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The New Disruptors

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The New Disruptors tells stories that provide practical inspiration about the way that creative people and producers connect with audiences to perform, cajole, convince, sell, and interact using new methods. A new episode every Thursday. Free downloads and streaming.

The New Disruptors tells stories that provide practical inspiration about the way that creative people and producers connect with audiences to perform, cajole, convince, sell, and interact using new methods. A new episode every Thursday. Free downloads and streaming.
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The New Disruptors tells stories that provide practical inspiration about the way that creative people and producers connect with audiences to perform, cajole, convince, sell, and interact using new methods. A new episode every Thursday. Free downloads and streaming.




93: Hugs and Kisses Goodbye: Live from XOXO 2014 (The New Disruptors)

Jen Bekman, Zoë Salditch, and Mike Merrill were our guests live on stage at the XOXO 2014 festival in Portland, Oregon, as part of the Story evening that also featured Hrishikesh Hirway's Song Exploder, featuring a song by The Thermals; John Roderick (The Long Winters) interviewing Chelsea Cain; and Harmontown with Dino Stamatopoulos.Jen Bekman founded 20x200 in 2007 to provide art at accessible prices. She spoke about her in work in 2012 at XOXO. Then she had a terrible, no good, very bad...


91: Plug Me In with Mara Zepeda (The New Disruptors)

Mara Zepeda is the co-founder and CEO of Switchboard, a site that lets you ask for what you need and offer what you have within a trusted community. It's a way to more efficiently interconnect generosity, and is sometimes described as Craigslist without the creeps. I'm used to reading personal histories that have windy roads, but Mara's can't be summarized. Suffice it to say that she's a writer, calligrapher, entrepreneur, and student of knowledge who has worked as a reporter and teacher....


76: Freelance To Be You and Me with Katie Lane (The New Disruptors)

Katie Lane is an attorney who writes a blog called Work Made for Hire. She advises creative freelancers and artists on how to protect their rights and get paid fairly for their work. She recently took the plunge herself, going full-time as a self-employed person. We'll talk about what led her into this specialized career and the kinds of things that people who want to or are pursuing work on their own should consider. We take a brief, deep dive into copyright, too. Sponsors & patrons This...


74: Threes A Magic Number with Greg Wohlwend (The New Disruptors)

Greg Wohlwend developed the popular game Threes with his colleague Asher Vollmer. Greg is a games illustrator and designer who was part of teams that made Hundreds, Gasketball, Solipskier, and Ridiculous Fishing. Threes is his breakout game —and has inspired lots of admiration, frustration, and imitation. He and I talk in this episode about the joy of success, the burden of being independent, and the problems with parasites. Sponsors & Patrons This podcast is made possible through the...


70: Puzzling Evidence with Chris Yates (The New Disruptors)

Chris Yates is a polymath. A sculptor, artist, woodworker, cartoonist, entrepreneur, dog-kennel assembler, musician, and more. He's best known now for his handmade jigsaw puzzles. He's on the show to talk about his zigzag path to making a niche for himself. Sponsors New Relic helps everyone's software work better, and if you’re in any business today, you’re in the software business. Software powers our apps, runs our databases, manages our accounts, and runs ecommerce sites and email...


67: Agile Was I Ere I Saw Ada with Danielle Hulton (The New Disruptors)

Danielle Hulton of Ada's Technical Books not only opened a bookstore in Seattle in 2010, but recently dramatically expanded the size of the shop by moving to a new space. What led her to leap where others feared to tread, and how do you keep a bookstore current when ebooks seem to sucking readers away? Expertise, instant availability, and many lines of business are all part of the process. This episode is sponsored by: Mailchimp helps more than five million people and businesses around the...


64: Sisters Are Doin’ It for Themselves with The Doubleclicks (The New Disr

Angela and Aubrey Webber are the musical group The Doubleclicks, bringing geeky music to nerdy folk. The sisters never intended to form a band, but when Aubrey joined her sister Angela in Portland a few years ago, her cello coupled with Angela's singing caused enough of a stir for them to join forces and write songs about Dungeons & Dungeons, the Curiosity rover, and not dissing the geek girl. We talk about all this and their absurdly successful Kickstarter campaign that just closed....


63: Failing Upward with Greg Knauss (The New Disruptors)

Greg Knauss is an independent software developer who created Romantimatic, a reminder program for absent-minded sweethearts. You may know him from the early 2000s: from and Metababy and Rainy Day Fun and Games for Toddler and Total Bastard, a collection of stories he promoted on what was arguably the first digital book tour. Then for a decade he toiled behind the scenes until he went out on his own. We'll talk today about his expectations, the reality, and fear of failing--and of...


61: Attention To Convention With Matt Conn (The New Disruptors)

Matt Conn wanted to organize a safe event for gaymers —that's people who game and are part of the LGBTQ continuum. The GaymerX event is meant to be inclusive of all people, but especially those harassed, marginalized, or ridiculed in mainstream gaming. The first GaymerX took place August 2013; the next happens in July. We talk about what it's like to help a community be part of birthing a new convention. This episode is sponsored by: Over 2,000 high-quality and engaging video...


