is a blog about design, technology and culture written by Khoi Vinh, and has been more or less continuously published since December 2000 in New York City. Khoi is currently Principal Designer at Adobe, Design Chair at Wildcard and co-founder of Kidpost. Previously, Khoi was co-founder and CEO of Mixel (acquired by Etsy, Inc.), Design Director of The New York Times Online, and co-founder of the design studio Behavior, LLC. He is the author of “Ordering Disorder: Grid Principles for Web Design,” and was named one of Fast Company’s “fifty most influential designers in America.” Khoi lives in Crown Heights, Brooklyn with his wife and three children. Refer to the advertising and sponsorship page for inquiries.+
This public service announcement from Volkswagen was run in a Hong Kong movie theater. It’s extremely clever in using two media channels to re-create the perils of texting while driving.
It reminds me a bit of the famous reactions to “The Great Train Robbery” in 1903, when audiences flinched at a gunman shooting directly at the camera and ducked at the sight of an oncoming locomotive rushing in their direction. Both that movie and this PSA were using novel techniques to seemingly reach out from the screen into the theater itself.
Just as it’s quotidian to look down the barrel of a gun or directly at a rushing train in movies today, in the near future it will be commonplace to have media experiences that cross multiple channels like this PSA does. The fact that smart phones are nearing ubiquity—to say nothing of whatever new device types lay in our future—is too tempting a change not to entice technologically curious filmmakers, or auteurs from any background, really. To me, this is much more interesting than 3D.+