Cybertainment: Website simulates coffee shop ambiance

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Freelancers and independent contractors all know about the coffee shop office -- the place where they can go to set up a laptop and do their work and get out of the house.

The new website Coffitivity creates a virtual Starbucks wherever there's an Internet connection.

According to the site, working in total silence or in noisy places stifles creativity and focus. But the quiet background noise of a coffee shop -- with conversations and the sound of cups clinking -- is the perfect background noise.

Coffitivity generates that same ambient noise and is designed for people in loud and busy workplaces.

The site is still in beta stage. An iOS Mac app is in the works.

Speaking of coffee shop workplaces, the comedy website CollegeHumor has produced a feature-length film that's set in one.

Written and directed by Brad Copeland ("Arrested Development," "My Name Is Earl"), "Coffee Town" was released directly to online platforms such as iTunes and Amazon and is doing well: Within days of its premiere, it was among the top iTunes movie downloads.

"Coffee Town" is the story of a website manager, played by Glenn Howerton of "It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia," who uses a coffee shop as his work space. He finds out that there are plans to turn it into a bistro and enlists the help of two buddies, played by Steve Little and Ben Schwartz, to try to preserve his hangout.

The low-budget film was marketed through social media and the CollegeHumor site. If it succeeds, it could generate new revenue streams for CollegeHumor.

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Adrian McCoy: or 412-263-1865.


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