CLOSE
Original image

A Zune ad worth seeing (...and one that isn't)

Original image

While I'm a true and tried Apple user, I've been eyeing the Microsoft Zune with curiosity—not so much because I want one, but because I'm dying to know how the supposed "iPod killer" plans on positioning itself. In any case, I've stumbled onto two ads recently, one of which I find thoroughly endearing, and the other completely disturbing. Here's the one that's too cute not to post.
It's done in a total Tim Burton style, and uses delicious music from M. Ward. I'm not sure whether people who are unfamiliar with the product know about the sharing tunes function (you can supposedly beam your favorite songs over to friends' Zune for them to listen to), but the concept's nicely illustrated if you know about it aforehand.

Of course, the ad that I find a lot less likable is this one. It also plays off the sharing function, though it involves a cartoon lion constantly mauling his friend. I'm guessing if the Zune goes in this direction, they'll have a far more limited audience. Links via Adfreak.
Picture 1.png

Original image
Ian Hitchcock/Getty Images
arrow
Space
Can’t See the Eclipse in Person? Watch NASA’s 360° Live Stream
Original image
Ian Hitchcock/Getty Images

Depending on where you live, the historic eclipse on August 21 might not look all that impressive from your vantage point. You may be far away from the path of totality, or stuck with heartbreakingly cloudy weather. Maybe you forgot to get your eclipse glasses before they sold out, or can't get away from your desk in the middle of the day.

But fear not. NASA has you covered. The space agency is live streaming a spectacular 4K-resolution 360° live video of the celestial phenomenon on Facebook. The livestream started at 12 p.m. Eastern Time and includes commentary from NASA experts based in South Carolina. It will run until about 4:15 ET.

You can watch it below, on NASA's Facebook page, or on the Facebook video app.

arrow
Art
Cephalopod Fossil Sketch in Australia Can Be Seen From Space

Australia is home to some of the most singular creatures alive today, but a new piece of outdoor art pays homage to an organism that last inhabited the continent 65 million years ago. As the Townsville Bulletin reports, an etching of a prehistoric ammonite has appeared in a barren field in Queensland.

Ammonites are the ancestors of the cephalopods that currently populate the world’s oceans. They had sharp beaks, dexterous tentacles, and spiraling shells that could grow more than 3 feet in diameter. The inland sea where the ammonites once thrived has since dried up, leaving only fossils as evidence of their existence. The newly plowed dirt mural acts as a larger-than-life reminder of the ancient animals.

To make a drawing big enough to be seen from space, mathematician David Kennedy plotted the image into a path consisting of more than 600 “way points.” Then, using a former War World II airfield as his canvas, the property’s owner Rob Ievers plowed the massive 1230-foot-by-820-foot artwork into the ground with his tractor.

The project was funded by Soil Science Australia, an organization that uses soil art to raise awareness of the importance of farming. The sketch doubles as a paleotourist attraction for the local area, which is home to Australia's "dinosaur trail" of museums and other fossil-related attractions. But to see the craftsmanship in all its glory, visitors will need to find a way to view it from above.

[h/t Townsville Bulletin]

SECTIONS

arrow
LIVE SMARTER
More from mental floss studios