Other Ten Percent 5/5/14

May 05 2014

I hate it when I have like, half of a thing, and then I don’t have the energy to make it an entire thing thing so I just sort of search around all day trying to find something that starts a little more finished for the rest of the day. I hate it for all the regular reasons along with the “pretty apt metaphor for life there dude” reasons and I hate it because the end result for OTP is another long entry where I ponder what the hell I’m doing and what the future of this thing is going to be and then pretend like people want to read that. So, anyway, buckle the fuck up because here that goes again.
I feel like I paradoxically need to disconnect from the internet more to write OTP these days. The method where I just compressed the web down for you guys ran out of road a while back and I’ve been trying a lot of really original methods of not looking down. For a while I thought that doing pattern recognition and relating ideas to other ideas was enough of an added value to make OTP worth it but these days even those connections seem to have run out of steam.
I rarely see something where even the second order implications of it aren’t something I’ve talked about before these days. Certainly I don’t see five of them every week with enough content to be worth discussing. Plus half the time when I DO find something like that 2 or 3 of you guys e-mail it to me or post it on Twitter or Facebook before I can write it up and I think “oh, no need for that then.”
Obviously part of this is burnout. You can’t sift through “the future” forever without just getting kinda jaded about the whole exercise. We tend to get the most boring versions of our imagined futures. The 2014 where everybody knows about 3D printing and augmented reality hasn’t really led to a world where there’s a lot of exciting new content in either of those fields there’s just A LOT OF IT. The whole world feels kinda like 2009 with a lot more Vice articles about that shit. Everything’s amazing and nobody’s happy as our most jaded cultural critic Louis C.K. says. (Watch Louie on FX TONIGHT 10/9C!)
But I also think I’ve simply run out of the number of things I can build at this scale with this particular raw material. I tried just making OTP into a 2000 word project every day or scaling it up into a video project on a daily basis to make it feel different but that kind of output just isn’t sustainable without making OTP my job and oh man you guys would hate this thing so much if I made it my job.
So I think I need to be figuring out a new raw material to be working with and I think I need to find that material by spending a lot LESS time online. Constantly shifting the makeup of my RSS reader doesn’t really shake the basic relationship between internet culture and my particular preoccupations no matter what specific blogs I’m following. So I either need new preoccupations or a new culture I’m mining for this. I genuinely have no idea which of those changes will be easier to achieve I just know neither one seems all that likely just updating my feedly all the time.
I’m not suggesting I’m going to totally disconnect from the web or anything. That’s for people who want to corner you at a party and lecture you about the DANGERS of the internet. If anybody needs me I’ll still be available by e-mail and twitter, and Facebook and probably AIM at least occasionally. I’m not saying I’m never going to have commentary on stuff from the web anymore either. I still see stuff from time to time that is worthy of the full OTP treatment just not enough to keep using OTP as an exercise that keeps me writing everyday which is mainly why I value it at this point.
Mostly I just feel like I need to start having the raw material I’m working with here come less from disposable blog posts if I want my output to stop looking so damn much like a disposable blog post every day.

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