What's All This Then?

This site is edited by Coudal Partners, a design, advertising and interactive studio in Chicago, as an ongoing experiment in web publishing, design and commerce. [Next]

What's All This Then?

Thanks for visiting. If browsing around here while at work has had a negative effect on your productivity we're sorry but imagine what it's done to ours. [Hide]

Saturday Edition

This is our studio site. Among lots of other things, we run Field Notes Brand,
go there right now and spend lots of money. Thanks.

Coudal Partners

Who Shot What Where?

Let’s Do Lunch

A New Puzzler from Michele

Periodically we publish a logic puzzler. Our most popular one was Einstein's Fish which happened to coincide with the holidays. Lots of people wrote to say they worked the puzzle at their family parties. So, let's make it a tradition. Print out this page and give your relatives something new to argue about this year and you might even win a cool prize.

The Set Up

Four movie actors are in a cafe, sitting together at a square table, like the one shown here with the seats numbered. They are discussing their most recent projects while waiting for their salads. Each has just returned from a different location where he or she was shooting a different type of film, one of which is a costume drama.

From the information provided can you figure out where each person sat, his or her full name, the location he or she had just returned from, and the type of movie each had shot?

The Details

1. York (who isn't sitting in seat #1) shot a science fiction movie.
2. The person sitting in seat #2 didn't just return from Tokyo.
3. Julia is in seat #3.
4. Hannah (who isn't sitting in seat #4) is across from the person who just returned from Hawaii.
5. Marks is sitting to the left of the person who just returned from Spain.
6. Moon did not shoot an action thriller.
7. Glory and Robert are sitting next to each other; one of them is surnamed Smith and the other had just returned from Ireland.
8. Robert (who isn't Moon) shot a romantic comedy.

There are no tricks, pure logic will get you the correct answer. And yes, there is enough information to arrive at the only correct answer.

Prizes: Send your correct answer and/or complaints to and we'll randomly pick two people who get it right and if they are in the Chicago area we'll invite them to our regular Thursday lunch with 37signals, catered at our studios by Big Delicious Planet. If they're out of the area we'll send them an authentic Chicago deep-dish pizza. Five other winners we'll receive a 3-Pack of Field Notes Memo Books. Good luck.

Note: We were tempted to include the phrase "show your work" with the rules for entry but then we figured that any dork who would Google a puzzle like this in order to win would have to live with self-loathing and guilt for the rest of their life and that would far outweigh the value of the prize package.

Note II: the deadline for entry is Friday, November 30th. We'll announce the winners after that and we'll post the answers first to our RSS feed, which gives you the freshest Fresh Signals all day long and includes updates on contests and other stuff on the site too. So you might wanna subscribe.

Note III: For people who like this sort of thing here are our previous puzzlers: Einstein's Fish, School of Government, Da Vinci's Other Code and Which Porn Star Ate the Most Hot Dogs? For a notice when we post the next puzzler and other stuff, add your email address under "Infrequent Mail" to the right.

Note IV: The photo of the table is not meant to suggest who anyone is or where they are sitting. It's just so you know how to identify the seats by number.

Note VII: It's time to roll out the red carpet and watch the winners saunter on down to the paparazzi's flashing light bulbs, fans screaming their names, free swag and eternal fame and fortune. Well, I may be exaggerating a bit, but at least the free swag part is right.

Five runners up will get a free 3-pack of Field Notes Brand Memo Books and our two Grand Prize Winners will either get a Chicago Style Deep Dish pizza delivered to their door if they are out of the Chicago area or a lunch from Big Delicious Planet with us and the 37signals crew here at our studio if they are in the area and are so inclined. And in a last minute move to mollify the maddened, we will give the most frustrated puzzle player (as judged by the harshness of tone in emails received) a free Nick Campbell Comic Book Poster in the hopes that the sight of all those comic book covers will bring a smile to his/her face. All winners were chosen at random from the correct entries and the most frustrated was chosen from all entries.

So without further ado, the Five Runners up are: Shawn Campbell, Susie Talbert, Jesse Marass, Brian Norris, and Jill Hubley.

The Most Frustrated Puzzle Player is: Eric Mersmann, who did not "sound like a total d-bag" as he said.

Drum roll please.... The Grand Prize Winners are: Mike Hiscock in Connecticut Jaimie Vargas in Chicago.

