Thanksgiving & some Technical Thoughts of Gratitude

Let's all give it up for the Internet. While some things on it have scarred me for life, never has the human race been able to collaborate so profoundly with such speed.

Let's also give it up for the cell phone. When disaster calls, you can be sure that every cell tower will be jammed. Er, I mean, you will be able to call for help. Still, cell phones are changing the world.

Let's give it up for the Xbox - first, because it pays my paycheck right now, but also, because it allows people to get both their hardcore cuteness (those ridiculous whirling worms in Viva Pinata) and their hardcore rocket launcher fix (can you say, Bioshock? Or being Master Chief?). And because through XNA, it lets people make their own games without waiting on some studio or movie house to have the idea first. (or not, as the case may be).  Dream Build Play entrants, thank you. I remain so jazzed to see what folks came up with! (I even bought a Dishwasher t-shirt!)

I can't think about technology and thankfulness without thinking of everyone who has helped me when I was technically stuck - from Unix directories to shell scripts to Javascript rollovers to setting up redirects in IIS to writing a QnA gadget. It would take a reallly big computer lab to hold all of you. The graciousness of folks who post in the forums and newsgroups, who write blog posts about their workarounds, who take time to answer questions - you all are righteous and I appreciate the generosity that has allowed me to push forward into new tech.

And then also, there are the folks who push us to be more than technocrats, to be innovators, to lead. I recently read with dismay Mini-Microsoft's post that talks about Jon Pincus leaving the company. Jon was certainly unorthodox (those were the brightest pink jeans I've seen on anyone, male or female 🙂 ) but his Mashup Days changed people's sense of what was possible and I always left them with better energy and respect for what Microsoft employees can do. I know the Mashup concept was carried through the Women's conference, and some great code came out of it - so at least his efforts were not in vain. I think seeds will continue to sprout.

My main stake in technology has been the Web as a communicative, and community-building medium. I'm thankful that I get to continue seeing how it unfolds, thanks to all of you, out there.

Live it vivid!


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