Archive for October, 2008

My Heart on My Sleeve, Not on My Bumper

Tuesday, October 7th, 2008

While I like guns and shit-tons of money, I also think we should be able to kill babies and not have ill-conceived wars with oil-rich countries. Yeah, I said it. Some might say that an inflammatory sentence like that is the last thing we need, but petty squabbling has left the two candidates to fight over each other’s intangibles.

While I’m not completely behind the Obama/Biden ticket (mostly because of Mr. Biden) I sure as hell can’t get behind the crusty, out of touch, old man and his even less experienced than the competition, hick running mate. McCain/Palin scares the crap out of me and as I walk the streets, looking at way too many lawn signs and bumper stickers supporting them I worry about how close the election will once again be.

This is not to say that I don’t see as many, if not more, “Hope” being bandied about, but I like many others don’t often show our support so visibly in either direction. We’re left with polls that conflict with each other and media outlets who pretend to be impartial. Even when I try to aggregate all of this information and simplify it into simple red and blue, all I see is a blank canvas.

In the end, the most vocal supported on either side are the minority. They hold little sway in the bigger picture. Unless you believe in the conspiracy of rigged polls or feel that the electoral college is a broken, outmoded system (both of which I struggle with) then the election lies in the soft spoken heart of America.

Either way, half of us are going to think we’re fucked. I just don’t want it to be my half.

Distractions – My Life as an Artist Turned Digital Consumer.

Monday, October 6th, 2008

My ratio’s of digital input versus output have become so skewed that even though I realize that the disparity has become almost overwhelming I can do little about it. Like a debtor who borrows from the bank to pay off his credit card loans, I constantly find myself turning to the internet more and more to fill in the gaps left by the absence of my own creation.

While I have eschewed most of the trappings of the cable mentality, sitting through a crappy show to get to the good one, the quality of on demand content is rapidly growing. Legitimate and cheap TV and Movie sites are getting significantly better. Blogs update more often and with a high enough signal to noise filter offer a more “real world” picture than even the best news organizations. (Though don’t get me started on the true difference between blogs and the news.)

Social networks offer the ability to peek into someone’s life without the reciprocity of a real conversation. “Did I tell you about that?” “No, I read your blog.” I feel like I know people better than I do, or at least have a stronger relationship with them because of it.

RSS aggregators, notification services, push email and the like first leave me in a constant state of distraction and then make my computer nearly useless without an internet connection. While, I have more clock cycles than ever, I truly use them less and less. A dumb terminal to the internet would be sufficient.

Even now, as I test drive WriteRoom, a distraction-less text editor that takes up the whole screen and blocking everything but the text, I still find the internet creeping in via Growl notifications which I take for granted as always being there. There is always something to read, or watch or try.

Sadly, the title is much better than the text and once again, I’ve run out of motivation. The second half of the piece was meant to talk about my own production of digital content, but we might have to put that one into part two. (Who am I kidding?)