Archive for the 'Video' Category


Sunday, January 11th, 2009

As some of you know, I’m a huge turtle fan. I just came across this video that should explain why one might become a turtle fan. Although the ones I had when I was little weren’t of this variety, they were this size. Too cute for words.

Which one?

Wednesday, October 8th, 2008

That bit was hard to miss, but I hadn’t noticed the refusal of the handshake. Ouch.

Interesting subway scene

Sunday, July 20th, 2008

The folks who brought you Frozen Grand Central now bring you Human Mirror. These ideas are great and they do a good job with them. Fun stuff!

What have you been watching on YouTube lately?

Thursday, July 3rd, 2008

I am rushing off to meetings, but this is disturbing news and I figured folks around here would want to know about it.

From the Electronic Frontier Foundation by Kurt Opsahl (posted July 2nd):

    Yesterday, in the Viacom v. Google litigation, the federal court for the Southern District of New York ordered Google to produce to Viacom (over Google’s objections):

    all data from the Logging database concerning each time a YouTube video has been viewed on the YouTube website or through embedding on a third-party website

    The court’s order grants Viacom’s request and erroneously ignores the protections of the federal Video Privacy Protection Act (VPPA), and threatens to expose deeply private information about what videos are watched by YouTube users. The VPPA passed after a newspaper disclosed Supreme Court nominee Robert Bork’s video rental records. As Congress recognized, your selection of videos to watch is deeply personal and deserves the strongest protection.

    Rest of EFF post

Various MSM sources are just starting to roll out their own coverage (e.g., BBC).

I guess those – must be many – who watch YouTube without a user ID or without logging in to the service have less to lose, but forget the privacy of the more avid and loyal users.

As to the source code, Google does get to keep that. It’s interesting to see which news item (the user ID issue vs source code) is being covered where.

Videos on the tubes of the internets

Sunday, June 22nd, 2008

Time Sink!

If you have some time to kill or need to introduce someone to Internet memes then take a look at this timeline. [Link no longer works.] Zoom in for some of the less visible videos. Any of your favorites missing?
UPDATE: Well, that didn’t last long. A commenter notes that the page is no longer accessible. Here is a screenshot. Use of Dipity for this was interesting since showing all this on a time line adds something to the list.

Congrats to this person

Monday, April 7th, 2008

I didn’t know Brian Donovan until I saw this video he posted on YouTube after which I feel like I know him a tiny bit. He’s an alum of the Northwestern Sociology Department and he’d been involved with the excellent Culture Workshop that I attend whenever I can. That’s how I heard about his tenure and this fun way in which he’s decided to let people know about it. Congrats, Brian!

This is a very cute GMail how-to video

Wednesday, February 27th, 2008

More here on what went into creating it. I love the care with details like the cursor and the stars.

If you’re looking for a laugh (or a cry)

Sunday, January 20th, 2008

I suspect most have already seen the famous episode of the Miss Teen USA South Carolina contestant’s answer to a geography-related question . (By the way, amazing performance by the host holding the microphone. Could you keep a straight face through that?)

This one seems a bit less well known (if you can say that about a clip that’s been watched 4 million times on YouTube):

The host here is much less impressive (note his commentary in general, and pronunciation of a certain country name in particular). The little boy looks adorable though.

There’s more along similar lines, for example this Family Feud episode.

Bubble 2.0 music video

Wednesday, December 5th, 2007

I realize that some of the references in this video require a fairly intimate knowledge of the Silicon Valley scene, but not all so perhaps this will add a bit of amusement to your day regardless of your geek quotient.

Video of talk at the Berkman Center

Saturday, November 3rd, 2007

As I mentioned earlier, I gave a talk at Harvard Law School’s Berkman Center for Internet and Society the other day. The folks at Berkman have kindly posted a video of the talk and discussion. Some interesting issues came up in the Q&A leading to an engaging conversation so I recommend that part in particular. (The talk itself was relatively short, less than 25 minutes, followed by over half an hour of discussion.)

A good recipe for cookies?

Monday, October 29th, 2007

A few weeks ago the Berkman Center for Internet and Society posted an interesting contest: create a short informative video about Web cookies and have the chance to win up to $5,000 and a trip to DC where the video would then be shown at the FTC’s Town Hall workshop on “Ehavioral Advertising“.

I’m afraid we’re past the deadline for submissions and I apologize for posting about this so late (life intervened and I got behind on a bunch of things). I wanted to post about it nonetheless, because I think it’s an interesting initiative and the resulting videos are available for viewing.

I was very intrigued by this contest given my interest in improving people’s Internet user skills. What would be a good way to communicate the concept of a Web cookie to folks who have little technical background? I haven’t looked at all of the submissions, but the ones I’ve seen I find are still too technical and are likely only comprehensible to those who already know at least a few things about Internet cookies. Alternatively, the clips are too vague and so likely have limited utility for that reason. I was a bit surprised and disappointed that people didn’t do more with the cookie analogy. Some of the videos have related cute/amusing components, but not incorporated in a particularly effective way. However, note that I have not watched all of the submitted videos so I may have missed some gems. Feel free to post links to ones you think are especially informative. I think the timeline for submissions was a bit short (I know there were particular logistical reasons for this), which may have prevented more people from getting involved and may have limited the amount of effort that could go into creation of the entries.

