Posts Tagged ‘Downtown’

Technology has truly come a long way in short time. In the 1990’s, many people did not know of the internet, and those that did had to deal with the frustration of dial-up. Just a decade ago, smartphones had just made its introduction to the world, revolutionizing information technology by placing the world in your hands. Many other gadgets have surfaced since the smartphone, including many wearables and other useful tools. The way we view electronics has changed greatly over time too. Touch screens started off as resistive, meaning it relied on physical pressure to measure taps and touches. Touch screens later evolved into capacitive, which senses the conductive capacity of an object that touches the screen, such as human skin. In addition to touch screens, 3D and virtual reality has existed for a long time too, but had not made it into the mainstream as much. Times have changed, and you can now possess virtual reality in your hands, which the VRLA Expo 2017 showcased many forms of VR.

The general public used to think of virtual reality as a luxury item, but in today’s economy, anyone can experience VR, and the VRLA Expo 2017 exhibited the many ways that one can experience VR. This all-ages electronics expo took place at the Los Angeles Convention Center’s west hall this past weekend, and contained dozens of vendors all showcasing their entry into the VR market. Within the expo hall, the convention center staff had the lights dimmed the entire time so that attendees can better witness the spectacle of virtual reality. Most of the demos involved a VR headset that you either hold up to your eyes or have them strapped around your eyes so that you get the full immersion of the video clip or game. Most commonly, attendees got to use the HTC Vive (a complete virtual reality headset that includes a viewer and controllers, but no headphones) or other similar VR headset such as the Samsung Gear VR or Oculus Rift. Other VR demos at this expo included mixed reality (MR), full body motion capture, physical/cardio machines (bikes, elliptical, etc), and a 360 dome that simulated perspective distortion, where you lie still in a room surrounded by a round screen, and that screen displayed a video that made you feel like you moved with the video.

The future has arrived, and the future includes virtual reality. We live in a future where we put clocks in our smartphones so that we do not need to wear a watch, yet we now have smartwatches so that we do not have to pull our phones out of our pockets. In this future, we now use a USB cord to charge books and cigarettes. Virtual reality does not have to cost you much – if you have a smartphone (I recommend at least a five inch screen), you can use a Google Cardboard with it, which should only cost a few dollars on third-party sites. If you missed out on the VRLA Expo 2017, fret not, as they normally run their expo twice a year. In the meantime, check out the VRLA Expo on Facebook and Twitter for more info about future expos and all the vendors that participated in this past weekend’s expo.

Ever participate in a flash mob? No, not the kind of flash mob where everyone breaks out in dance. I speak of the infamous pillow fight flash mob. World Pillow Fight Day takes place every year on the first Saturday of April, where communities around the world gather to unleash a fray of feather-fueled frenzy on unsuspecting combatants. Due to the unorganized nature of a flash mob, no one can control what occurs, so anyone can join in, yet anything goes. One will encounter solo pillow fighters, pillow fighter parties, and specific pillow fighter “targets” dressed in costume. Throughout the melee, someone may call out a target, prompting anyone nearby to all focus on that particular pillow fighter. While many people brought cotton pillows, the few that brought feather pillows made the pillow fight much more interesting. Of course, this also caused some breathing issues as the air filled with dust and feathers. Regardless, everyone had a great time, and despite the location, the event did not see any troublemakers.

Artisanal LA returns for its semiannual show this weekend to its new home at the California Market Center in Downtown Los Angeles. Featuring the latest and greatest of artisan food and drinks in Southern California, this designer edibles fair brings together the latest trends in food, drinks, fashion, accessories, and more. Hundreds of artists, chefs, bakers, designers, and more from across the world showcase their goods and sell their wonderful products to all the attendees. The floor features aisles after aisles full of vendors in each little space, all vying for attendees to try their goods, and hopefully generate a fan out of them. Due to the enclosed space with no industrial ventilation, most of the food arrived premade, or as cold/room temperature goods. From refreshing soft drinks to chocolates to ice cream to grass-fed beef to cakes and beyond, Artisanal LA truly exhibits the best of local Southern Californian flavor.

