ramblings of joe / notes / 2024

Blogging is a bit like gardening

Sometimes I have thoughts along the lines of: “why am I blogging this if no one is reading it?” and on good mental days I’ll respond back1 with something to the effect of: “my writing is primarily for me, and if someone else sees it and appreciates it, that’s an added bonus of writing it down publicly.”

Today as I was contemplating a few different posts that are rolling around in my head, I had one of these thoughts pop into the foreground, stopping me in my tracks. As I was working through it, justifying the blogging process to myself once again, I decided that blogging is a bit like gardening2.

Tending to a garden is often a means to an end: you want to harvest the food you’re planting, or you want the plants and flowers to exist for the beauty they bring to the area. While those are valid reasons, gardening is also it’s own reward: you are carving out time and space to meditate and reflect, and over time it becomes a place that you made your own, the result of many different deliberate (and accidental) decisions.

If other people like the look of your garden, that’s great! However if you start ripping out plants that people don’t like, or adding in flowers that they said would look better, it would start to become a community garden, not your own. There’s nothing wrong with a community garden, and there’s nothing wrong with building consensus in a group, but there is also room in the world for your own space. Your own little corner of existence where you can pick, prune, and plant to your heart’s content.

That’s what blogging is to me. It’s a place where I can write my own thoughts, and revel in the process of editing, rewriting, and publishing my posts.

It’s my little garden on the Internet.

  1. Yes, I have conversations with myself, doesn’t everyone? ↩︎

  2. After I posted a link to this note on my Mastodon account, Kyle Hughes pointed out that I had stumbled upon the same terminology that many people have been using over the last few years, including this wonderful post by Maggie Appleton on her website. I have a lot more to think about now! ↩︎

Negative reviews of the Vision Pro are boring

Can I vent for a second? The Apple Vision Pro reviews are out, and this is the part of the review cycle I forgot I hated so much…

Is this the first augmented reality goggle or platform? No, far from it. Is it a fundamentally different approach to AR compared to other headsets? Only partially (due to the eye tracking + finger controls).

But almost every single review is reviewing this headset by pointing out all of the shortcomings:

Those takes are all incredibly uninteresting to me and super easy to make. Just like when Apple laminated the glass on the iPhone and it seemed like you were directly touching the screen, or when we went to “Retina” density displays, or ProMotion brought smoother scrolling, or OLED for better battery life and color accuracy… this device is a first generation product offering, and it will get better.

I totally understand that most reviewers are trying to answer the same question from consumers: “is this thing worth $Y of my hard earned money?”, and I’m totally ok with the answer to that question being a flat “no”, but it’s just depressing to me that the AR platform space gets a huge push forward by Apple and almost every single person who gets their hands on it is falling over themselves to be a negative ned.

Don't feed the trolls

There are people who’s “brand” is deliberately missing the point. Doesn’t matter what the issue, they’ll find a way to get it wrong. Rather than assume they’re unintelligent, it’s helpful to ask yourself why they might want to get something wrong in such a public venue… 🤔 (hint: social media interactions with “dumb” posts is always 10x higher than scientists or authors making well-reasoned points)

The truth since the beginning of the internet: don’t feed the trolls. 🫡

Tweets are now Notes

When I created this site, I decided I wanted to have some of my favorite tweets live alongside my blog posts. After all, Twitter started out as a microblogging platform, so my tweets were mini blog posts anyway. Then things changed, Twitter stopped being Twitter, and posting there didn’t feel the same. Then at some point they weren’t even technically tweets (Xeets?).

I still post tweet-like content on some platforms (mainly Mastodon), but I wanted a place to share something longer than a tweet/toot/thread, but shorter than a blog post.

Enter notes. Sitting right in the same feed as my posts and links1, I’ve relocated all of my old tweets to be notes, and will start posting short-ish content here on my own site. Sometimes it may be a repost of something I said elsewhere, but it will also be a place where I share exclusive notes, like this one I posted a little earlier as the inaugural native note on this site.

  1. Each content type also has it’s own feed, linked in the footer in order of [probable] length: notes, links, and posts↩︎

Life should be lived, not endured

We live life day by day, hour by hour, minute by minute, breath by breath. There’s no way to change that. Sometimes though, we wish away time, looking forward to the next thing: the weekend, the party, the trip. When we do that, we shift from living into enduring. The time still passes the same way, but it’s no longer valuable time to us. It is simply time that we need to get through in order to arrive at the moment we actually care about.

That’s a recipe for regret. Do that enough times and you’ll look back at weeks, months, and years spent wishing away the present for a future that simply came and went.

Back to the grind. Back to enduring. Back to waiting for time to pass.

Instead I’m trying to value every breath I take, living every moment with intention. In the moments I find myself wishing for a better future, I will come back to the present where I will find a life being lived.