Art Authority Blog
December 31, 2021. Open Door Networks Inc., the company that in the last 27 years brought you
Mac-focused dial-up Internet, web page creations tools and easy web publishing, one of the first coffee shops on the Internet, sophisticated Mac server management tools, the Ashland Fiber Network, perhaps the first wireless Starbucks anywhere, Macintosh personal firewalls and other security tools, Internet Security for your Macintosh, AppleTalk-to-IP migration tools, a new way to experience the web, one of the first July 4 parade webcasts, an iPhone app on day one of the iPhone App Store, 100+ iPhone apps after that, an iPad app on day one of the iPad (the award-winning Art Authority for iPad), Art Authority K-12, a decade of college intern programs, Art Channel on day one of the Apple TV App Store, Art Authority LLC, Ranking Artists: an Internet-era Analysis, 1000Museums fine-art reproductions and much more
is open no longer. It is with pride in this history, but a touch of sadness too, that we announce its formal dissolution. Having sold its 1994-acquired opendoor.com domain name to a company now worth $1 billion, and transferred its apps and other assets to Art Authority LLC (the app that became a company), closing time has finally come to Open Door. Onwards…
We’re happy to announce that Art Channel 2.0 is now available for your Apple TV, just in time for the holidays. We could have called it Art Channel 4K, because its main new feature is even better, higher resolution art for your 4K television.
Over the past couple decades, TV has gone from SD (standard definition, around since the 1940s) to HD (turn of the 21st century) to 4K (mid last decade). Computers, iPhones and iPads have similarly increased in screen resolution.
In all cases, our apps and art have kept up. Our first iPhone art app had images with resolutions around 1000 pixels on the bigger side. Our ground-breaking Art Authority for iPad app pushed that to 2000 pixels, which worked especially well when Apple introduced the Retina display in 2012. The Apple TV and Art Channel were next in 2015, but it wasn’t until the Apple TV 4K that the resolution of art on your television could really surpass that of a Retina display iPad. But it has now! 4K images, as displayed by Art Channel 2.0, are nearly 4000 pixels on the bigger side.
Art Channel 2.0 (also available for iPad) introduces some new, dynamic features too, which we’ll be taking advantage of in the near future. So, as they say (anachronistically) in the TV business, stay tuned!
With the world, and our, attentions turned elsewhere, we missed the ten-year anniversary of Apple’s shipping the iPad, and our shipping Art Authority for iPad with it. Just as with the iPhone, we had an app in the App Store on day one.
We were going to start year 10 of the Art Authority Summer Intern program in a couple months, but we’re pushing up the start as much as we can so art professors and students can consider the program now as everyone scrambles to put and attend art classes online.
Following are details based on previous programs; some may change. Especially if you’re an art professor, please let us know if there are ways we can modify the program to meet your needs. We will certainly be waiving some of the requirements.
As we’ve discussed a number of times on this blog, the Art Authority Summer Intern Program offers art and art history majors a 21st century alternative to traditional art docent internships. By working on our cutting-edge Art Authority apps and 1000Museums.com e-commerce site (museum-approved archival reproductions), technology-focused students gain experience with and exposure to a set of tools they’ll need as “art goes digital.”
We here at Art Authority have learned a lot over the past nine years, both as far as how to run the intern program and as far as what’s needed to keep our product line evolving. Students have learned a lot too, gained credit towards their major, and even found jobs as a result of the program (some have worked here). We’re really looking forward to another great and meaningful summer for all concerned.
If you or anyone you know is curious about the program, please check out the Summer Intern Program Web site for more information and an application form. The number of spaces are limited, so anyone interested should apply as soon as possible.
You likely now know us as Art Authority, but we got our start 25 years ago today as Open Door Networks, Inc. On January 4, 1995, Open Door’s founder, Alan Oppenheimer, left Apple Computer and Silicon Valley to move to Ashland Oregon and start a company to help Macintosh users experience a new communications and information system, “the Internet.” Alan had helped build the original Mac’s similar system (“AppleTalk”) and hoped he could bring that system’s user-focus, ease-of-use and security to Mac users as they joined the fledgling Internet.
The new company, and its AppleTalk-based Internet access system, was announced at Macworld in San Francisco on that day in 1995. It’s been a long, strange, 25-year trip since then. Not only was the Internet just getting started, but a new publishing and e-commerce system called the world wide web was just being rolled out as well. Open Door helped Mac users, and Apple itself, not just surf the Internet and Web, but also publish on it by turning the Macintosh into a world-class Web server. A series of server utilities followed (WebDoor, HomeDoor, LogDoor and MailDoor). Open Door also hosted a number of the earliest web sites.
Reading the handwriting written large and bold on the world wide web wall, Open Door worked with Apple on utilities to help Mac users migrate from AppleTalk-based networks to ones using Internet (IP) protocols. The next sign post was pretty clear too, reading “Be safe out there.” Thanks to its initial design, the Mac was already the most secure way to access the Internet, but Open Door’s DoorStop Personal Firewall helped further secure Macs against an ever-growing variety of international Internet evil-doers. DoorStop, licensed by Internet security company Symantec, became the basis of a suite of Macintosh Internet security products, including the book “Internet Security for Your Macintosh.”
Meanwhile, back in our home town of Ashland, Oregon, Open Door helped the city plan and roll out a city-wide fiber-optic network, and we used that network to provide free, wireless Internet access at the local Starbucks, perhaps the first Starbucks anywhere to provide that now-omnipresent service. We also used the network for one of the first-ever July 4 parade webcasts.
