Underwater Homes: The Preservation of Sea Life

Rapid changes in climate and natural phenomenas have many worried about global warming. Much thought and consideration is given to landmasses and the atmosphere, but what about our friends in the deep blue? For centuries, the coral reefs have offered protection for many sea creatures, but with global warming in full effect, much of the reef has been decimated.

Jason deCaires Taylor has taken a proactive stance on this matter by designing underwater homes for sea life. These intricate cement homes offer everything that coral reefs once offered sea creatures: protection and a secure habitat. Taylor put a lot of effort into the structure’s design, making the homes habitable for many species. The cement material is “coral friendly” meaning that coral will eventually cover the surface, somewhat restoring what has been lost.

Taylor is an innovative whose ingenious tactics and executions is jaw dropping. What do you think about this interesting approach to the preservation of sea life? See more of the project on Dornob.com.

BCulture_CourtB

Urban Air

There are only four states in the US that do not allow billboards: Alaska, Hawaii, Maine, and Vermont. What do these states have in common? Natural beauty. As a member of the advertising/marketing community, I wouldn’t deny considering a billboard as an option for OOH, but sometimes I would like to look at trees or mountains and the like instead of “Girls! Girls! Girls!”

Stephen Glassman of Los Angeles came up with an interesting idea that has the support of Summit Media, who volunteered to donate prominent billboards in LA for the first prototype. The idea: create “floating, globally connected urban forests growing where billboards stand.”

Each billboard/eco-system will also be included with a self-sustaining water and lighting system, so once the initial setup is finished, little maintenance is required. Stephen also has experience in participating in large-scale projects in the public realm.

So, if you think this is a good idea and/or live in a major metropolitan area, like Atlanta, LA, Chicago, New York, or Miami, and wouldn’t mind taking a small moment out of your commute home to take a deep breath of “fresh” air, donate $5.00 because I’m curious to see how this plays out.

Find the link to Stephen’s Kickstarter page here. His goal is $100,000 by December 11. As of November 12, they are at $19,288.

@BCulture_Matt

Would You “Like-A-Hug”?

What’s better than logging into Facebook, to discover that there’s a new message in your inbox, or a dozen friend requests waiting for your approval? Social media has become an integral part of our lives, something that we literally thrive on.  But what would you think if the social media craze turned physical?

A project by designer Melissa Kit Chow, does just this. The “Like-A-Hug” jacket combines Facebook, design and fashion, creating a groundbreaking piece. Let’s say someone likes your recent post about cute cat hats; for every comment or like the jacket inflates, giving the person wearing it a “hug”. Did you just receive a “hug?” With a simple hugging gesture – send the hug back to the person who sent it to you.

Ideas like this take social media communication to the next level. Rather than just reading comments from your loved ones, get hugs that really show their feelings and affection for you. The future of social media and technology is still a mystery but thanks to Chow’s “Like-A-Hug” we know warm hugs and fuzzy things are in store.

@BCulture_CourtB

Don’t Get Scammed on Facebook

You’ve probably seen them appear in your news feed. Offers so good, they can’t possibly be real. Or, maybe the old “they’re going to start charging to use Facebook…” Or maybe the shocking celebrity sex tape. OMG! As Facebook now has over 1 billion users, the temptation for criminals, scammers, and hackers will only continue to rise.

On the other hand, companies sometimes do offer great deals or contest entries to win an iPad, so how can you be sure of which is which. A suggestion from The Bulldog Estate, where “we take pride in exposing scams,” double check the retailer’s main website or Facebook page before clicking the offer. If it isn’t there, or there’s no mention of it all: Beware.

Usually, fake celebrity gossip videos turn out to be survey scams, where the user must complete a survey, then can view the alleged shocking tape, only to realize the video doesn’t play. Words like “Shocking” or “OMG” usually are good indicators.

