A Partnership Decades in the Making

What does WIRED mean to you?

Wired means so much to me, really.  Wired legitimized my own interests in technology and design and inspired me to formalize my career in this space. I was in college when Wired launched and discovering the magazine was, quite literally, life changing. This was a magazine that understood me. For the first time, there was content that acknowledged that technology and innovation were a part of our culture. It was as if Wired was an oracle providing vetted information about what was happening in the world as it related to the blend of music, culture, tech, design – all things that meant the most to me as a curious 20 year old who was trying to figure out what his future looked like.  Specifically, I remember one issue had an interview with Juan Atkins, one of my favorite techno artists/DJ’s and someone who wasn’t ever considered by popular media. Just like my love for early electronic music, which was a blend of music and technology, every issue of Wired addressed multiple areas that interested me. For lack of a better term, Wired is a visionary and fundamental source of information that shaped who I am today.

Why is WIRED such a perfect partner for Isobar?

I was fortunate enough to have conversations with Nicholas Thompson, Wired’s Editor in Chief, as well as the incredible Luis Rossetto and Jane Metcalfe, who founded Wired.  From those conversations, what struck me most was this deep curiosity about all that is possible and, also, the philosophical elements related to the relationship of humans and technology. Isobar is all about understanding and designing things for humans – from measuring the emotional response that people have to the things we create, to our mission of being focused on doing meaningful work that is focused on improving people’s lives.   

There are also other philosophical elements that we share with Wired. One of the most obvious is our collective feelings of rebellion and our roots as small, scrappy and sometimes misunderstood bands of idea pirates. Perhaps that is a little extreme, but we really feel the connection.

What about this partnership excites you the most?

Knowing that an organization that has truly been an inspiration to us all is now looking at us as a partner to help them tap technology in new and interesting ways that will lend to better storytelling and a closer relationship with their readers.  We are the target market, so we get to go off and design things that we’d personally enjoy and find useful and interesting. That is an amazing place to be at as a professional – not only doing what you love, but doing it for a client that you love and respect.  The most exciting part of our relationship is being part of this new feature of Wired in the digital realm: Wired Experimental. I never imagined 25 years ago while I read tales of the future that one day I’d be in a position to help curate and create experimental art and experiences that help to further enhance the content that Wired’s editorial team creates. If I could walk around with an animated .Gif that plays back on my t-shirt, it would be that of the guy whose “mind blown” gesture produces fireworks popping off around his head.   It is early on and we have a lot of work to do, but the “Wired Experimental” content could very well be the hallmark of my career.

What is it that enables WIRED to remain so important to the industry?

I think it starts with reputation and respect. People love Wired and they’ve maintained a consistency in terms of journalistic integrity from day one. They are extremely savvy and cover the full range of pop culture, technology, music and innovation in a way that nobody else can keep pace with.

What is one impact you hope this project has on the industry?

I hope it shows that traditional media properties can evolve and become something new without having to throw out their legacy and change what made them unique. Wired is evolving along with the way their readers prefer to consume content. Once again, they are being bold and stepping into the future unapologetically through the leadership of Nicholas Thompson and his incredible team. My one hope is that they continue to be acknowledged as leaders and visionaries.

What are you most looking forward to at WIRED25?

Incredible conversations with some of the most interesting and influential people in the world of technology and design. It’s an honor to be a part of this event and I can’t wait to watch, listen and learn from what promises to be a historic gathering.

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