Past guests appear below in alphabetical order.
…and click to learn more about the hosts (Adam, Wil, and Paul and Storm)
2.8 – Boston
Marc Abrahams is editor and co-founder of the science humor magazine Annals of Improbable Research (AIR) and its web site, www.improbable.com and Internet TV series. He writes about research that makes people LAUGH, and then THINK. Marc is the father and master of ceremonies of the Ig Nobel Prize Ceremony, honoring achievements that make people LAUGH, and then THINK. The Prizes are handed out by genuine Nobel Laureates at a gala ceremony held each October at Harvard University and broadcast on National Public Radio and on the Internet.
(Photo by David Kessler.)
2.2 – Chicago, IL; 2.9 – Austin, TX; 2.10 – Dallas, TX
Bill is the cartoonist behind the much-beloved strip FoxTrot, and was the National Caroonists Society’s Reuben Award-winner for Outstanding Cartoonist of the Year in 2007. He’s also widely known as an avid World of Warcraft player, although his gamertag remains shrouded in mystery.
2.3 – Minneapolis, MN
Over the past 20 years Tim Bedore has spent thousands of hours entertaining audiences, first on the radio and then as a comedian, headlining comedy clubs across the country. One of the few young comics to have combined the disciplines of stand-up comedy and broadcasting, Tim knows the rigors of working within demanding parameters.
3.0 – San Diego
2.1 – Portland, OR
B. Frayn Masters is co-producer of Back Fence PDX productions and co-host of the Back Fence storytelling show. Samplers of her writing can be found in MonkeyBicycle 6, Hobart, and Mountain Man Dance Moves: The McSweeney’s Book of Lists. She also writes under a sexy moniker for GGW magazine — yes, GGW has a magazine (google it). Masters is also one half of the ridiculous and brainy sketch comedy duo Eastland Academy, and is a member of rapid-fire performance group Haiku Inferno.
2.2 – Chicago, IL; 2.3 – Minneapolis, MN
Trace Beaulieu was a founding writer/performer on “Mystery Science Theater 3000″ (MST3K), playing Dr. Forrester and Crow” for the show’s first seven seasons as well as the feature film version of MST. Trace continues to work as both a performer and writer. As an actor, he has appeared on “Freaks and Geeks” (6 eps), “The West Wing” and several independent features. He was also the host of “People Traps” on Animal Planet. Trace’s writing credits include ABC’s “America’s Funniest Home Videos”, “Fast Food Films” on FX, and authoring the popular comic book “Here Come the Big People!”. Trace is also a dedicated visual artist with pieces in many collections.
2.5 – San Francisco, CA
h#mce_temp_url# founder and author of the books: “Star Wars Craft Book,” “Draw Star Wars: The Clone Wars,” “Girls Against Girls: Why We Are Mean to Each Other,” “You Can Draw: Star Wars” and “Never Threaten To Eat Your Co-Workers: Best of Blogs.” As Senior Editor of Starwars.com for Lucasfilm, Bonnie head up the kids section and crafts everything from duct tape AT-ATs, Bossk Bean Art, Chewbacca Tissue Box Cozies, Mouse Droid Cat Nip Toys, and a Jabba the Hutt Body Pillows.
2.5.1 – San Francisco
1.1 – Los Angeles, CA
Josh A. Cagan (@joshacagan) enjoys his wife, his couch, and any movie with “Switchblade” in the title. His 2009 movie BANDSLAM didn’t have the word “Switchblade” but he, and 90% of the top critics on Rotten Tomatoes enjoyed it anyway. Perhaps you will as well: http://amzn.to/bvmxHr. He was the head writer and the voice of various nerds on MTV’s animated series “Undergrads,” and if you’re one of the 16 people that means anything to, that’s a pretty big deal, right? He lives in Los Angeles with his wife and their stuffed animals, all of whom have different voices and catchphrases. Nothing weird about that.
2.5 – San Diego, CA; 2.7 – New York, NY; 2.8 – Boston, MA
Marian Call is a trained composer and a spunky self-taught singer based out of Anchorage, Alaska. Her songs are eclectic and diverse, funny and light on their feet, powerfully honest, and grounded in the human experience. Call’s compositions are half study and calculation, half improvisational instinct, and always full of unexpected musical twists and turns. She has written pieces by commission for film projects and events, and she has been known to write songs on dares or to surprise devoted fans.
