Weekend Project: The Hero Awards

Thursday, June 16, 2011

A while back I was wasting time on YouTube when I got derailed, out of nowhere, by a thread of random hero and rescue videos. You know: moments of true-blue, real-life heroism preserved for posterity on crappy surveillance feeds or stuttery iPhone captures. After six hours of watching people rush into burning buildings and leap into subway trenches, I decided a website was called for. Two days, one Wordpress install, and a couple hundred lines of PHP later, The Hero Awards was born.

The Hero Awards

I haven't had time to polish it, but the website is basically a glorified heroism video playlist with some over-the-top technical analysis, Google Maps, and Chuck Norris voting widgets thrown in for good measure. The logic behind the last was straightforward: our research indicated that most users, being lazy, aren't inclined to vote. But further research revealed that Chuck Norris doesn't need any stinkin' votes. Chuck Norris simply flexes his biceps, causing you to collapse into the fetal position, sobbing like a two year old. Then he TAKES your vote. And your woman. And your dog.

But I digress.

While light years behind web stacks like ASP.NET MVC or Rails, nothing beats Wordpress/PHP for cranking out quick and dirty websites. You can point-and-click your way to some pretty sophisticated setups on Wordpress without knowing how to code your way out of a paper bag. And if you can code, Wordpress is your playground: edit anything you want, but it's on you to make sure you don't break your plugins, tangle your loops, etc. It's on you to know what you're doing.

...just like Chuck Norris.

Anyway, Lenny Skutnik's famous bellyflop into the icy waters of the Potomac, the Tank Man's stand against a column of Type 59 tanks in Tiananmen, Wesley Autrey's lifesaving tackle-and-pin move in a New York subway trench: it's all there. As a buddy of mine put it, THA is "sort of like an anti-Fail Blog". Well, sure. An anti-Fail Blog with 1/100000th the audience of Fail Blog, but an anti-Fail Blog nonetheless.

And it's only been a few days, but as our MediaTemple webservers haven't been bombarded into molten slag by a meteor storm of pure unbridled rage, we can only conclude that Chuck, wherever he is, approves. Here's to hoping you do, too.

Tags: The Hero Awards, Wordpress

10 comment(s)

Chuck Norris doesn't approve of anyone or anything. He just exists and we bask in the warmth of his power.

Fear of spiders is arachnophobia, fear of closed spaces is claustrophobia, fear of Chuck Norris is called Logic.

No poker hero vids available? Looks good. Hope it works. My site is similar, but I have lost interest. viralnomore.com

Sweet! Love the site Jame

Good idea that hasn't been executed well in the past, IMO. FailBlog is about schadenfreude but also humor. Fails = funny. Heroics = not so much. Without humor, heroism (I should say the exposition of heroism) is just sanctimony. I think you saw this and correctly decided to leverage the power of Chuck.

My two cents---

1- The Chuck Norris voting widgets are hilarious but oblique. How many of your users are going to be aware of Chuck Norris Facts?

2- You could crowdsource the submissions per Failblog. I saw the Nominate link but you could do something more intuitive and streamlined. Give people credit if their submissions are chosen, etc.

I will post a link to this page on your site. I am sure your visitors will find that very useful informations.

Good idea that hasn't been executed well in the past, IMO.

Freshersworld.. I will post a link to this page on your site. I am sure your visitors will find that very useful informations.

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