Rip Mix Burn Sue — a fantastic lecture by Edward Felton

Ah. Every once in a while I come across a fantastic lecturer who illuminates a huge topic. Carl Sagan did that for me when i was at Cornell — I used to play hooky from classes and go sit in on his Astronomy 101 lectures (as did several hundred other folks).

A less known example is Hubert Alyea who was a brilliant Princeton chemistry educator upon whom The Absent Minded Professor was modeled. He was a colleague of my Dad and I grew up listening to Professor Alyea's amazing chemistry lectures (from which the notion of Flubber emerged).

Professor Felton (also at Princeton) is in this league in this lecture “Rip, Mix, Burn, Sue”. The stream's likely to be one of the best hours you can spend if you're interested in the digital media rights issue.

Here are a few topics;

– How Sandra Day O'Connor saved the fast forward button

– A great explanation of how to digitize media

– Technology convergence

– The most important concept in Computer Science

– The Celestial Jukebox and the Napster case

– The Remix culture – Negativeland, the Grey album, Woody Guthrie

– DVDJohn

– The Fritz (Hollings) Chip

And more. The whole stream is about an hour and a half, but I gave up at the Q&A session — the questions were long and badly recorded so I got tired of waiting. Same goes for the introductions — I skipped those as well. The lecture itself is an hour. Well worth every minute.