About

My name is Robert Kalm. Friends call me Bob. I write, produce, and teach interactive media. I like projects that are small enough to think big.

That’s me back in the nineties directing a makeshift company of actors in the shallow end of the then abandoned McCarren Park Pool in Greenpoint, Brooklyn.

When the City of New York couldn’t afford a television studio with a blue screen, I suggested we improvise with one of their cherry pickers and an empty, monochrome tub floor. We got an Emmy nomination.

NYU taught me filmmaking is editing. Just as I choose the limits of the camera frame and the boundaries of each scene, I can use the limitations of my resources or budget.

After two decades of producing, I still seek out experiments. If you have a creative problem to solve, and want to see your limits as possibilities, contact me below.

Producer

The razing of the Carolton Convalescent Hospital’s main office in Fairfield, Connecticut offered me one last look into the original home of Frank Donald Coster.

Coster, alias William Johnson, alias Philip Musica, is the most untraceable figure in American history. His story is a challenge to the historical process itself.

My ongoing investigation into Coster taught me research is controlled demolition. I needed the tenacity to tear down walls and the sensitivity to meet and protect what was fragile behind them.

I also needed the vision to see the unknown path and the patience to stick with it. The creative technique I value most besides experimentation is attention to detail. One has to care deeply.

The Web allows more of us to pursue projects that are meaningful and unique. If you want to produce your passion project, but don’t know where to begin, contact me below.

Teacher

My first graduate communications students believed books, lectures, and writing workshops were obsolete. I rewrote my lessons incorporating their online metaphors and language to change their minds.

Another group of my students, made of veteran reporters and producers, feared the Web and interactive communications. I flipped my lectures around and used writing lessons to encourage them to embrace technology.

Teaching taught me communication is translation for each new audience you encounter. I call my lesson plans algorithms. They are effective methods for sharing and comparing different languages and worlds with one another.

I teach like I produce. I guide a creative group through a prearranged course of improvisational experiments and obstacles to encourage the best of their abilities.

My interactive courses experiment with communications, the Web, and the classroom. At my students’ requests, I’m compiling them into ebooks you can order on Amazon.

Writer

Bumpspark is a word I coined for the title of a television pilot. It means a deliberate mistake made to discover an unexpected connection.

Aristotle taught us creativity resides in accidental combinations. For example, Robert Jarvik, inventor of the surgical stapler and the artificial heart, brought the skills of a former engineering student to the worlds of medicine and surgery.

Writing and language combine dissimilar ideas when they make metaphors. “Shall I compare thee to a summer’s day?” Everything new is an effective recombination of what already exists.

Effective is the hard part. You can’t predict chemistry between people or ideas; you can only foster unexpected meetings. That is my theory of producing, teaching, and writing.

That’s why I love the Web . It inserts conversation and serendipity into every discipline and expertise. If you want to read more about my ideas, visit my blog on interactivity—called Bumpspark—and more of my writing samples below.

Get your copy of
The Interactive Voice:
How the Web
Teaches Good Writing
and Good Writing
Wins the Internet

on Amazon: