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Press Release: Sony Gives Parties a Boost, Indoors or Out

Sony’s SRS-XB32 Portable Speakers

LAS VEGAS, Jan. 7, 2019 /PRNewswire/ — (CES, Booth #17300) — Sony Electronics Inc. today announced a refreshed EXTRA BASS™ wireless speaker line up with the new SRS-XB12, SRS-XB22 and SRS-XB32 portable speakers, along with the bold new GTK-XB72 high-power speaker and an exciting new outdoor party speaker, the GTK-PG10.

GTK-PG10 Outdoor Party Speaker

Press Release: Sony Adds Super-large 8K TVs to the MASTER Series Lineup

LAS VEGAS, Jan. 7, 2019 /PRNewswire/ — (CES, Booth #17300) — Sony Electronics Inc. today announced the new MASTER Series Z9G 8K LCD and A9G 4K OLED televisions. Sony’s MASTER Series TVs represent the pinnacle of picture quality available to home viewers, capable of displaying images that faithfully convey the creators’ intent. The MASTER Series is the name given to only the very best Sony TVs and provides premium picture quality, color, contrast and clarity approaching that of a professional-grade monitor. The MASTER Series TVs also feature Netflix Calibrated Mode and IMAX Enhanced to further ensure that content is delivered as intended.

Press Release: Sony Introduces NextGen 1000XM3 Headphones

Sony Introduces Next-level Noise Cancellation with the WH-1000XM3 Headphones -- Sony Electronics - 08/30/2018
Sony WH-1000XM3 Headphones (PRNewsfoto/Sony Electronics)

SAN DIEGO, Aug. 30, 2018 /PRNewswire/ –Sony Electronics Inc. today announced the WH-1000XM3 noise cancelling headphones, the newest addition to the highly acclaimed Sony 1000X family. This headband-style around ear model offers all of the much loved features from the previous WH-1000XM2 model while adding multiple key improvements, including upgraded noise cancelling performance to enhance the listening and user experi

Launch Event: Sony MASTER Series TVs with Exclusive Netflix Calibrated Mode

Netflix Calibrated Mode on the new Sony MASTER Series TV

NEW YORK, July 31, 2018 /PRNewswire/ — Today Sony Electronics, Inc. announced Netflix Calibrated Mode — available exclusively on the new Sony MASTER Series A9F OLED and Z9F LCD TVs — to ensure cinematic fidelity for the viewing experience on Netflix. Developed by Sony picture quality engineers, in collaboration with Netflix color scientists, Netflix Calibrated Mode delivers picture quality approaching that of a master monitor used for standard reference in motion picture production studios. With one simple menu setting, Netflix members can enjoy precise colors and accurate dynamic contrast, as seen through the eyes of the creator. This is especially evident when watching visually spectacular shows such as the Netflix original series “Lost in Space,” with otherworldly landscapes and creatures draped in atmospheric lighting.

Press Release: Ground Breaking Sound Bars Support Dolby Atmos® and DTS:X™

The HT-X9000F sound bar matches the distinctive design of Sony’s X900F 4K HDR TV series. (PRNewsfoto/Sony Electronics)

LAS VEGAS, Jan. 8, 2018 /PRNewswire/ — 5pm PT (CES, Booth #17300) – Sony Electronics today announced the HT‑Z9F, the world’s first1 3.1ch Dolby Atmos Sound Bar and the HT-X9000F Dolby Atmos sound bar, both designed to further an enhanced, connected, and compelling listening experience for consumers. The premium HT-Z9F Dolby Atmos sound bar, paired with Sony’s unique virtual technology, brings a new level of impressive cinematic-audio to your home. When Dolby Atmos is paired with Sony’s new Vertical Surround Engine, consumers can experience breathtaking virtual three-dimensional sound via an alternative approach to ceiling reflection or up-firing speakers.

Press Release: Sony Introduces Anytime, Anywhere Wireless NC Headphones

Sony’s WF-SP700N truly wireless in-ear headphones for sports

LAS VEGAS, Jan. 8, 2018 /PRNewswire/ — (CES, Booth #17300) — Sony Electronics announced today three new sports wireless headphones for the active, stylish music lover. With wireless-in-ear and truly wireless styles these high quality, great sounding sports headphones come in fashionable colors and offer great options for any active lifestyle. The WF-SP700N truly wireless and WI-SP600N in-ear headphones provide wireless noise cancelling where noise cancelling has seldom gone before, such as in a high intensity cardio class or while walking or jogging. The WI-SP500 in-ear headphones let you train for longer with up to eight hours of battery life on a full charge. 

