Last night, a PR person contacted me and said to expect a mysterious "puzzle piece" to arrive the next morning. I steepled my fingers, squeezed in my monocle, and warned her that it was unlikely that we'd participate in a marketing thing like that.
It arrived anyway. It turned out, however, to be a gigantic 3D-printed robot head. My heart softened just a little at this, not least because of the irony embodied by how thoroughly FedEx had managed to destroy it, despite the enormous padded box it came in. It's amazing how good FedEx is at destroying packages. Protip: don't send organs via FedEx, even if it's just a hobby.
It turns out that the puzzle is part of a code, and a bunch of tech blogs all have to punch theirs in at the website for a new Droid cellular handset. This will unlock something. "Something" presumably being "an ad", right? So I found the code and punched it in, just to be a good sport. But it didn't work. Their flash site just said "Verifying Code" and never did. At this, I said oh well!, then got on with my day.
So now, of course, all the other sites have done their bit and Boing Boing is being harangued on Twitter by Droid fans to get with the program. Sneaky, intelligent PR here. But this makes it interesting! What should I do? Let's vote:
1) Just punch it in! Also, your pious avoidance of naming the advertiser is vaguely irritating, because you've posted it anyway and we're just going to go and look it up now. I have eight credit cards.
2) Post a picture of the code with a rival manufacturer's logo concealing a couple of digits, leaving a few hundred possible combinations to try.
2B) and dont post it until 1 minute remains on the 'deadline' countdown at the puzzle website.
3) Screw 'em.
THE CHOICE IS YOURS!
UPDATE: 11:45 a.m. - I am informed by PR that they have triggered our code entry without any further action from us.
♫ I HAD A FEELING/
I HAD A FEELING ONCE/
UNTIL SOMEONE TOOK IT AWAY/
UNTIL SOMEONE TOOK IT AWAY (OH YEAH) ♭
Researchers from MIT and the University of Southern California 3D printed tiny, and quite beautiful, sculptures out of two different materials that usually expand when heated. But the specific architectures of these sugarcube-sized sculptures instead enable them to shrink when heated. The effect is similar to a Hoberman sphere, the wonderful isokinetic toy sculpture that […]
In the entry of Prince’s home-turned-museum, visitors walk past a 3D-printed ceramic replica of the building they just entered. What some may not realize is that the scale replica is in fact an urn containing Prince’s cremains.
MIT researchers developed a method to 3D print robots with soft, shock-absorbing materials that can be “programmed” to desired elasticity to protect bouncing bots, drones making hard landings, and eventually phones, shoes, helmets and other materials. From MIT News: For example, after 3-D printing a cube robot that moves by bouncing, the researchers outfitted it […]
TV antennas are making a comeback, and the Ghost Indoor HDTV antenna is a great example of why. Unlike the old bunny ear-style antennas, this compact antenna is barely noticeable and picks up channels easily. Plus with the addition of streaming services like Netflix, we find ourselves with plenty to watch without a pricey monthly cable bill. The Ghost […]
I’ve never really felt the need to purchase a smartwatch because a lot of them aren’t very functional, but at just shy of $30, the Martian Notifier Smartwatch was worth checking out. For that low of a price, it actually does feature an impressive amount of functionality, and comes in handy when you don’t want to be carrying around your […]
Geek Fuel is a subscription delivery service that caters to those of us that love comics, gaming, and general geek culture. Every month, Geek Fuel will assemble a box of goodies with a value of $50 or over. The specific items are a mystery, but you’ll always get an exclusive t-shirt not found anywhere else, a full […]