a year and two days ago ev left Google.

he soon started up Odeo where my podcasts live. the following is from a year ago with some updates

< / e v >

ev williams, the creator of Blogger today stepped down as head honcho, he announced on his blog this evening.

dashing brainiac best known for announcing his company’s sale to google via a two word blog-post hyperlinked to an online newspaper column while speaking on a panel being broadcast over the blogosphere

apparently has had enough of corporate life after being cooped up in the stuffy google offices for the last year and eight months

with nothing to do but rule the world.

“Necessarily, I must express that it’s been an amazing, thrilling, life-changing, difficult, rewarding, surprising, and lucky ride I’ve been on,” the thirtysomething san franciscan posted on his popular blog evhead.

“And ‘life-changing’ is such an understatement,” he continued. “As I said on Blogger’s fifth birthday, for doing the ‘same thing’ for five years, it’s amazing how drastically my life has changed. Not just my life, but me. I’m just a simple farm boy from Nebraska, after all.”

a simple farm boy who some might now call

the most eligible unemployed bachelor in america. [Ed. im told this line is false]

and a headhunters dream.

ev revolutionized the internet by creating one of the web’s first killer aps.

not only was it free, easy to use, and instantly popular,

but it created a global community where the billionares, the homeless, and average people inbetween could all have an equal voice

regardless of what they had to say.

today the president of the web based software company responsible for you reading this explained why he stepped down in a 1250 word light-hearted upbeat friendly post titled “Next?”

under the headline of “Are you pissed at Google and/or are they removing you?” ev wrote the following:

People often want to imagine a conflict. And, I guess if you consider how often acquisitions go horribly, it’s not entirely unreasonable to assume. Unfortunately — I mean fortunately — I can’t help fuel any “Google acquires company, kicks out founder” headlines. Google management pretty much let my team and I retain control of Blogger since we got there. For better or for worse, they trusted that we knew what we were doing and attempted to support it without screwing it up. There are always new issues to deal with when you trade your old ones in. But, all in all, they’ve been awesome. And leaving was entirely my decision. They even offered that I could start something else within the company, if I wanted.

The reason I’m leaving probably comes down to personality more than anything. I’ve just always been stubbornly independent-minded — even when it wasn’t necessarily in my best interest. I hated school. I dropped out of college (never believing I needed a degree because I wasn’t going to work for anyone anyway). I started two or three companies (depending on what you call a “company”) before starting Pyra. (Let’s just call them “great learning experiences.”) I only ever had one real job, and it lasted just a few months, though it was at another cool company (O’Reilly).

When I started at Google, I knew I was giving up my independence and knew I probably wouldn’t like that eventually. So I promised myself I’d stay at least a year. I stayed for a year and eight months and have had a fun, fascinating, and extremely educational time. I’m honored to have been a part of Google for such a historic period.

If I was going to work for anyone, I’d work for Google. It’s, basically, just not in my nature.

in totally unrelated news, google was up today $2.48+, closing at $135.06 [Ed. it’s slightly higher today, a year later

when i first heard the news not long after it was posted, i looked on my buddy list to see if there were any blogger insiders online

there was one who was about to post his feelings about ev’s announcement, which he said they knew was coming any day.

me: holy crap!

him: yep

me: dude!

him: it’s all good though

me: shit
me: when i was at a dot com, they said, there are builders and there are maintainers
me: i guess ev is a builder, for reals

him: for reals

Blogger has been Google’s most newsworthy company lately.

Last week’s cover of the ny times magazine of two gray haired old media writers looking over the shoulder of sassy ana marie cox as she types up her blog wonkette on a laptop was just as symbolic as literal. blogs have even the playing field even among pro journalists.

The Bloggers On The Bus was a feature story about the inclusion of bloggers at both of the major political conventions this summer.

on the same day on the west coast, the Los Angeles Times ran a long op-ed from a successful political blogger who warned of the soon-to-be “commercialized senility” of that circle’s blogs.

indeed, if the la times has begun to count the days until youve sold out,

you’ve made it.

and when you’ve made it

you’re finally free.

congratulations, ev.

continually showing us how it’s done.

h/t metafilter who later was the place where now-former competitor mark kraft of live journal wrote this nice post

Ev and I locked horns on more than one occasion during the time I oversaw the business/strategic end of LiveJournal. The most divisive time was when Blogger was nominated for a Webby Award back in 2001, and LJ — the upstart not-quite-ready-for-prime-time weblog app and choice of angsty teens — challenged Blogger as a write-in candidate.

We were smaller than Blogger, but got the People’s Choice award because of our community features which gave us an advantage on word-of-mouth. Ev and I met briefly at the Webbies. It was a big to-do in San Francisco’s opera house back then, with Sam Donaldson and Alan Cumming as emcees… but it was also the dying days of the dotcom exuberance. Dotcom kids dressed up, schmoozing, with comp’ed champaigne, because someone with a lot more money was willing to pay for it all. Larry and Sergei from Google came in for their award on roller skates and flapping cloaks.

There would be no grand opera house in the coming years, as the dotcom era dried up, and unfortunately there were few kind words shared at the time. So, yeah, there was a rivalry, and even some hard feelings… but only because we all cared about what we were doing.

That said, look at the results of competition. You can get a weblog/journal for free nowadays from dozens of different sources, with software that is easy to interface with, that you can interface with numerous third-party applications, with code which is either open or highly modifiable more often than not, and syndication which is standard.

What started out as a bunch of kids competing over meaningless baubles as a matter of pride turned into a growing, interconnected, user-friendly, generous marketplace of ideas.

So, in the end, no single weblog application won the war. We all did.

