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March 17, 2011


Banner+aid helps the online community to give their paid banner advertising a temporary makeover and help spread the word for charities to give to those in need.


It's a webpage process that enables flash banners to be labeled with a special corner that expands to reveal messages for charity. It's a way for worthy causes to piggyback on paid for media without cost. It's a way for business and media buying companies to show support for people in need.

The cause of the moment is Red Cross helping those in need through Japanese quake and Pacific Tsunami.

The additional layer does not affect the existing messaging, animation, click through or interaction within the original banner that was uploaded in most cases. The total extra file weight of the processed banner is around 6kb.

Formats supported are all standard IAB sizes (300x250 MREC, 160x600 Widesky, 120x600 Sky, 468x60 standard banner and 420x600 Monster).

Anybody advertising online can upload and process a banner to contain the added layer by visiting , and use the updated outputted banner to replace existing trafficked banner ads OR as a final step before trafficking a new banner.

Banner+Aid is a not for profit messaging tool which allocates it's messages to a current and visible cause, by offering a direct link through to a donation page or other relevant information areas from within existing online display banners.

Help spread the word guys.

October 11, 2009

Twadges: Twitter Achievements


With so many Twitter ranking sites out there I thought it would be nice if there was a service which awarded you points based on how you use Twitter rather than just how many followers you have. It was then that Twadges was born. This was my internal R&D project at Soap. Each team member has an R&D project and I was able to wrangle a developer, illustrator and a work experience kid to help me put this together.

Yes we know it sounds rude but we're not naming a national icon it's a bit of fun.

Twadges reviews your last 1000 tweets and awards you points and Twadges based on certain criteria. Mention coffee a few times and you'll get the coffee badge. Mention a film currently in the BO in America and you'll get a Twadge for that too. Joined Twitter in the first month? There's a Twadge for that. There are 60 Twadges all up.


We also tapped into Cursebird to get an accurate swear rating of users.


Twitter founder Evan is currently #1 and Marvel's Agent_M is #2 on the rankings. These guys don't even appear in the top of the other ranking sites such as Twitterank, Twitterholic and Twittercounter. I'm not even sure how to compare them on their Twitter Penis size.

We had plans to add many more but the CPU power of parsing through 1000 tweets and comparing for 50 or so keywords is quite intensive.


We also made the Twadges available as avatars., This includes many of the designs we couldn't code for like "tweeted on your birthday". As users don't enter their birth date we could not work this out.

Even though Twadges haven't taken the Twitternet by storm it was still fulfilling having an internal R&D project up and out there to share. As with most R&D projects the journey was more rewarding than the destination.

You should also follow me on Twitter here.

Also if you're into Twitter check out Dustin Curtis's article here.

And if you think Twitter follower counts are the best way to rank people read my Twitter Sheep Syndrome article here. I guess that's why they are called "followers".

June 14, 2009

35 Awesome Augmented Reality Examples

If it wasn't for Twitter and social media as a whole grabbing all the headlines Augmented Reality would be the most talked about "technology" of 2008/2009.

While the roots of the technology have been around since as early as the 1990's (remember VR games!) it's only in the last 12 months has the interactive industry taken to it like moths to a flame. Below you will find some of the worlds biggest brands dipping their toe into "Augmented Reality". Some are in it for the PR aspect others trying to find a useful application. Many just to satisfy their need to do something new.

The technology has it's limitations though. Not only do you need a web cam but also a printer to activate it. Add to that one requires a download and installation of an application you cut your potential audience down considerably. That said I enjoy watching the videos and demos as much as interacting with it myself.

If you know of any interesting applications for AR please comment below. I know there is much more out there and my limited research was focused on the advertising and marketing side rather than the tech and art side.

Augmented Reality!? That's so 2008
Has AR jumped the shark? Well if Virtual Magicians are using it I think that's your answer. For me the best application of this is in store and also with kids toys. Both applications have far more useful applications than a fun web toy.

Below are 35 great examples of where Augmented Reality and their applications to the commercial and art world.

Correction Update: Apologies to Metaio who I incorrectly forgot to credit as the technology behind the Mini and Lego examples. This is why you don't post at 1am :)

I had not seen any arcade style games in AR before this. Fun and stupid and it was meant to be.

Agency: Poke London [UK]
View | More Info
GE Smart Grid
For such a dry subject this execution generated a lot of buzz.

Agency: Goodby, Silverstein & Partners [US]

Assassins Creed 2 Teaser
Gamers love hidden codes and content and this was the first video game site to use AR.

Agency: Unknown

Earth Hour World in Your Hands
So the way to save the world is to print out useless paper?

Agency: Wunderman [AU]
Relapse 3D Art Comp
Turning the logo into an art canvas was nice idea. Too bad the entries in the comp are so shite.

Agency: Outside Line [UK]

Doritos Sweet Chili
Wow packaging with AR is already here. Doritos moved fast.

Living Sasquatch
It's a video editor with a 3D Sasquatch. Quite impressive and the video record feature is great.

Agency: Boffswana [AU]

Mini Germany Demo
This was the first big brand example I saw last year. Couldn't get it to work on my laptop :(

Agency: Unknown
Technology: Metaio
View | Case Study

Papas Road Trip Virtual Ride
Another brand with their packaging altered to have AR codes.

Agency: Unknown

Nissan Good Decision
The decision maker and then AR surprise at the end is nice.

Agency: Unknown

Ray-Ban Virtual Mirror
Probably the most practical application I've seen online. Too bad another download is needed

Agency: Unknown
Technology: Fitting Box [FR]
Topps Virtual Playing Cards
I wish this was around when I collected playing cards. The possibilities are endless.

