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FREEBASSEL SUNLIGHT: Celebrate Bassel’s Birthday

Bassel Khartabil photocopy style freebassel

Our brother Bassel is still not out of Syrian Jail Hell. He is not yet a FREEBASSEL. Our campaign has worked to bring him media attention and some form of increased safety. What has not worked is that journalists are not writing about Bassel because we don’t have novel information and/or journalists are not finding his story exciting enough without some new original sources of information.

Also, today is Bassel’s 32nd birthday. He was born a Gemini on May 22, 1981. This is the second birthday that he has spent in Syrian jail hell. Have you ever spent your birthday in jail, and then for a second time? This is horrible.

FREEBASSEL SUNLIGHT

Rather than add more words, retweets or spamism to the topic of our dear friend, we ask only one thing today. Please help shine some sunlight on Bassel by doing some novel research on his situation, where he is located, and help connect the dots of his situation and life. If you are not in a situation where you have the resources to help with this, then please create some art, design or action about Bassel. Some people are sending happy birthday wishes on twitter. Our friends at Index on Censorship made a blog post to their readership with quotes from Index CEO Kirsty Hughes, Creative Commons founder Lawrence Lessig and more sending their wishes to Bassel on his birthday.

A great FREEBASSEL SUNLIGHT project Niki Korth’s group The Conversation Space just launched today with an open discussion about Bassel by Creative Commons CEO, Cathy Casserly, and staff. Thanks to you all for doing this!

Part 2

Creative Commons reflects on Bassel pt. 2 from The Big Conversation Space on Vimeo.

Elliot Harmon of Creative Commons theorizes about why Bassel's detainment has received scant coverage by major media.

Sound "Thriller-Dramatic" by Toam on Freesound.org

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Commons Congress 2013 and Sage Bionetworks site launch

The 4th Sage Bionetworks Commons Congress kicks off today in San Francisco, and will run from Friday April 19th through Saturday April 20th, 2013. The theme of this year’s Congress is “The Truth of Personalized Medicine“, centering on the future of the Commons as it relates to biomedical research and data sharing.

Standing behind the Commons Congress is Sage Bionetworks, a new and promising nonprofit biomedical research organization based in Seattle, Washington. Sage is working at the intersection of technology, governance, and research in order to facilitate data sharing and reuse in the fields of science and medicine.

Fabricatorz recently collaborated with Sage Bionetworks to refresh their website at sagebase.org. Sage was in need of a simple, legible, and mobile-friendly site that could communicate their work and their vision. Fabricatorz developed a flexible and easy-to-use theme consistent with Sage’s message and spirit.

Sagebase.org Screenshot

We at Fabricatorz are proud of the work that Sage is doing to advance human health and knowledge, and wish them the best at this year’s Commons Congress!

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Openclipart Scissors Logo and Clipart Opportunities

Openclipart Scissors Logo Guide Horizontal

Have you seen the new Openclipart scissors logo? This is one of many updates over at Openclipart. Most important, there are loads of new images that anyone can use freely for posters, business cards, presentations or other design needs.

Also, if you are desiging APPS, we want to talk with you about opportunities! The Openclipart is not only a website, but a full service platform for sharing and storing images. Think of the possibilities in using Openclipart to build a drawing APP for Android, iPhones and iPads. Let’s draw together and share clipart opportunities!

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Bassel Khartabil Wins Index on Censorship Digital Freedom Award

FREEBASSEL #indexawards

Bassel, aka, Bassel Khartabil, just won a big honor called the Index on Censorship Digital Freedom Award for the work he has been doing and for which Fabricatorz and so many friends (like yourself), have been supporting through the #FREEBASSEL and more recent #FREEBASSELDAY campaign. The #indexawards is still happening, but this is a source of the information going out now. Please help us spread the news about Bassel, that he is still detained and that we need your help to get him out of illegal detainment in Syria.

Because Bassel is still in jail, I am in London to receive the award along with Dana Trometer, another FREEBASSEL leader and Bassel friend. There will be a continuation of the FREEBASSEL campaign now, and we will continue to FREEBASSEL around the world with even more fervor.

