Reboot GIFs

Andrew Forgrave has given a wonderful introduction to the 1990s Reboot series, and how fun it is to create GIFs from the Number 7 episode (available on the Prisoner106 Archive page). Today I watched the episode, and once again realize that so much has been created in niches of popular culture that I have not visited. We all have gaps, and it is often fun and worthwhile to fill them.

Of the three GIFs I made and present here, the first one turned out to be one of the scenes Andrew chose. If you would like, view them both in separate windows so you can compare our interpretations. It is the scene where Rover once again traps a prisoner.

Help Me!

Help Me!

The other scene I chose is a bit more abstract, and required a slight bit of work. Since the point of view was slightly panning, and the face of the character Megabyte was also moving, I chose to crop the image to just the masks.

We're Watching You!

We Know Who You Are!

Attribution: frames for these GIFs taken from the You Tube video of Reboot, copyright 1997 by ReBoot III Productions. Used under fair use for educational and parody purposes.

Who’s Two? GIF

There are two people who have done a lot of work to make the Prisoner106 summer Village vacation special. I have made a special GIF to honor the hidden committee that (I think) put it all together. Maybe I’m wrong, but these two are special anyway.

2 is more than a number

2 is more than a number

I know that everyone else is special, too. Don’t feel left out! You all have your number, and that number is 106.

Attribution and method: Original images came from the ds106 ~club for each, http://ds106.club/~talkytina and http://ds106.club/~aforgrave. Once imported into GIMP, resized as needed to make them the same, I found “blend” under Animation in the Filters menu. This calculated and added a few extra frames that were meant to provide a smoother transition from start to end. However, it turned out a bit glitchy, which I like. I added a few hundred milliseconds to the original portraits to allow them to stand out better in the animation.

Week Six INFORMATION – Advanced Audio and Radio Show

Is Number 2 waiting for INFORMATION?

Is Number 2 waiting for INFORMATION?

So it looks like the administration of The Village is in some sort of disarray. For those going on with the weekly agenda during your vacation, may I suggest:

Follow the guidelines found at Open ds106 Unit 7. This includes guidance on audio work and information about the radio project.

Find more episodes to view. I got them from Daily Motion, but they may be available elsewhere. Save episodes 16 and 17 for last, to be watched sequentially.

Start on your final project, anticipated for Vacation Week Seven, next week. More details at Open ds106 Unit 12.

Personally, I am not doing a radio show, but hope to squeeze in a project. August is not a vacation month.

Also, make GIFs!

Keep on Chopping

Keep on Chopping

Home by Curfew & Week Five Summary

Well, it’s been video week, and I finally made a quick little video at the end of it.

This was made by clipping some frames from The Prisoner episode 9 “Checkmate” using MPEGStreamclip, exporting them to a folder. I first tried them as a GIF, but didn’t like a GIF that stopped. But I recalled that we’re supposed to make movies this week, so I opened Windows Movie Maker and imported all the frames. I had to adjust the time for each frame, as they were set by default to seven seconds; I chose a .3 second for each frame. Then I had to find suitable audio. Since I already had Big Ben’s chimes, I took a section of that into Audacity and applied the Paulstretch effect by a factor of two, which slowed it down a bit and made it sound interesting.

Overall, the effect is kind of like Cinderella needing to leave the ball before the stroke of midnight. I did not add title or credits because this is more of an experiment than anything. But, by way of credits, the video did come from The Prisoner, and the audio came from the UK Government.

Early in the week, when Number Two failed to post the assignments in a timely manner, I went ahead and made three GIFs, repeated here but you can see more of a write-up in the previous post.

Artist and His Art

Artist and His Art

Laughing at Number Six

Laughing at Number Six

Dem bones

Dem bones

Other than that, I guess I did a couple of Daily Creates and some other minor photographs for We’re Here! on Flickr. I was a bit busy with an extra consulting gig on top of regular teaching this week, but it all worked out.

And I'm Still Looking for INFORMATION!

And I’m Still Looking for INFORMATION!

Just fun between assignments

There seems to be a disruption in the ether. The new new new new Number 2 hasn’t posted any Week Five assignments yet, so I just relaxed in the bungalow with an Independent Study student and a contract consulting gig I’ve got this week.

But, GIFs!

Artist and His Art

Artist and His Art

This first one shows the creative spirit at work in The Village. Our Number Six had sat for a portrait, and when the work was revealed, it really was quite an abstraction of INFORMATION. I’ve desaturated the artwork to remove color, and allowed it to cycle through the options of lightness, luminosity, and average. I’m doing better on file size by selecting just the painting so I don’t have all the frames showing all the image.

Laughing at Number Six

Laughing at Number Six

Here’s another easy one. All I had to do was import episode 15 into MPEGStreamclip, select the in and out points, clip, export, and import into GIMP. Then trim a few frames and export as a GIF. This episode has so many GIFfable scenes, especially at the carnival.

Dem bones

Dem bones

And, finally for tonight, a snippet from the final episode. I won’t comment in case you haven’t seen it yet. Make sure you have seen all the others first!

