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Adding, not echoing

In a lot of ways I'm still getting over spending time in the hospital with my mother. I'm very tired, and concentration comes in fits and starts. I'm certain that I'll remember how she looked when we walked into the recovery room right after her operation, when they weren't sure if she was going to make it, until the day I die. It was a stressful, hard time.

Through this lens, Twitter now feels like opening a box of the ghosts of dead salesman; disembodied heads screeching at the void in order to promote their personal brands. On a day like today, when Boris Johnson has just become Prime Minister and Robert Mueller is testifying before Congress, it's particularly intolerable. Yes, I care about these things, but existentially, I'm tired. All of human experience isn't limited to these conversations. There's so much more.

In some ways, the same goes for technology. My love of tech has always been deeply tied to my love of people. Technology isn't interesting for technology's sake: it's interesting because it elevates the human experiences and lets people do things they couldn't do before. It has the potential to make the world more educated, more inclusive, and more peaceful. It's certainly not interesting because it makes money for people. Building wealth is the emptiest of empty goals, particularly in comparison to building happiness or building community. Every technology project I've ever professionally worked on has been mission-driven for exactly this reason. There are ethics to what I do that I think are important, but there's a limit to the number of times I can talk about building software respectfully or limiting centralization of corporate power.

For the time being, I don't really have anything to add. And I think it's important to be additive, rather than just echo the prevailing conversations. So for a month or so, I'm going to take a hard left turn.

During August, instead of talking about tech or the things that are happening in my life, my site and social media accounts (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram) are going to be entirely driven by creative output. No links to news stories, no links to blog posts on software architecture, politics, etc etc. If I'm making something public, it's because I've written a short story or made new art.

There are two exceptions: I will write as part of my work at Unlock, and I will publish my monthly "here are the books I read" round-up. The rest will be creative.

This isn't what anyone is following me for, I realize, but I consider this recovery time. It's necessary for me to use my brain a little differently, and to breathe. And maybe it'll lead to something new.