.

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May 16, 2012

Anti-Cult Movement

ted patrick

The anti-cult movement (ACM) refers to groups and individuals who oppose cults and new religious movements (NRM). Sociologists David G. Bromley and Anson Shupe initially defined the ACM in 1981 as a collection of groups embracing brainwashing-theory, but later observed a significant shift in ideology towards a ‘medicalization’ of the memberships of new religious movements.

This countermovement has reportedly recruited from family members of ‘cultists’; former cult members, (or apostates); church groups; and associations of health professionals. A significant minority opinion suggests that analysis should treat the secular anti-cult movement separately from the religiously motivated (mainly Christian) groups. The anti-cult movement might be divided into four classes: secular counter-cult groups; Christian evangelical counter-cult groups; groups formed to counter a specific cult; and organizations that offer some form of exit counseling.

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