Dan Hume's Blog

The Dot iPhone Panorama Lens
January 31, 2012, 12:21 am
Filed under: Extended Major Project

It’s here! Finally you can shoot full 360° video straight on the iPhone. It doesn’t come cheap, but nonetheless it does exist meaning we are probably going to see more panoramic videos in the foreseeable future. 360° video is something I want to create for this project, because it now gives the audience the chance to explore the surrounds of a virtual environment. We’ve always watched films and Tv shows from one perspective that is controlled for us. This piece of kit will change that by allowing people to choose what they want to see.

Snap Dot onto your iPhone 4 / 4S, download our free Looker app, and instantly record fully immersive 360° videos right on your iPhone. Going to a concert? You can record the show and the audience. Heading out on a road trip? Leave Dot on the dashboard and record your highway adventures. No matter what you’re recording, Dot sees everything!

How does it work?

Kogeto’s compact and durable iCONIC lens works with the iPhone 4 / 4S HD video camera to capture full 360° video — all at once — without stitching frames together. Our unique catadioptric optical system is fully AR-coated for excellent color fidelity in all environments. Dot is a lightweight attachment that doesn’t require batteries or external power.

Click on the image below to check out their catalogue of dot videos!

With the ability to shoot 360 panorama video, you give the user the opportunity to explore a particular environment; therefore gaining external information of what they’ve just watched on a conventional video.


More Contextual Research
January 30, 2012, 3:37 am
Filed under: Extended Major Project

In my last post I looked at the concept of GOOD Maker as a platform, which engages anyone with an idea that is a solution to one of their challenges. On their website they have a section on the environment and I took this as an opportunity to further my contextual idea for this project. I thought it might be a good idea to read some articles that state different issues on the environment.

Here are some of the environmental articles I’ve read and are published on GOOD’s website.

Why Historic Buildings Are Greener Than LEED-Certified New Ones

Where Do People Walk and Bike the Most? It’s Not Where You Think

Subway Blues: Car Commuters Are Getting Bigger Tax Breaks Than Transit Riders

I’ve selected all the issues about the environment that are connected to living in densely populated places like a city, because I’m wanting to film in London.

More Research – Good Magazine
January 30, 2012, 3:01 am
Filed under: Extended Major Project

This is an interesting multi platform concept based around the word ‘Good’. I feel this has similarities between my idea for my EMP, which I’m creating this documentary around the idea of an invisible camera. There is a ‘environmental’ section on their website, which has lots of short videos relating to the subject but each one depicting different issues. This should help me decide whether or not I should make a series of short videos or just one standard video.

GOOD is a media platform that promotes, connects, and reports on the individuals, businesses, and non-profits “moving the world forward.”Good produces a website (GOOD.is), a quarterly magazine, and online video content covering a variety of topics, including the environment, education, urban planning, design, food, politics, culture, and health.

Good was founded in 2006 by Ben Goldhirsh, son of entrepreneur and Inc. Magazine creator Bernie Goldhirsh.

Good Maker

This is a diagram that I’ve taken from their website  that clearly shows how this company operates.

Here is an example of how this works. The challenge is set by Good, which in this case is:

In the spirit of the latest edition of GOOD Magazine “The Next Big Thing”, we’re asking our community this question: How will you promote sharing in your community? The top idea will receive a $1,000 grant.

Then people submit their ideas in response to this particular challenge. Then whoever comes up with the best and effective concept wins the grant money.

Winning Idea

The Idea

For about every 70 people anywhere in the world, 1 person is homeless. If a homeless person can have even just one friend who can offer simple help and good influence, the homelessness problem in this world can be eliminated with just one friend at a time.

The Plan

Our group started off just cooking and feeding the homeless we see on the streets. Everyday we go to hand out food, we get to talk and learn everyone’s stories. Everyone has different needs, most are really simple such as a food storage box, gloves, socks, a ride to the doctor, etc. ALL need a home, and those who can work want a job. This fund would allow us to spread our concept more effectively by giving us the ability to tape, edit and put interview vdo’s and mini documentaries online, place ads in local/national newspapers/magazines, and send group members to join different causes to spread the message. We’ve been using our personal funds to feed and help the homeless and we’ll continue to do so. But we can do a lot more with this help.

