Tuesday, April 8, 2008


Random personal note.

One of my friends here, a certain Icelandic diva, likes to joke about how I am an information hoarder. I have way more tech stuff than I actually need/can use, and that goes especially for media. Books, music, bookmarks, podcasts, movies, etc - there is no way that I could finish it all. I could sit at my desk without sleeping for the rest of my life and never finish the contents of a single "hoarding" collection on one hard drive. I love the crazy as batshit stuff, too, probably because it is harder to find.

Every once in a blue moon I go through and try to eliminate total junk, which usually consists of asking myself, "If someone saw that I had that, would I be extremely embarrassed and completely lack any explanation?" Nothing nasty, but certainly socially unacceptable stuff occasionally finds its way to me. (For example, I love conspiracy theories for the sheer lunacy and fun of it, and the whole act of suspending disbelief stimulates me to look at things differently from even the most basic levels. But, growing up in a Jewish family (I'm 'socially/by blood Jewish, religiously atheistic') I don't feel comfortable with Nazi or controlling-the-banks-and-Hollywood type items. Not that I wouldn't get something out of reading them, but I feel like I shouldn't support it since the 'real believers' are a special kind of scary.)

I think part of it is that having all that information locally increases my sense of comfort, since any bit of information is sitting right in that little box two feet from my left hand.
Give me a sec here, and let me tally up how much storage I have... ~7TB of harddrive space and ~50GB of flash drive space. No, it's not all filled, but that's only because I have a certain level of standards and haven't downloaded a movie in ages (stopped that around 2004 - with the exception of documentaries/learning-related/can't be found on Netflix stuff).

I got started thinking about this because of two recent items.
1) 95% of 18-24 have pirated music. (obviously 5% are Amish)
2) A post on Reddit titled "Do you buy/download a lot of academic books meaning to read them "later", but really spend far more time getting the books than reading them?"

I think my mentality on the subject started when I was in high school and got introduced to the Hacker Manifesto during my early AOL haXoring days. It isn't a malicious thing, but more a curiosity. I prefer to think of myself an an information merchant.

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