whole earth catalog (5)

Recomendo, New Book from the Cool Tool Folks

First, Cool Tools is the most consistently useful destination for me on the web. I can’t count the amount of good tips, tools, savvy I’ve found there. It’s the electronic Whole Earth Catalog, using the same formula of non-commercial reviews by people of like interests.

Now, Kevin Kelly, Mark Frauenfelder, and Claudia Dawson have come up with a dandy little book of cool stuff. You can’t browse on a computer like you can with a real book. I started thumbing through it one night, serendipitously, and found that the small size was easy to deal with, and pretty soon an hour had passed. Fun!

Secondly, full disclosure: I’ve been a Cool Tools contributor (and fan) for years. So I’m not unbiased. But I believe in peer reviews, such as was started in the late ’60s by the WEC. It’s so refreshing to get non-commercial information from this tribe of tool users.

The book has 560 recommendations, and is 10 bucks, print-on-demand from Amazon here.

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Whole Earth Catalog’s 50th Anniversary

Here’s a video made for the occasion. I was the shelter editor for several incarnations of the Catalog, including The Whole Earth Epilog.

“Meet the creators of the Whole Earth Catalog and the community they inspired. This video history of the Whole Earth culture covers 50 years of collective innovation in just 38 minutes.

“Whole Earth Flashbacks” takes you on a dazzling journey through time, from the first Whole Earth Catalogs to the Co-Evolution Quarterly, the Whole Earth Review, the Hackers Conference, the Well, Cyberthon, Wired, Burning Man and the 10,000 Year Clock, to name but a few.

These projects have one thing in common: they gave access to tools and ideas to help people bring their dreams to life — and change the world together.

This video retrospective features many creative minds and thought leaders: Stewart Brand, Jay Baldwin, Stephanie Mills, Lloyd Kahn, Ted Nelson, Doug Adams, Steven Levy, Andy Hertzfeld, Howard Rheingold, Jaron Lanier, Wavy Gravy, Kevin Kelly, Larry Harvey, Danny Hillis and Steve Jobs, in order of appearance.

Whole Earth Flashbacks was created by Fabrice Florin, with the help of over 60 community members…. Our video premiered at the 50th Anniversary of the Whole Earth Catalog on October 13, 2018, at Fort Mason in San Francisco.…”

https://vimeo.com/album/5479545/video/294878432

(In the 2nd row of the above collage, 2nd from left, is a fisheye shot of me in my dome at Pacific High School in 1968.)

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Thursday Morning Fish Fry

(The title above based on San Francisco columnist Herb Caen’s 3-dot journalism wrap-ups of recent doings.)

Well!

State of this blog (and my ongoing compulsion to communicate) In the early years of blogging, I put heart and soul into it — a lot of writing. As time has passed, I have a lot less time plus I’ve switched to more photos/less talk. Once in a while, though, I like to explain what’s going on. Life is very rich around here right now. I’m 83 and feel like I’m just getting going. I need a clone or two to do all I want to do.

Books

Driftwood book We just printed out proofs yesterday and I am beyond thrilled. What started as a short-run digital printing for friends has turned into a full fledged book. The book has doubled in size, now includes photos (and words) from my trip along the Lost Coast, and lots of full-bleed photo spreads. I like the small (8½″ by 8½″) format … it’s totally different than all my 9″ by 12″ building books, each with over 1,000 photos. Here the photos are larger, and fewer … here there’s consistency in that all the photos are mine, and Rick has brought out the best in each with his Photoshop skills. … I’m stoked!

Half-Acre Homestead book I’m about to start doing layout.

Galloway’s Book on Running Jeff Galloway has revised his classic book (650,000 copies sold) and we’re starting to put together the 3rd edition. Jeff, a 1972 Olympian, along with Bill Rogers, Frank Shorter, and Kenny Moore, were the first generation of long-haired runners in the ’70s, largely responsible for the running craze that’s still with us. Jeff held the American record for the 10 mile in 1973 (47:49), ran the mile in college at 4:12, and at age 35, ran a marathon in 2:16. He’s also a charismatic teacher and in recent years has popularized the “run-walk-run” method of training.

Stretching, which has sold over 3½ million copies worldwide and is in 23 languages (including Latvian), will have its 40th anniversary issue in 2020. Next year I’ll hang out with Bob and Jean Anderson at their home in the Colorado Rocky Mountains, and we’ll put together the new edition.

The ’60s Whenever I get the chance I put up another chapter on this era. They are gathered under the button (above), “The ’60s.” It’ll take maybe a year to get it all posted, and then I might turn it into a book.

