Sunday, November 26, 2006

Too many choices

I've been a geek for most of my life. I cut my teeth on a Univac 1108, and played with a PDP/9 as my first micro-instruction computer. I was on AOL when it was still PC-Link and hit the Internet when you basically had to be at a University to get access. I've assemble computers from parts and even written a printer driver to allow an Atari to talk to a PC printer. I was on the web when only Swiss physicists and uber-geeks were and the browser of choice was Mosaic.
So its with some trepidation that I have to admit that the cyber-world has become too big, too diverse for me to keep up. I mean first there was email and newsreaders, then FTP, IRC, and the WWW. Now there's Instant Messenger, Online gaming and Second Life. Second Life?
I attended a conference for personal computer use in control systems. Most of the people there had been in the computer business for years; software, hardware, embedded systems, PLCs(programmable logic controllers), etc., etc., etc. After a week of talks on every conceivable aspect of process control using computers, by an international cast, we had a guest speaker who was to speak on the future of computing.
A guy came in. First thing he did was throw his Powerpoint on the big screen using his phone, like the guy in the MS commercial. He starts by saying, "Well I just attended a client conference in Second Life..."
Blank stares, even from the Americans in the audience. So he tells us how there is this whole virtual world, where people spend and make real money, meet people make friends, etc. Then a couple of days ago, while doing some research on the Mass for a lesson I'm writing I find this.
So I'm thinking, I'd really love to check this out. SL membership is free, but... who has the time?
I sold a single RPG article last month, and haven't started working on another yet. I've got a massive programing project due at work. There's still Christmas shopping to do, and I've promised my dear heart to floor the attic before Advent is over.
I don't have the time to learn another piece of software and explore a whole virtual world. Like the time sinkhole which is instant messenger, I'm going to have to forgo joining Second Life, probably for a couple more years of this life.

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