All of these are actual references to James "Kibo" Parry by name, and not merely coincidental appearances of the string "Kibo" (as in the name of the peak of Kilimanjaro.) I would appreciate it if you tell me of any others you see -- lately a lot of newspapers and magazines have been printing articles about Kibo without bothering to interview me (they paste together "facts" from two other articles, and if it's in some newspaper in Reykjavik I'll never know about it.) I am generally not counting articles which were only published electronically, or advertisements such as the unaired commercials for a store that sold Doc Martens. Some dates are uncertain until I have the time to do more research.
I have lovely high-resolution scans of many of these articles that I'll make available for downloading once I get this site shaken down.
THE STARK FIST OF REMOVAL, around 1990. Wrote doctrine for the Church of the SubGenius -- a piece of fiction published in their house organ, The Stark Fist Of Removal. Having successfully infiltrated a competing cult, my work there was done, and I moved on to work on becoming a Mason. (Still no luck there. They just don't give freebies.)
WIRED magazine, 9/93. In the third issue of Wired, I was the centerfold. The one-and-a-half-page-wide photo of me was taken by the talented Webb Chappell on my birthday; he did a double exposure to make me transparent. There's a brief article by Amy Bruckman. It says "KIBO IS GOD" in big letters. But I was just too hip even for Wired, so two issues later they declared me "Tired". Click here for the article on Wired's site.
MIDDLESEX (Massachusetts) NEWS, 9/27/93. In a great "Conversations With Fred" column, "Kibo and Serdar test computer patience." It discusses how both Serdar "Zumabot" Argic and I post off-topic stuff all over Usenet but get different reactions. "When it comes to these two, Usenetters can run, but they can't hide..." Fred says, re me, "...whatever else you think of him, you have to admit he has a sense of humor," because I said I was "some bozo."
(Schenectady, New York) DAILY GAZETTE, 10/31/93. This article, printed on Halloween, is based on one obtained via wire-service from the Baltimore Sun... a month before the Sun printed it. (I don't understand either, but these are the dates of the papers, and the byline always credits the Sun.) "Want to be a computer hacker? Then learn the lingo." The bulk of the article is the same as the Sun article (below), except the paragraph of exegesis has changed: "...here are a few terms you need to be conversant with before making the leap from lurker to net.personality."
BATLTIMORE SUN, 11/27/93. "Computer Chatter" by J. D. Considine says, "Tired of being a lurker, yet afraid of being flamed as a newbie because you aren't sure what computer people mean by terms like 'lurker,' 'flame,' and 'newbie'? Well, here's a little lexicon that will hip you to the latest in computer language." Point one: Never learn slang from someone who wants to hip you to the groove, dude. Point two: Never trust a newspaper article that's pasted into the middle of a Macintosh screendump where the hard drive is named "HackerMac". Point three: 95% of this text is borrowed from, without credit to, "The Jargon File" aka "The New Hacker's Dictionary" (which had implied my name defives from an acronym, which it does not.) After explaining that "C" is a programming language which is better than MS-DOS (why not compare it to movies, too?), it explains "C programmer" as "One who programs in C language; a brainiac."
MICROTIMES, 1/5/94. In the BMUG (Berkeley Macintosh User's Group) newsletter's "Predictions for 1994", they discuss whether or not PowerPC-based Macs will make Microsoft and Intel go out of business. Bernard Adobe says: "Half of [Internet users] will be pitted in a flame war against the other half in a huge flame war on Usenet, which will be known as the first Usenet World War." (BTW, Iain Sinclair had also predicted a "U.S. versus everyone else" flamewar in 1993.) Elsewhere in the article, Bill Woodcock says, "Electronic Democracy will take hold, and Kibo will be elected to public office." Then there's an interpolation by the editor explaining who I am, and making the baffling claim that alt.religion.kibology has 21,000 readers (it was on the order of four times that at the time, if the Usenet Readership Reports were to be believed.) The badly copy-edited article then goes on to discuss "P links", which is apparently what happens when you spellcheck "PPP" (Point To Point Protocol).
MAGE: THE ASCENSION: DIGITAL WEB role-playing game manual, 1994. They asked for permission to include a deific character based on me. "Kibo is a mage of great power. Many think him to be omniscient. Some think that he is an AI or Turing Machine." Like all role-playing game books, they've pasted in pieces of back and white fantasy art randomly, so I'm not sure if the disembodied head on the adjacent page (he's saying "capital omega") is supposed to be me. He looks sort of like Davros from Dr. Who.
