log (2009/04/03 to 2009/04/09)

Connecting to server...
You're now chatting with a random stranger. Say hi!
Stranger: hi
You: Hi, random stranger!
You: What is up?
Stranger: im playing poker right now
You: Kewl!
Stranger: about to get my ass handed to me
You: haha
You: With actual people, or online? Poker?
Stranger: online wiht fake people
You: Never draw to an inside straight.
Stranger: i try not to
Stranger: and i small ball alot
You: Know when to hold 'em, know when to fold 'em.
Stranger: like right now
You: Does Omegle enhance your pokering?
Stranger: no
You: haha
You: Distracting, I expect.
Stranger: yea
Stranger: and im playing for real chedder here
Stranger: want to play?
Your conversational partner has disconnected.

So yeah, I've been using Omegle, for no reason that I articulate yet. It's utterly fascinating to me; M finds it completely weird.

My first contact spoke only in Call of Duty 4 tournament jargon, which was interestingly novel. Then I had a several-minute conversation with (nominally) a twenty-year-old woman in Washington DC who was bored and filling out job applications; she gave me her AIM id at the end, which was fun (now I just have to figure out how to actually use AIM). Then someone from Brazil, with both of us sporadically using Google Translate to go between English and Portuguese. After that one I sent in Omegle feedback saying that they should totally integrate Google Translate into the site.

Apparently Omegle got lots of talking-up on Orkut, which is Google's social networking site that is heavily used in Brail; so yesterday at least most of the people on Omegle were Brazilians. This morning I talked briefly to (that poker player up there, and) a fifteen-year-old boy (young man?) in Finland.

The only person I've hung up on more or less right away was a person who said "hi asl" as the very first thing. I said "haha" and disconnected.

One person said "BIG COCKS" as their greeting, which was pretty funny. Eventually it turned out that I was Paris Hilton and they were Britney Spears, and we said some very silly things.

Another person posted a link to a silly YouTube video of some dance number (not Rick Astley), and them immediately disconnected.

I had one longish discussion of Omegle and programming languages and Italian opera and stuff with someone two timezones to the West of me. That was fun, and probably the one that I most would have liked to get some contact information from that I didn't. The whole thing about whether or not to share, or to want to share, identity information is a really fascinating aspect that I don't have anything profound to say about yet.

So it's very very wild and strange. And it was started by an 18 year old high school senior!

I was about to write that I wonder if it'll stay simple and ad-free for very long, when I went to the homepage and noticed there are now a few text-ads over on the righthand side. I mentioned this to my next correspondant (interlocutor?).

Connecting to server...
You're now chatting with a random stranger. Say hi!
You: Ah, I see there's advertising on the homepage now! :)
Stranger: really?
You: Yeah, just a few little text ads on the righthand side.
You: Maybe he'll be a rich little 18-year-old soon. haha
Stranger: hey you're right
Stranger: do you like cheese?
You: I do!
You: Pirates, or ninjas?
You: ( mmmm cheese )
Stranger: ninjas
You: Ninjas are definitely in the lead so far.
You: What about chocolate?
You: versus cheese, say?
Stranger: thats because they are way cooler
You: Yeah, they are relatively awesome.
You: But Pirate culture has alot going for it.
You: There's no "talk like a ninja day".
Stranger: chocolate is the most halelujable thing in the world. did you know that?
You: I would have to consider agreeing.
You: That is quite a word!
You: Did you just make it?
Stranger: I guess XD
You: Smileys! ^_^
You: What kind of cheese?
You: ( Venezuelan Beaver Cheese? haha )
Stranger: it's offensive to you
but cheese cheers me up when I am blue
I dont know why, but a nice sharp cheddar
makes me feel a whole lot better!
Stranger: A limburger or emmentaler
makes me grin and jump and holler
and oh, the pleasure!
of a slice of cheshire!
You: I am writing this all down.
You: I am also very impressed that those words appear not to occur in Google anywhere. :)

The weblog comments suggest that there is considerable "trolling", but that's not very surprising, and is pretty much expected in such an anonymous environment. One thing that I haven't heard of or seen yet is Omegle-spam, which I would expect to become a significant problem if the site survives; it would be so easy to write a 'bot that would connect, send a URL, and disconnect (at first I suspected the interlocutor mentioned above of that, but the video that they linked me to didn't seem to be a revenue-generator for anyone so I suspect it wasn't that).

And of course there's the notion that Google will buy Omegle sometime soon. *8)

(See also a nice chat dot net, which seems to be exactly the same concept, but which for some reason hasn't gone as viral. It does have you enter a "nickname"; I wonder if that one droplet of non-anonymity makes a difference? Omegle went down at one point, and I went over to A Nice Chat and had a long talk about countries and the price of smoked salmon and stuff with someone in Belgium who was also there because Omegle was down. Funny!)

In other news, Spennix is level eighty! Which is pretty exciting, but doesn't actually change how she looks any, so I have no associated pictures. But Fan of Knives is pretty awesome!