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Sonos' Brilliant New Logo Appears to Vibrate When You Scroll Thanks to an Optical Illusion Lovely work by Bruce Mau Design

It's not easy to capture the idea of sound through visuals. But Sonos has done so quite brilliantly with its new logo, which appears to pulsate when a user scrolls up or down—thanks to an optical illusion with the radiating lines.

Bruce Mau Design in Toronto designed the mark around the idea of amplification—thus, the radiating lines. But the designers only realized halfway through the process that the lines looked like they were emitting sound waves when the user scrolled up or down. Indeed, they say it was a "happy accident," and once they noticed it, they worked to refine it.

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January 26, 2015, 10:43 AM EST

Katie Couric, Bryant Gumbel Revisit Hilariously Clueless 1994 Today Clip in BMW's Super Bowl Ad What is that @ symbol, anyway?

The year was 1994. Ace of Base saw "The Sign." O.J. Simpson's white Bronco sped down the freeway. And of course, this thing called the Internet was a tiny baby. And Bryant Gumbel and Katie Couric were desperately trying to figure it out.

A now-famous Today show clip from '94 features Gumbel and Couric cluelessly talking about the Internet. They can't seem to grasp the concept of an email address or the @ symbol.

"Katie said she thought it was 'about,' " says Gumbel.

"Or 'around,' " adds Couric.

"I've never heard it said, I've only seen the mark," continues Gumbel. "What is 'Internet' anyway? Do you write to it like mail?"

"Allison," Couric asks her producer, "can you explain what 'Internet' is?" 

Fast-forward to today, and BMW is using the amusing clip—followed by Gumbel and Couric talking today, just as cluelessly, about the futuristic i3 electric vehicle—in its 2015 Super Bowl ad from Kirshenbaum Bond Senecal + Partners, released Monday morning:

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January 26, 2015, 9:54 AM EST

Similac Has a Big Hit With One of the Most Honest Ads Ever About Parenting Showdown on the playground

Parenting today comes with more than the stress of kids. It comes with the derision of your fellow breeders when you choose a path that goes against their deeply help beliefs. And it's going to happen. No matter how closely you choose your friends, someone—even if it's just another parent at the playground—is going to judge you harshly for your choices.

Similac shows us what happens when our beliefs clash through an ad that's a little bit funny, a little bit moving, and a lot true. It's all about an (almost) all-out playground brawl. It's strollers versus baby slings, breast-fed versus formula-fed, stay-at-home versus working mom, plus yoga moms, lesbian moms and stay-at-home dads.

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January 26, 2015, 5:07 AM EST

ZzzQuil Isn't Feeling the Love From Its Tweet About Landing a Husband 'What is this, the '50s?'

Sleep-aid ZzzQuil left some followers wondering what year it was when they saw the brand's recent engagement-themed tweet.

"SLEEP LIKE he finally proposed," the tweet noted. "And you have been dating for a decade. #SleepLike #engaged #shesaidyes"

The message felt a bit too 1950s for women who'd like to move past the stereotype that peace of mind is all about finding a husband.

Despite being posted late Thursday and sparking quite a lot of backlash, the tweet remained live this morning, and the brand hasn't responded to any of those upset by it. 

Here are just a few of the responses:

January 24, 2015, 2:32 PM EST

Skype Is Great for Lots of Stuff, Like Helping Russian Pet Detectives Find Dogs Named Donut As long as you have sock soup, too

There's a real-live Ace Ventura in Moscow, and Skype wants you to know he uses its technology to help find lost cats and dogs.

Meet Valeriy Subrigov, a former police officer and now a pet detective of 25 years who stars in Pereira & O'Dell's new documentary-style ad for the video chat and messaging service.

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January 23, 2015, 11:44 AM EST

Here's the Simple, Powerful Starbucks Ad You Probably Missed on MLK Day Changing your perspective

Amid all the dubious tweets and outright fails from advertisers on Martin Luther King Jr. Day this past Monday, here's a little gem from Starbucks that flew under the radar.

"It's time to look at things differently. Again," says the copy on the newspaper version of the ad, which ran in The New York Times. The brand also posted versions of the ad to Twitter and Facebook. A rep at one of Starbucks' agencies said it was done in-house by the marketer. "But we all are big fans of it," the agency rep said.

Simple, classy and powerful.

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January 23, 2015, 11:23 AM EST

Ad Student Hijacks Agency Hashtags on Instagram, Hoping for Job Interviews Max Kurstjens wants to negotiate

File this one under creative ways to get agencies' attention.

In hopes of landing an internship at an ad agency, Dutch student Max Kurstjens, who's studying in Sweden, took matters into his own hands. Kurstjens tells AdFreak via email that he struggled to get in touch with the agencies, so he targeted their Instagram hashtags instead.

"Why? To get their attention and to mock the hashtag phenomenon, especially in the advertising world," he says.

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January 23, 2015, 10:48 AM EST

Apple's New China Store Has One Hell of a Beautiful Facade and a Great Story to Tell A 2,000-year-old poem rendered in calligraphy

The new Apple Store in China unites ancient and contemporary design elements to striking effect—its modern steel-and-glass exterior draped by a simple yet elegant mural that contains the text, rendered in traditional Chinese characters, of a 2,000-year-old poem.

"The lines in calligraphy need to have life in them," artist Wang Dongling says of his creation in the new two-minute Apple video below. "They need to have aesthetic feeling. They need to have a kind of magical energy endowed by nature."

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January 23, 2015, 10:24 AM EST

Movie Stars From Iconic Scenes Stare Right at You in FX's Intense, Eerie Promos Neat trick by Imaginary Forces

How would you feel if, during high-tension moments in your favorite movies, the cameras cut to slow motion and the lead actors turned to stare right at you?

Now you might find out, thanks to a new campaign by from Fox Entertainment's movie channel, FXM. Production company Imaginary Forces took key frames from films that are slated to air on the network, and then used 3-D animation techniques to manipulate the characters' faces so they'd be looking at the camera.

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January 23, 2015, 9:39 AM EST

Conan Tours Taco Bell HQ, Visits the Test Kitchen and Ends Up Convulsing on the Floor Seeing how the chalupa is made

If you've ever seen late-night mastermind Conan O'Brien venture into the real world and interact with the commoners, you know you're in for a treat whenever it happens.

Turns out the head of Conan's IT department, Chris Hayes, is a Taco Bell superfan, eating it at least three times a week. As Conan is a benevolent boss, he decides to make Hayes' dream come true and take him to Taco Bell headquarters in Irvine, Calif.

We get an interesting glimpse behind the tortilla curtain, where we see how the magic happens. But more important, comedy ensues as Conan and Hayes rollick through the chalupa palace, interacting with food taste testers, trying new creations in the "Innovation Kitchen" as well as inventing new ones like Conan's Irish-inspired concoction, "The O'Taco."

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January 22, 2015, 1:23 PM EST

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AdFreak is your daily blog of the best and worst of creativity in advertising, media, marketing and design. Follow us as we celebrate (and skewer) the latest, greatest, quirkiest and freakiest commercials, promos, trailers, posters, billboards, logos and package designs around. Edited by Adweek's Tim Nudd and David Griner.

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