#143: The Internet

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When I’m not busy doing other things, I like to browse the Internet pretty aimlessly, as a way of occupying my time and filling my attention a bit. The Internet is a source of inspiration as well as a way of getting people to be interested in new things. Sometimes, I aimlessly scroll through the same websites over and over again, not really realizing what I’m doing until after I’ve looked at the same page three times in a row without anything updating on it. If you’re the kind of person who does the same thing, you probably know what I’m talking about when I say that, when I’m bored, my brain seems to turn off a bit and leave its senses out the window. The rational part of my mind is gone and occupied elsewhere.

It’s said that when you are browsing the Internet instead of doing other, more productive things you are looking and searching for something to occupy your attention, as if everything around you currently is unable to keep you occupied and this is the one option left on the table. I don’t know if I agree with that theory totally, but I do like the idea. Sometimes I feel as if, when I’m mindlessly browsing the Internet, I’m only doing it because I’m bored and have nothing else to do. But is it true that I actually have nothing else to do? Probably not. There’s always something more productive I can be doing to occupy my time.

Most of the time, though, when I’m on the Internet I’m looking on Reddit or Twitter. Those are the two websites I seem to check most frequently. They keep my attention firmly in place, which is saying something, because my attention usually never feels stable.

The Internet is an interesting, perplexing thing.

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#61: The Wiki

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I had just finished reading a chapter in my witcher book, The Lash Wish, when I decided to do some research. One of the characters in the story, Calanthe, had some questionable actions in the chapter, and I wanted to look up this character further, maybe understand their backstory a bit better, hopefully lending the book a bit more of an emotional impact. But upon researching Calanthe’s Witcher Wiki page, I happened upon an unexpected, shocking realization involving the different characters and how they relate to one another. I won’t bother explaining the full story here, but essentially, one of the characters who was just introduced in the chapter was a character I had already met in the game version I am playing, but under a different name. This realization, borne from the Witcher Wiki’s thoroughness of research and spoiler-heavy contents, provided me with even more interest in this book, more than I already had for it, which is saying a lot. Though I was potentially spoiled on this key detail, I felt wholly invested in the new character’s story, thanks to the power of Wikis.

One of my favorite memories from childhood is playing Neopets online and in-person, as it connected all of us awkward fifth graders together in a small, but meaningful way. I remember learning about Neopets “lore” from the Neopets Wiki, and I remember learning about World of Warcraft lore through the WoWWiki. I learned about the origins of cards and planeswalkers in Magic: the Gathering thanks to their Wiki, and I’m able to keep up with Marvel movies primarily thanks to the writers of the Marvel Wiki. Needless to say, I love these encyclopedia pages, as they represent the great power and potential of the Internet, especially in a time when the Internet (and social media) are being used to deceive and infiltrate privacy. Wikis are a golden fruit among all the rotten garbage of the Internet.

The monkey picture has no real relation to this blog post, but I hope you enjoyed it.