Mark Bult Design: San Francisco, CA, Established 1988

Web design and development for small and large business, e-commerce, b2b, b2c, SAAS, and community websites. User experience design and usability testing.


Thursday, April 22, 2010

Thursday Top 5+1



“Pixels”
The end is nigh! Awesome short film by Patrick Jean



Catch Me if You Can opening title sequence
Great graphics here. I need to Netflix this movie.



Apartment advice from Conan O’Brien
NBC is so stupid. Conan rules.

“And Then There Was Salsa” Tostitos ad
You want to see some innovative online advertising? This Tostitos ad is brilliant. I had to watch it three times just to catch all the spectacular awesomeness. This one for Wario Land: Shake It! is pretty rad too.

I Love Wikipedia
A collection of interestingness gleaned from Wikipedia.

NYTimes: “Video Shows U.S. Killing of Reuters Employees”
And Americans wonder why people of other countries hate us: “...A wounded man can be seen crawling and the pilots impatiently hope that he will try to fire at them so that under the rules of engagement they can shoot him again. ‘All you gotta do is pick up a weapon,’ one pilot says...”

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Thursday, January 21, 2010

Thursday Top 5



Christmas Decoration Win
From Failblog: “Good news is that I truly outdid myself this year with my Christmas decorations. The bad news is that I had to take him down after two days. I had more people come screaming up to my house than ever. Great stories. But two things made me take it down. First, the cops advised me that it would cause traffic accidents as they almost wrecked when they drove by. Second, a 55-year-old lady grabbed the 75 pound ladder almost killed herself putting it against my house and didn’t realize that it was fake until she climbed to the top (she was not happy). By the way, she was one of the many people who attempted to do that. My yard couldn’t take it either. I have more than a few tire tracks where people literally drove up my yard.”



White House iPhone app
With the announcement of the first-ever official White House App, the Obama administration to pursue technology and communications as a means for public engagement, in stark contrast to the previous administration. Among other things, the app reportedly delivers live video streaming for the president’s public events. Browsing the App Store, there are several other White House and Obama related apps, although some of them appear outdated (originating pre-election), or just plain lame. One other that caught my eye, however, was the White House Photostream app (will open iTunes), which is probably pretty cool. I’ve mentioned before that the White House’s photos are available on Flickr.



Dear American Airlines
Fascinating story in which a solo designer decided to redesign American Airlines’ crappy home page and publicly call out their design team. Then a member of the AA user experience design team responded. Shortly thereafter, that employee was fired.



Sea Shepherd vs. the Japanese research whaling fleet
It’s terribly interesting to read the press releases of the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society regarding the January 5 ramming of one of their vessels by a Japanese whaling ship, and the ensuing battles in the Antarctic Ocean. There’s no dispute that the Japanese ship rammed the $2 million speedboat that looks like it comes right out of a Batman movie — the smaller craft wasn’t even running its engines and there’s video evidence from at least two angles showing the impact.



The Third & The Seventh
Watch this short film ( would definitely suggest watching it in full screen at least, if not HD), then afterward, hover over this link to learn a secret about it.


The weekly Thursday Top 5 lists the five most notable, interesting, funny, outrageous, cool, or simply strange things of the week. It is intended for distractionary purposes only. Do not take orally. If ingested, seek a doctor’s advice. If you like it, share it with others, or check out the long list of previous entries.

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Thursday, December 31, 2009

Thursday Top 5



7,000 death metal logos? That’s like 1,850,000 spikes!
Vice brings us a brief interview with Christophe Szpajdel, a designer who specializes in creating logos for death metal bands. He says he’s designed more than 7,000 of them in the last 20 years. I don’t know what’s more scary: that he made that many, or that there have been that many death metal bands.



Peter Callesen
Amazing paper sculpture. [via Jenny]



HP computers are racist
The face tracking feature of the HP web cam will not recognize or track black faces. Or, as Dezi (sp?) puts it in the video, “The HP webcam does not pick up negroes.”



MPG Stickers
Get good mileage? Get a custom MPG sticker for your vehicle. Our 1996 Honda Civic DX still gets better mileage than practically any other “modern” car you can buy today in America, including the so-called “fuel-efficient” ones. We love our Hondog.

A Troubling Story of SFPD Bias Against Bicycle Riders
“...As I tried to get information from three SFPD police officers on the scene of the crash, two of them showered me with unadulterated disdain for bicyclists and pedestrians. One officer said she thought bicyclists and pedestrians are always at fault in crashes and that they are stupid for not watching out for drivers. She was very upset with cyclists running red lights. She told me the bicyclist was at fault in this crash without any knowledge that a witness was saying the opposite...”


The weekly Thursday Top 5 lists the five most notable, interesting, funny, outrageous, cool, or simply strange things of the week. It is intended for distractionary purposes only. Do not take orally. If ingested, seek a doctor’s advice. If you like it, share it with others, or check out the long list of previous entries.

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Friday, December 25, 2009

Xmas cheer

Why Atheists Care About Your Religion

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Thursday, December 24, 2009

Thursday Top 5



Designer–Client relationships
From the awesome website Clients From Hell. Sadly, I’ve actually heard some of these things myself. This one, for example, is very similar to a situation I was experiencing quite recently.



