Me and my outboard brain

Because of the time I spend online in a day, and the fact that I have been doing so for more than twenty years, the Internet increasingly feels like my outboard brain. It feels biological. It feels as if some of my neural networks extend beyond my skull and synapses fire off all around the world.

Some ideas I can cope with within my own skull, some I need to push outside onto the Internet to deal with them there. And not just ideas. I remember many, many moons ago realising that the small group of early bloggers that I was part of were all writing similarly melancholy posts. It was as if the Internet was passing on mood as well as information.

Today is one of those days when I have been feeling vulnerable on the internet. Sometimes it is things that happen or are said online, sometimes it is just one of those periods when we want to hide away and be quiet. But I can’t, and don’t want to, cut it off. I don’t want to hide. Over the years I have learned that the discomfort invariably means growth, that there is something I have to deal with, something that my outside brain is trying to teach my inside brain. I have learned to listen to this.

One thought on “Me and my outboard brain

  1. I speculate that for many people the Internet is exacerbating a mild dissociative identity disorder. They are maintaining one or more stable personalities through different popular forms — the troll on Twitter, the party guy on Facebook, the all business professional on LinkedIn — which may even be contrary to their real life persona. In a console game this may end when the machine is turned off, but the Net continues nonstop. So perhaps the vulnerability you feel is just a recognition arising from the subconcsious that there is more than one of ‘you’.

    Or you could be coming down with a cold.


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