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Volume 370

Are you paying attention? You better be… This week’s coolsh*t has some Orwellian ocular-tracking to make sure you don’t lose concentration. We’ve also got a clash between the canines and the K9s, violent environmentalism, and, to make things a little less aggressive, a fast food x fast fashion match made in heaven.

The Dog's Pollocks.

Is there anything dogs can’t do? Well, yes – loads of things, obviously. But you can erase art from that list, along with fundraising, because some paintings by Banksy the dog have just raised £500 for the Bristol Animal Rescue Centre. Although, considering NFT apes are selling for ungodly sums in the millions, £500 doesn’t seem like all that much. But he’s a dog, for God’s sake! Palindrome intended. What did you expect from him? And, in fairness, like Van Gogh, Banksy the dog clearly isn’t appreciated in his own time, as the paintings are actually pretty impressive to look at – and not just because you know they were done with paws. You people wouldn’t know good art if it slapped you in the face or shat on your lawn.

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Are You Still Watching?

MoviePass 2.0 is a new service that wants to track your eyes to make sure you’re watching ads. Take that, Adblocker. And as dystopian as that sounds, advertisers will be licking their lips at the prospect. Wouldn’t it be wonderful if we could force people to pay attention to our work? Oh, pish posh – moral implications, shmoral shmimplications. There is at least something in it for the person strapped in the chair though, as you can earn some cash by watching the ads. And when I say cash, I mean movie vouchers, which are equally as effective for going to see the new Spider-Man but less so for bribing your way out of a Thai jail. Now I think about it, I’m not sure receiving an incentive in the form of vouchers to have your eye-balls tracked makes the situation much less terrifying. But what do I know? The film-watching public will decide, as the service is due to launch in the summer. And then next year the plan is to roll out technology that’ll give people a (probably) non-fatal electric shock every time they avert their eyes from the screen to eat some popcorn. Patent pending.

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Over Land and Sea.

Considering the Tesla Cybertruck hasn’t yet come out or even been given an official release date, there certainly are an awful lot of spin-off models being teased. Introducing the Cybercat, a new mod that will turn your imaginary Cybertruck into an imaginary battery-powered catamaran. American materials scientist Anthony Diamond developed the Cybercat accessory, which will see the truck outrigged with a pair of attachable pontoons and outboard motors. Apparently, it takes less time to assemble than it would take to launch a boat and putting it all together and taking it apart is a one-person job. Which is fortunate, as if you’re driving/captaining a Cybercat, I would assume you’re almost definitely on your own. The design is still awaiting official approval, but you can already sign up to reserve one for if and when it gets made. And if and when the Cybertruck ever actually gets made. Lots of ifs, lots of whens, but this could prove to be the ultimate vehicle for the apocalypse. Zombies can’t swim, right? Although that’ll probably come around before one of these ever hits the road/sea.

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(Not So) Furry Friends.

What a world we live in. The original source of this story isn’t even about the robot dog that probably caught your eye, but rather the new sling you can buy to carry it around in. Hang on, hang on, let’s rewind a second… Robot dogs? You can’t just gloss over that like we’re the idiots for not knowing they were about. These little fellas are called Aibos. They’re made by Sony and are described as ‘puppy bots’ (again, just making stuff up as if it’s nothing). They have a dynamic range of movements and are incredibly responsive to their surroundings. So responsive, indeed, that they’re capable of developing unique personalities to match what they have learned about their owner’s wants and needs. Great, but can they paint? Real dogs 1, creepy robot dogs 0. I bet they probably can paint, though. Scrap that, VAR says no goal. All square again. Anyway, the Aibos of the world apparently required a harness to be carried around in, so, Lucky Industries, who are apparently the GOATs of baby-carriers, have manufactured these little numbers. Thank heavens, wouldn’t want your robot dog to get tired from all that walking around. Am I in a cheese dream?

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Sausage Rollnecks.

Speaking of cheese dreams… Actually, this is more of a sausage, bean and cheese dream. Sometimes a collaboration just makes sense. So much sense that the only question being asked is why such a glorious meeting of minds didn’t take place sooner. Greggs x Primark. Fast Food and fast fashion. Cornish pasties and bargain panties. Ham baguettes and handbags. Need we say any more? The two had been leaving Easter eggs to hint at the upcoming collaboration by leaving sausage rolls dotted around Primark stores over the last week or so, but most people just assumed that somebody had abandoned their steak bake on a display shelf while trying on some swimwear. That in itself is a testament to how well the two brands go together. The pair have revealed that Primark are set to release a limited-edition, 11-piece clothing collection later this month, while the sausage roll merchants will open a 130-seater café in Primark’s flagship Birmingham store. That’s a place to add to the bucket list. Taj Mahal, Great Barrier Reef, big Gregg’s in Primark’s flagship store. What a time to be alive.

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It felt necessary to include at least one Super Bowl ad this week. I don’t know a great deal about American Football – or Armoured Rugby, as I call it – but I have it on good authority that a fair few people tune in to watch the Super Bowl. My understanding is that it hoovers up the die-hard fans, the casuals, as well as the people who just want to sit around eating chicken wings for the day. The result of which: a sh*tload of eyeballs on the ads – or commercials, if you will. Much like the heralded half-time show, a lot of this year’s adverts were dripping in nostalgia, including a Verizon ad featuring Jim Carrey taking a break from painting and being all spiritually awakened ‘n that to reprise his role as The Cable Guy. That wasn’t the one we’ve decided to focus on though, opting instead for this effort from Hellman’s. Now, I don’t know who this bloke is, but the fact that there’s a football player called ‘Mayo’ really fell into the brand’s laps. Ok, so they’ve got the star, but what should they get him to do? F*ck up people who are wasting food, obviously – whether that be a woman on crutches, a grandmother, or even man of the moment, Pete Davidson. Kanye will have enjoyed that one.

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