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Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Since When is it Bad to be Wrong?

People are wrong all the time, myself included. I'm wrong more often than I'm right, and I'm well aware of it. I don't mind being wrong, it's how we learn to be right. If I'm wrong, I expect to be made aware of it, because that means that there's something I believe that's not true. If I'm wrong on this blog I give anyone who reads it a formal invitation to let me know; I want you to.

It's amazing to me that wanting to know when one is wrong seems to be a unique thing. Why would anyone be offended to be told that they're wrong when there's clear, concise evidence of it? Why would someone prefer to go about life, not only being wrong, but actively professing whatever they're wrong about? Either they're just going to make a bunch of other people wrong, or they're going to damage their own credulity by give false information to people who know it's false!

Have you ever been in a situation where you tell someone they're wrong and they steadfastly disagree, presenting all kinds of arguments to prove that they're right, but their logic is flawed, or they perceived something incorrectly, and when you actually prove that they're wrong they get offended?

That same person who condescendingly explained why you don't know what you're talking about will then say "Yes, ok, fine, YOU ARE RIGHT, everyone give a great round of applause for the human encyclopedia here, for being right. You're so wonderful and learned, please enlighten us with your volumes of vast wisdom." Don't you just want to say, "Look you f*cking idiot, you were wrong, I was (and am) right, and now you have the audacity to try to belittle me for being right?? I have made you're life better by helping you look like less of a numbskull. Next time, I'll let you go about your life in an ignorant bubble, and let everyone else believe you're the dullard you deserve to be perceived as."

Typos happen all the time. I'm sure that when I'm done with this rant, I'll have at least a couple dozen to handle myself. But this is a blog, and moreover, this is my blog. The purpose of this web space is simply my own enjoyment, and if someone else gets some enjoyment out of it, all the better. Heck, the title of the blog is =]V[=. It's not a word. It's not even a letter! (Although it's supposed to look like an M... Stands for "Monogram". ;) ) Typos in a professional setting, where information is presented for the sake of the information itself, are worse, and depending on that setting, can really frost my ass.

I cannot stand when a note comes home with my daughter from school, and there's a typo on it. A simple slip of the fingers can yield an errant letter here or there, or maybe a stray apostrophe that got hit when they were looking for enter, and that's not really such a big deal. What gets me irritated is when a statement is sent out saying "...there is amble evidence that reading to your child...blahblahblah..." Amble? First, this letter is trying to explain to me that my child's development in reading and writing is greatly impacted by me as the parent, and it's using words incorrectly? How ironic is that? Second, this establishment is teaching my kid how to read and write, and kids are going to be graded on their use of the English language and spelling and either they don't proofread their own announcements, or they don't know the difference between ample and amble.

This morning, I was reading this article about the artificial creation of a mini-big-bang, and the second paragraph said "bidto" instead of "bid to". Again, not a big deal, but that should have been picked up by a spell checker. (Don't worry, I posted a comment pointing it out. It was corrected in a matter of minutes.)

I'm gradually becoming discouraged about web publishing because of mistakes like that though. It seems that either everyone is so rushed to get information out because the longer it's out there, the more traffic it creates, which translates into exposure / profit for the website. The information takes a back seat to the profits, and typos are slipping through. Either that or the writers / editors just don't care enough to proof their articles.

I've recently been writing for a website called Brighthub.com about Dungeons and Dragons type information, (That's right, I'm a bigger geek than you may have realized. :) ) thanks to Eric at working my muse, a great guy and excellent writer, though I think most of you know that already. This has really been my first experience with any sort of professional writing, and I'm having a great time... but at the same time, it's been a telling experience.

There have been a couple of instances where I've been reading through someone's article, and there have been typos. I've always let them know, because if they fancy themselves a writer, they'd want to know. They've always been receptive and grateful for the heads up. Once or twice, I've come across an article (about Dungeons and Dragons, mind you... MY realm of knowledge on the site!) and the information's just been plain wrong. I sent a message to the writer about it, but the article is still there, and still not quite accurate.

We get paid to put out these articles, and the website makes money when we generate traffic. I'm disappointed that it almost doesn't matter what we publish, as long as someone clicks on the page and sees the google ads. Obviously, I'm going to continue to make sure my information is correct, but I feel like the fact that there is information at the same site, about the same sort of thing that isn't completely accurate reflects on me indirectly, simply due to my affiliation with the site and the topic.

Am I over-reacting to the sudden (or maybe not-so-sudden) emergence of all these typos in professional or scholastic writing? Should a typo mean less to me than it obviously does?

Monday, November 8, 2010

My blog. My own personal corner of the internet where I can bear my soul and dump my thoughts. My personal activity (or lack thereof) is a direct indication to the tempo of my life currently.

I find myself pulled in many directions all at once, and it's not really something I do very well with, much less enjoy. My job is one that requires me to multi task, and although I can do it readily enough, it wears on me quickly. By the time five o'clock strikes I'm quite drained, even though I've been sitting for almost the entire day, sometimes on a couch.

In many ways I find my personality is not suited for this "work" thing. In order for me to get something done, there needs to be a goal, and a direct route to it. Unfortunately, the world of IT is seldom as cut and dry as point A to point B. Focus, is something with which I struggle. As a child I spent as much time staring mindlessly out the window as I did anything else. I'm quite sure I had some legitimate difficulties that went undiagnosed. Now, in order to get to point B, I really need things to stay the hell out of my way.

There are times when I feel like a humming-bird, moving very quickly from left to right, to up, to down, to over to back to from point a to everywhere BUT point B. interruption sets me back very much. I'm like a train, once derailed... Takes a long time to get me back on track. Something that should take fifteen minutes can sometimes take me an hour because of one simple five-minute distraction.

So for those of you waiting for me to get to the point, my proverbial point B... Well, you're outta luck, there is no point.

I wanted to get a blog post in, because it's been far too long, and I really miss it, but have nothing in particular to say right now. Sometimes, I just want to write, and it doesn't really matter what it's about. Writing for the sake of the written word. It's like taking a walk with no destination in mind. A wandering stroll.

I will be coming back to the blog soon, and I'm sure I'll have plenty to say being that just sitting here looking at the text editor, I've got things on my mind... For now, I'm content to simply wander.

Hope all is well with you and yours.