Justin Hall's personal site growing & breaking down since 1994

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justin @ hotwired


The HotWired I knew is past recollected from my perspective in these pages, but I can't find an archived staff page anywhere at hotwired.com. I guess that's the mutability of history!

When we lost our first few employees, there was a "HotWired Emeritii" section, with links to pages about people who used to work there. That stuff was gone some time ago.

It's been interesting to follow the HotStaff page, I made some notes about it in my HotWired index.

John Alderman
One of the truly wacky personalities at HotWired, unfortunately brought on when I was already disengaging.
He plays in a band called Three Day Stubble, sort of Nerd-Core punk, I hear. I went to see them once, playing at Slim's with L7, but I couldn't get in free, and I didn't have any money on me.
He's got a flamin' red mane, and quite a snappy wardrobe. He's got a good taste for esoterica, included a London hybrid Indian Funk posse called DholBlasters. I'm still looking for their album Bhangratulations! it's hypnotic.
Andrew Anker, el jefe
Jill Atkinson
Of biancaTroll fame, she too travelled to Burning Man.
Icy blue eyes, and such sweet disposition, she was always a pleasant presence. Lighthearted without being superficial.
June and Julie to Jillo - the women talk and communicate in a way that most of the men here do not - Will to some degree, Gary, Chip, even Louis, or me, but none with the regularity that Julie June and Jillo do. Every time these women enter the office, they do a check in at Jill's desk, since she's usually already there. Jillo spent a lot of time at HotWired. I was glad to have her there.
Brian Brian Behlendorf, Engineer
Chip Bayers, Managing Editor
Al Choe
Al talked real fast. He was a presence at the beginning, diminished to a ghost over time, and finally became a celebrity. He did C programming, but was really into Mac hardware, so he sort of straddled the unix weenie/mac weenie worlds.
He had a car that he let me and Chip use to go pick up Henry's Hunan one night. I have never seen so many mini-mart coffee cups and power bar wrappers in my life. There was an eight inch package covering over everything.
June Cohen
June became the editor of the NetSurf section, a job she picked up with her bright-eyed Stanford enthusiasm.
She had a prodigious head of curls set on a compact frame, given to hip-hop dancing. She took me to a Gold's Gym hip-hop class with her once, she seemed to be in her element.
I think netsurfing inspires a bit of net.idealism, or penchance for bizarra - June was no exception, holding forth for the funky.
Abbe Don
An interface design expert who was at the first meeting I attended about Wired online, I only saw her once again in connection with HotWired.
She ended up being my excuse to get into the schmoozy, A-level Wired Anniversary Party. I went as her date.
Caleb J. Caleb Donaldson
Michael Gold
Our database programmer always looked as though he had the weight of the world up on his shoulders. Perhaps it was advertisers clawing for HotWired user statistics. I think he just worried too much.
He had rigged up so many ways of studying folks - each week we'd see where people came in, where they left off, which pages were hits at what times, from what links - meta level user surviellance. All for a better HotWired, of course!
Will Kreth
Barbara Kuhr
Barbara was responsible for much of the design of HotWired, including bringing Max Kissman aboard to do those wonderful icons. She was one half of the design team of Plunkett and Kuhr (or KuhrPlunk, as she called it), which has much to do with the flashy flourescent cacaphony that is Wired design.
Tall, almost horselike limbs with a distinct designer appearance, Barbara was both frantic and mellow. While the upper management egos were power-tripping around her, she was intently working on her shit, including designing the new offices for Hot/Wired, setting up a Mahler exhibition in New York, and bringing HotWired to design fruition.
Some of the feuders seemed to hope she could function as a go between, a rationalizer who could speak to all parties and smooth ruffled feathers. She was too busy, and the egos were not to be surmounted.
What an Imf.Ian McFarland
Ian was always in the mood to do wacky shit, to waste time, to talk about anything as abstract or concrete as you desired. He introduced me to MOOs.
He was one of the only people I met at HotWired who was actually from San Francisco - born and raised. He wore a sweater and jeans, often a scarf as well, nearly everytime I saw him. He was really into coffee, he had a turkish hand coffee grinder on his desk, which was messier than mine.
I spent some crazy nights with Ian, out in the middle of the Nevada Desert, for Burning Man
Ian is the creator of the famed Zime Cocktail Tips.
Ian left HotWired to persue Neo Network Services, his own web publishing firm.
Sean Malloy
Sean was another young editorial assistant like me. I remember seeing him his first day - his pants were just a bit too short, his cowlick projected hairs, he had a toothy grin. He became DOS boy, custodian of the sole PC at HotWired. He relished this role, it set him apart, he kept us up to date, and did a good job at it.
He has a sort of quiet wackiness to him. I wonder whether he's been set free at all since I left; I believe they finally got him a mac.
Josh Michaels
I didn't really have a sense of Mushroom Jazz until I met Josh. Short, compact Josh was our resident DJ - connected with the urban music scene, leaving HotWired weekday midnights to take his white van full of records crates and spin at small clubs. He was definitely one of the late night crew, sharing in some misadventures.
He came on late, as a Renaissance assistant. Worked a few weeks, had some good times, gave some good ideas, brought on some good music, and then split for Chicago.
Matthew Nelson
His monastic haircut and wire rimmed glasses (that turned dark when he went outside!), he was the philosophy student, who spent quality time with Terrance McKenna. He was often confused, asking questions. Somehow he always seemed to be doing his thing, but other people were not performing as he expected, which seemed to leave him a bit baffled.
Like the rest of us, he became more cynical over time.
Matthew can be found at Organic, a web page publishing business he set up with his brother.
Jim Petersen
Julie Petersen
Howard Howard Rheingold, Executive Editor
Louis Rossetto, el jefe's jefe.
David Sanner
Dave was the technical dude, who ran the most arcane aspects of the servers and the network at Wired.
Dave was quite a player. He played everything. There were a few days in December when I saw him talking to a different woman each time I left HotWired. Asking him a question was like rolling dice - you didn't know what you're gonna get, and how long it was gonna take. He would stare off in the distance, or stare right at you, affect a bizarre expression, say something criptic, ask you a question, burst into smile and start muttering in some strange accent.
He was a good guy, definitely likable. He played in a band, El-Kabong, that played at the HoeDown.
Lisa Seaman
Lisa did a lot of the early logo implementations and I think some of the preliminary page designs. She left before launch for a job she said would have more security - a company I don't even now remember that went bust up before HotWired did.
Steuer Jonathan Steuer, Online Tsar, Publisher, um, Information and Technology Architect. Something like that.
Jeff Veen
A twenty-something design intern, Jeff was the most christian employee at HotWired. He worked every day from 9 until 5, when he would shoulder his bag, stride out tall, waving see yuh to everyone, as he returned home to his schoolteaching wife.
Funny thing was, he looked like a pirate. Tall, wavy blonde hair, dashing facial structure, and a small hoop in his ear.
In a place filled with extreme people, Jeff was a pretty well-balanced dude. He did, of course, have his wacky side, evident from his home page, it just didn't get in the way.
He took great advantage of our Quicktake camera. If not for him, there would have been no photos of the hoedown.
Gary Gary Wolf Section Editor, Section Director, Executive Editor

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