And please remember as I said in the press release about Bassel’s situation:

Lock-up, Lock-out fails. Locking-up Bassel, only locks-out his personal freedom. By locking-up Bassel, his Syrian captors are accidentally locking-out themselves from the future. From launching Creative Commons Syria, building the Arabic Wikipedia and bringing Internet leaders to Syria, he knew that his free participation in global web communities required concrete contributions locally. For these acts would make Syria a better place. One year later, Bassel is under harsh lock-down. Now, thousands of people that Bassel’s work helped, now help him by spreading the message, #FREEBASSEL. This is what truly builds Syria and connects it to the global connected future. This award proves that his lock-up, is NOT a lock-out of his digital freedom.

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FREEBASSELDAY Recap + Road to Index on Censorship Award in London

#FREEBASSEL

Thanks to everyone who joined the global #FREEBASSELDAY. Paul Keller and Maarten in Amsterdam created FREEBASSEL street art and spread the pieces creatively over Amsterdam, with many Bassel friends like Bjorn and Alper documenting the spread of the graphics, even to Utrecht.

#freebassel posters

The creation of the FREEBASSEL graphic then led to further remixes by Gloria in London, and Been in China.

Pete from Fabricatorz made a huge banner video on the beach in California:

And then Pete went on a horseride to commemorate the day:

Celebrating #FreeBasselDay with my new equine friend and advocating for @freebassel #FREEBASSEL Thank you to @globsterlitter for the T-design @fabricatorz

Meanwhile, CC France’s Melanie Du Long De Rosnay along with our friend Stephanie (aka, @MinnieFractale) held an event, which in turn led to great press exposure.

In Hong Kong, mega supporter Jenny created hundreds of FREEBASSEL fliers, including the famed rainbow headphoned Bassel which she and other people put up around the city:

Rainbow headphone #freebassel in Time square. CWB

Then, Jenny even baked a FREEBASSEL cake, organized a meetup, and spread the FREEBASSEL love to new people:

1st #freebassel cheese cake. @freebassel @kidproto

In Chicago at the #DML conference, Cathy Casserly, Creative Commons CEO released an article in the Huffingon Post titled, “Free Bassel, Free Culture.”

#FreeBassel

Then, super-friend Michelle Thorne and @dtkindler created and put fliers up at the conference yielding the following Philipp Schmidt and Mark Surman photo:

#FreeBassel

(UPDATE) In London, Yourdana and her family made FREEBASSEL rednosed pictures and placed them around their house:

rednosed day screen cap from yourdana

Then, in Beirut a #FREEBASSELDAY flash mob popped up around town.

Even more events took place in San Francisco by a hub of Creative Commons friendz, Barry put together a beer meetup at SXSW, Agata Jałosińska locked down Warsaw by translating Bassel’s wikipedia entry to Polish, new Fabricator Landon had a meet-up in Wichita, Kansas, Spencer put-up fliers all around New Orleans campuses and @moltke and @rejon held a vigil in Berlin at the famed C-Base original hackerspace.

Thanks again to all who represented on the 1st FREEBASSELDAY. We know Bassel felt the love because everyone joined together on this day. We have very complete documentation at the FREEBASSELDAY website and on the updated Bassel Khartabil Wikipedia article.

Index Awards on Censorship Bassel Nominated 2013

Remember, we are now DAYS past the one year since Bassel has been illegally detained. The need for public exposure of Bassel’s situation is urgent. We urge all to focus now on the very public Index on Censorship Digital Freedom Award in London this week for which Bassel has been nominated. Many high profile people have won this award before, and Bassel is nominated for the Digital Freedom category. Please spread the news about this week’s award nomination for Bassel. This award is crucial because it provides a massive spotlight on Bassel’s situation, which could ultimately lead to a #FREEBASSEL!

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FREEBASSELDAY is TODAY.

#FREEBASSEL by Kennisland
#FREEBASSEL, a photo by Kennisland on Flickr.

Today is FREEBASSELDAY! We celebrate our brother together to #FREEBASSEL. Its time to maximize impact, so please: Blog, Tweet, Remix, Share, Cutup, Broadcast, VRT, Promote, Hold a Party, Make a T-Shirt, Bake a Cake or Do a Cheerz for Bassel with your friendz.

