UPDATE! See the end for added infuriating irony.
So here’s a nice little big of irony. I wanted to write a tiny blog post, something aphoristic about the choices that get made at crucial points in the development of a technology, after which it becomes seemingly impossible to get away from them. There are plenty of examples, of which one of the most interesting to me is “the file” in computing. (Read Jaron Lanier’s book, YOU ARE NOT A GADGET, for something on that.)
Another example: using fossil fuels. You get the idea. It’s called a “lock-in” and it’s interesting.
I was going to post something like: In the future, one of the greatest markets will be silence, simplicity and disconnection. You’ll pay more for a hotel room without internet access than for one with. A premium ebook device will be one that does not contain hyperlinks. Classes in concentration will be the most valuable (overcharged) seminars for productivity enthusiasts.
I don’t have my laptop on me, so I took out my iPhone and saw that my WordPress app “needed” to be updated. Which means: I hadn’t paid attention to the app in months. Foolishly, I updated it. And the app looked pretty different. There are NEW FEATURES. There’s an IMPROVED INTERFACE. My posts on this blog appear in an order I don’t understand; my login credentials didn’t work for 15 minutes. My phone’s autocorrect function has made this post difficult to write: “ebook” became “rebook”, “Jaron” became “Yeats” and “Lanier” was “learner” or something. I got a text while writing, which distracted me. Then the phone rang.
So I hope my dystopia comes true and I can really purchase my way out of this universe of distractions someday.
UPDATE: Upon hitting “post” on my WordPress app, I saw in my Twitter feed that it had been automatically shared on my Twitter account (I opted out of that at least one year ago) — and clicking through led me to this site, to a post that didn’t exist. Really. The app said the post had been published; the internet said otherwise. Logging in to my WordPress on a computer just now, it wasn’t even saved in drafts. Yet the WordPress app “published it” AND announced it through my Twitter feed. How beautiful all of this is. (Yes, I had to EMAIL THIS POST TO MYSELF FROM THE APP.)