Thursday, December 22, 2011

Digital Hoarders

Clutter. There’s a lot that has been said and discussed about how having too many things and  too much stuff can negatively affect your life. It crams up your abode, leaving no scope for ‘white space’. It also gives valuable insights about the person and their way of life. Why do we like collecting stuff,  sometimes even the things that we don’t need or want? Maybe it is that our possessions give us a chance to exist outside of ourselves, or maybe a chance to attach myriad meanings to things that make sense only to us.

Considering that our identities are constantly being shifted from the ‘real’ to the digital realm; observing  a person’s computer, their various external HD’s and other storage devices can give us an idea of their hoarding habits. If I take my own example, I realise that I have tons of movies on my computer that I haven’t seen, books that aren’t read and music that hasn’t been on my player even once. Still, this doesn’t stop me from downloading even more of these digital artefacts, to lovingly store till the day comes when I would be motivated enough to go through them.

Somehow, having them seems more important than experiencing them. I do watch a movie once in a while or click through an e-book at express speed on a few occasions , but the ratio of the time spent in doing that is much less in comparison to the time I spend in looking for even more stuff to download and keep.
What does this say about me and countless others? Has our practice of acquiring things seeped into our digital habits too?

Just a few thoughts that mulled around in my head when I heard a few friends talking about 1 TB hard disks running out of space and my own laptop HD graph lurking in the overfull red region.