Remember Flip Books?
Flippies has been attracting some big name clients,
such as Puma and Capitol Records.
If not, it's no surprise. Originally patented in 1882 and popularized as Cracker Jack prizes in the early 1900s, the little thumb-triggered animation booklets have been off the public radar for decades. A new firm called Flippies aims to change that by transforming flip books from outdated toys to modern promotional tools. The company has come up with a process that produces strikingly vivid flip sequences from live-action or animated footage, allowing clients to create a small, instantly viewable video with a built-in play element. The resulting 64-page booklets feature color graphics, high-quality paper stock, and double-sided pages (for two separate sequences), and are about the size of a pack of playing cards. Several big-name clients have already taken notice, including Puma (its video shows a cyclist unlocking his bike and pedaling off) and Capitol Records (it made an "asset shaking" promo for the rapper Ebony Eyez). It's enough to reconfigure your concept of "digital" video — and a telling reminder that interactive media existed long before the Internet.
A version of this article appeared in the September 2005 issue of Fast Company magazine.