Contextual Research: London Going Green
January 27, 2012, 6:11 pm
Filed under: Extended Major Project

Today I’ve started thinking more about the context of my project. I’ve decided to go with the topic of the environment and sustainability after looking at the Live Earth campaign. I’d like to film my documentary in the same style as I did for the Specialist Project to co-incide with the theme of being discreet. In terms of sustainability and green initiatives, London is one of the most innovative and inspirational cities on Earth.

What is Sustainability?

Sustainability is the capacity to endure. For humans, sustainability is the long-term maintenance of responsibility, which has environmental, economic, and social dimensions, and encompasses the concept of stewardship, the responsible management of resource use. In ecology, sustainability describes how biological systems remain diverse and productive over time, a necessary precondition for human well-being. Long-lived and healthy wetlands and forests are examples of sustainable biological systems.

London has an impressive array of sustainable hotspots as discovered on the Cutting-Edge Green Tour. I’m thinking of going on this tour to discover all these really innovative sustainable places. I think it would be good to get an idea of where all these places are and then use them to put in the documentary.

This is a nice little business set-up  called the KiosKiosk, which is in City Hall. It is a place for small local businesses who normally can’t afford a set-up in a populated area to have a chance to show off their wares and gain customers. It’s an excellent way to promote local creative business start-ups.

This is an impressive looking cafe. It was built as part of a revitalization of a green space near London Bridge. The wood of the building is Siberian softwood, which has all the positive qualities of hardwood but the trees can replenish themselves in just 25 years. It was also constructed in a way to provide extra shade and shelter for people enjoying the nearby lawns.

London Mint Hotel

The Mint hotel near the Tower of London hopes to be one of the most sustainable buildings in London after the unveiling of its green roof and flowering walls.

The living wall is the tallest in Europe, extending the full height of the hotel’s internal courtyard up to the 11th floor.

The walls can be viewed through the glass roof in the reception area and the plants extend upwards from the 9th floor to a green roof.

The green walls will reduce temperatures and water run-off problems. The system is made entirely from recycled plastic and it is hoped this will ultimately work hand-in-hand with a grey-water recycling system.

A total of 4,100 modules were fitted to create the living walls and each module contains 45 planted cells 70mm deep.
Each module is fixed onto a recycled plastic mounting strip and fitted to a steel frame at 500mm centres, which in turn is attached to the rendered wall. The modules were then fixed to the frame, starting from the bottom of the wall and working to the top.

More than 180,000 individual plants were used in the modules and the 40 different species of plants are all evergreen.

Frosts Landscape Construction designed and built the walls working closely on the construction with Bennetts Associates and Laing O’Rourke.

London’s CO2 Emissions

I love this idea of integrating nature into the city. Architecture is a subject I’d like to think about for this project because of all these new innovative ways of providing a more eco-friendly environment. As it stands London’s current carbon emissions are stated in this pie chart.

A breakdown of the biggest contributors to London’s carbon dioxide emissions has been produced by the London Sustainable Development Commission and BioRegional.

Household energy (22 per cent) and personal transport (20 per cent) are the two biggest contributors. But other notable contributors include consumer goods (12 per cent) and food (10 per cent).

According to the analysis, consumption in London results in a total of 90 million tonnes of CO2 being produced every year.

Idea Development
January 27, 2012, 2:17 am
Filed under: Extended Major Project

Name of ApplicationThe Invisible Camera

MediaVideo & Photography 


This app will expand upon the topic from my last video shot on an iPhone entitled, Life Through An iPhone. I’m trying to adapt the concept of watching a conventional documentary through the medium of video, and push it into a new platform as an application for the iPad and iPhone. In the previous post, I’ve looked carrying on creating Hockney styled video shots, which will ultimately be designed as a scene that user can explore freely like they’re looking at a piece of art; therefore developing this idea of a post-digital art gallery.

There will be selection of videos on the left hand side of the screen, however for this project I might only produce one video depending on how much work I’ve set myself with making the application itself. Then once the user has selected their video choice, they will be taken to that video for them to watch.

I’ve been thinking of ways to make the experience of watching a video different. Ideally I’d like to integrate some menus that appear at the bottom of the screen, when video is paused. This will allow the user to view what they’re seeing in a different approach, e.g. Hockney styled and Panoramic videos viewed in a digital art gallery.

