After watching this, I had to share it here. There are several excellent 3D illusions, a shoe shot that is almost as good, and a cat pretending to be 3D. Thanks to Vulture for the heads up on this one.
While this is a nice little astronomy video, it isn’t really about the stars at all. When you go to the 100,000 Stars web site the really interesting thing is the demonstration of WebGL. Currently WebGL is implemented by default in the latest release of Chrome, and it is available in Safari, Firefox, and Opera, but you have to turn it on to use it (get activation instructions). I am sure no one is going to be shocked or surprised that WebGL also requires a fairly robust and recent graphics card, and even with that you may need to grab the latest drivers for it. While this should work on most tablets, smart phone implementation is still problematic.
From the web site Space Facts, this little infographic gives a very clean representation of the relative sizes of the planets in our solar system. I think if they would have included Pluto its size compared to the others would have made the not-a-planet argument obvious.
The 10th Visual Effects Society Awards were handed out this past Tuesday, and as is often the case, a small number of shows got several awards each. Transformers: Dark of the Moon seemed to get the most (no, I didn’t count them, so I could be wrong), but Hugo, the animated Rango, the semi-animated live action Rise of the Planet of the Apes, and various episodes of Game of Thrones walked away with more than one each. But there were a number of projects that got a single award each, such as Captain America, and this little gem here, called A. Maize, which was awarded Outstanding Visual Effects in a Student Project
The folks at io9 have put together a fun little chart graphing the science fiction after Star Trek (TOS). It goes rather nicely with one they posted a week ago, a timeline of Time Travel, which shows the start and end jumps of many fictional time travelers. Doctor Who was left off the chart, or you wouldn’t be able to see any of the other travelers (he may get his own chart later). Paste has a small but accurate chart comparing the Best and Worst of SF: District 9 vs. Plan 9 that you might also enjoy. To see more Chart Porn, stop by Information is Beautiful.
Cory Doctorow worried that folks might not find the 404 Wine Bar for his pre-Play performance meet-and-greet the other night in Chicago. But everyone can find his latest story, serialized at TOR Online, and read it as each chapter gets uploaded. The story is Makers, and for those of us who get cross-eyed after staring at the screen for 18 hours a day it will come out in print in the fall (what date in the fall is a variable dependent on which continent you live on). Or perhaps for those of us who can’t wait for the serialization to finish up in Jan 2010. But there is an extra, Online-Level draw on this one; the images with each chapter! Download and collect them all, then download the Flash/Java App that will allow you to create your own image structure for the story. This is the extended (I.E., Complete) story originally told on Salon as ThemePunks. Now you can finally find out how it turns out! The folks at Barnstorming are doing the graphics, and they are building them to inter-connect. Which means the Flash App, whenever it gets released online, will allow you to take the various tiles and build your own cover for the book. All in all, this looks like a fun ride!