Melody Kramer

People Not in News Commenting on the News: Meet Nick Quaranto

18 Jan 2015 by melodyjoykramer

Meet Nick Quaranto. He lives in Buffalo, NY and describes himself using the default description for every dwarf in Dwarf Fortress: A short, sturdy creature fond of drink and industry. I love making things happen.

During the day, Nick is a programmer at Basecamp, where he works on iOS apps. He also founded a coworking space in Buffalo called CoworkBuffalo. Outside of work, he says “I tend to trade sleep for my various side projects, which seems to rotate recently between helping to maintain, tracking setlists and stats for my favorite local band Aqueous, or running a weekend-only vanilla Minecraft server.”

I asked Nick some questions about how he gets his news. (He was the first to send back his answers as a gist.) If you’d like to read the others in the series, please click here, and if you want to take part, just let me know.

1. How do you get your news?

Twitter: Instant, breaking news for local to national stuff. I follow way too many people (and robots).

Hacker News: Tech industry garbage. I’ve set my “topcolor” (the background color of the site’s header) to be magic pink as a reminder to not take anything seriously on the site.

NYT: I feed the most popular articles from the Times into Pocket via IFTTT. There’s just too many to read and I usually delete most of them.

NPR: Every so often I’ll catch Morning Edition or some other shows on WBFO as we’re out driving. It’s not my best source, but better than anything else on the radio. (Fun fact I’m sure you’ll love: Terry Gross started her radio career here at WBFO!) Ed note: Here’s why Terry misses WBFO

PNAS: My brother’s a 2nd year med student, and he recently tuned me into the fantastic papers the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences publishes nearly every day. Most of it is way over my head, but every so often there’s nuggets to learn like chimpanzees plan their brunch based on the fruits available. I also use IFTTT and Pocket to follow these articles.

The Public: A weekly that just started up here in Buffalo. Fantastic design and interesting stories every week so far.

2. Please send a gif or video or poem that captures your attention span.

Especially when trying to read news:

bored dog


3. How do you take your coffee?

Black and preferably roasted by Public Espresso.

4. Who’s doing it right in news?

I stayed up many a late night watching live streams from the Ferguson protests. Since then my favorite recent Twitter followers have been @ShaunKing, @deray, and @Nettaaaaaaaa. You owe it to yourself to listen to them.

5. What’s the first news event that you can remember? 

The earliest vivid memory I can remember is 9/11. I was in high school, and I remember running to the computer labs at school to try and figure out what was going on, and watching the news all that night. Anything before that was a wash. I think that’s when I really started paying attention to “the news”.

6. What was the best thing that happened to you this week?

CoworkBuffalo had around 15 people working on Tuesday. 2 years running so far and having that many people in our space on a cold, rainy December day is fantastic.

7. What do you absolutely hate about the news? 

I despise The Buffalo News and their online presence. Two good reasons that still exist after years:

It’s pretty awful. Despite these reasons and growing up reading this paper, it’s still one of the best ways to reach people locally, so we just have to deal with it.

8. What’s the best podcast to listen to while doing chores?

Every so often I’ll pop on some This American Life, but my jam when cleaning up the house, walking the dog, or really just doing anything is listening to Phish.

I’ve heard Serial is pretty good, but like every other TV show that gets popular recently, I’m going to wait until it’s over and listen to it all in one marathon. (My friends who are addicted to the show can’t stand this.)

9. How do you get your news when you travel?

One of these days I need to travel without my iPhone or laptop. Other than that, it’s hard to break the habits of checking everything daily when traveling.


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