Today is the 1 year anniversary of the illegal imprisonment and detainment of one of the original Fabricatorz.

A normal guy, in a bad situation. It could be you! Make something and we will #FREEBASSEL together!

Its #FREEBASSELDAY. http://freebasselday.org

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Bassel Needs Us. Join #FREEBASSELDAY on March 15.

Rainbow @freebassel! Good sign!!! Like rainbow after the rain you can see sunshine. Great future!!! Blessing #freebassel

This Friday, please join Fabricatorz, Creative Commons, Mozilla, and so many people and other organizations in hosting the first #FREEBASSELDAY. The plan is simple, visit and add to http://freebasselday.org. List your city, you (or your group) as the organizers of an event, a venue name and location, time and the action(s) you or your group will take. Please be as public as you can about your action! Some groups are having dinner like in France, other groups putting up fliers in Amsterdam, and more are getting together for a beer to take photos having a cheerz for Bassel. Help us free one of the original Fabricatorz, and one of our best friends, Bassel.

Here is a sample of the press release at #FREEBASSEL:

Announcing The 1st Annual #FREEBASSELDAY on March 15.

We, the supporters of the #FREEBASSEL project are inviting every person, everywhere to make an event on March 15, 2013 with other people in your city in global solidarity to call for the immediate release of open web advocate Bassel Khartibil. This day is the one year anniversary of the illegal jailing of Bassel Khartibil, well known free internet pioneer, software engineer, teacher, husband, family-man and friend. Bassel is a normal guy, in a bad situation. He is now stuck in a Syrian jail cell where he is not able to directly contribute to his local and global communities. We demand his captors to #FREEBASSEL!

Bassel is ALIVE.

Join us to create an activity, event or even a party to celebrate the great work and ongoing life of Bassel. We challenge other leaders of the free internet and open web to create events to make #FREEBASSEL t-shirts, release #FREEBASSEL software, put up #FREEBASSEL posters in your city, to make food together or even to throw a party at a local bar with #FREEBASSEL images and songs playing. Have a cheers for #FREEBASSEL and tweet the picture of your group publicly in your local language.

#FREEBASSEL = #FREEINTERNET

By freeing Bassel, you help to free the Internet. Joining the global movement is simple. List your city below, use the #FREEBASSELDAY hashtag on Twitter, Instagram and other social networks, set a goal for what you will do on this day and spread the word! For those community leaders out there like Bassel, pick an activity, a location for people in your community to meetup and make known the time for the gathering to your community. Then, let’s all have a global #FREEBASSELDAY.

The 2nd Anniversary of Syrian Uprising and #FREEBASSELDAY

If this event is successful we will #FREEBASSEL. Setup your event with an idea below, and have your community #FREEBASSEL:

✳ Update Bassel’s Wikipedia entry: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bassel_Khartabil

✳ Translate Bassel’s Wikipedia entry into your own language

✳ Make our event global: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/March_15

✳ Make #FREEBASSEL t-shirts from the FREEBASSEL Avatar: http://freebassel.org

✳ Print out #FREEBASSEL Posters, and put them up all over your city

✳ Take pictures of your meeting raising your cups to #FREEBASSEL

✳ Create #FREEBASSEL artwork

✳ Write a #FREEBASSEL song

✳ Make a video to #FREEBASSEL, post on the web

✳ Write a blog-post or news article about #FREEBASSELDAY

✳ Release software into the public domain dedicated to #FREEBASSELDAY

✳ Release audio, video, image and texts dedicated to #FREEBASSELDAY

About #FREEBASSEL

#FREEBASSEL is a campaign to bring about the safe and immediate release of Bassel Khartabil from wrongful detainment in Syria since March 2012. He is a well known contributor to global software and culture communities like Creative Commons, Mozilla Firefox, Wikipedia, Open Clip Art Library, Fabricatorz, and Sharism. He is missed by these communities, his family, friends and loved ones. The campaign says, “We will not stop campaigning for him until we see him as a free global citizen once again.”

