Watches, Stories, & Gear: Protoplanets, Seth Rogen, and Expensive JPGs

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“Watches, Stories, and Gear” is a roundup of our favorite content, watch or otherwise, from around the internet. Here, we support other creators, explore interesting content that inspires us, and put a spotlight on causes we believe in. Oh, and any gear we happen to be digging on this week. We love gear.

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This installment of “Watches, Stories, and Gear” is brought to you by the Windup Watch Shop.

Seth Rogen Has Had A Productive Quarantine

Credit: Ryan Lowry for the NYT

Somehow, it’s not surprising that Seth Rogen has adjusted fairly well to isolating at home during the pandemic. As we learn in this profile from the New York Times, he’s quite comfortable not leaving his home, taking meetings over Zoom, and watching TV on his couch with his dog by his side (he recently joked that “I’ve been isolating since 2009” on a late night talk show appearance). What might be surprising to many, however, is Rogen’s deepening interest in ceramics, which he has been featuring on Instagram over the last year, and has started to sell through Houseplant, his cannabis company that he started in 2019. Rogen has never seemed like a typical movie star, and in this wide ranging interview his regular guy persona is on full display, and it’s definitely worth a read.

JPG File Sells For Nearly $70M

“Everydays — The First 5000 Days” via Christie’s

In a result that makes Paul Newman’s Daytona look like a screaming bargain, Christie’s sold a JPG file for 69 million dollars this week. The JPG in question is a work of digital art by Mike Winkelmann, otherwise known as Beeple, a well known artist who created “Everydays — The First 5000 Days” as a collage of images he’s been posting since 2007. This is a record setting result for a work of art that exists in a digital format only, and is likely to put the acronym NFT on the tips of even more tongues as the auction is scrutinized. An NFT, or “nonfungible token,” is essentially the JPG’s digital fingerprint, and ensures that its originality. The NFT market is moving extremely fast, as are the cryptocurrencies that back it, and it represents both something genuinely exciting and new in the art market, and is simultaneously head scratching, to put it mildly. Much more via the New York Times right here.

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The Moon’s Hidden Tail

Credit: Mariana Suarez/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images

In news that will delight space and astronomy nerds, it was reported this week that according to new research, the moon has a comet-like tail, and every month it shoots a beam around earth. This “moonbeam” is actually a result of photons from the sun colliding with sodium atoms that rise from the moon’s surface into its orbit. This collision pushes the atoms away from the moon, sending them on a course for earth once per month. This article in the New York Times features a handy visualization of what’s happening in space, making it fairly easy to understand. While the practical impact of this discovery on our way of life is sure to be minimal, it’s solid evidence that there is a never ending supply of cool things to constantly discover about our own solar system.

Piece Of Proto Planet Discovered In Sahara Desert

EC 202 Meteorite. Credit: Maine Mineral and Gem Museum/Darryl Pitt

A rare meteorite discovered in Algeria’s Erg Chech dune sea in 2020 is among the oldest pieces of the early solar system ever discovered on Earth. With a composition of 58 percent silicon dioxide, the rock seems to have originated from a planet with a crust of andesite rock, as opposed to Basalt as we find in volcanic regions of earth. The find could provide valuable insights to early periods of our solar system’s history, having been dated to 4.566 billion years old according to an analysis of the magnesium and aluminum isotopes in the rock, making it the oldest known piece of igneous crust ever found. Read more about the find from this Vice article, along with what scientists hope to learn from it.

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Exploring the Many Faces Of The Apple Watch

via arun.is

You may have noticed some familiar dial designs in Apple’s latest WatchOS, revealed along with the Series 6 released last year. The designs draw heavily from historic designs well known around these parts, blending traditional dial iconography with the digital functionality offered by the smart watch. How it balances these things so effortlessly is what makes Apple, well, Apple. Designer and engineer Arun Venkatesan provides a beautiful deep dive into designs in his blog right here, and while I’ll always contend that it’s ‘dial’ rather than ‘face’, the breakdown is a great primer on the source material used by Apple.

eBay Finds: Vintage Hamilton Masterpiece 

Credit: holbensfinewatches

Beauty, bling, style and history! Super sweet vintage 1966 Hamilton Masterpiece in a 14k yellow gold case with a nice retirement engraving on the back. Some folks may not like personal engravings, but I find them to add a nice touch, helping to tell the watch’s story. This piece is in superb condition, case appears unpolished, the dial is excellent, and it still has the original signed crown. Seller states the watch was serviced, and this seller has been selling watches on eBay for a long time with stellar feedback, I would take them at their word. Great solid 14k gold piece that will go swimmingly with a three-piece suit in the boardroom a la Mad Men, or chilling at the bar with your buddies (post Covid of course…).

View auction here.

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