As promised by Jeremy Frommer, the financier who has assembled the largest private collection of Bob Guccione, Omni, Penthouse, and related stuff (a good portion of which is for sale), Omni Reboot is live. Edited by Claire Evans, a writer and editor (and part of the band YACHT), Reboot is starting life as a blog, but Claire tells us she has great hopes for expanding as time progresses.
But what a blog! Friends of Boing Boing Rudy Rucker and Bruce Sterling contributed fiction to the launch: "I Arise Again" and "The Landline," respectively. The premier also sports a feature on Ben Bova, one of the great science-fiction editors and writers, and a founding editor at Omni; and about what was learned in the "failure" of Biosphere 2.
Claire, also a friend of BB, writes in her introductory editor's note: "We will never be able to compete with your nostalgia." Instead, they're using our nostalgia as a scaffolding by which we will climb to the stars.
The "Code Monkey Saves World" project is about to stretch itself into the world of kickass princesses. Troubadour Jonathan Coulton and filmmaker and comics writer Greg Pak teamed up a few weeks ago to launch a crowdfunding effort to raise $39,000 to create a series of comic books based on the villains and other characters from Coulton's songs. On their way to blow past $200,000 in pledges, the dynamic duo added more pages to the future comics, promised JoCo would record an album of newly recorded acoustic versions of the songs referenced in the comics, and provided other rewards, most of which existing backers get added without having to increase their pledge.
Pak and Coulton have at least one more rabbit to pull out of their jointly worn hat: a children's book created from "The Princess Who Saved Herself," the title of which explains the song. Read the rest
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Jonathan Coulton and Greg Pak launch a crowdfunding campaign to create a series of comic books based on characters from Coulton’s songsRead the rest
Amoeba Records’ new out-of-print music service proves a deep knowledge of the industry it cherishes. But the much-loved music store’s archive of obscure classics is also a potential time bomb, ticking away inside a bizarre legal tangle that few in the business are inclined to unravel.Read the rest
I don't have more to say about Aaron Swartz's death; I knew him a little, but felt his loss keenly. As coverage appeared, however, I found myself concerned about his legacy. Aaron did so much in such a short period of time, but several of his accomplishments have been glossed over in a way that distorts his contributions. Read the rest
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The Library of Congress occupies three massive and ornate buildings in the center of Washington, D.C. But those edifices house just part of the collection, which spans hundreds of miles of shelves across many less-interesting buildings, and extends to media beyond books.
To find the heart of the nation's audiovisual memory, I took a lovely drive in October along ever smaller highways heading southwest from Washington, D.C., to Culpeper, Virginia, where sound recordings, films, and video reside in temperature-controlled vaults beneath Mount Pony.
Passing historical sites like Manassas (where Bull Run is located) , and watching the landscape shift rapidly from government buildings and commercial high rises to strip malls to farms and antique stores, it felt as if I traveled through time as well as distance on the 75-mile trip.
But the library's Culpeper facility is firmly rooted in the 21st century, and its existence owes much to the latter half of the 20th. While the focus is on what's buried inside, it's hard to ignore the beauty of the setting, its landscaping, and the building's architecture; it's the best use of concrete that I've ever seen in interior design, and I say that completely unironically.
A spam filter almost scotched my chance to be on television. I was scanning through the usual detritus of offers in July 2011 to enhance body parts and transfer large sums of money from people in distant lands, and spotted this subject line: “Jeopardy! Contestant Audition in Seattle”Read the rest
Andrea Seabrook had a brilliant career at National Public Radio (NPR), and spent the last several years covering Congress in Washington, D.C. If you listen to NPR, you know her voice, and likely perked up when the anchors threw it over to her to give insight into the latest federal nonsense. Seabrook recently walked away from that rare thing, a stable job in public radio doing precisely what she loves, to start a podcast called DecodeDC hosted by the new Mule Radio Syndicate. She has three episodes of truthtelling in the can so far.
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Kickstarter updated its policies for product design today: a move that will cost the firm money but relieve tension caused by fast promises and slow delivery.Read the rest
I have fallen in love with a building, hundreds of people, a MakerBot, a portable toilet trailer, food trucks, and two men each named Andy. Is it possible to fall in love with a conference? If so, I have. The organizers named the conference XOXO for hugs and kisses. This was presented without hipster irony or marketing-speak. They meant it. They delivered.Read the rest