Instant Messenger – I Control The IM’s, Not the Other Way Around

4-11-10: Initial release.

Would you believe that some days I have no idea what to write?  Then suddenly something comes along my path, and just like that, I have a new article to write about.

I came home today after a trip visiting the family, and I log onto Trillian real quick on my netbook. Within 5 seconds, I had 5 IMs from five different people. Granted, 2 of the MSN IMs were spam bots, but the other 3 IMs were real. One was a person who wanted to send me a music video, and the other two IMs were offline messages.

Of the two offline messages I got, one of them was thought provoking. I will summarize it below:

It seems like you are hardly online anymore. What happened?

This is a very interesting question, because its open ended, and I have so many ways to spin this.

Would it surprise you if one of my answers was along the lines of “OMG, yes. That is exactly how it needs to appear!”

Although that is somewhat true, there is more to this story than meets the eye.

So tell us, why are you hardly online?

The real question is why are you hardly online?  The only good answer I can give right now is one based on perspective.  For you see, I control the time I am online with my instant messengers. Just because I am not actively logged onto my MSN or whatever doesn’t necessarily mean that I am not online period.

I could be on Tunngle playing, or I could be online writing an article with all the instant messengers off.  I could be away visiting family, and although I may be using the computer there, I am not going to spend time on instant messenger because time with family and friends is more important than logging onto IM.

Plus, in my role, I get a lot of random IMs day to day and I don’t have the time to deal with all of them at any given time.  It just depends on how I feel.

Or it could be even more simplistic than that. I could have been online on that particular day and then I log off. You login and you just missed me and don’t even see me throughout the week and you assume I am hardly online, but that is quite the contrary.

Mismatch schedules can give the perception of inactivity, but that is not true as we now know.

Let me give you the new tactics that I am using right now to help organize my life, and make sure my time is well spent.

Now I have talked about this before, but I will reiterate it again. I have a desktop and a netbook computer. My netbook is the only machine in my house that has Trillian installed. What this means is that if you see me logged in on MSN, Yahoo, AIM, etc then I am on my netbook. If I am logged in online, then my status message usually dictates that.

During the weekdays, right after work, I login to Trillian in the evening before dinner. It is this time I do all the daily work of answering comments, and reviewing emails and forums. It is during this time you may catch me and you can send me questions or chat whatever.

Once I am done with what I want to do online, I log off of Trillian for the night. However, there might be a chance I might login later in the night and you might catch me again. It all depends on timing.

In the past month or two, a person who solely uses MSN maybe under the impression that I have disappeared, because they never see me on MSN.  The reality is I was on MSN, but many hours earlier in the day before that specific user logins to MSN. Therefore, the perception of my online availability is skewed.

Now here is a secret that may cause me more trouble than harm. >_> Usually every night I am on my desktop for various reasons. It is in these cases I have Skype running in the background. Why Skype?  Why no Trillian on the desktop?

Well, its simple. Instant Messenging in general disrupts computer activity.  It’s almost like an instant “Hey, hello. Talk to me!”  Skype can also send instant messages too, right?

The answer is yes, but its a bit more tolerable. Not many people use Skype and that is fine with me. The main reason I have Skype running when I am on my desktop and no other instant messenger is because when I am gaming, it is nice to have a VOIP session with some guys and get our frag on.

If I am in a game session, I turn on my “Do not disturb” status so messages don’t interrupt my gameplay.  Do I get some text messages every now and then?  Yes, but its tolerable. I do answer them, and when I am not gaming, I do have some text conversations.    But 90% of the time I am on Skype, its because I don’t have the time to type out words and would rather talk instead of type when I am multitasking, whether that is gaming, writing a blog article, or doing some other computer task.

So that is my story. The odds are very good that if you want to talk to me and you don’t see me online, then I may very well be online in skype. If a question is tearing you apart, and you need help, then find me in skype and hopefully I am online. Otherwise, leave me an offline message.

Knowing the longevity of these blog articles, this article will only last a few days before anyone remembers or knows this article exists. For the current readers, if you have a skype account, you can add me (versatileninja).

Hopefully, this gives some insight into my practices, and why my lack of online presence is quite the contrary.

Trivia Fact: I was online in Trillian when I wrote this post for the full 47 minutes.   To say that I am not online is really a fallacy, isn’t it? 🙂

Posted on April 11, 2010, in Life and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 3 Comments.

  1. venomouswonder

    Haha, well thank you sir, for that enlightening article. It’s funny how many of the IMs I send you get turned into articles. That’s really what amazes me. Like that “Why I Do What I Do” article; it was based on something I sent you (you already know that, of course).

    Just throwing it out there, the line “Mismatch schedules can give the perception of inactivity, but that is not true as we now know” should be some kind of famous quote- if it isn’t already- because it is quite true.

    But thank you again, for enlightening everyone! =)

    When I asked that question I meant that you are not online at your USUAL times. I always used to be able to catch you at the same time every day, but your schedule has changed recently. I try not to bother you with lengthy messages because you are a busy guy, and I like to spare you the nonsense.

    • “Usual times” is so relative, isn’t it? I suppose in retrospect, there is a new “usual time”, and a new medium to go along with it. Let’s see how things work out. Summer is almost here, and I think I have some PS2 games that deserve their owner.

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