Andrew Hearst

Andrew Hearst is a contributing editor at Vanity Fair and the proprietor of the blog Panopticist. His writing has appeared in The New York Times, The Village Voice, The New York Sun, Print, Metropolis, Lingua Franca, Book, and many other publications.

2001's monolith in VHS format–literally

Article: 2001's monolith in VHS format–literally

Cue Richard Strauss’s “Also Sprach Zarathustra”: Using Styrofoam, Plexiglas, and latex paint, the artist David Herbert created this monolithic tribute to the monolith in Stanley Kubrick’s 2001. It appeared (or is appearing?) at the Saatchi Gallery in London. If I were rich and had a gigantic apartment, I would totally buy this. [via Looker.]

Amazing Tokyo time-lapse

Article: Amazing Tokyo time-lapse

In this gorgeous ad for the watch company Citizen, buildings implode and explode, lights dance in complex arrays, and shadows engulf entire parks. The ad was created by the Japanese agency WOW for a watch- and jewelry-industry trade show called Baselworld.

Font-clone wars

Article: Font-clone wars

This one’s for the typography nerds: In a follow-up to last year’s excellent short “Font Conference,” the loopy gang at College Humor gives us “Font Fight!,” a violence-filled showdown between two typeface gangs–one led by Helvetica, the other by Helvetica’s “shameless impostor,” Arial. The ending features a surprise cameo by perhaps the most evil font…

A peek inside nytimes.com's research and development lab

Article: A peek inside nytimes.com's research and development lab

A guy from Harvard’s Nieman Journalism Lab paid a visit recently to the R&D studio at The New York Times, where the paper’s “design integration editor,” Nick Bilton, gave a demonstration of all sorts of cool future-of-media technologies, including electronic ink, flexible screens, and highly customizable newspaper apps built on the Adobe Air platform. Nick…

DIRTY DANCING, David Lynch style

Article: DIRTY DANCING, David Lynch style

In the spirit of this month’s Sundance Channel spotlight, here’s one of the better movie mashups I’ve seen recently: a DIRTY DANCING trailer edited in the style of David Lynch. Pretty excellent:

The English language as a first-person shooter game

Article: The English language as a first-person shooter game

Check out this amazing ad for Inlingua, an international language-training company. It’s a spot for the company’s Business English service, and it presents the English language as a literal battlefield. This is some of the best motion typography I’ve ever seen:

Social TV: Watch online with your Facebook and MySpace pals

Article: Social TV: Watch online with your Facebook and MySpace pals

Mashable, the site devoted to coverage of the social-media industry, posted a cool report about SplashCast, a widget that adds revolutionary commenting capabilities to offerings from Hulu and other online video providers. It’s easy to add a comment to the discussion thread on, say, a YouTube page, but SplashCast, or “Social TV,” as they call it, is different.

Trailer: Meryl Streep as Julia Child

Article: Trailer: Meryl Streep as Julia Child

Via the excellent cooking site Simply Recipes, here’s the trailer for JULIE AND JULIA, Nora Ephron’s upcoming film based on Julie Powell’s book by the same name. Subtitled “My Year of Cooking Dangerously” and inspired by a blog she maintained during the project, the book was Powell’s memoir of reinventing her life by cooking every…

David Hockney's iPhone paintings

Article: David Hockney's iPhone paintings

The Daily Mail tells of how the celebrated artist David Hockney has been creating mini-paintings on his iPhone and emailing them to friends.  Pretty tech-savvy for a 71-year-old: [via TUAW]

Jazz history in iTunes U

Article: Jazz history in iTunes U

I’ve been using the iTunes Music Store pretty much since the day it launched, but I’ve never really spent any time poking around iTunes U, the section of the store devoted to podcasts, videotaped lectures, and other content from universities, museums, and similar institutions. Participants include the Museum of Modern Art, the Tate Modern, the…

President Obama, furniture mover

Article: President Obama, furniture mover

There are lots of great images in the just-posted Flickr set by White House photographer Pete Souza, but this is my favorite: In preparation for a meeting about the economic recovery plan, President Obama and Vermont governor Jim Douglas shift a couch in the Oval Office. The set is filled with lots of casual, revealing…

