Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Rube Goldberg Lives

Actually, he doesn't. But his Spirit Lives On.

He would have loved this video.


Reuben Garret L. Goldberg (July 4, 1883 - December 7, 1970) was an American cartoonist. He earned lasting fame for his Rube Goldberg machines (complex devices that perform simple tasks in indirect and convoluted ways.)

Goldberg went to Lowell High School in San Francisco in 1900 and earned a degree in engineering from the University of California, Berkeley in 1904. After college, Goldberg was hired by the city of San Francisco as an engineer. However, his fondness for drawing cartoons prevailed, and after just a few months he quit the city job for a job with the San Francisco Chronicle as a sports cartoonist. The following year, he took a job with the San Francisco Bulletin, where he remained until he moved to New York City in 1907.

He drew cartoons for several newspapers, including the New York Evening Journal and the New York Evening Mail. His work entered syndication in 1915, beginning his nationwide popularity. A prolific artist, Goldberg produced several cartoon series simultaneously; titles included Mike and Ike, Boob McNutt, Foolish Questions, Lala Palooza, and The Weekly Meeting of the Tuesday Women's Club.

While these series were quite popular, the one leading to his lasting fame involved a character named Professor Lucifer Gorgonzola Butts. In this series, Goldberg would draw labeled schematics of comical "inventions" which would later bear his name. In 1995, "Rube Goldberg's Inventions", depicting Professor Butts' Self-Operating Napkin, was one of 20 strips included in the Comic Strip Classics series of commemorative U.S. postage stamps. He was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for his political cartooning in 1948.
This... massively expensive commercial which took something like 600+ takes...

Is the epitome of a Rube Goldberg Machine. Enjoy.


YouTube - World's Costliest Ad... after 606 takes

When the ad was pitched to senior executives, they signed off on it immediately without any hesitation - including the costs. There are six, and only six, hand-made Honda Accords in the world. To the horror of Honda engineers, the filmmakers disassembled two of them to make this film.

There are no computer graphics or digital tricks in the film. Everything you see really happened in real time, exactly as you see it. The film took 606 takes. On the first 605 takes, something, usually very minor, didn't work. They would then have to set the whole thing up again.

The crew spent weeks shooting night and day. By the time it was over, they were ready to change professions. The film cost six million dollars and took three months to complete including full engineering of the sequence.

In addition, it is two minutes long so every time Honda airs the film on British television, they're shelling out enough dough to keep any one of us in clover for a lifetime. However, it is fast becoming the most downloaded advertisement in Internet history. Honda executives figure the ad will soon pay for itself simply in "free viewings" (Honda isn't paying a dime to have you watch this commercial!).

Everything you see in the film (aside from the walls, floor, ramp and complete Honda Accord) is parts from those two cars. The voice-over is Garrison Keillor. When the ad was shown to Honda executives, they liked it and commented on how amazing computer graphics have gotten.

They fell off their chairs when they found out it was for real... oh no J. And how about those funky windshield wipers...?? On the new Accords, the windshield wipers have water sensors and are designed to start doing their thing automatically... as soon as they become wet. It looks a bit weird in the commercial.

At cost of $6.2 million for 90-sec commercial, this is world's costliest ad and hands down winner in the world of ads.