Her live shows have been loudly applauded nationwide in homes, quiet coffee shops, noisy bars, churches, radio stations, bookstores, and concert halls, in and out of Alaska. In only eight months she went from a relative unknown to playing the main stage at several of Alaska’s summer festivals. Marian released her first two albums plus fourteen singles in only fourteen months during 2007 and 2008. She is nearing completion on a new two-volume project titled Something Fierce.
Marian was born into a family of musicians and artists, and she was raised on a steady diet of Bach, Beethoven, Joni Mitchell, Tower of Power, and Ogden Nash in her hometown, Gig Harbor, Washington. Over twenty-odd years she has performed with chamber choirs, jazz combos, early music groups, rock bands, a gospel choir, and experimental music ensembles, and all of these influences (and more) meet and mingle in her own writing. She completed her bachelor’s degree in composition and vocal performance at Stanford University in 2004. After graduation, she spent two years pouring coffee, waiting tables, and listening to good music in Anchorage coffee shops, slowly learning about the craft of songwriting through osmosis and eventually through practice. Marian plans to travel and tour as much as possible, including the upcoming 49>50 fan-coordinated tour of the entire United States, but she remains committed to the development of a great arts scene in Anchorage. Marian looks forward to collaborating with friendly musicians, writers, visual artists, and filmmakers from all backgrounds.
2.5 – San Francisco, CA
Selected by Foreign Policy magazine as one of their Top 100 Global Thinkers, Jamais Cascio explores the intersection of emerging technologies, environmental challenges, and cultural transformation. Cascio currently serves as Research Fellow at the Institute for the Future, and writes regularly for numerous print and web outlets. He speaks around the world about the importance of long-term thinking in a changing world, and has been featured in multiple television documentaries about futures thinking and the environment. In 2009, Cascio published HACKING THE EARTH, looking at the ethics of radical environmental intervention. Cascio co-founded the award-winning eco-website WorldChanging.com, and now blogs at OpenTheFuture.com.
2.2 – Chicago, IL
An accomplished comedian, Tim’s funny songs have always got him a lot of attention. His song, “I Wanna Kiss Her (But She Won’t Let Me),” was the first of Tim’s pieces to receive national radio exposure, on the legendary “Dr. Demento” show. Other songs followed, including “99 Dead Baboons,” “Get Drunk with Dignity,” and “Really Safe Sex.” His funny music has been heard on radio stations everywhere, as well as on XM Satellite and even the BBC.
By 1997 he was well-established and a regular guest on the Bob & Tom Radio Show, syndicated in 150 U.S. markets. He’s also appeared on Comedy Central, ABC-TV, Showtime, WGN, and Comcast, and his book “Chicken Soup for the Vegetarian Soul” just went through its sixth printing.
3.0 – San Diego
Bill Corbett and Kevin Murphy (from Rifftrax)
2.2 – Chicago, IL; 2.3 – Minneapolis, MN; 2.4 – San Diego, CA (with Mike Nelson); 2.8 – Boston, MA
They don’t make movies–they make movies funny.
2.7 – New York, NY; Founder’s Night SFSF – San Francisco
Drew Curtis started comedy-slanted news aggregator Fark.com way back in 1999, which is something like one billion years old in Internet years. Through the course of reading nearly ever news article in Legacy Media over the past 11 years, Drew has noticed several patterns of crap news which he likes to talk endlessly about. He has appeared on every major news network at one time or another and damn near every major radio station, and occasionally manages not to embarass himself (or others). He has gone almost 6 months without dropping an f-bomb during a live broadcast. He lives in Kentucky, which is pretty much the last place you’d expect.
1.1 – Los Angeles (with The Guild), CA, 3.0 – San Diego, CA (with Amy Berg)
Felicia Day is the creator, writer and star of the hit web series “The Guild“, and is well-known from her role as Penny in “Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog“, and from her numerous appearances on shows such as Joss Whedon’s “Buffy the Vampire Slayer” and “Dollhouse”.
The Guild 1.1 Los Angeles
Sandeep Parikh (Zaboo) and Jeff Lewis (Vork) joined Felicia to perform a live version of “Do You Want To Date My Avatar?” Many know Sandeep’s directorial efforts, which includes the popular web series “The Legend of Neil“, and he is the founder of Effinfunny.com. Jeff is a seasoned writer and comic actor whose credits include “The Drew Carey Show” and “Glee”. He is also an alumnus of ACME Comedy Theatre and a graduate of The Groundlings and The Second City.
