Tiger Woods Press Conference Takeaways

Tiger Woods spoke in a press conference just now. Here’s what I got out of it:

Tiger looks good. It doesn’t look like he went through plastic surgery.

According to the written speech, he’s deeply sorry for his selfish and irresponsible behavior.

He’s not as good at reading as he is at golf.

He did better than Chris Brown did, at least.

He sounds rather robotic, like “YABBA. DABBA. DOO”.

Tiger Woods does a lot for the children of the world, and he’s dedicated to making sure that continues.

He’s reading off of a paper to express that he didn’t get jacked up by his wife, Elin.

Tiger was taught to believe in core values, but he convinced himself that normal rules didn’t apply. He never thought about who he was hurting. He thought only about himself. He thought he could get away with anything he wanted to. Continue reading “Tiger Woods Press Conference Takeaways”

Young, Sexy & Dangerous

According to police reports, someone who shall remain nameless in this post was shot to death by his 20-year-old girlfriend recently.

Since people have been waiting for this to happen to ME for a quarter-century already, I thought I’d throw in my two cents on the situation in general.

I have no opinion on the situation in PARTICULAR, because I didn’t know either person involved and I wasn’t there, so I have no idea what went on. Besides that, one particular incident isn’t as important as the overall problem…. That problem being…..

Young Chicks Are Dangerous… BELEEDAT!!! πŸ˜€ Continue reading “Young, Sexy & Dangerous”

Communication [Part 2]

Continued from Communication [Part 1]

So now we get to the point where people have this expectation of entitlement to intrusion. This is one of the reasons why I wrote “Digital Internet Snobbery”. I was getting flak from someone because I am not available by text. This was after I SPECIFICALLY TOLD HER how she could get in touch with me, which was via email… which she can do from her phone if she can text from her phone, so I didn’t see what the problem was. Unfortunately, she had been hoping I was going to live into someone else’s style, and it ain’t that type o’ party. πŸ˜€

I missed the text revolution because I went directly to AIM. The reason I haven’t updated my ancient phone up until now is that I’m available via lots of services which are more efficient for my style of interaction. As a matter of fact, my contact information’s listed in the sidebar to this very post. If you can’t figure out from there how to contact me, I’m still currently the #3 “Bill” on google, behind Gates & Clinton.

I know too many people to be randomly available via phone. I’d never get anything done. Most of what I do requires A LOT of mental processing, as you can tell by these epic posts I keep dropping. I can’t ‘afford’ to get continually taken out of the zone to have random conversations whenever someone feels like contacting me. This is why I herd people towards email or iChat so I can get back to your message when I get back to it. This is why it was so funny to be told that I need to get with the program when it comes to texting, because I’m so far beyond texting. However… Whose problem IS that? πŸ™‚ Is that MY problem, or is that HER problem? Actually, it’s the problem of the person that loses the most if we’re out of contact, which isn’t ME, so that answers that. πŸ™‚

So we got up to text, and like I said, I missed out on the revolution because I was already on AIM (which became iChat when I ditched PCs hahaha, but that’s another story πŸ˜€ ). At this point, instant messaging services are the final frontier, because you can perfectly craft your socialization experience. You inform people via status update whether you’re online or not, and if so, whether you’re likely to respond to a message they send or not. You can inform them if you’re working or AFK (away from keyboard) or fully welcoming conversation. You can turn sound on or off so if you need to concentrate on writing another epic post, you can still receive messages that don’t break your state. You can have an icon bounce in your tray in case you get a message while you’re AFK and your iChat windows are all hidden. This way, you know to check your new messages. You can start or accept audio conversations or video conversations.

Bill using iChat video
Photo Credit: Rob Boudon

Most importantly, you can carry on several completely different conversations at a time, which you can’t do via audio on a phone. This means that if the person you’re talking to is a slow communicator, it doesn’t matter. They’re not hogging your bandwidth, and you’re talking to six other people while you’re waiting for them to send you something back. It also means that if someone’s a flooder, you can minimize their window and respond to them when you feel like reading the novel they wrote. If people are annoying, you block them so you can go about your day without being disturbed. If you want to find out what’s going on tonight, you can message people in different cliques at the same time and you get back what you get back.

