This month on Online Insights, we will celebrate fathers day, look at parking in a whole new light, view incredible video tricks, and think about a calendar that falls to pieces.

First though, Google unveiled a new tool in Gmail accounts since we last spoke. If you have a Gmail email account you can turn on priority sorting. This means that Google applies some clever thinking in your inbox, based on your usual email habits to help sort your more important email from less important stuff. For example, if you always open emails from certain people, they will sit at the top of your inbox and vice versa for emails you usually leave unopened or delete. Another clever tool from Google – sometimes I wonder how I’d navigate the world without them!

Fathers Day

It’s Fathers Day today and that brings us to Australian Camp Connect. I’d never heard of this group but it exists to help dads connect or reconnect with kids. It says it is all about grabbing your kids, a sleeping bag and a torch, and heading off on a journey to deeper relationships.

Their resources page page has more than 80 links to all sorts of resources from:

  • activities to do with kids
  • camping grounds
  • secret dad’s business – which has 12 tips for new dads even though one is a mixed blessing (When times are trying, remember they too will pass. Before you know it, you will have a teenager on your hands – oh, great!!!! That’s meant to make me feel better??)

Anyway, for more information, visit Camp Connect.

Parking Day

How beautiful - unless you're looking for a park!

On Friday the 17th this month (September 2010), Parking Day celebrates its fifth year of activity. Basically, the idea is that city dwellers go to any metered parking spaces they can find, feed the meter, and then decorate the space temporarily into an open park for other folk to enjoy.

Last year there were 700+ Parks in 140 Cities in 21 Countries on 6 Continents. This included some along our eastern seaboard but none in South Australia.

If you are thinking of creating some South Australian installations, there is an Adelaide Parking day group now running. Some of their tips include:

1. MAKE or find a team

2. CHOOSE a location

3. CREATE a theme and design idea

The group says that “as this is the first year of PARK(ing) Day in Adelaide we are encouraging participants to PARK in the CBD and surrounding suburbs to create a ‘cluster’ that people can visit…. we encourage you to choose a park that you can occupy at least between 12pm and 2pm.

Calendar scarf

scarf calendar

A calendar that pulls apart - like life

Every now and then a designer comes up with something interesting.

In this case, it is a calendar printed onto a long scarf for your to hang on your wall.

The year begins at the bottom and you are to pull a thread, day by day, gradually removing each day as the year progresses.

As one of the commenters pointed out – great idea until your cat discovers it, then your whole year is gone by January 2!

Take a look yourself at Alltop.

High on London

To finish with, a quirky video that shows how the job of an artist is to help us see old things in a new light.

By now, most of us have seen photographs using a special shallow depth of field technique that turns cityscape shots into photos that look like real cities are actually models. Well now with have someone giving that treatment to video.

I find this quite unexpected and charming. Of all the high-tech wizardry and special effects used in movies like Avatar, something as simple as playing with the lens and the speed of the camera has turned the orthodox cityscape of London into a meditative feast for the eyes.

Enjoy the video

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