Thanks to all who sent in answers and keep checking back as the next puzzle is on the horizon.

Here's the solution. No peeking if you haven't tried to solve the puzzler yet.

Visit our Cover Page for links to lots more puzzles, projects and films.

A Thing We Made:

We hated the options available for custom packaging DVDs and CDs so we created a brand that gives creative professionals and hobbyists the tools to make great stuff. Here's a bit from the latest Jewelboxing weblog entry:

Jewel Boxing

A Dream Vacation in the Greek Islands

Ever since I was a little girl, I’ve been extremely fascinated with Greece and have always dreamed of vacationing there. Almost 30 years later it seems that my dream may finally come true. On a whim, I played the lottery last month and won $250,000 which is another dream that came true. One of my immediate thoughts was that I would finally be able to visit the Greek Islands. My initial thought was to stay at one of Mykonos luxury villas that are available to rent year round. I have to put a lot of careful thought into this as I want to have one of the best experiences of my life.

I searched the internet for rental properties in Mykonos and was beyond happy with what I found. I found one particular company that rents villas on the island. They have a list of properties, along with photographs, of what is available. The pictures were absolutely breathtaking and I could not stop looking at them. They are some of the most luxurious homes I have ever seen in my life. The views from the villas were absolutely amazing. They have a wide range of rentals that are on the beach and other stunning locations around the island. This real estate company offers too many amenities to list here and I will be looking further into them.

I plan on calling this company tomorrow and enlist their help in planning my perfect vacation. I think it would be so much fun to spend Christmas and New Years in Greece so that is what I’m aiming for. I’m so excited and can hardly contain my enthusiasm about this once in a lifetime experience. Next, I need to call my family because I want them to share in my dream come true and treat them to a fun family adventure.

October 10, 2017 | Category: Blog

Something I Got from Europe

While I was in Europe visiting a friend, he gave me some Vimax pills to use when I hooked up with a local girl. I told him that I didn’t need to use any pills, but he assured me that I would not regret using them. He was right, and I had the best night of my life, and the woman I was with would certainly agree to that. When I got back home, I looked for the best place to buy Vimax in Australia, because I wanted to have the same experience that I did when I was in Europe.

I found out that I could purchase the pills online from an store that sells products of that nature. Continue reading

September 23, 2017 | Category: Blog

MacUser Redux

From the July MacUser Magazine (which nobody told me about and if they had I would have been happy to send them a free 20pack so if you see us mentioned somewhere cool don’t assume that we know about it, drop us a note and if it’s news to us we’ll take care of you) “Like all the best ideas, Jewelboxing came about when the system’s founders, the designers at Coudal Partners, couldn’t find an easy way to package up their digital work…” A nice sidebar on p63. Thanks for that. For more on how this thing got started, read this early entry in the JB blog.

If I don’t start reeling them off in big chunks I’m never going to get cought up on my thank-yous, and that’s just bad manners. So here’s a big wet kiss to San Francisco, Washington, Kilcullen, LA, Corvallis, Honolulu, NYC, Boulder, Waikato, Cypress, Bury, Versailles, Philadelphia, Mt. Pleasant, Denton, Freemans Bay, Bristol, Saratoga Springs, Ft. Myers and Mequon.

August 27, 2017 | Category: Blog

Make Up Your Own Bad Headline Playing Off the Phrase “You’ve Got Mail.”

We have lots of ways to track where our customers come from. Some are scientific and some not so much. The majority of our site visitors come from links on blogs and in forums. The second biggest chunk come from ads we’ve placed in a variety of places and from contests and promotions we created or sponsored. Search results come third but we’ve seen a big spike in those since AOL dropped a load of promotional direct-mail discs on North America that were packaged using the Super Jewel Box King.

A number of people have told us they received the case. Loved it. Found the SJB logo. Googled it. And there we were. Bingo.

We sincerely hope this promotion been helpful to AOL and we’d like to suggest that they continue ther progarm aggressively. It just goes to show that if you work hard, it doesn’t always matter. Sometimes being a little lucky is better. We’re also lucky to have new friends in Provo, Marina del Rey, Benbrook, NYC, Crystal Lake and Brooklyn.

