Living Text

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Information co-creates the individual. Through it, one can life-edit, by giving one control over one’s information, one can edit one's own life. This is self directed life editing.


The first instance of living text occurred when humans began writing.


On Twitter, we are living text. On Flickr, narrative freeways in the shape of online photo albums--digital life streams. On Facebook, we are living a multiplicity of asynchronous micro-narratives that build upon each other, atom by atom, to generate larger narratives, patterns, and outcomes. We use different voices for different architectures,

In real time, we can make the choice of where we look -- and a choice of where to look.

Twitter is a way of curating the self and others. In the analog world, one cannot silence an annoying dinner party guest. On Twitter, one can press the “unfollow” button, effectively muting their existence. Additionally, the person at the head of the table cannot talk directly to someone at the other end. Online, everyone is next to each other. On Twitter, @’s replace physical addresses or attention-getting.

One presses buttons to receive and block various pieces of information, tuning in and tuning out others.

You'd have to have reason to tune people back in -- is if someone else was talking with that person -- but you wouldn't get that past. Or if someone were making crazy gestures.

What is a blog? What is Twitter? What is Flickr? They are a stream of easily updated text that represents an internal or external state or action. They can have hyperlinks and connect to other things, and other things can connect to them.

In Masuda’s Book The Information Society as Post-Industrial Society, information space -- the field provided within the new space, which is connected with the networks of information, characterized by two features:

  1. It does not have boundaries like a territorial field
  2. In this field, elements related by objective-oriented action are related to each other through information networks (Masuda, 161).

Like data attracts like data. Evidence of this can be seen through Flickr. Flickr’s ability to allow photos to be tagged connects and aggregates those photos together.

Although the reduction of time/space has brought the near to the far, and the far to the near, the amount of information accessible on the net is what keeps everything running into each other. Information is hierarchical, contained, and organized by those who use and create it. If what we find changes what we become, then we also change the nature of what we find (by voting, by page views, by advertising, by the introduction of new products/ideas).