Archive for May 8th, 2006

Sea Launch (Boeing)

Monday, 8 May 2006; 13:10

Who knew? Of course we know about Cape Canaveral at the Kennedy Space Center and Vandenberg Air Force Base, but Sea Launch? However, did you really think NASA’s space shuttles were wasting their time with the launching of commercial television satellites? Nah, no way with Iran, Korea, and the so-called Axis of Evil needing every watchful eye (i.e., spy satellites) this administration can muster.

Enter Sea Launch for DIRECTV, EchoStar, and other private ventures. Sea Launch is the world’s only commercial ocean-based space launch platform. With the increasing privatization of space, it may well be not so very far off that we in fact do see Google teaming up with Wicked Lasers to place its well-known words-only unobtrusive ads in the sky.

Sea Launch pic

2006 Raindance Film Festival

Monday, 8 May 2006; 12:03

Having been pointed to the Fourteenth Raindance Film Festival by Diesel, let us look at the festival’s promotional trailer for 2006.

(And is it just me, or does it also seem to others that the Japanese are beginning to take over the internet with some really wonderful content?)

Raindance Festival banner

iKarma review of SippinWhisky’s Distillery (more shameless self-promotion)

Monday, 8 May 2006; 11:30

Honesty and openness are sometimes undervalued traits – many would prefer to hide the past, rather than to allow others to freely and publicly record it for all to see. By creating an iKarma Profile, SippinWhisky’s Distillery has demonstrated a firm commitment to maintaining a responsible and sincere reputation online. Such people, both rare and precious, are a credit to both business and society.

We believe that integrity should be rewarded. The iKarma team is happy to welcome SippinWhisky’s Distillery to our service with our own five-star review.


Monday, 8 May 2006; 11:09

We have visited Diesel previously. On our second visit, we find Diesel has not been simply sitting on its jeans, but instead has been hard at work. This time we find Camouflage Tales. The campaign’s implication is that one remains invisible unless wearing Diesel clothing. Only by spending ridiculous sums of money on designer jeans and clothing is one able to stand out from the crowd. And to make a long story short, boy gets girl.

The primary quibble I have about this site is again navigation. Macromedia Flash is clearly taking over the internet when it comes to multimedia presentations, and as I have previously noted, rightly so. However, it seems some web designers are still wrestling with, or simply do not understand, the need for ease of navigation around a Flash-powered web site. (Some web site design lessons I thought were learned years and years ago.) This Diesel site proceeds in a fairly linear progression, which makes sense considering the storyline, but it also removes too much control over navigation from the viewer (a.k.a. consumer).

Given that, I found the sight a tad boring in the sense of waiting for things to happen. That is only slightly ameliorated by the viewer’s interaction with the site via his/her mouse. Although this is a wonderful effort by Diesel, the entire message may never be seen by a viewer without plenty of time to waste.

So remember good readers, one major attribute that should be a component of online campaigns is allowing viewers greater control over what they see and when. After all, this is not your grandfather’s television set. Instead of merely switching channels if bored (and then not infrequently returning), they switch to another web site–permanently.

One more thing. While you are at the Diesel main page, click on Talent Support and then Raindance Film Festival (sponsored by Diesel). Once there, sit back and enjoy the 2005 Festival’s winning film, Right Place. It is quite excellent.

Diesel successful living logo


Monday, 8 May 2006; 9:47

How about some British humor approaching the weirdness of Monty Python’s Flying Circus? Altoids, The Original Celebrated Curiously Strong mints, entertains us with The Altoids Entertainment Extravaganza. And if there is one thing I can sometimes admire, it is consistency. The Altoids site wallows in consistency by being as curious as are the mints it promotes.

Then again, being too curious can have its disadvantages. I am curious as to why the site seems to work so poorly, especially navigation-wise. Maybe it is on too slow a server. Maybe it is my browser’s security settings, but I am stuck on the pinball game page and cannot escape! (Hint: If clicking on the links does not work, use your browser’s “Back” navigation button to escape from pinball hell.) I am also curious about the rationale for providing games, but no instructions on how to play them. But again, that could be me. I have only very few precious times played any sort of video games. (Hint: For the pinball game, use your “Shift” and “Ctrl” keys to manipulate the flippers. Use the “space bar” to put the ball into play.)

Any and all problems aside, stop in and enjoy a bawdy Vaudeville-esque and semi-burlesque break from your day. Be certain not to miss The Amazing Bend-O. ‘Tis indeed curious fun. (And where have they been hiding the ginger flavor? I want!)

Altoids Ginger Mints box