Berto Jongman: Stewart Brand and Big Ideas

Cultural Intelligence
Berto Jongman
Berto Jongman

Stewart Brand's Whole Earth Catalog, the book that changed the world

Stewart Brand was at the heart of 60s counterculture and is now widely revered as the tech visionary whose book anticipated the web. We meet the man for whom big ideas are a way of life

The Observer,

Stewart Brand
Stewart Brand

Stewart Brand didn't just happen to be around when the personal computer came into being; he's the one who put “personal” and “computer” together in the same sentence and introduced the concept to the world. He wasn't just a member of the world's first open online community, the Well; he co-founded it. And he wasn't just another of those 60s acid casualties; he was the definitive 60s acid casualty. Well, not casualty exactly, but he was there taking LSD in the days when it was still legal, with the most famous hipster of them all, Ken Kesey and his Merry Pranksters.

For nearly five decades, Stewart Brand has been hanging around the cutting edge of whatever is the most cutting thing of the day. Largely because he's discovered it and become fascinated with it long before anyone else has even noticed it but, in retrospect, it does make him seem like the west coast's answer to Zelig, the Woody Allen character who just happens to pop up at key moments in history. Because no one pops up like Stewart Brand pops up, right there, just on the cusp of something momentous.

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Robert David STEELE Vivas
Robert David STEELE Vivas

ROBERT STEELE:  Stewart created the HACKERS/THINK Conference that is now managed by Glenn Tenney and meets every November. I was elected to membership in 1994. I believe his “houseboat” is actually a working tugboat. Very nice piece overall — Stewart is what a President of the United States of America SHOULD BE but is not.

See Also:

2011   SALT Summaries, Condensed Ideas About Long-term Thinking [Kindle Only]

2009  Whole Earth Discipline: An Ecopragmatist Manifesto

2008  From Counterculture to Cyberculture: Stewart Brand, the Whole Earth Network, and the Rise of Digital Utopianism

2000  Clock Of The Long Now: Time And Responsibility: The Ideas Behind The World's Slowest Computer

1995   How Buildings Learn: What Happens After They're Built

1988  The Media Lab: Inventing the Future at M. I. T.

1981  The Next Whole Earth Catalog: Access to Tools

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