Each missive starts with the awkward statement: I am still alive. Didn't disappear into the pandemic or my medical disaster or whatever other crises I navigated when my head was in a difficult place. And here I am and I am back and I am just coming off a day of online discussions, a popular videoconferencing software solution re-envisioning us as Brady Bunch heads alongside social chatter on a variety of different channels and devices, time-sliced through my past and present, a world of buzzes and chimes and lines left hanging. This is the future now, and the conversations never stop, that channel just pauses or you drift off, midsenten
Like a lot of people, I did a variety of things during the pandemic lockdown of 2020-21 to reduce social isolation, with variable levels of success:
- Joined local community messaging boards. This has lead to knowing some of the names of the friendlier local cats, along with more unexpected results like making banana bread for the first time;
- Chatted with contacts and colleagues via various work-based closed messaging services;
- Folded friends, acquaintances and family into various discrete technologically-enabled closed chat groups, with rich multimedia content; and
- Experimented with leaving a video chat channel open during work hours. That didn't last!
It's shoddy telepathy, but you never really wanted good telepathy. The mental channels are busy enough with your own thoughts. This is more like tide-washed debris caught in a filter; the detritus and flotsam of the noosphere, the dataspace, the information nation.