Archive for the ‘Non-English’ Category

Gorbachev Foundation

Tuesday, 6 February 2007; 10:04

He answered former President Reagan’s call to tear down this wall. In doing so, he effectively ended a war which had occupied my entire lifetime–the Cold War. But, as a man of vision and possibly ahead of his time, Mikhail Gorbachev seems not to now occupy the best of positions in Russian history. That, with the passage of a few more years, may well change–and should. There have been few men as deserving of a memorable place in recent history as Mr. Gorbachev.

Until then, we can still support Mr. Gorbachev through his Gorbachev Foundation. Even better, on March 2, 2007, you can help celebrate a great man’s 76th birthday. Happy Birthday, Mr. Gorbachev. And, thank you.

Home page:  MikhailGorbachev.org
Home page:  Gorbachev Foundation

 

Audi Q7 Globe

Thursday, 25 January 2007; 10:16

Overall, the entire Audi web site is excellent. However, The Distillery will today focus only on Audi’s Q7 Globe automobile. It comes with a V-12 engine and plenty of ground clearance. Supposedly, this is a car for anywhere on the planet. (Does anyone remember when Audi made decidedly boring cars?)

If the automobile is even half as impressive as the Audi Q7 Globe micro-site, it is quite the car. Its web site does almost everything extremely well. It is engaging, interactive, has a virtual human host, different bandwidths, sound on/off, and even offers a downloadable freebie via a video clip of the site’s theme song by Carla Vallet.

Yes, the people at Audi and its advertising agency worked very hard at making this one of the best examples of online advertising for a specific product that The Distillery has seen to date. Explore around and enjoy. Kudos galore to Audi and its Q7 Globe. (Oh, and while you are there, also have a look at the Audi Videocast. It includes footage from motor shows and vehicles other than the Q7.)

Home page:  Audi
Home page (micro-site):  Audi Q7 Globe

       

Level One Design

Sunday, 14 January 2007; 21:07

You will first need to download and install the Virtools 3D Life Player. Afterward, enjoy the 3D design work of the Netherlands design firm, Level One Design. Using your mouse, go ahead and play by dragging the image around. And, be certain to click on the little red button. Nice work, eh? Nice background music, too.

(You know, there may be a good living for a few excellent composers in writing short, but unique background compositions as content-rich and music-themed web sites continue to develop. The music we will see being written might one day be the online equivalent of the now well-known TV jingle.)

Home page:  Level One Design 

Nissan X-Trail (Taiwan)

Monday, 18 December 2006; 12:23

With a name like the Nissan X-Trail, the last thing The Distillery expected was a very modern urban landscape being used as a visual background. However, given the vast majority of Taiwanese who can likely afford the X-Trail probably live in the cities instead of Taiwan’s eastern rugged mountains, the high-rise skyscraper backdrop makes sense.

In addition, those same Taiwanese urbanites are not likely to take the X-Trail anywhere near real Land Rovers or true all-terrain vehicles might go. That is why the terrain-handling demonstration contained within this ad is all the more unusual. It is held in a city park with steel obstacles and tracks! (The demonstration is not easy to find. At the top of the micro-site index page, click on the very last link at the top right of the menu. Then click on the smaller photos at the bottom of that page for the driving demonstration.) If that contrived demonstration does not sell X-Trails to wealthier Taiwanese looking to get over speed bumps, nothing will.

Home page:  Nissan X-Trail

Nissan X-Trail - Taiwain

Pantech & RAIN

Thursday, 19 October 2006; 12:16

Okay, so I’m actually looking for a new cell phone after having the present one for five years. One brand I saw compatible with my carrier was Pantech, which is new to me. So, what about its online advertising? I decided that would determine if Pantech would be among my evoked set at purchase time. So, in search of a cell phone . . .

The Distillery instead found RAIN’s first Chinese M/V with Pantech. Also found is one soulful Japanese crooner and a superb dancer. I’ve read mixed reviews about Pantech’s phones, but this promotional music video is absolutely superb. And, how often do you get to select either simplified or traditional Chinese as your subtitles? (Anyone having luck getting into the Chinese version of the site? Although the video is perfectly clean and wholesome, maybe it’s still being “sanitized” by the Chinese government.)

