Gamers' Jesse James

The meta-game online over Colt Moore

1 min read

By now, you’ve may have heard the legend of Colton “Colt” Harris-Moore.  The 18-year-old bandit has become the so-called Jesse James of the gamer generation.  Across the islands of Western Washington, he has been allegedly robbing homes, busting into ATMs, stealing laptops, hijacking boats, and, most dramatically, joyriding and crashing stolen planes in the woods.  He got the nickname the “barefoot burglar” after getting caught leaving crime scenes with no shoes.

Moore is still at large – and his legend is spreading fast, and selling.  What’s interesting is how this elusive criminal has become sort of like a real-life digital star, with a meta-game of "players" tracking him down.  The Colton Harris-Moore fan club now boasts 7,000 members, with posts from Iowa to Italy.  There are Colton Harris-Moore t-shirts, messenger bags, and bumper stickers.  Hackers set up fake Colton Harris-Moore email addresses to lure and dupe hapless Hollywood producers (it’s working).  “Fly Colt Fly!” is the motto of Moore-heads.  Something about this kid’s brash style and escapist dreams is seducing admirers across the Web.  This dude rocks,” posted one fan, “Reminds me of myself when I was his age. STAY FREE, COLT!!!!!!!”

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Deep Learning Could Bring the Concert Experience Home

The century-old quest for truly realistic sound production is finally paying off

12 min read
Image containing multiple aspects such as instruments and left and right open hands.
Stuart Bradford

Now that recorded sound has become ubiquitous, we hardly think about it. From our smartphones, smart speakers, TVs, radios, disc players, and car sound systems, it’s an enduring and enjoyable presence in our lives. In 2017, a survey by the polling firm Nielsen suggested that some 90 percent of the U.S. population listens to music regularly and that, on average, they do so 32 hours per week.

Behind this free-flowing pleasure are enormous industries applying technology to the long-standing goal of reproducing sound with the greatest possible realism. From Edison’s phonograph and the horn speakers of the 1880s, successive generations of engineers in pursuit of this ideal invented and exploited countless technologies: triode vacuum tubes, dynamic loudspeakers, magnetic phonograph cartridges, solid-state amplifier circuits in scores of different topologies, electrostatic speakers, optical discs, stereo, and surround sound. And over the past five decades, digital technologies, like audio compression and streaming, have transformed the music industry.

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