Photographer Rob Howard often shoots in exotic locations like beaches in Mozambique and vineyards in South Africa for Condé Nast Traveler and Travel + Leisure. For "Mine Field" in this issue, he headed instead to tiny Iliamna, Alaska. "Every day was soupy gray and spitting rain," says writer Melanie Warner, who traveled to southwest Alaska with Howard in March. "But Rob was right at home. He came with all the right gear, while I showed up in jeans and sneakers."
Looking into companies' misguided Web 2.0 choices, Caroline Waxler discovered a new hobby: watching corporate Twitter feeds talk to one another. "For an adventure in dystopia, you can't do much better than that," she says. One of the original writers and an occasional on-air commentator for VH1's comedy show Best Week Ever, Waxler is now managing editor of the Business Sheet, a fledgling business news and gossip Web site.
This month, New York — based writer Robert Levine charts MTV's many digital-media projects. "My favorite instrument on Rock Band, one of its better-known acquisitions, is the drums," Levine says. "I'm waiting to download Rush's Moving Pictures album so I can try to play along with Neil Peart on 'Tom Sawyer.' " He covers the music business for The New York Times when he's not rocking out in his living room.
Lynne d Johnson
"I'm a total social-media junkie," says Lynne d Johnson, who prefers Twitter and Facebook to email. That quirk serves her well as community director for the Fast Company Web site, where she is launching the Blog Club. A poet, essayist, and winner of the 2006 Black Blogger Achievement Award, Johnson tracks Web, media, and consumer trends on her blog, Digital Media Diva, at fastcompany.com/blog/1234.
Showing us how things work is illustrator Jason Lee's specialty. His latest assignment for Fast Company: "Attack of the Green Tech Geeks." He says, "Anything that makes things more efficient and easier and is at the same time better for the environment, I'm all for it." Lee's work has appeared in The New York Times, Wired, and Entertainment Weekly. He lives in Manhattan with his wife, Jeannie, and their newborn son, Max.
A version of this article appeared in the November 2008 issue of Fast Company magazine.