Inspired by a Columbia class he taught in science fiction, he wrote his first book Technophobia! Science Fiction Visions of Posthuman Technology. Most recently, he published a short ebook: Finding Fela: My Strange Journey to Meet the Afro-Beat King in Lagos, Nigeria based on his trip to Africa to meet the legendary Nigerian musician Fela Kuti. This one is available on Smashwords.com and Amazon, among others including iTunes.
Further, Dan wrote the chapters "Techno-Totalitarianism in Alien" for the book The Culture and Philosophy of Ridley Scott (2013), "Lucifer Rising and Falling” for the book The Rolling Stones and Philosophy(2012), "AutoFac" for Philip K. Dick and Philosophy (2011), “Cyborg Goddess" for the book Anime and Philosophy (2010), and "The Wretched of New Caprica" for the book Battlestar Galactica and Philosophy (2009). An essay "Island of Lost Souls" was also published in Quarterly Review of Film and Video [V.28] and a chapter called "Technological Transcendence" for the forthcoming book Avatar and Philosophy.
As a journalist, Dan wrote stories for such publications as Alternative Press, The Guardian, Salon.com, Chicago Tribune, Chicago Sun-Times, Chicago Reader, New City, and PopMatters.com. Many of these can be viewed on this Website at ShockZine.
While still an undergraduate in the University of Illinois philosophy department, he wrote "On Killing and Letting Die" published by venerable British philosophy periodical Analysis. This essay continues to live on: most recently in the book Killing and Letting Die (Fordham University Press). This article was included in two other books and cited in more than 50 books including Bioethics - Oxford Readings in Philosophy (Oxford University Press, 2001).
As a filmmaker, Dan directed two episodes of the Comedy Central show Strangers With Candy, starring Stephen Colbert, Paul Dinello, and Amy Sedaris. "To Be Young, Gifted, and Blank" can be found on the Season 1 DVD; "Yes, You Can't" can be found on the Season 2 DVD. The first one went great; while, the second was much more difficult with various location, script and outside casting issues. Still, the final result is pretty funny.
In the 1990s, Dan made several award-winning films with his nephew Paul Dinello. These films included "Beyond the Door," starring Paul and Stephen Colbert; "Shock Asylum" also starring Paul and Stephen Colbert, and "Wheels of Fury" with Amy Sedaris and Paul. “Shock Asylum” was the most widely seen, playing at the Sundance film festival among many others & winning first prize at the New York Underground Film Festival. It played for many years on BRAVO & Sundance cable network and has been added to the Sundance permanent collection at UCLA.
Before these his most successful films were the punk-disco musical documentary “Rock Lobster” and the Fela music video “Army Arrangement.” All of these films are available at Shock Film on two DVDs: Shock Productions V. Onei and Shock Productions V. Two.
Dan taught for 33 years at Columbia College Chicago mainly in the Film and Video Department but also in the History, Humanities and Social Science Department. He helped initiate and then directed the school’s first multi-media program that has since evolved a game design major.