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Archive for June, 2008

Le personal blog est mort, vive le personal blog

Thursday, June 26th, 2008

The move from big blogs to [micro blogs such as Twitter and Jaiku] says a lot about our cultural attention span. One or two lines of text are about as much writing as we can handle — either creating or consuming it.

Rob Peters, quoted from “Is Personal Blogging Fast-Fading?” [alternet.org]

I think he’s right about our cultural attention span — even our personal attention span is quickly becoming so pop-culture driven that we will all be screaming Japanese girls soon. 15 minutes of fame is too much, 15 seconds is about right.

But I’m still here…

Not that anyone cares. I have 0 followers on Technorati [technorati.com] (and an authority of 2 if that means anything to you…). Twitter [twitter.com]? 12 followers, of which 2 are people I actually know, the rest? People trying to sell something or people obsessed with Facebook [facebook.com] like social status — how many connections they have somehow equals self esteem.

Really it does not depress me that there are very few people out there that hear my digital voice over the cacophony of other voices. I keep confusion going for myself. Yelling into the abyss is therapeutic, even if the abyss does not yell back (which, come to think of it is probably more scary that just silence in response, I don’t know what I’d do if I suddenly became popular.) I don’t force it, it’s still fun so I keep going. If only a few people ever read my rantings that’s OK. I have been having fun lately with the ‘random’ link I added to the menu (just next to the ‘archive’ and ‘search’ options at the top.) I get to go back and see old entries, some of which show just a how bad my spelling and grammar are (or where before Firefox added a built in spell checker, it’s much less atrocious now — see I could never possibly spell that word on my own.) Some are so out-of-context that I think it’s obvious why no one keeps up with the posts here; they don’t make sense unless you already know me and what’s going on.

It’s been almost seven years since this incarnation of confusion went live and three blogging platforms later I’m still going. The golden age of blogging may be coming to an end but I think I missed it anyway (and I think I may even predate it, judging by the fact that I was hand rolling posts in HTML before LiveJournal [livejournal.com] went live. I’ll keep posting my “dull personal commentary with a side order of self-importance” [zeldman.com] as Jeffery Zeldman would refer to my rantings. At least for now. You know, ’cause “I’m not dead!” and “I feel happy!”

Baby beggs or Little LumMY?

Wednesday, June 25th, 2008

Picking names for your soon-to-be-born child is not easy. It is made twice as difficult by the fact that you don’t know the sex of your bundle of joy. With a month left till full term we have not chosen a name yet.

This is not due to lack of ideas. The problem is that every nice name you can think of comes with too much baggage for one of the parents; “it’s and exes name,” “I had a nasty coworker with that name,” “That’s my friends kids name,” or some other conflict. I suspect that none of these issue will be relevant for the objecting party after a few days of it being the name of your child, all other references will vanish until you are reminded of them by someone.

On top of all this we can add the interesting angle of Ang Moh (white people) names and Chinese names. Seems there are some sort of strange rituals involved with picking Chinese names here in Singapore but since the child will be half white and half Chinese I think it would be cool to give them both names. The fact that I know about five words in Chinese (mostly related to ordering food or expletives) and the fact that they are in Mandarin not Cantonese means I can only say “hey this word sounds cool, what does it mean?” And then I get the inevitable “it means ‘stupid white man who does not understand Chinese ask stupid questions.” This does not make a very auspicious Chinese name.

Of course anyone who has known me for long knows that I have always intended to name my child “Nebuchadnezzar, King of the Fertile Crescent” buy my wife objects to this. I could pull a Major Major and just put it on the birth certificate but I don’t want to pay for the therapy later.

On the other hand I’m not above accepting bribes. Currently Lord Jim I of Sol is offering:

  • 6000 head of cattle
  • 3000 goats
  • 2000 veggie dogs
  • 1788 pastries of your choosing
  • 1-16 rat(s) (tame)
  • 3 Cheetos

Anyone got a better offer?

The symbols of power

Friday, June 20th, 2008

IMG_0460

More Fragments From Hell

Wednesday, June 18th, 2008

I don’t know who wrote these but I found them on the old hell.com chat rooms. I like them. (Note: I ran a spell check on them and fixes some typos.)

First fragment:
: should he sacrifice for the progress of technology and knowledge and science, or should he escape from the system and live in peace and solitude
: he didn’t really believe it
: just repeating cliches of reassurance
: he told his self
: don’t let these insecurities slow you down
: never any answers
: always more questions
: is she the one?
: is it wrong to enjoy life when there is so much suffering in the world
: is it happening now somewhere else?
: has all this happened before?
: do the ends justify the means?
: what is the ultimate goal of humanity?
: what is the nature of the self?
: when death comes, will i remember life?
: who was i before i was born?
: is there such a thing as free will?
: he asked the big questions
: what was he sent here to do?
: it rang through his thoughts instinctively
: seek first the kingdom seek first the kingdom
: always in the depths of his mind lurked the remnants of his religious leanings
: he knew he did

Second fragment:
: was she just another habit
: a habit he lived for
: the dangers of love
: when your reason for living can leave
: what did he really want in life?
: why was he here if not for her?
: its not like she was the first girl to be his life
: he had to better his self
: he knew he did
: always in the depths of his mind lurked the remnants of his religious learnings
: seek first the kingdom seek first the kingdom
: it rang through his thoughts instinctively
: what was he sent here to do?
: he asked the big questions
: is there such a ting as free will?
: who was i before i was born?
: when death comes, will i remember life?
: what is the nature of the self?
: what is the ultimate goal of humanity?
: do the ends justify the means?
: has all this happened before?
: is it happening now somewhere else?
: is it wrong to enjoy life when there is so much suffering in the world
: is she the one?
: always more questions

We are all atheists…

Saturday, June 14th, 2008

“We are all atheists about most of the gods that humanity has ever believed in. Some of us just go one god further.”

Richard Dawkins, more on RichardDawkins.net [richarddawkins.net].