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Oh my, I have recently checked my Wordpress blog statistics and… Umm… Quite a lot of people who came here were searching for things like “12yo girls” or “12yo illegal”, which lead them to my post on RIAA suing a 12yo girl. Umm… Don’t know what to say really… I had no idea that so many people went on the internet searching for “12yo girls”, well knowing that what they want is “illegal” (popular word to include in the search engine terms).

I’m just going to tag this post with “illegal” and “girls” as I did with the other post (I will remove the “girls” tag from that old post I think) just in the hope that at least one of these people may realise that what they are doing is not at all going unnoticed.

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Apologies in advance for making this post so long, but this was an important part of my life that I did not just want to gloss over.

It looks to me like it has become a bigger issue over the past few years – there are TV campaigns asking depressed people to get help, psychiatrists around every corner, multi-billion dollar drug industries with hundreds of thousands of patients, etc. you know the story. Depression is not quite the same as “sadness” as sadness is a mood and depression is more of a prolonged state full of feelings of extreme sadness and hopelessness. A blogger by the name Violent Acres writes that most people are depressed because “their life sucks” – they want to get the meds, they want to be diagnosed because they just want to blame the physical function of their brain, but in reality their life is the problem. Well, while I understand that there are many people who have went through some traumatic experiences and are depressed as a result, I don’t believe it is very accurate to say that most people end up depressed because their life just “sucks”.

To tell you the truth, I’ve been there. I’ve been severely depressed for several very difficult months in my life – not enjoying a thing around me, not wanting to go on with life, even thinking of death. I came to a conclusion decided that I am depressed because my life just “sucks”. Nothing big happened, but everything was just… well bad – nothing was going for me in my life and I saw no way of fixing things.

So I stayed like that for a long time, eventually deciding that I probably have “clinical depression”, just as Violent Acres describes many people as falsely doing. Going through countless symptoms lists and online tests that told me to “GO SEE A DOCTOR IMMEDIATELY!!!”. I came to a conclusion that it was not my fault I was feeling that way, that it was just a mental illness. I have tried to talk to some friends about it – some did not want to hear it, most did not care (thinking I was exaggerating), others just didn’t really know what to do with that. This of course made my feeling of hopelessness only worse, but really it is not so obvious as how to react to someone who comes up to you and tells you that they have no hope in life. I was feeling too hopeless to go see a doctor, I did not think a doctor would help – I was picturing just lying in some weird chair and talking to an old man who keeps nodding his head, goes over painful memories of the past and maybe even gives you pills (I don’t like pills). (Please not that I am not at all saying that you should not see a doctor if you are depressed, I am just saying how I felt at that time about doctors).

Well. I am here today and I am perfectly alright. I was wrong – my life did not suck after all. I have met many other people who also are talking about being depressed – and you know what? Their lives don’t suck either! And no, I don’t agree that it is fair to say that these handful of cases are mental illness either. A mental illness is a disorder, it is something you need to have treatment for. I don’t believe it was a disorder (though of course there truly are people out there with actual mental disorders that cause their depression, but out of the many depressed people I have yet to meet a single one).

The problem was that I decided to play victim. “Oh things are so bad to me. I am a good person, I don’t deserve this. There is no hope, no one can help me.” Every day you say that to yourself you believe it more and more, and you start looking for evidence to support your claims – oh there is plenty around, no one’s life is perfect, and every single day things happen to you that are negative – so you just learn to focus on the negative. You get solid proof of how your life just “sucks”. And you just grow to accept that.

I guess it is not so far fetched to compare this state I was in to a trance that I just had to snap out of – to start taking action in my life, to start doing things again, and looking for solutions to my problems (and I really did have problems) rather than wallowing in self-pity all day every day. It is one of those things that sounds so simple when you say it but much harder to actually do when you are there. What personally snapped me out of it was meditation – when you learn to do it properly (and it does take some practise). Part of meditation is stopping your thoughts, you end up going into a quiet peaceful state, and when you come back to the real world it is hard to start feeling bad again so fast – these moments after meditation made me realise that I could indeed feel good still! That there was still hope and happiness in my life! My life did not suck, it was my perception and passive defeatist attitude to it that sucked! (Meditation is just what helped me personally snap out of it – this is not meant to act as therapy advice here.)