For more information

Organizing Page: http://freebasselday.org

Official Website: http://freebassel.org

Press Release: http://freebassel.org/events/2013/03/15/free-bassel-day/

Press Contact: info@freebassel.org

###

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Fab Fashionz: Appropriate Appropriation, Not American Apparel

Check out the beginning of a new line of Fabricatorz T’s. Since nothing is more boring than a sterile design printed on a new shirt, I hand picked a bunch of second-hand T’s in New Orleans and slapped the Fabricatorz chop on ’em. Recycling is rarely this hot,  re-contextualizing this fun. More iterations to come as well as a shop where you can cop all this hot to trot Fab Fashion.

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IMG_20130301_151844

IMG_20130301_152956

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Free Your Soul and Your Ass Will Follow

Have you read FREESOULS: Captured and Released by Joi Ito? It’s a Fabricatorz classic, a savior, and a brilliant collection of photography and expository from the major movers and shakers pushing freedom and innovation both online and offline. Despite being published four years ago, Freesouls’ ripples are still being felt as we’re continuously reminded that images and information—and people for that matter—want to move around and dance without pesky restrictions. It’s also the first introduction of Sharism by Isaac Mao in his essay Sharism: A Mind Revolution. We no longer have to worry about the politics of the gift because Sharism is the new sheriff in town, and this time she’s actually here to protect and serve. Serve and pro-gress. Or, as Gucci Mane would say, Anytime You Ready.

But I’m moving too fast. Start here with this nice introduction from one of our own, Christopher Adams, who also served as the project’s editor. Then order a copy of the Boxed Set and/or soft-cover book because they’re limited. Oh the irony. Oh you pretty thing. Get free.

http://freesouls.cc/
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Freesouls
http://sharism.org/
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sharism

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Matt Hope Battles Beijing’s Bad Air with Fresh Bike “Breath”

Breath

Pollution in Beijing isn’t new. Beijing Cream recently stressed this in a write-up titled, China is Polluted. We Get It Already. But creative solutions to the pollution, like this breathing bike machine by artist Matt Hope, are new, especially when compared to the nonsense gimmickry being lobbed around today.

First exhibited in 2012 at Get It Louder (China’s most important contemporary art biennial), Hope’s Breath is a Frankenstein success story. Composed of a Walmart bicycle cobbled together with various found components, such as a wind generator, Ikea trash can and Chinese fighter pilot mask, Breath generates clean air through a electromechanical filtration system when in operation. Despite the fact that 5,000 volts of electricity are screaming between your legs when riding the Breath Machine, it’s clearly the most badass—and realistic—path to clean air in Beijing.

But see for yourself. Check this great introduction to Breath some cool Chinese girls just uploaded to YouTube:

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Fabricatorz Action Quarterly Volume Three

theshimmingep1

Happy New Year, friends!

To help take things up notch for 2013, this quarterly coincides with the official release of The Shimming EP—five hot rock tracks from my two-piece outfit that will get you shimmying into a sweat during the chilly new year.

The Shimming was born out of a circuitous 15 years of participating in what was previously considered “underground music.” From hardcore punk rock shows thrown at a cowboy ranch in southern Utah to diy warehouse events of all stripes around the world, I’ve experienced and seen a lot over the years. Music has been a major force in my life and has propelled me around the world in strange ways—flying to Tokyo for a night to cover cool bands, spending a summer singing karaoke in a small town in the middle of South Korea, dancing (just this last week) amongst the throngs in New Orleans at a second line parade—and it’s time to pay my dues.

This EP is my way of giving something back, a way to share a sliver of the pie that I’ve been gobbling like a greedy fat kid. So here’s the first of several to come. And as I continue to soak up the musical and artistic seeds found in backyard barns, seedy basements and garish galleries, I hope to keep spinning out thoughtful responses and creations of my own that inspire others as others have inspired me.

Enjoy. And by all means, play it loud!

http://theshimming.bandcamp.com/
https://soundcloud.com/theshimming/sets/the-shimming-ep

P.S. We have free download codes for those who want them. Just write and ask!

