Project of the Day — Season 4 of Roman Mars’ award-winning radio show 99% Invisible
No sleep ‘til Monday.
Beginning right now, the duo is giving Kickstarter backers the ultimate reward: Over two days of pure KATG. Featuring special guests from across the comedy spectrum, the show will be live until 10pm Monday night.
Strangers is a Kickstarter-funded public radio podcast, created by Lea Thau for KCRW.
After successfully raising a budget for Season Two last month, Thau has been hard at work finalizing the new episodes.
The first one just launched, featuring legendary voice actor Bill Ratner, primal scream therapy, tragedy, Hollywood, and redemption. Deinitely something to shout about. Take a listen…
State of the Re:Union is an award-winning public radio show that shares the stories of everyday people doing extraordinary things.
Creator Al Letson has traveled from the Mississippi River to Wyoming, and covered everything from a network of Baltimore-based veterans to a super passionate Superman fan — all in an effort to explore the little ways that individuals and communities can make a major impact.
Today, it’s making a major impact as our Project of the Day.
The hugely inventive podcast 99% Invisible treats the design of everyday things like a forensic science. In each episode, creator and host Roman Mars highlights some nearly invisible design process that you had no idea was incredibly interesting and then tells you why it is. The show is on our must-listen playlist, and season three is our Kickstarter of the Week.
—Great piece about the independent radio show/podcast 99% Invisible on WIRED today. Check it out, then dig into the show with this episode, already an office favorite: The Accidental Music of Imperfect Escalators.
One of my favorite newsletters to actually read, former KSR project creators Triple Canopy offer "an online magazine, workspace, and platform for editorial and curatorial activities." Featuring the work of writers, artists, and researchers, the non-profit organization “facilitates projects that engage the Internet’s specific characteristics as a public forum and as a medium, one with its own evolving practices of reading and viewing, economies of attention, and modes of interaction.” Their “expanded field of publication” includes fascinating literary journalism in a variety of forms.
Thanks to their last newsletter I just listened to James Hoff’s "Love Bombing" podcast, a “noncomprehensive mix of religious, cult, and armed-revolutionary songs that artist James Hoff first began compiling in 2006.” The collection includes recordings by L. Ron Hubbard, the Trees Community, Jim Jones’s Peoples Temple Choir, and more, all acquired through various trade networks, record fairs, and file-shares. In the immortal words of Dana Carvey doing Johnny Carson: That is some weird, wild stuff.
Kickstarter Podcast #5: Glorkian Warrior
In the latest Kickstarter Podcast (subscribe on iTunes or listen online), we sit down with indie comics legend James Kochalka and Pixeljam Games’ Rich Grillotti and Miles Tilmann about Glorkian Warrior, a retro-inspired videogame that mixes hand-drawn and 8-bit pixel animation.
James Kochalka is undeniably prolific, though he balks at the word. He’s kept a daily comic diary of his life on American Elf for the last 12 years, released 40+ books, recorded 10 albums, and just appeared in a scifi film. But he’s never made a videogame, something he’d been aching to do since he was a kid.
Thanks to a chance meeting at a chiptune concert, Kochalka’s collaborating with Pixeljam Games to make it happen. Pixeljam’s responsible for some of the web’s most addictive and innovative Flash games, such as Dino Run, Gamma Bros., Ratmaze, and Mountain Maniac. It’s a match made in geek heaven.
Their Kickstarter project ends tonight, so get the Glorkian Warrior game, mini-comic, and other exclusive rewards while you can.
Kickstarter Podcast #4: Building the Open Source Bussard Fusion Reactor
The latest Kickstarter podcast (subscribe on iTunes or listen online) features a conversation with Famulus, a hacker-turned-inventor who is attempting to create an open source fusion reactor using Kickstarter. The project is currently $700 short of its $3,000 goal with five days to go.
Famulus’ project took an odd twist last week when he posted a project update called “Close Encounter With an Investor.” The fascinating post carefully details his conversations and email exchanges with a Dutch energy investor who was interested in bringing serious funding to Famulus’ research. At one point the investor asked him how much money he needed to really bring the project to fruition. Famulus replied:
"Full realization of a break-even reactor will require $200M+. Full commercialization will require another ~$200M. Successful development and commercialization will lead to net income on the order of $100B/year.
Year 1: Tackle small-scale research. < $1M
Year 2: Build a sub-break-even superconducting reactor running p-11B continuously with a single cell of direct energy conversion. $11M
Year 3: Build-out of break-even reactor. $100M
Year 4: Build-out and operation of break-even reactor. $100M
Year 5: Begin commercialization. $200M
Year 6: IPO”
A $412 million project — a Kickstarter first!
In the end the investor declined, and Famulus’ experiments are on hold until the Kickstarter project ends. (He needs to buy a couple hundred dollars’ worth of parts.)
Our conversation was awesome. It was hard not to be impressed by his smarts, knowledge, and passion. And he said that Kickstarter played a huge role in this quest. As he remarked, “Kickstarter allowed me the avenue to say ‘I need money’ in an appropriate way.”
New Podcast: Coming & Crying
Meaghan O’Connell and Melissa Gira Grant of Coming & Crying are the guests on the third Kickstarter podcast, which went up on iTunes this morning. (You can subscribe on iTunes or download/stream from the web.) From the beginning of Coming & Crying, we were struck by what an amazing job Meaghan and Melissa did of putting themselves into their project. Being a backer was far more than a financial transaction; you really felt a part of their vision.
We invited Meaghan and Melissa down to the Kickstarter offices a few weeks ago to discuss their success, the origins of their project, and whether their parents knew what they were up to. Unsurprisingly it was an awesome conversation, and we came away inspired by their passion and excited to see how their project would grow.