Why Video Chats Don’t Work

Video chat may never replace a real life face-to-face. I think I know why.

I was talking to a friend earlier today about video chats and why they don’t work. She said she really didn’t like to do video chats. Actually, come to think of it, I don’t really know many people that like to video chat.

I am a refugee of Generation X. I don’t know anyone in GenX that actually enjoys video chatting. Face time is irreplaceable. I mean time that is spent face-to-face, not Apple’s FaceTime. I’ve often thought about why I don’t like to video chat and I think it comes down to one simple thing. You can’t properly make eye contact.

When you’re video chatting with someone, you can’t look them in the eye. You look them in the eye on the screen, not the camera. The person on the other end sees you looking at something else – not them. That starts to grate on your nerves a little bit I think.

Could this problem be solved? Probably. If someone could invent some multi camera method of video chatting so it looks like you’re making perfect eye contact it would likely go a long way. What I don’t know is how other generations other than mine feel about this. What do you think?

25 Random Facts About Me

I don’t want this to sound too harsh, but sometimes I get tagged by these Internet memes and it just grates on my nerves until they’re raw.

What I mean to say is, of course, I’m flattered that my friends thought about me enough to actually want to know random facts about me and include me in the meme.  The problem is when I’m tagged with something like this, it lurks in my Inbox with a follow-up flag that waves at me every time I open my email.  “Hey, guy.  Remember, there’s some folks out there that want to know all kinds of random shit about you.  Isn’t it time you ponied up?”  It’s about as annoying as those bouncing icons in the dock that want attention.  “Hey!  You!  Me!  Click me!  Hey!  Hello!”

Anyway, I don’t mean to say anything too harsh to Karen or Tony for tagging me on this one, but sorry, I’m going to combine your efforts.  Karen tagged me for 25 random facts at Facebook and Tony tagged me over the blogosphere for 7.  Not sure why the two memes have such an interesting diversity in numbers but whatever.  I’ll do the larger of the two evils.

Enough whining.  I’m starting with the list already.

  1. When I was 5 years old, I had one of the most terrifying nightmares ever.  I won’t describe it here, but I can still vividly remember the dream and plan to include it in a story someday to “deal with it.”
  2. I have recurring nightmares regarding tornadoes and frequent attempts to escape them.  I believe these usually occur during times of high stress and is somehow linked to the tornadoes of 1974 that struck Huntsville (I was two years old then and likely recorded some activity that still sticks with my psyche).
  3. I think I have far too many interests and hobbies and therefore really never start (or finish) any of them.  This actually bothers me greatly and it probably shouldn’t.
  4. Regardless of my ruthless and cruel sense of humor, I’m actually a sap on some things.  Particularly children.  Since I’ve had children, I get terribly upset when something bad happens to a child in a movie.
  5. I enjoy cold weather the most because it makes hot showers so much more interesting and soothing.
  6. I absolutely, positively cannot stand automobiles.  I can barely tolerate driving them and most certainly cannot stand doing maintenance on them.  I will always pay others to do even the simplest thing to maintain my vehicles.
  7. I am color blind on certain colors.  This is mostly wrapped around red and green but frequently discover that my eyes misidentify other colors as well.  My wife loves to point it out when I screw that up.
  8. It genuinely bothers me that I cannot see without glasses or contacts.  Sometimes it frustrates me so badly that it will instantly irritate me.  I often feel like I’m boxed up inside a container or trapped behind some kind of invisible veil if I dwell on this one too long.  The thought of Lasik or any surgery to my eyes terrifies me so badly that I doubt I’ll ever go through with it.
  9. Sometimes, things bother me too much.  When I was a teenager, I was terrible about dwelling on things and was unable to let stuff go.  These days I actually handle this much better unless it’s something that I believe can change and is worth screaming about.
  10. I think I have an absolutely terrible temper that is sometimes aggravated by severe lack of sleep.
  11. Once when I was a wee lad, I was invited to an Alabama public television show that starred a puppet.  I’m sorry, I don’t recall the name.  Unfortunately, something about the experience made me so sick that I yakked on set and it never aired.
  12. The one time I had chicken pox, the bumps were inside my organs.  Last theory I heard on that one was that my asthma caused the virus to do bizarre shit.  I was hospitalized for a week over that one.
  13. An ailment that struck me when I was little left me with a doctor informing my mother that there was little chance I would ever have children.  Through some miracles performed by a doctor, that turned out to be untrue.  Not long after being cured of this ailment, the doctor was killed in a farming accident.  Today, I have three wonderful, hilarious, fun and loving children with a thick skin and a seriously biting sense of humor.  (Note: this is one of those odd things that still gives me chills when I think about it.  It feels very fate-esque.  Perhaps why I enjoy shows like “Lost” so much).
  14. In general, I seem to relate better to women than men.
  15. My weight bothers me terribly and is the source of much consternation within the recesses of my brain but I often feel very powerless to do much about it.  That’s an ongoing war, let me tell you.
  16. Even though I constantly find out about new things regarding the culture, I find myself identifying with the Chinese more and more often to the point of wondering if I were Chinese in a past life.
  17. I don’t like to guess the endings to movies and people who try to figure that stuff out and talk about it in the middle of the movie should be fucking shot.
  18. People who talk in movies should be fucking shot.
  19. You will never catch any of my children talking in a movie because I taught them right (well, still working on the 4 year old).  They will not be shot.
  20. I barely missed being cast in “Space Camp,” a movie that was shot here in my home town.  It stars Kate Capshaw.  Just a week prior to this film coming to Huntsville for shooting, I was in a Space Camp commercial.  When we wrapped up shooting, the film folks were moving in.
  21. I miss acting terribly.  My acting “career” started at age 13 with a Fantasy Playhouse show.  The last show I did was in 1999 for Theatre Round the Corner.  During this timeframe, I did probably 60-70 shows, including musicals.  I’ve always hoped to get back to this one day when the children are raised and gone, if I’m not dead by then.
  22. I do not write enough.  I wish I could write more.  Sometimes I think writing is the only thing I was ever close to doing well.
  23. I was once fired for utilizing a CEO’s “open door policy” to explain to him that his management style sucked the sweat off of a hog’s balls.  Maybe it was a poor delivery.
  24. I think I’m actually pretty good at my own workflow and task management, but it has taken years and years to get to this point.  It’s rare that I forget an action or fail to hand it off to someone.
  25. I am always attracted to fiercely mean women and I’m not sure why.  Are all women that mean, perhaps?  Who knows.  But the cruel humor helps.
  26. BONUS NUMBER 26!  I’ve lived in this town all of my life and never had a reason to move (36 damn years).  In many ways, it’s because I feel like I cannot escape it and something is holding me here.  Not sure why.  People who are familiar with my writing may recognize this theme.

Alright, so that’s it.  I just started at the beginning and went through whatever popped in my head.  Hope it bored you to tears 🙂

I’m not going to tag anyone with the responsibility of maintaining the meme because I don’t want them to be pissed at me for tasking them with something they may not want to do.  Har!

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