Archive for the ‘Entertainment’ Category

Skywrite slims down

November 25, 2011

Towards the end of 2010 our very own Ruth Walters embarked on a massive personal challenge when she vowed to run a marathon. Over the following weeks Skywrite was enthralled by the amazing diet and training regimes that she underwent! It almost felt like we were going through it as a team – although we clearly were not.

Ruth is now on a bride-to-be body blitz. After completing the marathon in April, she’s hung up the running trainers and switched her focus to lifting weights and eating a LOT of protein. So impressed with Ruth’s success, the rest of the Skywrite ladies have jumped on the health and fitness bandwagon!

Here are some of the diets and exercise regimes that ARE whetting the appetite in Skywrite: 

  1. Fish and Greens – enjoying the health benefits that oily fish has to offer
  2. Zumba – proves that exercise really can be fun
  3. Cod Liver Oil – the fishy theme continues
  4. Running for the train – getting little bursts of exercise where we can
  5. Frothy Slime – a nutrient supplement drink that contains Spirulina

We’re hiring!

November 3, 2011

Alright everyone, it’s time to dust off those CVs.

Skywrite is looking for both account managers and senior account executives to assist across our portfolio of corporate and consumer accounts.

Work would include everything from technology and telecoms accounts to pure play consumer. This is a great opportunity to work across a broad spectrum of different clients – including some of the biggest brands out there!

Email emma.hazan@skywritepr.com for more information!

18-24 year olds send on average 110 texts a day

September 21, 2011

What? Doth mine eyes deceive me? Surely this story can’t be right?

Firstly – how do they have that many friends that they need to contact every day, and secondly, what do they have to chat about at such length?

I fall into this category, being 24, and I can safely say, hand on heart, I send nowhere NEAR that amount of texts. Nor have I ever. I appreciate that this is on average, but worryingly, that means there are some in this age group who send way more than the average.

These findings lend themselves nicely to the amount of chatter we hear about people being addicted to their mobile phones – with research from Ofcom finding that ‘60% [of teens] admitting to being ‘highly’ addicted to their phones.’ This survey takes it one step further, by revealing that ‘the study also shows that smartphones have begun to intrude on our most private moments, with 47% of teenagers admitting to using their device in the toilet. Only 22% of adults confessed to the same habit.’ Eww.

It’s true that smartphones are totally ubiquitous these days – they do everything for you: let you stay in touch with friends/family, read news on the move, watch TV, listen to the radio, and basically stay on top of your social life by acting as a calendar. They even have games to keep you entertained on a long journey – who needs Travel Connect4 now?

Going back to the texting element though, I do wonder if we’ll soon be seeing more and more injuries caused as a result of too much texting. Research that dates back as far as 2006 shows that millions suffer from RSI’ – so surely it’s not too much of a leap to expect that figure to now be in the billions? The NHS has a page set up dedicated to causes/symptoms of RSI that’s due for update in February 2012. I don’t think it’s unrealistic to imagine that one of the causes to be added on to that list will be ‘texting’.

Five of the best: Game intros

July 11, 2011

They say that a good beginning is half the battle, so some of us at Skywrite towers have put our heads together to come up with our top 5 PC game intros of all time.

Quake 2:

The Quake series was never really big on plot or character development, but id Software certainly put together a perfectly balanced first person shooter. Nevertheless, at a time when intro cinematics were the status quo, the opening to Quake 2 managed to stand out from the crowd. From the creepy voiceover which fills in some back-story, to an exhilarating drop-ship sequence that’s vaguely reminiscent of Aliens, the intro movie sets the tone for the entire game very effectively – and it blends perfectly into the gun-toting action.

BioShock:

Any game that throws a plane crash at you and THEN a bathysphere ride has to score high marks. The reveal of the game’s underwater setting, Rapture, is among the most glorious of any gaming sequence. For a second it’s actually hard to believe that all this is being rendered in-engine. Nevertheless, the intro also manages to feed you some useful information on the political back-story of the city, which will, of course, come back to the foreground later on.

