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A Conversation with Rob Malda - Part One of Three (Video)

Roblimo posted about a year and a half ago | from the it-all-started-with-a-bored-college-student dept.

The Media 72

Slashdot's Glorious 15th Anniversary (link to bad fireworks video) is coming up in October, so Jeff 'Soulskill' Boehm and Rob 'samzenpus' Rozeboom decided to have a chat with Rob Malda. Back in 1997 Rob founded a website named Chips & Dips that later morphed into something called Slashdot, which has been (as the saying goes) "often imitated but never duplicated." Since leaving Slashdot, Rob has been doing this, that, and the other, but we'll let him tell you what he's doing in his own words. Note: This is an audio interview with some semi-interesting photos laid over it as a slide show, so you might want to listen to it rather than watch it. Parts Two and Three of the interview will be along in the next few days.

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72 comments

Questions to Rob Malda (anyone can answer) (1)

drinkydoh (2658743) | about a year and a half ago | (#40919847)

Why you proposed your wife via Slashdot?

Read all about how governments use brain pattern matching abusively [blogspot.com].

Re:Questions to Rob Malda (anyone can answer) (3, Informative)

dkleinsc (563838) | about a year and a half ago | (#40920541)

Because it was Valentine's Day, he wanted to do something both geeky and romantic, he knew Kathleen would see it, and she said "yes".

Re:Questions to Rob Malda (anyone can answer) (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#40922331)

Why?

Chips and Dips (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#40919891)

Good to see Soulkill and Samzpenis still keeping the Dips part alive.

Do you support the constitution (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#40919925)

Or are you going to vote for Obama?

Re:Do you support the constitution (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#40921695)

Or are you going to vote for Obama?

Do you support the constitution or are you going to vote for either party?

Re:Do you support the constitution (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#40925811)

Attention leftist free software hippies!

You live in a dream world, I'm afraid, and 20 cents is just the beginning. You don't think Papa John's is going to buy them health insurance do you? He's going to pay the much cheaper Fine/Tax. And his employee's still won't benefit one single iota.

In fact, Obama's 6000 new IRS agents will find these employees and take away their income tax refundable credits because they still won't be able to afford the insurance that is now MANDATORY. If they couldn't afford it before, they won't just suddenly find the money to buy your beloved Obama's individual policies.

Please try thinking now and then beyond your love for Obama.

Have you ever noticed the average age of a chain pizza store employee? 18, 23 maybe? These are the young people that Obama is now going to penalize - TAX - for not buying the MANDATORY Obamacare package. They are young and healthy and the only reason Obama and the Spread the Wealth crowd demand their participation is that they will now be paying for insurance that they didn't need before and will not use now.

It is this very group you see in your "dreams of my father" fantasy world that Obama is going to take money from that they didn't have to pay before. AND THEY STILL WON'T HAVE HEALTH INSURANCE. They'll just have to pay their own fine at tax time.

For goodness sake, take a step ouside the box!

You should stop checking your brain at the alter of the first "not completely White" President. Obama is a disaster.

Re:Do you support the constitution (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#40928895)

Obama is doing fine, disaster presidents were Nixon and George Bush (both of them). Haters gonna hate no matter who's in charge, but I'm sure you could do better job. Just run for president come next round. It's a democracy, after all.

Sorry, Did Not Listen (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#40919933)

Why post an audio interview without a transcript? Way to know your audience.

Re:Sorry, Did Not Listen (1)

avandesande (143899) | about a year and a half ago | (#40920837)

RTFA == WTFV

Mod parent down! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#40921767)

Program much?

The == operator is used for logical evaluation and is not used for assignment or declaration. So, by saying RTFA == WTFV , you're basically asking us to evaluate whether RTFA is equal to WTFV. I'll return zero for that.
 
This is one of my pet peeves around here. The thoughtless use of the == operator and the annoying @$())(JASDNO CARRIER fad.

Re:Mod parent down! (1)

avandesande (143899) | about a year and a half ago | (#40921931)

Get out much?