I cannot say that I have completely revolutionalised my life, but the little changes can go a long way. I cannot say that I have completely eliminated all sadness from my life, that I nothing bad ever happens to me, and that I have no bad weeks where I just feel very down and hopeless. Like Violent Acres says – sadness is natural, it is a part of life, you are inhuman if you do not feel it. There is nothing wrong with you if something bad is happening and you feel like there is no way out. But I do not let these things overwhelm me for eternity, I manage to find this hope and I do not let sadness turn into self-pity.

Everything I say about myself seems to be repeated by every single “depressed” person I meet, and I was later very excited to hear a psychiatrist saying the exact same thing! So what I am saying is: Violent Acres is wrong, while some people have had their life ruined through nasty events and there are people who really do have mental disorders, most depressed people are depressed because they just gave up and turned themselves into victims, deciding to declare that their lives suck instead of working to fix their issues.

A few things that I’ve been thinking about is – is blogging going to stay relevant for long? I mean internet access has been becoming cheaper and faster across the developed world which makes things like video blogging (such as on YouTube) and podcasting more readily available. Yet those are still lagging far behind and text blogging is much more predominant. My own reason for text blogging is that I can write what I want at a slower pace, having more time to think and re-edit everything, which is something you don’t get with video or voice blogging – you have to just… talk. I talk to people every day, with perfect quality video and audio that the internet cannot achieve, and there is no point for me to do so on the internet 😀

So yes, I haven’t blogged in a loooong while. In fact this blog has been sort of abandoned – I think I will get back into blogging and change that 😀 I’ve had a more active blog a few months before this one, but I closed it down due to some privacy concerns (which are no longer relevant, but oh well). There I was writing more on my own life with the hope of keeping up with some friends. But it turns out that most of them are technologically retarded (as I call it 😉 ) and do not understand words such as “RSS”.  One friend who even had his own blog was shocked in horror when the day after he made a post I mentioned it to him in person – he could not understand how after weeks of inactivity I could know about him making a blog post.  So even my friends who are bloggers don’t know about the wonders of RSS!!!  The horror!

But blogging is a very strange phenomenon.  While I was writing blogs for the limited target audience that was not reading them, I was getting hundreds of hits per blog from total strangers!!! That’s amazing and I don’t quite understand why.

Anyway, so I’ve given up on picking an audience and I will just rant about what I feel like :mrgreen:

I have spotted something interesting happening on YouTube – there is a sort of an activist movement to get out of Iraq, and 5 days on it is becoming quite big in the world of YouTube.  It was started by a single video blog requesting viewers to post video responses saying “get out of Iraq”.  And so they did, currently there are 168 video responses to the original video, almost all supporting his message, and if you watch some of the responses there are responses to responses also  (not to mention the tens of thousands of supporting text comments).  And a lot of these videos are getting quite a lot of views (16,735 on the original post at the time of writing) 😯

I personally don’t agree with a withdrawal from Iraq at this stage – as wrong as the initial invasion was, leaving it now could just plunge the country into civil war. If you make a mess you better at least try cleaning it up, though they have not done a good job so far 😦 it looks to me like withdrawal will only make things worse. But nonetheless, this is quite interesting – in just 5 days, by doing nothing more but posting one short 3 minute video of himself talking, this 26yo Briton has reached tens of thousands of viewers, and has attracted over a hundred of supporters to post a video with the same message as him! This could not have been done so easily, and in so little time, with a traditional march-down-the-streets-with-billboards-saying-Get-out-of-Iraq sort of protest.

Here is one of the videos below:

In general, I think that as internet becomes faster, cheaper, and more widely available, more and more people would turn to video blogging rather than text (what I am doing now…) Rather than the more detached and impersonal text you can see people live delivering their message, with a live face to the message, with a voice, accent and emotion. This is already catching on at sites like YouTube.

Hello!

I have had a blog before, but I deleted it for various reasons. Now I want to try to do something a bit different and focus less on myself (which I get enough of 24-7 anyway) but more on what I see around me and what intersts me.

Weird Al’s white & nerdy song is an understatement for me! I have edited Wikipedia in the past, JavaScript is below me, I do have Stephen Hawkings in my library, I do calculus as a University tutor, and I am currently shopping for an ergonomic keyboard 😆 I also have a BSc with majors in Comptuer Science and Pure Mathematics and I will carry on postgrad study next semester! Damn, that sounds nerdy even to me 😀 Oh, and of course I was born in what was once kindly labelled an Evil Empire! 😈

Watch this space for rants coming up!

Eternal Geek, Comrade Katcher


Nerd finger