Technology Freedom in Metaphor

Twitter
If Twitter were a phone company, you could only call people who used the same phone company as you.
iPhone
If the iPhone were a desktop computer, you could only install applications approved by Microsoft (or Apple).
DVD
If DVDs were books, you couldn’t read a book from Europe while in North America (oh, and you also need secret decoder glasses).

See identi.ca for an open alternative to Twitter.

 

18 thoughts on “Technology Freedom in Metaphor

  1. Doesn’t identi.ca suffer from the same “you have to be on the same network” problem as twitter?

  2. Good question dria.

    Identi.ca uses the OpenMicroBlogging standard, so it can communicate with other systems. For example, there’s a Mozilla install of the software (Mozillaca.com) and users from Mozillaca.com can interact with those from Identi.ca.

    You don’t even have to use the same software, though, if you follow the OpenMicroBlogging spec, you could write your own system to communicate with the others (just like email).

    If Twitter were to support this standard, we’d be set.

  3. I’m not super sure saying “we’re a standard” makes something a standard, but I had no idea there was anyone working on this at all. Interesting! I’m curious to see what comes of it.

  4. Steven: Thanks for posting this, Identi.ca and OMB could use some visibility.

    Dria: OMB is more of a specification rather than a standard, but the fact is it exists and Identi.ca supports it, so you can it to federate right now… and people are. On the other hand, federation, using OMB or some other specification, is still not supported at all by Twitter, so it really is the kind of silo that Steven describes.

    @mjog

  5. if Windows were a toilet, the door would be full of holes that everyone told everyone else about.

    Just after installation it would shake, wipe, and flush for you, but after a few months you might end up standing there in its grasp for a while. Then it would occasionally just freeze on you mid-wipe and not flush, leaving you dirty and alone in the smell while strangers looked on through the holes.

    too easy. you could go on all day…
    🙂

  6. Trying a bit too hard.

    If AIM were a phone company, you could only call people who used the same phone company as you.

    Twitter is a different beast, since it’s broadcasting, not direct 1-to-1 messaging.

  7. I agree with Robb. Via twitter, you can ‘call’ anyone who has a phone (i.e. web browser). They can’t respond/em> to you unless they use the same phone company. But, then again, back-and-forth conversation isn’t really what Twitter is for.

  8. Aren’t tweets public?

    You don’t need a twitter account to access the following link: http://twitter.com/lonelysandwich/status/2528961153

    I know that’s not “open” or “free” to your mind. It’s not really “closed,” either. It’s a publishing tool. One that generates web pages and RSS feeds that can be seen by absolutely anyone, and offers elaborate APIs for interaction with other services.

  9. If Hulu and all TV network websites didn’t suck so bad, I could watch them from my home outside the US.

    Oh wait, thats not a metaphor…

    sucks anyway.

  10. If US cellphone service was the US Post Office, we’d be back in 1896, ’cause that’s when the post office last charged customers for mail delivery (which is to say, incoming messages).

  11. “back-and-forth conversation isn’t really what Twitter is for.”

    “Spluh? That’s exactly how most people (particularly BBC presenters) use it.”

    That’s what it’s evolved into, but Twitter is a micro-blogging site. It’s for one-way communication (i.e. publishing status), not conversations. The way it’s used is different from how it was originally intended to be used. That’s not bad, but you can’t fault Twitter for not doing perfectly something it wasn’t meant to do in the first place.

  12. No comments about DVD? Nobody annoyed?
    You can’t backup (not directly in an easy way, and somewhere not legally), can’t see in some countries, can’t fast forward through ads…
    If DVD were books you MUST read the “other books from publisher” section before reading the book.
    If DVD were books you can’t quote it.

  13. st forward through ads…
    If DVD were books you MUST read the “other books from publisher” section before reading the book.
    If DVD were books you can’t quote it

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