Bob Dylan, Blondie and Radiohead, Modernist-style

Article: Bob Dylan, Blondie and Radiohead, Modernist-style

In a similar vein to the vintage book cover mashups posted here last month, an Australian designer has created a series of Modernist reimaginings of classic album covers by Depeche Mode, Lou Reed, Pink Floyd, and others. They’re excellent. Here’s R.E.M.’s: [via Jason Kottke]

Product-placement pioneers: the hair-metal band Autograph

Article: Product-placement pioneers: the hair-metal band Autograph

Jon Fine of BusinessWeek has a great post about one of the earliest-known examples of product placement in a music video: the pen company Paper Mate’s sponsorship of Autograph’s 1984 video for “Turn Up the Radio”: Yes, this actually happened: In 1984 Paper Mate found an unknown poodle-rock band called Autograph, gave ‘em some bucks,…

Newt Gingrich and Joe Biden channel T-Pain

Article: Newt Gingrich and Joe Biden channel T-Pain

For this video, some excellent goofballs ran a bunch of news clips through Auto-Tune, T-Pain-style, and the results are hilarious: Part two is no less comedy gold: [via Boing Boing.]

Garry Trudeau on "journotwits"

Article: Garry Trudeau on "journotwits"

Mediabistro’s Webnewser blog has an exclusive interview with Doonesbury creator Garry Trudeau about the media world’s obsession with Twitter. Trudeau, who generally thinks the microblogging service is a useless time-suck, devoted a recent series of strips to the Twitter experiments of the hapless journalist Roland Hedley. Here’s what Trudeau has to say about real-life tweeting…

John Lithgow reads a previously unpublished essay by Mark Twain

Article: John Lithgow reads a previously unpublished essay by Mark Twain

In this video for Who Is Mark Twain?, a new HarperStudio collection of previously unpublished Twain essays, John Lithgow reads a short excerpt over lovely animations by Flash Rosenberg: Who is Mark Twain? from Flash Rosenberg on Vimeo.

What's the Matter With Kansas is now a film

Article: What's the Matter With Kansas is now a film

Thomas Frank’s What’s the Matter With Kansas was one of the smartest and most provocative books to appear during the George W. Bush presidency. Kansas, the author’s home state, tended to vote Democratic until a few decades ago, when Republican strategists started figuring out how to exploit social issues for electoral gain. According to Frank,…

A vintage ad campaign for the Dharma Initiative

Article: A vintage ad campaign for the Dharma Initiative

Flickr user Hot Meteor recently made a series of brilliant faux-vintage print ads for the Dharma Initiative, the shadowy, mysterious organization whose activities are central to the plot of Lost. Here’s one of the best: Click through for a larger version (with readable text). [via Jason Kottke.] By the way, if you’re a fan of…

You won't find these records in Guinness

Article: You won't find these records in Guinness

Calling itself “the definitive site for human achievement,” The Universal Record Database is a droll and very funny repository for video of record-setting feats like “Most Times Unzipping Pants in 30 Seconds” to “Most American Quarters Fit Inside a Belly Button” and “Most Nose Flares in One Minute.” The best intro to URDB’s deadpan shenanigans…

Addled Billy Bob Thornton doesn't know what you're talking about

Article: Addled Billy Bob Thornton doesn't know what you're talking about

Actor and part-time musician Billy Bob Thornton appeared on the Canadian radio show Studio Q last Wednesday morning to promote the latest album by his band, the Boxmasters. But he wasn’t in the mood to speak in complete sentences, let alone promote anything–and the result was this, the best celebrity meltdown video since Joaquin Phoenix…

Duncan Jones's indie MOON looks like excellent sci-fi

Article: Duncan Jones's indie MOON looks like excellent sci-fi

The movie site firstshowing.net has the excellent new trailer for MOON, an indie sci-fi film that debuted at the Sundance Film Festival and hits theaters, in limited release, on June 12. Starring Sam Rockwell as a solitary astronaut preparing to head home after a three-year stint on the moon, the film appears to be a…

Siftables: artificially intelligent toys

Article: Siftables: artificially intelligent toys

In this excellent short TED talk, an MIT grad student named David Merrill demonstrates the capabilities of Siftables, biscuit-size toy blocks that interact with each other using complex sensors. Siftables can be used to solve math problems, generate electronic music, create art, and tell stories: The technology used in Siftables is interesting on its own…

Salvaging the reputation of Howard the Duck (the comic book, not the film)

Article: Salvaging the reputation of Howard the Duck (the comic book, not the film)