August 27, 2017 | Category: Blog

We Have Winnahs

The Big Smoker’s In12 contest winners have been announced. And the people who called themselves a contemporary art co and “”used six songs we’d never heard of by people we’d never heard of for the first leg of the journey and then just repeated those same six songs for the second leg didn’t win. Congrats to Ian Pointer of Bicester, UK and Allison Bloom of Madison, Wisconsin who did.

The idea was to put together a songlist that got the listener from London to Chicago. Here’s how we did it with a song of thanks. London, Vancouver, Rockwall, Framingham, Toronto, Columbus, Oslo, Trenton, Lithia Springs, Calgary, Orange and Chicago.

August 27, 2017 | Category: Blog

Enter and Enter and Enter to Win

Worth 1000 Jewelboxing Photoshop Contest. “Your task is to think up a fake music album or movie and create a cover for it.”

Don’t break the chain. the ever-popular Trivia Chain is rolling along at Ad-Land. Answer a question about advertising with a question about advertising and win.

$2500 and More is taking submissions at Threadless. The Jewelboxing part of the prize package pales in comparison to the loot but anyway..

Ryan Schroeder won a Jewelboxing 20pack from Daring Fireball’s membership drive. The Big Smoker’s In12 contestwinner will to be announced soon.

You can still enter the Challenge at Photoforums to win a Jewelboxing system and will soon be able to enter a very funny contest at Slatch. Plus we have a huge contest idea for later in the summer with a really sweet prize but we don’t have it all figured out yet so we wan’t say anything more about it. Yet.

To everyone in River Falls, Metairie, Lilburn, Lund, Westfield, NYC, Pittsburgh, LA, Portland, Gatwick, Groningen, Mt. Laurel, Wagga Wagga, Halifax, Portland, Staten Island and Chicago, you’re all winners in our book.

August 27, 2017 | Category: Blog

It Takes All Kinds

We don’t know what every customer is doing with his/her Jewelboxing system. We’ve asked a few and checked the sites of others and here’s a partial list of who’s buying and for what.

College Video Yearbooks. Student Portfolios. Kid Party Gifts. Animators. Churches. Tasteful Nude Photographers. Not-So-Tasteful Nude Photographers. Film Companies. Wedding Photos. Software Applications. Goth Heavy Metal Band Demos. Christian Heavy Metal Band Demos. Charity Appeals. Interactive Annual Reports. Directors. DPs. Food Stylists. Gaffers. Stuntmen. Totally Amazing Digital Effects Companies named Eyeball. Linux Distros. Guys With Girlfriends. Guys Working on Getting Girlfriends. Guys With No Hope of Ever Having Girlfriends. Girls With Girlfriends. Architects. Landscape Architects. Usabilty Architects. Elvis Impersonators (Never Standards, Always Kings). Astronomers. A Really Big, Really Cool Hollywood Movie Company Who We’d Like to Name But Better Not. Jason, Brendan, Brian and Me.

We’re sure there are more. If you’re using Jewelboxing for something you’d like the world to see, email us at crew at jewelboxing dot com and perhaps we’ll feature it on our Examples and Inspirations page. Thanks for using our systems in Centreville, Cincinnati, Sandy, Philadelphia, Toledo, Lincoln, Cambridge, Easthampton, Issy les Moulineaux, Chicago, Yardley and NYC. (Image swiped from here.)

August 27, 2017 | Category: Blog

Making Movies is Hard

You gotta get funded, deal with anxious writers, goofball actors and knuckleheaded studio employees. At the end of the process, what are you left with? More than likely an hour and change of footage you’re not really proud of.

On the other hand, making promo materials for a movie is easy. Just think of a high-concept, give it a title and do a couple layouts. No stress. No ulcer. No nothing, but the satisfaction of letting others see your work. Watch Worth 1000this week for a chance to design the DVD release of your great-unmade movie project and you might win a Jewelboxing system.

I’d like to thank the Academy and my Mom and Dad and of course my agent for sticking by me and London, Hollywood, Calgary, Las Vegas, Toronto, Oklahoma City, Hagerstown, Tampa, LA, NYC, Meraux and Austin too.