Good: Jailbirds
A little data on the prison-industrial complex (link is a fascinating Atlantic article from 1998 by Eric Schlosser).



Sucker Love: Celebrating the naughty tentacle
Amanda Gannon answers the question, “Would you still do Antonio Banderas if he was an octopus from the waist down?” Needless to say, NSFW.



The Known Universe
This is really cool. Travel from Earth to the end of the known universe, in a scale-accurate animation.



Black Metal Cookies
How to bake the most grim and doom-laden of chocolate chip cookies. [via Jason]


The weekly Thursday Top 5 lists the five most notable, interesting, funny, outrageous, cool, or simply strange things of the week. It is intended for distractionary purposes only. Do not take orally. If ingested, seek a doctor’s advice. If you like it, share it with others, or check out the long list of previous entries.

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Thursday, December 17, 2009

Thursday Top 5

I’ve been too swamped to post the Thursday Top 5 on time for two weeks. Fortunately, no matter how busy I am, people still keep sending me funny and interesting stuff. A few of these below are recent finds, and a few are from the Top 5 archives. So here’s two weeks’ worth in one post, and I’ll try to be on time next week. Enjoy!



Please design a logo for me. With pie charts. For free.
As a follow-up to last week’s “How a Web Design Goes Straight To Hell,” James sent me this classic piece of humor.



How Twilight Works
In case you want to know what the whole Twilight hoopla is all about, The Oatmeal has explained it for us.



The FlatPak house
A cool prefab system. About / Photos.



Coca-Cola's Quest for the Perfect Bottle Starts with Plants
Coca-Cola has introduced the PlantBottle, a bottle made of PET plastic, 30% of which is sourced from Brazilian sugar cane and molasses. The company’s marketers will no doubt spin this as near to 100% “green” as they can safely get away with, and the vast majority of consumers will no doubt fail to note the difference between a bottle’s claim of “PlantBottle! 100% recyclable!” and the preferable goals of 100% renewable and 100% compostable. After all, the bottle is still 100% plastic, it's just that it’s partly plant-based plastic, instead of 100% petroleum byproduct. But, as GreenBiz columnist Marc Gunther notes, it’s a start. And a pretty good one.



The Muppets: Bohemian Rhapsody

Carl Kassell is retiring as the voice of “Morning Edition”
Thankfully, he’ll continue as judge and scorekeeper on “Wait Wait...Don’t Tell Me!”. Carl is awesome. Enough said.



Rachel Maddow explains Washington D.C. gangs
Wait it out until until about 1:20. You will not be disappointed. PS: I loathe the poseur Joe Lieberman and hope he dies a horrible, burning death.



Beware the Death-Dealing Cockney Weasel
From the bizarre mind of illustrator Ryan Abegglen.



The Tetris God
I knew it. Bastard.



Breakdancing robot


The weekly Thursday Top 5 lists the five most notable, interesting, funny, outrageous, cool, or simply strange things of the week. It is intended for distractionary purposes only. Do not take orally. If ingested, seek a doctor’s advice. If you like it, share it with others, or check out the long list of previous entries.

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Thursday, July 02, 2009

Thursday Top 5



New Gay Pride flag designs
Public radio program Studio 360 asked listeners to submit a new design for the Gay Pride flag. They also asked the progressive design and marketing firm Worldstudio to come up with some new designs. I like Worldstudio’s circle flag as a pure design, but the concept behind listener Carl Tashian’s flag is compelling: Each state’s star would be added to the flag when it passes a law allowing same-sex marriage. Finally, one day, it would become the U.S. flag.



Deadline
Post It stop motion. Very cool.



“Dance Anthem of the 80s”
If you don’t know Regina Spektor by now, you oughta.



The 3/50 Project



Baron Vaughn
I was watching this bit by comedian Baron Vaughn and he mentioned going to the KKK’s website, so naturally I had to go check it out. It features such gems as WhitePride.tv, T-shirts, ceramic KKK statues, jewelry, bible prophesy books, creationism science [sic] books, and other “novelty items,” under headlines like “America, Our Nation is Under Judgement from God!” Seriously. While I’m not particularly happy giving them Google juice by linking to them, I think all Americans should be informed about the sort of ingrates we continue to breed in this country.

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Wednesday, June 03, 2009

Thursday Top 5+2



Last night of “The Tonight Show with Jay Leno”
I haven’t watched Leno for years, and he was never my favorite, as I preferred the wacky ’80s and early ’90s era of Letterman, but Leno’s not bad at all. Last week was his final night on “The Tonight Show” before Conan takes over the reins in L.A., so I decided to watch it for history’s sake. They did about ten minutes of “Jaywalking,” the man-on-the street comedy segment where he just asks simple questions of normal, everyday Americans on the streets of L.A. (assuming there is such a thing in L.A., I suppose), such as “Who was the first president of the United States?”. This segment has always struck me as funny and excrutiatingly painful at the same time, as it shows just how terribly stupid Americans are. Worse yet, on this last show Jay tells us that they don’t even have to work hard to compile the funniest/dumbest moments after each outing. They only go out for about an hour, he says, they talk to a dozen or so people, and they use nine or so. That means over half the citizens of the republic are so retarded they can’t tell you which countries border on the U.S. or name any of the Founding Fathers. Oh, cry for our future! [43:29, 5 commercials]



