The virtual set technology that's replacing the green screen

October 26, 2020

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This is a video of a lead compositor from Industrial Light and Magic breaking down the technology they used on The Mandalorian to replace green screens. It's basically a giant wraparound LED screen displaying CGI backgrounds that respond to the camera's movement. It's one of the coolest innovations in the film industry, though not exactly something the average person has access to. I bought 50 TV's and stacked them all around my living room to try to make one of my own but the results were terrible and now I owe $100k across fifteen different credit cards and it's stressing me out. I can, however, watch every episode of Breaking Bad at once now so...worth it?

Keep going for the full video, as well another one going into further detail about the technology.

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Freddy Krueger made out of crayons and then melted

October 26, 2020

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This is a timelapse of artist Steven Richter sculpting Freddy Krueger from A Nightmare on Elm Street out of crayons and then melting it. It reminds me of the face melting scene from Raiders of the Lost Ark. I just wish he had more frames in his timelapse so we could get a smoother more detailed face melt. In my experience, when melting a face you really want to make sure you can savor all the little details. I mean, uh, there's nothing buried in my backyard.

Keep going for the full video and check out his Instagram here.

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The world's largest air cannon

October 23, 2020

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This is the world's largest air cannon which was made in cooperation with Czech TV show Wonders of Nature. There's definitely a missed opportunity to use it directly on a person. What's the worst that could happen? They fall over? Also they're clearly going by size and not force, because I would beat this thing any day of the week after having some Taco Bell.

Keep going for the full video of them basically just knocking over a bunch of cardboard boxes with this thing. 5:30 is the closest they get to actually hitting anybody with it, but nobody gets seriously injured so it's not entirely satisfying.

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The full official trailer for the Animaniacs reboot

October 23, 2020

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Here's the full official trailer for the Animaniacs reboot on Hulu. They seem to have found the perfect tone and approach for the 21st century. I was already sold on their Jurassic Park announcement, but now I'm legitimately excited. Is it normal for an adult to be this hyped for a cartoon aimed at children? Is it even aimed at children? I feel like adults are the only ones who can actually appreciate how insane the world has gotten and need the Animaniacs to help make sense of things. I mean, I generally leave my mental health and well being to cartoon characters.

Keep going for the full trailer.

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RIP The Amazing Randi (1928-2020)

October 22, 2020

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RIP The Amazing Randi. He was one of the most iconic and important people in the world of magic and skepticism. He spent a lifetime debunking charlatans and scammers and even offered a $1 million prize to anybody who could display paranormal abilities under controlled scientific conditions. He died today at the age of 92.

Keep going for his TED talk on homeopathy, quackery and fraud; as well as a bunch of other videos of him doing his thing.

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Using AI to turn animated characters into realistic portraits

October 22, 2020

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Motion graphic artist Nathan Shipley has been using a StyleGAN encoder to turn works of art into realistic-looking portraits. Above are the Mona Lisa and Miles Morales from Into The Spider-Verse, but his latest focus has been on Pixar characters. So far he's done The Incredibles, Russell from Up, and Miguel from Coco.

Keep going for more of Shipley's work. It turns out computers are way better at turning cartoons into realistic portraits than humans are. The results actually look like people as opposed to horrific nightmare monsters. Case in point: these Simpsons monstrosities.

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GMC made a Hummer EV and the announcement video is really something

October 22, 2020

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Does the stereotype of Hummer owners compensating for something still apply when the Hummer is an EV? Is it the cross section of Tesla douches and Hummer douches to create the ultimate small-penised douche? Because I'll take two.

Keep going for the full announcement video. It honestly looks pretty great assuming they can deliver on what they're promising.

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