My 1200 mph Commute

If anyone was a fan of “Out of Control”, the wacky Dave Coulier hosted show on Nickelodeon, they’ll probably remember a segment known as “Hurry Up!”. During the segment, Dave would take a video clip submitted by a viewer, and “hurry up” a portion of their day that was considered boring, dreary, and otherwise a chore. For example, hurrying up a school day or math test, but managing to slow time back down during recess or some other equally awesome event.

Over the summer, I decided to take that concept and make a ds106 assignment out of it called “Speed Up Your Work Day”. The idea was to both show people what it is I do for a good portion of my day, as well as have a bit of fun with video editing, and seeing how playing around with time affects a digital story. And that’s when I had the revelation….most of what makes storytelling, whether it’s written, spoken, or delivered via video, is pacing. You can destroy the best joke in the world, bore people to tears with a moving personal testament, or leave your audience cold if you can’t match the pace of the story with the context (I hope I managed to to do this with this video).

As we continue to transform how we construct, consume, and dissect narrative in the classrooms with students, it’s important that we look at how video, as well as written text, is being explored. And I use the word “explore” on purpose, as the aesthetic created with audio and video is just as subjective as with the written word. In simpler terms….if you’re doing a video project with your students, see how you can speed up or slow down the video to elicit different emotion or effect by viewers.


  1. Hi Ben –

    I’m in my class today for the face-to-face session and we just had a look at your video. I love playing around with time lapse photography as well. There always is a change in perspective that happens when you compress or expand time. I’d love to see the 30sec version as well – wouldn’t you rather travel almost 5000 MPH? That’s almost MACH 7!

    1. Cool, very geeked to have made my debut in an official 4 walled ds106 classroom 🙂

      Truth be told, I actually wanted to make this video faster, but was limited by my tools. iMovie can only speed up video to 2500% of the original speed. I do have Premier, so this might be a good excuse to break it in and try to break the sound barrier with my Toyota!

      1. Hey Ben, you can work around the iMovie limit. You either apply the speed up effect again, or export the clip as a movie, bring it back in and apply the effect again to the sped up clip. You can speed it up as much as you darn well please as long as you have the patience to keep iterating.

  2. Reminds me of some type of driving game with an arcade twist. The other commuters almost look like they’re racing you. Def interesting to watch.

    1. Funny you should say that…my wife said the same thing while viewing, like it was playing a video game. I actually had that in mind when I choose the music, as the video played so nicely into that arcade like vibe (brownie points if you can guess the video game the music came from).

  3. Wow, talk about a blast from the past, Out of Control. I totally remember that show. Looking at clips from Youtube it’s not as cool as I remember it being at the time though.

  4. Brilliant. There is much more to these than just speeding up, like the transition from the melodic opening to the frenetic ride, and the relative slow down at red lights. And the pairing of musics adds much.

    I’d like to hear more on the production side- was this a video mounted on your dash? it is smooth. Was it continuous video? How dod you speed up slow down?

    Share the method, brother!

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