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Andrew Crago

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  • The Met Museum in NYC has redesigned their map to be “digital-first.” Their post about the launch outlines some of the unique challenges in designing for interactions that happen in a real space but still need to be understood internationally.
  • Harry Bertoia made sculptures that are instruments, or perhaps instruments that are sculptures. I like how many look like cattails.

Bosch

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Calling itself an “interactive documentary,” this online exploration of Hieronymus Bosch’s painting The Garden of Earthly Delights really does deliver. It strikes a nice balance by offering both a guided tour and the ability to explore freely. I’m a sucker for the no frills UI and Attenborough-esque narration.

Reg Kehoe and his Marimba Queens

A Study in Brown by Reg Kehoe and his Marimba Queens was a panoram “soundie”—one of the first ever music videos—created in 1940. It was shown as a bonus in movie houses between news reels and feature films. Like modern music videos, the sound was recorded separately, giving the musicians more freedom to perform. No one took advantage of this quite like the bass player, Frank DeNunzio.

Making the 1980s HBO Intro

It’s something that would be done digitally today, but the original HBO intro was shot with a model city. The production techniques are fascinating, and I can’t even believe the big brass letters.

The Beatles live in hi-fi

The Beatles youtube account has recently become active (in anticipation of a DVD release), and I am digging the remastered footage. While the coda in this video or Ringo’s face anytime could be the highlight, I love when John mocks Paul’s dance moves around 2:30.

Links

SpaceX Travel Posters

SpaceX made a neat series of retro-future travel posters for Mars tourism. I love them all, but the Olympus Mons one below is my favorite. Consider Mars for your next vacation!

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A better underline

I noticed the New Yorker changed the way that they do underlined text links. Now, glyph descenders break the underline in a way that reflects the New Yorker’s refined typographic style.

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How does this work? The best explanation may come from Medium, where Marcin Wichary worked it out for their own text-heavy site.

Essentially the descenders are cleared by putting a small, white (or whatever background color) shadow on either side of the glyphs. Here is a stand-alone version of the CSS in Codepen.

If there is any issue with this, it’s that in Firefox when the text is highlighted the multiple shadows do get picked-up.

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That minor glitch aside, the overall results do look good. It’s an almost imperceptible way for sites with a focus on content to differentiate their reading experience, and I’m glad to see web typography pushed forward.

Evolving ASL

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“As language evolves, the powers that regulate language tend to shift. Just look at the Oxford English Dictionary, who added terms like “duck face,” “lolcat,” and “hawt” to their prestigious lexicon this past December. For the English-speaking world, these additions are anywhere from ridiculous to annoying but at the end of the day, the terms are accepted and agreed upon.

But how do these new, internet-laden turns of phrase enter the sign language community? Was there a way of expressing “selfie” in ASL, was there a sign for “photobomb?” Our simplistic question turned into a larger conversation about the nature of communication.”

See the competing signs at Hopes & Fears.

Andromeda

Sharpest ever view of the Andromeda Galaxy

In January, NASA released the biggest Hubble Telescope image ever assembled: the image of Andromeda, above. It’s fitting, as Edwin Hubble himself first calculated Andromeda’s distance and established it as a separate galaxy about 100 years ago.

The full-scale version of the image has 1.5 billion pixels and shows over 100 million stars. That’s roughly one star for every ten pixels. The only way to appreciate this mind-boggling fact is to zoom in to the full, zoomable version. Even then, I think it might be impossible to comprehend.

Ray Villard of the Space Telescope Science Institute said, “It’s like photographing a beach and resolving individual grains of sand.”