Folks, this one really works. I’m almost ready to diss all the mixed reviews for Pantech cell phones simply because I’m listening to a well-chosen and very pleasant soundtrack right now. Michael Jackson, you may have brought us the moonwalk, but The Distillery is forecasting RAIN. (And yes, that logo below is just the way it was found. Anyone else notice an “E” missing?)

By the way, those interested might also wish to have a gander at the Pantech’s Russian “Your Phone is Too Fat” microsite. Isn’t it becoming a wonderfully small world?

Home page:  Pantech
Home page:  Pantech and RAIN M/V Promotion Site

RAIN

SailingNews.tv

Tuesday, 17 October 2006; 11:12

SippinWhisky’s Distillery calls its readers’ attentions to SailingNews.tv. If you are stuck in your office or somewhere in the landlocked midwest United States, this is the next best thing to being on the water–or other–found to date. (Note: This site is French, but The Distillery will overlook that.)

Home page:  SailingNews.tv

SailingNews.tv course map graphic

Weichai Power Co., Ltd. (China)

Monday, 11 September 2006; 15:16

Were The Distillery xenophobic, China would be scaring the dickens out of it right now. There is no doubt that China is becoming a dominant player in the world’s markets–military, space exploration, political, economic, and otherwise. That assessment seems very evident when looking at Weichai Power, a manufacturer of diesel engines in China’s Shandong province. One finds an interesting mix of both Oriental and Occidental at its web site.

Although the voice-over is in Chinese, the firm uses images of famous Western scientists–Archimedes, Newton, and Einstein–in an online video promotion. The Distillery finds that interesting considering all of the inventions by the Chinese themselves. (To name only a few–the abacus, paper, Indian ink, gunpowder, and the compass.) Clearly, Weichai Power is looking beyond China’s national borders and out to the larger world market for buyers of its diesel engines. And quite frankly, given labor costs in China, Weichai Power’s engines may well be excellent engines at prices western firms will have difficulty matching.

Even more, it appears the Chinese government is using the firm and their close relationship to tout China’s every-increasing modernization. For example, have a look at this television ad which highlights China’s beautiful new passenger train (powered by Weichai diesel engines), wind farms, construction projects, and modern cities. And quite frankly, that is a bit scary. Is China not doing the same as Japan by closely partnering private enterprise with government? Will that provide China essentially the same advantages enjoyed by Japanese firms with their close government and national banking ties? The likely answer is yes.

Caterpillar, meet Weichai, your newest nemesis–or partner, if you’re smart.

Home page:  Weichai Power Co., Ltd.

Weichai Power logo graphic

Weichai executives diesel graphic

Eveready (Energizer.com)

Wednesday, 23 August 2006; 14:45

First, the bunny has been found in its proper place at Energizer.com. It must be an evil albino twin which has gone over to the dark side at Duracell. Also found is a firm clearly more aware of its markets and potential customers, and the internet.

One of the first things noticed are contests which are easy to enter. There’s no chasing an animated gif. In fact, the user is given complete navigation control. With only that, Eveready is obviously less clueless than one of its major competitors. In fact, this single page at Energizer.com reflects almost all that is missing at one of its competitor’s sites. (Note: We’re not mentioning any names.)

In addition, one will find a learning center with advice for emergencies, projects for kids, and [silent] demonstrations of how batteries are made and work. But best of all, we find multimedia content. Granted, it appears to be rehashed TV ads, but we’ve always enjoyed those Energizer Bunny ads, haven’t we? And, The Distillery will give a few points for the Hispanic-targeted ads. (Note: The “Runner” ad can also easily service the locale it presents. In less developed countries without widespread and modern utility infrastructures, batteries are the primary source of power.)

However, this is the internet and 30 seconds cannot be more than .03 nanoseconds in internet time. Where is the 2-5 minute engaging online promotion? Is this it? Or is it this pitch for a flashlight? No, each of those is only 1.5 minutes long and pretty much all else to be found. Close, but no cigar. So although Eveready’s online presence is better than at least one of its competitors, it appears the battery industry isn’t that charged-up about the internet just yet.

