The Three-City Problem of Modern Life — interesting read and social commentary about the lives we live today. We either live in the city of reason, of faith, or of technology. Living in one city isolates us from the rest of the world and that makes us feel incomplete.
^ This is probably only applicable to US readers, as a ROTH IRA is a specific tax-advantaged account offered by the government. But if your country has a similar offering, then some of the info might still be useful.
On Social Media
Social media is like a sandbox where you can observe mimetic theory and mimetic desires in full display.
One good tip that was shared in that post is that a personal website/blog is the perfect place for you to experiment with your own ideas. Not everything will work out of course, but keep trying and some will.
This also tells me that if your personal website won't allow you to do that, then you probably have a professional website as opposed to a personal one.
We can't go on a walk, or a run, or a bike ride without sharing photos that we did so. We can't read a book without sharing a photo of the book we are reading. We can't drink a latte without first sharing a photo of it. We can't eat without sharing a photo of the food we are eating. We I can't listen to music without sharing what song we're I'm listening to. We can't live our lives without documenting a part of it — if not all of it — online.
Why? Why are we doing all this? Why do we feel the need to do all this? Does anybody else think that's not normal? I've been asking myself those questions for months now.
There's lots of advice on what to do to take control of your data online. For instance, you should have all your blog posts and photos under your domain name, so you keep control of them. And if you're not concerned about that, there's lots of advice on what platform is the best for photo-blogging, long-form blogging, micro-blogging, etc... There's all sorts of advice regarding the best ways to manage your data online. But no one seems to be asking the question, why?
I would like to apologize in advance. I tried to edit this post to make it as coherent as possible, but it still feels like a mess. Welcome to what my brain and life was like last week.
I ran into an issue while working on the previous weeknotes post. My weeknotes post show up on this journal, but it has software dev related posts. That makes me think that those should be on my dev blog. And now I wonder, maybe I should have just one website in the first place.
Now the problem with having one website that houses all kinds of content, is that my personal posts would start showing up alongside my dev related posts. I remember Scott Hanselman said that you should keep overtly personal information out of your tech blog. That's pretty much why I have a dev blog and a separate personal blog/journal. I also think that the advice on separating them still makes sense. But I also feel, based on experience, that having to maintain multiple websites can be exhausting.
After pouring out my heart and soul, my personal life into this online journal, I now have this urge to move on and leave it all behind. I no longer want to post something overly personal.
Had I decided to remain with an anonymous journal like Inquiry suggested in the past, I probably wouldn't have a problem with all the personal posts I wrote. But I really wanted to “own my words”, so this is what I get for doing so LOL.
On a related note... I wish I could start over with my domain and websites. Or, just leave everything behind and start fresh on a new blog/site.
I wonder if I can use Write.as as a headless CMS? Basically the idea is, Write.as will host my content, while I consume the content using an ASP.NET Core powered website. That will give me more control of the site's design, code, etc... while keeping the content safely stored in Write.as.
I already have a .NET wrapper library that can query their service for my posts. It might be a fun project to try in the future.
Struggling so much with the “ASP.NET Core 3 and React” book. I am simply following the instructions in the book, but I keep running into compile errors. The compile errors are brought about by the use of other libraries to help with development. I've had to spend more time troubleshooting the errors than actually reading the book.
At the end of another frustrating night trying to troubleshoot the errors, I realized the crux of the problem. The reason I was running into so many errors, is that the latest version of the libraries I was using, was not compatible with each other.
Trying out something new here. I'm so far behind on my journal entries, there's no hope of catching up soon. So, I'm going to give weeknotes a try. The idea is to list what I've been up to this past week or so. What makes this easier for me is that these notes have already been typed into Obsidian. All I have to do is copy paste them into a post. And so before exhaustion kicks in, I'm going to get started...
Working with Obsidian and building a personal knowledge base has me on a high. I've been writing so much today (this week), it's crazy. And all this writing was done offline. If that isn't “writing for myself”, I don't know what is. I may be getting tired of writing blog posts, but apparently, I'm not tired of writing.
This leads me to thinking that this might be a better way to pass down my journal entries to my kids. Plain text files should hopefully outlive me. I don't have to do it through an online journal or a blog. I can just pass off my collection of text files to them.
It's interesting that, I am using a blog/journal, to post on social media to let my friends know I'm still alive. The problem is that the feed on social media runs on an algorithm. That means, my post might never even show up for my friends before they stop scrolling. Which means, what I'm using social media for, is actually not working for me.
Cal in his post, shares a wonderful essay about a professional sport climber who ditched social media and improved her career. Both posts, from Cal and Madison are really good reads. Be sure to check out the comments too, especially on Cal's post.
It was then that Madison’s athletic career moved to the next level. “There’s nobody I’m here to perform for,” she writes. “I just train and silently work on achieving my own definition of success.”
That quote above made me reconsider keeping my blog “public”. By that I mean having my posts show up on the read.write.as feed. I sometimes feel that I'm performing for someone when my posts show up on the read.write.as feed. Like I'm in a competition, trying to keep up with everyone else.
The promise of Facebook was to create a more open and connected world. But from the company’s failure to protect millions of users’ data, to the proliferation of “fake news” and disinformation, mounting crises have raised the question: Is Facebook more harmful than helpful? This major, two-night event investigates a series of warnings to Facebook as the company grew from Mark Zuckerberg’s Harvard dorm room to a global empire. With dozens of original interviews and rare footage, The Facebook Dilemma examines the powerful social media platform’s impact on privacy and democracy in the U.S. and around the world.
Overall, it was a pretty good documentary. They weren't lying about the original interviews and rare footage. It reveals insights into company culture — why Facebook is the way it is now and how they got there.
Yesterday I talked about why I created a new Facebook account. Today I'm listing down some guidelines for myself, concerning the use of my new Facebook account. My main goal here is to be able to manage a Facebook account while still minimizing distractions and keeping my attention intact. I didn't go through my #DigitalMinimalism journey just to throw everything away with a new Facebook account. I'm incorporating lessons I've learned from my year away from Facebook. So here goes.
There were two major events recently that made me reconsider creating a new Facebook account. First is watching the PBS Frontline documentary, The Facebook Dilemma. While it didn't change my views on the dangers of Facebook and social media, at the end of Part Two of that documentary, there is this striking quote from Zeynep Tufekci:
They're not going to do this as long as they're doing so well financially and there's no regulatory oversight. And consumer backlash doesn't really work because I can't leave Facebook, all my friends and family around the world are there. You might not like the company. You might not like its privacy policies. You might not like the way its algorithm works. You might not like its business model. But what are you going to do?
I feel trapped in the same way. All my family and friends are on Facebook. None of them maintain personal websites or blogs like I do. It's not that FOMO got to me, but more of the fact that they can't seem to reach me after I've deactivated my Facebook account. It doesn't help that all my really close friends, my “barkada” as we call it in my native tongue, they all live in a different continent than me. So, I don't have the luxury of hanging out with them on weekends to maintain our friendship. Had I had that option, I'm positive I could have gone on without a Facebook account.