Comments on 2011-07-16 Unease online

The worthwhile promises of the internet were crafted with love, or passion, or anger; by geeks, and nerds, by mad people, by people with crazy ideas, people who wanted to share stuff and ideas for no reason except that they could. They built a web of dreams with cosy corners, unexplored darknesses, odd little turnings, delighted poetry to find and marvel at.

Then the stampeding herd came, with 1,000,000 corporations flying overhead in helicopters and nets, looking for the place to catch the best cash, the places to fish for the the best loot.

The babling mountain stream isn’t quite the same after the herd runs through it, and a dozen industry execs have worked out how to extract every dollar out of it.

To paraphrase, I doubt many of our generation will lie on our deathbeds and say “I wish I spent more time surfing the internet.”

I should go learn to surf instead, anyone know a good site by by beginner kit?

Seriously though, I stopped using Facebook, Friends Reunited, linked-in, I dropped the links to all the news sites that just waste my time... working up to deleting my Slashdot account... I stopped watching movies designed to make time pass, I want movies that make me think, or make me go WOW - I’ll let you know when I find one...

And yet here I am on Google +

Three positive things though,

I bought a Kindle stuffed it full of books I wanted to read, and take it everywhere - I have read more books in the last two months than the previous two years, and I have not felt I had to especially make time to do so.

I resolved to finish the book I’d been planning to write for 10 years, and did so, working on the prequel now

I bought a big telescope, and plan to use it. Now there’s a hobby that takes me away from the internet.

– James Moffatt, 2011-07-21

You bought a big telescope!? You are so awesome I want to play Pathfinder in Basel until night fall and check out the solar system. :)

Also, very poetic comment. Loved it.

– Alex Schroeder, 2011-07-21

You inspired me to write with your post :P

You’d be welcome any time, but maybe I should also host a starry night party?

It arrives next week... v.excited. I understand that Jupiter’s red spot is visible with it, the rings of Saturn of course, plus loads of the moons of both. Mars is good for the major craters, and the Moon should be quite a sight.

I hope to see lots of nebula as well, though they will be black and white of course.

I am not sure if I am cheating by buying a “goto” telescope, you tell it what you want to see, and it finds it for you, kind of like cheating I think, but I got it anyway

– James Moffatt, 2011-07-21

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