Home page: Energizer.com

Daylight Savings Time reminder graphicEnergizer bunny graphic

NEC Personal Robot Research Center (Japan)

Tuesday, 22 August 2006; 12:10

Apparently hidden away in the same underground chamber Japanese physicists and others from around the world have been using to detect very rare elemental physics particles is the NEC Personal Robot Research Center. There we find the R100, NEC’s first personal robot.

It’s only a prototype, but it still has big ambitions. It one day hopes to live with you at home as a useful and lovable partner. Let’s just hope its programming includes Isaac Asimov’s Three Laws of Robotics. (You don’t know what they are? Then hold off on buying any robot. You would not want a robot without them.) In fact, NEC itself still knows very little about the robot’s future, as evidenced by a FAQ with FA (few answers). The robot’s color scheme has also not yet been determined, but it seems NEC is open to consumers’ suggestions.

Those issues aside, let’s have a peek at NEC’s proposed additions to a Jetsons family lifestyle. The first video explains NEC’s aims and hopes in developing the personal robot. The second video summarizes what the R100 can do.

Home page: NEC Personal Robot Research Center
Home page: NEC Laboratories

NEC Personal Robot graphic 01 NEC Personal Robot graphic 02 NEC Labs Personal Robot logo graphic

NEC Labs notebook graphic 01NEC Labs notebook graphic 02

NEC Labs logo graphic

Brazilian Girls

Monday, 21 August 2006; 20:03

I know what your first thought was when you saw the post’s title. Shame! You will find no girls gone wild in this posting, but you will discover some interesting music. Anyone signed by Verve has to have something going for them.

It’s not easy to fully categorize the Brazilian Girls’ music, but maybe that’s why The Distillery likes it. There is even the surprise of some songs in French and which are pleasant, even if the lead singer of the Brazilian Girls is no Edit Piaf. And, The Distillery likes the Brazilian Girls for their online videos.

Home page: Brazilian Girls
Home page: Verve – Brazilian Girls

Brazilian Girls photo graphic

Budweiser Budvar (Czech Republic)

Tuesday, 8 August 2006; 11:52

Budweiser, again? Yes, but this time it is the real Budweiser, and the firm with which Anheuser-Busch is fighting over the legal and international rights to the Budweiser name. (Give it up, Bud. It’s theirs!) From all accounts, the Budweiser beer sold in the United States is but a mere shadow of the Budweiser Budvar brand originally (and still) produced in the Czech Republic. (Might that be something like a Louisiana Po’Boy sandwich from Iceland, or sushi from equatorial Africa?)

But what about Budweiser Budvar’s marketing? Budvar clearly does not have the marketing budget of its American nemesis. However, that does not mean its advertising is the equivalent of “Advertising Lite.” The millions and millions of US dollars may not be there, but some excellent online content is. Have a look at Budvar.TV. Once inside, click on the large animated graphic at the top of the page. Revealed will be a different sort of game. (Would someone please tell us what’s going on with that? ‘Tis very much a puzzlement to The Distillery.)

We also find a few videos from around the world, some games (registration required), and quite a number of Budweiser Budvar’s television commercials. There are jokes, but The Distillery is finding it needed to be there to understand them and/or their punchlines. And last, but not least, we find Bob & Dave and their own videos. (Help! Is anybody out there that can translate any of this?)

Home page: Budweiser Budvar
Home page: Budvar.TV
Home page: Bob & Dave

Budvar beer graphic 01 Budvar beer graphic 02

Garfield 2 (Czech Republic)

Tuesday, 8 August 2006; 10:53

Now where is that translator page? Never mind, the gist is easily ascertained in the Czech Republic release of the movie, Garfield 2. Even more, there aren’t any easily found online translators for Czech to English. So instead, we’ll just let our curiosities lead us.

Should you be planning on traveling overseas and cannot bear the thought of missing Garfield 2, you might take along the worldwide opening dates. You might even consider joining the Worldwide Whisker Web. Or, how about an online Garfield coloring book with virtual crayons?

Home page (Czech Republic): Garfield 2
Home page (Czech Republic): Garfield soccer game
Home page (Czech Republic): Garfield coloring book
Home page (U.S.A.): Garfield: A Tale of Two Kitties

Garfield movie banner graphic