Remember back before Chuck E. Cheese? Showbiz Pizza Place was the original family fun spot, with the animatronic performing band…Rock-a-fire Explosion, powered by ’70s technology.

This “show”, or set of pneumatic-driven band members (originally designed and manufactured by Creative Engineering) are being rebuilt and upgraded by Jason Rudolph in West Seattle, currently at a large, vacant retail space (formerly Petco). Jason is looking at new ways to control the band and to create new shows. First step is to rehabilitate the vintage band members.


Under-the-latex, all moving parts are actuated with compressed air-powered cylinders.


This is essentially a communications hub, which handles all of the switching for the pneumatic controls-currently a Tivo is sending the show controls’ timing through a bundle of wires with data that tells the band how to move and when to move, so that it syncs with the music.

Watch the Rock-afire Explosion documentary film trailer.

I just bumped into this new project reading about canadian experimental graphic designer and over the top type creator Marian Bantjes’ magic toothbrush!

Objectified is a feature-length independent documentary about industrial design. It’s a look at the creativity at work behind everything from toothbrushes to tech gadgets. It’s about the people who re-examine, re-evaluate and re-invent our manufactured environment on a daily basis. It’s about personal expression, identity, consumerism, and sustainability. It’s about our relationship to mass-produced objects and, by extension, the people who design them.

Through vérité footage and in-depth conversations, the film documents the creative processes of some of the world’s most influential designers, and looks at how the things they make impact our lives. What can we learn about who we are, and who we want to be, from the objects with which we surround ourselves?

Read director Gary Hustwit’s post about the film.

Objectified is currently in production and will have its world premiere in early 2009

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There’s a simple pleasure in life that some people use as a substitute for coffee, cigarettes, chocolate and other small things like these. And it’s throwing your nose in a brand new fresh out of printshop magazine and/or newspaper. To fulfill your thirst for knowledge about the magic world of press, i’m gonna share with you this juicy blog i just bumped into.


magCulture is a site about magazine and (occasionally) newspaper design written by Jeremy Leslie, author of the books ‘magCulture’ and ‘Issues’.

It grew from a previous website which is no longer maintained but is still accessible here. Jeremy is Executive Creative Director at London-based customer publisher John Brown. He regularly contributes to the design press and speaks at conferences, and is co-curator (with Andrew Losowsky and Mike Koedinger) of the Colophon independent magazine symposium.

Buona lettura.