Monday, April 14, 2008

Managing information in Second Life - Treating IMs like email

Never have I wished for more time. I could use another 100 hours for every day and still not do, or see, or talk with all the people I long to spend time with. Add to this the immediacy of Second Life where, in five minutes, 10 urgent IMs might come in... and it's a wonder we aren't all lunatics.

Robert Scoble and thousands of other social network darlings thrive on the constant noise and ricocheting off Twitter, Seesmic, and all those other APIs. Robert Scoble... wow. He astounds me. That Scobleizing machine of his follows 20,375 people on Twitter alone! Even me! And I don't have one thing to say on Twitter of any consequence whatsover. By the way, I heartily recommend that you not follow me on Twitter. I am mostly a silent wallflower there, and an infrequent visitor.

Is that time or my brain melting away? Photo of Salvador Dali's Persistence of Memory courtesy of the Museum of Modern Art, New York

I've tried every approach I can think of to manage incoming information from within Second Life better, including setting myself to Busy for days on end, begging for notecards and emails only, or just ignoring IMs altogether. There have been several times I've actually been afraid to log in, the information load has been so heavy. This doesn't mean that I don't want to hear from people. I most DEFINITELY do. It's just that I like to have real conversations with you... full sentences, complete thoughts... and giving that one person or group my undivided attention. It's just the way my mind works!

Then on Saturday, it dawned on me. I'm going to treat IMs just as I would email. I will love getting them, I will read them all, and I will respond to them, but in my own good time. I hope people will understand and forgive me my limitations.

Do you have a better way of managing all this? If so, please let me know! How? LOL. How about an email to, or a comment here?


Princess Ivory said...

OMG Bettina, were you are dinner with us tonight? I was wrestling with these same issues. And how do I keep up with reading all the blogs I like, and the emails, and then I log in and there are all those group notices, and IMs. And They are things I want to go to, so I scribble them down on little scraps of paper. I can't click them off the screen until I do so, which means that if I came in world specifically to do something important, it is now sometimes several HOURS later before I can get to it. I have started dropping groups and blogs, just because I am so overwhelmed. There has to be a better way. I spend so much time on information processing and managment, that suddenly it is late at night, and I have done nothing even remotely resembling artistic creation. And I am unhappy.

What can we do to handle our inworld lives better, so that we still talk to our friends, go to interesting places, AND still find time to create?

Princess Ivory

Bettina Tizzy said...

Ah, no, Princess, I wasn't! Was it a good dinner? :D

I guess the one thing I'd love to have is the ability to make myself invisible to all my friends temporarily - with the click of a button - without having to go through a friends list and unchecking every single name. This must be especially unfair to oldbies who must have friends lists that are miles long.

I don't know how involved that might be, but I find that people are much chattier if they see you in world... and that's a great thing, but not all of the time. We all need a little solitude and working time to do things as ourselves and not as an alt.