60: Backerkit to the Future with Maxwell Salzberg (The New Disruptors)

Maxwell Salzberg of BackerKit knows what it's like to have a lot of people giving him money who want something in return: he and three colleagues credited the Diaspora project, one of Kickstarter's early blockbusters. He co-founded BackerKit with Rosanna Yau to help people with the problem of managing crowdfunding backers' responses and expectations. This episode is sponsored by Media Temple: Web hosting for artists, designers, and Web developers since 1998. Media Temple hosts beautiful...


59: Shell Game with Dan Shapiro (The New Disruptors)

Dan Shapiro created the game Robot Turtles out of scissors, clip art, and a printer to offer asymmetric play: kids and adults can play together and both can enjoy the experience. He brought it to Kickstarter to sell a few hundred copies, and wound selling over 25,000. In his workshop, Dan explains how the game developed, the Kickstarter proceeded, and how he's fulfilling it. This episode is sponsored by Media Temple, where New Disruptors listeners receive 25% off their first month of...


58: Gaze Deeply Into My Crowdfunding Navel with Guest Glenn Fleishman (The

Guest host Jason Snell talks to regular host Glenn Fleishman about Glenn's recent Kickstarter campaign to fund a book of non-fiction articles from The Magazine. Jason, host of The Incomparable and an editorial director at a major magazine firm, quizzes Glenn about failure, success, fulfillment (product and otherwise), and the reason we solicit funds from our fans, friends, family, and strangers. This episode is sponsored by Media Temple: Web hosting for artists, designers, and Web...


57: Through A Glass Brightly With Abhi Lokesh (The New Disruptors)

Take a picture and put it under glass, but not quite the way you think. The folks at Fracture have a built a business that connects several different technologies into one new way to make large-format photos printed on glass suitable for hanging. Today I talk to Abhi Lokesh, one of Fracture's founders, about the journey from a small village in Africa to a whizz-bang printing and distribution company. This episode is sponsored by Media Temple: Web hosting for artists, designers, and Web...


56: Doubling Down With Amelia Greenhall (The New Disruptors)

Double Union is a new community workshop in San Francisco designed for women, and intended to provide a comfortable, welcoming environment to make things. In this podcast, I visit the pre-renovation space with Amelia Greenhall, one of the people who helped create the non-profit organization. She explains why Double Union is necessary, and the path that led to it and others like it. This episode is sponsored by Media Temple, where a Grid plan gives you 100 Web sites, 100 GB of storage, and...


55: The Zine Machine Lives Boing Boing At XOXO (The New Disruptors)

In September 2013, I interviewed at the XOXO conference and festival the four lead editors of Boing Boing, an online, thriving descendent of zine culture that is one of the most popular blogs on the Internet. For the day after Christmas, it seems appropriate to celebrate generosity and gift culture with Mark Frauenfelder, David Pescovitz, Cory Doctorow, and Xeni Jardin. As with all the sessions at XOXO, the presentation is Creative Commons licensed, and I separately obtained permission...


54: Wait a Cotton-Picking Minute With Jay Fanelli And Nathan Peretic (The N

Jay Fanelli and Nathan Peretic know how to go it on their own. They've done it not just once, not just twice, but now three times. They formed the interactive-services company Full Stop Interactive, out of which United Pixelworkers was formed, a company that produces fine wearable merchandise. And United Pixelworkers gave birth to Cotton Bureau, a site that uses crowdfunding to pick which shirts should get printed. Now they're doubling down and focusing entirely on the T-shirt and...


53: The Year of Living Disruptively with Guests from Early Episodes (The Ne

The New Disruptors launched on December 5, 2012. I wanted to talk to people making stuff, creating art, or helping others get their work out there. The show is now at episode 53, and it's been a delightful year. I wanted to look back at early guests, and was able to get the folks who appeared on the first four episodes to chat briefly about what happened next. I talk in this show with Lisanne Pajot and James Swirksy, Indie Game: The Movie; Chris Anderson, then Wired and now 3DRobotics; Tony...


52: Girls Just Want To Code Apps with Jean MacDonald (The New Disruptors)

Jean MacDonald was formerly best known for her role as a software marketing and public-relations guru for a major Macintosh software developer, but her work to create App Camp for Girls has eclipsed that. Jean and her colleagues raised over $100,000 on Indiegogo to fund an initial two sessions of a week each in her hometown of Portland, Oregon, and the next step is national. Jean talks about the particular challenges of bootstrapping a non-profit from zero through crowdfunding, and the...


51: I Am Super Mann, And I Can Sing Anything With Jonathan Mann (The New Di

Since January 2009, Jonathan Mann has posted a song every day. Not five days a week: seven days a week. There is no rest for the wickedly productive. While he makes his living by writing and performing bespoke songs for organizations, Jonathan never stops creating for himself — and his fans.


50: The Labors Of Job With Alli Dryer And Jenni Leder (The New Disruptors)

This podcast often emphasizes going it alone. But what if you could achieve your own dreams of continuous learning and creative expression while also having full-time jobs and getting that mythical thing, a regular paycheck? I talk with Alli Dryer and Jenni Leder, user interface/user experience (UI/UX) designers, who changed their lives —and those of their husbands — to bring their lives closer to what they want within the structure of employment. We talk about that most scary of words to...


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