It’s the place where live TV and the internet collide. It’s all the amplification power of a live Television broadcast to 250 million homes. And its all the egalitarianism, energy and wisdom of an internet community 30k strong and growing.
As video production has fallen into the hands of the many, we’ve become accustomed to what ‘real people’ look like in the language of pigeon-video. Mediocre sound, bad lighting and sloppy editing, along with occasional um and uhs, are a watermark of authenticity.
In the last week I’ve had the same conversation 3 times about TV hosts, and their appearance/affectations. There was a time, when television hosts could not be ‘OVER’ produced. Television is an expensive medium, video was the language of kingmakers. Audiences expected glam, authority and polish from anyone on the boob tube. Now the, highly affected and ‘FAKE’ TV personalities have fallen (for myself and a number of my peers at least) into what robotics calls the uncanny valley. In case you’re unfamiliar with the concept:
“The uncanny valley is a hypothesis in the field of robotics and 3D computer animation, which holds that when human replicas look and act almost, but not perfectly, like actual human beings, it causes a response of revulsion among human observers.” -Wikipedia
The work of a great artist who exploits this phenomenon:
The sort of formulaic presentation style, so popular in television news is not as off putting as blinking robot heads, it is certainly farcical though:
Think about the people you enjoy talking to for hours on end, now compare them to people you listen to on TV. If you can, ignore the fact that these next clips are hysterical bloopers, just listen to the their tone, and affectation. If these people weren’t inside a TV would you ever listen to any of them prolonged period of time:
Several months ago, a dear friend returned from a trip to Europe. While there he had the great privilege of touring one of Churchill’s War Rooms. One evening we got into a discussion about war rooms and about strategy games…
…And so a CRAZY idea began to germinate. Some months later, six of us put aside a full weekend to focus on construction and the first game. What resulted was the epic tradition of WAR ROOM RISK.
I would love to provide thorough instructable style details here but I’ve delayed posting long enough. For now, here are the basics:
• Armies = super glue + army Men + poker Chips + spray paint
• Board = risk board digital photo + digital projector + Two 4′x5′ plywood pieces + sample paint + hinges
• Pusher Doohickeys = simple wood molding + drill + dowel Rod
• Game = liberally apply testosterone + silly hats + cocktails
Homeland Security Confirms, Al Jazeera Employee Crashes Drone into DC Federal Building amidst ‘Some of the most Secure Airspace in the World.’
**The views expressed on this site are my own and do not reflect those of my employer.**
I am that employee.
This is a story that oscillates between humorous absurdity and deadly seriousness. It’s the story of how I lost control of an unmanned aerial vehicle in some of the world’s most secure airspace and crashed, and was eventually reunited with it by an investigator from the Department of Homeland Security. I’ve written some things as quotes, but I don’t have total recall, they are synopsis of what was said. I want to recognize the 3 gentleman from the FTC security team, and the one from DHS. You were thorough, reasonable and as pleasant as possible. You are the kind of people I want protecting me, my family and my country. I can’t tell you how much I appreciate your understanding. I remember your names, but I’ve left them out of the story.
I’m a video editor and the technical guru for a hyper-interactive talk-show on Al Jazeera English, called “The Stream.” Late one Monday afternoon I found myself in an editorial meeting about a change of plans for Wednesday’s show. Normally when you hear about ‘drones’ in the news, it’s because a piece of military machinery has just killed someone on the Afghani border of Pakistan. This story, though, is about a different kind of drone and begins with my team’s decision to tell a more nuanced drone story. Our news peg: In January the FAA plans to propose new rules allowing the use of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) inside US airspace. This legislation may be a watershed event in the advance of aerial robotics. It opens the doors to using them for policework, construction, journalism, emergency response and more.
After deciding on the topic, our team split up to book guests, research and plan out the show. I went off to check the weather. In order to help illustrate the civilian use of drones, we decided to purchase a consumer grade UAV (sold at your local Brookstone Store for a cool 300 bucks) and film it in action.
The forecast was full of bad news, 36 hours of cold gray rain. Our little toy of a drone, impressive as it is, is not intended for that kind of inclement weather. I’d hoped to be able to fly it over #OccupyDC, mapping their camp as an example of how protestors are using similar devices. Unfortunately that wasn’t in the cards.
