A Web that Sleeps

They keep telling me that it makes little sense. Especially when some would like to get in contact with me but I am offline. But, I gathered this perspective by accident – a website that moves along with your body rhythms is more than a website, yet dependent in this state for you to allow it to be a part of whom you are.

It was many years ago that the idea of using a personal website that lives on my mobile became something of a thought. Certainly, I was and remain happy with others doing the fun of securing and hosting my website. But, there was tins draw to experiment. And so Nokia’s research team had my attention.

But the site is slow, it’s even offline more often than not. That’s not how the web works.

I have had many moments lately where this website has been offline, and its been by design. Sometimes, the iFMW software is just a battery drain and I am on the second of battery without time or a place to charge in sight. Sometimes I need to pay attention to the fragile and unpredictable nature of my mobile and it’s ability to handle several memory (RAM) heavy applications at the same time. Not to mention also, I’ve been driving thru a lot of dead/low-signal spots. That makes for fun in accessing.

And yet even those moments seem to correspond well to how much I want to be accessed. I want to have those closed doors but open windows to the web world. I want to be online, but not necessarily be able to be accessed. And there it challenges me and this thought that the point of a personal site should be that you can be accessed anytime that people want you. However, I am not a utility – I don’t meter wanted attention very well.

When they came to the page, it was this combination of deliberate fonts and access – I could see only what he showed, but each door was a new world.

There was this moment when that mobile web server was on my N75 that it hit that I should figure out how to customize things. I was already becoming proficient with CSS because of work. Here, I had a workspace that I could play and break to my heart’s content. And so I learned. And the imagination went well beyond the abilities (I never quite got the hang of using Python). But then a piece here and there became a mission to understand and theme. I ended up with a very branded experience. First the front page, and then deeper. It became a canvas that also breathed.

At that point, I wanted more. I wanted more than to just display content. I wanted to mash it up with the rest of what I did online, and some of what had to happen offline. I wanted to thread the “me” offline with the “me” online and here was the stitch. Until Nokia’s project ended, taking away the public access to the gate(way).

They came to me with a proposal, go back to where I was, then recreate again. Make the idea viable to people and carriers. Help them.

It was a hard decision to go with iFMW. Not that I was not confident in their abilities. I was less confident in my abilities to get back there. The previous canvas took months and bore several mistake, never documented. I would have to take on this again, and even stick with a mobile platform that was being questioned towards it’s abilities in these modern times. I moved forward. So did they.

Little by little they came to find me here and not here. Sometimes it was lagging for a moment, other times for a day. When would he be available, when would he reopen the gate?

These days, the idea of a mobile web server, a server sitting on my mobile phone, is only limited by what I can and want to do. I want to keep my information under my hand (directly). I want to be both available and not available, just as I am when I breathe. I want to own the responsibility to manage my digital tentacles. This I want.

The cost is your access. Your interaction. Your bruised wallet or ego when I am only accessible via a social network that you might not have seen since you initially caught wind of it. I’ll not mind sending you on a journey just to chat, and you’ll mind not having direct access. At least until that point where I want you closer, and the layer of access becomes an email or phone number, not the gate who wakes and sleeps much like my own rhythms.

Each design is deliberate; each update educates; and minor service interruptions are moments to contemplate. Was he really worth all that effort – especially when his phone is clearly dead.