Freespace 2:

A year after Freespace had given the space combat sim a much needed shake-up, Freespace 2 arrived on the scene. Set 30 years after the original, the intro cinematic bridges this time gap perfectly. A ferocious space battle before the main title cuts to the aging and gutted debris of the capital ships years afterwards. Plus the voiceover perfectly sets the brooding tone of the entire game.

Half-Life:

Valve Software took a different approach to its seminal first person shooter by ensuring that all of the game’s action takes place from the main character’s point of view. Only a few games had tried this before (notably Unreal) and the intro is no different. For a game that has some of the most memorable action sequences ever created, the opening is very understated: you sit on a tram on your way to work, heading deep into the Black Mesa Facility. This sequence does three things: it grounds you inside a “real” world, it ensures you realise just how isolated you are inside this enormous facility and it hints at all not being well in the complex…

Total Annihilation:

This was a one-hit wonder of the RTS world, which never received the sequel it very much deserved. The cinematic intro sets up the conflict between the ARM and the CORE, as you move from one Commander to the other across a hectic battlefield. It’s a great way to introduce the sheer variety of tactical options that this game opened up to players and the orchestral score perfectly backs up the high-octane action.

That’s it from us, do comment below with your own suggestions!

Playing into the hands of pirates?

February 23, 2011

Priracy is a growing threat for all digital content

We just noticed an interesting blog from Fred Wilson, a venture capitalist who found that he needed to become a pirate in order to get hold of the latest Streets album. Despite struggling with iTunes, eMusic and Amazon US, Fred could not find the record:

“It was not even listed in iTunes or emusic. It was listed on Amazon US as an import that would be available on Feb 15th, but only in CD form. I’m not buying plastic just to rip the files and throw it out. Seeing as it was an import, I searched Amazon UK. And there I found the record in mp3 form for 4 pounds. It was going to be released on Feb 4th. I made a mental note to come back and get it when it was released. I got around to doing that today. I clicked on “buy with one click” and was greeted with this nonsense” (i.e. not being able to purchase music from outside the UK) “…so reluctantly, I went to a bit torrent search. I found plenty of torrents for the record and quickly had the record in mp3 form. That took less than a minute compared to the 20+ minutes I wasted trying pretty hard to buy the record legally.”

Given the global nature of the internet, and its rapidly increasing access speeds, does it any longer make sense for the same digital content to be released to different regions of the world at varying times?

Surely this plays into the hands of pirates, and – as in Fred’s case – makes it more likely for legitimate paying customers to turn to piracy to download the music they want to listen to?

Five of the best: Viral Videos

August 13, 2010

Welcome back to the Skywrite blog. Are you ready to receive your punishment? Then I’ll begin.

It takes a special kind of video to make the leap from throwaway snippet of content on YouTube to global phenomenon. Nevetheless, every year, a few make the cut and spread around the world faster than Salmonella on a cruise ship.

While marketers worldwide continue to try to lay down the rules of how to create successful viral content, let’s look at some of the videos that have already shown the way…

Leeroy Jenkins (2006)

A clip from World of Warcraft didn’t seem that promising as viral premises go, but it’s the running conversation between the assembled nerds that makes this one unmissable. “Leeeeeeeeeeroy Jeeeeeeeeenkins!” has undoubtedly become the rallying cry for desperate madmen everywhere.

 Keyboard Cat (2009)

Who can resist a cat wearing a T-Shirt, hammering out a catchy tune on a keyboard? Fatso the cat became such an internet success that you can even find a keyboard cat version of a certain annoyingly popular T-Shirt…

Leave Britney Alone! (2007)

When things looked bleak for Britney personally and professionally, Chris Crocker’s tearful plea for mercy attracted almost 2 million views in 24 hours.

David After Dentist (2009)

What happens when you mix a 7 year-old high on anaesthetic with a father whose only concern seems to be capturing the comedy gold on camera?