The drone arrived on Tuesday, making the day a strange mix of fun and tension. Like kids on Christmas we opened the 24 inch square box. What kind of job lets you fly a giant quad-copter around with an iPad and calls that billable hours? When I wasn’t working on Tuesday’s show I was exuberantly learning to fly the thing without crashing it, excruciatingly searching for short breaks in the forecast (Did you know that on the internet you can get likelihood of precipitation by the quarter hour now?) and running outside to battle with the 20 minutes of battery-life per charge. All the while, I was really struggling to capture video that showed the technology as more than a toy.
The UAV we’d purchased allows for the remote recording of video from two onboard cameras. The holy grail, I so fruitlessly sought, was a video clip from high above a busy street or park, just a short clip that showed the UAV’s surveillance, monitoring or mapping capabilities, its most ‘serious’ traits. Between a darkening sky, worsening weather, and finally a crash that neccistated spare-parts and repairs, I finally gave up filming and headed home for the day.
As predicted, Wednesday was another gloomy, foul-weather day. I woke early, determined to get the few key shots I needed and assemble them before 1:30pm when our rehearsals begin. I’d had my fun and practice the day before, but today had to be all business. I’d get my other duties done as quickly as possible, then I’d just need to find a window in the forecast, pick an appropriate flight spot in the neighborhood, go fly and then edit.
The location would prove to be my hamartia.
A Few Words about Our Location:
Looking out a rain soaked window, I surveyed the area. My show, “The Stream,” broadcasts live from the Newseum, at the intersection of Pennsylvania and Constitution Avenues. Directly to the North of us lies the Superior Court of DC; to the East, the Canadian Embassy; to the South, the National Gallery of Art; and to the West, a beautiful stately building… that turns out to be the US Federal Trade Commission. I summarily decided to keep my distance from all of our neighbor’s various sidewalks. In front of our building, 2 six-lane roads converge and amidst that intersection is a small park, I quickly recognized but eliminated this option as well. As someone who has occasionally tossed a frisbee I saw the dense trees and large fountain as prime spots for losing airborne objects. This left just one spot, a narrow strip of grass and cobblestones located north of the National Gallery. It has a reasonable amount of foot traffic and zero tree cover. If I could lift the drone up high enough to see pedestrians and traffic, it would just manage to illustrate the point I was going for. It would have to do.
What I’ve just described to you was my mindset when I packed up and headed out to the location. But NOW, with the power of hindsight… let me open the lens a little wider. When you look beyond the stereotypically friendly Canadians and the grandiose art museum, our neighborhood quickly becomes a lot more serious. We’re exactly 2 blocks east of the J. Edgar Hoover Building where the FBI is headquartered. We’re one block southeast of the DC metropolitan police department and we’re just a block west of the Headquarter’s of the US Marshals. Look wider still and you’d notice that we are smack in between the Capitol Building and the White House. We’re less than a mile from each. Perhaps more importantly, we’re along the SINGLE major thoroughfare connecting them. The daily motorcade traffic on our block alone should have been reason for pause. Later in the day, AJE correspondent and special guest on our show, Josh Rushing would call the air above my verdant little testing ground “some of the most restricted airspace in the entire world.”
But back to our story…
My location chosen, I just had to wait for the weather. At 11:45am, just as predicted, the chance of rain dropped to 20%. I’d have a half-hour window with only the lightest of drizzle. So I grabbed the gear, a rain slick, my colleague, Michael Hopper, and across the street we ran. Once there I put the drone level on the ground, stepped back, connected my iPad controller, hit launch, and BUZZ the UAV jumped the first 3 feet off the ground, quickly leveling out into a perfect hover. Watching the feed from the downward facing camera, I took it up, 10, 20, 30, easily 40 feet above us. I was operating the UAV while Michael filmed from below. What happened next is a bit of blur but it was set off by some combination of the following:
• There was a gust of wind
• I got greedy for footage and flew the drone too close to the limit of its 150 ft. control range
• A censor got wet and malfunctioned
• I’m a video-editor with about fifty minutes indoor practice, NOT a pilot! I have no business flying paper airplanes let alone UAVs
However it happened, I have to admit, I lost control of the device and it began to drift westward, then downward, at oncoming traffic. I took off at a sprint, desperately twisting the iPad about, trying to force the drone back skyward. This worked for a moment or two as I managed to prevent a traffic accident, not to mention creating a $300 piece of roadkill-art. As it shot into the cloudy sky, safely above the traffic… I lost control again.
