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308. Sparked Art: Etsuko Ichikawa April 30, 2007

Posted by Matt Fleming, PsyD in Art.
1 comment so far

Etsuko Ichikawa makes these pieces by burning paper with melting glass. She lives in Seattle, and is featured via the Randall Scott Gallery.

My wife and I saw Ichikawa’s work in person this weekend at ArtDC, and fell in love with all of it. We bought two pieces.

See more of her work HERE.

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307. Bright Idea: Hook Boxes April 30, 2007

Posted by Matt Fleming, PsyD in Product.
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Simple and practical. However, these pictured hook boxes are made out ceramics and are just prototypes (I think). By LucaNichetto; via Swissmiss.

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306. Bright Idea: PLAY! Table April 30, 2007

Posted by Matt Fleming, PsyD in Product.
1 comment so far

This amazing table has 16 separate compartments you can access one at a time by sliding around the square panels (like the classic handheld sliding puzzle). This PLAY! table is made by BCXSY; via Core77.com.

If you want to see video of the table in action, go HERE and jump to 4.5 minutes in.

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305. Quickie Web: Illusion: Hot bod? April 30, 2007

Posted by Matt Fleming, PsyD in Optical Illusion, Quickie Web.
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Before your get too excited or envious with the image in this photo, wait for it to change. Via MoIllusions.com. The missing belly-button should be the giveaway.

(Hopefully, you can see the image.  If not, it is worth following this link HERE).

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304. Idea TV: Everyday Edisons April 28, 2007

Posted by Matt Fleming, PsyD in Idea TV.
2 comments

As some of you may know, I auditioned for season 2 of Everyday Edisons, the invention show on PBS. I am currently in the final 25 spots, waiting to find out it if I made it to the top 12 for Season 2 of the show (I will know May 6th). If you want to know more about my journey, start HERE.

The premiere of Season 1 will be this Saturday on PBS.

To learn about Everyday Edisons, go HERE. To check your local PBS listings to see if and when it is being broadcast in your area, go HERE. I also hope to be posting a summary of the episode for Americaninventorspot.com in the next few days. So stay tuned! It should be a great show.

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303. Bright Idea: Swing ‘N Load April 28, 2007

Posted by Matt Fleming, PsyD in Product.
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I don’t have a pick-up truck, but if I did, I would definitely own this Bright Idea: the Swing ‘N Load. Not only can you load it up like in this photo, but then it swivels back so it is mostly out of the way. You can get a clearer idea via the video clip below (47 seconds).

Incidentally, I happen to be corresponding with the inventor, who also auditioned for Everyday Edisons. He is a good guy and successful inventor, and I know this invention of his will go far.

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302. Quickie Web: Video: Web 2.0 is Us/ing Us April 27, 2007

Posted by Matt Fleming, PsyD in Quickie Web, Video.
2 comments

Created by Kansas State U. cultural anthropology professor Michael Wesch, this 4.5 minute music video demonstrates the power and potential of Web 2.0 without spoken word. It was viewed 1.8 million times on Youtube in in its first six weeks. I was moved to tears by the end of the clip, and not really sure why. Via Wired.


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301. Bright Idea: Rocking Blanket April 26, 2007

Posted by Matt Fleming, PsyD in Experience, Plaything, Product.
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I wish they made an adult version of this rocking blanket. And I also wish I had two trustworthy friends who were giants with iron-gripping hand strength. I also wish I could fly and become invisible and stop time. Buy the kid version blanket HERE (40 Euros); via Swissmiss.com.

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300. Quickie Web: Game: Angry Faic April 26, 2007

Posted by Matt Fleming, PsyD in Game, Quickie Web.
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Here is some original game play to help kill a few minutes. This web game is also potentially therapeutic for those folks who are generally annoyed with emoticons.

Instructions: Keep your large falling grimace ball in the air by bouncing it on the smaller emoticons using your arrow keys. Eventually, change the color of your ball to match the various target balls. Play a few rounds HERE. Via GameLife.com.

