Sunday, February 03, 2008

Dinosaurs and Robots Dispatch: New Digital Mag from Mark Frauenfelder & Mister Jalopy

It is true that my entertaining internet presence, Hooptyrides, has been neglected as of late. As Ed T. - official stalker of Hooptyrides - has pointed out, the time elapsed since my last post has officially set a new record for inattention by shattering the Spring 2007 period of neglect.

Though I would like to claim sloth as the excuse, I have been fantastically busy launching a media conglomerate with Mark Frauenfelder called Dinosaurs and Robots. In addition to a blog and radio station, Dinosaurs and Robots is also publishing a (digital) magazine called Dispatch.

Make Magazine has been terrifically supportive of trying all sorts of novel approaches to conveying technical information and have backed it up by hiring great artists to illustrate whatever I am trying to explain. The relationship is better than great and I am spoiled by their attention to excellence. But, as a DIY-snob, I have always wanted to try to do the entire thing myself. The first issue of Dispatch is a handy magazine of projects, techniques and tools, loosely arranged around the idea of transport.

Besides planning and executing every step of the projects myself, I was also the sole designer, photographer, writer and editor of the inaugural Dispatch. It was a good deal of effort - maybe 60 hours, as it required a lot of starting from scratch. But, it was great fun and the next one will be less onerous as I have now set some standards for how I want to convey information.

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There are folks who do not believe creative effort should be rewarded monetarily. I am not one of those people. Dispatch is released as a PDF with dynamic ads from Adobe/Yahoo. You can choose to turn off the ads or open the PDF with Apple Preview, which does not support ads. However, if you enjoy the Dispatch and would like to see future issues, I would appreciate it if you'd open with the Adobe Reader and leave the ads enabled.

Since I have had a sneak peek, I am eagerly looking forward to Volume 2 by Mark Frauenfelder. It is very cool.

UPDATE: Due to issues at Mediafire, I have uploaded to, which I should have done in the first place. Link

Thanks to Eric, Mike and Matt of Yahoo!