Jen_Avatar_Fabricatorz_Final

In Fabricatorz news, we’ve had the good fortune of adding Jennifer Yip, a crucial stabilizing force, to join the team. For those of you who already know her it should come as no surprise that we are now running smoother (and looking prettier) thanks to her. For those who haven’t been introduced yet, here’s an interview.  And here’s an excerpt from that same interview where I ask her how she got involved with such a rad, ragtag group:

Spencer: What lead you (or how did you get swindled) into working with this crazed bunch?

Jennifer: Jon Phillips and I worked well together while he was at CC [Creative Commons]. I seem to prefer interacting with unconventional thinkers. Jon and I kept in touch after he left CC to start-up Fabricatorz. We always talked about working with each other in the future. We’re familiar with each of our working styles and skills. It seemed like he knew he’d eventually need help with the operational aspects of running a company, and we kept each other in mind over the past few years. Again the timing worked out, so that I could jump in to try to expand his capacity. I like the get-it-done mentality with smart, laid-back, conscientious team members.

Welcome to the team, Jennifer. It’s great to have you.

Bassel_Face_Avatar_B_W_Text

Other good news, #FREEBASSEL has taken off. In the past month we received the devastating report that Bassel was moved from a civilian prison (Adra) to a military field court where he would have been denied access to both lawyers and witnesses in a closed hearing. This was frightening news because the usual outcome of trials held at military courts in Syria is bleak. Thankfully, with the help of the reports by major organizations like Foreign PolicyAlJazeeraAmnesty International and France 24, and the continued efforts of the #FREEBASSEL community (including fasting!), enough leverage was applied to move Bassel back to Adra. He is still imprisoned but his fate isn’t as dire as it was a few weeks ago.

We, and of course, Bassel, appreciate your efforts to see him free again. There is still work to be done. http://freebassel.org/ is always the best place to start and where you can find links to the latest news and updates, as well as ways to get involved (e.g. using the #FREEBASSEL graphic (designed by  Brad), ordering #FREEBASSEL decals (created by Pete), and spreading the word and staying engaged socially via @freebassel and freebassel.org.

Here’s to a happy and safe 2013.

Cheerz,
Fabricatorz
everyone@fabricatorz.com

P.S. Write us: We love letters, even love letters. Hire us: We also love working. If your project could use the Fabricatorz touch, get in touch. Represent us: Fabricatorz T’s—you know you want one.

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Fabricatorz Action Quarterly Volume Three

theshimmingep1

Happy New Year, friends!

To help take things up notch for 2013, this quarterly coincides with the official release of The Shimming EP—five hot rock tracks from my two-piece outfit that will get you shimmying into a sweat during the chilly new year.

The Shimming was born out of a circuitous 15 years of participating in what was previously considered “underground music.” From hardcore punk rock shows thrown at a cowboy ranch in southern Utah to diy warehouse events of all stripes around the world, I’ve experienced and seen a lot over the years. Music has been a major force in my life and has propelled me around the world in strange ways—flying to Tokyo for a night to cover cool bands, spending a summer singing karaoke in a small town in the middle of South Korea, dancing (just this last week) amongst the throngs in New Orleans at a second line parade—and it’s time to pay my dues.

This EP is my way of giving something back, a way to share a sliver of the pie that I’ve been gobbling like a greedy fat kid. So here’s the first of several to come. And as I continue to soak up the musical and artistic seeds found in backyard barns, seedy basements and garish galleries, I hope to keep spinning out thoughtful responses and creations of my own that inspire others as others have inspired me.

Enjoy. And by all means, play it loud!

http://theshimming.bandcamp.com/
https://soundcloud.com/theshimming/sets/the-shimming-ep

P.S. We have free download codes for those who want them. Just write and ask!

Jen_Avatar_Fabricatorz_Final

In Fabricatorz news, we’ve had the good fortune of adding Jennifer Yip, a crucial stabilizing force, to join the team. For those of you who already know her it should come as no surprise that we are now running smoother (and looking prettier) thanks to her. For those who haven’t been introduced yet, here’s an interview.  And here’s an excerpt from that same interview where I ask her how she got involved with such a rad, ragtag group:

Spencer: What lead you (or how did you get swindled) into working with this crazed bunch?