Find the latest trends in food, drinks, fashion, accessories, and more at this designer fair this weekend. See dozens of artists, chefs, bakers, designers, and more from across the world showcasing their goods and selling their wonderful products. Admission to this all-ages event costs $10 presale or $15 at the door. Parking at the venue costs $6 per vehicle, but visitors can either search for other parking lots or street meters, or take public transportation to save on commute costs. Words cannot fully depict all that transpires at Artisanal LA, so take an abridged tour through last year’s Artisanal LA here:

Ever participate in a flash mob? No, not the kind of flash mob where everyone breaks out in dance. I speak of the infamous pillow fight flash mob. World Pillow Fight Day takes place every year on the first Saturday of April, where communities around the world gather to unleash a fray feather-fueled frenzy on unsuspecting combatants. Due to the unorganized nature of a flash mob, no one can control what occurs, so anyone can join in, yet anything goes. One will encounter solo pillow fighters, pillow fighter parties, and specific pillow fighter “targets” dressed in costume. Throughout the melee, someone will call out a target, prompting anyone nearby to all focus on that particular pillow fighter. For best results, participants should use feather pillows instead of cotton or memory foam pillows, and make a few perforations on the pillows to allow the feathers to fly. Participants should maintain their health by wearing goggles, bandanas, masks, or anything else to help preserve vision and breathing.

Note that most locations take place in dense areas, so prepare to pay for parking. Check the website for confirmed locations throughout the world. As far as Southern California goes, World Pillow Fight Day returns to Los Angeles after taking many years off, with the last one taking place in 2011.

When it comes to adding flavor to foods, nothing can boss the sauce. At its base, sauce contains sugar, salt, pepper, or any combination of those plus additional ingredients. Some foods contain flavor within itself, such as meats that have seasonings and herbs that help bring out the meat’s natural flavor. Most of the time, people add sauces or condiments to their foods to add flavor. For the most part, sauces bring a sweet component to the table, such as ketchup, barbecue sauce, steak sauce, or teriyaki sauce. Many other sauces can add flavor components from sour to salty to spicy and more. However, when it comes to enhancing the flavors of the original dish, nothing can beat hot sauce. The capsaicin in hot sauces helps to open up our taste buds, allowing us to detect and absorb more flavors. For those that cannot take the heat, just a little bit helps to greatly enhance the flavor of the dish, something you can do at Burger Parlor as of this week.

An Orange County staple, Burger Parlor brings the right balance of familiar foods with intuitive innovation. Now approaching their fifth year in business, Burger Parlor has the right business formula to keep customers coming back, as well as attract new customers to crave more. Their standard menu has not changed that much since they got started – the menu you see today contains items that has lived on that menu for years. However, that does not mean that Burger Parlor does not innovate – in fact, Burger Parlor appears to always have limited-time specials, such as their Gringo Bandito Burger available starting this week. Named for its signature ingredient, this burger comes with Gringo Bandito aioli, roasted Anaheim chiles, crushed avocado, a crisp tostada chip, a fried egg, and Gringo Bandito crema, topped with more Gringo Bandito sauce. Despite all the hot sauce getting thrown around, the overall burger does not come off as a spice attack. It balances quite nicely between the aioli, crema, avocado, and egg.

You can snag this burger at both Burger Parlor locations in Fullerton and Orange for a limited time. Head on over and taste this bit of heat to spice up your day. Follow Burger Parlor on Facebook and Twitter for more details about the Gringo Bandito Burger.

The Hermosa Beach St. Patrick’s Day Parade returned to Downtown Hermosa Beach for its 32nd year running this past Saturday afternoon. Covering the streets of Downtown Hermosa Beach, the Hermosa Beach Chamber of Commerce gives back to the community every year with this local treat that celebrates the local politicians and businesses. Featuring a plethora of local businesses, organizations, and politicians, every participating group represented one part out of the South Bay’s many diverse aspects. From marching bands to local dance crews to community service organizations to servicemen, if it had roots in the South Bay, it had a spot in this parade.

The first Taste of Downtown Long Beach of 2017 will occur this week on Wednesday and Thursday nights. Free to attend for all ages, numerous businesses in Downtown Long Beach will set up booths in the East Village Arts District to serve food & drinks to guests who purchase food tickets. Guests can purchase 12 tickets for $10 online, or one ticket for $1 each at the event. The restaurants that serve at this event range from the many restaurants around the East Village to those along Pine Avenue to the handful of restaurants in Shoreline Village and Rainbow Harbor. In addition to all the food, local bands will play music throughout the night, and local artists and vendors set up to sell their merchandise and other work.

If you cannot make it out to this food fest, the Downtown Long Beach Association will host the taste once again in early June and late August. For a simple method to sample what Downtown Long Beach has to offer, you do not want to miss the next taste or two.