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"Tell the chef, the beer is on me."
I left TechTV 11 years ago. One year later I started TWiT. Practically every day since then I’ve met people who loved The Screen Savers and asked me if I ever planned to bring it back. I always said no, because TWiT was really a different beast, and I don’t like the idea of recreating something I’ve already done.
But the drumbeat never stopped, and over the years the capabilities of our TWiT production team got better and better. Our New Year’s Eve marathons over the last two years convinced me that we had the chops to do something like a TV show but more authentic, less glossy, and better suited to 2015.
I didn’t want to bring back The Screen Savers, but I did start thinking that we could do a new Screen Savers for a new decade. A variety show dedicated to technology and featuring many of the folks I have worked with over the past 20 years, mixing TechTV favorites with our current talented TWiT team and introducing a new generation of makers, hackers, and geeks.
I wasn’t interested in doing a County Fair nostalgia act; I wanted to do something brand new that captured the spirit and fun of the original Screen Savers. I wanted to make all those fans happy again.
And this month, we did it. Announcing a new Screen Savers for a new era: the era of makerbots and the Internet of Things. I give you The NEW Screen Savers!
I’ll be looking for you every Saturday afternoon at 3p Pacific/6p Eastern/2200 UTC on TWiT Live. Join us in studio by emailing email@example.com. We’ll be bringing back the Netcam Network, too, (minus the single frame per second framerate and telephone audio) so send us your questions at firstname.lastname@example.org. And if you can’t be there live, download an on-demand version from our web site. Better yet, subscribe and never miss an episode.
TechTV was in 50 million households by the time Comcast bought it and buried it. Today TWiT can be seen by over 1 billion people all over the world. It’s time to show them what the Internet can do that cable TV can’t. I can’t wait to see you!
My lovely Lisa Kentzell has created a new personal blog, The Life Of Lisa. The most recent post features my picture from our Presidents’ Day trail ride. I used my new Sony A7R with the Zeiss 55mm lens (one of only two available to date). Fortunately “old Joe” didn’t buck me off.
Dan Gillmor writing in the Guardian has it right…
As we Americans watch our parades and fire up our grills this 4 July, the 237th anniversary of the Declaration of Independence – the seminal document of the United States – we should take the time to ask ourselves some related questions: how did we come to this state of mind and behavior? How did we become so fearful and timid that we’ve given away essential liberties? Do we realize what we’re giving up? What would the nation’s founders think of us?
Protest Internet spying and support the 4th Ammendment at The Internet Defense League.
It’s worth fighting for.
Here’s some insight into how TWiT works behind the scenes from our CEO, Lisa Kentzell: “How I Work With Leo Laporte.” She’s definitely not “yes” woman. In fact, one of Lisa’s mottoes is “no is a complete sentence.”
It’s not always easy to have someone around who challenges my firmly-held beliefs, but it’s probably the single most important skill Lisa brings to the business. These days I often come to her with the sentence, “tell me why this is a bad idea.” And she does. And she’s (almost) always right.
Thank you, Lisa!!
When I first started to do live streaming of our show production, I was worried about streaming capacity. I did some research and found that the record for a live streaming audience had been set in 2005 by AOL’s stream of Live 8: 175,000 peak viewers and a stream of 56Gbps. That was the upper limit, I felt, and it seemed highly unlikely we’d ever have to worry about matching that.
Now, eight years later, I’ve learned from our CEO, Lisa Kentzell, that the peak live viewership for last week’s Google I/O coverage on TWiT was 200,000. Yesterday we peaked at 180,000 for the Xbox One reveal. That peak happened after Microsoft left the stage and during our panel dissection of what we’d just seen. It seems pretty clear that this is the kind of coverage you want from us.
When people ask me for the elevator pitch for TWiT, I always tell them “the CNN of tech” and like CNN our biggest numbers happen when news breaks. We do especially well during coverage of product announcements and big keynotes. I expect we’ll set a new TWiT viewing record during Apple’s WWDC keynote in three weeks.
But the real story of TWiT’s success isn’t about raw numbers. I use them as a signal to tell me what kind of content you are interested in, but we succeed due to the engagement of our community. One thousand engaged viewers are worth more than 10,000 inattentive viewers. And our community is among the most engaged anywhere. Thank you for making this possible. The TWiT Army rocks!
The real power behind the yoga ball at TWiT is our CEO, Lisa Kentzell. She just posted a summary of what she did before she joined TWiT over on her blog at lisakentzell.com. I didn’t even know half this stuff.
She’s also been posting a bunch of great pictures on her Google+ page – it’s worth circling her.
"Tell the chef, the beer is on me."
"Basically the price of a night on the town!"
"I'd love to help kickstart continued development! And 0 EUR/month really does make fiscal sense too... maybe I'll even get a shirt?" (there will be limited edition shirts for two and other goodies for each supporter as soon as we sold the 200)