I’ve been keeping a written/digital record of my existence since the age of six. I first began with a series of little notebooks, where my first comics and theories (mostly cool things I discovered about grammar (to, 2, two!) ).
But what I’ve found is that I can trace the evolution of ideas through my many notebooks and audio recordings. Ideas that felt big back then are now only constituents of larger ideas. They are like a Teddy Bear looks when one is grown up vs. the size it is to a child.
But theories are like old friends. New ones evolve and mutate so often that it is always nice to go back and see the familiar ones are doing. Daily journals are the same way. Recently, I’ve been digging through the last two years of my daily notes. The best way to do this is to turn off the Internet and dig deep into old files. The best thing is that my life is like what my 14 year old self wrote that my life would be like, but not as close as I predicted it would be like when I was 4 and filled with insomniac nights spent dreaming about time and space compression.
Here are some excerpts from the randomness that was swirling inside my mind in 2006. A lot are chunks from E-mails to others.
“We have such a long time to grow into adults because there is so much we need to know to be able to survive by ourselves in society. But other animals don’t have this freedom; they are locked into completely stratified ritual systems; so much so that what they do becomes instinct, like the bees in the hive. Where will we go in the future as a species? Will we become lazy and idiotic, repetitive and unceasingly exploitative, or will we become redundant to the point that ritual becomes instinct, or will we become something never seen before?”
“What happens when one comes up with the same things simultaneously? It’s as if people are growing islands. And these islands get tall enough to poke above the of the water. Above the surface of the water is when they realize something. And once they’re above, they can see each other out there across the ocean, and they’ve all come up with the same idea”.
The above chunk of text eventually evolved into the diagram below, which I’ve been evolving ever since.
Trend Adoption Graph
This graph was created at the Trend Prediction session I led at Cre8Camp. There will be a podcast of this session to go with the image soon.
A represents early adopters, and B general adopters, C represents late adopters, and D represents mass adoption of an idea or thing.
The top graph shows a sine wave of these points, with peaks and troughs corresponding to A and D respectively.
What I Did During My Lunch Break
Tuesday, May 27, 2008
Armed with coffee and a Mercury-laden Tunafish sandwich, I jammed out a auto-content software outline on MyMind (the best free mindmapping software for Mac) for “A search engine filter that automates Digg-like pages from RSS feeds.”
Time: 30 Minutes
Better than Monday’s software dev session. And I didn’t feel socially awkward at the end of it.
In Search of Large Primes
I had 6 computers at one point. I had them all crunching numbers for the Great Mersenne Prime Search. The odds of winning the $100,000 prize were one in 100,000, which was an awful lot better than the lottery. The only problem with factoring 10 million digit numbers was that it required an awful lot of time and energy.
I ended up factoring about 20 of them before moving away to college and donating the computers. The image above is from a series called Serial Experiments Lain.