Legendary game designers and professional jugglers joined forces in 2003 to create Lone Shark Games, and have now created a special puzzle for w00tstock.
2.0 – Seattle, WA; 2.1 – Portland, OR; 2.2 – Chicago, IL; 2.3 – Minneapolis, MN; 2.4 – San Diego, CA; 2.5 – San Francisco, CA; 2.7 – New York, NY; 2.9 – Austin, TX; 2.10 – Dallas, TX
Drummer and singer for The Presidents of the United States of America and man-about-town. He was previously the drummer of Love Battery until 1995, and also played drums for the Seattle-based band Skin Yard as well as The Fastbacks, when he joined Chris Ballew and Dave Dederer to form The Presidents of the United States of America.
2.3 – Minneapolis, MN; 2.9 – Austin, TX
You don’t know who Neil Gaiman is? Really??
2.0 – Seattle, WA; 2.1 – Portland, OR
“Hi, I’m Hank. Turns out, I’ve thrown enough stuff at the big sticky wall that is the internet that some of it has gotten lodged in some of its more glorious crevices. These bits of internet stuff are what I do for a living and I’m working hard to help others join me. I do a lot of weird things that I think make the world and my life better. You can click on the logos above to see some of those projects, what they do and how they work. Of course, there’s more to what I do than that. If you want to keep up with me or get in touch, I have all of the usual social media things going on. YouTube is where most of it happens for me.”
1.1 – Los Angeles, CA; 2.6 – Los Angeles, CA
Chris HARDwick aNd Mike PHIRMan’s work has been downloaded millions of times over from the vast expanse of Earth’s Internet. They also regularly perform in front of people, sometimes at such highly-touted venues as the Improv, the Punch Line, the Aspen Comedy Festival, Seattle’s celebrated Bumbershoot Festival, SxSW and Coachella. They’ve also appeared inside your home via ABC’s Jimmy Kimmel Live, MTV, and VH1′s I Love the [insert Generation X Demographic Era].
2.7 – New York, 2.8 – Boston, ; Founder’s Night SFSF – San Francisco
In 2007, when the creators behind the “Watchmen” movie asked the National Academy of Sciences for a consultant to help them translate the acclaimed graphic novel to film, they looked no further than Kakalios and his superhero expertise. He also appears on the DVD version of the film in a featurette which discusses some of the science behind one of Watchmen’s central characters — Dr. Manhattan.
He received his Ph.D. in 1985 from the University of Chicago, and has been reading comic books for much longer. He lives in Minneapolis with his wife Therese and his three children.
1.0 – San Francisco, CA
Kasper Hauser, a San Francisco-based comedy group, is (L to R) Dan Klein, James Reichmuth, John Reichmuth, and Rob Baedeker. They perform and produce live shows, digital content, and books. The group’s members have written for HBO digital and appeared on “Comedy Central” and “This American Life.”
An avid game and puzzle inventor since childhood, Kid B is a proud member of the National Puzzlers’ League, and has taught at Harvard and MIT on game design, and he recently published his first puzzle book, Crossdoku.
1.0 / 1.0.1 – San Francisco, CA; 1.1 – Los Angeles, CA; 2.0 – Seattle, WA; 2.1 – Portland, OR; 2.2 – Chicago, IL; 2.3 – Minneapolis, MN; 2.5/2.5.1 – San Francisco, CA; 2.6 – Los Angeles, CA; 2.9 – Austin, TX; 2.10 – Dallas, TX
As a direct result of her being funny, clever, and generally awesome, Molly has gathered a large following primarily through her videos, which she posts on her website and on YouTube under the name sweetafton23. Pairing her wit with a ukulele has yielded a number of original songs, available from her website and in one complete physical package titled “I Made You a CD, But I Eated It“.
2.0 – Seattle, WA; 2.1 – Portland, OR
Started as a creative outlet so co-creators Graham Stark and Paul Saunders could fulfill their desire to make funny videos, LRR has grown into an internet comedy destination.
Inspired in name and appearance by the Commodore 64 Home Computer System, LRR is a site run by-and for-geeks. You have to be at least a bit of a geek to think writing, shooting and producing a new, original short sketch every week is feasible. But you have to be a giant geek to actually do it. Since LoadingReadyRun’s start in 2003, it has consistently updated with a new video, every week. Often more!
LRR videos have been featured in film festivals such as the Comic Con International Film Festival in San Diego, and shown on major TV networks, including G4 TechTV, The CW, TruTV, NBC, and CNN.