However… If you depend on instant messaging services, you’re at a distinct disadvantage when you go out….

I went over to Ryan’s the other day… specifically NOT pictured here on the right…

And hadn’t bothered to put his cell number in my phone, because I didn’t imagine the party would be in the garden out back and not inside his actual apartment, haha so between that fact and the fact that I hadn’t bothered to charge my phone’s battery, I took a short in that situation, haha πŸ™‚ If I had had a modern phone, I could have emailed him or checked my own email for his number or used any number of services to attempt to bypass the physical barrier of being stuck outside a door, buzzing a buzzer that nobody could hear. πŸ™‚ The same thing happened to me going to Justin’s party…

Bill , Marissa & Justin

… but luckily, Amir had to go to the bathroom, so someone was in the apartment to hear me buzzing, haha. πŸ™‚

The point here is that obviously, communication is returning to the pocket from the computer, except in the form of text and visual information instead of voice. Google Maps, GPS, everything’s going back into people’s pockets, specifically at this point in the form of Blackberry devices and iPhones. This is why the iPhone SDK is such a big deal. You get to create something that people all over the world might buy, because you get to place it in the Apple Store, online.

The next big deal is going to be hand-held video chat, so we’ll see if Apple stops ****ing around and releases an iPhone with the camera in the proper location for people to video chat before someone beats them to the punch and Apple gets the fail whale for once! πŸ˜€

Bill Fail Whale

Do you miss potential job and socialization opportunities by not being randomly accessible or checking voicemail? Yes. Definitely. What you receive in return is increased efficiency and focus. By minimizing my distractions, I probably got this post done in 1/2 the time it would have taken otherwise.

Speaking of the dreaded, yet oft-appearing “Fail Whale”… Twitter has found a new way to not crash so often. That’s to implement Denial of Service when it comes to our @ messages. For people unfamiliar with Twitter, you can send a message to someone’s “replies” folder by using the “@” sign with their username, like “Hey @username, what’s going on tonight?”. If you use the website, like I do, instead of using a standalone client, you find out who sent public messages to your attention or mentioned you in your “replies” folder. Without that folder, all you have is the ten latest pages of Twitter posts from the 800+ people that you follow that you can search through if you feel like it and have time to waste, or you can use search sites like TweetScan and Summize, but you’d better hope THEY were able to pull the entries from Twitter themselves.

So that’s where we stand right now. We live in a world where people expect immediate attention and there are lots of ways for them to get that. Are they entitled to it? No. It’s just that “everybody’s doing it”, so you seem to them to be “odd man out” because your phone has a little alien on it that jumps rope, eats apples, skateboards and takes baths when you open the phone up. πŸ˜€ Meanwhile, the fact of the matter is that I went out for a reason… to hang out with specific people or do specific things. IF having my email on me, and my calendar, and my answering machine, and my instant messaging, and my audio software, and my internet browser, and my quicktime player, and my video compression software was important to me, I would have brought my computer and my EV-DO card with me.

The funny thing is, πŸ™‚ when I finally buy an iPhone, or whatever great all-in-one gadget someone comes out with, that’ll only increase my options for technological offense….

Psychologically, I’m not going to be any more accessible than I am today. πŸ˜€

Communication [Part 1]

I’ve been meaning to write this for a long, long, long, long, long time. Probably over a year. I touched on it a little with “Digital Internet Snobbery” and “Are You A Tech Elitist?”, but I need to go back to the beginning.

Before all this social media stuff jumped off, people had land lines and answering machines. Actually, forget the answering machines. People had land lines. If they weren’t at home… Guess what? You Couldn’t Talk To Them. Period. That’s it. No way around it. The only way around it was if they went to a pay phone and called you from the street. But basically, if you weren’t NEAR YOUR PHONE, you were completely out of contact unless you were in physical proximity to people.

Next, we got answering machines, so now, if we’re not at home, when we DO get home, we know who called us and what for. We also got Caller ID so that we could tell who called us and didn’t leave a message. Still, no contact other than when we’re in our houses where our phones and answering machines are.

