Things of note for the week ending Friday March 20th, 2015.
1. GEENA DAVIS IS AWESOME
There’s a lot to like about this ‘Geena Davis is still locked and loaded‘ piece from Bloomberg. This is just one example:
It wasn’t until she had a daughter, she said, and started watching kids’ movies with her, that the lack became clear. Davis noticed how few female characters appeared—sometimes only a mother, and it was weirdly common for that mother to die in the first scene. (“If we want to actually achieve parity,” she ribbed, “we have to start killing fathers.”) Davis canvassed, and realized her friends weren’t noticing, either. “And when I started bringing it up within my industry,” she said, “it wasn’t just that they weren’t noticing, they were sure that the problem had been fixed.”
I’d recommend you read the whole thing.
2. PROBABLY THE BEST / ONLY PHONE WALLPAPERS YOU’LL EVER NEED
Yeah, helluva title that.
American designer and artist, Molly Mcleod, designed these gorgeous wallpapers and I picked them up from PSFK earlier last week.
I’m running the ‘STOP LOOKING AT YOUR PHONE’ one at the moment and it actually works. So yeah, these (and the others like them) are super recommended.
Get these and more, direct from Molly’s website.
3. TAKE ME TO CHURCH
This Ellie Goulding cover is quite something.
And hey, while we’re at it, why not watch this awesome video too?
4. WHAT’S MISSING FROM THIS 13-YEAR-OLD GIRL’S HOMESCREEN?
This has been doing the rounds a fair bit today so I thought, just in case you hadn’t seen it yet, I’d share it with you.
Basically, just under a week ago, a venture capitalist by the name of Bijan Sabet tweeted a photo of his daughter’s homescreen.
This is what it looks like:
Notice what’s missing?
Yup. Me too.
If this kind of thing is new to you then I’d recommend reading the QZ article that I found this on as it links to a few supporting documents on the how and the why.
Whatever you do with this information, at least acknowledge how darn interesting it is.
5. SXSW INTERACTIVE
(the view, behind me, from my front row seat to see Astro Teller)
I got back on Thursday morning and I have to say, SXSWi 2015 has probably made it into my top five all time top / favourite conferences ever. EVER.
Outside of the trends, updates, and lessons that I learnt from the daily lectures, panels, and interactive sessions (most of which I’ve already written up elsewhere (see: ‘Retail Revival’ for The Guardian and ‘Postcard from Day 5 @ SXSW‘ for The Drum), quite a few other [non-work-related] amazing things happened.
And, after taking a quick straw poll on Twitter on Wednesday, here’s a special SXSW-flavoured five things in your five things on Friday, just for you:
SXSW thing 1: OLD FRIENDS
After talking to each other on the Internet for nigh-on eight years, Mr Ricky Cadden (the original Symbian-Guru) and I finally met. What a great night that was.
^ This is 100% my happy place ^
SXSW thing 2: NEW FRIENDS
After fanboying over her website for a year and a bit I finally met ‘digital strategist’, author of Social-Creature, and all round super brain, Jenka Gurfinkel, and that too was a blast. We hung out with mermaids, we danced, we talked ABOUT OUR WRITING PROCESS (‘What do you mean you do layouts?’ – ‘What? Why do you think my stuff is so good?’ – ‘What?’), and then we ate tacos.
Basically: winning at life.
Although it must be said, never more has the phrase ‘England and America are two nations divided by a common language’ been more truthful (I think we spent 50% of all conversation explaining what it was we were trying to say the first time around).
New friendships rock.
As does the Internet.
But you know this, right? That’s why you’re here. Right?
SXSW thing 3: ALL OF THE MUSIC
After spending nearly all of last summer trying to see them live in London, I finally managed to catch FUTURE ISLANDS live in Austin (thanks Spredfast).
They were so so so so so so so SO GOOD.
To top it off, they were supporting The Flaming Lips – who were also amazing. I don’t know if I mentioned it in a previous Five Things but Sony sent me an Xperia Z3 to try out a while back and the photos that took throughout that gig totally blew my mind.
I’m thinking about entering this one into some kind of competition.
SXSW thing 4: ROBOTS
Out back in the exhibition hall you can find all kinds of wonders. I ran into Jon Andrews while I was there and he said ‘You have to go see the crazy Japanese guys with all their robots; you’ll love it!’ I did, and Jon was right.
3D-printed, iPhone-controlled robots. Amazing.
There was also this guy that had this robotic arm. Like something out of Age of Ultron (Intel has photos and videos); it was as incredible as it was humbling. I turned to my company and said ‘We are living in the future!’ – the one thing I didn’t do was say ‘Oh man! Your robot arm is COOL!’ – because y’know, having an actual arm would be cooler.
SXSW thing 5: PEACE
Buried a hatchet yesterday. Felt good. Life’s too short, kids.
— James Whatley (@Whatleydude) March 17, 2015
And there’s not much more I can add to that.
So there you have it: SXSW Interactive, a place for learning, excitement, and amazing friendships both old and new. I’ve got a ton of notes to write up and a fair few presentations to give back to the office over the coming weeks to boot.
But between the sessions on Twitter, Big Data, and all that future gazing – I found time to reflect, rewind, and refresh my perspective on a few things.
Life is good.
Have a great weekend, my friends.
Bonuses come this week in the form of three trailers.
- Here’s a fresh 1min trailer for Age of Ultron made up of 90% completely new footage (warning: definite money shots here you might want to save for the cinema). Got my tickets. You got yours?
- Next up is a Japanese trailer for MAD MAX: FURY ROAD. So. Excited.
- Finally, this trailer for the video game, EVE ONLINE, is old but still awesome.
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