Idea for Interface
January 24, 2012, 8:25 pm
Filed under: Extended Major Project

One of the things people liked about my video were the shots that were created in the style of David Hockney. Hockney’s style has been very inspiring for me and I’ve discovered his style with still images works even better with video. I’ve been thinking of a way that it can be more engaging. They were the sort of shots that needed to have more time look at because there were many different things going on in each individual shot.

I’ve been looking at videos of the iPad for some ideas about how I can create an application and what it will look like if I choose to use Adobe’s digital publishing suite. One of the biggest concerns I’m having about using the Adobe software, is the fact it may be to restrictive for what I want to achieve. I feel the overall result will just end up looking like a digital magazine, instead of something more dynamic.

Interface Design

I’ve done a rough sketch of a Hockney styled video scene, as it would be displayed on the iPad. I want the general design of the interface to be visually simplistic. The video scene would be the main feature of the page. There are three isolated buttons, just below the video, audio, play and pause.

I’d like to combine both non-deigetic and diegetic sounds in this scene, however the user will be able to have full control of what they want to hear. The way I’ve been thinking about this particular style of  video is that it’s a piece of art. It needs to be looked at to be really appreciated. I mentioned before that when I created this style in my last video project, they weren’t shown long enough for the audience to take it all in. With this in mind, I feel as if I’m going in a direction for creating a digital art gallery. I don’t want this scene to be integrated into a tightly edited video. I just don’t think it works as well.

Another user functionality that I’d like to develop is the ability to to touch one of the clips so it becomes magnified or full screen for it to be viewed in more detail.

Panoramic Video Shot

At this current I’m not sure if this is going to be the main page of the application or if there will be other scenes of different locations imitating this style as well. I would also like to combine some 3D work and time-lapse videos as well, but I’m trying to refine this idea further to see if I can combine those different media.

Arcade Fire – The Wilderness Downtown
January 24, 2012, 12:47 am
Filed under: Extended Major Project

I have seen this before but was re-introduced to it again by Bob, who I was talking to today about unique approaches to presenting a video. Rock band Arcade Fire, together with Google and artist Chris Milk, launched an interactive video set to the band’s track “We Used to Wait.” Called “The Wilderness Downtown,” the online project makes use of Google Maps and Google Street View to incorporate images of the viewer’s hometown into the video.

Arcade Fire have never really come across as being massively techie in the past, but with their new website they’re fast becoming the most future proof band around. The site is packed full of HTML 5 tricks and creative touches that fit in perfectly with The Suburbs, their new album.

Using HTML 5, which is the next generation of website language script, the fibre that makes website, and it’s going to make them more interactive than they have ever been. If you’ve seen any of the other big experiments into HTML 5 you will probably be massively impressed with its potential. From the flying balls that Google built into their logo last month or the ingenious Tipex video in You Tube, where the characters in the video interact with the rest of the webpage, HTML 5 has already started to change the face of the web.

Viewers begin the experience by providing their childhood address. The video experience then unfolds in multiple windows, taking viewers on a tour of their hometown to the tune of the Arcade Fire track. Users can also write a note to their younger selves in a tree branch-inspired font that is incorporated into the video.

“The Wilderness Downtown” is optimized for Google Chrome and should also run on any browser that supports HTML5.

“We Used to Wait” comes from Arcade Fire’s latest LP The Suburbsand is the second interactive project to come out of that album: A webcast of the band’s recent concert at Madison Square Garden features fan-submitted photos of the suburbs as part of its stage display.

Here is an example of how it all comes together. Also, if you click on the top image of this post, it’ll take you to their website where you can input your own post code and watch a unique personalised music video.

Another nifty surprise that the user can also interact with video by moving the curser in the direction the flying birds in the background of the page makes them fly away in the opposite direction for a start, but if that isn’t enough to impress you, the digital personalisation of their song, We Used to Wait, is nothing short of immersive. You’ll be a little shocked by the results, but it’ll make you connect to the song and the album in a way that otherwise might not have been possible.

Behind the Work: Arcade Fire The Wilderness Downtown’

Click on the above link for more information on the behind the production of this project.

Just by looking at the screen shots you can tell an incredible amount of effort has gone into this piece of work.

This has definitely inspired my to think more out of the box when thinking about how is my video going to be wathed. I would like to explore the possibilities of having multiple shots on one screen, like how Arcade Fire have executed but with the ability to interact by touching or moving the screen by using a tablet device.

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