Blog Bayou

A rolling collection of cool videos, articles and ideas from all over the web.

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The Backyard Makeover

As I’ve added more and more trees to my Bonsai collection of the years, the backyard has become a bit if a dumping ground. The plan has always been to get things organized, but life has a way of putting higher priority things in front of you.

So I finally bit the bullet, rolled up my sleeves and get busy. Here are a few pics of the before state. I installed pedestals a few years ago along the back fence, but the grass growing around them made them a real pain in the butt. On the side yard, there was a makeshift bench made of a few planks laid across cinder block stacks. Once that space was filled-up, I started putting other trees-in-training on the ground along the fence. It’s my own fault. Every now & then I get the urge to go hunting for new material.

Anyway, here’s the project.

Before

Yeah, you can see how the artistic aesthetic of such a zen hobby and artform could be lessened by an untidy, cluttered area. The first thing I did was prepare the ground for a little simplification. We removed grassy areas and leveled the dirt in preparation for landscaping fabric which would be the lining for the stepping stones and river rocks to go on top of.

Having help from crew NextGen is always a huge plus. Ruben and Marcos Masters helped Aden and & I make steady progress throughout the day. The 98 degree day!

I built a new bench to accommodate all my trees, with a little extra room so I could add to the collection over time. The new bench will span the full side yard length of fence, 53 feet!

Poor planning caused the fence boards behind it to rot from constant moisture. I replaced some of the fence boards that were rotted away, but later decided that it was best to replace the whole length of them. Afterwards, staining and Sealing them (which I should have done from the beginning) will ensure they have a longer shelf life.

After

The end result came out pretty decent. The auto-watering system line runs across the back of the bench, with dedicated microdrip lines for each tree.  The continuous bench enables adequate spacing for each tree, and makes for a nice backdrop for Instagram shots…

Once the rocks were delivered, the finish line was in sight. And though it took a good 6 hours to get them all shoveled into place, the end result was well worth it.

 

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Protected: Dos hermanos, un camino

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Protected: April Fool’s & The Tree Amigos

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FDA’s Anti-Tobacco Campaign

The FDA just launched it’s new anti-tobacco “The Real Cost” campaign, targeting at-risk teens. 8,000 young people will be monitored over the next two years to see if the campaign has any effect. It’s expected to cost $400 million, which will come from fees paid to the US by Big Tobacco.

The tables are turning on tobacco, and there’s emphasis being placed on teens who are in the industry’s crosshairs. They are being sought after as the replacement customers for those that die every day from tobacco-related illnesses. Here are the spots from the FDA’s “The Real Cost” campaign.

 

 

The Center for Disease Control and Prevention relaunched their “Tips from Former Smokers” campaign and anti-smoking group Legacy will also debut a media campaign this summer in an attempt to combat the $8 billion marketing efforts by the tobacco industry each year.

In addition to that, CVS made a game-changing move by announcing it will no longer sell tobacco products in its thousands of retail stores. Things should get interesting…

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Protected: ACES Go Green Contest Video

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2013 Doodles

Meetings – it seems we can never have enough of them. And what gets any Attention Deficit-riddled creative through even the most boring meeting that’s gone an hour longer than anyone can stand? Doodling!

Here are a few meeting doodles from 2013 meetings I’ve endured that give me a chuckle when I look at them.

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The Precision of Lexus

In an effort to connect hyper-precision and innovation to their brand, Lexus released this spot entitled “Amazing in Motion” featuring the harmoniously synchronized flight sequence of a swarm of micro-drones. They curiously explore a range of indoor environments before finally navigating their way to freedom above the city’s towering skyline.

The spot was made possible through a collaboration with the great minds at KMel Robotics. They developed a suite of tools to program and control the swarm of quadcopters, including the adaptation of an infrared motion capture system—typically used for computer animation. This system allowed them to track each drone in mid-flight, and individually direct them to where they need to be.

The net result is a visually stunning and memorable association with the brand. And if you’ve ever tried to pilot a quadcopter yourself, only to send it face-first into a wall, you’ll have an added level of appreciation for what they’ve done. Here’s the behind-the-scenes video showing what went into the project.

 

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Chipotle Launches Assault on Big Food

“The Scarecrow” is a 3-1/2-minute film that Chipotle Mexican Grill released online that depicts what the brand calls “a dystopian fantasy world” in which “all food production is controlled by fictional industrial giant Crow Foods. Scarecrows have been displaced from their traditional role of protecting food, and are now servants to the crows and their evil plans to dominate the food system.”

Read the full article here

 

 

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Is There Real Worth in Social Currency?

What exactly is a “Like” worth these days? While brands navigate the tides of “like-currency,” it turns out that the gesture doesn’t translate into anything significant for social causes. UNICEF Sweden is restating the obvious – donate money and supplies—not just virtual support. The sort of it all, “Likes don’t save lives. Money does.”

Check out the full story here.

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Anti-Sleep & Drive App

Café Amazon in Thailand created a very useful app with social responsibility while still finding a way to push product. The best part is, they did it in a way that doesn’t feel forced or trite.

It’s pretty simple:
Launch the app and mount your phone on the windshield
It uses facial recognition to scan for eye fatigue
If a driver’s eyes shut for a moment the app sounds an alarm, waking the driver
It then directs you to the nearest Café Amazon for caffeine fix

It’s simple and brilliant.

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