Elizabeth has transformed Irishcentral.com from a hopeful web site to a growing brand and business that engages its audience, innovates for its advertisers and provides unique distribution to its partners. — Niall O’Dowd, Founder IrishCentral.com Many claim to be pioneers in online news but Elizabeth Osder is a true pathfinder. — Jeff Jarvis, Buzzmachine.com Elizabeth understands the content industry from all sides, both on the creative and business side, a perspective sorely needed in these times — Rafat Ali, PaidContent Elizabeth is genius at all things Internet — Paul Steiger, Editor, ProPublica Elizabeth is one of the most strategically gifted people I have met; there are very few people with whom every interaction is a valuable learning experience — Arnie Gullov Singh, EVP, Fox Audience Network She [Elizabeth] is practical, efficient and focused, with a reverence for our journalistic mission; her counsel has been crucial to the launch and development of ProPublica.org — Paul Steiger, Editor, ProPublica Elizabeth is a bright and astute observer of trends in the media market and possesses the rare blend of strategic vision and tactical insight — Allen Weiner, Research VP, Gartner, Inc. Working with Elizabeth has been both comforting and clarifying — Joni Evans, CEO, WowOwow Osder has worked on the future of news from every possible angle and can bring invaluable perspective to anyone trying to navigate the new world of media, news, and marketing online. — Jeff Jarvis, Buzzmachine.com Elizabeth’s diligence on seeing her projects through helped our resource-strapped small company a lot — Rafat Ali, PaidContent Elizabeth is superb strategist and adviser. She combines a deep understanding of content and business imperatives with what’s tactically practical — along with that critical ingredient, enthusiasm — David Goddy, Vice President, Education, Scholastic Elizabeth is an accomplished professional who knows how to draw on all her areas of editing and on- line expertise.. She is excellent at adjusting to the special requirements of each project and tailoring her advice to work creatively with the team in place — Tina Brown, Founder and Editor, The Daily Beast

Nov 25, 06:17 PM - (3) Comments

I know I am a day late and we’re all a dollar short these days, but I am finally going to start a blog. I’ll be sharing thoughts on our work, clients and the challenges and opportunities for interactive media.

I’m going to dedicate my first post to the clever folks whose talents came together to help launch this site.

First, Peter Wayner , my friend and colleague who first registered my domain back in 1995 and kept my little site on his servers until recently.

Peter is a brilliant journalist, editor and programmer who has been a wonderful teacher. Back in 1996, we launched one of the first truly interactive journalism projects for The New York Times on the Web. The AIDS simulator broke new ground and put the user in the driver seat by allowing them to test how different behavioral patterns affect the spread of the HIV virus.

Since then, servers have been littered with interactive simulations and experiments, and news organizations have deployed programmers to simulate the simulators. It’s all good work, but we had fun imagining what one day might be like when we convinced The New York Times to run this very different kind of journalism.

I should also say that Peter and I have been batting around ideas for years. I only wish we had time to hit one out of the park. The one that sits somewhat ideal in my portfolio of start-ups is his very brilliant visualization of sports scores found at Flyzone.com. If you play fantasy sports, give this a ride. Yeah the others are catching up, but Pete minted this thing a decade ago, and there’s a patent!

Some folks have been asking about the quirky artwork on the site. When faced with the possibility of looking like every other consultancy and forking over a few hundred bucks to stock photo houses for images of men in ties working at computers, ethnically diverse hacker kids at white boards, keyboards and motherboards, I was encouraged to try something different.

A dear old friend, Kayvan Sotoodeh, was visiting and had a look at an earlier version (with that stock art) and said “Yuck, put yourself into it.” Kayvan, a brilliant interactive designer who showed me you can do things different back in 1994 when we launched The Yuckiest Site on the Internet, created the gooey logo by writing with shampoo on his scanner. To this day it’s unique and stood the test of time as authentic and original. From Yucky, Kayvan went on to Conde Nast, Disney and is today Design Director at mySpace. Back in 1994 he was one of a handful of designers who knew what the web was or could be and had the swiss army knife skills to help us carve our way forward.

So with Kayvan’s inspiration, I looked around my world and found the images that have given me my aesthetic. How lucky I am to have a mom who studied advertising design at Parsons and dragged me to print shops when I was a kid. Excerpts from her paintings are the cornerstones of the clients, leadership and insights sections of the site. The about section has an image from a favorite set of books titled People, Places, Things and Ideas that I often referenced in grade school papers. The portfolio section is part of a medieval banner that hung in our house. The illustration on expertise is an antique Feng Shui compass I bought on a teaching trip to China.

The Contact imagery is a detail from a painting by Laura Niemi, the designer of osdergroup.com. Her work and her patience with the process are notable. Laura is a rare breed of designer who is no fuss, carries the ball down the field and never complains. Finally, my thanks go to Taylor Young my programmer, who is thoughtful, detailed, talented and professional. He and Laura made a great team and I am sure that anyone would enjoy working with them, check out their services at their shop Flora Fauna.

So thanks to you all for your help, and onward with the revolution!

Elizabeth Osder, November 24, 2008

Return to Blog | Comments (3) |

Responses to:
"Welcome to The Osder Group Blog"

  1. Hey Bitz the Blogger. Love, yes, love the site now. It’s really unique…I love getting quirky..Great work to all and lots of love, Maggie

    maggie · Dec 3, 05:26 PM · #

  2. It’s looking good, OG! If you have a minute, show the site to Oz and Barb, too.

    Char · Dec 5, 12:32 PM · #

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    flash chat · Jan 30, 07:44 AM · #

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