A longtime idolizer of rappers, MC Frontalot (nee Damian Hess) he has been committing his own esoteric hip-hop compositions to four-track tape since high school, revealing them to nobody. Suddenly! Multi-track desktop studios, cheap pro-grade recording hardware, skyrocketing bandwidth, semi-anonymous web publishing – these factors converge on Damian’s rap hobby like a flock of winged monkeys. He posts an MC Frontalot web page, dubbing his output “Nerdcore Hip-Hop” since his audience is composed of several Star Wars figurines who live on his desk (and also random internet people who click on his MP3s by mistake).
Now it is 2010. Nerdcore has metastasized into an internet phenomenon and underground touring powerhouse, with dozens of live acts and more than a hundred home-studio rhymers self-identifying within the subgenre. MC Frontalot, called alternately the movement’s godfather or grandfather (thanks, kids), leads the charge, performing for thousands around the country and at prominent geek gatherings such as the Penny Arcade Expo and BlizzCon. He has released four studio albums, Nerdcore Rising (Sept 2005), Secrets From The Future (Apr 2007), Final Boss (Nov 2008), and Zero Day (Apr 2010). The documentary feature, Nerdcore Rising: The Movie, which focuses on Front’s live band and the Nerdcore phenomenon general, debuted at the South By Southwest Film Festival, March 2008, and is currently distributed by Virgil films / B-Side.
2.2 – Chicago, IL; 2.3 – Minneapolis, MN; 2.4 – San Diego, CA
Len is an cartoonist/illustrator/podcaster who is behind other online viral art projects like Monster By Mail and FlipFace. He has illustrated several books including “There’s A Zombie In My Treehouse” by John “Widgett” Robinson and Ken Plume and “Very Grimm Fairy Tales” by Trevor Strong. He is currently working on a new book with Cinematic Titanic’s Trace Beaulieu, due out this summer.
2.5/2.5.1 – San Francisco, CA; 2.6 – Los Angeles, CA
Mike Phirman is incredibly uncomfortable writing about himself in the third person, so he is going to write his bio in the second person.
You attended UCLA where you received a degree in Philosophy. While at college, you met Chris Hardwick, a fellow stand-up comedy enthusiast with whom you began performing silly musical acts under the name “Hard ‘n Phirm” Together, you’ve made a record, performed at comedy clubs and colleges all over the country (you’ve driven past a lot of corn), and taped a “Comedy Central Presents” special that you feel went not-too-badly. In a few days, the two of you will be taping a show for HBO Canada as part of the 2010 Montreal Comedy Festival.
Aside from music, you’ve also worked as a visual effects artist for movies, music videos, and TV shows like “C.S.I.” and “C.S.I.: Miami.” (Don’t tell anyone, but on one episode of C.S.I. wherein the camera follows a spark that sets off a car bomb, if you play it frame-by-frame, the spark briefly spells out “Hi Mom”)
In May you released a solo album called “The Very Last Songs I Will Ever Record (Part 1)”. You lost your mind when “Weird Al” Yankovic showed up to perform on one of the tracks.
On a personal note, you love folding laundry. Also, you have a little third nipple, but were born without a sense of smell. And one time, following a root canal, you were regrettably informed that the dentist operated on the wrong tooth. Most recently, you googled the words “comedian bio what to write”—you found nothing helpful.
2.4 – San Diego; 2.5.1 – San Francisco, CA
Once upon a time Phil Plait was a respected scientist, working on Hubble Space Telescope data and exploring the Universe. Swayed by the dark side, he decided getting people excited about science was more fun than actually doing it. Pays better, too. So now he writes the Bad Astronomy Blog, pens a monthly article for Blastr (the SyFy channel’s web portal), has authored two books on astronomy, and is the host of the Discovery Channel’s “Phil Plait’s Bad Universe”. He hopes that one day a nearby supernova will irradiate him and make him taller.
4.0 – San Diego
Rob Reid founded the company that created Rhapsody, the world’s largest seller of online music until it was eclipsed (rather badly, he’ll admit) by Apple’s iTunes service. He’s the author of Year Zero, a novel about aliens who really, really, really like American pop music. He lives in Los Angeles with his wife, Morgan, and Ashby the Dog. His party trick is speaking Arabic with an incredibly thick Egyptian accept. Born a Libra but Sagittarius at heart, he thinks horoscopes are complete bullshit.
