Friday, March 20, 2015

Letting Go of Holding On

For serious hoarders, these are trying times. More and more, things that were once … um, things … are now just so much ethereal vapor … bits in the cloud. Music, books, movies … soon no intellectual property will be housed in physical objects, and even physical objects will be email-able to someone’s 3D printer. We will have attained the state of Plato’s ἰδέα theory … in which actual things are merely inferior facsimiles of the pure concepts that exist in the cloud.

Yet somehow the prospect of Library-of-Congress-sized vaults filled with thumb drives and SD cards, or Google’s round-the-clock, round-the-world servers, does not hold much appeal. Any experience that requires a glass slab between 5 and 50 inches diagonally to enjoy is pretty paltry. It’s a form of sensory deprivation.

And Spring cleaning takes on a whole new meaning.