And I thought… “Damn, now it’s higher and moving faster… away, straight toward that building. It’s gonna go right over it and then I’ve really lost it. How do I cross 12 lanes of traffic without taking my eyes off of this thing? It’s dropping, thank god. Run faster! Get CONTROL please!”
And… BUMP, then woosh! … The 0.93 pound foam hull collided gently with a window. For a moment it seemed to freeze in mid air. Then it dropped a few feet, down out of site, onto a 7th floor balcony. “Hurray,” I’d thought , “It’s down!” as I sprinted across 6 lanes of traffic hoping the signal would pick back up again, praying that with one last flight I could gingerly float the thing down in to my arms turning this story into a triumph. But, right up against the building, I still had no signal. Only then, as I took in this next complication and begin looking for an entrance, did see the sign. “The Federal Trade Commission.” My heart skipped a beat, as my eyes dealt with the word ‘Federal.’ I tried to blink it away. No Luck.
‘Objectivity,’ maintaining a detached almost omniscient perspective. It’s become a kind of dogmatic standard in Journalism. I don’t care much for that kind of disimpassioned story telling. It certainly has its place, but in the age of information overflow, I want to hear context, and context presupposes viewpoint. I prefer to hear subjective stories from well-informed, tolerant and unambiguous perspectives. As a journalist, I’d never purport to be objective. That said, I do strive to understand multiple perspectives, to maintain emotional distance and to be observational.
With that little styrofoam collision, things had changed for me. I crossed a line. I was no longer covering the story of civilian drone use. Nope, I’d fallen over some imperceptible lip in the story, and now I was part of it, more character than narrator. I just didn’t know that yet.
Standing in the increasing rain, I began to laugh, half from relief that the drone had stopped moving, half from nervousness that I’d never see it again. I took stock of the situation. A $300 piece of equipment that I’m responsible for had just disappeared into someone else’s property, less than an hour before I’m supposed to have it on set. I took a deep breath and did what any intelligent 12 year old would do. I marched over to the entrance, knocked on the door, puffed up my chest, apologized, and asked for my toy back.
This is another point where a lot happens. I just blew a security guard’s mind. “Hi,” I’d said “I’m Ben, I work for Al Jazeera and I just lost my surveillance drone on your rooftop. I’m sorry for the trouble, but could I have it back now, please?” While he was struggling to figure out what to do with that, some of my journalism instincts kicked in. I realize I’m standing there with Michael the intern, and two more pieces of gear: a camera, and more importantly, the iPad with the recording I’ve been trying to get for 2 days. I quickly and discreetly send him back to the office with the gear and all our recordings. My mind begins to accept the fact that this is going to be a longer process than convincing a janitor to let me up on a rooftop to retrieve my toy.
Then the waiting game begins.
I explain the situation to a another security guy, then third. I debate whether to mention the cameras on the drone. I do, but I decide to keep the off-board recording capability to myself, for the moment anyway. I show my ID to a guy behind a desk. Eventually a problem-solver emerges. He asks some questions till he understand’s the situation completely. Then he vanishes. I make small talk with the security guys at the desk, try to make light of the situation, say how embarrassed I am. More waiting, a guard mentions a YouTube video of another flying toy, sketches one he saw once. The ‘Problem-solver’ returns, I try to explain where in the building I think the UAV has landed, he vanishes again, ’talkative guard’ recounts another YouTube video.
In my head, a dark cloud is begingin to grow. “How must this look? What would I do if I were a guard? What ARE the laws on this kind of thing?” For the moment though, I’m managing to stay light, be positive, confident, a little self deprecating. Half an hour has passed since the crash, and I’m sending optimistic SMSs to the intern.
12:30 “Anyone at the office asking questions? I’d rather explain this when it’s all said and done.”
‘Talkative guard’ is chatty. He tells me about more videos, but gradually he seems to be realizing that these cool toys could be used for a more nefarious purpose. He get’s the idea of using one for surveillance, a few minutes later he says something about a stick of dynamite and duct tape. He is describing a scene from a Wiley Coyote cartoon but there is an awkward pause. I reevaluate this guys ‘rent-a-cop’ appearance, wondering if he is trying to draw me into saying something stupid. The cloud in my head grows a bit. I decide to shut up and text my colleague some more:
12:42 “Still waiting, my guess is they have it and are giving it a thorough inspection.”
12:43 “They just said probably about 15 minutes.”