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299. Bright Idea: Interactive Advertising April 26, 2007

Posted by Matt Fleming, PsyD in Experience, Marketing.
2 comments

Imagine being in this Canadian bus stop, and talking into this billboard to a complete stranger, who turns out to be at another similar bus stop in an entirely different city. I think that would be wild. What a brilliant marketing idea for Solo phones.

What would even be wilder is if you began to have phone-sex with this stranger, and then eventually fell in love and got married. Via Core77.com.

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298. Bright Idea: Stair Drawer April 26, 2007

Posted by Matt Fleming, PsyD in Product.
1 comment so far

I live in a house where we remove our shoes at the door. I think shoes by the door makes the entrance look cluttered, and my wife doesn’t like shoe racks. This Bright Idea would be the perfect solution for us, since we also have a few stairs in our foyer.

In general, I love hidden and space-saving places to put all my crap. Via Freshome.com.

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297. Bright Idea: the Bicycle Lift (Norway) April 24, 2007

Posted by Matt Fleming, PsyD in Service, Video.
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This Bright Idea simply and mechanically assists bicyclists up steep hills, whilst still on their bikes. Found in the little Norwegian town of Trondheim (Norway’s 3rd largest city), this system should be installed everywhere around the world, me thinks. Watch this short (1 minute) documentary video clip of Trampe, the Bicycle Lift.

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It reminds me of the US version: the shopping cart escalator.

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296. Bright Idea: the Lucifer Matchbox April 24, 2007

Posted by Matt Fleming, PsyD in Product.
3 comments

This gorgeous object is the brilliantly designed Lucifer match holder and lighter. Simple turn it over to access a match, and pulling the match out will automatically light it.

I have been looking for the perfect matchbox to keep next to my toilet (when making poo poo, I light a match to combat the odor) but haven’t found one cool enough yet. This one would work.

Too bad it is not in production (I don’t think); by FeelAddicted.com; via Core77.com.

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295. Bright Idea: Picnic Wine Bottle Holder April 24, 2007

Posted by Matt Fleming, PsyD in Product.
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I thought that this was a pretty Bright Idea. Push this gadget into the ground to securely hold your wine when outdoors.

Just make sure you pack it properly in transit or the spike may poke through the bag and into your kidney. Buy it HERE (UK 6 Pounds); via Gadgetizer.com.

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285. Quickie Web: Perspective Illusions April 19, 2007

Posted by Matt Fleming, PsyD in Art, Optical Illusion, Quickie Web.
3 comments

You can only see these images perfectly aligned from one specific vantage point. Via Moillusions.com.

(1) The Cardiff Bay Barrage illusion: the yellow circles are actually painted on all the objects. Click HERE to see how it was made.

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(2) Perth Impossible Triangle illusion: look closely, and you will see that this is the classic impossible object (i.e. it cannot really be constructed as it appears). Click HERE to see how it was made.

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(3) Painted room illusion. Click HERE to see more similarly painted rooms.

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284. Bright Idea: The Apartment Slide April 19, 2007

Posted by Matt Fleming, PsyD in Experience, Plaything, Product.
3 comments

Why not? It’s fun, and saves energy wasted during elevator-usage. Similar to the London Public Slides. Via random-good-stuff.com.

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283. Bright Idea: The 2-Second Tent April 19, 2007

Posted by Matt Fleming, PsyD in Product.
4 comments

Watch this 11-second video clip of the 2-second tent in action. Bright Idea. Enough said (and shown). Via Coolestgadgets.com.

P.S. WARNING: Turns out this tent is not so Bright an Idea, because it is flamable.  So don’t buy it; just appreciate the creativity behind the design, and not the material choice and lack of product safety testing.  Thanks to a comment by a SparkBugg reader; link to article HERE.

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282. Bright Idea: Right Guard Spray Can April 19, 2007

Posted by Matt Fleming, PsyD in Product.
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Very occasionally, I will forget to put deodorant on in the morning. Or, once every several months, the deodorant I use will stop working all of a sudden (then I have to find a new brand). Both events makes me stinky at work, so I purchased some spray deodorant, like the one pictured, to keep at work for back up.

