On the Passing of Salinger

Plenty of reminiscence this week about the passing of J.D. Salinger, much of it in the vein of what Catcher in the Rye meant to me . . . While I hate to follow the crowd, I must admit that when I heard the news, I turned instinctively to my bedside table. There was my copy of Catcher, in full view and the only book there. It is a pocketbook edition; maroon cover, yellow title, yellowed pages. Old book smell.

Not sure how long it has been on the nightstand, the last time I read it lying in bed, or in fact when I first read this book and it (must have) influenced my whole world view.  I mean, that must be what happened, because there it is, a fundamental piece of my personal mythology and moral landscape, and the volume I turn to when I need a little inspiration before falling asleep.

Categorized as General

Final Cut Server: Imagining the Possibilities

For a slightly different perspective on Apple’s Final Cut Server software, check out this article I wrote for “Creative Solutions.”

Here is a taste:

“What is the real potential of the intersection of data processing and digital media? How can Final Cut Server lead to new ways of thinking about media production and consumption? What can we make with this tool that can help communicate and understand the world in deeper and more meaningful ways?”

GV Expo Preso Notes

Thanks to everyone who came out to my talk, “Video Compression for a Good User Experience” at GV Expo.

As promised (both in person and on Facebook), I have posted my speaker notes:


Keynote 43MB

Pirate Bay Goes to Jail

So, everyone seems to agree that the Pirate Bay case is fascinating (well, I don’t know about “everyone” really, but me and some other people anyway) but what I am wondering if anyone has real positions on the issue(s)?

I’ll briefly relate my own experience: my book was pirated as PDF, almost certainly through a security breach at the publisher. After being notified, the publisher’s attorneys pursued notice and takedown on all of the sites where the bootleg was available. All of the sites complied with the request EXCEPT for Pirate Bay, who wrote back basically to say “Fuck You, we pride ourselves in flaunting your laws.”

Now generally, I am very sympathetic to the idea that information wants to be free, a proponent of liberal application of fair use, and fan of the digital frontier organization, open source software and etc. However, there ought to be basic protection of intellectual property at the purest level (for instance in the case of my publisher and Pirate Bay). Right?

I mean, do people agree that Pirate Bay is in some sense in the wrong, and should (in terms of civil society) be held accountable for their actions? Or, do people have radically different views than mine?

To be honest, I struggle with these questions, but come on, when someone steals your stuff, and you ask them nicely to stop distributing for free (or to profit from ad revenues) and they say fuck you – shouldn’t the authorities take them to task?

Categorized as General