February 22

Thanks to my association with the Creative Commons (a gift that amazingly keeps on giving) I am invited to the cocktail party celebrating the Wired Rave Awards. My friend Chris and I head out there on Caltrain. There are quite a few cool nominees, although few appear to attend, but amazingly a few people recognize me and I get the pleasure of explaining who they are to Chris. We apparently missed seeing Lessig. Also missed: Blake Ross, who was nominated twice but lost both to Halo 2 and Howard Stern, respectively. Losing to Howard Stern! You almost feel sorry for the guy.

I feel like I should do more networking or something, but what’s the point? Trying to scream inane chit-chat over incredibly loud music just really isn’t that fun. And I’m looking for less fame and responsibilities, not more. Still, you feel lame just standing around in a crowd of what’s presumably the elite. Although Chris says they better not be the elite; they seem pretty uninteresting to him. Do you really want to join the cocktail parties of the high society?

mjd famously said:

Wired magazine recently asked me to write a short article explaining how [a Perl program] worked. Wired being what it is, I knew that no matter how little informative content I actually included, it would be too much—-they would assiduously remove all actual information from my article, and the result would be a piece which would give the reader a warm fealing of having understood, but without actually imparting anything else of value. That’s what Wired is about: The illusion of knowledge without any of the difficult bits. Sure enough, that is what happened.

So perhaps it’s not surprising that a Wired party would be aimed at much the same audience: people who want the illusion of hanging out with the hackers whose minds power Silicon Valley, without having to subject themselves to their distasteful odors. The only real hacker I saw at the party was Bram Cohen (BitTorrent) and he was probably only invited because he was nominated last year.

So most of the time Chris and I just sort of walk around and try to talk over the loud music. Eventually, Danger Mouse (The Grey Album) performs live and then the stage clears and the lights go dark as The Polyphonic Spree enters in their resplendent costumed glory. They’re really quite an amazing band; Chris and I marvel at just how much fun they seem to be having and my face lights up when I just jump up and down in the air with them. They even have a theremin player. It’s really wonderful. Chris says it’s way more fun than any normal concert. I want to run out and buy their CD.

posted March 26, 2005 04:39 PM (Education) (2 comments) #


The Truth About Maryland
Stanford: Mr. Unincredible
Lessons in Capitalism #1: Division of Labor
Stanford: Out at the Movies
Stanford: Form Without Content
Stanford: A Wired Rave
David M. Clark on Cognitive Therapy
Stanford: Meeting the President
Stanford: Caught Red-Handed
Lessons in Capitalism #2: Management
Jeff Hawkins Update


So, did you?

posted by Robert Brook at March 31, 2005 08:39 AM #

Yeah, I bought both albums (electronically, tho). They’re great!

posted by Aaron Swartz at March 31, 2005 10:34 AM #

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