Cory Efram Doctorow is a Canadian-British blogger, journalist, and science fiction author who serves as co-editor of the weblog Boing Boing. He is an activist in favour of liberalising copyright laws and a proponent of the Creative Commons organization, using some of their licences for his books. Some common themes of his work include digital rights management, file sharing, and “post-scarcity” economics. Doctorow began selling fiction when he was 17 years old and sold several stories followed by publication of his story “Craphound” during 1998. Down and Out in the Magic Kingdom, Doctorow’s first novel, was published during January 2003, and was the first novel released under one of the Creative Commons licences, allowing readers to circulate the electronic edition as long as they neither made money from it nor used it to create derived works. The electronic edition was released simultaneously with the print edition. During March 2003, it was re-released with a different Creative Commons licence that allowed derivative works such as fan fiction, but still prohibited commercial usage. It was nominated for a Nebula Award, and won the Locus Award for Best First Novel during 2004. A semi-sequel short story named Truncat was published on Salon.com in August 2003. Doctorow’s other novels have been released with Creative Commons licences that allow derived works and prohibit commercial usage, and he has used the model of making digital versions available, without charge, at the same time that print versions are published.
Jeff Jarvis is an American journalist. He is the former television critic for TV Guide and People magazine, creator of Entertainment Weekly, Sunday editor and associate publisher of the New York Daily News, and a columnist on the San Francisco Examiner. He is a co-host on This Week in Google along with Leo Laporte and Gina Trapani, a show on the TWiT Network which covers cloud computing and social networking. In 2009, Jarvis wrote a book called, “What Would Google Do?” In the book, he discusses how companies can become successful like Google, and talks about how Google, and other top websites, such as Facebook, Craigslist, Wikipedia, and Digg, have changed the business model. He gives advice on how companies can copy Google’s success, and how other successful companies have already done so, such a Dell and Apple.
Marc Lowell Andreesen is an American entrepreneur, venture capitalist, software engineer, and multi-millionaire best known as co-author of Mosaic, the first widely-used web browser, and co-founder of Netscape Communications Corporation. He founded and later sold the software company Opsware to Hewlett-Packard. He is also a co-founder of Ning, a company that provides a platform for social-networking websites. He sits on the board of directors of Facebook, eBay, and HP, among others. Andreessen is a frequent keynote speaker and guest at Silicon Valley conferences. He is one of only six inductees in the World Wide Web Hall of Fame announced at the first international conference on the World Wide Web in 1994. Andreessen was born in Cedar Falls, Iowa, and raised in New Lisbon, Wisconsin, the son of Patricia and Lowell Andreessen, who worked for a seed company. He received his bachelor’s degree in computer science from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. As an undergraduate, he interned one summer at IBM in Austin, Texas, United States. He also worked at the university’s National Center for Supercomputing Applications (NCSA), where he became familiar with Tim Berners-Lee’s open standards for the World Wide Web. Andreessen and a full-time salaried co-worker Eric Bina worked on creating a user-friendly browser with integrated graphics that would work on a wide range of computers. The resulting code was the Mosaic web browser.
Nerd Mouse is a cartoon Internet mouse who is the most famous resident of Nerdville.org where he lives with his pet fish, Nerd Fish. He is the Resource Allocation Information Services Analyst Specialist for the County of Nerdonia.net. His friends (both of them) are nerds. He studied computers as a child by reading manuals and quizzing himself nightly. He had the highest grade point average in the history of Nerd Mouse University (a university Nerd Mouse created for himself). He studied nerd culture in school and created a complex grading system for which Nerd Mouse had the only key. He created NerdMouse.com to celebrate nerds and nerd culture (and because he honestly had nothing better to do).
Amber Dawn MacArthur is a Canadian television and netcasting personality. MacArthur is currently CP24’s Web/Technology Specialist as well as the host of Webnation. Previously, she produced and hosted her own video podcast, called commandN, and co-hosted the TWiT podcast network’s Social Hour (successor to net@night/Inside the Net). MacArthur is known for the series Call for Help, but has also hosted on Torrent and Gadgets and Gizmos for G4techTV Canada. MacArthur worked for over a year for Citytv’s CityNews and CP24, and she has recently returned to the now CTV-owned CP24 as New Media Specialist. She currently hosts and produces a show for XBOX called “Girls Go Geek” with Christopher Dick that features women in technology. MacArthur worked for Microsoft for two years as a web strategist, as a web designer at Razorfish in San Francisco, and as a judge at the Webby Awards 2000. She was also Director of Web Marketing at HigherMarkets, “where she managed corporate branding initiatives, software usability and online course development.” In 2007 she co-founded a media company MGImedia Communications Inc. with her brother Jeff.
Bruce Sterling Woodcock is an American computer and video games industry analyst, best known for his work on subscription tracking of massively multiplayer online games via his website MMOGCHART.COM. Woodcock was born in the small farming community of Sullivan, Missouri on June 20, 1970, the youngest of three children to Myron and Mary Woodcock. He graduated from Sullivan Senior High School in 1988, and then went on to Purdue University, studying physics, philosophy, and computer science. In 1989, he became involved in internet gaming on early MUDs, and in 1990, was briefly running two of the largest TinyMUDs of the time, TinyMUD Classic and Islandia. His original online handle was Sir Bruce Sterling, which was later shortened to Sir Bruce when he began posting on message boards. Leaving college early, he moved to Colorado Springs, Colorado in 1991, where he began a career in information technology. In 1993, he moved to San Jose, California, where he subsequently worked as a system administrator at early ISP Netcom (USA), and then Network Appliance, eventually leaving in 1997 with $250,000 in stock options. He started to maintain a presence on the Yahoo! financial message boards as he closely tracked the performance of Network Appliance, helped the company’s fortunes, and built his own portfolio to $3 million. With the advent of the MMOGs, Chron X and Ultima Online in 1997, Woodcock became a player and beta-tester for this genre of game. He invested in and joined the Board of Directors for Playnet and their game World War II Online, and in August 2002, began his research, reporting, and tracking of MMOG subscription numbers, which has become a standard of reference both inside and outside the MMOG industry. In November 2004 his work was moved to its own dedicated website, MMOGCHART.COM. The site has not been updated since May 2008.
Jeph Jacques writes and illustrates the webcomic Questionable Content. He was born in Rockville, Maryland, and graduated from Hampshire College with a degree in music. He lives in Southampton, Massachusetts with his wife (and business manager) Cristi. He also has a younger brother, Justin. Questionable Content (QC) is a comedic slice-of-life webcomic that Jacques started on August 1, 2003. It was initially published two days a week, and then moved up to three updates a week when Jacques published strip #16. On September 4, 2004 Jacques lost his day job, and decided to try publishing QC every weekday and make a living selling QC-related T-Shirts. Jeph is one of the small number of professional web cartoonists, as he and his wife Cristi both make their living through QC.