HNDP.LA brings together the local community for a Kickstarter launch party



Two days after releasing their initial funding goals, the talented team behind the unique music platform called HNDP (Helping Nations Discover Peace) organized an event at a skateshop in the Northeastern part of Los Angeles, California.

The party was held at Maintain your-lifestyle, and dozens of people gathered to help support the mobile music truck movement that HNDP is looking to setup. T-shirt’s were purchased while graffiti art was sprayed onto plywood boards live on the streets outside by members of the surrounding neighborhoods. As refreshments were served up, the co-founders of HNDP (William Correa & Aaron Duran) started a small cypher vibing to the beats and rhythms of DJTun gaining momentum and attracting attention of those who strolled by.


It was amazing to see how artists, musicians, rappers, designers, game-developers, DJ’s, hustlers, photographers, and bloggers all showed up at the skateshop soaking in the creative environment as onlookers walked outside. Those who stuck around for a bit, consistently whipped out camera-phones out of denim pockets raising them toward the sky ready to capture the moments in time.


When the night unreluctantly wound down, the crowds dispersed leaving behind the foundation of the HNDP team. This is when I had a chance to sit down with Stephen Saiz, the President of HNDP’s Board of Directors, to talk.

Below are segments of what was asked:

Why are you here today?

I’m here today to help the rest of the Board and co-founders Aaron and William launch our Kickstarter program which is going to help us fund the 1st phase of building out the truck that we are going to operate out of.

Tell us about HNDP. What is it? And where did the idea come from?

So HNDP originally started out as a program at Self Help Graphics & Art back in 2009. At that time, I was the Board President at Self Help and William and Aaron came to me and pitched the idea of using our space every Friday afternoon and throwing open-mics. We basically allowed them to do that, and what they ultimately built after that point was incredible. They built a huge buzz.

At that time, the program the program was actually called Hard N’ Da Paint. They ultimately were getting anywhere from 40 to 60 kids to come in on a Friday afternoon. They started to do more shows and even began operating on Saturdays to throw these larger events and bring in bigger-named artists allowing these kids that came in on open-mics to open up.

It was just really a compelling program, and to see the youth’s response and how they worked with the kids and to see the enthusiasm of the participation was something that I knew I wanted to be a part of longer-term.

Who came up with the idea of the Mobile Music Truck?

So the mobile music truck is something that we kind of formulated as a group. We knew, and because of a lot of us were experienced within the nonprofit sector, how challenging it was to actually own a physical space. So we thought we would kill two birds with one stone. We knew we wanted to serve the greater LA area and we knew that some nonprofits were using mobile vehicles like schoolbuses and that type of thing. In addition, we also experienced the phenomenon of lunch trucks within LA and saw how compelling that was to get people to follow on social media and always follow where the trucks were at. So we thought that we could combine the two and keep our overhead lean down by exclusively operating out of the vehicle, to be able to serve the greater LA area and to actually do it in an innovative way and to get people excited how we were going to approach it from a nonprofit perspective.

What do you think people will learn from the HNDP experience?

I think they are going to learn a ton of stuff. At its core, we are a music development program. We are building that out though to broader digital arts. But at the end of the day, we are really teaching entrepreneurship, whether they want to be a musician, a digital artist, a game developer, a promoter, a street team builder.

Do you think that you will reach the $15,000 goal that you have set with Kickstarter?

I think that it is going to be a challenge, but I think that we will get there. We are already nearly 20% of the way there. With additional support and the more people that learn about it and are introduced to the organization, and because of our compelling offering and compelling story, I think that people will hopefully feel the same way and open up their wallets and donate.

We have very low limits. You can donate as little as $2, and we also have some much higher stretch goals. So we are hoping to get in some bigger donors as well. We think that we are actually offering a pretty compelling variety of items and merchandise that will appeal to a variety of potential donors.

What are the next steps to reaching the Kickstarter goal?

We are going to continue to market it. We are going to continue to reach out to our network of people that we have in social media. A lot of us on the Board also have a lot of big professional networks, so we are individually reaching out to our friends and colleagues in the industries that we all come from.  We will continue to do that.