Technology: Total Immersion

Night at the Museum 2 Comes to Life
Half promotion for the film half promotion for the news paper.

Agency: Soap [AU]
Technology: Total Immersion

USPS Priority Mail Box Simulator
A semi useful application of Augmented Reality.

Agency: AKQA [US]

Family Football Virtual Trophy

Agency: TBWA | Special Moves [UK]
View Note: Currently not on site

Experience the Enterprise
Paramount went all out on this execution for Star Trek.

Agency: Unknown
Technology: Total Immersion

Join Star Fleet Academy
Another Star Trek augmented reality promo.

Agency: Unknown
McDonalds Dippers Game
Agency: Unknown
ADIDAS Virtual Avatar
Agency: Unknown
Technology: Total Immersion
Lego Store at Disney Land
This must blow kid's minds and parent's wallets.

Technology: Metaio
View | PR
Eye of Judgment for PS3
Consoles are also getting in on the action.

Nissan Cube
Agency: Unknown
Fanta Games
Fanta pushing the mobile aspect of the technology.

Agency: Ogilvy
View | More Info
BMW Z4 in 3D
I love the real life montage of the car. Takes this to a new level of fun.

Agency: Dare [UK]
View | More Info
Toyota IQ Reality
Agency: Unknown
BMW Factory R&D
Not just brands.

Artists, tech heads and musicians are getting into Augmented Reality as well. Here's some non branded examples.
Virtual Drumkit
Looking for this to be re-skinned for a brand soon

By: Squidder
Augmented Reality T-Shirts + Twitter
Status= "I'm wearing a Twitter shirt!"

By: Squidder
Augmented Reality Mobile Game: Catapult
I want this now!

By: Unknown
Level heads
This looks like a lot of fun

Agency: Julian Oliver
Augmented Reality Card Trick
By: Virtual Magician

Julian Perretta's 3d video for "Ride My Star" music video

Agency: Unknown

The Artvertiser
I love how anti-advertising the art world is.

Arhrrrrrr Zombie Game (look for the Skittles integration!)
I missed this at GDC. Looks fantastic.

By: GVU Center's Augmented Environments Lab at Georgia Tech, in collaboration with SCAD-Atlanta
Augmented Reality Snow Flakes
Agencies jumped in for the 2008 Xmas card rush

Agency: Tellart
Special Moves Xmas
Agency: Special Movies [UK]
View Thanks Iain for the video

McCaan Funky Natal
Agency: McCaan [BR]
View | More Info
Scope Augmented Reality Toys
There isnt a toy executive alive that woulnd't get excited by this.

By: Frantz Lasorne
More Info


There are two main ways to achieve Augmented Reality in a browser.

1: Dedicated Plugin:

- Total Immersion:This French company has been the leader in the Augmented Reality field for commercial use. If you are after the best qality 3D this is the one to go with.

Link: Official Site

- Metaio: This German based company is big competitor to Total Immersion and has been behind some of the latest campaigns for Mini and Lego.

Link: Official Site

Pros: Higher quality 3D
Cons: Costly licence fee, no community, single vendor, custom code language, large file size, new plugin required

2: Flash: Can be integrated into any flash site and works with Flash 8+
No plugin, small file size, open source, community, flash is a common skill
Lower quality 3D

There is also various other technologies which could be used but all have limited web capabilities.

Many universities have Augmented Reality research labs and I think we'll start to see this technology get more mature over the next few years as commercial applications for it start to materialize.

More Reading

I got most of the examples and more info from the following sites/articles.
Yotube Search

There are also two blogs dedicated to AR which have even more examples

If you have any other good examples of branded and unbranded Augmented Reality please submit them to us at submit [at]

I can't mention augmented reality without showing this video.

If you enjoyed this feature you might also like our advertising features on Media Buys Creatives Will Love, Sexiest Banner Ads, Crowded Ads, Agency Xmas Cards 2008, 2007 & 2006 the 2008 US Election

April 22, 2009


Ha ha.

A minor work of genius from Poke.

Here I was twittering about how crap the iPhone apps for Westpac and Commbank were, and how they've jumped in without thinking:

"Lets do an iPhone app (or was that the agency) - "yeah" and then... What they end up with is a glorified portal on the iphone linking to the netbank etc through the browser within the iphone. Granted they both use your GPS to show you where a branch or ATM are.. but I want something a bit more useful (or fun - like a lightsaber) from my apps - even if they are for free.

Like, maybe, an iphone banking app that uses cool stuff to make my transactions easier and fun - at least? I mean I keep hearing from hardcore coders that there's a fairly hefty investment in programming apps, and why would you bother for something that's solved with a couple of bookmarks in existing app?

And then i saw this - it even make sme sound smarter - like I'm British or sumfink.

it's a lot "cleaner" than an idea which I was floating about a few months back - it has a mouth, but not as much talking. If anyone wants to put their hand up to program "that" then email me now, please

January 6, 2009

Midori-San:The Blogging Houseplant

This is insane.


A tech company in Japan has set up an interface that allows a houseplant to actually blog its 'thoughts'.

The plant interface system, uses surface potential sensors to read the weak bioelectric current flowing across the surface of the leaves. This natural current fluctuates in response to changes in the immediate environment, such as temperature, humidity, vibration, electromagnetic waves and nearby human activity. A specially developed algorithm translates this data into Japanese sentences, which are used for the plant’s daily blog posts.


Of course, it's in Japanese so I can't tell if the plants' blog is informative or entertaining. For all I know It could be just blogging about the Dancing Baby from Ally McBeal.

Kick-ass technology though.

Via Pink Tentacle.

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