Around the Web
As much as I love my Android phone and think that Windows phone UI is pretty interesting I’m starting to wonder if the phone software ecosystems aren’t starting to get a bit stale. Especially with the iPhone 5 release it looks like we’re getting to the point where manufacturers only make small incremental updates to their systems instead of really improving. I’m hoping Firefox OS for mobile devices will shake things up in much the same way that Firefox did for the desktop
I love the Internet. I love being connected. I love being able to talk to my parents across the world for virtually nothing every day. I love being able to exchange snarky quips with friends I haven’t seen in years ( and writing that sentence made me feel really old). But I sometimes I can’t help wonder if it isn’t all getting just a bit out of hand. I’m not at the point where I’m willing to pay money to get disconnected (and I went without Internet for a week in the summer with no withdrawal symptoms). But I am starting to tone things down a bit, watching less TV, unsubscribing from RSS feeds and trying to spend some time each day reading good old dead tree books and just hearing myself think.
The flip side of consumption is creation. Part of the reason I want to tone down my connectivity is so that I can consume less and create more. George Orwell has a somewhat unusual take on the reasons behind creativity: it’s less Zen and passion and more a combination of ego, pride and simple pragmatism. It’s useful to realize that not all creative types are driven by some diving inspiration by way of a capricious muse. Some people just want to be heard.
The Internet is a great medium for sharing, even better than a soapbox in a park or a podium at a forum. Findings in an interesting service for sharing text either from your Kindle or from the Web. They also place emphasis on proper attribution. I don’t know how they plan on making money but it’s well put-designed and I hope they add support for sharing from other reading platforms like Instapaper and Readmill.