We will potentially talk to some friendly corporations out there that have either equipment and/or tools that we can potentially use in our programming to come in at some of the larger levels. We also have a series of fine art that we are going to be releasing, and we know that there is a huge collector base of some of the art that we have decided to select. We have been fortunate enough to have those artists donate their time and their art to us as a part of this campaign. As we continue to release new items and continue to market it and keep people updated on the type of content that we have, we think that that’s going to be a really big way for us to continue to reach out goal.


As this Kickstarter campaign continues over the next month or so, it is important to spread the story to as many people as possible. If you are interested in donating to the cause, or would like to know more about the project, be sure to visit their Kickstarter page here.

HNDP’s Kickstarter Video:

Article written by @industrychanger


More Links:

HNDP’s Kickstarter Page:

HNDP’s Website:

Another article about HNDP:

An Interview with Co-Founder of HNDP, William Correa:


In addition, here is a link to the full interview with Stephen Saiz:

Ted Nelson’s Xanadu finally gets released after 50+ years (with Transclusion).


“In computer science, transclusion is the inclusion of a document or part of a document into another document by reference.

Rather than copying the included data and storing it in two places, a transclusion embodies modular design, by allowing it to be stored only once (and perhaps corrected and updated if the link type supported that) and viewed in different contexts.” [1]

“The term was coined by hypertext pioneer Ted Nelson in 1963.” [2]


“Project Xanadu, the original hypertext project, is often misunderstood as an attempt to create the World Wide Web.

It has always been much more ambitious, proposing an entire form of literature where links do not break as versions change; where documents may be closely compared side by side and closely annotated; where it is possible to see the origins of every quotation; and in which there is a valid copyright system– a literary, legal and business arrangement– for frictionless, non-negotiated quotation at any time and in any amount.  The Web trivialized this original Xanadu model, vastly but incorrectly simplifying these problems to a world of fragile ever-breaking one-way links, with no recognition of change or copyright, and no support for multiple versions or principled re-use.  Fonts and glitz, rather than content connective structure, prevail.” [3]


One of the initial links of transclusion surfaced on April 24, 2014 at an event honoring Ted Nelson. The conference was held at Chapman University. Presidential Chair in Information Studies at UCLA, Christine Borgman, was there. Virtual reality pioneer and Author of ‘You Are Not a Gadget’, Jaron Lanier, attended to share his respect for Ted. Steve Wozniak even showed up unexpectedly giving a passionate speech at the end.


When the final presentation was made, Ted Nelson walked up to the stage to thank his friends for this outpouring of appreciation. He then went on to talk about his life’s experiences. He believes that this place would be a much better world if he succeeded at what he intended to do from an earlier age.

“But I ain’t dead yet!” he says during his speech.

Guided by the inspiration from his 4 main heroes (Walt Disney, Leonardo Da Vinci, Frank Lloyd Wright & Buckminster Fuller), Ted Nelson went out to be independent, able to see what others could not, and creating designs others could not imagine.

To wind up his story, Ted Nelson stated that he was “dealt one of the best hands in history, and misplayed it to the hilt. [He] could have accomplished so much more. [He] was here 1st, and it’s all gone wrong. [He] believes this would be a very different world and better world if [he] had gotten leverage. The world has gone the wrong way.”

Despite all that, Ted has continued on his visions, pursuing the ideas of transclusion in a visible way.

“Oh, I almost forgot…One more thing.”

The link for transclusion can be found here. The browser-based Xanadu is working. Nicolas Levin developed it.


Article written by @industrychanger

List of notable attendees at the Interwingled Conference

Steve Wozniak – American inventor, electronics engineer, and computer programmer who co-founded Apple Computer (now Apple Inc.) with Steve Jobs

Jaron Lanier – American writer, computer scientist, and composer of classical music. A pioneer in the field of virtual reality (a term he is credited with popularizing). Author of ‘You Are Not a Gadget’ and ‘Who owns the future?’

Wendy Hall – Professor of Computer Science and Dean of the Faculty of Physical Science and Engineering at the University of Southampton, UK; Former President of the Association for Computing Machinery; Multimedia and Hypermedia researcher.

