What If Everything Ran on Gas?

This week Nissan released this funny 60-second spot for the electirc-powered Leaf. Nissan imagines a world where everything runs on gasoline. Well if you live here in Ontario most of your electricity is coming from nuclear and hydro, as you can see in these charts that show us where our electricity is coming from this hour.

Watching the technician check the oil in the photocopier and the laptop being filled with gasoline from the converted watercooler are particularly funny moments. Did you notice the ‘not-so-subtle’ jab at the Chevrolet Volt hybrid? The Volt owner stands at the gas pumps and looks longingly as the Leaf drives by.

While the building of infrastructure for the recharging of electrical vehicles is still in the early stages, it’s satisfying to see these cars starting to reach the streets.

Chris Milk & Arcade Fire’s ‘Summer Into Dust’ Experience Continues Online

If you were at Coachella last month for Arcade Fire’s Saturday night performance you watched as hundreds of large beach balls cascaded down from the top of the stage. The beach balls bounced throughout the crowd changing colour in time with the music, and if you were really lucky you walked or drive away that night with one of them.

The experience is a collaborative between director Chris Milk and Arcade Fire (they had previously collaborated on the ground-breaking browser video ‘The Wilderness Downtown’). The beach balls were equipped with LEDs and IR transmitter technology provided by ESKI and Moment Factory. It turns out that the Coachella performance that night was only the beginning of an interactive experience entitled ‘Summer Into Dust’. Those who managed to get their glowing beach balls home are asked to share pictures and videos, as well as discover new ways to interact with them.

The experience is part of the Creators Project, a partnership between Intel and Vice celebrating art and creativity using digital technologies.

Dear Sixteen Year Old Me – Be Careful Out There

I saw the video tweeted today earlier. I had a few minutes and clicked on it – I assumed it was might be a cute cautionary tale on growing up, possibly something to do with risky lifestyle choices like sex, drinking or drugs. It wasn’t 25 seconds in when the people in the video began revealing their scars from cancer operations that it became deadly serious.

The video was produced by the David Cornfield Melanoma Fund, which was established in 2007 and is devoted to promoting awareness of melanoma in order to save lives. David Cornfield was just 32 years-old when he was diagnosed with melanoma. After being in remission for two years the cancer returned to his lungs then spread to his brain and spinal column, paralyzing him for the last month of his life. After his death his wife Sari founded the fund.

Every year 5300 Canadians are diagnosed with melanoma and 1000 die. If your receive a severe sunburn before the age of 16 the risk of contracting melanoma can double. Good news, nearly 90% melanoma cases can be cured if caught in time.

This video is once of the most effective videos for cancer awareness that I have ever seen. Having spent nearly everyday of the summer running around without a shirt with no thoughts of wearing sunscreen, it made me think and start looking for weird moles. So far so good.

It’s cool that the music used is ‘Generator, First Floor‘ by the Freelance Whales, who I just saw play live last weekend.

So, take care of yourself friends. Have those suspicious moles checked, and get in the habit of checking your skin once a month. There are some great worksheets and information available on the DCMF web site.

Here’s the Spin on Record Store Day

Record Store Day 2011
Attention music lovers, in case you didn’t know today, April 16th is Record Store Day. First launched 3 short years ago in 2008, Record Store Day is now celebrated at over 700 stores in the US, more than 100 here in Canada and many more around the world. Record Store Day celebrates those independent music retailers who are working to keep

The day is now marked with hundreds of instore performances by performers such as My Morning Jacket, Foo Fighters, Drive-By Truckers (full list here) and special releases from everyone from AC/DC to Lady GaGa to Yeasayer. (full list of special releases here)

Yes, I have a few 45s lying around

One of the most unusual releases is a 78rpm 10″ vinyl version of The Beach Boys classic 1966 singles Good Vibrations and a B-side of Heroes and Villains alongwith alternate takes on both songs on a separate disc. It will be interesting to know how many record buyers still have the ability to play a 78rpm record, but no doubt playing a record this rare and special may not be a good idea.

Sonic Boom on Bloor Street has a full day of performers for Toronto music lovers to check out, contact your local store for details on special releases and times

Sonic Boom Music
512 Bloor Street
1pm – Modern Superstititions
2pm – Teenanger
3pm – Bidiniband
4pm – Rouge
5pm – Ben Gunning
6pm – SIster
7pm – Light Fires
8pm – Zeus
9pm – The Wooden Sky

Sunrise Records
336 Yonge Street
12 noon – Darrelle London
2pm – The Spoons
4:30 pm – Silverstein
7 pm – Anvil

Status Update: Cobra Found, Bronx Zoo Site Goes Down

Bronx Zoo Cobra foundYou can expect it to be slithering room only (ugh, I know) when the Bronx Zoo’s Reptile House re-opens in a week or so. The missing 24-inch venomous Egyptian cobra that captured the imagination of the people of New York City and around the world has been found. The snake which was only a few months was found in an dark and quiet area of the reptile house that she originally disappeared from last Saturday.

It was a social media coup for the Bronx Zoo that no one could have planned better if they tried. National and international news coverage with jokes and skits on every late night variety show. The traffic and attention on the recovery of the snake even brought down the Zoo’s website Thursday, leaving administrators to post this message on the home page, “We found our cobra, but lost our websites – Due to extremely high traffic about our Egyptian Cobra, our sites are temporarily unavailable.”

One of the most imaginative and entertaining outlets during the past week was a great @BronxZoosCobra Twitter account that has amassed over 200,000 followers in just 4 days. The Bronx Zoo itself picked up several thousand Twitter followers during the week. Here are a few of my favorite Tweets from the Cobra… or should those be Hisses? (ugh, again)

“If you see a bag of peanuts inexplicably moving along the ground at Yankee Stadium today. Just ignore it. It’s probably nothing.”

“Got a bagel at H & H Bagels on upper west side. When I ordered I said, “I’ll have the snakes on a PLAIN.” He did not laugh. Tough crowd.”

“Does anyone know if the Whole Foods in Columbus Circle sells organic mice?”

“Rockefeller Plaza is amaz….wait…OMG! Tina Fey totally just walked by me! HUUUUGE FAN! #snakeonthetown”

I’m sure no one at the Bronx Zoo ever imagined the volumes of great PR they would get during the snake’s escape, but its great to see that everything has come to a happy ending for everyone. I know where I’ll be heading next time I’m in New York City.