in the garage

May 2, 2008

Lifted right from a chat I was having this evening… “we are collectively in the garage right now… exploring social connectivity across lines that have never before been able to be crossed in these ways and [perhaps we] are onto something new.” We started talking about Twitter. And that descriptor ‘microblogging’. It really does not fit with me. But what does? And I started to wonder if we can catch glimpses, but cannot yet see. Like we could not envision rocket flight when we had not yet invented cars…
why would we be able to see interconnectivity when we are so niche driven and fear segmented?

So I wonder… is Twitter part of the solution? Brevity. Synthesis. Connection. Could be the answer.

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3 Responses to “in the garage”

  1. Erin Wyman Says:

    In a world where all my friends complain, or at least indicate that they have little to no time to catch up with friends it seems that twitter and facebook or myspace would be the solution, I however just see it as yet another obstacle to maneuver around in my day. I much prefer the historic and romantic written word…but that’s just me.

  2. jennaream Says:

    HI Erin!

    I continue to struggle with that- what tools and methods of communication keeps me connected with people… and what gets in the way? How do I spend my time that is additive to my life and what is an energy and time drain? I struggle because I love my life and where I live, but it is hard to be so far away from family and all I knew and believed growing up. This raises the question for me: where and how can we live the lives we need to live… separate from one another, yet stay connected?

    My use of twitter and Facebook has changed significantly since I wrote this… but amazingly I find it equally true for me now. I used to call Facebook the application that I loved to hate… now it is the application that I hate to love… but I really do love it. I started to think about why that is… and have come to a metaphor that holds true to me at the moment. If we all lived in the same town… going about our lives as we do… we would occasionally bump into each other and know what each other is doing (Twitter, facebook posts). Then we would also make plans to get together and spend quality time (email, phone calls, letters). Do I care what you eat for lunch? Not really… but I care about you and if I bumped into you at an eating spot, I would likely notice what you are eating as one bit of information in the exchange. I might not even consciously register what it was (as I do not consciously pay attention to all details in an online stream) but I would have one more tiny bit of information about you, someone I care about. If it happened to be something notable, maybe my favorite thing to order at that restaurant, we might even have a conversation about it. Howard Rheingold got my attention when he referred to the idle chat of Twitter as a ‘social glue’. I think he and others that are discussing online community are really onto something in this way. It keeps those of us already in relationship connected, then it also provides bridges of common interest and conversation and promotes idea exchange and conversation.

    I have been thinking about what these tools provide for me in my life and in my life work. I find it is a balance of the opportunity to broadcast information to let people know a bit about myself, interact in asynchronous conversation over time, or chat in real time about something of mutual interest. Each of these ways give me a chance to explore ideas and stay connected with those who I know and already care about and others who I may not know well, but whose ideas and points of view help me expand and build on what I know and believe.

  3. jennaream Says:

    oh, and a link to one piece of Howard Rheingold’s work I find inspiring http://www.rheingold.com/vc/book/intro.html


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