My Podcast is a regular feed in which I read from one of my stories for a few minutes at least once a week, from whatever friend’s house, airport, hotel, conference, treaty negotiation or what-have-you that I’m currently at. You can get the podcast though iTunes. Alternatively:
My latest podcast (MP3) is a reading of the author’s note from “Attack Surface” — the third Little Brother book, which comes out on Oct 12. I recorded this for the audiobook edition of Attack Suface, which I’ve been recording all last week with Amber Benson and the Cassandra de Cuir from Skyboat Media. If you like what you hear, please consider pre-ordering the book — it’s a scary time to have a book in the production pipeline!
Data breaches are inevitable (any data you collect will probably leak; any data you retain will definitely leak) and cumulative (your company’s data breach can be combined with each subsequent attack to revictimize your customers). Identity thieves benefit enormously from cheap storage, and they collect, store and recombine every scrap of leaked data. Merging multiple data sets allows for reidentification of “anonymized” data, and it’s impossible to predict which sets will leak in the future.
These nondeterministic harms have so far protected data-collectors from liability, but that can’t last. Toxic waste also has nondeterministic harms (we never know which bit of effluent will kill which person), but we still punish firms that leak it.
Waiting until the laws change to purge your data is a bad bet – by then, it may be too late. All the data your company collects and retains represents an unquantifiable, potentially unlimited source of downstream liability.
What’s more, you probably aren’t doing anything useful with it. The companies that make the most grandiose claims about data analytics are either selling analytics or data (or both). These claims are sales literature, not peer-reviewed citations to empirical research.
Data is cheap to collect and store – if you don’t have to pay for the chaos it sows when it leaks. And some day, we will make data-hoarders pay.
My third choice was Libro.fm, the DRM-free, indie-bookseller friendly way to listen to audiobooks. Basically the same catalog as Audible, at the same price, the only difference being that buying from them supports neighborhood booksellers, not Amazon.
It was a really fun! @Frauenfelder and @kevin2kelly are super smart about gadgets.
In a mere 25 minutes, we pack in a lot of material: how to break into the field, what a publisher’s job is, how “digital is different,” self-promotion, not being an unlikable weirdo when you’re self-promoting, technology’s role in shaping artistic success, and more. (here’s an MP3).
As a followup to my last podcast, which featured the Macmillan audiobook of my novella “The Masque of the Red Death”, this week’s podcast starts with a reading of Poe’s original 1842 story, “The Masque of the Red Death. It’s some next-level gothic stuff.
As a chaser, I close this week’s podcast with a reading of Twain’s classic, gothic, comedic “Literary Nightmare,” better known as “Punch, Brothers, Punch,” easily the best story ever written about an earworm.
Edgar Allen Poe wrote “The Masque of the Red Death” in 1842. It’s about a plutocrat who throws a masked ball in his walled abbey during a plague with the intention of cheating death.
My novella “The Masque of the Red Death” is a tribute to Poe; it’s from my book Radicalized. It’s the story of a plute who brings his pals to his luxury bunker during civlizational collapse in the expectation of emerging once others have rebuilt.
Naturally, they assume that when they do emerge, once their social inferiors have rebooted civilization, that their incredible finance-brains, their assault rifles, and their USBs full of BtC will allow them to command a harem and live a perpetual Frazetta-painting future.
And naturally – for anyone who’s read Poe – it doesn’t work out for them. They discover that humanity has a shared microbial destiny and that you can’t shoot germs. That every catastrophe must be answered with solidarity, not selfishness, if it is to be survived.
I got the message. Yesterday, I asked my agent to see if Macmillan Audio would let me publish the audiobook of my Masque of the Red Death for free. They said yes, and asked me to remind you that the audiobook of Radicalized (which includes Masque) is available for your delictation.
I hope you’ll check out the whole book. Radicalized was named one of the @WSJ’s best books of 2019, and it’s a finalist for Canada Reads, the national book prize. It’s currently on every Canadian national bestseller list.
There’s one hitch, though: Audible won’t sell it to you. They don’t sell ANY of my work, because I don’t allow DRM on it, because I believe that you should not have to lock my audiobooks to Amazon’s platform in order to enjoy them.
Instead, you can buy the audio from sellers like libro.fm, Downpour.com, and Google Play. Or you can get it direct from me. No DRM, no license agreement. Just “you bought it, you own it.”
In this special Covid-19 edition of my podcast, I revisit my end-of-the-world short story When Sysadmins Ruled the Earth, originally published in Baen’s Universe in 2005. Hundreds of people have emailed and tweeted me about this story this week, so I thought it was long overdue that I revisited it (I last read it into my podcast in 2006). more
For my latest podcast, I read my latest Locus op-ed, A Lever Without a Fulcrum Is Just a Stick, which analyzes why giving creators more copyright hasn’t made them richer, and proposes other kinds of authors’ rights that would translate into real money for real creators.
Last night I sat down for an interview and lively Q&A at the Kelowna Public Library with the CBC’s Sarah Penton as part of the Canada Reads national book prize, for which my book Radicalized is a finalist. Courtney Dickson was kind enough to send me raw audio from the board and to give me permission to post it and include it in my podcast feed. It was a genuinely wonderful night, with great and thoughtful questions, and I’m really glad that I get to share it with you! (MP3)
A couple of weeks ago, I posted Part I of my interview with the Firewalls Don’t Stop Dragons podcast, a podcast that covers computer security in a way that is accessible to nontechnical people. Carey Parker has posted part II (MP3) of the interview, where we dig into Right to Repair, Adversarial Interoperability, and monopoly control and trustbusting. It’s a great interview — hope you enjoy hearing it as much as I enjoyed participating in it!