Friday, April 13, 2018

Random travels and micro-blogging and mystery hyperlinks

Really enjoying Steph Gray's family holiday updates of the randomised travel trip generated by Steph's home-grown app. The idea is half psychogeography, half healthy family adventure, and the updates are somewhere between a simple, enjoyable blog, and modern postcards of their daily fun.

It's great to see more exploratory, low-pressure, simple mixed media, micro-blogging around. It's something I've noticed Adrian Hon doing too, just dragging in snippets and updates from the net as needed, and covering a mix of content as well as format.

Technologists always want to tell you that One Thing is going to be the Next Big Thing. The 'blogosphere' is as guilty as Facebook and the Gopher resurgents in trying to persuade us that we need to choose a single platform as The Go-To Place. But as input devices become move from chunky keyboards to pen tablets to screen-based guesses to digital cameras to always-on personal data, how much sense does it make to have a single platform for your own publication? Why can't - or rather, why wouldn't - I spit out content in as many different ways as I have t-shirts? Who's to say that anyone must be able to see every piece of content that comes out of my brain?

Perhaps the future of personal identity is not in curating what content we publish alongside our avatar and bio, but in creating a sense of mystery around ourselves, in alluding to what isn't obvious to our own readers, a la Poppy. This idea has certain overlap with an Empty Technology idea, one infused by wu wei and taoism. As Lao Tzu put it:

"The Sage must dress in coarse robes while hiding precious jewels within his breast"

Perhaps content should open doors that you cannot walk through, questions your cannot answer, hyperlinks you cannot click.

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