I turn on my phone’s WiFi, hoping to see that someone has found the drone and carried it closer to me. No dice. And then, at just about an hour into the process, the gravity of my mistakes set in.
12:48 “New guy here with a walkie”
12:49 “They said they’re looking it over. I wouldn’t be shocked if they want to ask more questions though.”
At this point, the new guy with the walkie, Big & Silent, he moves past me to a position where he is squarely between me and the entrance. He plants himself there, facing the street. I hear snippits of conversation. I know they’ve found the drone. They’re waiting… but for what? Eventually, I realize whatever they’re waiting for it isn’t in the building. The doubts in my mind crystalize. I imagine the cavalry screeching to a stop outside, SWAT pouring through the door. My mind goes into defensive mode. I remember what some of our folks (real journalist-hero types) did in Tarhir. I type a new message into my phone. Then I copy it so that it’s 2 clicks, a ‘paste’ and ‘send’ away… it says;
“Cops here, tell (…our Boss…) what’s happening.”
I’m waiting for sirens, for someone to tell me to put my hands behind my back, my SMS fingers at the ready. However, as ‘nothing at all’ continues to happen, I manage to get hold of myself. I’m not in a repressive regime and I didn’t do anything malicious. As far as I know it wasn’t illegal either, I was under the 400 foot FAA ceiling, out of controlled airspace. Either they’re sending the cavalry or they’re not. Whether it takes me 10 minutes or 10 hours, eventually I’ll have explained this all away. Hopefully without Fox News making a big to-do out of the damn thing. I forget about the copied text. At ten till one, I call my boss and give him the run down. Now that the cat is out of the bag, I start making contingency plans for the show… calling other colleagues. “Might be late…” “Can you do this before air?”, “Can you do that before rehearsals?” My team is the best.
Still wondering how much trouble I’ve stirred up exactly, I level with the problem solver, tell him I have deadlines, ask him how long he thinks it will be, whether he’s ok with me leaving and coming back. He says he doesn’t have the authority to keep me but if I want the drone I’ll have to come back. It feels like good news. They aren’t barricading me in… but the way he says it, I realize that the whoever they’re waiting for probably would have the authority to keep me in place, and I’m guessing plenty more authority on top of that. I decide the last thing I want is for that guy to have to come hunt me down. I stay in place.
Having some information loosens me up though and I realize I’ve really gotta take a leak. I ask to use the bathroom and Big & Silent guides me or perhaps ‘escorts’ me to the door. I suppose that’s fair… plus he’s started to ask me friendly questions. Who wouldn’t be intrigued by a hovercraft from Brookstone, I practically sell him on getting one for Christmas. After using the men’s room I wash my face. Everything is gonna be just fine.
When I return to the lobby the Department of Homeland Security is there.
Entering the lobby, I see there is someone new, a big guy. He’s got several inches and maybe 80 lbs on me. He’s wearing real-cop-blue, not rent-a-cop black. Approaching the desk where the new guy is standing, my nerves start to tingle. I can see the patch on his shirt. He’s DHS, the Department of Homeland Security. I suck it up and introduce myself.
‘What am I doing flying drones into federal buildings, in the rain, at 12pm on a Wednesday,’ he wants to know. He doesn’t look amused as I explain myself, again. “The FAA is blah blah blah, so I’m doing a report about blah blah, Al Jazeera… (I wince, I’ve worked for the company since the Bush administration. So I’m used to hearing all sorts of adverse reactions to the name of my employer. I’m happy to defend Jazeera as an important member of the 4th estate to anyone who will listen, but sometimes it’s easier to just deflect. I’m trying to decide which tactic to use for this situation when I notice that, to their credit, no one has batted an eye.) Shocked, I croak out a nervous & ironic laugh, and press on talking.
The next thing out of DHS guy’s mouth is that he ‘thinks this is going to be easy.’ In fact I feel like he’s reading my mind as he explains, “I’m hoping we can treat this simply. We’re going to try and look at this as if you just happened to fly a toy onto a neighbor’s roof.”
“I am going to have to file a report, or my bosses would be angry with me but you’re lucky they sent me and not one of the crazies.”
“You have NO idea,” I think.
He actually seems sorry as he explains why it’s so suspicious. “It’s raining out, and no one flies these things in the rain. The Occupy protestors are threatening to take over buildings on K street as we speak. You ARE in a kind of sensitive area and you hit a FEDERAL building.”
