Chris Richards

marketing | branding | tech | startups


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Responsive Web Video: Here to Stay

In case you haven’t noticed, responsive video has become the new web standard for visuals.

Everywhere I look now, I’m seeing creative people putting responsive HTML 5 video to good use, and I don’t see it going anywhere soon. Many sites are incorporating it as an engaging part of the “landing experience” for users, though others are incorporating video with more subtlety. What excites me most is the seeming ease with which developers can now include engaging video. With the right technology in place, HTML video is almost as easy as uploading still images.

LPMG COMPANIES

Most recently, I was excited to work with local Philadelphia videographer Cory J. Popp to create a unique piece of content for LPMG Companies. With web design in place, Cory brought the site to life with an amazing set of clips demonstrating the amazing work LPMG has done to transform, revitalize, and invigorate South Philadelphia with its focused approach to real estate development. To me, video makes this site 10x more exciting than a static header ever could. Likewise, companies like O3 World have integrated video so heavily throughout their site, the whole thing seems alive.

Though I’m not technically a developer or designer, I can’t help but feel excited for the future of the web as I see websites evolving into things that are so much more than static code.


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Chromecast: A Modern Media Consumer’s Dream

A while back when Google’s Chromecast was announced, I didn’t immediately understand it’s purpose. Fast forward to now, and I couldn’t more highly recommend any gadget for the price. Should you buy one too? Without hesitation.

Chromecast HDMI dongle

In case you haven’t noticed, TV these days is terrible. Even with hundreds of cable channels, there’s rarely anything on worth watching when you want to watch. With Chromecast, I’ve exponentially increased my viewing options, and the reality has only just sunken in. Things like full National Geographic documentaries are now at my fingertips, ready to cast right onto the TV in full HD. With so much content on YouTube, this $35 device literally opened up a new world of watching, and I find myself using it more and more.

It may seem silly and lazy, but the way this little “dongle” immediately turns on – it automatically switches to its  input as soon as you tell it to cast a video – just totally improves the experience of online video watching. And it’s amazing how much more enjoyable watching something on the TV is compared to the confines of a small laptop of phone screen.

Chromecasting National Geographic in HD for Free!

Better yet, it makes the experiencing of finding a video or something to watch a more social experience. The way someone else can grab control and “cast” their own content up onto the screen, makes searching for/finding videos an activity in its own right.

Does the device still have some flaws? Of course, the full-screen tab casting could be greatly improved, but so far the app experience (YouTube and Netflix) has been nearly flawless. But like the Chromebook, I can’t wait to see how this gadget gets updated. With time, it’s bound to become an even more useful component in the modern media consumer’s arsenal.


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Making Old Gadgets Feel Worth Something

Ebay My GadgetsFor those that are into technology, you already know that once new tech comes into your life, it becomes hard to keep your older gadgets feeling worthwhile. But, I’m one of those types of people that hangs on to my tech, even past its prime. With eBay’s My Gadgets, I am very glad to see that clinging to all that tech over the years might actually pay off.

comparing value between my gadgets

As you can see above, from the brief inventory I took of the gadgets immediately around me, I’m actually surrounded by quite a few valuable pieces! The cool thing that My Gadgets does is to rank your technology according to the average prices eBay users are getting by selling on the site. It feels like a mix of magic and the feeling of walking into a pawn shop, waiting for your items to be judged by the shop keeper.

Notice anything funny about my gadgets I’ve started to list? That old Nintendo 64 is actually worth more than a 5th generation iPod! Adding gadgets to the list just to see their relative value is pretty addictive, and it kind of made me wish I had kept some of the other things (like laptops, cell phones, etc.) that I’ve given or thrown away over the years.

Knowing that there’s a chance of winning the ultimate gadget collection by adding more gadgets to the list, I’ve found myself imagining life with a brand new collection of technology.


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The PlayStation 3 – Part of the Ultimate Gadget Collection

Ah, PlayStation 3, my trusty friend. You’ve been with me through thick and thin, shared joys and sorrows, ups and down, taken a bullet for me, even saved my life! Ok, I’m definitely exaggerating. But, when I stop and think about it, I realize my PlayStation 3 has been one of the most rock solid gadgets I’ve ever owned. In fact, you could call it an ultimate gadget.

PS3 Ultimate Gadget Collection Contest eBay

Seriously, when I first bought the PlayStation 3 I knew I was getting something special. Having come away from many great years with the PlayStation 2, I was already expecting an amazing and free online experience with the PS3. But, I was also chomping at the bit to get my first Blu-ray experience. The PS3 was the gadget that brought me up to speed with a new wave of technology: High definition 1080p resolution, Blue Tooth, HDMI, Blu-ray movies, and digital streaming. And four years after buying it, the PS3’s features still haven’t disappointed me. It has rarely left me asking for more. It’s the cornerstone of my living room experience, and I don’t see anything replacing it any time soon.

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