Christine Borgman – Presidential Chair in Information Studies at UCLA; Author of Scholarship in the Digital Age.

Belinda Barnet – Lecturer in Media at Swinburne University of Technology, Melbourne; Author of Memory Machines: the Evolution of Hypertext.

Ian Hamilton – Writer. Editor. Photographer. Videographer. Technology reporter at the Orange County Register.

Morten Bay – Getting Ph.D. in Information Studies @ UCLA. Covers tech for politiken and

Gary Chung – Co-Founder at Jamby


Additional Links:

Full list of speakers + videos of all the presentations can be found here –

Ted Nelson’s Speech:

Working Xanadu Transclusion:

Project Xanadu Webpage:

Be on the lookout for Mobile Makerspaces. The DIY Community gets its wheels.


Technology makerspaces are places where like-minded individuals meet together to share ideas, use industrial tools, and learn new skills. They are found in warehouses, office buildings, home garages, and even caves. Located in between all these learning environments is an emerging trend of on-demand mobile classrooms and tech shops that bring the tools to you.

Already an online community called Mobile Makerspace has popped up to help document the open-source initiatives and projects that are happening along the roads. Events, blog posts, and a directory can all be gathered on their website.


Soon more trailers, vans, and buses will be retrofitted for the maker movement. LED’s are going to be installed. Heavy machines will be embedded into the frames of the vehicles and tons of batteries hooked up. The mobile makerspaces will be easy to see from blocks away. Music will follow. Food trucks will be nearby as well. Just keep your eyes and ears peeled for the phenomenon and be ready to jump in when you see it.


Article written by @industrychanger



Mobile Makerspace website:

The Startup Dream: Journeying into the heart of San Francisco pt. 3


We all know those makers who are a few steps ahead of us.

They are producing unbelievably creative prototypes, manufacturing tons of items, and learning cutting-edge skills. They seem to be tapped into an industrial realm of resources and connections that leave the rest of us summing it up by saying, with a sparkle of jealousy: “They got it all figured out.”

But how did they learn those skills? Where did they go and who taught them how?

As a part of a recurring series, we will be following the story of an up-and-coming journalist who has been travelling across the country researching hackerspaces along the way. He has met makers, hackers, entrepreneurs, artists, musicians, engineers, scientists, professors, and various others in-between.


After spending a few nights at The Adelaide Hostel on the corner of Isadora Duncan Lane, our journalist has decided to seek out friends and family in The Bay area. His clean laptop, electrical chargers, and tie-dye tapestry have all been packed away neatly into a black suitcase; which is then thrown in the trunk of his car. The engine revs up putting the vehicle in motion. Onward towards a home!

The next morning, eggs are gathered from a few free-range chickens in the backyard. Breakfast is cooked for everyone at the house. They fuel up for the day, ready to go wherever the winds of change may take them. For our traveller, his adventure begins at a fabrication studio called TechShop only a few miles away.


Inside the building are a variety of heavy machines. A tour is given by an acquaintance named Nick who knew the environment quite well. Laser cutters, plastics, electronics, metal working tools, welding stations and water-jet cutters are all found here. There is even a 3D printing company called Type A Machines testing out their new prototypes.

The scene then proceeds nearby to an event hosted by Momentum Machines who was showing off there shiny new hamburger-making robot. Posted on the wall was ‘The Laws of Thought’ by George Boole, LL. D. In the crowd were lots of people including robotics engineer Michael Sudano and an energy-intelligence pioneer. Many others showed up to taste the wine and try the delicious burgers.

Afterwards, the journey continued North to the small town of Cotati. There was an Accordion Festival going on where the Troglodyte Jug band ‘Thee Hobo Gobbelins’ were playing. The after-party was held at a red house over yonder that sat underneath the starry skyline. Lights flickered and creatures of the night walked about outside.


Conversations of energy surfaced in the morning right before leaving. Little did the journalist know who exactly he was talking to. Eventually, he would figure it out, but only after driving across the country for again for a 2nd time. First he would have to return to Los Angeles to try to find his place among the millions of people there.