“I know, I know” I wince. I’m thinking, ‘Geeze stop being so nice, you’re making it worse. You can tell me I’m a moron.’
He looks over my drivers license for a bit, writes something on a note pad and turns back to me. “Let’s go take a look at the situation,” he says. Finally, I’m starting to think, “I probably won’t see the inside of a jail cell today,” but I’m feeling more embarrassed than relieved. Employees of the building stream back in from their lunch hour and slip into the elevator. I walk in as well, flanked by 2 security guys, the DHS guy at my back. I must look like dead-man-walking, and I feel like I’ve been called to the principle’s office. We exit the elevator on the 7th floor. ” So I had the thing some 80 feet in the air,” I think.
I’m wondering how many executives have their mahogany lined offices up here on the 7th floor. I’m picturing having to walk across a fine carpet in my jeans and rain slick, nodding at some guy on the phone, whose morning I’ve ruined. I’m hoping this exec will be the scowling type and not the yelling type, but the reality is even more publicly embarrassing.
We go through two double doors, and we’re in a beautiful cafeteria with big bay windows looking out on Pennsylvania Avenue, the Capitol building looks is large and white against the gray sky in the distance. The place is chock full, but before my phalanx and I get five feet through the door, it’s so quiet you could hear the proverbial pin drop. There must have been a lot of coming and going up here in the previous hour and half. Judging by the number of eyeballs fixed on me, some of these folks have taken an extra long lunch, just to gawk at the moron who crashed a drone into their building. I’m thinking ‘face-palm,’ instead I execute an embarrassed grin lower my head and hurry across the room toward the balcony doors.
Outside, we round the corner of the building. Facing into the wind and rain finally I see the drone. It’s in one piece, if a little water-logged, it’s status lights still shining. I’m asked to stand back as the DHS agent approaches cautiously. He snaps some photos of the thing. Then one of me holding it. He tells me to smile, but my face contorts. I’m trying to comply without looking like a jack-ass. I have no idea what my expression I managed to wear. I can’t recall my facial muscles ever being in that particular arrangement. Boy would I like a copy of that for posterity.
Time has slowed for me. Every second is excruciating, but in truth things are speeding along now. I get another lecture from DHS. “You did the right thing by not running away. You’re lucky, I recognize this model. People make their own now. I know because I’ve been to a ‘Maker Faire…’ you’re lucky it’s so lightweight. We recently arrested someone who was experimenting with flying payloads into buildings, around here.” (Wow I missed that one in my research)
Then we’re headed back through the cafeteria. I’m holding the drone now, so people are even more curious. Someone asks something. I manage to squeak out, “It would make a great Christmas gift. They’re a lot of fun… until you do this.” I get a bit of a laugh from the lunch crowd. Down on the ground floor I give up my drivers license again. Mr. DHS uses a phone to run a background check. ‘Ok, I guess we’re all done here. Now I’m just going to ask that you be escorted out of the building.’
Before I know it, I’m back out in the rain, drone in hand. I don’t even think to ask whether DHS is going to hold a press conference, or anything like that. I wonder for a moment if I’d lose my job. Then I realize I have less than an hour till my own press conference (Our Show), and take off back to the office. To prep those videos for air.
I wish I could say that the whole experience gave me some insight into the “danger” or “promise” or “whatever” of “civilian crone use,” but I’m afraid all I have is an amplification of the same questions. What else can citizenry do with this impressive, perhaps transformative technology? Will the world be safe when anyone can have a flying robot? How can we protect ourselves? Mostly I think this was a good reality check. I worry a lot that society can’t keep up with technological progress, but today at least, common sense and honesty were enough.
I figured at this point that the story was over. By Friday I’d officially turned it into a drinking story. You’ll never guess what I did this week! Then 6 days after the insident, just as I’d finished writing this account, a colleague, our guest booker, stopped by my cubicle. ‘Ben, the Department of Homeland Security is downstairs to see you and I’m sorry, but I’m not joking,’ she told me. I took the call at her desk. It was Mr. DHS, my friend from the previous week. Apparently he also thought that the case was closed.
Someone else had read his report though, and he or she wasn’t entirely satisfied.
I give Mr. DHS a few more phone numbers to reach me. I walked him to the launch site, which he wanted to see first hand. We chatted a little bit more. He admitted to me that while he hadn’t raised his eyebrows when I mentioned Al Jazeera, it had raised my “threat level,” as he put it. I asked him what the worst case scenario might be. He told me, ‘More acronyms, more questions’ and gave me his card, telling me, he’s likely going to need to talk to me at least one more time.
