On our radar this week: Amazon drones taking country getaways in Cambridgeshire, 3D fashion and the latest virtual trends to hit the gaming and travel industry.

 Amazon drones go wild: Worried about your parcel delivery for Xmas peak? So is Amazon. To get an advantage in the logistics wars, the Internet shopping giant is quietly testing delivery drones in remote Cambridgeshire. A top secret location was identified as a playground for drones, as UK regulators allow flying ‘out of sight’ – still prohibited in USA. Drones are precise, but in urban areas the last few metres are likely to stay under the domain of human posties. Whilst in the wilderness of Cambs and beyond, the postman’s job is under threat.

Human helpers, but virtual games: If you’re in the US for a spot of Xmas shopping, don’t forget to check out the Microsoft stores. To let fans get their hands on VR in a safe store environment with a well-trained VR shop assistant, Minecraft fans are being offered free demos of their game, which are experienced wearing VR headset Oculus Rift (and with no appointment required). Since the installation of Oculus is still about a half-day job for a fairly knowledgeable person, and the price is steep, Microsoft is trying to create an equivalent to early cybercafés, which were used to demo the delights of early web and ftp to the newbies. Ftp is not needed anymore, but there’s always some new-fangled tech that still needs a confidence-inducing human hand to guide you through. Oculus Café anyone?

Honey, we need a (virtual) holiday: More virtual adventures are coming to travel agents near you – after Thomas Cook’s 2015 VR experience featuring Egyptian villas, now New Caledonia is moving in on the act, with an invite to experience their exotic islands via the magic of VR. Commissioned by their tourism office, this pretty unique and delightfully immersive experience of New Caledonia (about 750 miles off the coast of Australia) may not be as good as the real thing, but it does beat shuffling through old catalogues while the travel agent is trying to describe in ‘his own words’ that those far away places are worth spending your wedding money on. High street travel agents just got a new lease of life.

2016 gentlemen wear 3D bow ties: Got an invite to a posh Christmas party with an alarming bow tie hint in the ‘dress code’ section? We got your back. A guaranteed way to make an entrance is to order those lovely 3D-printed bow ties from Monocircus. The fabric bow tie is ‘so 20th century’. Available in black, red and white, it’s light and can sit on top of your shirt button. Set the style like a boss and don’t let them intimidate you into wearing something that only Humphrey Bogart looked good in!

… And 2016 ladies wear 3D bracelets: What gift do you give a girl that has everything? We’re pretty sure that Xover0 bracelets would bring a broad smile to any woman’s face. From a unique Xover0 collection, we’d pick the ones that show how future special jewellery will look. Digitally composed and hypnotically repetitive, yet its surprising patterns work well in the hands of professional 3D printers, creating a luxury unique object, worthy of the Queen herself. Not an instant gratification idea, as it takes a couple of weeks to order, but well worth the wait.


Future jobs: Retail is a-changing, so come to the Fashion Retail Academy to learn about real jobs for digital retail and to get to grips with what will be really needed.

Exhibitions: Those lucky people heading to Seoul for the Asia Fashion previews shouldn’t miss Nick Knight’s new exhibition at Daeli Museum. There are fashion photographers, and there is Nick. Kudos to the curators for a brave yet consistent selection.