The History of the Boombot

Ghetto fab-o-lous skullyboom circa 2009

The original Boombot was conceived as an alternative to headphones. The founder of Boombotix, Lief Storer, was commuting via bicycle to and from work across a mile of traffic and three miles of bayside estuary. He wanted something that would be safer than headphones while also immersing himself in the outdoors with his music. He worked as an engineer by day and an artist by night. When the company flew him to Taiwan to work on LED lighting systems, he discovered Japanese urban vinyl toy design. He began incorporating the toy medium into his work before coming across a Do-it-Yourself toy called the Skully.

The Skully featured asymmetrical eyes in a tennis ball-sized form factor. The toy was made of PVC on a rotocast. Using the shell and some off-the-shelf portable speaker components and a Motorola walkie-talkie belt clip, Lief assembled the first working prototypes. Many of his friends took interest in the product, and a company was beginning to form. Over the next year, Lief spent his off-hours meticulously refining the design to move closer to a satisfactory working prototype. The first production prototypes were tested in rain drenched San Francisco and the deep treacherous powder throughout Lake Tahoe.

By April of 2010, Lief had raised enough private equity and built enough into the design to bring the first Boombots to the market. They were super simple, featuring an on/off button, rechargeable battery, retractable audio cable, and a hip clip.

Beastie Boys to Monster Energy Drink: Quit Stealing Our Music!

Group files suit against energy drink maker over illegal use of their music

Beastie Boys

NO SLEEP TILL . . . the bank?

If all goes accordingly, it appears this may very well be the case for the Beastie Boys.

Reps for the New York-based rap trio have filed a suit against energy drink giant, Monster, alleging that “Monster, without plaintiffs’ consent, synchronized and recorded (Beastie Boys music) with visual and other material in the creation of promotional video . . . for Monster products.”

Thumbing through the fine print, the suit specifically refers to unlicensed Beastie Boys material in a clip for Monster’s “Ruckus in the Rockies 2012” snowboarding event held this past May. Also at issue is a Monster promo which included a link to a downloadable free MP3 that contained 23 minutes of music filled with some of the group’s most popular songs.

Now this may be slightly confusing for anyone involved in action sports whose seen videos with a Beastie Boy song or two in the background — that’s actually okay to do by Mike D, Ad-Rock, and the late, great Mr. MCA.

You see, the group has established a sharp distinction between the promotional and artistic use of their music. Skaters, bikers, and boarders have the right to use the music in personal “home-movie” videos to showcase their skills. Using the Beastie Boys’ songs specifically for advertisements, however, is a big no-no.

Especially when it’s without the group’s permission.

As a matter of fact, late Beastie Boys member Adam “MCA” Yauch, who passed away of cancer this past May, actually addressed this issue in his will, stating “in no event may my image or name or any music or any artistic property created by me be used for advertising purposes.”

Sounds pretty clear to the folks here at the world’s best portable mini speaker. Guess it was kind of confusing to the brains in charge at Monster.

Breaking it all down, in their case again Monster, Michael “Mike D” Diamond, Adam “Ad-Rock” Horovitz, and Dechen Yauch (executor of the estate of Adam “MCA” Yauch) are together seeking “no less than $150,000” for each infringement Monster conducted, among other damages.

That’s a lot of Red Bull, but hey, I guess sometimes you just need to fight for your right to protect your $hit.

Top 10 Athlete Excuses for Failed Drug Tests

If you’re going to cheat, at least be like this deceiving bunch and come up with a creative excuse why

With the baseball season getting underway, it got me to thinking: what are some of the best excuses out there for failed drug tests?

So I did a little research, enjoyed some laughs, and then compiled this list of the 10 best excuses I found. Since it’s a new ball season, we’re bound to get a bounty of new excuses, so I chose to avoid baseball entirely, for now, at least.

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Team Rider Spotlight: Melissa Riitano

Melissa is KILLING IT. As one of our newest additions to the team, Melissa has been in full-shred mode this winter in Park City, UT and around Montana, and has been progressing like mad! Shredding amongst the likes of Scotty Arnold, Sage Kotsenburg, and Torah Bright, Melissa has been throwing down like the best of them.

Check out these photos, courtesy of www.annademasi.com. Because remember, pics or it didn’t happen!!

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Arbor Snowboards Amateur Rail Jam Face Off

Arbor snowboards is putting together a list of some of the top East Coast riders for an epic rail jam showdown.  In case you don’t know, the East Coast is notorious for having boiler plat ice crap snow.  On the flip side, they are known for having some of the most serious urban jibbing talent in the snow industry.  We would expect that this rail jam would not have it any other way.  Check out Arbor Collective to get the low down on the event in Big Boulder Park PA.