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User Journal

Journal Journal: A return from facebook 5

Hi world,

I'm currently trying out a new behavior trait: "going back to the way it was before." Sounds exciting, huh. Color me Facebook-less since 1.5 months and frankly, this is the first time since I feel the need to actually share something.

My idea was this: what if I would write down and re-visit the steps that lead up to that decision to leave the largest social network in the world? Why? Well, for one thing, I think the idea to go back to earlier practices (such as writing a full blown more than 140 character journal) is going to move slowly back into the center of our collective conscious over the next 5 years. People will start to realize it's the sane thing to do, or so at least that is my guess. But let's look into the dynamics of how I got there.

Many of us remember the so called "browser wars", the epic "os flame-wars", or even further down the burning question wether gnu or unix would be preferable, wether java would be worth it compared to c++, etc.. 30 or 40 years ago, these discussions were of a technical level and nerdism that few can aspire to imagine today. These discussions, much like today, were full of noise, trolls and the occasional insightful remark. These wars were fought in obscure IRC channels and BBS forums, but there was one thing pretty special about them. The technological limits were the only roadblock that stopped our brains from dumping their content in 7 or 8 bit streams that could be shared and read by our fellow peers and friends (and foes). After the browser war came the Napster incident, the BearShare and KaZaa incidents and many systems that predate our current torrent / tor p2p sharing infrastructure. Curiously, I never read about social network wars, which of course also happened. A quick look at the Wikipedia page shows a whopping 208 unique social network websites that attempt to capture our attention, every day life, pictures, personal data, emotions, furniture, love for smiling shit and everything else in between. Not every single one of them survived of course. Who remembers Myspace? Bolt? MS LiveSpaces? or Hyves? So yeah there were wars, but the concept of war was never prominently played, things just "evolved".

So there I was in December 2016, pondering if I still needed facebook. I struck me that I had refrained from posting personal things. In fact in multiple runs, I had slowly started to remove personal data, simply because it increasingly looked ridiculous. Would you start yelling your city of birth and birthday just about anyone in the street? Your marital status? Would you show all the pictures of all your travels and everything else to complete strangers? Of course not. Sure you can spend endless hours 'managing' all that information. Such fun. So much to re-post, so much 'news' to share.

Until you've had it with the latest policy change. Until you realize you are again indicating people they are sharing fake 'news' or hoaxes. Until you realize all your friends posts start with 'OMG'. Or that you can't include 2 images in one post that blatantly refute each-other, because, hey it's facebook. Until you realize that all posts shared say: "look, this is *really* interesting, but I'm just going to dump it here because I'm tired of pretending my shit is more interesting than yours. eat it or die."

Ego needs a cookie. I did truly post some interesting stuff. Stuff about stock markets that are indicative of how defunct our world is. Stuff from NOAA that says how fucked up our climate has become already. Stuff in research papers that tell something about the very structure of our universe. Stuff about brain functions, important findings on cellular level to fight disease, etc, etc.. Not that very many people ever reacted to 'my' shared crap. At best, people reacted because I reacted to their posts first.

On Januari 1st 2017, I stopped playing that pathetic me-me game, and went back to my previous behavior: I traded facebook with sleep. I read books. I started to play FinalFantasy again. I still check my news channels, but you know what.. somehow I'm getting better at finding new resources, new pointers. And I'm looking at much more meaningful content. See back of this post.

The date is not coincidental. On December 31st 2016, we were out for new-years-eve at my parents-in-law. It was a fairly modest get together with nice food, cozy dinner, and a bit of fireworks on TV. In Belgium and The Netherlands, there is a tradition to watch comedians that recount how they saw the past year, such as Wim Helsen or Michael Van Peel. Comparing them to John Stewart / Daily Show would do neither party any favors, but in my book they're equally good. In fact they're all best in their class.

While the evening shot past mid-night, we all wished each-other happy new year and stayed up for a while until the inevitable sleep and early morning came around. Nothing very shocking, but little did we know that at that very same time, somebody had cracked open the front door of our house and was going through all our possessions, stealing laptops, cameras, my bike I use daily with mounted child-seat, golden jewelry, and possibly other stuff, making a huge mess in the process. We were literally 100km south.

