Sunday, January 15, 2012

Things that could have happened 50 years ago, technically...

Via Facebook today I saw two examples of some really cool things being done with technology that existed for at least fifty years:

Five people on an accoustic guitar:

"Inflatable street art":

Acoustic guitars have been around for centuries and video cameras for decades, but for some reason with all the years of entertainment on television, nobody has done anything like five people on a guitar, as far as I know.

And as far as the street art, well plastic bags have been around for at least fifty years and subway vents for a hundred years, but nobody ever thought to put them together like this until now.

What was needed to make these things into public phenomena - and thus worth doing - were smart phones and Youtube.

Thanks to smart phones, millions of people are walking around with simple-to-use video equipment on them at all times, and so this kind of art will be recorded. Combine that with Youtube, where the videos can immediately be shared with the world. Probably it has occurred to others that you could have five people on a guitar, but it wasn't important enough to carve out ten minutes of television time to show such a thing. But the bar to performance of one-off neat stuff like this is much lower now.

Please note that even though New York Magazine created this video profile of the street art, we are watching the piece via Youtube.

The New  Yorker has an interesting profile of Youtube this week - check it out, the entire article is available free: Streaming Dreams.