Years ago I learned a very cool thing about Robin Williams, and I couldn’t watch a movie of his afterward without thinking of it. I never actually booked Robin Williams for an event, but I came close enough that his office sent over his rider. For those outside of the entertainment industry, a rider lists out an artist’s specific personal and technical needs for hosting them for an event, anything from bottled water and their green room to sound and lighting requirements. You can learn a lot about a person from their rider. This is where rocks bands list their requirement for green M&Ms (which is actually a surprisingly smart thing to do). This is also where a famous environmentalist requires a large gas-guzzling private jet to fly to the event city, but then requires an electric or hybrid car to take said environmentalist to the event venue when in view of the public.
When I got Robin Williams’ rider, I was very surprised by what I found. He actually had a requirement that for every single event or film he did, the company hiring him also had to hire a certain number of homeless people and put them to work. I never watched a Robin Williams movie the same way after that. I’m sure that on his own time and with his own money, he was working with these people in need, but he’d also decided to use his clout as an entertainer to make sure that production companies and event planners also learned the value of giving people a chance to work their way back. I wonder how many production companies continued the practice into their next non-Robin Williams project, as well as how many people got a chance at a job and the pride of earning an income, even temporarily, from his actions. He was a great multiplier of his impact. Let’s hope that impact lives on without him. Thanks, Robin Williams- not just for laughs, but also for a cool example.
Brian  (via boysncroptops)


Boston Wiki Meetup

(Some will say this is not the time. I disagree. This is the time when every mixed emotion needs to find voice.)

Since his arrest in January, 2011, I have known more about the events that began this spiral than I have wanted to know. Aaron consulted me as a friend and lawyer. He…


Today, many people online are mourning the death of Aaron Swartz, 26, whose spirit burned bright and was extinguished far, far too early.



The last Calvin & Hobbes cartoon: A good thing to read on the first day of the year. (h/t @natemook)


Vol. 4, No. 3


It is just one of the many notable things about “Glissando” that the writer, Katie Bellas, is in her mid-twenties. There’s none of that jitteriness and showiness so common among young writers. It’s as if Bellas has all the time in the world to peel back…


While curating away I stumbled upon this great article and presentation, and course, from Corinne Weisgerber: Teaching Students to Become Curators of Ideas: The Curation Project. Professor Weisgerber explains how curation helps makes sense of the vast amounts of information on the web. A key…


Well, if this isn’t the best thing we’ve ever seen. (via esus4)


Well, if this isn’t the best thing we’ve ever seen. (via esus4)


Van Gogh’s “Starry Night” recreated in 7,000 dominoes