This site showcases the (mostly) digital work of Andrew DiFiore from both Virtual Arts Studios and answerYES Interactive as well as random thoughts and experimental projects too volatile to be contained anywhere else.

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    Google Earth Eyes North Korea

    Now that North Korea has declared the US their “archenemy” (see Steve Colbert’s hilarious take on this), I guess it is a good thing Google Earth now enables every American citizen to keep a watchful eye on Kim Jong-un and the rest of Pyongyang. Here is a “secret” prison called Camp 22 recently revealed by Google Earth.

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    In celebration of 40 years Down Under, McDonald’s will change the name of 13 restaurants to Macca’s for a month starting on Australia Day (that be today, mate).

    Give a lot of credit to McDonald’s for having fun with their brand… and to the ballsy Mad Men at DDB who pitched it.

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    Cool Tool of the Month: Google Drive

    It goes without saying that Google offers up a lot of “cool tools” so it should not be surprising that any number of Google products qualify to be featured here. Some tools are better than others but Google as a company encourages its developers and engineers to experiment… and we “early adopters” benefit as informal beta testers. This has been a trend for many years. Innovate first, profit later, because you may not know just what you have until the crowdsource shows you the way.

    This month’s Cool Tool is Google Drive. With Google Drive you get up to 5 GB of disk space on Google’s cloud that can store any type of file. For $2.50 a month you can upgrade to 25 GB.

    Google Docs is now part of Google Drive so you can access your files anywhere, anytime, and share them and edit them with others in real time. That seems pretty cool.

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    Gangnam Style by Psy

    By now you have seen (or at  least heard) the song Gangnam Style by South Korean pop star Park Jae-sang better known as Psy.

    No doubt, if you have been to a Wedding or Bar Mitzvah in the last six months, everybody was doing it Gangnam Style.

    Well, on December 21, 2012, the catchy dance track officially became the first music video to break one billion views on YouTube, rocketing pass previous record holder — Justin Bieber’s music video Baby — by more that a quarter million.

    Truly a “Where’s the Beef” moment. And Psy is Clara Peller.

    Gangnam Style is now so engrained into the world’s collective consciousness that when future generations poke fun of us by striking the cowboy pose, we will all immediately chuckle in shame.

    What the hell is Gangnam Style anyway?

    Well, you don’t have to Google it as I’m geek enough to have done this for you. Gangnam (or Gangnam-gu) literally means “south of the river” and it one of the most affluent districts in Seoul. It is also where Psy was born. ABS CBN News did a nice little guide about here.

    The La Jolla Playhouse put on an elaborate musical theatre adaptation of The Flaming Lips‘ experimental rock song Yoshimi Battles the Pink Robots (November 6 through December 16, 2012), featuring a 14 foot robot puppet. Story is by Wayne Coyne (frontman for The Flaming Lips) and Tony Award winning director Des McAnuff (The Who’s Tommy, Jersey Boys, Jesus Christ Superstar).

    Like so many musicals adapted from popular rock bands, it is hit or miss if the musical score can carry a thin story line. Time will tell whether we will be seeing “pink robots” flying around on The Great White Way. Nevertheless, Wayne Coyne is fearless in his pursuit of pushing the envelop in what is considered acceptable mainstream art. The world needs more.