Red, White, Blue & Orange

May 13, 2013

Recently I decided to watch these torture scenes from Zero Dark Thirty with Joshua Phillips, a journalist who spent years researching the effects of torture on detainees and interrogators. He is the author of None of Us Were Like this Before: American Soldiers and Torture. At Joshua’s apartment we recorded a torture commentary track for our imaginary Criterion edition of the film.
We will probably never learn the truth about how we found Osama Bin Laden. But there is one thing I know for certain. We didn’t get the information from Umarov Muhibullah.
Journalist McKenzie Funk ran into Umarov, one of the first men to be released from Guantanamo, while hiking in Tajikistan in 2004.

The Clouds (3 of 3)

May 6, 2013

Our series concludes with some revelations. Metahaven’s Daniel van der Velden and Vinca Kruk use the story of Wikileaks to show us the infrastructure of the cloud and its super-jurisdictional powers. The BBC’s Paul Mason takes us on a wild tour of China in his novel Rare Earth. And a pile of iPhones brings your host a moment of clarity.

The Clouds (2 of 3)

April 27, 2013

Your host continues his journey to the center of the cloud by way of the earth. Rare Earth. Dr. Alex King leads the Critical Materials Institute in Ames Iowa, and he explains how dependent the cloud is on Rare Earth Elements like Neodymium. If we could get inside a Data Center we would find neodymium in all the custom made hard drives, and companies like Amazon are using giant wind turbines packed with neodymium magnets to power their data farms. In fact most of the devices we use to access the cloud: our ipads, our phones, our personal computers – they all use Neodymium too. Dr. Karl “Mr. Rare Earth” Gschneider introduces us to the other 16 Rare Earth elements and we learn that they are key to most of our advanced technologies, electric cars, medical devices, drones! When your host discovers that China controls 95% of the Rare Earth market he decides to go, he hopes to see the illegal mines in the Ganzhou region with his own eyes. We also hear from Frank Tang, a Beijing based analyst at the investment bank NSBO, and we visit a Rare Earth Magnet factory.

The Clouds (1 of 3)

April 18, 2013

The Theory of Everything debuts with a three part expedition to the center of the cloud. In part one Twitter employee number 7 Britt Selvitelle tells us what happened when Justin Bieber joined Twitter in 2009 and how everything had changed by the time the Bieb joined Instagram in 2011. Harper Reed, CTO for Barack Obama’s 2012 re-election campaign, explains why cloud infrastructure is awesome, Matt Wood, Amazon’s principal data scientist, explains how the cloud is changing our relationship with technology, and Parse’s Charity Majors shows us what it is like to work in the Cloud. But when your host attempts to get inside the cloud itself he runs into difficulties…

Making It Real

October 15, 2012

Your host tries to start an American Idol like show about truth starring famous journalist fakers, Writer Aaron Bobrow Strain tells us the story of White Bread, artist Zoë Sheehan Saldaña tells us about making matches, and artists Jonah Freeman & Justin Lowe tell us about the fake books in their new show “Stray Light Grey.” PLUS TMi corespondents Josh Glenn and Chris tell us about White Skin and White Horse.

HOT

August 6, 2012

Writer Bill McKibben uses simple math to explain why the planet is toast. Your host goes to Atlanta to learn about the HOT lanes, Laura Mayer shares a tale about a hot bike and TMI’s Chris tells an impossible tale about America’s #1 Hot Topic. PLUS the debut of brand new regular TMI corespondent Josh Glenn.

We Are In This Together

July 10, 2012

A Derecho grounds TMI’s Chris in an elevator. Peter Choyce discovers blogging and Tim Kreider discovers what it means to be “krazy busy.” Photographer Lowell Handler teaches homeless mentally ill women how to take pictures. And Margaret Atwood reminds your host that the internet is magic. PLUS Humility.

BANG! POW! Comics aren’t for losers anymore

June 20, 2012

Your host talks with Hillary Chute about “comics, philosophy and practice” the comic book academic conference she organized. Also your host digs up some interviews he did in 2004 with a bunch of cartoonists for a piece he never finished Also a studio visit with cartoonist Kim Deitch. PLUS a chat with Françoise Mouly about her new book Blown Covers.

TMILY

May 28, 2012

Your host speeds three curves ahead of the curve others are behind to release TMILY: the too much information social app. TMILY is for those who need some entrepreneurial verve and innovational vim in their lives. And for the skeptics: Tim Hwang tells us about his Hype Up Weekend and Michael Wolff discusses the ridiculously popular piece he wrote on Facebook for MIT’s Technology Review PLUS TMILY’s IPO! Yes, that’s right I. P. O. !!!

