“I prefer to think I’m just a man, not a poet part time, business man the rest. This is a fortunate thing, considering how inconsiderate the ravens are. I don’t divide my life, just go on living.”
Vice President, Hartford Company (surety bonds)
Winner, 1955 Pulitzer Prize in poetry
I like ideas and creativity in all forms; I especially enjoy working with other creative/talented individuals to come up with new stuff. In the past, I’ve started a rock band, founded a tech startup, and been an editor of a small non-profit newspaper. It seems random, but you’d be surprised how similar it all looks from the inside.
I was born and raised in Seattle, whose sports teams I will always root for. I currently reside in San Francisco, CA.
I have some slight obsessive tendencies, and these have driven the three major phases of my life so far. In reverse order:
My current focus is as founder of a startup focused on 360 viewing/sharing of immersive media in 2d and VR (Momento360). This is my second tech startup; the first (and what brought me down to the Bay Area) is Captricity, which I started with my friend and classmate Kuang Chen. Before that, I worked at Microsoft on MSN and Bing Maps; I am a proud alum (class of 2005) of the University of Washington Department of Computer Science and Engineering.
I started the band Harvey Danger with my dear friend Aaron Huffman during the early 90s music boom in Seattle. We eventually cobbled together our first album which unexpectedly yielded a radio hit (“Flagpole Sitta”) and a gold record. In total, we released three albums (“Where Have All the Merrymakers Gone?” (Slash/London, 1998), “King James Version” (Warner/Sire, 2000), “Little by Little” (Kill Rock Stars, 2005)) and one compilation (“Dead Sea Scrolls”). You can find these on your favorite online music store/streaming service; there is also a bunch of stuff available for free on harveydanger.com (go to the downloads section).
We self-released “Little by Little” under a freemium model in 2005 which resulted in some media attention, most satisfyingly for me, resulted in this article in the Wall Street Journal online, where I appear in the same article as Radiohead (about the release of “In Rainbows.”) That was almost as cool as when “Weird Al” Yankovic did a polka version of “Flagpole Sitta.”
We ended the band in 2009; Aaron passed away in March 2016.
I started out at the University of Washington on a trajectory headed for medical school (via Computer Engineering, natch) but got diverted into the field of journalism when I started working at the student paper, The Daily of the University of Washington, which is pretty much where my real undergraduate education happened (it certainly wasn’t in class, since, well, I pretty much stopped going to class). I spent a summer in Tokyo covering the World Track and Field Championships for the Daily Yomiuri and had an internship at Newsday before taking a job as the Editor/Publisher of The International Examiner, where I got a pretty healthy dose of the reality of running a struggling publication.
Other biographical notes
You can contact me via one of the above methods, or try:
jeff [–at–] jeffjlin [–dot–] com