The environment he was looking for was located in a warehouse complex called Big Art Labs where two old metro buses where being retrofitted for the food truck industry by the Fojol Bros. They were preparing to travel from LA to DC and invited the journalist along for the ride to help document the experience. His role would change everyday as the trip became wilder and wilder.

2013-08-19_14-05-16_631When ‘The Startup Dream’ returns, we will journey across the country driving through various states encountering many obstacles along the way. There will be flashing lights, elastic highways, and intense fights. 6 people will start the trip, but only a few will make it to the finish line.


Article written by @industychanger

This is a continuation from The Startup Dream: Journeying into the heart of San Francisco pt. 2 (of the Startup Dream online series).



The Adelaide Hostel’s website:

TechShop’s website:

Type A Machines’ website:

Momentum Machine’s website:

The Laws of Thought’s Wikipedia page:

Accordion Apocalypse’s website:

Thee Hobo Gobbelins’ website:

Big Art Labs’ website:

Story of the Fojol Bros:

The Startup Dream: Journeying into the heart of San Francisco pt. 2


We all know about those hackers that are a few steps ahead of us.

They are aggregating massive amounts of data, setting up security implementations, and figuring out how systems work. They seem to be tapped into a mythical universe of connections that leaves the rest of us summing it up by saying, with a dash of envy: “They are rising hackers. They’ve got it all figured out.”

But how did they get there? What series of events led them here?

As a part of a recurring series, we follow the epic story of a hacker who has been travelling across the country zipping from one hackerspace to the next in search of the startup dream. He has opened up doors just to see what lies behind them. He has met several tech pioneers along the way.


This week, we find ourselves just outside the infamous building space called Noisebridge ready to see what’s inside.

The door is locked. And there is a camera staring straight at us. Questions of whether to break inside or not occur. It’s mid-afternoon and tons of people are walking around. Will they notice, if a man wearing a black hat starts fidgeting with the lock? It’s better to press the buzzer instead.



You there!
What is your purpose here?”

Good question. Perhaps, it started long ago, eons and eons away. Zillions of atoms plus molecules have spewed all over the universe. Slowly, they collect themselves forming objects of mass and energy like our journeyman who is standing on the street outside. Could this be his purpose? Is he here to unlock the door?

He speaks. He tells the silent man behind the microphone that he has traveled all the way from Florida to be here. Now, all he wants to do is rest inside.

Suddenly, the door opens; a Korean family vacates the premises at that exact moment…Perfect timing.


As the adventurer moves upstairs, he runs his hands along the wall. Greetings are said while he casually sits down at an open table. Finally, time to do a little coding. His bag is unzipped, and contents are shown within. There are chargers, business cards, clothes, and a little bit of weed that was bought off the street. He needs energy.

But where are the outlets?


Zap! Power is gained from the wires manifesting into electricity pumping in from the grid. It completes an integrated circuit, and moments later, a NodeJS server initializes. A connection is made to an already constructed SQL database. There are no security implementations yet, but data starts streaming in anyways [containing information about every building in the city]. There are GPS locations, correlating addresses, and even kilowatt/hour usages for all the individual meters throughout the city.


And then, something goes horribly wrong. The system crashes causing the unstable infrastructure to vanish into the air like a subtle sandcastle being beaten down by hurricane force winds. All that’s left now is to pick up the pieces and fashion it together into something new…But what?


Time flows by. Exhilarating ideas of intertwingularity focuses in. Stomachs grumble. Hunger wanes in.

There are hackers here. Perhaps they have answers. But who is here?

Questions of purpose are asked leading to the story of three people. Two of them drove all the way from Florida. From Miami in fact. Their car sped through I-10 encountering an immigration checkpoint along the way. Another vehicle wandered onto a higher freeway, with a tired driver who was avoiding unfamiliar stretches of territory to the South.

Each roadtrip varied wildly, yet for some, odd reason, both ended up in the same place at the same time.

There are more people here as well. One guy, code-named Pigeon, has acquired a box of vegetables from the street, tossing together a salad for the homeless. He starts the task all alone, but over time, more people gather to help.

Eventually rot was cut off, leaves were washed, and dressing was made.


And then, out of the corner of the room, entered another hacker. He strolled in quietly under the cover of distraction while the rest pieced together parts from a nearby graveyard. The man was older, but not by much. He looked at the traveller and directly said, “You sir, look like a great leader.”

