The Burner Behind the Holodeck

It’s no longer just Google, Elon Musk, politicians and the military that are looking to Burning Man for creative inspiration. It’s also Microsoft, too. The HoloLens, their latest immersive virtual reality world, adds on to XBox and competes with Facebook’s $2 billion Oculus Rift and Google’s $550 million Magic Leap. And it’s being brought to us by a Veteran Burner.

Business Insider brings us the story of Brazilian Alex Kipman, “inventor”, Burner, and top-rated nerd.

Fast Company named him one of the most creative people in business in 2011, and TIME named Kipman as one of its top 25 nerds of the year

…Kipman’s daily routine at Microsoft is very different from your average workday. In between critiquing secret projects and attending brainstorming meetings, Kipman blocks off several hours a day for “creating,” according to Fast Company.

Microsoft executives testing HoloLensAPMicrosoft’s Joe Belfiore (left), Alex Kipman (middle), and Terry Myerson (right) trying the HoloLens.

Although he’s spent most of his life creating technology, his favorite conference to attend focuses on art rather than tech. Kipman told Fast Company that he gets a lot of inspiration from attending Burning Man. 

HoloGifMinecraftMicrosoft –  What it’s like to use the HoloLens.

Read more:

From Fast Company:

What conference or gathering do you find most inspiring?

Burning Man. I have gone for many years. Met the most inspiring people, art and environment and it’s about as cleansing creatively as you can get. Few things in life give you an opportunity to leave everything behind and go back to a primitive, analog and non-technologic state. This is a source of creativity like no other.

Software is the only art form in existence that is not bound by the confines of physics. You are only ever bound and constrained by lack of imagination. I love that!

Perhaps Burn2, the Burning Man cyberspace Regional in Second Life, will team up with XBox for some killer content. The future sure is going to be different.

image source: PhoneArena

image source: PhoneArena


Related posts:

Burning The Cyber Man

Creating God in the Digital Age

Burn BC Admits Defeat In Battle For Public Domain

Image: Roger Luijten/Flickr (Creative Commons)

Image: Roger Luijten/Flickr (Creative Commons)

The epic fight between Burners in Canada and the corporate conglomerate of Decommodifcation LLC, the Burning Man Project, and Black Rock City LLC (together trading as “Burning Man”) is over. The “800 thousand ton gorilla” won,  crushing the opposition who could not even afford a lawyer.


Napalm Dragon (source: Google+)

Burn BC is Dead
Burning Man’s Decommodification LLC kills Burn BC
Long story short.
I tried repeatedly to settle with them. They changed what we agreed to each time, and never provided my one request.

– A list of marks they own.

After we let it go, they threatens me with a Gag Order.
That I and Burn BC, or anyone who associates with us would…

– Never say anything disparaging.
– Never associate with or speak to Burners.
– Have to get written permission to file any future trademarks.
– Would never talk about this or assist anyone regarding this.
– Give them our websites
– admit they own these marks in Canada.
– turn over rights to my artwork.

I kindly told them to go fuck themselves….

So when I refused to sign away my rights, they killed Burn BC by preventing Burn BC from defending its rights in court.

A couple of months ago the Lawyers for Decommodification LLC (The new American Corporation that now owns the American Burning Man Trademark) blocked Burn BC from defending itself.

They would not allow the directors of Burn BC to submit a defence, suppressing a very lengthy defence I’d put together for the organisation.

(I was hospitalised with a major panic attack from the stress of dealing with this).

The judge gave 30 days for Burn BC to find a lawyer. If Burn BC could have found a lawyer, we have mountains of evidence that could have easily defended Burn BC.

So without a lawyer, the flimsy claims against Burn BC went to default judgement. Without a reasonable defence for Burn BC, the Judge was forced to rule based on weak claims by the plaintiff.

Decommodification LLC didn’t just stop at $10,000 plus $25,000, they also wanted the Burn BC website. There’s NO need for the website.

The Judge ruled $10,000 damages (based on one sided claims, and no defence), and turning over our Burn BC website to Decommodification LLC. I can’t blame the judge, he had limited information, and Burn BC was completely unable to defend itself.

So, it’s the end of an era for me.
Burn BC is dead.

I created Burn BC out of love and respect for my community in British Columbia, but shitty territorial assholes killed it.

Time for me to move onto something else I guess.

I’m glad there’s some resolution, and I’ve at least walked away with my integrity and self respect.

~ Napalm Dragon

You can read more of our previous coverage of the matter here:

Canada Draws Battle Lines for Burner Culture

Help Canada

BURNILEAKS: Bullying The Burners

Embattled Burners Ask Community for Support

Now that Decommodification, LLC has full control over the use of their commercial trademarks in Canada, what will this mean for Burner culture up North? Will it benefit, and flourish? Or will it stagnate, dead in the water with corporate sharks jumping all over it? Expect some panel discussions starring Burning Man’s founders, coming soon…