Living the vida cognito

The Vida Cognito

It’s been a fairly gradual transition for me, and certainly many many have come before me, but I’m getting the hang of living dangerously in the open, or at least letting more “meta data” about me intentionally slip into the ether, even at a time when one’s identity and data are in increasing peril.

For example, I’m now sitting in a cafe somewhere in California. Like I’ve done many times before. The difference is that when I arrived here, two very interesting things happened.

First, I signed on to Plazes. As it turns out, no one had yet identified my geolocation to the service, so the little app was smart enough to know to take me to a “discovery” page so I could fill in info about where I am… here’s the result and a detailed map (in case you wanted to order a bombing run).

Next, I signed on to Adium. As Adium connected, a little AppleScript ran in the background and set my away status to the Plaze that I had just identified. Now my friends know where I am, in real time. Freaky!

So the other thing that happened occurred as I googled for a link for the Arc Cafe (apparently it doesn’t have a website of its own yet). The first result lead me to a review on a new service called Yelp. Ordinarily, I’d take the info that I need and go, completing the Plazes profile, content to have left some meta-breadcrumbs behind for the next Plazes participant to stumble upon.

But Yelp hooked me in, got me to create an account and even poke around a bit, leaving my first review! It seems only a matter of time before more and more of me will be trickling out in the web in interesting ways.

Consider this: even without Google, you can see my photos, read my blogs, see where I’ve been and what I’ll be doing next, read my reviews (more coming soon, I guess), see who’s talkin’ about me… what I’m listening to, what sites I’ve bookmarked… man, the list goes on and on!

Someone else has already made a page cataloging their extensions into the web. Perhaps it’s time I did the same…

Author: Chris Messina

Head of West Coast Business Development at Republic. Ever-curious product designer and technologist. Hashtag inventor. Previously: (YC W18), Uber, Google.

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