Jennifer: Jon Phillips and I worked well together while he was at CC [Creative Commons]. I seem to prefer interacting with unconventional thinkers. Jon and I kept in touch after he left CC to start-up Fabricatorz. We always talked about working with each other in the future. We’re familiar with each of our working styles and skills. It seemed like he knew he’d eventually need help with the operational aspects of running a company, and we kept each other in mind over the past few years. Again the timing worked out, so that I could jump in to try to expand his capacity. I like the get-it-done mentality with smart, laid-back, conscientious team members.

Welcome to the team, Jennifer. It’s great to have you.

Bassel_Face_Avatar_B_W_Text

Other good news, #FREEBASSEL has taken off. In the past month we received the devastating report that Bassel was moved from a civilian prison (Adra) to a military field court where he would have been denied access to both lawyers and witnesses in a closed hearing. This was frightening news because the usual outcome of trials held at military courts in Syria is bleak. Thankfully, with the help of the reports by major organizations like Foreign PolicyAlJazeeraAmnesty International and France 24, and the continued efforts of the #FREEBASSEL community (including fasting!), enough leverage was applied to move Bassel back to Adra. He is still imprisoned but his fate isn’t as dire as it was a few weeks ago.

We, and of course, Bassel, appreciate your efforts to see him free again. There is still work to be done. http://freebassel.org/ is always the best place to start and where you can find links to the latest news and updates, as well as ways to get involved (e.g. using the #FREEBASSEL graphic (designed by  Brad), ordering #FREEBASSEL decals (created by Pete), and spreading the word and staying engaged socially via @freebassel and freebassel.org.

Here’s to a happy and safe 2013.

Cheerz,
Fabricatorz
everyone@fabricatorz.com

P.S. Write us: We love letters, even love letters. Hire us: We also love working. If your project could use the Fabricatorz touch, get in touch. Represent us: Fabricatorz T’s—you know you want one.

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Interview with new Fabricatorz member: Jennifer Yip

Jen_Avatar_Fabricatorz_Final

Spencer: Is it Jen or Jennifer?

Jennifer: I answer to both names :) Most people call me Jen though.

S: I’m going to call you Jennifer because it rhymes with my name. So Jennifer, can you give us a little introduction about yourself?

J: I love being a transplant to the Bay Area: I get to experience the west coast fun, beauty, innovation, and liberal attitude while still feeling my strong Midwestern roots. After almost 10 years in San Francisco, I still enjoy listening to classic rock, shooting guns, and riding on boats. I’ve made a career out of helping groups become more organized and efficient. I’m inspired by various forms of music, dance, and other artistic expression.

S: I first met you in Warsaw at the Creative Commons Global Summit last year. What were you doing with CC? And what’s been shaking since I last saw you?

J: At CC, I was responsible for overseeing all HR functions, financial support, and general corporate operations. I liked the fact that my work reached every staff member on the team in some way. I took advantage of opportunities to make and improve upon employee policies, benefits, as well as office culture. I took my role as the Operations Director and Treasurer quite seriously.

After the summit in Poland, my world made a 180 turn. CC’s organizational structure was changing enough so that it made sense for me to move on. I had logged over 6 enrichingly chaotic years with CC. My grandparents’ lives were also coming to an end, during my transition out of CC. So in the spring of this year, I found myself with the chance to take a huge break from work and the time to deal with the loss in my family. The timing of everything was impeccable. I’m now finally ready to work again and make my way toward a new professional path.

S: What lead you (or how did you get swindled) into working with this crazed bunch?

J: Jon Phillips and I worked well together while he was at CC. I seem to prefer interacting with unconventional thinkers. Jon and I kept in touch after he left CC to start-up Fabricatorz. We always talked about working with each other in the future. We’re familiar with each of our working styles and skills. It seemed like he knew he’d eventually need help with the operational aspects of running a company, and we kept each other in mind over the past few years. Again the timing worked out, so that I could jump in to try to expand his capacity. I like the get-it-done mentality with smart, laid-back, conscientious team members.

S: :D. Anything exciting planned for 2013?

J: All that’s planned so far is to celebrate my mother’s 60th birthday in Michigan this summer. 2013 is the continuation of the time for possibilities. I’m looking forward to seeing what new opportunities will come my way over the next few months.

S: Well, welcome to the team.

J: Thank you.

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