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South by Southwest

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Original author: 
Germain Lussier

Short Term 12

At this year’s South by Southwest Film Festival, one film took home both top prizes awarded by the Grand Jury and Audience. That film, Destin Daniel Cretton‘s Short Term 12, opens August 23. Now you can get a look at the movie, as the first trailer has just been released.

Short Term 12 stars Brie Larson and John Gallagher Jr. as a young couple who have to balance their own personal issues with the problems of the displaced kids they oversee at a foster home. It’s a glorious, special film I gave a perfect 10/10 score. (My first.) Check out the trailer below and see what all the fuss is about.

Thanks to Yahoo Movies for the trailer, in which I’m quoted. It’s an honor.

I can’t stress enough how good Short Term 12 is. Cretton does a masterful job of balancing nearly every emotion imaginable in a beautiful story that’s uplifting, heartbreaking and filled with the kind of performances they study in film school. However, if you don’t believe me, the film’s official Twitter has been doing a great job of linking all kinds of reactions to the film’s festival run, where standing ovations and tears are the norm.

What did you think of the trailer?

Short Term 12 is told through the eyes of Grace (Brie Larson), a twenty-something supervisor at a facility for at-risk teenagers. Passionate and tough, Grace is a formidable caretaker of the kids in her charge – and in love with her long-term boyfriend and co-worker, Mason (John Gallagher Jr.). But Grace’s own difficult past – and the surprising future that suddenly presents itself – throw her into unforeseen confusion, made all the sharper with the arrival of a new intake at the facility: a gifted but troubled teenage girl with whom Grace has a charged connection. While the subject matter is complex, this lovingly realized film finds truth – and humor – in unexpected places. The second feature from Destin Daniel Cretton (I Am Not a Hipster), Short Term 12 also stars Kaitlyn Dever (Bad Teacher), Rami Malek (The Master), and Keith Stanfield.

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Original author: 
Germain Lussier

Just Like Being There header

Briefly: You may remember last year’s South by Southwest film festival when I wrote a blog about appearing in a documentary. That documentary, Just Like Being There directed by Scout Shannon, is now available on Netflix Instant. It’s a carefree journey through the world of limited edition gig posters, told through the music of festivals like SXSW and more.

Eventually, it gets to Mondo and the current movie poster craze, where you can my embarrassing contribution, but if you’re bored this weekend and looking for a flick, there are many worse ways you can spend 90 minutes. Here’s the direct link.

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Flipping through the pocket programming guide for South By Southwest 2013 feels a little bit like reading through an entire year of one of those Joke-A-Day or Far Side calendars you had on your desk when you were a kid in one sitting: you are really not supposed to take all of this in in just one day.

Getting Started With Angel Investing
#catvidfest: Is This The End Of Art?
What Can We Learn From The Unabomber?
Extreme GPS: Limits of Security & Precision
Latinos y Mobile: A Silver Bullet?
The Comfy Chair! Are We Sitting Too Much?

Some sound like they are for babies, others sound like they are for EMBA students, most sound like they are for bloggers. And then there was

Female Orgasm: The Regenerative Human Technology

Continue reading…

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kevin systrom instagram

Instagram was acquired by Facebook today for $1 billion in cash and stock.

It only has 13 employees. If all employees had equal shares (they didn't), that'd be $76.9 million per worker.

Meet 11 of the lucky employees and 9 investors behind Instagram.

Two other employees were hired during South by Southwest last month and their information wasn't available for this story.

Kevin Systrom is Instagram's CEO and co-founder

Date joined: June 2010

Role and career history: Kevin Systrom was a product manager at NextStop before co-founding Instagram with Mike Krieger.  Prior to that he was a corporate development associate at Google.

Systrom owned 40% of Instagram when it was acquired.

Mike Krieger is co-founder of Instagram

Date joined: June 2010

Role and career history: "Kevin Systrom and I started Instagram in mid-2010 and both designed and developed the application," he writes on LinkedIn.  Prior to Instagram, Krieger was a user experience designer and engineer at Meebo and a graduate of Stanford University.