In early 2004, Alan and Open Door were asked to present a keynote talk, “A History of Macintosh Networking” at the Mac’s 20th anniversary celebration. The presentation was again at Macworld, where the company had been introduced nine years before.
In 2007, Steve Jobs introduced the iPhone, the biggest change to computing (and society in general) since the personal computer. It was immediately clear that Open Door had a role to play with that world-changing device, but it wasn’t clear what that role was. We had an app available day one of the App Store (iEnvision), and would introduce over 100 apps within the first year. But by the time of Apple’s next game-changer, the iPad in 2010, it was clear that our classic-art viewing app was the big winner.
We just didn’t know how big! Available again on day one, Art Authority for iPad would be featured by Apple many times, and win the Apple Rewind award as best reference app two years in a row. The educational version, Art Authority K-12, would be highlighted by Apple VP Phil Schiller in a keynote at the Guggenheim Museum, and iPhone and Mac versions would follow, along with a curated version for the Apple TV, Art Channel. The Art Authority database would grow to over 100,000 works of art from nearly 1000 museums.
We were pleased and honored by the difference we were able to make at this new intersection of art and technology. Things got even more interesting when the real art authorities found us. We ended up changing the name of the company to Art Authority LLC, acquiring the pioneering fine art retailer 1000Museums, and making major contributions to the art world in which we are now so firmly entrenched. Our museum-approved archival reproductions are second to none, and we’ve given back hundreds of thousands of dollars directly to the art world in the form of royalties. We’ve also sponsored an internship program for nine years running.
From dial-up Internet to fine art reproduction over a quarter century. Quite the ride. We can’t wait to find out what the next quarter century will bring!
In keeping with modern-day tradition, Art Authority and our 1000Museums brand of museum-approved archival prints would like to help you ring in the holidays with free apps and special pricing on our prints.
Our award-winning Art Authority for iPad and iPhone apps are FREE this weekend. So if you haven’t already, please go out and get them. You can then browse the collection of over 100,00 classic works of art from hundreds of museums worldwide.
And what do you do after visiting the museum(s)? Go through the museum gift shop, of course. The 1000Museums gift shop is built into the apps, or you can get to it directly at 1000Museums.com.
And did we mention everything at 1000Museums is 30-50% off this weekend? And shipping in the U.S. is free!
So what are waiting for? Happy Holidays!
For nine years running now, Art Authority has sponsored a college internship program. Our interns have usually been art majors with an interest in technology. This year they were technology majors with an interest in art. And they are graduating this weekend!
Brian and Miles, computer science majors at Southern Oregon University here in Ashland, have helped us make major progress in a new mobile app which we hope to be able to have available in the not-too-distant future. As part of the SOU computer science capstone requirement, they also earned college credit and gained real-world experience with both technology and art.
We’ve always said that we here at Art Authority live at the intersection of technology and the arts, and we’re happy to have been able to provide yet another set of internships at that intersection, just coming from a somewhat different direction.
Congratulations Brian and Miles, and thank you for all your help!
As a user of our award-winning Art Authority app line, or a customer of our 1000Museums brand of top-quality reproductions (available through museum gift shops and 1000Museums.com), you’re probably familiar with those parts of Art Authority LLC. Until today, you may have been unfamiliar with the third part of our business: Fine Art Custom Printing.
FACP, spearheaded by digital printmaking pioneer R. Mac Holbert, is our brand for fine art printing services for artists and photographers. Many FACP clients are renowned artists in their own right, but rely on Mac to hone their vision into the best prints possible.
Today we are proud to announce that we have worked with celebrated contemporary realist painter and third-generation artist Jamie Wyeth to make his works directly available through our FACP program and the new web site FocusOnJamieWyeth.com. Mr. Wyeth played an integral role in designing and developing his FACP offerings, from choosing and proofing the initial set of works available to the selection of the special high-quality paper to be used.
We look forward to additional work with Mr. Wyeth and with other artists of his renown. So expect to hear a lot more about Art Authority Fine Art Custom Printing in the near future!
Art Authority, through our 1000Museums brand, is pleased and proud we were able to help out with a great show opening today (February 22) at the New Britain Museum of American Art. It’s called “The Beyond: Georgia O’Keeffe and Contemporary Art.”
NBMAA asked us to create a number of framed reproductions of this quintessentially American painter’s key works (along with prints and postcards for sale), and we were more than happy to do so. If you’re anywhere near Connecticut’s NBMAA, don’t miss this show!
(Just in case you couldn’t tell, these photos are of the reproductions in their gift shop, not the real thing!)
The show originated at the Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art before traveling to the North Carolina Museum of Art as well. We were privileged to work on the show at these too fine locations as well.
As part of our Be-Sure-You-Get-It-In-Time sale, the award-winning Art Authority for iPad and iPhone apps are completely free this week. We’re hoping all you last-minute Christmas shoppers will use the apps (or the 1000Museums.com web site) to take advantage of the last few days you can order our 1000Museums archival prints and get them in time for Christmas* at great sale prices (30% off through promotion code INTIME30).
So, if there’s anyone left on your gift list (and we’re betting there is), please download the apps (if you haven’t already), go to the built-in 1000Museums Gift Shop, and put in your orders. After that you can enjoy the apps for free throughout 2019 and beyond.
*See our holiday ordering deadlines page for details. Custom-framed prints should be ordered by Wednesday, December 12.