fodder for the masses

Tuesday, March 28, 2006

barcodes - new arrows too

time for a new adventure
Follow me here. There's a new place you need to investigate. Assuming you managed to visit the previous one, the high security mental hospital so widely covered in these posts.

If you didn't manage to do that, or have no idea what I'm talking about, best you travel back a few posts and see if you can pick up on what's been happening.

Now we're releasing a load of barcode business cards into the wild - an invitation to participate in an urbex experience with a bit of spook value. A combination of yellowarrow SMS information, Google map locations, and barcodes. I'm guessing that your reading this means you 'aint going to get anywhere near one of the cards we released, decide to increase the pain factor and add a barcode setup to this post. Only difficulty is - you're going to need to be able to handle a few different technologies. Dataglyphs, and ShotCodes. Think you can? Follow the directions below:

First thing you do is click on the image below which will give you another page with the original sized image. Save that to your desktop. Go to this place here: click 'decode' and you will be facing a page that will want to upload an image - in this case the image you just saved from here. (PARC is a subsidiary of Xerox Corporation, we thank them for their dataglyphs)

You will see, when the decode is done, that you have enough information, assuming you're in the Southern Hemisphere, to get you to the front door of the place and slightly beyond.

and, a variation
Want to try it another way? Have a camera phone? Go here - see if you have the right phone before you line the camera up on this:

If you have the right phone you're in business. It will instantly connect you to a dedicated page on the main Zoetrope site which will give you the details of the urbex destination.

Do it - get out, get about, get loose. Do something.

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Thursday, March 23, 2006

the things we do..

cyclones, bikes, laminate
The weather has not been helpful. We are just getting the edge of the whooper that went through North Queensland earlier in the week. We only get the rain and the wind, no houses falling down, no people being blown away, just enough to keep me inside. We still have another one coming down the coast but I expect to survive that too - probably more indoor stuff.

Indoors is a dangerous place for me. Indoors and too much time on my hands is a danger to everyone.

behold the laminate
The new plan 'a'. Bold, daring, stupid. In any particular order. Yesterday it was all about laminated business cards bearing simply an email address - pointing back to a pile of grafedia images. ie:,, and on they go - all nicely enclosed in laminate, a thought to get me around the rain.

Last night; everywhere, sticking empty arrows pointing to one of the strategically placed cards. Bus stops, shelters, phone booths, pay and display robots, you name it they all got the treatment - plain stickers as well. All with a single, but varying, grafedia address on them.

Today; plan 'b' - still nothing better to do - weather still hassling, still waiting for me to leave the house so that it can rain. An extension of the business card thing - veering off badly - hung up on barcodes, as I am, decided to incorporate them as well.

The final solution:

A triumph of barcode madness. The big thing is they actually do say something. The 'instructions' one contains the Google coordinates to another, older asylum that we have been looking at. They manage to get the barcodes read, get to the coordinates, they will be faced with a yellowarrow that will move them through the building, eventually ending up at a 'seclusion' cell that truly does reek of another time. If they get it right they actually get a yellowarrow DVD all of their own. Yummy.

These cards are going to be deployed over the weekend and next week, accompanied by the yellowarrows necessary to 'drag 'em in'. Should be interesting to see if anyone actually 'gets it' because they haven't got anything else yet.

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Monday, March 06, 2006

ever notice some days..

some days just don't come together
Today is one of those days.

Uneasy. Something missing.

Swimming? No, did that yesterday, still feeling it a bit, 2.5 klms on the first back after two weeks laying about. Legs sore, shoulders, headache, standard stuff.

Buggy? The bay is showing patches of rain on the radar, wind is in the right place, sitting neatly to the North. Haven't had the buggy out for two weeks either. Forecast afternoon storms. Do not want to drive all the way over there to find a storm brewing. Kites do not go well with approaching storms.

Biking? Just don't feel like it today. It's a necessity though. Ordered up by doctor - lose weight, ride bike, do it now. I should be out there, clad in spandex, scaring the locals.

Site work - Nah, don't want to get that serious, hell, that's for one of those days when my brain is buzzing and lightning is flashing off my frontal lobes.

Too lazy, too tired, too something. Maybe just messing with the day will be good enough. Driven, all the god damn time, to produce something. Doesn't seem to matter what it is, just so long as something is there at the end of the day to show for it. We don't have non productive days around here.

Maybe I prison spooked. I was out at the abandoned prison again yesterday, this time for a definitive walkthrough to finally get the layout straight in my head. Went out after work on Sunday, a grey foreboding sort of day, only to find two couples hanging about the place, intent on exploring, but scared to go too far. Destroyed the feeling of the place, but I took them through, showed them.

The place has been used as a venue for some armed response group since I was last there - spent mini 9mm cases everywhere, they had been using high tech paint pellet guns, been using some big charges on a lot of the doors as well. Powder burns, scorch marks, broken doors testimony to someone having some explosive fun.

Visitors had a good time - you have to wonder why they would fall in behind a complete stranger in an obviously weird establishment so far from the main road. Finally one of the woman asked why I was actually there. I would have been asking that at sentence one. Took them down to the old redbrick places as well, give 'em something to tell their friends about.

Nett result: nothing done in the way of getting to know the place, all those people, all that noise. I was looking for complete silence, getting better acquainted.

So, yesterday went out there and did it all again. Solo. No onlookers. No tourists. Just me, and whatever they left in the place. Got a better grip on the layout, a maze like setup that will guarantee anyone getting lose does not get too far from their ward. Had me going in circles for a time. Finally got some semblance of function out of it.

Good looking little garden courts inside - open to the sunlight, not something a prisoner would be able to escape from care of the razor wired drums at the top, but nicely done, looking good now in luxurious overgrowth, fending for themselves quite well.

Found a real life rubber room. Seems like what they do is spray the stuff all over the walls ceiling and floors. Like super stiff foam. Hell of a find. Couldn't get in - someone had decided to leave the thing locked. Nicely titled 'seclusion', secluded alright. Managed a pseudo panoramic by holding the camera though a viewing slit. Might as well keep a record of it.

That done, recorded, paced out and investigated, I managed to leave the place and come home. To wake up this morning with a distinct lack of interest. Too long in the rubber room?

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