Grape Lady Falls (2007)

Reminiscent of “You’ve Been Framed”, there’s something timeless about watching this jovial TV presenter completely wipe-out…

Extreme poodles…

June 18, 2010
Regular readers may remember that we updated you a few months ago on some seriously niche magazines

Well, we may have one to top them all. If you’re a poodle owner and you just have to have your pooch looking slicker than the Gulf Coast, then this magazine is for you!

Groomer to Groomer is THE magazine for anyone who wants to groom their poodle almost beyond recognition. Some of these animals look so ridiculous that it’s actually rendered me speechless, so let’s just cut to the pictures –

For the love of all that's good and holy, no!

I mean, really, just get a topiary!

Captain Jack never looked so good...

Five of the best: Futuristic movie weapons

June 4, 2010

Lightsabre (Star Wars)

Recently placing as the number one best movie weapon of all time according to a poll by 20th Century Fox, the lightsabre can only be handled by those strong enough in “the force”. It can chop through anything and severed limbs are a specialty. And who can forget Star Wars kid?

Pulse Rifle (Aliens)

The only solution to your xenomorph problem. The M41-A pulse rifles were created from a Thompson SMG and a Franchi SPAS-12 shotgun. In the movie they allegedly fire 10 millimetre explosive tip caseless standard light armor piercing rounds. Strange that there are quite a few shots with ejecting brass then…

The ZF-1 (The Fifth Element) 

Redefining overkill, the Zorg ZF-1 has a titanium recharger, a 3000 round clip (with “replay button”), a rocket launcher, an arrow launcher with exploding or poisonous gas heads, a net launcher, a flamethrower, and the “Ice Cube System” which seems to be a freeze gun which fires a cloud of liquid nitrogen.

Railgun (Eraser)

A hand-held railgun with an X-ray scope, designed to complement the gun’s ability to penetrate through almost any barrier. In the movie, the EM-1 is said to fire aluminum rounds at close to the speed of light, which is dubious for all manner of reasons…

Sick Stick (Minority Report)

Apparently this weapon has just been invented for real. In the movie, the sick stick instantly makes the opponents vomit and feel sickeningly ill for some amount of time, so that they can be subdued and cuffed.

Don’t panic…

December 23, 2009

No one was leaving Copenhagen before a deal was struck

Well, we may only just be leaving the recession and job opportunities are still rarer than working trains in the Eurotunnel, but that hasn’t stopped an unknown producer from Uruguay, who uploaded a short film to YouTube in November, being offered a $30m (£18.6m) contract to make a Hollywood film.

Fede Alvarez’s short film “Ataque de Panico!” (Panic Attack!) featured giant robots invading and destroying Montevideo, the capital of Uruguay. At just under five minutes long and made on a budget of $300 (£186), it has already seen more than 1.5 million views on YouTube.

“I uploaded (Panic Attack!) on a Thursday and on Monday my inbox was totally full of e-mails from Hollywood studios,” he told the BBC’s Latin American service BBC Mundo.

Mr Alvarez has now been asked to produce is a sci-fi film to be shot in Latin America, but he will be developing an entirely new story for the project.

“If some director from some country can achieve this just uploading a video to YouTube, it obviously means that anyone could do it,” he added.

Taking a look at the film makes us think otherwise.

Depressing yet true

December 21, 2009

I’ve just read an interesting story on CNET US that is discussing the news that the state of Maine is deciding to put warning stickers on all mobile phones to be sold in shops across the state.

The story leads with this paragraph, which, effectively, sums up the whole piece: “Although there is no conclusive proof that mobile phones cause cancer, a Maine legislator wants to require all mobile phones sold in the state to carry warnings that say mobile phones may do so”. “Although there is no conclusive proof” – so WHY do it then?!

I find this bizarre – nearly everything causes cancer these days, and we all already know about it, so why strike more fear into people by putting warning stickers on phones, when it’s not even proven! Smoking, sure, I get that, but phones? The world’s going mad!


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