August 27, 2017 | Category: Blog

Armed and Dangerous

For those of you keen on lists of cities, here’s an attempt to begin catch up on our roll-call of appreciation. If you’re in one of these places and you haven’t bought a Jewelboxing system yet, consider yourself warned. The competition might have a new, aerodynamic, polystyrene arrow in their quiver. Beaverton, Las Vegas, Isleworth, Miami, Siloam Springs, Franklin Park, Chicago, Sparta, Kendal, Boston, Overland Park, Dayton, Toronto, Pittsburgh, Santa Monica, Bonita Springs, Newport Beach, NYC, Lancaster, LA, Austerlitz, Tacoma, Kennesaw and Middleboro.

August 27, 2017 | Category: Blog

Revamp This

Only thirty copies of the Akina Nakamori ‘Revamp’ CD, are being made available and we’re glad to say that all of them are being packaged using our system. We’ll show you what the crew has done with the disc and it’s surroundings as soon as we get ours in the mail.

Short-runs of big ideas. That’s just about sums it up.

Oh to be sitting on the front steps in Oceanside, Scottsburg, Port Townsend, NYC, Roslindale, Brooklyn, London, Gainesville, San Diego, Singapore, Villette and Littleton as the summer days fade into a rosy twilgiht and lightning bugs lead laughing children in circles on the lawn.

August 27, 2017 | Category: Blog

Our Staff Will Be Glad to Help You as Soon as They’re Done Dealing With A Personal Matter of Some Delicacy

To a certain person in New York City whose email address keeps bouncing and who asked us a long poetic question about the possibility of using our system to produce a demo reel for a super-secret game project involving virtual sex and classical music, the answer you’re looking for is “sixty”.

Our undying affection and deep respect goes out to our new friends in St. Paul, Arden, West Newton. Emeryville, Menlo Park, Memphis, Manhattan, Burbank, Arlington, Easthampton, Seattle and Santa Monica.

August 27, 2017 | Category: Blog

Music To Our Eyes

We’ve got a bit of a backlog of projects to be added to our Examples + Inspirations section and we’re going to try to get those up this week. Music, film and photography showreels lead the way. Contests continue at the The Big Smoker and at PhotoForums if you’d rather win than buy and finally, we’ve been amazed at the number of people buying the “New Standards” for music demos. If you’re an independent musician, or hang around with one, and you have an idea for a promotion to introduce Jewelboxing to people in that field drop us a line. We’ll try just about anything once.

A tip o’ the collective cap to Villette, Barrie, Woodstock, San Francisco, Arden and Enfield.

August 27, 2017 | Category: Blog

Chicago to London in Twelve Songs

We’re sponsoring a cool new contest at The Big Smoker. It’s called In12, and you could win a 60pack or a 30pack of our “New Standards.”

“We want you to come up with a tracklisting for a mixtape. That mixtape has to take the listener on an aural journey from Chicago (where Jewelboxing work their magic) to London (where we are). And you have to do all that in twelve songs. Clever huh? How you manage this task is up to you. We just want a dozen tunes which conjour up a transatlantic voyage in an imaginative and original way. You’ve got until the end of June to get your entries in.

Other places you might go in twelve songs include LA, Milwaukee, Roanoke, Brighton, Southampton and Roswell.

August 27, 2017 | Category: Blog

Massive Cover Up Exposed

The other day I followed a link to a Photoshop competition at Worth1000. The challenge was to clothe famous nudes. A funny idea, but perhaps not earth-shatteringly so. However, when I got there, I was blown away by the technical skill and imagination displayed in the entries. Since our first (and pretty much only) rule for marketing Jewelboxing is to try and find ways to reach people like ourselves, we’ve decided to sponsor Worth1000 for June. So clean your brushes because there will be some chances to win a few 20packs during the month.

Classical beauty can frequently be found in Singapore, London, LA, Lindenhurst, Kennesaw, Pittsburgh, Boston, Providence, Centannial, Newport Beach, NYC and Hoboken.

August 27, 2017 | Category: Blog

Other Things You Can Do With Paper

We’ve added Santamaria’s sleek new showreel to our Examples + Inspirations section and Juergen and company were nice enough to allow us to share this amazing piece of anmationwith you.

We’ll get caught up on these mentions soon. Starting with the upstanding citizens of Miami, Flintridge, Kennesaw, Seattle, Toronto, Lilburn, Bedfordshire, Elroy, West Orange, NYC, LA and Davie.

