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A plea to fellow paranormal researchers: break free of walled gardens and build your own digital gardens

Earlier this year, one of my favorite thinkers, sci-fi author Cory Doctorow coined the term "enshittification." Enshittification is the process of a platform destroying itself. It often goes like this: the platform initially seems great, so users sign up, then it shafts its users in favor of attracting business users,

a halftone illustration of a walled garden with the text "trapped in walled gardens"
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How to set up your own digital garden

Yesterday, I wrote about why I set up a digital garden. Today, I wanted to share a bit more about exactly how I set it up, as well as my current workflow for sharing notes. I'm only a couple weeks into tending my digital garden, so I wouldn't be surprised

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Tending the garden: digital gardening goals

I recently set up a digital garden to share some of my in-progress research notes. Yesterday, I wrote about what a digital garden is. Today, I want to delve into my goals for the garden. My notetaking methods As a paranormal researcher, I use the zettlekasten method of taking notes.

mint green and white pixel art of a mushroom and some sparkles
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Digital gardens, zettlekasten, and paranormal research

How and why I'm sharing my in-progress research notes

yellow and purple pixel art of a rosebush with the word "digital gardens"
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Digital gardens and fungi research (Learning Things: May 15, 2023)

It's really feeling like spring here in NYC (or summer, really—it's been toasty). My wife and I went to Central Park this week, which is in bloom and full of birds (we saw a black-crowned night heron, which is always exciting). The cranesbill bloom pixel art that accompanies this

A pixel drawing of a cranesbill plant
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Vintage zines and research woes (Learning Things: May 8, 2023)

Here's a rundown of what I've been up to this week: Paranormal research Over the weekend, I spent a while looking through old UFO newsletters and zines. I love the aesthetic of the typewritten, xeroxed 1950s-1980s publications (I definitely have a bit of anemoia when it comes to 'em.) I

a yellow UFO with a purple background with a graph of notes
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On mylar balloons and forgotten futures

Some thoughts about mylar balloons, what they represent in the paranormal, and what else they might mean in terms of our world and our future.

a halftone photograph of blue mylar balloons with the words "use your imagination"
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Tree talkin' and train tracks (Learning Things: April 24, 2023)

I wish I could say that I made a ton of progress on all of my goals this week, unlike last time. But that'd be a lie. I was a bit under the weather this week and moved very, very slowly, so it's kinda a wonder I got anything done

White tree branches with grainy pink shading and a mint green background.
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Magnolia trees and frustration (Learning Things: April 17, 2023)

A lot of my efforts (in all areas of my life) this week have felt like trudging slowly through mud. While writing this, I paused and looked up whether a Mercury Retrograde is approaching, and sure enough, it looks like we've been in the shadow period since the April 6.

a black and white digital drawing of an owl with blank white eyes
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Starting the biodata sonification build (Learning Things: April 10, 2023)

Biodata sonification supplies and Erik Satie-inspired automatic drawings.

A black and white drawing of a snake plant with the repeated words "love to talk to plants" in the background.