NEWMEDIA magazine, 4/94. In the "Meta-Versing" column (by The Dark Tangent), there is a discussion of net.legends gleaned from the net.legends FAQ. "What do Kibo, Spaf, tail, The Warlord and B1ff all have in common?" he asks, leading us to wonder whether he means tail (the UNIX command) or Tale (Dave Lawrence). "This list contains certifiable crackpots and possible geniuses." Possible? Possible? I thought the FAQ said I was a genius. By the way, this was the first magazine to discuss me that I would have bought anyway (This was before I discovered that I could get them for free.)
MECHANICAL ENGINEERING magazine, 4/94. Explanation that Kibo is "central deity in the parody religion Kibology, created by Net prankster James Parry, who goes by the name Kibo." They based this article on J. D. Considine's Baltimore Sun one, although they credit it to "V. D. Considine". I've never bothered tracking down the dozens of other rebroadcasts of that one.
SAN JOSE (California) MERCURY NEWS, 4/19/94. A banner at the top of the front page screams, "ALL-SEEING KIBO OF THE INTERNET: Cult of personality" with a gigantic purple "Kibo" (in the grossest lettering you'll ever see: TrueType Chicago squished to half width, with some of the letters taller than others, and rectangular glossy highlights, and a lumpy shadow, and a big eyeball over the "i". And remember, purple.) Anyway, if you were to turn to the front page of the "Living" section, you'd see an eight-inch-wide purple "Kibo" again in the letters with the diseased diffusion dither drop shadow. (I couldn't think of a synonym for "shadow" that began with "d".) The wonderfully pro-Kibo article, "The Kibo philes" by David Plotnikoff, says "James Parry took one look at the on-line world and decided he wanted to be God." and "...the oddest of the odd invariably find their way into Kibology like lint to a bellybutton." He also uses the word "slacker-centric" at one point. BOY, AM I HIP OR WHAT? The editor's gloss for the headline was "Millions of Internet users are getting religion by way of Kibo, oddball deity for the digital age." The other half of this page is taken up by Kurt Cobain's suicide.
LA (California, duh) WEEKLY, sometime in 4/94: Kurt Cobain killed himself, and Weasel Boy told the new alt.music.nirvana that Kurt committed suicide because he was upset over not finding a rhyme for the word "beable". (A full explanation of the Kibological fun of "beable" is too huge to fit here, as it involves quantum mechanics.) An investigative reporter picked that up and ran with it, desperately hunting for the connection between Kibology and the late Kurt Cobain. "Monday, April 11: Rumors of 'beable' are nowhere to be found. And I've started to wonder if 'beable' really meant 'be able'. Was it a part of the note the electrician misread? Or something Weasel Boy just heard about?" Later, Weasel Boy and I explain to the confused reporter, and W.B. asks the reporter not to print his real name. "Kibo and Weasel Boy actually did me a favor: the Net makes more sense when you have a quest." This was the first celebrity whose death Kibo was rumored to have been involved with; later ones would include Carl Sagan and (soon) Bob Hope.
QUEENSLAND (Australia) SUNDAY MAIL, 5/22/94. Article on Kibo, based mainly on my ancient alt.religion.kibology FAQ (last updated in 1992). Headline of this "Special Report" by Peter Young: "Omnipresent deity with passion for networking." There's a great cartoon showing this Jehovah-type guy holding two computers over his head while four children point at him gleefully. I don't know if he's bringing them computers or keeping them away. Quote: "Kibology is one of the reasons that sociologists and psychologists are having a field day with the Internet."
PLAYBOY magazine, 6/94. Yep, it's the issue with Jenny McCarthy as Playmate of the Year. In "Confessions of an Internet Junkie", by J. C. Herz, there's a surprisingly informed paragraph about Kibo: "...alt.religion.kibology is a news group revolving around the slavish worship of James 'Kibo' Parry and the study of his personal quirks. For reasons unknown, Kibo has amassed a huge following of Net acolytes..." This is the second magazine that I would have bought even if it hadn't mentioned me. It's also my favorite citation, as the author actually knew what she was talking about, and hey, it's Playboy.
BOSTON HERALD, 11/30/94. Jeffrey Dahmer was killed in jail, and you can find out all about that on page 3. In the banner across the top of the front page, "Jenny Craig hit with sex harassment complaint -- by men" and guess what the big photo that covers most of the front page is? Kibo, sitting on the giant keyboard at Boston's Computer Museum. (The harsh lighting makes it look like I was pasted in with Photoshop, but I'm really there. They made me take off my boots, so take a good look at my clean new socks.) The article by M.A.J. McKenna, "Nation's computer hacks bow to Hub god", says I have "an unnervingly short haircut" (I had made the mistake of pointing out to the reporter that I had trimmed my hair that morning to look good for the photo, but had used the "taper" attachment for my trimmer by mistake, resulting in an asymmetrical cut, so I had to go over my whole head with the "buzz-cut" attachment.) It also says Kibology is "purely fictional" to reassure Herald readers. "'What makes this performance art,' says Parry, 'is that I do it straight.'" In a second photo (also by George Martell) I'm wearing someone else's hat to not look like I had a hair accident.
