Outrage on Social Media articles; State of the Union

Things I'm thinking about, after switching back to a list-based list of thoughts because Gutenberg headers annoy me: Gutenberg headers annoy me. I'm thinking of switching back to my comfortable editing process where I'm not constantly griping about my editor. It's a flow thing.Good article from Medium, paywalled (so if you don't have a Medium… Continue reading Outrage on Social Media articles; State of the Union

Places, football, Facebook

Things I have learned recently, I think: Every so often, you figure out that you are exactly where you are supposed to be at this particular time. That can be reassuring or frightening, I suppose, depending on your outlook.College football this year has been boring. Sure, I'm affected by not having a pony in the… Continue reading Places, football, Facebook

Wondering if you’re loved, literally?, python dependencies

Things I've learned recently: If you really want to know if you have value, post something of questionable worth on the Internet. You'll immediately have a bunch of people correcting you. That's not to say you should post anything harmful - for goodness' sake, don't do that - but post something that makes an assertion… Continue reading Wondering if you’re loved, literally?, python dependencies


I was thinking fairly shallow thoughts about perception this morning, in the context of an old friend and how our relationship has changed over the years, and a pattern occurred to me about how I see people. I see individuals as a sort of web of relationships to other people and concepts, such that every… Continue reading Multidimensional

My rules for social media

Recently, a fellow I know on Facebook mentioned unfriending someone (for very good reasons), and it got me thinking a little more on the rules on how I use the site. I find that I have four fairly simple rules. Rule #1: Add People I Might Respect as Friends I add people who I think… Continue reading My rules for social media

Facebook: good and bad… really bad

I find I have a difficult relationship with [Facebook](https://wwwfacebookcom/josephottinger) I think Facebook has a lot of potential value, but with so many people using it so differently, it ends up taking almost as much as it gives. It not only gives me a neutral environment to interact with friends from my distant past - people from middle school whom I still remember fondly! It's given me a chance to see old friends' lives - as their careers and their children mature. It's given me a chance to vicariously participate in the things that matter to them - graduations, successes, failures. I've had closure for things from years and years ago - conversations with people who had tried to bully me, whether ignorantly or not. It's given us a chance to see each other as people, actual adults, as opposed to the caricatures created by first impressions of strangers. Facebook is excellent at fostering light connections, but such connections do a poor job of representing actual *people* - including me. On Facebook, an offhand statement, meant mildly and in context, appears as a core belief, a statement I am willing to defend to the death and because of the nature of first impressions, no amount of context changes that impression. Incidentally, I think libertarians who advocate anarchy are wrong, although I do think a society composed *solely* of people with decent rational self-interest could exist and prosper in pure anarchy. But Facebook readers *tend* to not recognize that continuum and its potential for growth and refinement. ) But at the same time, in America we advocate innocence until guilt is proven - and Facebook ignores the potential innocence. I'm tempted to filter Facebook quite a bit - spend a few days looking at who posts most often on my feed, and what they post.

Conversation is the roar of the tide, not a ping from a radar.

One of the things I've noticed from watching Facebook is that the nature of conversation is being fractured. Facebook, Twitter, and other such mediums encourage the use of soundbites, basically snappy and memorable phrases. Conversations become about headlines, rather than content or context. The thing is: that's not how we actually exist. Our conversations are… Continue reading Conversation is the roar of the tide, not a ping from a radar.