Twisted Metal

1-Rebel-Without-A-Cause-Poster
James Dean in the movie poster for Rebel Without a Cause. Photo credit: Warner Bros.

I have to admit, until recently I didn’t know much about James Dean beyond what has entered into our collective cultural consciousness: a charismatic method actor who only had a few feature films to his credit before dying at the age of 24 in a car crash. The three movies he made are all classics, Rebel Without a Cause (1955), in which he starred as the eponymous troubled rebel; East of Eden (1955), an adaptation of John Steinbeck’s novel, and his last movie, Giant (1956), a sweeping epic tracing the rise and fall of a Texas cattle rancher. If you know more about him than these three films it might be because you’ve seen James Dean: Forever Young, or one of the many other biopics that have been produced over the years.

I was compelled to look into James Dean’s life, or more specifically, the circumstances surrounding his death, when I found myself driving through the exact location of his tragic accident. I had always assumed that Dean wrapped his car around a tree in a drunken stupor. And when I saw that the memorial to his death is a concrete and stainless-steel sculpture wrapped around a tree in desolate Cholame, CA, that might have confirmed my assumption. But that’s not what happened, nor is that tree where the accident took place.

Close-up of the James Dean Memorial in Cholame, CA, wrapping around a tree about a mile west of where the accident took place. The memorial is made of stainless steel but looks a bit worse for wear from the removal of graffiti over the years. Souvenir hunters regularly steal the letters and numbers off of the memorial as well (ah, people, really?!)
photo credit: Tom Laemmel

I stopped at the James Dean Memorial on my way to a few days of wine tasting in Paso Robles, in the heart of the California Central Coast wine country. When James Dean died — 62 years ago to this very day — he was also on this way to “Paso” (as the locals call it) where he planned to have dinner with some fellow racers before heading on to Salinas for an event. He had been driving most of the day (as had I) and neither of us had been drinking any alcohol (yet).

James Dean’s accident occurred on September 30, 1955. He was driving west towards Paso on Highway 466 (now 46), approaching the intersection of Highway 41. Dean was in his new Porsche 550 Spyder, which he had picked up that morning in Hollywood, a 4+ hour drive to the south. His Porsche factory-trained mechanic, who was his passenger at the time of the accident, had encouraged Dean to drive the car from Los Angeles to Salinas to help break it in. At approximately 5:45pm a Cal Poly State University student, Donald Turnupseed, driving east, made a turn from Highway 46 onto 41 heading north, toward Fresno, apparently not seeing Dean’s silver Spyder heading towards him in the opposite direction. Dean collided with the turning car and was killed, his mechanic and Turnupseed survived the accident.

James Dean getting gas after picking up his Porsche from Competition Motors on 1219 N. Vine Street, in Hollywood, CA. on the day of the accident. Behind him is his Ford Country Squire station wagon and an attached trailer for the Porsche’s return trip. (photo credit: from the book James Dean at Speed, 2005.)

There are conflicting estimates as to Dean’s speed at the time of the crash, anywhere from below the posted 60 mph speed limit to in excess of 85 mph. When I stopped at the scene of the accident, now a median adjacent to the intersection (they realigned Highways 41 and 46 a bit), I was struck with what dumb luck the whole thing must have been. There was nothing out there in 2015, no traffic, no houses, no nothing, just the intersection of two quiet country highways. It must have been even quieter in 1955. So the fact that these two cars met at all was something of a fluke — a horrible coincidence of being in the wrong place at the wrong time. If Donald Turnupseed had left home just a minute earlier, or if Dean had lingered just a few moments longer while stopping for sodas at Blackwell’s Corner 20 minutes earlier, the crash may never have occurred at all.

Close to where James Dean crashed at 5:45pm on September 30, 1955, in Cholame, CA. There is nothing to crash into around here, not even a tree. Not the exact location because it’s hard to pinpoint with the road having been realigned, but very close. (Photo credit: Tom Laemmel)
 
The wreckage of James Dean’s Porsche 550 Spyder on the night of the crash.
(photo credit: from the book James Dean at Speed, 2005.)

There have been more movies made about James Dean than the movies he has made. Have you seen any of them?