Wednesday, June 16, 2004



I can be quite good in my line of work if I bother to spend a greater portion of my time focussing on the subject. But unfortunately I have too many diverse interests--way too many things vie for my attention, at times even threatening my sanity. So throughout my entire "career", I've been able to work out a formula where by spending just enough time, and acquiring just enough knowledge in my field, I can pass as a reasonably competent IT professional. I can then spend the rest of my time pursuing other more interesting subjects--those that I normally write about in my blog.

Fortunately (or unfortunately) IT is so full of hype; and most people in the industry get by by knowing the jargons. As long as you make an effort to go slightly deeper than that, you'll do reasonably alright. But all the irritating buzzwords and hollow hype gets to you after all while. Most of the time they are intended to make simple things sound complicated. You have to treat it like a game sometimes. If you can't beat them, join 'em.

We can't deny that the IT revolution has changed our lives tremendously. We cannot imagine a life without the Internet now. An Internet connection is becoming like an IV drip, and us, the information dehydrated patients. At the risk of sounding like a Luddite, sometimes I think we should sit back and rethink where we are heading. Are we getting our priorities right?

Perhaps a lot of the technology stuff out there is just snake oil. Even though I don't agree with many of the things that Clifford Stoll wrote in his book Silicon Snake Oil, I believe he does have a point. How much more "information" do we really need? How important is it for us to have to know instantly what is happening in some remote part of the world? What's wrong with reading about it in the morning papers tomorrow?

Do all that information we lap up so hungrily really make any difference? Do they translate to "knowledge"? What significant difference do they make to the quality of our lives? Perhaps it is just a natural consequence of our deep-rooted social instinct to "connect" with other people; so it doesn't really matter what kind of information we are getting, as long as we are getting a constant supply of it. And like food, the fresher they is, the better we like it. Is that why we enjoy reading other people's blog?

I have no answers to all these questions. I'm just tired. As long as I'm getting my daily information fix, I'm alright. And I consider having done my duty when I have deposited my daily excrement of junk info into cyberspace for the consumption of other poor souls like me. Like what IT geeks like to say, garbage in, garbage out. Happy reading and blogging!

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