Facebook will be charging for their services if you don’t click here or sign a petition. The gist of this scam has been floating around for years, but people still bite to this day. Instead of threats, like being charged for Facebook, scammers also try sweeter approaches. In September, the website Facecrook, who exposes Facebook scams, reported on a post that offered to change the colors of your Facebook layout. “WOW!!! Hello PINK Facebook!!! Goodbye BLUE Facebook! You can now change your Facebook color to 8 different colors using color changer v1.3 here.”

Odds are if you are skeptical about a news story, offer, or newly updated Facebook feature, it’s best not to click.

@BCulture_Matt

A iPad App That Stops Time #TourneauMinutes

Okay, so it doesn’t really stop time, but you can get lost in this app!

Tourneau, the U.S.’ largest luxury watch retailer, has joined the ranks of some other luxury marketers by creating an exclusive iPad experience for their target market of users. The Tourneau Minutes publication is delivered to customers’ mail boxes in magazine form, but now, is delivered via an app as well.

Senior Vice President of Marketing and Online, Donald McNichol, said, “The strategy behind the app was the editorial content integration into the watch world. It started with the magalog, and then through the iPad app, we could further integrate that storytelling and experience.”

Magalog is code for a magazine-catalog hybrid. App users can explore editorial content, read articles, interact with the watches, and learn more about specific timepieces. Mr. McNichol stated, “Now it is not limited to the one dimension of the print page and brings in more interactivity of the community. It is building a lifestyle community around certain topics”. The most significant words of this statement are interactivity, community and connectivity.

He said, “In the app world, you get great connectivity within the community.” The goal is to develop a niche community where users feel as though they can connect with others, in a way that is stimulating.

With interviews from watch collector William Rohr, several getaways including to Paris and the North and South Poles, and the timing of baseball, users are intertwined in the mix of browsing watches, learning more about them, and reading interesting articles.

Users also can link the App to their social media profiles (Facebook, Twitter, and Tumblr) and post updates directly from the App. The App features 12 different time zones from LA to Hanoi to London.

Download the App from the iTunes store here. What do you think of it? Is there something missing? What is your favorite feature? Have fun with it, and enjoy!

@BCulture_Matt

*Disclaimer: The Tourneau Minutes iPad App was developed by B Culture Media.

Police Scanners & Twitter: Makes Sense, Right?

After reading an article about a Venice-based (California) Twitter account that live-tweets crime, accidents, fires, etc., I will admit, my curiosity was piqued.  It turns out there are plenty of accounts playing similar roles. The account mentioned is @Venice311. Over 23,000 tweets, with over 8,000 followers. Here’s a good tweet from yesterday:

In the age of accountability, these live-tweeters are doing some good for the community (list at end of article). They are making the community more aware of the crime in their neighborhood. They are making sure the forces in charge do their job and don’t overdo it – police brutality, etc. And who knows? Maybe some crimes can be prevented or solved this way. Maybe a missing person is a little bit more likely to be found.

The city of Seattle even attempted an experiment in which their Police Department tweeted every one of their 911 calls in one day, in 140 characters, of course. They sent an average of 40 tweets per hour, totaling 478 by day’s end. An interesting social media experiment, especially considering the Department did not inform their followers of what they were doing. Some were worried. And some wanted them to shut up. The gem was a “suspicious person possibly armed with a sword.”

If you feel like getting in on the action, you can download several police scanner apps. I splurged and purchased the $0.99 5-0 Radio Police Scanner. The Lite version is available for free. Pretty fun to listen in – so far, I’ve heard a few accidents, a bomb threat, a loose dog, expired tags, a parking ticket, a burglary, and a fire in metro Atlanta.

  • @Venice311 (Venice/LA)
  • @NYRadio (NYC)
  • @LAPDscanner (LA)
  • @ScannerFeeds (collective)
  • @DFWScanner (Dallas/Ft. Worth)
  • @SeattlePD (Seattle)

BONUS:

@sheboyganscan – As in Sheboygan, Wisconsin, here are some gems from their feed. Follow them for humorous crimes.


@BCulture_Matt