It’s been weeks now, and so far he hasn’t been in touch. I’ve even flown domestically, but the situation hangs over me, and I was relieved when I passed through TSA with no more than the usual hassle. Then walking to my gate I passed a brookstone and sitting there in the window was another of the same mass produced toy drone and I thought entered my head. “I kind of hope they are keeping a list of people who have done suspicious things with drones, even if I’m on it.
I’m not the kind of person who is great with thank you notes, or has first class penmanship but I’ve always felt that wrapping a present was worth doing right. I take my time. I focus. I really try to make them look nice.
Sometimes though, you give a gift that can’t be wrapped up. In fact I’m a big fan of giving ‘Experiential Gifts.’ Classes, services, promises for future things. However, those SUCK**
under the tree… for two reasons. ONE they aren’t physical so you can’t play with
them right away and TWO often times their usually no frills and no fun.
**I’m saying this all as a gift GIVER; I’ve never once opened a certificate and thought this way. But, as a giver of gifts, as I said earlier, presentation is important to me.
So this year I took a bunch of time to create these fancy certificates for a couple of gifts. I got a lot of milage out of them and asmy final gift of the season I thought I’d share them with you. Hope you can make use of them next season. Click on them to access the full 300 dpi versions for printing.
P.S. I sourced the wood cuttings and fancy borders from some stuff on Google Images so thanks inter-webs.
After the long wait… I’ve finally gotten both parts of this years slideshow uploaded, and just in time for viewing with the families. Hope everyone has a fantastic holiday! See you all in 2012
I decided… while I’m at it… I may as well put them ALL in one place. Nostalgia Galore after the jump:
Someone asked me if I could explain this and whether it is general knowledge. It is to me… but I AM a hardcore nerd, so here is the skinny… There are a number of ways to do it and this is my favorite Step by Step:
First go to the YouTube video you want to download in a browser. Make sure you’re on a normal YouTube page and not a channel page… Something with a URL like this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mopFR9WEhXo
(Note: It’s ok if there is extra junk after that. The key is that it has this “v=Numbers and Letters” in there somewhere)
I just finished writing, producing and animating this callout for The Stream. I’m particularly proud of it, partly because of the short time I was able to turn it around in, but mostly because, I was able to handle such a delicate subject in a way that I feel is fresh, evocative and not at all heavy handed.
All told about 18 hours of work. The Obamas, the peace symbol hand and the crowd has already been created for previous projects.
This morning I received an email that I admit stirred me a little. The subject; “Frustrated.” The body: an eloquent ask for the American people to demand congress find a way to take bi-partisan action; a simple e-petition, but sent by the president to the American people. I don’t mind admitting that my skin tingled a bit with the possibility of a new culture of American civic engagement, of accountability delivered by the tools of our age.
What’s exciting is that Barrack has returned to the American people, to ask for our action. That he is done it in a way that recognizes the last 30 years of progress, in fact the last 5 or 10.
…both you and I can pressure them to do the right thing. We can send the message that the American people are playing by the rules and meeting their responsibilities — and it’s time for our leaders in Congress to meet theirs.
And we must hold them accountable if they don’t.
So I’m asking you to stand with me in calling on Congress to step up and take action on jobs:
What is so depressing is that Mr. Obama seems to believe, he only needs to call for our participation when he wants to be elected.
Halfway through the email I could feel it, like a sour copper taste in my mouth. This wasn’t about involving the American people in the act of governance. Most upsetting, perhaps it never was.
Indeed, I clicked download images and there it was….
And when I linked out to the petition. Confirmation. Within 2 clicks I was being asked for money for a re-election campaign.
Mr. President I want you to ask for my vote, but NOT just every 4 years.
Here is a short list for your inspiration:
Iceland Crowd Sources a Constitution
Radical Transparency -A new Approach to Management
Here is an old one:
When I pitched this story about IPV6 to The Stream I was very pleased they were interested. I was more than a little shocked when the next day the team decided to send me out to the studio to play ‘Senior Internet Corespondent.’
I think it went pretty well for a first TV appearance, thanks largely to the talents of Derrick and Ahmed who managed to guide us through a pretty esoteric topic. Too bad I didn’t have time for a haircut or shave… and next time I’m going to bringing bullet points. See everything I wish I’d said in my article after the jump.