What? That makes no sense. These two have never met and already he is telling the traveller that he has power within.

“Okay. So what do you do?”

“A lot of things.”

That didn’t help much. The environment felt right though. It was worth a shot trusting him.

“Please, tell me more.”

“Well…I used to be in a secret Atari research group in the late 1980’s. We developed the Star Wars arcade game. I also worked for Robinton Products, Incorporated. Most people have never heard of them, but this company was the pioneer in digital power metering, early portable meter readers, time-of-day power use studies, load shed monitoring/management, all of which were networked together. At first, their meters were not so reliable. But by 1980, they had figured out how to build reliable meters. At this point they started partnering with large meter manufacturers.”

Jackpot. Finally, someone with energy industry experience.

“Cool dude. I also have worked with utility meters. More tracking, and less manufacturing.”

“Nice! You should swing by this accordion festival in Cotati tomorrow. It is where my band ‘Thee Hobo Gobbelins’ will be playing. Come party with us and stay the night. We got music, lovely ladies, and I can tell you more about the energy-intelligence industry.”

“Sounds good. Just have to stop by this other hackerspace called TechShop first and document all the heavy machines. Here’s my number. I’ll let you know when I’m on the way.”

tsNext week, we will learn how to fabricate unimaginably influential prototypes and eat hamburgers made by robots. Come hungry because there will be plenty of sustenance!


Article written by @industrychanger

This is a continuation from Journeying into the heart of Francisco pt. 1 (of the Startup Dream online series).



Noisebridge’s Website:

Atari Introduces Star Wars Game:

Patents by Robinton Products, Inc:

Thee Hobo Gobbelins’ Website:

Thee Hobo Gobbelins’ Twitter:

TechShop’s Website:

The Startup Dream: Journeying into the heart of San Francisco pt. 1


We all know of those startups that are a few steps ahead of us.

They are getting featured in news articles, speaking at tech events, getting multi-million dollar investments, and seem to be tapped into that mythical network of social connections that brings them one step closer to the startup dream. The rest of us sum it up by saying, with a tingle of envy: “They are rising entrepreneurs. They got it all figured out.”

But how did they get there?

As a part of a recurring series, we will be following the epic story of an entrepreneur who has been travelling across the country jumping from one hackerspace to the next in search of the startup dream. He has seen the transformation of an idea into a full-fledge company many times. His experiences have been chronicled through photos, videos, and scribbled notes, which shows the progression of the hackerspace culture all while documenting the success stories of many startups aggregating around these unique co-working spaces.

This week, we dive into the interconnected world of San Francisco where our traveler finds himself visiting several tech communities of creative and innovative people.


It’ all starts during a bright and sunny day in Mountain View, California. There are cars everywhere filling up all the parking spots in the lot and every inch of space on the street, except for one little area off to the side. This allows for a dark car to roll up smoothly and snatch that last spot positioning itself on the outside of a co-working startup environment code-named The Hacker Dojo.

Inside the doors are dozens of individuals sitting in leather chairs and at organized tables busily typing out code for their budding startup ideas. They hope to find a co-founder here, or perhaps someone to invest money into them. They work with 3D printers and play on pool tables. Mounds of Columbian coffee helps to keep the energy focused on the tasks at hand. This gives them the necessary motivation to stay up at odd hours programming databases and various software solutions. The scene is mostly quiet here, as people wait for something big to happen.


Just then, tires screech and rubber hits the floor. That black Toyota Camry that took the last parking space peels out into the road driving sporadically towards the freeway. The driver knows that there is something going on just a few miles north; near the decrepit streets of the open air Mission market. He slides into a parking garage, pays for the fee, and ventures out onto the noisy sidewalk causally strolling passed drug dealers and bloodied butchers.

As our journeyman loses track of time, he stumbles up to a locked door. Behind it lies the infamous hackerspace called Noisebridge where eccentric hackers gather to take apart old computers and build something new. They come from all over the world to experience this founding member in the maker movement.

But why? What makes this place so special?


