Illumiroom in Paris

Brett had a great time at his conference in Paris!  He gave an awesome presentation on his work, Illumiroom, at the CHI2013 conference.  This was the first time that actual details on the technology behind the project were released.  (A teaser video was released a little while ago and we shared it with you here).

If you’re interested in watching any of the interviews with the tech world press, here is one from Engadget and one from PC world  (I think there are a lot of these flying around but those two are good examples)  🙂

If you would like to watch the research video and/or the video that Microsoft Research released as a teaser you can check it out on Brett’s research website here.  Brett’s research website in general is pretty cool…it details each one of his projects and shows the cool videos for each one  🙂  Enjoy!




Jet Lag – A what not to do

When Brett and I arrived in Paris we hauled ourselves off the plane, wound our way through the airport, bought metro passes for the week along with RER tickets from and back to the airport, and headed into the heart of Paris.  After an RER ride and some walking (along with a necessary, ‘about face’, to reoriente ourselves in the correct direction haha), we found our apartment!


(normally the shop fronts on either side of the entrance door were open and the area looked quite nice 🙂  )

We were a bit early so we went and grabbed un café (actually we had deux café cremes….I really don’t like plain espresso)  🙂


and then went to meet the owner of the apartment we were renting for the week.  That day we decided to explore our neighborhood and to see whatever we could see by walking in random directions.  We ended up traversing most of the city and found this cool gallery area near Montmartre

IMG_0565We went back to our apartment around 5 pm and were exhausted.  Brett even started falling asleep on the couch around 6 pm…but our ‘landlord’ was supposed to drop off more towels for us around 8 and I just couldn’t have us sleeping in the other room as early as 8 pm when he came by!  So we headed out for a dinner near the modern art museum, le Centre Pompidou, complete with wine 🙂


By the time we got back to the apartment is was near 10 pm and we headed to bed.  Here is where the trouble started….we didn’t set an alarm.  🙂  We figured that we’d spent so much time traveling, hadn’t slept very much on the plane, and just needed to get some sleep.  The next day we woke up at noon… That seems fine enough for a vacation, I guess…, but we had SO much trouble getting to bed the next night and slept quite poorly.  (its really not fun having sleep issues on vacation)   We also had an issue with our alarm that next morning and slept until noon again!

The following night we were both up until around 3 am trying to fall asleep…I even put my phone next to me that night so that I would definitely hear the alarm the next morning.  The next day we woke up a little after 6 to catch a train to Compiègne, the city where I lived for over a year.  We were sleepy on the train but recovered and had a great day.  From then on our hours were much better.  We learned our lesson though….when trying to reorient yourself to a new time system…14 hours of sleep and sleeping until noon isn’t necessary 🙂




Paris Trip Self Portraits

Brett and I had a lot of fun on our trip to Paris.  Brett was busy the entire time taking pictures and I, while I carried my nice camera around a few of the days we were there, mostly served as the ‘general photo/iPhone photo taker’ to balance out his more ‘artsy’ approaches 😉  Here are some of our self portraits taken from my phone (Brett’s is still in France so I can’t use those yet haha)

Brett and Mallory, sitting on the edge of la Seine (the river running through Paris)…Brett was sure that I was going to drop my phone in the river 🙂


This picture is taken in the evening, outside of the entrance to le Louvre


After a long day of walking, we very much enjoyed relaxing on the couch in our rented apartment


This picture was taken in the Jardin du Luxembourg


Here we are around Montmartre and Sacré Coeur


and in the Musée d’Orsay (my favorite museum so far)  🙂  (we are a little tired and hungry in this one hehe)


I find self portraits to be an interesting experience…you’re taking a picture, often from a weird angle because the camera is attached to part of the person still in the photo, and yet you want to get some sort of your surroundings included.  We had fun taking them though  🙂


Girly Wednesday ~ iii

Traveling to Paris meant trying out some new hairstyles 🙂

I found a fun new hair bun to try out a little while back but have just recently had enough hair to do it correctly!  This blog shows exactly how to style this lovely bun in under 3 minutes 🙂  The secret is the sock hidden underneath that gives the bun volume and structure.



All you’ll need are a sock with the toe cut off and rolled upon itself (seriously, watch the video of the link I gave at the start of this article…its so easy!), a hair elastic, and some bobby pins.


That day in Paris, among lots of other things, Brett and I went up La Tour Eiffel and it was quite windy.  The bun lasted all through our crazy Paris sightseeing day.  I brought along another hair rubber band just in case something drastic happened with my coiffed hair.  As you can see though, from our evening relaxing picture, the bun successfully survived the day!


Do you have any ‘go to’ hair styles for an elegant, yet super fast look?  🙂