Nicely played, Ev. (We should all do it again someday!)

and if i might be able to add my two cents…

ev’s creation has given me the ability to reach thousands of people a day, and a few times ive reached millions.

through blogger i have met amazing people and received remarkable gifts.

as someone who once thought he didnt need a blog since he had a perfectly good website, let me say that FrontPage never got me laid.

and for that i have always been grateful of ev and his team.

a few of whom wrote a few things themselves.

last night i did something that i havent done in a long time

twins? no.

i went to an LA Press Club event.

a mixer.

a social soiree.

an outing.

a panel discussion.

a place not frequented by barely legal young ladies.

and i loved it.

i went because in my upcoming new gig with Buzznet, part of my duties, so i believe, will be to go out into the world and help hype the product.

i also went because i have had very nice experiences at the LA Press club events and i like their mixture of libertarian politics, intellectual conversations, polite debate, and free booze.

last night was sponsored by my favorite blog the ScienceBlog.com, run by my bro Ben Sullivan, who was not in attendence because he was in south america with his magnifying glass, or something.

but his spirit was there.

one of matt welch‘s cohorts from Reason moderated a three-person panel who debated the importance of Federal support of Science, and its impact on the development of scientific breakthroughs. completely fascinating because i had never even thought of the influence of politics on science.

boy was i naive.

the two most debated examples were stem cell research and missle defense. one being pretty impossible to acheive (yet it is fully funded by the government) and one is far more likely to acheive (yet it is sparsley and reluctantly funded by this administration).

i sat comfortably between the ravishing Bonnie Bills and the always wonderful Mark Cridland. Bonnie whispered that she was afraid that i was being offended by the scientists’ criticsms of the american evangelicals who stifle science because it may destroy their faith, however i was worried that Crid might be offended because they were bashing Bush pretty hard.

i was not at all offended because when true Christians (and not these fake ones) finally take power, they will cease with this faux drug war and allow the natural herbs grow as the Lord intended and our elderly will be able to ingest medical mary jane as we californians voted that they should.

i had such a lovely time i promised that i would come back to another event sometime soon and i meant it.

as in certain situations like church or a baseball game, or a combonation: a springsteen concert, sometimes its just super cool to be surrounded by like minded intellegent people, in this case those who read books and remember what theyve read and write alot and are genuinely interested in the topic at hand – which last night was based in discoveries.

the woman panelist was asked why the LA Times, who she used to worked for doesnt put scientific breakthroughs on the front page any more, and everyone wondered allowed, yeah, why not.

and i thought, shit the busblog definately doesnt do that, even though sometimes thats the coolest news of the day.

so i promise to you that i will read ScienceBlog closer and more regularily so i can be better than my local rag and spread the good news of the day more freqently.

Update: Hear Matt Welch on the Radio in Calgary on The World Tonight with Rob Breakenridge on CHQR 770 AM, at 6:30 pm today, talking about Superdome fantasies and other Katrina-related stuff.

rove is about to fall on his sword + gray matters + gorilla mask + city rag

in the sloppy orgy of rock n roll

only the fool is king. ask puffy, ask korn, ask flava flav. the wind might howl, kicking up plastic grocery bags that once served mankind, but now only dance with the forgotten sports page in front of an east hollywood titty bar advertised to neighbors as Cherry’s but known to the undercover miscreant as home.

her name was lola, she was a show girl. see thru high heels up to there and blonde streaks all through her hair.

tony sat at the bar. alone.

normally the ladies’ favorite with a joke and a laugh and a welcoming lap, this afternoon he mindlessly stirred his rum punch with the tiny plastic flamingo and stared through his fake glasses and followed the trail of condensation down the dirty glass, down the curvy side, down into the puddle at the base slowly soaked up by the generic napkin that had the word “napkin” imprinted in cursive.

napkin tony thought to himself. napkin. what sort of name was that, what did it mean. where did it come from. latin?

lola lifted her g-string and released the hard earned dollar bills and counted them one by one. organizing them by denomination, lining them up neatly on the bar, folding them and rubberbanding them and placing them finally into the tiger print mini purse that hung close to her heel.

buy you a drink, stranger? she asked tony and winked at him.

he didnt even look up. just bit his bottom lip and traced his finger on the glass.

disco lights gave the illusion of motion on the ice that melted in the tumbler as kid rocks american badass blared in the nearly empty club. women’s pro beach volleyball, muted, gave color to the unwatched zenith big screens as the ceiling fans twirled lazily and rosalita slapped the first hand away from her cooch.

lola leaned over and put her heavily made up face on the xbi agent’s shoulder and tried to see the world from her hero’s perspective. what fascinating mystery was buried in the alcoholic refreshment she wondered, what was visually more interesting than a dozen latinas, four asian cuties, three barely legal blondes, and the nastiest black girl and her micromini catholic girl skirt as they all waited for the whistle to blow and for the construction to stop and for the party to get started proper.

he thought about baseball. specifically the looming strike. motely crue’s girls girls girls signaled the end of the round of two-for-one lap dances and lola spun around in her stool and scouted out the gentlemen to see who she would choose to enjoy her dancing next.

tony sipped from the skinny straw and lola whispered that she had a line of crystal meth if he wanted it and he told his napkin no thanks.

body shot?

gracias, mi bella senorita. no.

and she tapped her feet to the disco beat and the ladies of the house said ho.

ho ho.

finally the sadness was broken up when the bubbly korean teen called lei gently pulled back tony’s tshirt collar and dragged her tongue stud across his exposed collar bone up the base of his neck around his ear lobe and behind his head sending shivers and awakening the giant within.

there was an unusual silence.

and then the familiar three swats of a high hat

of ac/dc’s back in black.

and indeed he was back.

just like that.

from my first blog book “Blook” (no longer in print), my third blook “Stiff” will be available on 10/13

raspil + deadly unicorn + krista + ciavarro