Written from Edinburgh, Scotland, June 18th, 5:30pm
Imagine if you had the ability to scrub through seemingly endless minutes of video and thousands of images of your grandparents from the time they were 13 years old until the present. Imagine if you could read exactly what they were thinking on a particular day 60+ years ago. Imagine if you could see the time-line of their life in full, vibrant colour.
That is our grandchildren's future.
Google your grandparents and it is unlikely you will find much other than, perhaps an obituary.
Google your parents and you can probably find results pointing you to a mostly-dormant Facebook page or a short bio detailing their occupation.
Google you. Google you and more often than not, you will find pages worth of search results feeding you a stream of information about your life - pictures, video, audio, statuses, essays, news articles, biographies, profiles, occupations, birthday, education, address, contact information, relationship status, family members etc.
For the first time in history, we have the ability (good or bad) to preserve ourselves (granted, a slightly perfected version of ourselves), our memories, our thoughts, and our experiences.
Given this rather drastic cultural shift away from cave paintings, does this awareness affect the way you live? Or perhaps only the content you post?
This isn't to scare you off of Facebook or Twitter. Rather, take advantage of the neat connections that it provide for you and your kids or your grandkids! Make memories that will be enjoyable to tell you grandkids when they hop up on your lap with their holographic tablet and ask you to tell them about "this picture with your friends."
But do take into consideration the repercussions of a life well-documented. Live a life that matches the inscription you want on your headstone. If you don't, they will see the lie.