That’s Not The Way It Goes, That’s The Way It Went

May 15, 2012

TMI’s Peter Choyce is down in the dumps even though he was an extra on the season finale of Glee. Artist Conrad Ventur experiments with redoing Andy Warhol’s screen tests but Ivy Nicholson makes it difficult. Damien Macdonald tells us about his summer with the French cartoonist Moebius (who passed away this past March). Herbert G tells us about his College feud with Conan O’Brein and Your host takes a few trips down memory lane.

Are we having Mainstream yet? (A conversation with Bill Griffith)

April 24, 2012

Cartoonist Bill Griffith joins Benjamen Walker for an hour long conversation about Underground Comics, Newspaper Strips and Mainstream Culture.

doing it for the LULZ

April 10, 2012

Infamous internet troll Weev tells us all about the day when the Lulz was born. Gabriella Coleman schools us in Lulz theory. Director Brian Knappenberger tells us why he put lulz in his new movie (and why the moral fags hate the lulz). Daniel Hernandez, and Shauna Dillavou tell us about Narco Lulz, and Molly Sauter tells us what the media makes of the Lulz. + TMI’s “Chris” does whippits with Krazy Freddy from the FBI!

POWER

March 6, 2012

Photographer Mitch Epstein traverses the USA in search of American Power, Nichola Raihani tells us about the power dynamics of the cleaner wrasse, Sara Marcus tells us the about the power of Riot Girrrl, Valtteri Viljanen demos Spinoza’s geometry of power, “David” gets caught in Foucault’s web of power, and Joe Turow explains to us how Advertising holds all the real power.

Losing the Plot

January 24, 2012

In search of a plot, your host turns to Martha Alderson the Plot whisperer. Paul Collins tells us about PLOTTO a 1928 plot generating system devised by William Wallace Cook. We also get a high school senior’s view of the plotting of Hemingway’s The Sun Also Rises, plus we check in with TMI regulars Peter Choyce and Chris.

Occupy Siberia (the Truth about Social Media)

November 29, 2011

Your host gets invited to Siberia… strange things happen. PLUS some real advice about social media

Music Beds: Dam Funk, The Fields, and Damu The Fudgemunk

Guided By Voices (tmi version)

October 18, 2011

This week’s show is a series of convergences, but none of them are harmonic. Daniel Heller-Roazen tells us about Pythagoras and the fifth hammer and why Kant and Kepler both considered themselves Pythagoreans. Quintan Ana Wikswo explains why she uses nasty nazi cameras in her art. Nina Mitchell explains what happened when her mind went pop! and Paola Antonelli gives us a tour of her latest MoMA blockbuster Talk To Me. PLUS your host tries to make some money doing experimental medical testing.

Pirates

October 4, 2011

The ancients said that the Pirate was the enemy of all mankind. Mzwakhe Mbuli wants to Shoot the Pirate, and Olga Sezneva says Russia is doing its best (in its own way) to solve the problem as well. We hear from a real Somali Pirate who will be in an upcoming documentary made by David Cálek. Adrian Johns tells us about the birth of the Pirate listener and the death of Pirate Radio. PLUS Tim Kreider on Errol Flynn!

PSEUDONYMS

September 20, 2011

This week TMI explores the world of pseudonyms. Carmela Ciuraru talks about some of the authors she profiles in her book Nom de Plume, Dan Sinker tells us about @MayorEmanuel the fake twitter pseudonym he created for Rahm Emanuel, Andy Carvin, Jillian York and Meg Worley weigh in on #nymwars. And Artist Chris Collins attempts to learn the story behind the handle Tyepilot. PLUS TMI’s special corespondent takes us inside the top secret world of rebranding.

9/12: The 10 year anniversary of America losing its freaking mind

September 13, 2011

Host Benjamen Walker is joined by the journalists Jonathan Kay and Petra Bartosiewicz and they take listener calls. Jonathan Kay is the author of “Among the Truthers” a book about America’s growing conspiracy theory movement and the people who believe in them. Petra Bartosiewicz has been writing about the FBI’s hunt for terrorist networks and sleeper cells. Her soon-to-be-published book is called “The Best Terrorists We Could Find,” an investigation of terrorism trials in the U.S. since 9/11.

Be Thankful For What You’ve Got

August 9, 2011

This week we celebrate the 50th episode of Too Much Information! Your host decides to clean out his drawers and air all the recordings he hasn’t yet used. Peter Choyce explains why some of his problems are first world problems while others are third world problems. Laura Mayer tells us about her history with Weather Problems and Pierre-Louis Colin takes us on the streets of Paris to pass time watching girls. PLUS we hear from two cartoonists: Tony Millionaire and Christophe Blain (the oldest recording of the bunch – July 2009).