Sunday, January 10, 2010

Lessons from my leonine chat icon

If you inspect my profile on various OS X and Google systems lately, you'll see a theatrical yawn ...

There's a lesson in the yawn. When I created a new user account on my i5 running 10.6, I chose a standard animal icon. Since it's a family machine, I wanted to choose an icon that would impress the children (didn't work). Hence the lion.

I then connected that account to my MobileMe account and, just as I found on 10.5 11 months ago, the login image on the iMac propagated to all my MobileMe associated machines, wiping out whatever I had there.

It ate them.

Then, after I fiddled with iChat and Adium, it propagated to Gmail and GoogleTalk/Video Chat and the wider world.

None of this is documented of course. It just happens. It's an emergent behavior; a side-effect. One bit of whimsy, and bam -- I'm a lion everywhere.

There will be more of these things in years to come. More strange leakages and propagations.

If you want something private, keep it on paper. And keep the paper out of range of Vicon Revue wearing lifebloggers ...

Update 1/12/10: Today I notice the OS X 10.6 lion has metastasized to my Google Reader Shared By ...
I'm sure this is violating all kinds of copyright laws, but all of my actions were entirely correct. I think I'll just have to get used to my emergent avatar. Maybe he'll appear on my virtual tombstone.

Update 1/18/10: Here it is on my Google Profile.
This is really silly. I'm going to try restoring the GP image and see if it propagates the other way.

Update 2/9/10: Now it's spread to Google Buzz.
Only it's no longer affixed by my gmail address, it's attached to my corporate email!
My Google Reader Shared items (feed)

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