An interesting aside about how YouTube posts videos (assuming I understand this correctly, but I haven’t explored this aspect in depth so feel free to correct me): it seems that the creator of the video has little say over what becomes the thumbnail image for the clip. As far as I can tell, the frame is taken from the middle of the video, which is not always ideal as it’s not necessarily the most informative segment.

Apple’s iRack

Thursday, July 5th, 2007

YouTube’s search not yet powered by Google

Wednesday, December 6th, 2006

Andrew Sullivan posts a copy of this compilation of AT&T ads from 1993 predicting the future. They did a great job predicting what is today available to many. And remember, 1993 was the year when the first Windows-based browser was released helping along wide public access to the Web. But at that point little of this was obvious.

I wanted to find the video on YouTube directly. I didn’t realize you could just get to the specific YouTube page by clicking on the video window anywhere but the play button so I proceeded by searching for it on YouTube. I got one result (not the right one) for at&t 1993. A search for at&t ads didn’t give me this hit either.

At that point, I decided to just click on Share in the YouTube player (which annoyingly resizes my entire browser window) and tweak the URL from share to view to get to the page. That’s one way to do it (but again, clicking anywhere but the play button is probably the easiest if you already have the video of interest:). If you don’t have the specific video then it seems best to do a site-specific search for the video on Google as such: at&t 1993. I wonder when YouTube search will be powered by Google given the acquisition.

The latest in online video sharing

Friday, December 1st, 2006

An important aspect of scientific research is that others should be able to reproduce the work. This is significant partly, because it serves as a check on the system, but also, because it allows others to build on previous achievements. Replication is not trivial to achieve, however, given that studies often rely on complex methodologies. There is rarely enough room in journal articles or books to devote sufficiently detailed descriptions of how data were collected and procedures administered. Moreover, even with adequate space for text, many actions are hard to explain without visuals.

This is where recently launched JoVE comes to the rescue. The Journal of Visual Experiments publishes short videos of procedures used in biology labs. Former Princeton graduate student Moshe Pritsker created the peer-reviewed online journal with Nikita Bernstein. The inspiration came back in his graduate school days when he had often been frustrated in the lab while trying to conduct experiments based on others’ descriptions of the necessary methods. The goal of the journal is to assist others with such tasks. The publication has an editorial board and submissions are reviewed before a decision is made about publication.

What a great use of the Web for dissemination of material that would otherwise be difficult to get to relevant parties. [Thanks to Mark Brady for pointing me to the Nature article – that is now behind subscription wall – about JoVE. That piece served as the source for some of the above.]

Yahoo! Hack Day

Saturday, September 30th, 2006

Taking advantage of my Silicon Valley location this year, I decided to go check out Yahoo! Hack Day (it’s actually a two-day event so I’ll be back for more today).

Hundreds of people showed up for the opportunity to spend a day adding functionality to various Yahoo! products such as Flickr, and now even Yahoo! Mail. The demos of these creations will be this afternoon (Saturday) where we’ll get to hear 90-second descriptions of the hacks. It sounds fun and exciting especially to someone like me who’s such a fan of some of Yahoo!’s products.

The event organization so far has been impressive with clear directions, plenty of parking, fast registration and some fun swag. Yesterday was filled with various presentations culminating in a pizza dinner and then a live concert. I finally met Lifehacker Gina Trapani in person and hung out for a while. This was fun since despite having written for Lifehacker in the past, we’ve never met in person.

The surprise of the evening was the Beck concert (see a recent interview in Wired as to why he was an especially appropriate selection for this event). The performance included puppet versions of all the artists projected onto the screen behind the stage. It was great. You can find photos of the concert on Flickr (mine, others’) and there’s also a Yahoo! video not of the concert, but of the Beck puppet’s visit to Sunnyvale. Google gets most of the attention for being a fun place to work, but Yahoo!’s campus seems quite fun as well, something I already noted when giving a talk there two years ago.

Yahoo!’s Hot Zone

Thursday, September 29th, 2005

Yahoo! has launched a new site: Hot Zone featuring the first news correspondent of its own: Kevin Sites. Sites will transmit news from around the world – mostly from areas underreported by the mainstream press – using various forms of media to Hot Zone readers. The articles often come with accompanying photo essays, audio or video material. Comments are open (for those with a Yahoo! ID, which readers can get for free) on the pieces so readers can contribute to the content.

Pizza, cholesterol check, the works

Tuesday, July 20th, 2004

This little Flash movie by the ACLU about the loss of privacy is hilarious and, of course, scary at the same time.