May 25, 2012
Touching—sort of—across time & space
In high school I had my first long-distance girlfriend. My dad would roll his eyes at our pre-Net attempts to connect. “Oh, you’re probably eating a cheese sandwich as 6pm, because Jeanne said she’d eat a cheese sandwich at 6pm…” He was kidding (and wrong), but there’s much to be said for synchronicity across space.
When a friend is typing, you can see where they’re touching on your own screen. And when your fingers match up, from halfway across the world, haptic feedback can allow you to serendipitously touch. In a text-me-later culture, Feel Me enables communication that’s transient and visceral.
I think it’s rather brilliant. And as for Jeanne, sometimes I now see her across space, hobnobbing with Mitt Romney. Funny old world.