Reading All The Light We Cannot See in a perfectly-background-voluumed after-hours cafe in downtown Vancouver. The noise of students, workers, the homeless drinking tea and conversation envelopes like a warm hammock, the air-conditioning over-enthusiastic against the oppressively still night. In the book, I read about radios.
How miraculous it must have been, to tune a radio. You could be anywhere, lonely, and with a cheap speaker and some wire and magnets tap into an invisible vein flowing through the air vibrating with music and debate. Cascading transports of magnets and electricity encoding packets of human voice encoding intelligence, companionship, ideas, opinions, thought. Science and engineering coalescing and enabling art and culture to democratize knowledge.
And then we invented the Internet. And broke the user experience of simply tuning in. Invented Chromebooks to bring the simplicity back and then decided to use that to track children.
The Internet is the ultimate achievement in the pursuit of humankind’s dream to connect us all and we decided to hand the keys over to a tiny peninsula in Northern California.
Don’t even @ me.