Non-profit books I have a bunch of scrapbooks I’m starting to print via the digital, short-run process. The first one is Pop’s Diner, 48 pages, a scrapbook of a 2-week trip I took through the Southwest in my Toyota 4×4, 5-speed, stick shift, 4-cylinder truck in 1989. Remote hot springs in Nevada, backpacking in the Paria Canyon, waterfalls and petroglyphs in Utah, hamburgers at Pop’s Diner in Arizona, and friendly Americans. I worked nights putting together a scrapbook — pasted down 4 by 6 color prints, hand lettered the text, and painted on some of the photos. I had a 2 copies made on a Canon photocopy machine at Krishna Copy in San Francisco (in 1989), paid $100 to have it bound. Print run of two! … I’d either loan it or ship it to friends in a plywood box, and they would return it in a few weeks.… the idea was to take the reader along with me, riding shotgun … when I travel like this, I pretend I have a passenger riding along … it’s a relief to do a “book” like this, with no worries about sales … purely to give to people when I see them.… this one printed by Lightning Source, 40 copies, costs about $6 each.… more to come when I have time…

Publicity

Christopher Ryan Tangentially speaking

L-r: Lloyd, Chris Ryan, Evan Kahn (Evan set up the interview.)

A bunch of stuff lately: Chris Ryan did a one-hour interview of me here for a podcast to be put up soon on his Tangentially Speaking podcast site. A delightful, insightful guy … Surfer’s Journal is doing a feature article on me, probably some time early in 2019. They’re also considering an article on my driftwood shacks photos … this I’m excited about because it’s such a classy publication … I got interviewed by people from a Japanese magazine for an article on wood … they interviewed artist/builder Jay Nelson in San Francisco for the same article, so I’m in good company … Monday I’m getting interviewed about tiny homes by La Leche, an Italian magazine for children … next week I’m getting interviewed by Alan Solomon for a book to be published by Abrams on reclajmed lumber, a subject dear to my heart … I’m doing all this and a bunch of “social media” things to make more people aware of our books.

Check out what Mari Lillestol and Evan are doing with Shelter’s Instagram and Shelter’s blog (the latter different from mine in that it’s focused entirely on building).

Shameless Commerce

I’d prefer that we could just produce books and they’d sell like crazy forever, but it doesn’t work that way. We encourage everyone to patronize independent bookstores (there’s nothing like browsing), but if you ARE going to buy books online, we’re now offering discounts on our website — we’re cheaper than Amazon with 2 books or more, plus free shipping. We’re also setting up to sell the entire “Shelter Library of Building Books” — 7 books —at a 60% discount. They cover the years from 1973 to 2017 … over 7,000 photos. We’re making an effort to get our books out there, so more people will see them. Our website: www.shelterpub.com

Miscellany

Entrance to Shelter’s worldwide headquarters. Wow

Got my 15 HP 2-stroke Evinrude running fine now, going crabbing tomorrow and when I put my two pots out, I’m going looking for a black bear that’s been spotted in the nearby woods, with a telephoto lens … Whole Earth Catalog 50th anniversary party in SFO October 13th, public invited … a lot of us have sent in photos from the ’60s to be on display … Music du jour: Linda Gail Lewis on tour in France: Rockin’ My Life Away: www.youtube.com/ …

Ground control to Major Tom,
Ground control to Major Tom,
Take your protein pills,
and put your helmet on …

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History of the Whole Earth Catalog and The Birth of West Coast Publishing

A copy of the first WEC. 1,000 copies were printed, according to Stewart. Very rare these days; used copies run from $250 to over $900.

A few weeks ago, I said I’d post more on The Whole Earth Catalog, which is having its 50th year anniversary party this October, and I ran across this post from 3 years ago: www.lloydkahn.com/…

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Stewart Brand and the 50th-year Anniversary of the Whole Earth Catalog

Last night I went to an event at Capgemini Applied Innovation Exchange in San Francisco, celebrating the 50th anniversary of the Whole Earth Catalog. It was a 3-hour tribute to and lovefest for Stewart Brand, and the role he has played in shaping so many trends and affecting and inspiring so many people’s lives. I got invited because I was the shelter editor of the WEC back in the day. About a dozen people gave 3-minute speeches, including Kevin Kelly, Orville Schell, Peter Calthorpe, Tim O’Reilly and astronaut Rusty Schweikart on Stewart’s impact on their lives. Not to mention that Steve Jobs (now famously) said that in high school he was reading the WEC and it had a lot to do with inspiring him to get into building computers Wow!

This was a private event, but a prequel to a big celebration, open to the public, coming up on October 13th, 2018, at the Cowell Theater in San Francisco: https://www.wholeearth50th.com/

I’m going to write a bit about my experiences with Stewart next week.

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