Next week, we will continue our travels and explore what is behind the Noisebridge door. We will run into goblins, accordions, and heavy machines. Prepare yourself, for it will be quite the adventure!


Article written by @industrychanger



Hacker Dojo’s Website:

The Noisebridge wiki:

Downtown Anaheim’s Art Crawl Experience (the wrap-up story)



It was sometime around Saturday afternoon, an hour outside of LA, when the artwork began to kick in.

Suddenly there was a driving roar all around the city when several food trucks showed up and a group of electronic producers started blasting old school gaming samples into the sunny sky. Without any warning, hundreds of unique individuals gathered at the heart of downtown looking for an art crawl experience like no other.

It all started on the corner of two busy streets where a popup arcade of extravagant gaming references was painted on the walls. Artists like Kasey Taraju, Annathalia Nalapraya, Sam Carter, Cliff Cramp, and Rask Opticon displayed their uniquely created works of art. Many characters bled into the room. They included people like Rincewind, the failed student at the Unseen University of wizards who is often described by scholars as “the magical equivalent to the number zero.” Mario world personalities like Bowser, the princess, Yoshi, and the popular plumber also dropped in from the magical mushroom kingdom to make an appearance within the captivated crowd of onlookers. Even Sonic the Hedgehog zipped by with a spray paint can in hand shaking up the environment with a flash of speed.

sonicWith the art gallery buzzing, just down the road from it were tables and booths lined up on the street with all kinds of work ready for sale. Some artists used paint, others used ducktape. Some used stainless steel, while others chose leather. All kinds of materials were fashioned together intermingling the atoms to form amazingly profound works of art.

It was great. Fractals breathed through a canvas while the Mathematical Mind of a guy named David painted psychedelic outlines under color changing LED’s. Wood shavings hit the floor when a sculptor etched out tribal faces that sat on the ground.  Emotions of awe seeped into the minds of the observers when aliens and disturbing minions where drawn live in front of an attentive audience.


As groups of like-minded individuals danced and frolicked around happily enjoying the popup community that showed up for an evening of pure bliss, it all felt right. The music floated so well weaving in and out of the air while wanderers and explorers asked themselves what art meant to them.

There were two areas setup for different types of bands, and it was easy to float around soaking up the sounds. One place had traditional instruments played by groups of musicians, while the other had orchestration by a collection of DJ’s and producers called Space Circus. They sampled John Lennon and DJ Snake, asking questions about turning down for what and why musicians in Hamburg would take pills around the time when the Beatles were just figure out their unique sound. For you see, “they were all taking these pills to keep themselves awake, to work these incredible hours in this all-night place.” This quote and many others were thrown into the set in-between Atari and Nintendo bleeps and bloops and other gaming sounds giving the environment an experimental type of feel to it while Josh Spoon, DJ Craig Lamont, and Hiko played on stage.

spacecircusThere was even a guy by the name of Joe Koon who made ducktape wallets with various symbols and logos on them. AC/DC was purchased 1st, while a reporter checked out the Anonymous, Disney, Deadmau5, and Minecraft ones. As the press filed down the line taking photos, more booths were discovered. For instance, an eclectic duo of two people, Scott & Janell with Guaranteed Meat, were selling off cigarette cases and flasks with body parts on them. Food was also sold on the side. Pizza, soup, tacos, and French Crepes were the main meals bought from the mobile food trucks. For desert, one could get fudge, brittles, truffles, toffee, nougat, and caramel from The Kandy Jar booth run by a nice family (Beth, Kat & Randy).

The whole evening was exciting! Everyone seemed to enjoy themselves as lots of entertainment, food, music, and fun kept the people happy. Even fire spinners brought an extra sense of heat to the equation. It was definitely worth going, and a totally an event that should be checked out again soon in the future.

mathArticle written by @industrychanger



Downtown Anaheim Art Crawl Experience:

Mathematical Mind of David, the Fractal Artist:

Space Circus:

Guaranteed Meat (Art, Clothing and Accessories by Scott & Janell):

The Kandy Jar:

Moist Snail Poop (Ducktape Wallets by Joe Koon):

Additional Photos:



mario^^ ‘The Plumber’ – by Mike Vetron^^

zz^^ ‘Genesis Prado’ by – Sam Carter


wallets^^ wallets by Joe Koon ^^

mushroom^^ ‘Fear and Shrooming in the Mushroom Kingdom’ – by Rask Opticon





Working Poet Radio questions reality at LA’s Central Library


Ever since Jaron Lanier coined the term virtual reality in the 1980’s, our perception of existence has radically changed. Extravagant and complex worlds have been created in computer simulated environments organized by bits of 1’s and 0’s flying through cyberspace giving us a glimpse into what actually exists.

