Friday, March 31, 2000

Do I hear more ECHOs?

Peals of laughter from children rang out amidst the giggles of elders at
ECHO's 10-year anniversary on Friday, March 31. Stacy Horn, the founder of
ECHO, was playing the role of dutiful hostess, making sure everyone got a
nametag. My experience at this remarkable, historic event was similar to
others--faces faintly familiar and mutual recognition of past Caucus
buddies. ECHO was the de facto original community in New York's Silicon
Alley, before the term was even coined. And many of its original members
still flock to its text-based bulletin board system to discuss everything
from Chaucer to chance encounters (of all kinds).

ECHO is also typified by a class of true programmers, hackers, writers,
artists, as well as other artists from the technical, digital and creative
realms. Stacy is the doyenne of this literary and techie den, and she's got
a lot to be proud of. Ten years is a long time -- and to be successful and
show no signs of slowing down in this industry is a coup many can only
dream about.

While Stacy mingled with guests, who ranged from ages two weeks to 32
years, I caught up with James Sanders of his own firm, Molly Ker of (she’s going to live in London for six months) and Jackie
Donovan. Lianne Smith and Rob Tannenbaum were among the musicians present
-- both were performing at Fez and the Knitting Factory, respectively.
Stacy was also telling me about her new all-women samba band.

It definitely was a family affair too: Angus and Hadley brought their
newborn Gillan, who bounced quietly in Daddy's arms as they navigated the
room full of toddlers and preschoolers. Neandergal was another member who
had children in tow. Other GEO's (Geriatric Echoids) came out of curiousity
and reverence to see long lost friends.