He stood so still

He stood so still while the world moved on around him. Just a little animated gif made from two shots I took walking past this gentleman staring so intently at his phone. He didn’t move a bit but because I was walking the shot shifted some allowing me to animate it and give you this 3D feel. I know I’ve seen this before but my memory of the name for it is hazy. It did lead me to stereoscopy, stereo photography and animated stereograms so sometimes a bad memory leads to good things. And it turns out at least one person would call this a stereoscopic animated gif. I also figured this was a #ds106 assignment and was not disappointed. Since this was the first #ds106 assignment I’ve done in a long while, I threw in a tutorial as a form of tithing. I do all of this of my own free will and in spite of Jim Groom’s personality rather than because of it.

Losing Arguments Cards

I’ve always found the following use of Godwin’s Law to be an interesting idea. For example, there is a tradition in many newsgroups and other Internet discussion forums that once such a comparison is made, the thread is finished and whoever mentioned the Nazis has automatically lost whatever debate was in progress.[8] This principle is itself frequently referred to as Godwin’s law. I ran into one a week or two ago at VCU’s online summit. Someone literally said to me “Well, I’m older.” My response was something like “You’re really going to play that card?” and so Losing Arguments Cards has been in my head ever since. The following is my homage to this particular losing strategy. There was a time when merely surviving to old age meant you were wiser than just about anyone. You could find food during famine. You knew the poisonous berries and where to find good water. You survived the bears, wolves, and radioactive cannibals. You earned respect by simply not dying . . . However, we live in a civilization. There are legions of people dedicated to keeping you from dying of your own stupidity. Things are labeled poisonous even if no one in their right mind would ever eat them. We killed most every animal that might eat you. Maybe you learned something […]

“Truth” through omission

The mission is “Truth” through omission. Can you get at the underlying truth of a historical document through blackout poetry? Blackout poetry has been fairly popular for a while1 but I haven’t seen any done on historical documents with the intent to get at a deeper, if fairly melodramatic, “truth”. I decided to use The Gulf of Tonkin Resolution. It makes for a pretty interesting way to interact with a dry document and requires a pretty close, and repeated, reading. I like the idea of redaction being a way to expose, rather than hide, things the government would rather not have said. The text from above . . . The United States of America in violation of the principles of the of the Charter of the United Nations and of international law, have deliberately and repeatedly attacked the Communist regime in North Vietnam the United States has territorial, military, political ambitions in that area desires the Congress approves the United States regards the Constitution its obligations reasonable assured except that it may be terminated earlier by concurring resolution of the Congress. 1 It appears Austin Kleon invented the idea in 2010 which seems crazy.

Like Fish in Water

This Ted Nelson quote seemed like a fun one to try to visualize. I was inspired by this set of minimalist quote posters and found this DS106 assignment that fit the topic pretty well. I used white circles over a blue square to make the waves. Not mind shattering, but a quick easy way to do it that might get some people to think differently. This allows me to adjust them easily after the fact which a number of other ways to do this would not have allowed. I drew the goldfish in Keynote. I really, really need to break myself of that habit but I’ve grown to like the vector drawing in that program despite the many, many shortfalls it has on other levels.

Patents Pending

I saw the reprint/remakes of famous patents for sale on a site a while ago and then today I saw them on My Modern Met which resulted in the example below and a new #ds106 assignment. I remembered that Google lets you browse all kinds of patents and I spent a chunk of time searching for all sorts of patents. It is a fun place. It’s worth keeping in mind that even if there isn’t a thumbnail there are still images. You can also sort by age if you’re looking for older/newer material or look by inventor or company. My first goal was to find something interesting. I look at everything from lightbulbs to submarines but eventually settled on this machine gun. It reminded me of a video game it was so massive looking. That got me the image below. I put it in Photoshop and attempted to improve things using mainly brightness/contrast but wasn’t thrilled with the results. They didn’t look much different that what you see above. So I put it in Illustrator and ran a live trace with the black and white logo as the base setting and touched it up a bit. That improved things some. Not perfect in terms of the lettering but good enough for my purposes here. The next step was to add […]

Chimeratic Composition

Another quick #ds106 assignment (tags – VisualAssignments, VisualAssignments1257) Take at least three pictures (your own or someone else’s) mash them together into something that makes them more than the sum of their parts, something that would have been impossible in real life. Include the original images so we can see how they build on one another to make your final composition. This was somewhat inspired by the Russian photographer1 images that were floating about (may or may not be amalgams) and a bit like this Modern Met post.2 Here’s my attempt. Sources below- all shots I took at random times without any real purpose. cc licensed ( BY NC ) flickr photo shared by Tom Woodward cc licensed ( BY SA ) flickr photo shared by Tom Woodward cc licensed ( BY SA ) flickr photo shared by Tom Woodward cc licensed ( BY SA ) flickr photo shared by Tom Woodward 1 Some sites called her a “Russian mother” which is kind of like calling Einstein a “former patent clerk” – they’re both true statements yet neglect most of the truth. 2 There’s room for an additional assignment or bonus points for adding elements from classical paintings.


Inspired by (or copying depending on your perspective) this Modern Met post. Apophenia Find something in your house. Take a picture. Let your imagination churn. Make as many different augmented versions as you can think of. Help others see what’s in your head. Submit it on DS106 using the tags VisualAssignments and VisualAssignments1255. cc licensed ( BY SA ) flickr photo shared by Tom Woodward cc licensed ( BY SA ) flickr photo shared by Tom Woodward cc licensed ( BY SA ) flickr photo shared by Tom Woodward cc licensed ( BY SA ) flickr photo shared by Tom Woodward cc licensed ( BY SA ) flickr photo shared by Tom Woodward cc licensed ( BY SA ) flickr photo shared by Tom Woodward cc licensed ( BY SA ) flickr photo shared by Tom Woodward cc licensed ( BY SA ) flickr photo shared by Tom Woodward cc licensed ( BY SA ) flickr photo shared by Tom Woodward

Museum Remixes

After seeing Alan’s post . . . This is a response to the Tate’s call for their 1840s GIF party — they have made images available from selected pieces of art from their 1840s room and inviting anyone to remix as a GIF. That is such a good idea I made it into a ds106 assignment. It is interesting to see how museums and libraries are using social media in fairly different ways. I’d been impressed with Iowa’s Special Collections Tumblr and this idea by the Tate is certainly something you wouldn’t expect from a museum. In any case, I gave the gif thing a shot (subtle and not so subtle versions). My wife had The Lady of Shalott poster for a number of years so I’d seen it many times but in the gif reshaping I saw all sorts of interesting things in the painting that I’d never noticed. I’d missed the swallows1, the chain in her hand, and the crucifix in the prow. That led to some light research and, as always, some new knowledge. 1 I didn’t know what they were but guessed mockingbirds originally.