This post isn’t so much about technology but was kind of inspired by technology. I’m not asking anyone out there to take pity on me while I tell this story, but I’d like to tell it.
When I first started this blog, I was in a happy (but slightly on edge) place about what I was doing with my life and how well this blog is going to take off for me. I mean, I got so invested, I made my own crappy banner for the hell of it. I guess you could say I’m working on a better one but I have yet to open GIMP with the literal intention of doing so. I remember renaming the blog, finding a better layout, attempting to set a schedule for posting and then finally just giving it up to whenever I saw some news that was relevant.
The technology that has inspired this post is the Ouya. On January 14, I posted my first specs post on the Ouya pegging it’s release date sometime in March and then kind of fell off the wagon from Ouya news. In mid-February I realized that if I’m going to get serious about this blog, I needed to follow the best tech news outlets. So, I Facebook liked the Escapist and Verge and bookmarked Kotaku, Wired, Joystiq, IGN (I think), and the Penny-Arcade Report. Doing that was a huge help and I found myself among some of the best tech voices that are publishing today. It was also refreshing to have more places to go than Facebook, Reddit, Gmail, Reddit, UC-Email and Reddit. I signed up for accounts, I plunged head first into the forums and I started keeping up with news that would push my topics on Full Specs.
The Ouya is now set to come out on June 4 and by that time, I’ll be in another state, starved, homeless and jobless. The Ouya and I will be testing our skills in the real world around the same time. In March, when my posting significantly decreased I had been on the move. I was scouring places that would need my bachelor degree skills only to be met with a no-hire situation or ignored completely. I’ve heard my work is good, I’ve seen when people think it’s horrible, I’ve advanced myself and yet I still come up short. The one place that wanted me right away after seeing their work won’t even be able to pay me until the managing editor stops losing money. I also thought I got hired on at a radio station in NC only to suddenly be struck with weeks worth of silence (and counting) from the bossman. Not sure exactly what is happening at his end, but because of it, I’ve had to cancel any apartment shopping or hopes/dreams of moving any time soon. Well, actually, I’m still going to move, but it’s going to be hard and I have an 85% chance of being subjected to living out of my car.
Four years ago, I was nearing high school graduation. I was a mess to say the least. I wasn’t a bad student, I was really smart in fact, but I had no friends, no idea what I wanted to do and I came to UC because someone pointed the school out to me as an alternative from Ohio University (of which over half of my graduating class ended up going to). So, there I was in August in a dorm, alone on my new Macbook. I had signed up for the Journalism degree with a double Sociology major but I completely fucked around my freshman year. I started “doing stuff” as a sophomore and really ramped things up toward the end of my third year and now into my fourth.
A month ago, when I thought the Ouya would be out, I was sitting in my room crying. I had no job prospects, would be kicked from my “home” in a month and really hated school. It is safe to say I’ve found major disdain in over half the classes I’ve taken with UC. Not the journalism classes, I’ve really loved those on the whole, but those goddamn electives and even some of my sociology classes. And that makes me really sad. Shouldn’t I have been loving my college experience? Shouldn’t I be building those skills to get a job? Shouldn’t I have wonderful stories to tell my professional friends once I get said job? Because I won’t. The first journalism class I took, the teacher basically told us every day we wouldn’t have jobs. Now a part of me thinks I should have listened and got the hell out of there… but I love writing. I love saying things about other things to people. As soon as I discovered the Internet, I was writing like mad and I even learned how to code a little before Facebook took that all away from us.
I still love to write. I stuck with journalism because I love to write. People stick with things when they find they have a real talent. I’m, clearly, not here for the money. I’m also not here to be a part of those million dollar magazines. I like to be a part of a community and just live a life where I can come home and play with my dog. I don’t want a penthouse in New York.
The Ouya is this tiny device (currently getting shit on by Verge) that wants to be that different gamer gear in a big gamer gear world. It probably won’t make Xbox-sized profits. It’ll probably never feel the warmth that the PlayStation enjoys. The Ouya will live comfortably in the hands of indie developers and Android devotees.
That’s where I want to be. A small part making an average human-sized dent among the rest of the world, most of which will probably never know I exist anyway. I need to take a leaf out of Ouya’s book and just open myself up for whatever happens. I need to be hackable, developable, light and maybe a little flimsy. The Ouya won’t have an penthouse in New York … and neither will I.