PHOENIX (Arizona) NEW TIMES "Best of Pheonix 1994" supplement: "Do you know what a flame war is? And idea as to the real identity of Kibo, god of the Internet? Know why the numbers 486-66 are sexier to your average computer geek wad than the figures 36-24-36? Good. Neither do we." This is the opening of a raving endorsement of, believe it or not, the CompUSA store in Mesa, Arizona. They liked that the salesman could explain why a double-speed CD-ROM player was so much better than single-speed. This article has to pack the most unintentional laughs per paragraph. Gotta love fifties humor. WOOOOO!!!! HE SAID 36-24-36!!!! LET'S GO DRINK MARTINIS AND WOLF-WHISTLE AT OUR SECRETARIES!!!!
LA STAMPA (Rome, Italy), late 1994. Was interviewed by a nice Italian gentleman who was working quite hard to write a good article on Kibology. Unfortunately, I don't have a copy of the article. It's a shame, as I wanted to see the nonsequiturs of Kibology rendered faithfully in Italian. (I remember that I had to explain that "bozo" was not "hobo".) Can anyone dig this up in an index for me?
CHRONICLE, WCVB-TV (Boston), 1/9/1995. An episode of the local TV news magazine devoted to the Internet. One of the segments was an interview with me. (As usual with TV shows about the Internet, it showed lots of pictures being displayed on a computer using Photoshop. It was the photo of me in the gas mask taken by E. Jay O'Connell.) They showed me posting a reply to an alt.religion.kibology post by Sean Smith, and then walking through Harvard Square in my cheap suit. Unfortunately, Mike Barnicle (Boston Globe columnist and crabby guy, who also contriubutes to Chronicle) hasn't yet written a column on the menace of Kibology.
CYBERMANIA, TV special for TBS, 1995. Was hired to produce and host a segment. I talked about Internet addiction (this probably would have been big laughs had it aired) while standing in front of a Connection Machine 5 (My black and red suit matched the $50,000,000 computer.) Unfortunately, they hadn't clearly communicated to me that the point of the special was to have Leslie Nielsen plug Nintendo cartridges, and I think they found my segment irrelevant. The only evidence of my involvement is a large closing credit thanking some guy named "JAMES 'KIBO' PAREY". It was a fun project. I interviewed lots of people, such as Richard M. Stallman, in places like phone closets with purple lighting to make them look eerie.
TRICKS OF THE INTERNET GURUS, book, 1995. While working on a book about using Usenet (which was cancelled when my schedule slipped and they had to clear things for an avalanche of Windows 95 books) I was also hired to write a foreword for "Tricks of the Internet Gurus". They also let me write a chapter on Usenet tips (which immediately went out-of-date, as PPP-based graphical newsreaders were about to blossom everywhere -- my chapter covered trn killfile syntax and stuff like that) AND they printed an interview with me. The two photographs of me were taken by E. Jay O'Connell. (The gas mask is from my personal collection.) Anyway, because each chapter was written by a different person with me writing the forward, they chose to put my name on the cover with a big starburst around it. (The forward was in the form of one of my Spot stories, by the way, in which Spot discovers the joys of the online service for dogs, Dogidy. I drew the deliberately geometric PostScript illustration of Spot drooling on the computer with the screen displaying "ARF ARF ARF ARF ARF".) Two links to the publisher: here and here. (The second one's now defunct.)
BOARDWATCH magazine, 2/95. Passing mention in discussion of the Geek Code. Link to online article.
THE NET magazine, 9/95. The first story listed in the table of contents: "How I Learned To Love The Internet: Our own Wayne Cunningham tells us a story of discovery, how he found a community online. Meandering his way through the net, he discovered Kibo, and from there... well, you'll find out." Also mentions a few other notable alt.religion.kibology people, such as Jesse Garon, Tjames Madison and Wednesday.
THE ECONOMIST magazine, 11/11/95. Ever wonder why they call it The Economist when it's all about British politics? In this case, this issue also had a large section reviewing books and multimedia. They discussed my story "Christmas 2000: Spot's Third First Christmas", which was one of my annual stories in which poor Spot has the worst Christmas ever. One of the funniest reviews I've ever read: they complain that the story is pointless because Spot might live or die depending on which branch you follow. They don't seem to realize that my point of writing a parody of those crappy "Choose Your Adventure" books for teens was that ALL branches of the story lead to the unhappy ending: I was expecting people to have fun trying to reverse the path from the happy ending that had no links pointing to it. They also illustrated the article with a drawing of a different Spot (the one from Eric Hill's children's books), which probably got them a nasty letter from the publisher. Fortunately, I was immune to lawsuits, as it seems The Economist forgot to credit me with the authorship of the story they were discussing.