We arrived home at 7PM, found some people in front of our house gesturing at the break-in. After the initial shock, my cool kicks in. The first thing to do was to verify the house, call the police and go through the whole procedure. Yes, it's nerve wrecking and sleep-inducing at the same time. Our hope that the police finds the culprit is virtually nil, while at the same time you're supposed to be angry and mad, hopeful and rational. I can't do that emotion very convincingly. I just kept going until everyone was asleep.

When I finally sat down for a few minutes (or hours - the door was badly damaged, so I kept guard the whole night in freezing temperatures) I had time go over all the events. Time gives me oxygen. I'm slow like that, I step on the brakes when I'm going too fast. Given that laptops had been stolen, I decided it was time to change passwords. We still had our phones after all, android, so pretty vulnerable if they could hack into our stuff first. And then it suddenly occurred to me that selling this 'event' in my life on facebook was really the last thing I ever would want to do. Much like all the other important events in my life which I did not share. And so I dropped facebook and Google+ overnight. I'm searching with duckduckgo now. I haven't had a single moment of regret. I sometimes am curious of what is going on there of course, but I imagine it's just the same shit again and again, in different colors.

So what makes me share all this here then, you wonder? Well, all of this is old news, it's also much more digested, no images, no screaming. It's a wall of text full of close to logical long sentences. Those looking for quick fixes will be off running to their click pools after half a paragraph. Those reading this will probably not care and never comment. So who is left? It's me. And that's just fine.

Much in concordance with my earlier post, I pledge for us all to go back to earlier times, pick up things that were loved but lost in the fabric of spacetime. Let's go back and be ace at it. Hello world!

Greets, .i

ps: Forget Trump, check this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GEwuGHFF7qE&t=10s&index=1&list=LL4dYPyntjgFh1JxPMFxCOsw

User Journal

Journal Journal: Fringe Search

I don't expect anything from this site, this post, or you.

The only thing I offer is a gentle "Hi."

Yes. 2 more years of silence. I'm sure that time brought you various experiences of the short span of time we get to enjoy on this blue sphere, as it did for me. Like solving a giant puzzle game, with the solution running away in ever more dimensions with every step you take. Frustrations, yes, but no regrets, and rewards that warrant the journey.

The finality of the whole is gently setting in on me, which is probably why I came here to say hi. Take a break. It seems I often say hi without any finality involved..

I'm sure some neurons in my head are having a party now, as I'm typing in this old familiar all too often endlessly ranting journal. This is funny. To read my own age-old reflections again, I mean. So comforting.

Re-discover, then re-build once more. Embrace the change ad infinitum.

Wishing you the same, and kindness to all,

Little Darkness / Andr0meda / proud dad / loving husband / mad scientist / code dreamer

User Journal

Journal Journal: Circular Refuge on reddit 5

It's a happening place. There are upwards of 3, maybe 4 posts a day!
You should join us, if you like.

http://www.reddit.com/r/CircularRefuge
(message mods to join; can't let the riffraff on reddit in! Just our very own special riffraff.)

User Journal

Journal Journal: Annual check in 15

Hey, Slashdot was instrumental in finding Twue Wuv for me, so I couldn't possibly leave it forever. The 14 day comment limit, however, is unfortunate for those of us who stop by only every 6-9 months. :^)

I have read your updates and am interested in your lives and would love to leave a comment expressing as much.

So, hey, Red5, congratulations on the marriage and baby and stuff! And all the other babies that have happened in the past 5 years or so for everybody else! And marriages! And diplomas! And new jobs! And sorry/congrats about the divorces!

User Journal

Journal Journal: The Good Slashkeeping Seal of Approval

Coined this today. Sounds like a winner - an award for the coolest application of technology. Doesn't have to be useful, just very, very cool.

User Journal

Journal Journal: A long way from home 1

It's nearly the end of the year. I noticed I average about a post a year now on this once so fantastic news site that I barely check up on these days. I haven't seen the oodles of good posts that whooshed by, nor have I seen the inventive new types of trolls that lurked here since when I was in University. That's a perplexing 10 years ago by now.

