Dave Winer, 56, is a software developer and editor of the Scripting News weblog. He pioneered the development of weblogs, syndication (RSS), podcasting, outlining, and web content management software; former contributing editor at Wired Magazine, research fellow at Harvard Law School and NYU, entrepreneur, and investor in web media companies. A native New Yorker, he received a Master's in Computer Science from the University of Wisconsin, a Bachelor's in Mathematics from Tulane University and currently lives in New York City.
"The protoblogger." - NY Times.
"The father of modern-day content distribution." - PC World.
"Dave was in a hurry. He had big ideas." -- Harvard.
"Dave Winer is one of the most important figures in the evolution of online media." -- Nieman Journalism Lab.
10 inventors of Internet technologies you may not have heard of. -- Royal Pingdom.
One of BusinessWeek's 25 Most Influential People on the Web.
"Helped popularize blogging, podcasting and RSS." - Time.
"The father of blogging and RSS." - BBC.
"RSS was born in 1997 out of the confluence of Dave Winer's 'Really Simple Syndication' technology, used to push out blog updates, and Netscape's 'Rich Site Summary', which allowed users to create custom Netscape home pages with regularly updated data flows." - Tim O'Reilly.
8/2/11: Who I Am.
scriptingnews2mail at gmail dot com.
My 40 most-recent links, ranked by number of clicks.
FYI: You're soaking in it. :-)
Mathew Ingram asks on GigaOM if we should be as worried about CISPA as we were about SOPA?
I say that's not a good question -- because our response to SOPA was inadequate and wrong, and proves that Internet that's supposed to be so responsive to threats, is as centrally controlled as Viacom, Disney, Fox, Apple, Google etc. Instead of being controlled by a few media and tech moguls it's controlled by Jimmy Wales. So he did what MSG did when they didn't like the terms that Time-Warner was offering. Wales got what he wanted this time, but I don't think it's going to work again. That bullet, once fired, can't be fired again. And sooner or later someone is going to ask the question, if the Internet is a chaotic cacophony of the free and brave, why is it that one person can turn off Wikipedia?
The tech and media moguls might ask aren't you just like us? And the answer is yes. We are just like you.
What had to happen, and what still has to happen, is as unlikely as the people of the earth waking up one day and realizing that unless we all radically reduce our production of carbon and also stop having so many children, our species is looking at some really hard times, if not extinction. The Republicans are worried about Social Security running out of money in 40 years. We might run out of oxygen before then.
There won't be a mass uprising in defense of freedom on the net. Some people will get book contracts, and we'll probably be watching Wolf Blitzer on Twitter and/or Facebook before too long.
We didn't have much of a wad to shoot, but it's shot. It would have been so much more impressive if we made sure Wikipedia was functioning 24-by-7, without interruption, no matter what the government did.
Harry Truman said I don't give em hell. I tell the truth and they think it's hell.
Here's a day I learned a little truth, about myself.
I was sitting in my car in San Francisco on a beautiful morning. I had just spent the night with a loving woman who took very good care of me. She had hopped out of the car to get us some coffee. We were driving up to Marin for the morning to go hiking on Mount Tam, and then to have some lunch and drink and more love-making. But I wasn't feeling happy. My mind drifted and I daydreamed. Then saw a couple walking hand in hand and the thought popped into my head, involuntarily, that it would be nice to be them. I saw another couple and thought the same thing. Then a moment of self-truth-telling. I realized how foolish this desire was. I remembered that moment.
I didn't learn to think those things about myself until I was in my early 40s, btw. Before that pain and happiness would come and go without me understanding how independent these feelings were from events.
When people ask why you feel blue, if you pile up enough of these experiences you realize there is no reason. It's not about reason. Feelings come from somewhere else.
So then the big question -- what does it all mean? Why are we here. What's after death. And fear of all that. It's always waiting for you when your mind pauses. So you try not to pause! But eventually you do have to stop.
Lately I've been thinking that fear of death, like almost everything else about us, comes from the natural selection process. That animals that had no natural predators might not fear death at all. But our evolution must have selected people who were very scared of death. Because people who weren't thinking about it night and day and always preparing for it didn't procreate as widely as those who were obsessed. So fear of death might just have to do with genetics.
I've heard that once you give up, when your body knows there's no hope, you relax about it. I don't know if it's true. But then I know it might be a feeling, and you can't think your way to the answer, as was previously demonstrated.
Smartest thing I've heard today is that we ought to be looking for more planets that can support life. Because this one is heading off a cliff. But I have a hard time really feeling that. You know. I'm more concerned with my end, than the end of the planet. I guess I have good genes!