WELCOME to the website of the Sound Bite Institute, the latest milestone of a remarkable journey.

The Institute that opened its doors in 1993 was a decidedly low-tech operation. Those first few speeches and creative projects were etched in clay tablets and delivered by camel. This labor-intensive process was a strong disincentive for second and third drafts.

By early 1994, I developed a technique of smelting ores from soft rocks into oblong writing utensils, using dyed tree sap for ink and papyrus leaves for paper. Trained pigeons would clutch them in their claws and deliver them to clients, often times that same week.

1995 saw the introduction of the printing press to the Institute, and soon humorous material was rolling off the press with all the modern efficiency of my butter churner. It was such a dramatic improvement, I hardly minded leaving the feudal manor, moving to a city and joining a Guild.

When I think back on1996, my mind’s nose fills with the dankness of carbon paper seeping from my trusty Royale typewriter as it clacked away in the pursuit of mirth. And as 1997 rolled in, I’ll never forget the message "..-..---. …-- … -.-… --. …--..-…– - .-…--. …-. .-…– -.-…--. .-…– -.-… --. …- ..-…–" that informed me that my neighborhood was now telephone-ready.

1998 will always be remembered as the Year of the Facsimile Machine and with 1999 came the Miracle of e-mail. Neither made my work product funnier but both convinced me that electricity was more than just a fad.

Today, the Sound Bite Institute bravely enters the new epoch by tiptoeing out upon the world wide web. Cyberspace may prove to be the perfect medium for a "creative think tank": what better home could a working metaphor find than the amorphous habitat of a virtual world?

Please come back often for updated humor and/or sign up for e-mail alerts for published works and added features. In cyberspace, no one can hear you smile.

Mark Katz
Resident Scholar