I was give my own color TV when I got a Commodore 64 for Christmas in 1980-something. Ever since then, I’ve had a noisy backchannel in my life. I don’t just like a secondary channel, I often need it to be able to focus on the primary channel–it is just how I operate.
As I reach 20 years on the Internet I can’t help compare my current reality with my previous lives engaging with technology. I remember first getting my satellite access in I think 1982 or 1983. It was a big-ass-dish-out-in-the-yard setup, not the little-ass-dish-on-roof you have now.
Anyways, I’ve spent the last 30 years flipping through the channels of my television, ham radio, dial-up Internet, dsl, broadband, cellular connection. Which channel do I find what I’m looking for? Which frequency actually reaches me? What channel is the most relevant for the time period? There are a lot of questions, and only static answers—I demand dynamic. No real-time. No predictive. D) All The Above.
I monitor thousands of frequencies across about 10 channels, each day. I pay attention to RSS, Twitter, Github, Email, and other lesser traveled channels, looking for the signals that matter. The more I experience, the stronger the patterns I look for come into focus. Some things catch my eye, other things do not.
I’m difficult to reach, unless you know the channels. My daughter knows how to ping me on multiple channels, and various frequencies, and my mother does not. I try to manage the balance across the channels, and frequencies, but if I can’t find the right modulation—it ends up being random.
How will we ever find harmony in the channel in which we receive our information? How will we ever know the proper channels to reach those that matter? Our reality is physical, but our minds are moving digital, and we can’t keep up. How do we identify the right algorithm for flipping through the channels day, and maintain the sanity needed to keep a forward motion.