Flappy Bird (2013-2014) was a game for the iPhone which, in the span of perhaps a month, half a year after it was uploaded, rocketed up the charts of the App Store and became The Game of the Moment before being deleted by its creator for reasons that remain unclear. It was a maddeningly difficult challenge in which you played a small bird, cursed to move forward, forced to tap the screen to stay afloat. You existed in a world of pipes: Pipes grew upward from the ground, emerged downward from the heavens, never to meet. Only by drifting through the narrow space between the pipes could you survive.[...]
Yesterday, when Google Reader was still working despite the fact that it was July 1, the day they told us it would end, I convinced myself that Google had somehow forgotten to turn it off, or they were just going to let it run without doing anything further, and that, so long as I kept my mouth shut about it, it would keep going and I would manage to make do with whatever decaying remnant of it crumbled around me. (This is how I deal with most things in life; it is amazing what kind of disarray and dysfunction you get used to if it happens gradually enough.) And yet, [...]
"Hashtags, as we’ve come to know them, will linger for some time. Twitter still sells them to advertisers, and there are multiple reports that Facebook is planning to bring them onto its social network in the coming months. And yet it’s becoming easier by the day to imagine a world without the octothorp. Some hashtag Twitter searches — see below — now turn up not just matching tags but untagged keywords, suggesting that even Twitter’s uses for the hashtag are decreasing." —R.I.P, hashtag. You were too beautiful for this world.