THE TIMES (London, England) 3/10/97. "Computer chips and the social potatoes" by Tim Jones. Brief report on Oxford University Press announcing new technology-oriented words being added to the Oxford English Dictionary, such as "kibo, web slang for god." Apparently I'm being eponymously lowercased, like Bozo. "Helen McManners, an OUP spokeswoman, said: 'Mouse potatoes are a new breed joining yuppies, bimbos, toyboys and others who have earned a place in the English language.'" You can see this amazing, non-fabricated article (I trust the Times) at http://www.the-times.co.uk/ if you register and then search for "Kibo", assuming they ever get their search engine working again. (Can anyone send me a page ripped out of an old Times? Alas, I don't know the page number.)
THE NETLY NEWS, 2/29/96. On-line article by Chris Stamper. Calls Kibo "The biggest cult hero in Usenet history." The article is here.
HUNTSVILLE (Tennessee) TIMES, date unknown. Article printed in their electronic supplement. "Internet legend Kibo preaches ... well, nothing, really" was based on one from the Orange County Register. "Consider it the 'Seinfeld' of ideologies," says the author of Kibology. He or she quotes several unnamed people from alt.religion.kibology. "Kibo himself is little help." Does anyone have the Orange County Register article? The Huntsville Times one was here before it went away.
BALTIMORE CITY PAPER, 6/97. In perparation. Joab Jackson interviewed Kibo and, apparently, a large number of Kibo's acquaintances. I'm frightened.
NEWMEDIA magazine, 1/13/98. Ha! They hired me to write an article and they didn't even know they'd already mentioned me in 1994! I co-authored an article on CD-RW (erasable CD) technology with Matt McMakin, who did most of the work. They surprised us by making it the cover story.
Before he adopted the nickname, Kibo was in a few pathetic places. I'm not going to count the high school or college newspapers I wrote for or the yearbooks (I didn't buy yearbooks from any of the three colleges I attended. Yearbooks are evil.)
CRAZY magazine, 1981 or 1982. Marvel Publishing's clone of Mad and Cracked. (Much better than Cracked, but then again, so was a handful of dirt. Not as well-drawn as Mad, but sillier.) Their mascot was a drunken clown named Obnoxio. I wrote a letter to the editor, for their "Obnoxio's Abuse Column," which was an ancestor of the Internet flamewar. I made up a wacky middle name to give them something to insult because my awesome letter was 100% flameproof. I won a Marvel No-Prize(tm)!
WRGB-TV, Schenectady, about 1984. Appeared on "Answers Please", the local high school test of nerdness for two teams of four students, hosted by the local weatherman, Tim Welch. God, was this embarassing. (Particularly since we lost.) The turning point was that we had to unscramble place names; I couldn't make "CAPTION" into "PONTIAC" in the five seconds. The studio had the worst-looking wallpaper I've ever seen (it looked like 3-D bars of yellow soap.) The studio was also where they filmed (and, I think, still film) "Mr. Food", so I got to see the seedy side of Mr. Food's kitchen. Ooooh, it's so insipid.
WRGB-TV, Schenectady, about 1989. Brief shot of me walking past the camera at a community college graduation ceremony. We did the usual stunt of everyone handing the dean a gummi worm as we shook his hand, and I just happened to be in the front row (being one of the few people there to be getting a DEGREE instead of a typing certificate or something) so I gave him the first one. Curiously, nobody else followed up on this. Boy, is this embarassing. Did I mention that I was vice president of the math club, too?
During my 1992 Presidential campaign, an FTP archive (I think at the University of Michigan) was set up which contained speeches by the various candidates (Bush, Clinton, Kibo, and Perot.) When whitehouse.gov went online, they mirrored (copied) this site... resulting in the "kibo-for-prez" directory being available directly from the White House in late 1993. A bunch of Libertarians complained that they had a "joke" candidate there but not Andre Marrou, and so Kibology was banned in the name of Libertarianism.
I'm credited sometimes for my graphic design work, such as the typography for Philip K. Dick's novel "Gather Yourselves Together" and the glossy glass subway map on the latest (blue) edition of the cover of "Car-Free In Boston". (That was back when ray-tracing glass blocks took hours, not seconds.) But we don't care about that here. (Besides, I don't feel like scanning my portfolio.)
I've designed a number of typefaces, but usually you don't see credits on those when you buy them. (I've been written up in a few design magazines, although until recently I wasn't telling them the "Kibo" part of my name. Now it's on my business cards in big letters.) More about my typefaces when my own label is open for business on the Web later this year. Trust me, you haven't seen self-promotion until I start selling stuff.
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