Just inside any one of Elf’s storybooks you may find another much smaller book.
Look inside it and you may find a link, a note, a thought, a doodle or even a password from Elf. It was one of his cutest ideas and we liked it. Keep it safe, dry, out of sunlight and never take it to the Isle of Man for the Fynoderee, St Trinnians Buggane, Manannán or Fodwys to see.
If you follow a link, like a yellow brick road, it may take you to something completely different.
If you receive a note, it make take you through Do, Re, Mi, Fa, Sol, La, Ti and back to Do on a magical musical tour.
If you read a thought that resonates well, you may share it and it may go viral (and change the World).
If you find a lost doodle, it might be part of a great big jigsaw pattern that you can finish.
If you find a password, schh! It’s best not to tell anyone. A password can be a key to a secret world as Elf found out. Hide it. Keep it safe in your mind only.
Are you in the rush to get more hits, follows and likes by feeding content into digital monsters like Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest, YouTube, Tik Tok and Facebook?
So am I.
What a crush we’re all in.
Whatever content is uploaded, it feeds an increasingly crowded, data-hungry cloud.
The big cloud now buzzes with so much commercial, political and social activity that it’s getting harder to be heard. Soon, everyone in the audience will have become their own film maker, singer-songwriter, product reviewer or just a record of their own ‘personality’. At that point, who’s it all for? Them or us?
I feel I can answer that by saying, ‘both’.
As we pool our time and interests into a tagged and searchable form, so we create and share a tangible collective consciousness. It gives us a buzz to know we are making a contribution.
However, as it speeds up the rate of sharing and combines so many different views it gives false news places to hide and builds homes from which bogus individuals and organisations can scam us. We could be in for a future of total mistrust presented to us as verified, certified and checked to extinction.
Enter the ‘good’ ones.
Will the future trusted ones be our personal bots, our AI buddies?
Will we have our own apps which filter out everything we don’t want in our personal ‘world’?
Do we become islands of thought with self-regulated harbour masters?
Is the end of chance and serendipity on the horizon?
Well, as I see it, it’s all down to what we all publish and how it is packaged. The saying, “We are what we eat” springs to mind.
The future’s whatever tapestry we make of it.