Stewart Brand's Whole Earth Catalog was hugely influential on my life. I saw a copy when I was about 10 years old and it was a portal to a mind-blowing new world of possibilities. My outlook on everything changed that day. Years later, I traded subscriptions of The Whole Earth Review for bOING bOING (the zine, which Carla and I launched in 1987). Whole Earth Review was edited by Kevin Kelly, and he later hired me to work at Wired (he co-founded it with Louis Rossetto and Jane Metcalfe) as an editor, even though I had zero experience editing anything other than a zine.
Today, Kevin and I run a website called Cool Tools, which, like the Whole Earth Catalog, runs recommendations of tools written by people who use them.
The Whole Earth Catalog is 50 years old this year. Stewart Brand has continued to do interesting things over the decades, and in this video, recorded last night in San Francisco, Stewart talks about his life and interests in front of a live audience.
Many people have equated Stewart Brand to the mythical “World’s Most Interesting Man,” who was featured for years in those Dos Equis commercials. Enough people that the comparison’s a bit of a cliché. But like many clichés, there is something to it. Stewart was among the most culturally catalytic people in the turbulent years of […]
When I was a teen, I traded the first nickle ($5) bag of weed I’d ever acquired for a friend’s copy of the 1971 Whole Earth Catalog. I traded intoxication for knowledge, for “access to tools,” and I have never looked back. That 1971 catalog set me onto the DIY path and I have never […]
When I was 15 years old, I decided that I wanted to try marijuana. It took me a while, but I eventually scored some from a high schooler and went to a friend’s house to smoke it. His brother was away at college and allegedly had rolling papers in his room. We needed something to […]
From self-driving cars to Siri, we’ve already gotten a taste of what AI can do, and now this groundbreaking technology is making its way to education and revolutionizing the way we learn new languages. Mondly uses state-of-the-art speech recognition to help you speak foreign languages like a true local. Lifetime subscriptions are on sale for […]
We’ve all used Excel at some point in our careers, but chances are most of us have only scratched the surface of what this ubiquitous program can do. From automating simple tasks to presenting data through beautiful charts and PivotTables, Excel brings a ton of utility to the table that can make a huge impact […]
Traveling isn’t always the most comfortable experience, but at least you have your music to keep you company on those long flights. That is, until your chatty neighbor and that crying baby three seats over drown out your playlist. These Paww WaveSound 3 Noise-Cancelling Bluetooth Headphones block up to 20 decibels of audio, so you can […]