Posts Tagged ‘videos’

Breaking down San Francisco landmarks in the Watch Dogs 2 trailer

June 10th, 2016

This week Ubisoft launched a trailer for their upcoming game, Watch Dogs 2. While I wasn’t particularly impressed by the first entry in the series, a 3rd person action/hacking game, the sequel immediately interested me due to the setting: San Francisco and the Bay Area at large.

You can watch the trailer below or here. For those unfamiliar with the world of video games, this is a “cinematic” trailer, which means it’s CGI concept art intended to advertise the game — in other words, this isn’t gameplay footage, but rather what producers intend the game to look like when it’s finished.

How many local landmarks did you discover in the video? Here’s what I spotted — click any image for full size.

Golden Gate Bridge, Karl the Fog, and the Transamerica Pyramid:

The Ferry Building and the Embarcadero Center:

Alcatraz:

A cable car working its way up a hill:

Not technically a landmark, but a guy wearing Google Cardboard on Muni is good enough IMO:

Again, technically a homeless guy with a shopping card isn’t a “landmark” but it had might as well be:

Lombard Street, which someone’s taking a photo of on their phone for the sake of accuracy:

Sea Lions at Pier 39, complete with tourists utilizing a selfie stick:

3D printing a gun — okay so again this isn’t a landmark at all, but I imagine there’s more 3D printers than guns in San Francisco so I’ll let it slide:

Chinatown chase scene:

AT&T Park, or whichever phone company it’s named after right now:

“Nudle” is clearly a stand in for Google’s Mountain View campus:

The Bay Bridge serves as a backdrop for a chase scene:

Hangar One at Moffett Field in Mountain View:

Well there you have it. I’m sure there’s a few I missed, feel free to e-mail me an angry rant if that’s the case. Regardless I may have to buy the game when it comes out in November to see how it portrays the Bay Area.

Carnaval San Francisco 2016 parade

May 30th, 2016

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Click any photo for a larger view
 

This year’s Carnaval parade had all the elements we’ve come to expect: dance groups wearing peacock-style outfits, DJs on trucks spinning music, salsa dancers, stilt walkers, marching bands, and floats from various local organizations and city services. I thought Recology’s dancing garbage collectors were surprisingly on point, running around with recycling and compost bins in the sweltering sunlight.

Here’s some of the more unusual highlights. First, a visit from the masked man himself… Zorro!

 
Carnaval SF 2016
 

A photographer really wanted a photo of this dog, but the dog just wasn’t interested in fame.

 
Carnaval SF 2016
 

Elvis showed up with his pink Cadillac. When the parade stopped for a couple of minutes, he ran backwards through the parade to bust some moves with a burlesque troupe.

 
Carnaval SF 2016

Carnaval SF 2016
 

To complete this post here’s Batala’s drum troupe at the tail end of the parade:

52nd annual Cable Car Bell Ringing Contest

July 10th, 2015

Earlier today was Muni’s annual(-ish) Cable Car Bell Ringing Contest. What is a Cable Car Bell Ringing Contest, you ask? It’s a two-part contest where “amateurs” (non-Muni employees) compete, and a second part where cable car operators compete.

The rules for each part are very different. The amateur competition allows music, dancers, and apparently bribing the crowd with free Giants merchandise. This part takes place on a standalone bell outside the cable car.

The cable car operator competition takes place inside a cable car that was somehow transported to Union Square. This is the main part of the event, and only bell ringing is allowed. I’ve posted videos of the top two bell ringing champions below.

 

Coming in at second place, here’s previous champion Trini Whittaker:


 

Here’s first place winner Byron Cobb:

 
Finally, here’s a few photos from the event:

Cable Car Bell Ringing Contest 2015 Cable Car Bell Ringing Contest 2015 Cable Car Bell Ringing Contest 2015 Cable Car Bell Ringing Contest 2015

A look behind Obama’s Mars teleportation scandal

August 16th, 2012

Thanks to whistleblower Andrew D. Basiago, many news outlets picked up the story of Barack Obama’s early 1980’s jump gate to Mars teleportation scandal in late 2011.

The story of Jumpgategate apparently comes from Basiago’s frequent calls to the Coast to Coast AM radio show, which is of course where someone who wants to be taken seriously would call. He has sent Coast to Coast AM his time travel photo. For some reason there’s only one photo. Oh well.

Thanks to the internets, you don’t need an AM radio for one particularly amazing story — Basiago explains his childhood experience with “jump gates” on YouTube:

A few months later, the White House denied these claims to Wired’s Danger Room reporter Spencer Ackerman.

What could Obama possibly be hiding! And um, why are you only telling us about this now, Mr. Basiago? Why didn’t you mention any of this when you wrote about life on Mars in 2008? Kind of a glaring admission, in retrospect.

But Andrew Basiago has had some previous after-the-fact predictions that were remarkably equally belated; take, for example, this report of the Sept 11th attacks on the United States in 2001 that he predicted nearly a decade after they occurred. (Update: Link changed to Archive.org’s backup copy because the original link no longer loads the article.)

But it doesn’t end there, oh no. The same fellow has a range of stories that involve him and/or his father participating in unusual DARPA programs.

Here’s Basiago explaining his childhood teleportation experiences. (Update: this video has been made private.)

Andrew Basiago on visiting alternate timelines:

And here’s a video of Basiago lecturing for an hour about time travel, teleportation, unlimited energy, 3D holograms, etc. etc. (Update: this video has also been made private.)

Remembering the Red Vic Movie House

July 30th, 2011


 

In spite of their uncomfortable seats and strange popcorn toppings, many of us have fond memories of Haight Street’s Red Vic Movie House, which closed forever on Monday after more than 30 years.

Their silent “Dishes” video (above) was of course shown prior to every film. It served as a reminder to not make a mess and to return your popcorn bowl after the film. Otherwise, of course, you might find yourself pulled under the seat in front of you down into the depths of hell. An important lesson for us all.

But what really made the Red Vic memorable wasn’t just their funny film bumper or their selection of cult classic films — it was the guests who showed up. For example, when I first saw mumblecore classic “Funny Ha Ha,” director Andrew Bujalski stuck around to answer questions and just hang out with us in the audience. That sort of interaction between filmmaker and audience was the rule, not the exception at the Red Vic. You rarely find that at any other theater.

And that’s why the Red Vic will be missed.

The Two Commandments

May 23rd, 2011

With all this “rapture” nonsense over the weekend, I thought it was a good time to re-visit a classic George Carlin bit in which he narrows the 10 commandments down to a much more reasonable number, simply by cutting out the crap.

Bowling car

May 13th, 2011


 

On my way to Four Barrel, I came across this rather, um, unusual bowling-themed art car. It was a little Fiat with bowling pins that went in and out of the side of the car.

I wasn’t able to find the owner, but of course he showed up and immediately drove away while I was getting coffee. D’oh!

Anyway, I imagine he wouldn’t be to happy if I’d thrown a bowling ball at his lovely car, but it was rather tempting.

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Hippies love Real California Cheese

April 27th, 2011

Who doesn’t love cheese? (Aside from vegans, and we all know they don’t count.) Even hippies from San Francisco love cheese, as seen in this 1997 TV spot for Real California Cheese.

Guess I Got My Badger Back

April 2nd, 2011

Remember Badgers? Well now the creator of the video has a dubstep version.

Here it is:

How to take the census

March 30th, 2011

Next time I have to take the census, I’m going to use Christopher Walken’s method.