Krieger owned 10% of Instagram when it was acquired by Facebook.

Dan Toffey works on Community for Instagram

Date joined: March 2012

Role and career history: Toffey may be Instagram's only non-San Francisco-based employee. Based in Washington D.C., he works on community for Instagram.  Prior to joining Instagram he was web communications manager at Commodity Futures Trading Commission.

See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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Photo: Jim Merithew/

AUSTIN, Texas — If you’re a runner and you can’t extend your hip well behind you on your stride, Jay Dicharry has bad news: You’re never going to be a great runner.

SXSW 2012This doesn’t mean you should hang up your shoes. You can still run, and run well, but not everyone can attain the ideal stride needed to be a truly great runner.

Dicharry is the director of the Speed Performance Clinic and the Motion Analysis Lab Coordinator At The University Of Virginia. In discussing the biomechanics of running here at South by Southwest Interactive he recalled his Louisiana roots to emphasize his point.

“I’m from New Orleans, and there’s great food there,” he said, by way of understatement. “But if you have bad shrimp in a dish, you’re doing to have a bad dish. You can’t make a good meal with bad ingredients. Everyone may not have certain attributes that make ideal form possible.”

Most runners don’t extend their hips, Dicharry said. Tight hips might be genetic, or maybe they occur over time after sitting for long stretches. But as you run, you’ll lose the power that propels you forward if your leg doesn’t extend back behind you far enough on your stride before you bring it forward again.

Along with a lack of hip extension, overstriding is one of the biggest sins. If your foot lands ahead of its center of gravity, your stride is too long. Allowing your posture to break down — specifically, arching your back as you strain to squeeze out those final strides — is a killer as well.

Even elite athletes can fall prey to these pitfalls in form, as Dicharry demonstrated with a tape of the mens’ 800-meter finals at the 2011 NCAA outdoor track and field championships. Virginia’s Robby Andrews started at the back of the pack, then made his move in the final 200 meters. Dicharry paused the tape as the runners came down the stretch and noted how each runner was about to fail.

“Look at their gait,” he said. “This one’s head is bobbing up and down. This one’s arm swing is taking him side to side. That one is arching his back.”

Only Andrews maintained textbook form for the whole race, finishing first in 1:44.71, just .01 off the meet record.

“There’s more to it than just running,” Dicharry said of winning.

One common mistake is thinking that piling on the miles will make you faster. It isn’t true, and the added mileage may exacerbate problems, or cause them to come to the fore. Don’t increase your mileage by more than 10 percent per week, Dicharry advises.

“Optimal running adaptations occur when the training stimulus is in the appropriate window,” said Dicharry, who noted that 82 percent of runners will suffer some form of injury from running too much. Trying to run too far, or not running far enough, will actually impede progress.

Good posture matters, Dicharry said, whether that in achieving good form while running or just getting through everyday life. The alignment of your trunk is important, because that affects your center of mass. Get your shoulders back, just like Mom said, but don’t arch your back. Flexibility, strength, and muscle memory are key to good form.

And don’t let all this dire talk make you think you’re doomed. Regardless of your skills or natural constraints, you can improve your form. Dicharry led the audience through some easy exercises to improve balance and form.

First, stand on one foot for 15 to 30 seconds, then stand on the other. Then repeat the process with your eyes closed. This is something you can do anytime, even while brushing your teeth or cooking dinner.

Second, stand with your shins against the front of a chair. Squat to the floor. Keep your shins and back as close to vertical as possible, engaging the major muscle groups at the back of your legs.

Third, kneel on one knee. Ensure your ankle is directly under your knee. Tilt your pelvis forward until you feel a stretch in the front of your thigh. Don’t arch your back.

Finally, Dicharry said, to become a better runner, make sure your training includes activities that stress stability and balance, like stand-up paddling or longboarding.

“Don’t train for what you know,” he said, quoting surfer Laird Hamilton, “train for what you don’t know.”

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