Next, we got pagers, so that when we were in the street and people wanted to speak to us, they could send us their number so we could go to a pay phone and call them back. This was probably the beginning of intrusion & entitlement. This was where people started making big deals out of the fact that they paged you and you didn’t call them back. Before this time, there was no guarantee that whatever device people tried to contact you on was attached to your person. You could be at home and ignoring them, and they’d have no clue with phones and answering machines. The reason people got pagers was either because they wanted people to be able to contact them on the run OR they had to have it for business. In either case, it was assumed by people that you had this device with you and didn’t leave it at home, so the “burden” switched from the callER to the callEE as far as whose fault it was that a conversation didn’t occur when the caller wanted it to.

The typical excuses for not returning a page were a) I was in the subway and didn’t get it [since pagers wouldn’t hold the message for you and try again when you came above ground], b) my service sucks, and I didn’t get the page [when you got the page and erased it from your memory list in case the caller *COUGHyourgirlfriendCOUGH* checked it], or you got it and didn’t have change on you to call her back or none of the pay phones where you were worked [which was valid because a lot of the phones were broken in NYC for some reason, mostly people doing scams to try to get the change out of the machines]. Still… the ‘problem’ here was that the callEE had to give excuses to the callER, when the fact of the matter is that they didn’t feel like talking to you and ignored your page (or, ACTUALLY didn’t get the page. πŸ™‚ ).

Next up was cell phones. Same problem with intrusion & entitlement. The fact that you had a cell phone with an answering system meant that you were assumed to understand that the caller called soon afterwards, therefore receiving the burden of calling them back. This was especially true if they called you several times in one day. Also, the subway excuse disappeared, because cell phones will repeat sending you the alert that you have messages when you come above ground. To make matters worse, cell phones ring differently if you have them online when you get a call and when you’re not attached to the satellite system. If it rings 4 times and goes to machine instead of going directly there, it’s assumed that you saw the call and ignored it (or perhaps weren’t around your phone). Either way, it’s assumed that the phone is active and has batteries in it, so, again, the burden’s on the callEE to pick up the conversation where the caller left it.

Next was cell phones with the ability to send text messages. This completely flipped the script. Completely.

I didn’t catch on to the importance of this for a long time. I finally got it when I would try to contact my friend Masami to go out…

Masami Snow NYC

I would call her and get no response. 45 minutes later, I’d text her and get a text right back. I thought this was odd, because both the call and text go to the same device… except depending on how you SET the device, it notifies you differently about different events. Let’s say the notification for text messages had higher priority on her phone than the notification for voicemail. When I was calling her, it basically dropped into an abyss. When I sent her text messages, they went right to the top of the list and she became immediately aware of them.

A part of the reason for this was that A LOT OF PEOPLE had switched over to using text instead of voice. By the time I was in contact with Masami, she was very used to interacting with people via text from her phone. I was probably the only one leaving voice messages. πŸ™‚ I found out another reason for the changeover by watching television. These guys were sitting at a table with these chicks on some reality show and texting to each other about the chicks. Before seeing this, I hadn’t considered that people use text to communicate in stealth mode, when they can’t actually talk. If someone’s in a business meeting and you call them, it’s going to go to their machine. If you text them, they’re likely to check it and even text you back while the meeting’s still going on. So the fact that you didn’t have to LOOK LIKE you aren’t paying attention to whomever’s speaking was an important factor in people switching to text.

Another good reason to use text is the sound factor. There are a lot of places where people might be in Manhattan where you just can’t hear what’s going on… but you can READ it. This happened to me a while back when I tried to call Dave, and he couldn’t hear a thing I was saying…

The only way I caught up with him was to have a friend of mine do me the solid of texting him for me to ask him where he was hanging out. So once again, text defeats voice. Text is better when you can’t talk. Text is better when you can’t hear. Text is better when you need to look like you’re paying attention to someone you’re standing/sitting in front of.

Text is also better because it’s asynchronous. Technically, so is leaving a voice message, but you can text someone back under just about any conditions, including being in the subway, having already received your messages to your phone. You can reply to a bunch of messages and have them sent out when you get signal. You wouldn’t even be able to RECEIVE your voice messages underground in order to reply to them.

This is where I got to the point of “Digital Internet Snobbery”, which I’ll address in “Communication [Part 2]”.