It turns out, this particular dispenser is a very smart design. Because of its shape, it is very conducive to spraying yourself under your shirt while your shirt is still on. Hold the can in your fist, and your thumb squeezes the trigger, with the spray coming out the tip, straight up into your pits. You really have to use it once to truly appreciate the convenience of the design. There is a bonus twist-lock mechanism as well to prevent accidental spraying when not in use.

I love practical and thoughtful design like this. Makes me want to forget using my roll-on in the morning once in a while.

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281. Quickie Web: Muscial Plaything: Desktopblues April 17, 2007

Posted by Matt Fleming, PsyD in Audio, Plaything, Quickie Web.
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desktopblues

(Note: the image above is not functional; go HERE to play). Tap into your inner musician and jam along to the blues. Anyone can make great music with this simple and fun web toy. Simply turn the “radio” on, then randomly hit the various colored buttons: Orange = Guitar riff, Purple = Vocals, Green = Vocal + Guitar.

And if you feel really creative and brave, actually make up and sing your own verses out loud. Singing the blues was never so much fun. Check out this great web musicmaker HERE (noisegames.com).

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280. Bright Idea: the Airzooka April 17, 2007

Posted by Matt Fleming, PsyD in Plaything, Product, Video.
1 comment so far

I remember coming across this in a toy store and loving it. Hiding at the back of the store, I was able to shoot an invisible ring of air at my friend as he walked in a little later. From 15 feet away, I messed up his hair and innocuously shocked the crap out of him. He didn’t know what hit him until I emerged from behind the boardgames display giggling like a little school girl (little school boys chuckle…and I was giggling). What simple and safe fun, for $15. Buy one HERE.

To get a visual sense of how this toy works, watch this cool 35 second video of smoke ring generators. Via Make.com (where you can also learn to construct a home-made version).


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279. Bright Idea: The Obelisk Chairs April 17, 2007

Posted by Matt Fleming, PsyD in Art, Product.
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These four chairs look comfortable, with low, thick backs you can lean elbows on (always a must when loungin’). And when you aren’t using them, form them into this 8-ft obelisk, which gives you a beautiful outdoor sculpture piece, as well as a way to keep everything dry from the elements. Made out of aluminum and woven polyethylene.

Perfect for a rich family of four. Why? Notice that two of the chairs are smaller than the others (thus, for the children). And this will cost you $9000. Buy it HERE; via Uberreview.com.

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…metapost… April 16, 2007

Posted by Matt Fleming, PsyD in Uncategorized.
1 comment so far

Because of B2.is, I got over 2000 hits a few days ago (about a 1000% increase over the daily average). Thanks, my Icelandic friends, for visiting! And thanks to B2.is, for listing a link to my LampLamp post. Read more about the statistics here ( @ Metabugg.com).

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278. Bright Idea: Pen with Integrated Note Paper April 16, 2007

Posted by Matt Fleming, PsyD in Product.
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If you need to quickly jot something important down, it requires two items: a writing implement, and a piece of paper. I usually have a pen nearby, but this past week alone, I scribbled something on the back of a discarded envelope, a napkin, and inside of a matchbook. I can usually remember to record audio notes on my cell phone, but half the time, I am talking to someone on my phone when I need to transcribe something they tell me. When that happens, I wish I had this gadget pen.

This $30 (ouch!) pen from Solutions has two feet of spooled paper for your note-taking convenience. Simply jot and tear. You also get two additional paper refills when ordering it; buy it HERE. Via Core77.com.

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277. Quickie Web: Mashup: Magnetosphere and Sir Ken Robinson April 16, 2007

Posted by Matt Fleming, PsyD in Art, Audio, Quickie Web, Video.
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For an inspirational multimedia experience, click on the pink Odeo play button below, and then jump to about 2 minutes in. It is an audio talk about creativity in education, by Sir Ken Robinson. This presentation is taken from the TED Talks (for Thinking, Entertainment, Design; the website and other presentations HERE).