But what is real? Why are we here? Is there more to consciousness than what is observable and comprehensible?

These are the hard questions that philosophers, authors, and science fiction writers have been asking for centuries. Even now, groups of like-minded people are aggregating together to bounce ideas of reality off each other.

One particular interesting collection of thinkers was brought to the public library in downtown Los Angeles on May 8th, 2014. They discussed their views on existence through their own perspectives and experiences.


First to the stage was Mike Semanchik, who is an attorney with the California Innocence Project. Interviewed by Joseph A. Lapin, a conversation of innocent people locked away for crimes they didn’t commit ensued. Mike questions what reality is like behind metal bars as evidence gets destroyed outside the suffocating walls of a jail cell.

As sexy music by Das Tapes plays, the next guest walks out from behind a tattered blue curtain and sits calmly down in front of an attentive audience. His name is Cosmo Scharf and he is a film school student who started a Meetup group called VRLA that sparked a virtual reality movement in town. Since their initial VR event in April, more meetups have spawned nearby. With immersive multimedia devices like the Oculus Rift readily available, ideas of our existence can be entertained in digital worlds. One can see what it like to be wrongly accused for a crime, or learn from the Civil War by actually dropping into a simulated battle raging in war. You can even learn mathematics by becoming equations or geometric patterns allowing the user to wiggle around as something else.


Up next was author Mark Haskell Smith whose newest book, RAW satirizes reality television. He speaks of lies and forced interactions that happen in the scripting nature of so-called ‘reality’ tv shows. Hollywood has fashioned drinking and soulless skankiness into something that people are striving for. Icons like Kim Kardashian and ‘The Situation’ have deteriorated truthfulness and have become consumer engorging machines that devour everything corporate sponsorship provides.

With these 3 perspectives of law, virtual reality, and reality television, each individual in the crowd could ask themselves what existence really means to them. Whether they related to being locked up with no chance of escape, or wanted to try out the next wearable technology in town, or just knew of the Kardashian family, the thinkers in the room were allowed to deeply reflected on what the criteria of truth is. Some might get lost in the circling thoughts that accompanies the exploration of infinite dimensions and sections of reality. Others might let everyone else do the work. Either way, this event shook the very foundation of what we think we know.


Article written by @industrychanger



The Working Poet Radio Station:

Mike Semanchik’s Twitter:

California Innocence Project:

Cosmo Scharf’s Twitter:

VRLA’s Meetup:

Mark Haskell Smith’s Website:

Here’s the full video of the event (found on this page):

Gobbler and the Great Company host their 5th Jam Night for Music Creators



It has been over 1 month since the last meetup at The SEED Center and so much has changed! Concerts have been attended, producers have been interviewed, and connections have been made. There is so much creativity flowing through Los Angeles coming from all over the globe. Home bases for the music industry, where people of like minds can aggregate together and influence each other, are popping up everywhere. This type of creative environment is exactly what Alex Park and his team have setup through these Jam Night meetups.

The night starts just like any other well-organized event with platters of food and drinks. This time it was dozens of subway sandwiches and bottles of beer. Water showed up later to quench the thirst of those not looking to consume alcohol at this moment. Eating and mingling continues as introductions were made, hands were shaken, and business cards were given.

To warm up the crowd, an Experimental Live Controllerist & DJ named Rahfee Zahkee jumped on stage and began to jam out on an interconnected iPad as he sipped his beer. His dreads and presence gave him a Rastafari type of feel to him. He would tune the frequencies of rhythm and sound to test the limits of feedback from the crowd. Questions like ‘which buttons increase the conversation rates of the audience?’ and ‘how many will notice this subtle change?’ must have floated through his mind as he played his music.