Re:Mod parent down! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#40922325)

Yeah. As a matter of fact, I have just returned from an evening at the clubs. After the clubs, I spent a half-hour with a woman whom I picked up, and I have now returned to my flat to check email and relax.

Now for dessert, please munch on my nuts.

Re:Mod parent down! (1)

Chelloveck (14643) | about a year and a half ago | (#40922763)

No, the use of == is correct here. He's certainly not assigning the value of WTFV to RTFA. He's stating the equivalence of RTFA and WTFV. Since the article is in video form, the only way to read the article is to watch the video. If you've watched the video, you've read the article. If you haven't watched, you haven't read. They can both be true, or they can both be false. Either way, (RTFA == WTFV) evaluates to true.

It would be better to write RTFA â WTFV, of course, but slashdot doesn't believe in unicode and mangles the three-bar STRICTLY EQUIVALENT TO glyph I put between RTFA and WTFV.

IDIOT. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#40923237)

The GP already made it CLEAR that the == operator is not a statement of equivalence. Go back to grammar school, you dolt.

Re:IDIOT. (1)

dotbot (2030980) | about a year and a half ago | (#40934121)

The GP already made it CLEAR that the == operator is not a statement of equivalence.

The particular choice of operator for equality in a predicate cannot influence whether the predicate is being logically asserted, i.e. holds for all valuations, or is just a free-standing formula. To make it clear that it was an assertion, it should have been written with a turnstile in front:

|- RTFA == WTFV

Re:IDIOT. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#40951809)

You slashdotters are stupid. ITT Tech first-years, all of you. Double equal signs are NEVER used free-standing.

Re:Mod parent down! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#40933795)

Actually, dude, that was the joke where you're supposed to pick up on - the fact that they should evaluate the same. Learn 2 humor dude.

Re:Sorry, Did Not Listen (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#40921305)

They know nobody will RTFA, so probably they know their audience very well.

Re:Sorry, Did Not Listen (1)

lorenlal (164133) | about a year and a half ago | (#40945145)

Plus, I'm pretty sure a transcript would result in a TL;DR, so I'm concurring.

Re:Sorry, Did Not Listen (1)

noh8rz6 (2689737) | about a year and a half ago | (#40925257)

tl;dr. I can't stand real-time information flow - too slow, I get impatient.

I wonder.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#40919961)

Who really cares? And there seems to be a lot of retrospectives about him and Slashdot lately.

can't watch vid (Linux Mint) (1)

Penurious Penguin (2687307) | about a year and a half ago | (#40920115)

Running Linux Mint 13 (Mate ed.) and it plays neither on firefox or midori. Is there another source to watch this? wget -O taco http://player.ooyala.com/static/cacheable/444fd7076af0334709af3684f7f0e127/player_v2.swf [ooyala.com] -- (fail). Any suggestions?

Re:can't watch vid (Linux Mint) (1)

jones_supa (887896) | about a year and a half ago | (#40920315)

Here we talk all day long about open formats but even Slashdot shows that at the end of the day Flash is the bees knees.

Re:can't watch vid (Linux Mint) (1)

Penurious Penguin (2687307) | about a year and a half ago | (#40920521)

Might just be an awkwardly configured system on my part, but youtube and even vimeo work well enough. I'd never heard of ooyala before posting the parent.

Re:can't watch vid (Linux Mint) (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#40921557)

What? What? That's nonsense. It's not a configuration issue. Haven't you heard? Linux is the most advanced OS and it works out of the box everytime. Don't question it, it's teh Linux!!!!onehundredeleven!!! You must be a big Windoze l0z3r....

Re:can't watch vid (Linux Mint) (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#40920359)

How do you feel about your fancy Linux now? No one uses that crap anyway.

Re:can't watch vid (Linux Mint) (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#40933877)

I actually use 'this poop'. Different distro - and it's totally the shit.

Compressed SWF format not supported (1)

dgharmon (2564621) | about a year and a half ago | (#40920967)

It plays here OK on Firefox/Chrome under Ubuntu 12.04. When I try and play in in xine/vlc/mplayer I get "Compressed SWF format not supported".