2.2 – Chicago, IL
Peter is best known as the host of NPR’s Peabody Award-winning “Wait, Wait…Don’t Tell Me!”, which since its debut in 1998 has become one of the most popular shows on public radio, heard by nearly three million listeners on 520 public radio stations nationwide, and heard by a million people every month via podcast.
In October 2007, Harper Collins published Peter’s first book, The Book of Vice: Naughty Things and How to Do Them, a series of essays about bad behavior, which was released in paperback in 2008. He is also a regular columnist for Runner’s World, and has completed the Chicago, New York and Boston Marathons. He was named by New Jersey Jewish News as one of the top ten Jewish entertainers from New Jersey.
Peter’s creative resume also includes playwright, literary manager for a regional theater, movie publicist, stage director, actor, extra in a Michael Jackson video, travel writer, essayist, ghost writer for a former adult film impresario and staff writer for a motorcycle magazine.
2.3 – Minneapolis, MN
John Scalzi is a Hugo Award-winning writer whose novels include Old Man’s War and The Android’s Dream. He also works on the Stargate Universe TV show as a Creative Consultant, is the incoming president of the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America, has a widely-read blog called Whatever, AND IS STANDING RIGHT BEHIND YOU WITH A KNIFE OH MY GOD THE BLOOD.
2.6 – Los Angeles, CA
Eric Schwartz might be the only artist in history reviewed by both “Sing out!” and “Hustler”. He has toured as a folk singer, composed a Musical, had a couple of million-hit videos online, won the International Songwriting Competition’s Comedy/Novelty Song of the Year in 2009 as well as the Just Plain Folks Novelty CD of the year in 2009, composed and recorded a CD of Jazz/Swing Christmas songs, and had his music played on Howard Stern 100, NPR’s ‘All Things Considered’, and Air America. He currently resides in Los Angeles, CA.
(Pretty much all of them)
“Dammit Liz” isn’t really a guest, per se; but she’s become a celebrity of sorts in her own right. Liz has been the official w00tstock Production Coordinator (a.k.a. Dungeon Master) since w00tstock 2.0 back in May 2010. With her tool belt, personalized shirt, fearsome gaze and iron fist, she keeps the w00tstock train running on time, and is the invisible hand that keeps everything from falling apart. All hail “Dammit Liz!”
2.4 – San Diego, CA; 2.5.1 – San Francisco, CA
According to the kings of irreverent magic, Penn & Teller, “Jamy Ian Swiss makes one understand what a terrifying art form pure sleight of hand can be. He is James Bond with a deck of cards for a pistol.”
An acclaimed master of the challenging art of intimate sleight of hand magic as well as a professional stage mind-reader for large audiences, Jamy Ian Swiss has performed magic and mentalism throughout the United States and the world. Swiss has made television appearances in the United States, Europe and Japan, including U.S. appearances on The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson; CBS 48 Hours; PBS Nova, and repeat appearances on The Today Show. Behind the cameras, Swiss has produced and written for television including Penn & Teller’s Sin City Spectacular (writer/producer); The Virtual Magician, which aired in 47 countries (head writer/co-director); and the Discovery Channel special, Cracking the Con Games (creator/producer).
As a professional speaker, Swiss uses “magical metaphors” to address subjects including customer and user experience, information design, creativity, and risk management before elite conferences and Fortune 500 clientele. He is a performer in as well as a producer of New York City’s longest-running Off-Broadway magic show, Monday Night Magic, now in its 14th season. And he is the author of Shattering Illusions, a collection of essays;The Art of Magic (the companion to the PBS documentary); and co-wrote the chapter “Explaining Magic” in Visual Explanations by information design guru Edward Tufte.
In a lengthy profile in The New Yorker, Adam Gopnik writes, “Swiss is thought to have one of the most masterly sleight-of-hand techniques in the world today.”
2.0 – Seattle, WA; 2.1 – Portland, OR; 2.9 – Austin, TX; 2.10 – Dallas, TX
Stephen “Stepto” Toulouse is currently the Director of Policy and Enforcement (read: Banhammer) for Microsoft’s Xbox LIVE gaming service. Referred to by the LA Times as an “Online Gaming Legend”, Toulouse gets no end of grief from his team mates about it, and at w00tstock you can expect him to tell funny stories and anecdotes from his 16 years with Microsoft. There might also be monk chants. You just never know.
- Kari Byron (Mythbusters)
- Aaron Douglas (BSG)
- MC Frontalot
- Neil Gaiman
- Grant Imahara
- Patrick Rothfuss
- “Weird Al” Yankovic