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We're Done Testing Chatty For Now

I'm really grateful to the readers here for feedback on Chatty, and to the Chatty team for inviting us to the beta test.

Lots of good feedback. The biggest complaint users here had was that the Chatty box would pop up every time you navigated to another page. The second biggest was the lack of login options - Facebook connect was the only way.

That said, I really admire how the team at Chatty has gotten it up and running and how they're already contacting people who run sites and blogs. It's imperfect - they're in beta testing after all - but that attitude of get something workable out the door and into people's hands is great. Big admiration there.

Despite some user interface and login hassles, I think people would have really enjoyed Chatty if we'd gotten some good conversations going. That didn't happen - partially this could be a "luck of the draw" thing, where if two site users at the same time had gotten into an interesting conversation, other people would have jumped in.

Of course, you know I don't believe in luck! I installed Chatty without really a comprehensive plan for it. I said, "ah, screw it, let's just try it out" - and then not much happened. With a cohesive plan on my end, I think conversations could have really gotten going.

Living Well: My Facebook Diet

On Where Pianos Roam

Those of you who are connected to me on Facebook might have noticed that I haven't posted much on Facebook over the last couple of months.  To be honest, I've been very intentional about this.  My primary reason for avoiding FB has been to make time for other things (like my lovely little blog WPR), but there is another more subversive intention.

I am aware that every little thing I do on the internet can be tracked and monitered nowadays.  The resulting data can be used to figure out the kinds of things I will most likely spend my money on.  As far as FB goes, its seemingly innocuous interface doesn't fool me.  Behind its glistening simplicity is a massive algorithmic machine aimed at keeping my attention for hours and hours on end.  To top things off, everything that I "Like" is used to build some kind of digital imprint of who I am and what I favor. 

Sure, it's great to reconnect with old friends and classmates and even enjoyable to know what people are up to, but what price are we all paying to be able to do this?  One price, as I've already mentioned, is the loss of precious time that could be used more substantively.  In my case, I practice play my cello or work on music.  I take my Mom out to dinner or read a great book.    I engage in a real conversation with someone.  Imagine that.

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