No One Give a Shit (0, Flamebait)

sexconker (1179573) | about a year and a half ago | (#40920145)

No one gives a shit
Slashdot is the pits
Why are you such a tool?

Fuck your ugly face
You fucking sold this place
And now you
think you're cool?

One last question now
Can you tell me how
To profit
off of fools?

Is it astrotruf?
Paid-off trolls and smurfs?
UI that
ignores the rules?

I've got hate and spite
For this shitty site
Slashdot sucks
AC RULES!

Who? (3, Insightful)

jfengel (409917) | about a year and a half ago | (#40920153)

Oh, it's all so 2011.

Re:Who? (2)

jokkebk (175614) | about a year and a half ago | (#40928377)

I have to say I'm not certain why all these "Rob Malda gets a job" and "Rob Malda discusses Reddit" articles that have appeared since he resigned from Slashdot are relevant news for nerds. I've been following the site since the nineties, and with the exception of few posts (like the proposal mentioned earlier), the editors were never a focus in the posts, but the news instead.

I would assume the people who wanted to follow CmdrTaco more carefully could, like, follow his personal website or something. At least to me, the Slashdot culture has never centered around any figureheads, but the community and commenters (and of course Rob Malda was an integral part of both for a long time).

At least this three-part interview series could've been timed to occur more closely with the 15 year anniversary, now it just feels like free PR push.

Will there be meetups like we did for 10? (1)

Chas (5144) | about a year and a half ago | (#40920181)

Just checking.

Had a blast at the last one.

Re:Will there be meetups like we did for 10? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#40920251)

Yep. Except it's not a meetup, it's a hookup. And you don't need a special occasion. Just install the grindr app on your android phone to meet like-minded slashdot and linux users.

Re:Will there be meetups like we did for 10? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#40921741)

Yep. Except it's not a meetup, it's a hookup. And you don't need a special occasion. Just install the grindr app on your android phone to meet like-minded slashdot and linux users.

Thanks for that one /sarcasm ...from now until the end of time, Google is going to be aware I searched the android market place for 'grindr' and think I'm a queermo.

Re:Will there be meetups like we did for 10? (2)

TheRaven64 (641858) | about a year and a half ago | (#40929159)

Thanks for that one /sarcasm ...from now until the end of time, Google is going to be aware I searched the android market place for 'grindr' and think I'm a queermo.

So, which of the following are the reasons that this worries you?

  • You're in the closet and don't want to be accidentally outed by Google.
  • You're violently homophobic and frightened of anyone thinking you might be gay.
  • You are worried by the thought that Google's database about you may contain errors making it less valuable when they sell the use of your personal information to advertisers.

Re:Will there be meetups like we did for 10? (1)

clovis (4684) | about a year and a half ago | (#40921127)

And should it be limited to people with slashdot ID's of 4 digits or fewer?

Re:Will there be meetups like we did for 10? (4, Funny)

Fnord666 (889225) | about a year and a half ago | (#40922713)

And should it be limited to people with slashdot ID's of 4 digits or fewer?

Yes it should. Just be sure to schedule it in time for the early bird specials and wrap it up before 8pm so everyone can get to bed on time.

Re:Will there be meetups like we did for 10? (2)

Anthony (4077) | about a year and a half ago | (#40940105)

Naturally yes. I like the early-bed time, but the sun never sets on Slashdot.

Re:Will there be meetups like we did for 10? (1)

sandman71 (95834) | about a year and a half ago | (#40933349)

Way to discriminate against people with 5 digits. sheesh! :P

Re:Will there be meetups like we did for 10? (1)

Chas (5144) | about a year and a half ago | (#40936989)

Well SOMEONE needs to call you people out on your conspicuous consumption of extra digits!

What does it mean 'what would it become'? (2)

roman_mir (125474) | about a year and a half ago | (#40920243)

I mean what do you think /. is? Maybe it's something that I don't understand at all, it's a forum, it's an advertising platform, it has themes that are supposedly geared towards technology (but also plenty of flaming... well, that's an advertising technique).

