Last night (well, early this morning), I discovered how one might be connected to two separate Skype accounts from the same Windows user on the same device at exactly the same time. I’m currently waiting for clever bods to confirm (if confirmation’s possible) that this is a robust technique – but if it is … my, does it provide a facility I’m sure people with both personal and biz accounts have, for quite some time now, had on their rather random software wish-lists.
If you want to know more, have a look at my Twitter timeline from this morning. In the meantime, I shall wait for any possible tests to be completed.
This kind of stuff, this random stumbling across felicitous discovery, is kind of what life – certainly my life – has periodically thrown up. It’s the good bit about life, this – that we can reach beyond our limitations and studies and, through some kind of curious unpredictable case of intuition, add far more value to our sum of knowledge than might be reasonably expected.
We are bigger and better and kinder and brighter than the number-crunching wizards of technological capitalism might allow.
As I tweeted just now:
If we live in a history of masses where individuals have levered disproportionate control, what *is* there to do except live where one can?
And as someone else sadly observed, as a society we are capable of staying up till 2 in the morning to queue up for a new-fangled piece of technology – but, at the same bloody awful time, we do not fight for social justice.
I’ve just, myself, committed the same unhappy infraction: following a train of information-technology thought throughout the early hours of Saturday morning in order to solve a fairly irrelevant issue I’ve long had with a piece of software I regularly work with.
Instead of, that is, going to this socialist demonstration or that – or doorstepping that family or this.
It’s a tragedy, what’s happened. Yes. History has become of the masses, as many a Marxian I suppose would suggest was inevitable. But a small and very focussed group of the selfish has learnt how to conduct the masses in one direction or another. We are not as complex as we would like to presume. Through a constant process of “message massage”, we have learnt our place in that mass is a hyper-individualised and localised one. Paradoxically, social networks do not socialise our environment but actually, massively, serve to individualise our every instinct and impulse.
Really, social networks should be redefined: they do not socialise at all. Rather, they are pieces of aggressively individualising software code designed specifically – quite consciously – to repeat and reproduce an atomising series of patterns of networked interactions. We do not interact to build sharing networks with these systems at all. Instead, we interact to build selfishness-engendering relationships where a contagion and infection of behaviours and beliefs takes place.
They don’t put us, in any way, in a social network to be social. They put us in a social network to become antisocial.
And whilst Marxian masses were once thought bringers (where not harbingers) of inevitable history, those who still stand atop these society-defining pyramids of (globally) inefficient command and control have worked out cleverly, perhaps unintentionally but certainly convincingly, how to make the masses in question work not for that history we might have hoped for (or not, as the case may be) – but rather for their pockets ever-deepening.
We are selfish beings without a jot of altruism. That is what we have become – or they have made us.
Or your video-conference, as the case may be.