[odeo=http://odeo.com/audio/1400271/view]

Then, while the talk is playing, click the Youtube play button below to also watch the video clip. It is of dancing lights, beautifully synchronized to music . This hypnotic 4-minute video clip is called Magnetosphere, by Robert Hodgin, with music my Trentemoller.

You don’t have to listen to all 17 minutes of the audio talk, of course, but you may want to. If so, click play on the Songspot to the right for additional background music once the Youtube clip ends. FYI: if you leave this page, the audio will stop.

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276. Bright Idea: EarthFriendlyMoving April 16, 2007

Posted by Matt Fleming, PsyD in Service.
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As I was packing and moving the past two weeks, I first had to pay about $100 for cardboard boxes. Then, when the boxes were packed, some of them got crushed when stacked. Then when I unpacked them, I felt obligated to find someone to give them to for reuse (since they did cost me $100).

Because of this experience, I came up with an IdeaSpark*. But, it turns out someone already came up with this business idea (in California).

EarthFriendlyMoving has sturdy, stackable, recycled-plastic boxes that they rent for $1/week. They come in 5 different sizes, and still will be cheaper to rent than buying cardboard boxes. EFM will deliver and pick them up for you. They also have eco-friendly pallets, packing paper, and packing pellets. Pretty practical and positively prudent.

More convenient, cheaper, and better for the environment. How can you beat that? Quite a Bright Idea. Check out their website HERE. Via Springwise.com.

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275. Sparked Art: Brauchli Photo-Sculptures April 13, 2007

Posted by Matt Fleming, PsyD in Art.
1 comment so far

These are photographs of sculpture: fleeting wisps of ephemeral smoke curlicues (hmm…redundant, perhaps, but poetic, no?). I have always thought that the smoke off an extinguished candle or match was gorgeous. Stephan Brauchli captures these images, then mirrors them, giving us not only a piece of art, but a distinct rorschach opportunity (do you see a singing angel in the picture above?). Check them all out HERE.

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…metapost… April 13, 2007

Posted by Matt Fleming, PsyD in Uncategorized.
2 comments

Hello, everyone! I am back, finally. Thanks for your patience. Not only did I not have web access at home, a nasty cold kept me from work and Panera, so there was no chance to post at all. But, the Comcast cable man came today and hooked me back up. Nice.

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…metapost… April 7, 2007

Posted by Matt Fleming, PsyD in Uncategorized.
4 comments

Dear readers: unfortunately, for the next week, there will less then average postings. I just moved into a new home, and haven’t been able to set up internet access yet. I am writing you, today, via free WiFi at a local Panera Bread (I love this place). So, please bear with me as I set up home web access, unpack, and get settled. I am anxious to be back posting regularly, so I will be writing more soon. Thanks.

SparkBugg

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274. Quickie Web: Illusion: Hybrid Images April 5, 2007

Posted by Matt Fleming, PsyD in Optical Illusion, Quickie Web.
1 comment so far

I thought this was quite cool. The left image appears to be an angry man, and the right is a calm woman (or a very pretty man). Now step back a few feet and squint your eyes. The images switch. Pretty amazing, huh?

Created by Dr. Oliva and Dr. Schyns, this hydrid illusion “illustrates the ability of our visual system to separate information coming from different spatial frequency channels” (got that?).

Here is a picture of Albert Einstien. Step back and squint, and you should see another timeless icon.

Via Hybrid Images@MIT.

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273. Sparked Art: Creative Guitaring April 4, 2007

Posted by Matt Fleming, PsyD in Art, Audio, Video.
3 comments

Check out these two videos where guitars are played in a more complex manner. Pretty amazing. Bonus: the songs are actually pretty good, too.

This first video (3:08) is three guys playing one guitar (lead, bass, and percussion). They are called Corporeal, from Libertyville, Il, and the song is called “All We Got.”

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This next video (3:18) is similar, but with only one guy playing. Here is Andy McKee playing “Drifting.”


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