First night of “The Tonight Show with Conan O’Brien”
Meanwhile, across town at the Universal Studios lot, the finishing touches have been put on a new studio for Conan, who took over the reins from Leno the very next week. Andy Richter returns as the show announcer, Max Weinberg and the band now get to call themselves The Tonight Show Band, and Conan was in fine form for his first time hosting the legendary show that’s been around since 1954. Musical Guest was Pearl Jam. [43:31, 5 commmercials]



Schwarzenegger answers real people’s questions
The member communities of CNN.com’s iReport and Digg Dialogg teamed up to interview CA Governator Arnold Schwarzenegger on May 27. In an unusual example of democracy, the Republican actor-turned-guv answers questions posed by and voted on by the Digg and iReport users. Showing a little more moxie than even the traditional press can sometimes muster, there were a few hard-charging queries, leading off with “Do you support same-sex marriage and do you think the GOP should become more gay-friendly?” Of course, there were some softies too, like “Does the term ‘Governator’ bother you?” All questions and video here [30:31 min].



BART swingers
Apparently a few weeks ago somebody surreptitiously installed swings on a BART train. And thus the fun did ensue. More pics...



New Yorker cover created on an iPhone
Artist Jorge Colombo painted the cover illustration using the Brushes app on his iPhone.



Beatles come to Rock Band
Apparently Microsoft has been able to make inroads where Apple hasn’t, since the two remaining Beatles and the widows of the other two members joined various tech and gaming notables to announce that the Beatles are coming to Rock Band this fall. The animation sequence at the beginning is cool enough to merit watching in HD, but the rest of the long presentation isn’t probably interesting to you unless you’re into gaming. I watched the whole thing, though, and as a non-gamer I’m always impressed at the continually-improving, nearly-cinematic quality of the visuals in today’s games. In fact, if you’re really into seeing where the entertainment and social media technology is going in the next few years, there are some pretty amazing things unveiled in the last 25 minutes or so; look for Steven Spielberg’s appearance to tip you off.



“We Didn’t Start the Flame War”
Warning: nsfw. Gotta hand it to the CollegeHumor folks, they nail the ridiculousness of the internets (including self-satire) in this one. [2:44 min]

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Thursday, May 21, 2009

Thursday Top 5+3

Velma and I are going on a site visit to beautiful Sequioa National Park for a few days and I thought I’d be generous and post some extra distractions for those of you stuck behind desks while we’re backpacking through the redwoods. So here are three bonus links along with your normal five. Don’t say I never gave you nuthin’.



“Barney Miller” on Hulu
I loved this classic sitcom from the ’70s and ’80s, so I was pleased to see Hulu has added every episode. I’ve watched several so far, reliving my childhood with pre-adolescent glee. Plus the show had one of the all-time raddest theme songs (I can say “rad,” it was the ’80s!), and I found a free MP3 at TelevisionTunes.com. Now I just need to find all the episodes of “Taxi” somewhere online.



TelevisionTunes.com
Of course, I then spent half an hour looking up TV theme songs on this site. Best finds were the aforementioned Barney Miller, a semi-good quality version of the “Hitchhiker’s Guide” TV theme, and the awesome “Streets of San Francisco” intro, which I’ve been wanting for years.



The Unofficial Apple Weblog’s Mac 101 series
I’ve been a Mac user for almost 25 years now (*whew*) so it’s not surprising that I’ve picked up a lot of power-user tips over the years. But even I learn something new once in a while. For PC-to-Mac switchers, novices, and even old timers, the Mac 101 series on TUAW is a great way to pick up quick and easy tips that will make you more productive and save time and effort. I perused the entire series a few nights ago and there are some great shortcuts and tips that will undoubtedly leave most Mac users thinking, “Aha! That’s how you do that!”



The Evolution of Apple.com
Snapshots of Apple’s home page, from 1997 to today.



Brute force Hubble fix saves the day — again
Play-by-play description of the second time spacewalking astronauts had to resort to brute force to repair part of Hubble on this latest, and so far very successful, trip. Some other interesting play-by-play descriptions of the recent trip are available in other posts on CNET News’s Space Shot blog.



What Would Penis Do?
The artist of these shorts has a new book.



Aerial Virtual Tour of New York
Dizzyingly cool. Switch it to full-screen and be amazed.

“Space Oddity: Steve Lamacq Live’s guide to the Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy”
I recently found this broadcast from BBC Radio 1 about the history of the Hitchhiker’s phenomenon, produced to introduce the 2005 movie. Features interview snippets with Douglas Adams, Simon Jones, Stephen Fry, actors from the original BBC TV series and radio shows, fans, and a bunch of people involved with the movie. Oh, and it’s hosted by the original Marvin, in character of course. It’s actually quite a good show, regardless of the movie being rather a let-down. [31:24 min, RealPlayer stream]

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