Feb 1, 2009

Continuously Discrete

Another techy/geeky post, but this time it's Jeff's fault for posting about a "both/and" philosophy between digital and analog cultures. I don't feel too bad about stretching it out, because I don't think it's just a metaphor ...

One of the things he pointed out was the way we make digital copies of analog recordings, and the unavoidable(?) loss of presence involved. I remembered enough from my Data Communications Systems class to know some of the reason why. But some personal experience got me wondering about it some more. This time I can draw from a digital domain more familiar to everyone - Facebook.

In the last couple weeks, there's been an internet meme going around on Facebook for people to list 25 facts about themselves, and tag 25 other people to do the same. It's one of those chain-letter type things that I usually ignore, but I'm glad I did this one. Here's just a couple things some friends shared with me ...

  • I do want kids, but I'm waiting for that until I've accomplished what I want with my own life (since after kids, your life is no longer your own).

  • As much as I love all trinkets and nerd related toys (home theater stuff, games, computer gadgetry, guitars, cars) - I'd give any of it up for the most important things in my life... friends and family. Yes, I know, that's sappy. But hey, priorities.

  • I don’t trust well. I have been hurt enough to have nice, thick, unhealthy walls around my heart.

  • I'm happy to be working for a cause I believe in.

  • I am prouder of my daughters than they will ever know.

  • I use to have a pretty hefty addiction to internet pornography. It really started after I got married, which I thought was kinda odd. This went on for several yrs & did quite a # on my myself, my marriage, my spirituality, yeah pretty much every aspect of my life was affected.

  • I have had amazing luck my entire life with close friendships. Most all I would consider no less than family.

  • When it comes to more personal relationships I like to test my boundaries and exert my dominance by stomping them into the ground. :D BUT I do it all subconsciously.

  • I love to read anything, but I enjoy fiction/fantasy the most. I like ideas portrayed through a story much better than directly.

  • I'm atheist and NO I don't worship the devil. I don't believe in the devil and NO don't you ever try to "save" me.

  • My mom is extremely sick and has been for years and I keep it bottled up inside.

  • I'm constantly searching for friends.

  • I'm always living for the future and I hate that about myself. I want to learn to live for the moment.

  • I very rarely tell anyone what's wrong and chances are you'll never find out. I don't like asking for help and I prefer to bottle things up. I know it's not healthy.

  • I'll probably never tell you how much I love you/care about you/appreciate you, but I promise I do.

  • I have a plan for the next few years of my life, but I am starting to wonder and think that it's not really what I want.

  • I like the person I am slowly becoming.

  • I generally try to take the blame for many things.

  • It is unexplainable how grateful I am for my inspirational family, friends and boyfriend.

  • I once crashed my parent’s motorcycle and it is the most painful memory I ever had.

  • I am a bit impulsive and emotional at times, and really attached to my friends, which can be good and bad.

  • I'm also overly sensitive which is both a blessing and a curse. As a result I'm very kind to most but I'm also easily hurt. It can be quite annoying for everyone :-p

I'm including so many because 13 people tagged me - that means 325 such facts about my friends - and because it emphasizes the point. After reading thru so many, I developed a better appreciation of the presence we can find in the digital realm - a full presence; and just today I remembered a bit of the textbook knowledge behind it.
An analog signal is a "continuous" signal, while a digital signal is a "discrete" signal. To turn an analog signal into digital signal, a converter records periodic discrete samples from the continuous source signal. Now here's the textbook explanation:
The Nyquist–Shannon sampling theorem states that perfect reconstruction of a signal is possible when the sampling frequency is greater than twice the maximum frequency of the signal being sampled.

So the furthest branch of the analogy is, I think, a good way to find a real presence in the digital world - listen twice as much as others talk. I shared 25 facts about myself, listened to 325 facts about my friends, and feel like it will help me to better understand them. Come to think of it, it's probably a good way to get real presence in the analog world too. :)

1 comment:

Saint said...

It's interesting to me that I can actually recognize some of those from the different ones I read. Or from ones I didn't read, but of people I know.