I woke up at noon today and slotted Nirvana into the drive (at least these multimedia PCs are good for something), started the first pot of coffee and checked the mail. Zounds. The subs are pouring in from all over. I wasn't sure what to expect when I put out what I described to a friend this morning as my "ephemeral self-indulgent and frivolous Entropy Gradient Reversals offer."
I've been blown away by the response. Thanks to all of you of the Noise-as-Found-Signal School. Speaking of which, that email I looped around a couple days ago -- currently travelling far beyond its initial targets of opportunity -- is now available for posterity.
As they say at the end of the Mystery Science Theater 3000 credits: Keep Circulating the Tapes!
In my more respectable days (a little retrospective reinvention), I used to regularly appear in the pages of Major Business Publications, pontificating about All Things Internet. But I gotta tell you, this is much more fun. Every one-line message that hits Eudora saying "I Subscribe to Entropy" is a genuine rush. Another chance to lob these pathetic blows against the empire a little further afield. Or maybe just a chance to reinforce the already widespread suspicion that the empire blows.
Thanx...this better be cool...("...here we are now -- entertain us..." Kurt Cobain is singing at the moment.)
Great expectations already, and I was trying to keep them nice and low. Anybody who really knows me knows I disapprove of aggressive competitiveness and all forms of personal confrontation. Just a regular guy. How cool is that? Of course, we will be looking deeply into various forms of Machiavellian corporate politics, as well as offering the latest knife-fighting tips for Getting Ahead in The Wired 90's.
As a footnote to a footnote, I once called Cobain a genius in no less august a publication than The Internet Society's own OnTheInternet, and it evidently upset some people pretty badly. So much for some people.
Look, let me level with you from Jump Street. I'm gonna be as hip as I'm able, but I may lapse into the occasional serious examination of things that these days seem to attract an attention I used to reserve for genuinely dangerous vices. Things like "e-commerce" and all that shifty little buzzword entails. And like the slippage in traditional power relations this medium is inescapably precipitating.
Sad really. About having to renounce the vices, I mean.
Meanwhile, back at the mail bag, another correspondent quotes Andre Gide:
Believe those who are seeking the truth; doubt those who find it.With respect to the second part, you're in good hands, I can assure you with some confidence. But I also have to say from the outset that this type of highbrow reference is going to be frowned on here. Instead, we plan to favor a more "with-it" style befitting Today's Web.
Clean up your act! Wipe that smile off your face! We have no past, no colors, no annoying sense of confusion. Welcome to the Future.
I'm also checking out a very kind offer to run this list off a real listserver. That's clearly going to be necessary as we approach the inevitable IPO and go into our "quiet period" -- this is when you hope you've created enough hysteria in the marketplace that people will be buzzing about you even when the SEC mandates that you can't hype yourself. Kind of an enforced humility. But we won't hit our two-million milestone for at least another quarter.
Until then, I'm running this list off some nifty shareware called eBase/Mailer from Braintree. I even registered it, which seemed only fair after chewing up at least a dozen hours of developer Kenneth Weiss's time (trying to figure out some weirdball anomaly in my system). When you unsubscribe to EGR in abject disgust and decide to start your own newsletter in retaliation, you could do a lot worse than eBase. In fact, it's kind of hard to do better; I couldn't find another PC package that came close.
Even if all you want to do is spam your least favorite government "Representatives," eBase includes a complete email database of the 104th Congress. I'm seriously thinking of making them all Charter Subscribers to EGR. heh.
Anyway, just wanted to say hello and welcome, plus shake down this new software. If you notice anything weird -- aside from the content that is -- do let me know.
Some of you have asked whether I'm still at IBM. Absolutely. Of course, the views expressed here do not necessarily reflect those of the organization as a whole. Just in case you wondered.
This is the greatest electronic newsletter ever created. If you think so too, it's free. If you don't think so, the annual subscription rate is $1000. Either way, to subscribe send email to firstname.lastname@example.org saying simply subscribe on a single line in the BODY of the message. Or, go to http://www.rageboy.com/sub-up.html where it will tell you to do the same thing. No Animals Will Be Harmed in the Making of This Subscription.
god, do I dare hit the send key? I mean, this is pretty rough, pretty stream-of-consciousness stuff. Maybe I should rethink this whole thing...
Entropy Gradient Reversals CopyLeft Christopher Locke email@example.com http://www.rageboy.com
"reality leaves a lot to the imagination..." John Lennon