In the past few years I’ve developed a conflicted relationship with cynicism — especially as it relates to the tech and media industries, which I have spent most of my adult life working to improve and reform. While I often judge myself for the time I spend thinking about “The Darkness” of #latestagecapitalism and the perversions of the worlds we live in, I still find that expressing it can help me better render and articulate the problems that need to be worked on. These days though it seems that most people I interface with know very well what the problems are, yet feel completely disempowered to do anything about them, or worse, are entirely confused about what solutions will actually help and not just generate more damaging cascades and new methods for the powers of greed and social status to pervert them. …

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Our great super-power as humans is the ability to create, imagine, and simulate potential existences. Every time we think about “the future” we create a new simulation and automatically begin to pattern match for ways in which changes, or tweaks, or circumstances, might damage or benefit us. This constant multi-dimensional time-travel is so much a part of our default state that we rarely even realize we are living in these other worlds.

Even as we walk the streets, we are being constantly incepted by suggestions of what simulations to create in that very moment — a gently nudging asking you to temporarily simulate a reality where you are living with a new object that someone has created and is now “marketing” to you. For many of us these simulations is where we live most of the time. The otological world is becoming more of a shared space to create the content for our simulations. It is now the norm that when visiting a beautiful, inspiring place, to spends more time documenting that moment and framing it for future simulations, then actually experiencing and enjoying the potential states available in “the now”. …

jcinis:13839, Ubud, Bali, Indonesia

Thursday was the Balinese holiday of Nyepi, their way of celebrating the new year. This is a day when the entire island is in a compulsory day of silence. All telecommunications are turned off, the international airport is shut down, and only emergency services are allowed on the roads. The local police and religious leaders patrol the streets to make sure that people do not leave their houses and are keeping quiet with lights-out.

The following are some thoughts jotted on my day of solitude:

Searching to react

As I watched myself sit with nothing I needed to be doing, I begin to search and twitch, looking for something to react to. I realize that this what has made us so successful as living organisms, but the idea that our superpower is being proficient in looking out for danger and optimizing for future existence makes me sad. I think we prefer to feel as though our deep breaths and triumphant screams can shift the world to react to us, instead of us to it, but the truth lies somewhere in-between.

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The new moon is a time for ceremony here in Bali. Local villagers and tourists alike journey to the water temples to bathe their sins away and to prepare for another cycle of pious living in the digital age. Yesterday I watched in my makeshift sarong and vacillated about jumping in the water. The calculated weighing of risk: What ARE my chances of infection when drinking from this sacred spring? Of course I didn’t get in.

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I recently decided that I’m going to attempt to quantify my life in days instead of years, since I believe it to be a metric that both feels more visceral and actionable. To accomplish this, I’ve also built a simple alpha-version of a customizable homepage called Lifeday. Simply set your browser’s homepage to and enter your date of birth to be reminded of how long you’ve been outside of womb. I’m also testing out formatting my dates as “{handle}:{lifeday}”.

And now for some random thoughts:

  • Authenticity is time-bound. Authenticity is always a slippery term, because on multiple dimensions it has loose boundaries. One can only know authenticity in one’s own actions, within one’s own culture, and in one’s time. …

October 14th 2018

For a long time now, I’ve needed to do a better job of getting ideas out of my head and communicated more clearly in writing, however, each time I’ve attempted to do so, I’ve failed, mostly due to a lack of patience for articulating in long-form and a deep need for my output to be precious and perfect and irreproachable. Today I’m going to attempt to start a practice of just writing down my thoughts as they come and publishing them as-is.

Here are today’s thoughts:

  • Kim Kardashian’s offering to the world is to serve as a platonic ideal of desirability. This is form of wealth-inequality, or cultural-capital-inequality, is better served with it’s non-existence so that it can remain an emergent property that is less reified. …

This week I decided to find a new doctor in New York after almost four years as a patent of OneMedical.

When I first went to OneMedical, I was completely blown away. As someone who is scared of doctors offices and who also grew up with a number of incredibly thoughtful and passionate family members who were doctors, I thought that I had finally found an organization that lived up to what my ideals of what a medical practice should look like.

When I walked in for the first time, I was greeted like a human being (I know novel right?) in a very nice room and was given a glass (yes a real glass) of water and was not seated on some terrible sterile furniture. When the doctor greeted me for my first visit he pulled me into a room that felt more like a professors’ office than a doctor’s office and I sat in a nice chair and had a 45min conversation with him about my body and past health and all of the things that I have had going on. He truly listened and I actually felt heard; he was treating the patient and not just a chart. We followed up with labs, again with a lovely person helping me and sitting in a comfortable room. (Oh did I mention that they didn’t use all the terrible throw away paper, but instead had organic linens that they changed on the beds after every patient?) As I was leaving, I stopped by the front desk and was informed that there was nothing I needed to do, that they would handle any hassles with the insurance company if they came up and to not worry about anything, but just to have a great day. …

With more and more people receiving their news via the facebook newsfeed I worry that it has been, and is continuing to work as a polarizing force in American politics. After all, the newsfeed is designed to give you what you want from your in-group (or at least the content you will spend the most time interfacing with).

As far as I know, the newsfeed has no weighting for contradictory views or the views of people outside of your immediate network - I see no way that this did not have a measurable effect on this year’s election.

I’d love to investigate and write about this more but could use some help.

Does anyone have additional insights? Have deep investigative pieces already been written?


Jessey White-Cinis

A lover, thinker, hacker, news junkie, yogi, fashionista, founder, technical and creative polymath, Great Pirate, who is trying to be kinder every day.

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