I are a writer. Ever since I was knee-high to a grasshopper (now sadly deceased) I have been putting words on paper or screen, many in the correct grammatical sequence and periodically making sense.
For the last 29 years, I have been writing about consumer electronics. This followed more than a decade of covering sports, mostly New Jersey high school and some college athletics. But with no cheering allowed in the press box, I decided I would rather spectate and rage illogically or high-five as if I had a hand in the proceedings than report logically.
But my sporting reporting led to my writing "Bums No More: The Championship Season of the 1955 Brooklyn Dodgers" (St. Martin's Press, 1995), which followed "The Rules of Neighborhood Poker According to Hoyle" (New Chapter Press, 1990), both well-reviewed but both sadly out of print (although "Bums" is now available as an e-book for the low low price of $2.99).
Over the last three decades, I've covered the introductions of nearly every major gadget since 1983. I've attended around 40 Consumer Electronics Shows (there used to be two shows a year in case you've done some math in your head). I also am the unofficial historian for the Consumer Electronics Association (the industry group that throws CES); I am an elector for the CEA Hall of Fame, I write most of the Hall of Fame bios (I get to talk to geniuses) and each year I update a history of the industry, a project I started on more than a decade ago, for CEA's "Digital America" publication.
Outside of the my technology history writing, I've written about new gadgets and technology for Rolling Stone, Playboy, Popular Science, Consumers Digest and a host of other consumer, hobbyist and consumer electronics trade publications. You can also find my scribblings on DVICE.com, another NBC-Universal Web site, and other NBC affiliate Web sites. I've been writing for TechGoesStrong for around 18 months.
In between, I spent 10 years researching and writing movie intros and outros for American Movie Classics (AMC) when they were a competitor of Turner Classic Movies. In other words, I was a professional film historian, which remains my favorite literary incarnation.
What I Know Now That I Didn't Know at 20
Um, everything? Except maybe not to eat yellow snow, a knuckleball is actually thrown with the fingertips, and east is east and west is west, and if you take cranberries and stew them like applesauce, they taste much more like prunes than rhubarb (extra credit for naming the source of this wisdom).
Seriously – what do you know at 20 other than everyone who is our age now was an idiot? Or, put another way, I've learned that life is a never-ending process of discovering what an idiot you were 10 minutes ago.
As far as technology is concerned, when I was 20 in 1975, the only electronics I owned was a clock radio, a champagne-colored Marantz stereo receiver (with useless but cool-looking needle VU meters) handed down from my older sister, a Dual turntable and a pair of three-feet-tall Altec Lansing speakers providing support for a plank of wood that served as the shelf for the receiver and turntable and my vinyl record collection.
In the succeeding 35 years filled with tech miracles such as the VCR, the CD, the home computer, the Walkman, laserdiscs, home theater, cable TV, laptop computers, camcorders, cell phones, the digital camera, DVDs, flat screen high-definition TVs, the Palm Pilot, GPS, digital music, earbud earphones, satellite TV and radio, the DVR, smart phones, memory cards, Blu-ray, e-book readers and tablet PCs, I've learned it takes around 28 months for drooling "Holy crap!" new gadget rapture to turn into blasé "my mother has one."
5 Favorite Stories I've Written for TGS
Picking favorite stories is a double-edged ego sword; you want to say it's hard to narrow it down to five, but even admitting to liking your own work sounds a bit egotistical. But, that's the assignment, so here we go.
I'm not much of a social networker, so I enjoyed tweaking Facebook users for their social laziness concerning the posting of birthday wishes in "What is the Facebook Birthday Protocol?"
And speaking of social networking and life in 21st century America, I marvel at the silliness of raging against our lack of privacy in "Why Privacy is a 21st Century Myth."
As a technology historian, I obviously love writing about technology and the geniuses behind our technologies, and how the past informs our present and future, which explains why I'm partial to my tech forefather stories such as "Meet the Man Who Invented the Modern Age," "Happy Birthday, Thomas Edison" and, more recently, "Steve Jobs, 1955-2011: Random Thoughts."
So, are you pleased you allowed me to introduce myself?