I seem to have set off a bit of a snafu when I called this the nerve-tech age.
I’d like to clarify exactly what it is I meant.
Written and produced by Kale Brown. Artwork by Kale Brown.
All music and sound effects used are available under a CC0 license. Music was ‘Sphere’ by Andrew Kn. [LOUD EERIE NOISE] was ‘Sci-fi Ambient Drone’ by Niedec.
Visit us on Twitter at @sinkholepodcast or visit the website at sinkholepodcast.com.
INTRO: [Someone inhales deeply; their inhale has a distant, echoing quality to it. A strange, rattling sound grows in volume and speed before fading into eerie, warbling music. There’s a strange crackling sound. The voice whispers “Sinkhole.” The pitch and speed of the music drop, fading into the next track.]
[A low, slow hum fills the background. The melody is subtle and largely ambient.]
So… [breathy laugh] it’s come to my attention that I’ve been had.
Uh, many of you were kind enough to let me know that text-to-speech is absolutely still a thing for NEV users and there’s no real, tangible reason I should have to go to the effort of recording my posts.
But, on the other hand… a whole lot of you responded very positively and said it helped with understanding and internalizing the information being given, so… I’ll just keep doing it, I guess. If it’s helping, I… I don’t really mind the extra work.
Obviously, content transcriptions will always be available for those of you who need them or, y’know, just can’t stand my voice. Both completely valid reasons.
Some days I don’t want to hear me talk either.
Uh, so… let’s stop putting this off.
I seem to have set off a little bit of a snafu when I called this the nerve-tech age and said it was preceded by the digital age. I didn’t realize that particular system of historical classification wasn’t in widespread use. I’m very sorry for confusing people.
I’d like to clarify exactly what it is I meant.
Yes, obviously a lot of us still use digital interfaces. I think it was, um… about thirty-five to forty percent of the world is not NEV-capable and still exclusively uses digital technology.
I mean, hell, I’m a DI user. I’m using digital technology to record this.
That’s because being in a technological age doesn’t mean the technology that dominated the previous age is no longer in use. It just means it’s no longer the dominant technology in use. Not only are people still using digital interfaces and storage mediums, there are actually still a lot of people out there using and creating analog tech.
It looks a lot different than it used to, but it’s still a major part of certain industries.
The reason I called this the nerve-tech age is because almost all new information-based technology being created is being created for NEV users, and then adapted for DI users as an afterthought… if at all. That’s exactly why so many of the complaints you see coming out of this platform are from DI users, yet no one ever seems to leave it because of them.
The truth is, there’s not really anywhere else to go.
The informational infrastructure of this platform was not designed to be used with a digital interface, but it’s one of the few remaining spaces that actually attempts to bridge that gap. There aren’t a lot of places left where people who are not NEV-capable can still hang out with people who are without forcing the NEV user to interface with the platform digitally even while connected to the NEV.
This platform does the opposite, which means there are a lot of things this space does for NEV users that just cannot be replicated in its digital interface. If you’re active in other communities on this platform, I think you’ve probably noticed the kind of dynamic that can create.
That’s where the complaints come in. There’s a pretty widespread sense of neglect felt by DI users, a sense of not being a priority to the dev team… and that can cause tension.
I’m not trying to say that there’s someone-
[VERY LOUD, EERIE SOUND]
[sudden creaking as speaker shifts in their chair] Oh my god, really?
[LOUD, EERIE SOUND CONTINUES]
Uh, give me a second. [sound of a wheeled chair rolling across a hard floor]
[receding footsteps, audibly barefoot]
[a heavy window slides shuts, abruptly dampening the LOUD, EERIE SOUND]
[returning footsteps, much more audible]
[sound of the speaker settling into a creaky chair and wheeling back across the floor]
Sorry about that. Uh, what… what was I saying?
Oh, um- this is not me pointing fingers. I’m not trying to place blame on any particular party involved in this situation, and this is not me finding fault with the dev team. This is just me saying, “This is the reality of what the world is at this point in technological history.”
This is the nerve-tech age.
Just think about it: when DI users complain, the most common response you’ll see from support staff is kind of a politer version of “get nevved.”
Really think about that for a second.
Less than fifty years ago, if your response as a tech developer was “I’m sorry you’re not happy with our product. Unfortunately, unless you get this safe but fairly invasive neurological procedure to allow you to access the system as intended, there’s nothing I can do for you,” people would’ve freaked out.
As unbelievable as this might feel to some of you, the idea that turning your brain into a wireless neural interface is a normal thing to do is a fairly recent development.
This is the nerve-tech age, and I say that as a DI user who is directly and inescapably impacted by the implications of that reality. The digital age is over, and there’s not a whole hell of a lot any of us can do about that… except hope that those of us who can’t get nevved don’t get left behind completely.
So, yeah… that’s what I meant. That’s what I was referring to.
I really hope this helps clear things up.
I never meant for something I said to kick off an argument and, uh… I’m really sorry for the role I played in that.
It may not have been intentional, but it still happened, and I regret that it did. If I’d known, I would have been much more comprehensive in my original explanation.
[mumbled] I can’t end this post like this. This is such a bummer.
Also, I haven’t talked about data restoration once, which is not really gonna do much for getting us back on topic, is it?
I need to, um…
Oh, um, this kind of got lost in the confusion, but I was really surprised to learn how few of you knew about the Sinkhole tapes! I was sure that was a big part of why we were getting so many new members. [laughs]
I know it’s a pretty local phenomenon- and by pretty local, I mean literally just here- but I always thought it was common knowledge. I mean, obviously everyone knows about the Sinkhole, and yeah, we’re… what, forty years out, and ten years out from the Fling? So, it’s been a while.
But… I just thought everyone knew about the Sinkhole tapes!
Unfortunately, I don’t really have any answers I can give you. I know a lot of you are very, very curious about them, but… truth is, nobody knows what’s going on with the Sinkhole tapes because nobody knows what’s going on with the Sinkhole.
There still aren’t answers for that. There never were.
It’s just that after a while, everybody… stops bothering to ask. Life keeps happening and it never stops, not even when you live in a city with a big weird hole in it.
You can get used to almost anything, and we’ve all gotten used to the Sinkhole.
It’s not normal… but it’s normal, if that makes sense.
It’s like that thing with eels. You know it’s weird, and its always kind of there in the back of your head, but you don’t really think about it most of the time, until someone reminds you.
[MUFFLED EERIE SOUND]
I don’t have any personal experience pulling from Sinkhole tapes, even though I live… [falters]
Don’t use this against me. I’m trusting all of you to be normal about this.
I live in the Sink, so I don’t work with magnetic tape.
I love it, I think it’s a really cool storage medium with a fascinating history, but… I live in the Sink. And I don’t really have anywhere I can store and work with materials that isn’t in the Sink, so it’s kind of off the table.
So… yeah, there’s not a whole lot I can tell you about it. I’m not even sure if it’s possible to isolate the, uh… the Sinkhole interference from the base data- though, I mean, that could be a very cool experiment.
Hell, if somebody wants to send me a tape that’s already been pulled along with the data from it, I’d love to give it a shot. I think it could be really interesting.
Who knows? Maybe we’ll learn something new.
Anyway, stay safe and try not to fall into any holes, I guess.
I hear it makes for a bad afternoon.
[The ambient music fades into the next track.]
[An eerie, warbling music akin to the opening music plays, rising in volume and then slowing and quieting.]