Anyway, long introduction short to say my wife Isabelle and I are expecting our first kiddo in about 4.5 months from now. Things are still early so we're clinging onto pieces of wood all over the place, but the vibe is good! All sorts of new issues spring to life, such as daycare, home safety.. welcome to the real world it is :)

During the years I've seen millions of colleagues either getting pregnant themselves or making their spouses pregnant, spawning a fountain of kids and sending tons of birth-cards this way. Not without a bit of healthy envy did I wish for something fantastic like that to happen in my life too. And then you suddenly see the years tick away and settle for life without kids. I still loved to care for kids though. I must have bought truckloads of stuff for newborns of people I knew at the time. So finally it's time to change the tables. :)

The long wait for 2nd life in my wife's belly was generally first thought to be caused my clumsiness with the other sex, but after a while it became clear we had to resort to more scientific approaches to make a baby. Lot's of bruised identities and emotional roller-coasters later, it worked! It worked! Yeey! So we are incredibly proud and happy to be watching the echo monitor at the gynecologist's, different patches and shades of grey revealing what soon will roam this earth! Incredible! We even bought some sort of microphone to hear the baby's heart-rate and it's a steady 160 bpm, which we fall asleep with.

4 Years ago I started at the biggest game entertainment venture in BE, 2 years ago we got married, last year we rebuilt the back of our house (not a particular smooth ride but nonetheless super glad we did), this year we've made our first kid, and next year hopefully the sunlight reflects in 2 extra pretty eyes! Would have signed up for this if they showed it to me 10 years ago!

The gender ? That's still a classified secret which I hope I can announce in a few months, (and thus up the average of my posting here). I dare you all techies to try to crack the secret :) Cheers all!

Android

Journal Journal: Even Caffeine Is Failing Me Now 1

Who wants post caffeine withdrawals? Not me. So I drink watered down coffee. It only takes a small amount of caffeine to kick-start someone, anything after that is wasted and makes coming down off it that much more regrettable. I also like to sleep at night, not twitch and throw all my covers on the floor.

I'm tired. Bone tired. Caffeine can't do anything about that. Need to hit the hay earlier. Stop eating junk, too.

Gonna be a challenge though. Got an Android tablet today. Want to try all sorts of fun stuff. Install Apache and PHP on it. See if I can make it wireless server. That'd be killer fun.

Ah. But need sleep.

Decisions. Decisions.

User Journal

Journal Journal: Everywhere is home

Watery steps across the sky,

drops of naked new surprise,

smiled into the megaphone,

home onto my mind's throne.

User Journal

Journal Journal: The Poet Inside Us 1

We belong to the poet inside us.
It is our owner, our ruler, our king.
To be a slave to anything else is death
by slow, ragged steps.
Yet to follow where our fancy takes us,
wherever, whenever, forever,
is the greatest freedom man can bear.

User Journal

Journal Journal: Just testing out some journal submission changes 8

I don't actually have anything to say. Kathleen is due any day, and I'm looking forward to a few weeks of staying home, getting poor sleep, and changing diapers.
But mostly I'm testing to see if journal saving works properly.

User Journal

Journal Journal: Updates to Journal System 13

We've made some significant updates to the submission/journal system. Visiting Submissions and Journals yields a new form that allows stuff like tags to the data types. There are a number of annoying bugs, but for the most part the dust is starting to settle. More notes will be coming, but this journal entry is really just me putting the final test on the new Journal form.

User Journal

Journal Journal: Sunny side up! 1

Excited! That's the word.

It has that funky flavour of good vibes, but it also contains that aftertaste of some lesser vibes. It has Obama making us forget previous steps in the evolutionary chain, it has economic meltdown, it has a planet with a weather fury, it has outrageous coding pleasure as well as millions of unpaid hours of monkey work. It has a whole new world and a new fantastic point of view. And it has Isabelle, a girl I will marry in about 1 month!

And who could ever even imagine me typing that exciting prospect today!

Cheers!

User Journal

Journal Journal: I'm alive, and now have a blog. 1

Well, I've started a blog over at http://sethblank.com/. It's in serious need of some design love, and a lot more content, but I need feedback!

Right now, it's more business/entrepreneurship oriented, but I plan on delving a lot into tech and the world at large.

Comments, please! (And yes, I'm alive.)

Thanks!

Windows

Journal Journal: Bill Gates Apologizes for Windows, Offers Compensation.

Today, Bill Gates apologized to everyone in the world for the "horrible, terrible piece of shit" that is Windows. He is also offering compensation to users for "that fucking time vampire" in the form of coupons good for one free visit to The Fellatio Barn for every time a user has had to reinstall Windows or experienced any kind of problem, and is offering one million dollars to each tech worker, even if they don't work directly with Windows or any other Microsoft product, due to what Mr. Gates has dubbed "The uber retard-o factor" which is a form of contagious stupidity brought on by proximity to Windows.

What? It's funnier than some of the stories I've seen. =)

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