Over time, people started to move into the main room and sit down. Some sat on chairs, others posted up on stools, and more relaxed on couches or stood near the edges in the back. Just then a panelist of 3 individuals positioned themselves up front while a moderator asked them questions. The group included Chris Restivo (Music Supervisor @ Toy Box Entertainment), Jordan Silverberg (Director of Music @ Transit LLC), and Maria Gonzalez. After which, Maria then brought the producer duo Christian Rich up on stage and started a riveting conversation of success.

As Christian Rich left the main stage, they glided to the back and tons of people started to follow them hoping to make contact with them. This led to a slightly vacant scene when Rahfee, Sharin Canta, and Chief Wakil performed their sets one after the other.

When everyone had their chance to share what they wanted to share, Alex Park let everyone know that there was still time to make connections with the influencers in the room. Michael Sebastion Romero showed up. Josh Spoon, iLya O, Eric Sharp and Robert Gee all made an appearance. A guy named Gregory who plays drums conversed with other musicians as well. Even the lovely Graph Gonzales, who was wearing an elegant black outfit with a black backpack accented with gold earrings and a gold jaguar emblem, was surveying the scene.


It was definitely a good night. Tons of connections were made. Music was played, with lots of happy laughter happening in between. Eventually, the people here will get together in the near future to produce some music, start record labels, and just have fun. It is places like The SEED Center and meetups like this that facilitate the industry. It allows people to get together and collaborate, which is all good for the whole city. And what is good for the city, it good for you! Just be in the right place in the right time to make the most of events like this. You never know what will come out of it 🙂


Article written by @industrychanger



LA Music Creators Meetup Group:

Rahfee Zahkee’s Soundcloud:

Chris Restivo’s Linkedin:

Maria Gonzales’s Twitter:

Jordan Silverberg’s Linkedin:

Christian Rich’s Website:

Sharin Canta’s Youtube Account:

Chief Wakil’s Website:

Michael Sebastion Romero’s Website:

Josh Spoon’s Blog:

iLya O’s Website:

Eric Sharp’s Soundcloud:

Graph Gonzales’s Soundcloud:

The Great Company’s Facebook:

More Jam Night #5 Info:

Tech-in-motion shows off wearable technology in Los Angeles



Tiny gadgets are being embedded into the very fabric of our clothes and jewelry. Trinkets and wristbands and headsets and shoes have become intertwingled with technology that can measure steps taken, calories burned, and even hours slept to better our lifestyles. To get people excited about the upcoming trends in wearable devices, Tech-in-motion set up an event off Hollywood Blvd at a place called Ignited Spaces to discuss the technologies being developed.

As the night progressed, a collection of panelists was rounded up to answer questions from a moderator. Standard ideas were asked and each representative talked about what is happening in their field of wearable technology.

One of the most vocal leaders in this fashionable meetup was Syuzi Pakhchyan who is the ‘Accessory Lead’ for Misfit Wearables driving the design of the company. She is also a veteran blogger / author of ‘Fashioning Technology’ which is a research & development studio aimed at designing next generation wearable technologies. She even wore one of the Misfit ‘Shine’ activity monitors that was discreetly placed inside a pristine sliver locket. Her interests in the future include creating a fabrication studio that focuses on design and 3D printing.


Ron B. with Digi DNA was also a panelist and answered some hard hitting questions like ‘what are the wearable tech companies going to do with the data?’ and ‘what kind of privacy will an individual have when strapping on these high-tech monitoring devices?’

In the crowd was some heavy hitting players and upcoming industry leaders as well. Praveen Yalamanchi was present. Jay Zeffern was there as well looking to help out new startups with legal advice. Even an energy-intelligence pioneer was floating around the edges of the crowd soaking in the scene.

Overall, it was a good night filled with new technologies, interesting ideas, and cool little wearable devices.


Article written by @industrychanger



Misfit Wearables Website:

Fashioning Technology’s Blog:

Syuzi Pakhchyan’s Twitter:


Praveen Yalamanchi’s Linkedin:

Jay Zeffern’s Twitter:

Ignited Spaces: