shared memory: humdog

News came today that a long-time friend had died over the weekend: Carmen Hermosillo, aka "Humdog". I am very sad to hear. She is dearly missed.

Humdog generally kept Skype running on her computer all the time, which now shows "last seen on 2008-08-12 11:18 GMT-7". Someone must have turned off her computer just then.

Thinking back, it must have been about 1991 when I first "met" Carmen online, on The Well when I first joined as part of the editorial staff at bOING-bOING. Writers enjoy heady discussions, and Carmen had a knack for turning discussions on their head. She also had the most incredible ways of steering a group online.

More recently, I hired Carmen as a researcher for my team at HeadCase. Perfect for the job, she thrived in that role. There was one point, when the company was first getting started in 2006... Humdog tried to get each of the managers to read a particular article. Everyone replied, "Wow, great, but I'm really too busy now on a certain business planning document, blah blah, will catch up later, etc." As it turned out, that article broke news about virtual worlds which turned our first draft business plan inside out, but in a good way. Some of us finally listened to Carmen, in time to make necessary changes.

Oddly enough, Carmen and I never met in person until the final HeadCase team meetings in July 2008, held in San Luis Obispo. My hometown provided a beautiful, relaxed setting -- our first and last meeting in the physical world.

During most of the 1990s, I was privileged to lead a rather scruffy gang of media explorers called FringeWare. Humdog had a definitive role on our magazine's masthead and an exuberant voice in our online forums.

Among those who formed the core of FringeWare, Humdog becomes the first of us to go to our ancestors.

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