The future may no longer be bright, but it is still fun, thanks to the irrepressible Poke people, who have once again made a lovely thing for Orange.
The World's First Internet Balloon Race - with prizes and games and such as the balloons fly from website to website - Iain explains it all here.
TIGS has signed up - look at the balloon raccoon floating at the bottom right of the page - and welcomes careful balloon animals.
What I love about this idea is that it pulls together buzz elements - let's make a widget! - in a way that actually makes me want to install it. As Iain points out - sure it will drive traffic, but it's also FUN.
It's naturally distributed, using the web as a gamespace. It's social and personal. It gives you a reason to maintain a conversation over time, as your balloon travels from blog to blog collecting points and that.
And there's a relevant incentive for the PAYG consumer base - a holiday for you and your mates in Ibiza.
I've always loved the idea of balloon races: letting them go and hoping some kid in another country finds them and send them back. Of course, nowadays, you could just GPS tag them and see where they all went.
Like Poke did to the bull.