August 27, 2017 | Category: Blog

Making a Salami and Swiss Cheese Sandwich or Using Our New 2-Disc Hub

Starting right this very minute (well actually a couple days ago) all of our King (movie-sized) cases come equipped with a new two disc-holding hub. Read the last entry of our Frequently Asked Questionsfor more on the basics of the mechanism involved. Now the hub holds two discs, with one floating snugly and held in place above the other so they don’t touch. If you use only one disc, you’ll never notice the difference. Nice huh? Check this little video we made this morning (right before lunch) demonstrating exactly how it works.

The Spring Jewelboxing Tour continues apace. Venues include Aertesia, Alpharetta, Rockwall, Kingsley, St. Louis, Austerlitz, Buffalo. Pleasantville, Santa Monica, Boston, London and Tacoma.

August 27, 2017 | Category: Blog

Our Appointed Rounds

We uploaded all the information about our New Standards to the site at 3:45 Monday afternoon and at 3:53, Brian from Newport Beach made the first ‘official’ purchase of a 60pack. I wrote him to thank him for being first in line and asked him how he happened to place the order at almost the exact moment the product became available. He said. “…awesome! I was just sitting thinking ‘Hey, I wonder if they’ve released those things yet.’ And then boom! There they were.”

Turns out Brian is a previous customer too as his next mail included this pix and note. “I think I promised you some pics of my jb’s in action. Here’s a couple shot against a recently destroyed bathtub. My site isn’t ready yet, so I have no self-promotional linkage, just a picture of an awesome package with a decent product inside.”

One of the next orders for Standards was from Jan in Lindigo Sweden. I asked him how he found us. He answered, “Just the usual search engine madness. I was looking for something completely different and landed on a weblog that had an entry on your product. So I went to your site and found out in your weblog that you would start offering music size jewelboxes. So I kept coming back once in a while until they were available.” I guess maybe this blogging for business concept has some validity.

They’re setting new standards for their presentations in Santa Monica, Middleboro, Gardena, Kaysville, Houston and LA.

August 27, 2017 | Category: Blog

And New Champion…

Our second product is now available. The New Standard is a music-sized version of the Super Jewel Box and it comes in 30, 60 and 150packs with everything you need to produce great-looking band demos, mix tapes or whatever. Go to BestBuy and purchase any old music CD. Spend half an hour unpacking it and then lay it down on the kitchen table. Take one of ours and place it right next to it. The Jewelboxing Standard will kick its ass all over the place. It’s a stronger, cleaner, better designed, more durable product. And once you’re done with the layout, no doubt it’ll be better-looking too.

In other news, we’ve refined our fulfillment and shipping procedures and have been able to reduce costs to many places. Most notably, our biggest packages, the 100pack of Kings and the 150pack of Standards are now priced at $195 instead of the the previous $220. You can save fifty bucks when you order those. Plus, we’ve got a couple cool collaborative contests ready to go for the Standards and we’ll give you all the details about those soon.

The ongoing roll call of good taste would be incomplete without a mention of Chicago, Greenlawn, Austin, NYC, Lancaster, Jobstown, Fort Lauderdale, San Antonio, Toronto, Paris, Kensington and Aukland. And also Dan Benjamin who gave us a hand with a vexing PHP problem.

August 27, 2017 | Category: Blog

The Picture is Getting Mighty Crowded

I stumbled across a nice mention of our product at Greg.org and also a link to an an article in today’s New York Times [reg. req.] that pretty much says what we’ve been saying all along. With a little training, a little talent and a little taste, pretty much anybody can be a film or record producer, smarmy or otherwise. And with our system, your products won’t just look as good as commercial releases, they’ll look better.

Santa Monica, Caribou, Bonita Springs, Newport Beach, Ramsey and Aventura, have your people call our people and we’ll take a meeting about something.

August 27, 2017 | Category: Blog

Standard Operating Procedures

With the launch of The New Standards,imminent (really) we’re looking for ways to promote that product to folks who make their own mix-tapes or record their own music or package demos for bands and musicians. If you are one of those or know of place where people like that gather online, drop us a note at crew at jewelboxing dot com. We’d love to put a couple contests up and offer some product as prizes. We have two such promotions ready to go and we’d like to get a couple more on the schedule for June.