Be Seeing You

Be Seeing You

Week four summary

What's the buzz? Tell me what's happenin'

What’s the buzz? Tell me what’s happenin’

First, the summary of what I did this week:

Four Daily Creates
An “I Can Read” Prisoner-themed book
A few animated GIFs
An animated comic book cover
An investigation into how The Tally Ho is made
Plus, comments on the work of others. Tweets and Twitter interactions.
And dredged up a little html knowledge to repost a Patrick McGoohan interview whose original page was broken.

During this week, we were considering Design with a capital D. I read the assignments. Nothing really new for me, but good reminder to go beyond the basics. Little known personal fact: I started college as an art major. I did well in the first two design courses, but not-so-well in drawing. I dropped out and joined the Navy to learn electronics. I later considered leaving the Navy and to study design at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, but reenlisted instead. I am no expert, so it was good to revisit the principles.

Some details:
In creating the animated cover of Jack Kirby’s The Prisoner, I was brought into the world of comics and sequential storytelling. I’ve been here before. I grew up on comic books, still enjoy the daily comic strips, and have dug a bit into the literary theory of comics. My next step is to acquire Nick Sousanis’ Unflattening, a book of his doctoral thesis in comic-book format. I expect it will give me insight into new ways to investigate other literary and artistic forms, and even life itself.

Comics are Literature

Comics are Literature

Speaking of investigating, I enjoyed my pseudo-scientific but real-learning looks at The Tally Ho and the design of Number 2’s Seal of Office. This brings up an underlying theme of the show and of art in general: what we see is a representation. It was created, and there may be artifacts of the creative process to observe. At a minimum, this could be bad art (such as microphones showing up in a movie); but, at a higher level, it points to a reality behind what we perceive.

Making an animated maze was almost trivial with an online generator. But there was a comment about having never seen an animated puzzle before. I thought about it, and wonder how an animated maze could be a challenge but actually workable, if it was slow enough, and the paths were clearly seen. Pursue this if you dare!

Prisoner106 in a Maze

Prisoner106 in a Maze

I was glad to see the book creations of our prisoner106 colleagues. I’ve been a book-lover since childhood, and have been known to buy a book for its cover. Designing and creating one is a different task. One must think of the design elements, but also marketing and legal items. Will this cover design attract a buyer? Do we have proper identification and pricing information? How about copyright notices and permissions? There is more to it that we might think.

The Village Story Book

The Village Story Book as seen on The Prisoner

For the Daily Creates, I completed two written creations and two images. The writing is something I approach light-heartedly, letting the words flow (if they start). Keeping it themed to The Prisoner made it interesting. The two images this time turned out to be collages made with public domain sources found at the Internet Archive Book Images on Flickr.

Seven Tone Pump Organ

Seven Tone Pump Organ

Why the Chicken Crossed the Road

Why the Chicken Crossed the Road

One additional experiment I performed this week was to try to merge the creative worlds of prisoner106 and the We’re Here! Flickr group. This had mixed results, with some confusion about what was going on. However, I think that it was useful as an experience to stretch the minds of those who participated.

A philosophical aside:
Today’s sermon was presented by a guest speaker, a Navy Chaplain whose D.Min. thesis is related to serving the needs of a pluralistic society. A major theme of today’s talk was related to a major theme of The Prisoner: how valid are our experiences as representing objective reality? The one statement he made that stands in my mind (paraphrased) is: “Experience is important, but experience needs to be linked to the content, the INFORMATION, the truth.”

When we see Number 6 experience hallucinations, even living out a full life under the delusion of drugs (think of episode 14 Living in Harmony), he usually doesn’t recognize the truth of his experience until he wakes up back in the Village. One exception is episode 3 A. B. and C., where he learns the truth, then is able to maintain his identity and control the next hallucinatory sequence.

How should we think about and apply these concepts to ourselves, to our everyday life? Maybe one way is to realize that (in any sphere of life) our experiences are our own, and may be similar to the experiences of others, but we shouldn’t equate them with others. We should seek to understand the underlying reality, the objective truth, that caused or mediated the experience, rather than thinking of the experience as the truth itself. I know that there is a tendency to shy away from thoughts of objective truth, of objective reality. Yet, if we make our own experience and perception the only “truth”, then we must admit to billions of “truths” all in some degree of conflict.

Be Seeing You

Be Seeing You

ROOK GIF, because

What's he up to?

What’s he up to?

Well, I just thought another GIF would be good to finish the day. I’ve already commented on the chess puzzle in The Tally Ho, so I thought that puzzle could be animated. All frames taken from the Checkmate episode of The Prisoner.

It turns out that the entire sequence of writing the word ROOK takes 10 seconds. Using MPEGStreamclip, even saving at 8 frames per second gives 80 images. I actually gave up after the program seemed to time out. So I actually had to reset the in and out points a couple of extra times to get the frames I wanted. Anyway, I have some extras to mess around with some other day.

Importing selected images into GIMP as layers made it trivial to export as a GIF. The first try had too much of a blue cast, so I went back and desaturated all layers. Then I needed to adjust the timing, settling on 180ms for all but the final frame, which is 800ms. Since this sequence doesn’t smoothly wrap back to the beginning, I thought it best that the checkmark would have a bit of a lag before repeating the action.

I like the slight movement of the paper as Number Six writes the letters. The shadowing makes the sequence more realistic.

Be seeing you, tomorrow!