I just caught a new commercial forPedigree dog food on the Food Channel (watching a little late night Iron Chef America) and recognized the voice of an actor that I don't think has previously done voiceovers. David Duchovny, former star of the X-Files tv show (and star of a number of mediocre movies), is the voice behind the new Pedigree ad campaign. Kudos to Pedigree for having the videos of all their new commercials available on their website (any of the NEW commercials feature Mr. Duchovny's voice). Not only that, they're featuring these commercials in the bottom-left corner of their homepage as part of The Pedigree Adoption Drive to help dogs in shelters find homes.
On my way into work this morning I saw Arthur J. Nascarella who plays Carlo Gervasi from the Sopranos on my NJ Transit bus (#158) on my way into NYC. I didn't realize it was him until he got off right in front of me at the Port Authority bus terminal. I tried to get a photo with my Treo without bothering him so the best I got was the back of his head on the elevator down to the main level:
Not very convincing, I know. But I was sure it was him when we got to the bottom of the escalator and three NYPD officers were standing there and one of them pointed at him and yelled, "Hey, it's the new construction guy!" This was in reference to the promotion Tony gave Carlo replacing Vito in all construction business in last week's episode. He pointed right back and smiled but kept on walking.
On Tuesday USA TODAY ran a feature on the top 100 US hotel restaurants based on data provided to them by Zagat Survey (my employer). Given that we already make our content available for many mobile devices I thought we'd experiment and take this content and create a mini-guide for iPods using the iPod Notes feature.
This Zagat mini-guide for iPod contains the address, phone number and ratings and reviews of the top 100 U.S. hotel restaurants and can be downloaded for free here: http://www.zagat.com/promo.aspx?PN=22
Where California Burrito lay closed and abandoned for years a Jamba Juice has now opened in its place on the main level in the south terminal of the NY/NJ Port Authority Bus Terminal. Now commuters don't have to settle for the sad excuse for smoothies at Munchy's Gourmet on the second level. For me, I now have a Jamba Juice across the street from my home, across the street from my office and on the way from my home to my office. Now if only I could email or SMS my order from the bus so it was ready when I got there and could just pick it up and go ....
On Monday the New York Times launched a redesign of www.nytimes.com that included numerous significant structural, design and content changes. Overall I think the changes are positive (save for the bug below) and the site looks very good. Of most interest to me from a web design and product management perspective is their decision to design the site for computer monitors with a resolution of 1024x768. Many sites today are still designed for monitors with a resolution setting of 800x600. The advantage to designing for the larger resolution setting is being able to fit more content on the page and have more content display above the fold. Most new computers are set to 1024x768 by default but since users with 800x600 would be unable to see part of a page designed for the larger resolution some sites have been hesitant to make the switch. We've been considering desiging zagat.com for 1024x768 and it's comforting to see a major site like NYTimes.com take the plunge.