Thursday, 8 February 2007

Our future online.

I simply had to put together a quick blog about this outstanding video produced by the guys at Kansas State University.

It explores with absolute clarity the changing world, sometimes I suppose people’s beliefs in the web, web2.0 and the social media are overly grandee, we have to remember that there are more people not online, connected and in the ‘loop’ than are. People may consider the ones in this ‘loop’ more important than those outside, they’re the decision makers, and trend breakers, the Shepard’s of the future, but again, let’s not get too carried anyway, not for the moment. I have no time.

This video raises the point at its end though, we, the industrialised world, east and west, are going to have to change out perspectives on almost everything due to this monumental shift in connectivity and community. This I believe also applies to that of hedonism, and this is why I feel this video is most appropriate for my blog. Derived pleasure no longer only takes the form of fine material goods, showing them off at your dinner party like Dorian Grey or some such. There’s community without leaving your office, living room, bedroom, coffee shop, anywhere, and how hedonism, high-living is defined within this realm is a question that will be interesting to answer. Thoughts on a postcard ladies and gentlemen.

Wednesday, 7 February 2007

Too many questions, too little time

I wish I could say the last few weeks were marred by entirely unprecedented events, however, they were not. Again, far too much excess in the form of alcohol and pain, bad crazies and liquid weirdness that was highlighted randomly with bouts of technological deliberations and a few beautiful women, neither however did I manage to fully satisfy; oh the tragedy.

Time to get a grip, take hold and make haste, Gordon Gekko had it right, taking the 80’s apart the only way he knew how, lust, power, greed, technology.

“Got to monitor my blood pressure, so
whatever you do, don't upset me…
Within 45 seconds, a microprocessor
computes your systolic and
diastolic pressure. Has an LCD
readout, and it's cost effective --
less than one visit to the doctor”
Gordon Gekko, Wallstreet, 1987

I’ve been trying to balance things with only a modicum of success; extremes in the wrong departments have, however, been detrimental to fulfilment and the good old adage of ‘self-actualization’. On the whole I’ve been entirely consumed with my work, the new job, chasing the dream…I’m getting close to figuring out what it is, and I believe it lies within the recesses of the internet. The ugly brute is changing, a shape-shifting beast that is becoming all consuming, empowering the people and emasculating the companies. ‘Taking the power back’ one might say…fucking wait a minute, slow right down…generations have been saying that since the land before time, regaining the power from the bad, giving to the good, what the fuck do we have now? Robin Hood living in his mother’s basement, making a difference whilst all the while sat calmly in a room held steadily between 70 and 72 degrees Fahrenheit.

No, wait, there are two parts to this story, to what I’m trying to say. Lets stick with one for now, attempt a short exercise at exploration, to reiterate; chasing the dream...Now, my personal goals have generally always lay at polar opposites, on one hand wanting to be the avant-garde sort, all floaty, wearing black, writing stories, capturing minds, raising hell, being a deviant, having the muse, the woman alongside and just riding life in the tormented yet classy fashion we’ve all become accustomed to seeing outlaws and rebels doing. However, I have in many ways always wanted to captain a nuclear trident submarine, or a Nimitz Class aircraft carrier, with clenched fists, cigar-in-mouth and pure white hair commanding fleets of men, becoming a warrior and one with humanity. I would never have said either were truly out of my reach, my natural short sightedness may have hindered me entering the Navy, but otherwise I believe I was always more than capable. Then there is the all-capturing, all-in-one bonanza dream where all wants become reality, the power, the notoriety, the infamy, the money, the women, the material possessions, everything, pure 80’s, Patrick Bateman crossed with Gordon Gekko crossed with Commander John Martix.

These parts of my personality have always played off against each other though, and one has seemingly always had the upper hand, believe it or not, this was the ‘artist’. I personally think this is the easy way out, the copout and as my sometimes awkward leapfrogging thoughts go, I begin to want to chase the money, the power, anger and might standing forth.

There is perhaps a way I can do it all, capture my dream and make it reality. With no-holds-bared relentlessness still manage to capture the hearts of writers, whilst inspiring, being looked upon in awe and commanding fleets of more than willing personnel. Now, the concept is ludicrous, the paradigm through which it can happen is beyond idiocy, but with a little bit of perseverance, some sound knowledge and learning, and a few years behind me, I think I can crack it, ladies and gentlemen, within Web2.0.

The fucking internet, it’s bigger than the biggest thing on the planet. Celebrity bloggers, vloggers, podcasters and general morons are quickly becoming a new breed of hero. Our western world is being assimilated one by one, the east is no better, constantly connected, in touch, if you’re not online you’re out of the loop pal, take notice of what’s going on if you don’t you’ll dry up and die, just like the rest of them.

The bloggers, the social-media, the social-sphere, it’s developing and I can only hope that it’s here to stay. Birthing from people’s insatiable lust for gossip and trash, it has, with the help of some people who have always been around but have how just decided to start embracing this side of the wonderful medium, become a tool for good. ‘You fucking geek,’ my friend cried, then I put together a short tale, it was called, ‘The prick who shrivled up and died’ it went something like this.

“There once was a boy who enjoyed his whiskey, he enjoyed it so much he’d go to the pub every night and get entirely wasted on whatever the landlord had to offer. Each night after ‘getting wasted’ and ‘being a deviant’ and ‘being a fucking hedonist’ he’d go back home, perhaps smoke some marijuana and fall asleep.

His friend then once told him about the new social-media and how he thought some form of revolution was taking place. ‘Bullshit’ answered the boy and carried on about his ways. His friend then went about setting up a blog concerning whiskey, he started social networking throughout the internet with other ike minded people and soon gained a reputation. After perhaps a year he had gained quite a bit of notoriety and was receiving many millions of visitors a day. He began a quest against his old friends favourite type of whiskey and soon the recipe was changed. Then he went up to the boy and told him to go fuck himself.

The boy was stood on the outside looking in, but his friend was in the loop, he’d embraced what was happening and took a piece for himself.”
Errr, Me, right now.

The point is ladies and gentlemen, that although there has been many social revolutions though-out history, there is now one happening right in the middle of the communications age. People have the ability to connect where-ever, when-ever they want on multiple plains across numerous platforms and if you are willing to embrace this, open your eyes to a movement that will continue to mushroom in a way that was never or could never have been seen with the likes of the hippies and the punks, then you’re in for a good time.

Now, we’re drifting slightly, the dream is the concern and it’s my dream… to be the jilted artist, to be the power hungry hedonist and to be the commanding warrior. Some may think it’s a copout, doing it from behind a screen, sat down, occasionally drifting off to examine my Phrenology skull or to eat some toast, and I’d agree in many respects, but it’s the best I’ve got at the moment, and it’s how I believe technology will ultimately bring me my dream.

Combing perseverance, the ethereal like social-media, my net connection whether by HSDPA, 3G, broadband or anything else, my 64x2 Turion AMD fully kitted laptop or my Core 2 Extreme X6800 desktop, my mobile multimedia computer or internet tablet and winning. Pricking at the shrouded light that is my dream, until finally there’s no material left to prick.