PC - 'personal' computers


Just to bring us back to the events at VT earlier this week...
We've discussed how those involved have and could have utilized new media to alert others and keep up with what was going on...
On another note, I read on the news about how the police are now trawling the shooter's past online activity to try to understand his motivations. They've gone through his google searches and looked at his profiles on Myspace and Facebook.
I think this brings us back to how much of ourselves is tied to technology. When someone passes away, their personal computer is just as personal and revealing as the room they lived in.
It seems a big shift from what the computer originally was intended for. Who would have thought that this combination of metal, wires, keyboard and screen could be such a key part of our lives and hold so much insight into its user's personality?

I keep a diary and used to take good care of hiding it from prying eyes. We never think to try to hide our laptops from people who could easily sit down and read anything on them.

I heard a story on NPR this afternoon that reported, among other things, that many of the reporters who've descended on Blacksburg in the wake of the killings at Virginia Tech have trawled the victims' Facebook profiles, and have found there, ready-made, the names, email addresses, and often dorm addresses and phone numbers of their friends. The stories were pretty awful, of students who are trying to grieve for their murdered friends being hounded by reporters who've obtained their personal information online, with little to no effort. So it's not just the shooter whose online activities are being mined...

Sometimes I think I have a better relationship with my computer than I do with anybody else. I like it more than most people, and it's (almost) always there for me, and I think it knows more about me than anyone else does too!