This is my everyday. Ask any content creator. Especially those working in social media. Constraints are everywhere. Should you think outside the box? Of course. But, thinking inside the box has some pretty spectacular results too.
Real People React to the BlackBerry Passport
I’ve made it pretty well known my feelings on BlackBerry in the past so I’ll let the video do the talking on this occasion…
This is BlackBerry’s new flagship phone and as they accurately point out on their website, it;
"challenges the smartphone status quo"
Yeah, it does BlackBerry! I always thought I needed a square phone… *Tries to hide laughter*
Have you tried Siri “hands free” yet?
Download iOS8 and you get an exact copy of “OK Google,” but using Siri. It only works when plugged in which is a bit of a shame. Useful for those late night/early morning searches for apps or the web when I can’t be bothered to move my arms yet (because that happens all the time. I’m sure it happens to you too? No. Ok, just me).
Try it today!
Social Sharing Should Be Easier, Surely?
Before you start, I know you can share using the native sharing icon at the bottom of Safari or in the drop down menu of Chrome, but surely sharing should be more connected to the apps you have on your phone?
Take The Verge for example. As in the Gif above I’m on their mobile site, I’ve got the option to share to Twitter via the sharing button at the top of the page. I tap, it opens a new tab looking to share to the Twitter mobile site. Not the app, but I have the app on my phone already. Why doesn’t it open the app? Surely that’s a better sharing experience?
Hyperlapse Brings Professional Video to the Masses
It’s always cool when you see those time lapses at the opening titles of Sherlock or other such programmes. Time lapses are cool and Instagram has just brought cool to the masses, as it did with photography not to long ago.
The Hyperlapse app from Instagram arrived a couple of weeks ago and since then thousands of people have been hyperlapseing their world. Making people move at speed on the streets or making objects like helicopters appear like toys in fast forward.
Some of the best looking Hyperlapse’s, aren’t actually those that use the full speed capabilities of the app. Some people will probably have realised this software is extreme image stabilisation software - that’s where the key lies to this amazing product. It’s like having a steady cam without any of the gear to carry around. That opens up all sorts of opportunities.
A couple below of what I mean.
With the right lighting you can create your own cinematic masterpiece for 15 seconds.
Speaking of 15 seconds, that appears to be about the right amount of time for one shot (unless you have a lot happening in the background!) I tried the Hyperlapse app with some more traditional time lapse software that I’d use with a GoPro and it didn’t quite have the same results. Primarily because the GoPro is taking hundreds or thousands of pictures over a set space of time. The Hyperlapse app takes video in real time and speeds it up. It therefore has limitations.
Saying that you can always import the footage and put it through further image stabilisation and speed it up further.
Hyperlapse’s are exceptionally cool. I’d encourage you to have a go. Budding creatives like me will be pushing this app to do more and more for sometime to come. Will there be a full Hyperlapse movie? Sound issues aside, I’m sure someone is already working on it!
Vine takes the upload button plunge
It’s been a while coming but Vine have finally taken the decision to allow pre-recorded video uploads from your camera roll.
Like Instagram before it this will now allow content creators everywhere to upload their pre-edited masterpieces into Vine in all their glory.
There’s two ways of looking at it.
1. All the time and effort the Vine community spent learning that a small swipe of the screen rather than a tap creates a shorter frame in their stop motion video will have gone to waste. The major brands, professional video editors and people with tonnes of dough will be able to upload whatever they wish. Diminishing the talent of the Vine creators that have taken the platform by storm.
2. They could already do all of that anyway via a few easily Googleable shortcuts. Therefore will it really change anything? It might in fact bring in more content creators and brands who don’t have the time or resources to afford an hour to create a beautiful piece of stop motion. For those already well established Viners it opens up their creative constraints to make even better videos that wow us, make us laugh and go “aww” everyday.
Both views are valid. Personally I probably sit in the seconds camp and I’ll use Vine both as a content creation tool and a place to upload other pieces of my creativity both at home and when at work. I’ve got videos coming out of my ears that could do with rethinking for Vine and I can’t wait to get my head stuck into reimagining them for a 6 second square videos.
It’s taken a while, but at last someone other than a concept artist has made a smartwatch that actually looks like a cool watch I’d want to wear!
Well done Google.
Update: Google have released a couple of videos showing Android Wear in action in the real world.
The developer preview video is pretty sweet too
Vox - a website you should keep an eye on
Each of the sites listed above are sites I admire from how well they write, but more than that, the way they construct articles and pieces of news for the modern reader. Vox Media is one of the few organisations I’ve seen that’s got their finger on the pulse when it comes to pushing the boundaries of how we consume news on the internet today.
I, for one, am very excited by this new site, I think you should be too.
Almost exactly one year ago, Facebook laid out its vision for the future of News Feed. Facebook spent months refining its new design, which touted huge photos, a dynamic navigation bar, and Tumblr-esque profile photos. The company rolled out its new design to a fraction of its billion users, and then called the whole thing off. Users hated the new design. So for its next News Feed, Facebook went back to square one.
And here it is…
Very similar to what we have now…
It’s seemingly not so easy to “move fast and break things” when you have 1.2 billion users.
It would seem so.
- Mark Zuckerberg