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Creatives of the Week – Aaron Koblin & Chris Milk

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19 May 2011
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Yes, we know, them again. But the creative collaboration between film maker Chris Milk and the Google creative technologist Aaron Koblin has spawned another highly ambitious ‘music video’ project, this time together with those Swedish geniuses of North Kingdom. It’s called Ro.me & it’s for a track of the Danger Mouse album of the same name.

Ro.me is an interactive video where you can steer the camera, effectively creating a different experience for every ‘viewer’, with lots of Easter Eggs and different routes to explore. As they say: it’s a music video for the browser.

Once again, it was Google who made things possible (read: stumped up the cash); to show off Chrome’s WebGL capabilities of rendering graphics. Rather than traditional frame-by-frame animation, big parts of the video are effectively created by code that gets rendered in real-time depending on what you’re doing, very much like a video game.

Which sounds impressive; and it is. But admittedly, it’s not as instant a hit as Koblin & Milk’s Wilderness Project for Arcade Fire. At times it feels like a technical feat, more than an outright goosebump piece.

Still, these guys are special. One point in case: as part of the experience they built a tool to create your own characters for inclusion in the ‘environment’. At the time of writing, there were already almost 1,000 made.

The technology page is also quite impressive. Not only is there a neat video explaining the basics of the technology behind Ro.Me, there’s also a model gallery and WebGL demos. And ‘obviously’ they made some of the source code available for developers, so people can learn how to use WebGL.

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