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Deviant Behavior

News Flash: now selling powerful Linspire computers starting at $499!

In 1999, I hosted the 2nd Annual MP3 Summit, which brought together the eclectic software, hardware and music companies all working to build the future of digital music around MP3. At that year's show, a 15-year-old stood out. He stood out not because he was 15, but because he was chaperoned by his Mom. It was the only way she'd permit him to make the trek from his home in New York to the summit held in San Diego. At the time he ran a small music site called dmusic, he knew MP3 would have an impact and was committed to being part of the digital music wave. At 18 he moved to LA and continued to work on dmusic until eventually selling the company. He never created the big company his mind dreamed of, but he learned a lot by watching MP3 and recognizing the power of the community that propelled it.

Now just old enough to drink and armed with the experience of MP3, Angelo Sotira has created a company in another area - digital art. You may never have heard of deviantART, but it's in the top 2,000 websites in the world in traffic with more than 300 million page views per month. This week the 1 millionth artist will sign up to put their handiwork on There are more than 8 million digital artworks with 30,000 being added every day.

Take a peek at the contest entries

A contest is now running on deviantART to create the best Linspire wallpaper. Thousands of submissions have poured in. Some are stunning. Some are awful. All will be voted on by our Insiders to select the best one, which will be included in upcoming Linspire 5.0. Winners will get some prizes, with the top-rated artists receiving a Koobox - a popular, low-cost Linspire-based computer. Let us know which wallpapers you like by posting on the forum.

It's fascinating watching how digital artists armed with just Photoshop or GIMP, some processor power and their imaginations can shape the future of art. Today, these artists are largely overlooked by the traditionalists because they are using computer bits rather than physical atoms (paint, wood, stone, etc). The art world has a long history of ignoring the newest medium and taking a while to recognize a new movement. Point your browser to and I think you'll agree with me that some deviant behavior can be good.

-- Michael
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