We’ve never tried any outbound email for Jewelboxing and are interested in knowing what tools people are using to manage lists and mails, including an automated way for people to subscribe and unsubscribe. Let us know if you have a recommendation.

We can’t speak highly enough about Kendal, Denver, NYC x 2, Boston x 3, Valencia, Santa Rosa, Overland Park, Toronto and London.

August 27, 2017 | Category: Blog

In the Details

One of the biggest problems we face in expanding this Jewelboxing thing is finding the time to make sure everything is perfect. We’ve been slower than we would have liked to roll out new products and features (see TripDisc) mostly because we’d rather be late and great than early and good. Client work is still a big part of the CP Studio, and we’ve basically been thinking of Jewelboxing as a big, demanding client. It can’t overwhelm everything else but it needs the attention and service that our customers deserve. So we’re walking it a bit slowly. That said, The New Standards are on the way. We’ve actually shipped about a dozen orders of them, to people who had to have them right now. Write us if you’re like that. Plus we’ll have a couple really cool new promotions and partnerships to announce soon too.

‘Really cool’ doesn’t begin to tell the stories locked up in our hearts about Tustin, Waikato, Ft. Wayne, Copenhagen, NYC and Sparta.

August 27, 2017 | Category: Blog

The End of the Chain

The final winner of a 20pack in the Ad Land Trivia Chain is Robert Hinchcliffe of the excellent Big Smoker. Thanks to everyone who played. Got an idea for a contest or promotion? We’re more than likely up for it, just give us a shout.

I’d like to teach the word to quiz
in perfect harmony

I’d like to say, the answer is
Fay Weldon and Salman Rushdie.

I’d like to pose another link
In this crafty chain

So tell me who spilled Cinzano on
Joan Collins on a plane.

Here’s to Vegas, NYC, Howard Beach, Mequon, Isleworth and Miami

August 27, 2017 | Category: Blog

Salt and Shaker

We’re sponsoring a contest at The Morning News this week that features the photography of Marshall Sokoloff. Check it out. In other news, it looks like Wednesday will be the day for the launch of The New Standards. A few more packing and shipping tests are needed. We’ll toss a test pack or two out the window. Kick another down the stairs and maybe even head over to Home Depot and see if they’ll let us throw one on the paint-shaker. Then we’ll be good to go. You see, we have to make sure that our products arrive undamaged when we ship them to NYC, Arlington Heights, Atlanta, Milwaukee, Portland or Calgary.

August 27, 2017 | Category: Blog

Are you listening? Yes I Am. “Plastics.”

Lots of graduates getting ready to enter the work-world. Lots of reels on CD and DVD coming to the CP studios. I’m looking at the 12 most recent packages. 1 trigger-case. 1 hand-made cardboard thingy. 7 regular ol’ CD jewelcases, 1 paper sleeve (!) and 2 Super Jewel Boxes, designed and assembled with our system. Here’s the coolest part. The design-work on the portfolios in the Jewelboxing packages is much better than the others. Of course, I’m probably a bit biased.

If you’re a student, email us and we’ll cut you a deal. If you’re a student in Chicago, we’ll cut you the same deal and you can swing by the studio to say hello and pick up the product and save the shipping cost too.

Why Lufkin, Denver, LA, Ottawa, NYC and Salem, I think you’re trying to seduce me.

August 27, 2017 | Category: Blog

If Barry Manilow Really Wanted a Jewelboxing 20pack, He Could Win One Easily

Last week the ad-grunts at Ad-Land were playing Trivia Chain by writing short poems that answered an advertising question with another question. The week they’re trying to win win a Jewelboxing 20pack by writing commercial jingles. Like this one.

Terry Gilliam, Terry Gilliam
He made a film about junkies
Terry Gilliam, Terry Gilliam
He also made a film about monkeys

Monkeys are cool, monkeys are cool
The talking ones steal your girlfriends.
Which beer brand, which beer brand
Made this idea pay dividends?

We love NYC, DC, Berkeley, San Francisco, Irving and Paso Robles. And we love the way MemoriesOnTV can make creating the disc as easy as Jewelboxing makes creating the package.

August 27, 2017 | Category: Blog

infrequent mail

For a quick note when features like this go live and other sporadic updates, which always include a way to win free stuff, enter your email here. We won't ever abuse the privilege. Period.