But I don't get it probably, what does Malda mean by 'what it will become'? What could it become, except diluted over time? It's like a newsgroup, maybe it's IRC with memory, but what is he talking about?

Re:What does it mean 'what would it become'? (1)

TaoPhoenix (980487) | about a year and a half ago | (#40921189)

He got a class on "Business Speak" somewhere. When you leave a major undertaking, presuming it's not a sinking ship, you speak of it in multi-tenses.

Re:What does it mean 'what would it become'? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#40923385)

I mean what do you think /. is

well, based on your posts, it is apparently a recruitment board for your cult. a long time ago it used to be a place to talk about technology but then it got run over by the likes of yourself and other like-minded adherents to your religion.

who cares (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#40920283)

Taco is gay.

Slashdot's decline and irrelivancy (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#40920725)

They should ask him what he thinks of Slashdot's decline due to an increasing moronic userbase. This site used to be about open source advocacy, yet now half the people on here are using closed source Apple products. Will Slashdot even be around in a year or two?

Re:Slashdot's decline and irrelivancy (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#40921003)

Yeah! And the fuckers can't spell either!

Re:Slashdot's decline and irrelivancy (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#40936255)

And the telemarketers can't spell either!

FTFY

Re:Slashdot's decline and irrelivancy (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#40922037)

They should ask him what he thinks of Slashdot's decline due to an increasing moronic userbase. This site used to be about open source advocacy, yet now half the people on here are using closed source Apple products. Will Slashdot even be around in a year or two?

What? Why with innovations like SlashBI [slashdot.org], SlashCloud [slashdot.org], and SlashDatacenter [slashdot.org] I'm sure Slashdot will be around for many years to come!

But seriously, does anyone read those 'channels'? Each one has one or two guys writing a dozen or so fluff pieces a day, and I'm not seeing much in the way of comments the one or two times I've bothered to check them. and they reek of corporate meddling.

I miss '97 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#40920957)

Gosh remember '97? Back then a post this would have likely read: "this, that, and the other." instead of the grammatically incorrect and awkward "this and that and the other,"

25 comments @ 2:59 ? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#40921159)

Wow. Just wow.

In the olden days this would have been a a 1200 post troll-fest.
Now the trolls don't even care Taco.

Re:25 comments @ 2:59 ? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#40922735)

Damn straight, you gerbil.

Hugs and kisses,

Juan Epstein

You in5ensitive clod! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#40921977)

move any equipment A8d she ran

Low comment count explained (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#40922193)

Three hours after this is posted and there's still less than 40 comments, half of them are trolls or off topic. Kinda makes you think that no one really cares about Taco... and that Slashdot is falling apart due to techno-political ramblings that only get comments from fanatics so they can pound their chests.
 
But, hey, it's all about page hits anyway anymore. I guess Slashdot found it's bread and butter.

Someone needs to learn how to use compression (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#40922821)

This audio is RAW - any chance for parts 2 and 3 we can get some compression? I'd be more than happy to help!

Ah, 1997. (0)

Kaz Kylheku (1484) | about a year and a half ago | (#40923065)

I think I joined in late 1997 or early 1998.

Four digit user ID club. :)

Re:Ah, 1997. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#40923479)

i could have had 4 digit user id if i hadn't already decided to never sign up to another site that demanded a signup.
the last straw was when microsoft bought hotmail. and it's all been downhill from there.

and i've been proudly lurking all this time.

My review of Rob Malda. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#40923227)

No intelligence. Less pizazz than a common boor. Lame.

Dumb and dumber (1)

damn_registrars (1103043) | about a year and a half ago | (#40923355)

Malda left after destroying what used to be a good website. Now, we let the resident king of editorial failure [slashdot.org] go and interview him. What, exactly, do we expect to be learned from this? Or is samzenpus just trying to get interview tips from Rob so he has a chance at a job after this site finally dies?

Well... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#40930307)

With sites like Digg (up til a couple years ago) and Reddit (nowadays), Slashdot has become something rather, behind-the-times. Most news stories on Slashdot tend to be days behind what's already on Reddit.

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