Thursday, March 5, 1998 at 16:44

I read through the archives that you have in your homepage (I have to admit that it's really intersting to read what people have written to you, good idea to put in the archives :)).

I noticed that one of the people wrote:

I met a new friend on irc who, interestingly, used filled pauses in his typing. He would fill in pauses, literally, by typing, "um.."  and "well"

You both seemed surprised that people use filled pauses while typing but  since I know that I do it as well, when writing to friends, that is, it seems to me to be very natural.  I mostly use "..." and when writing to friends or chatting I rarely ever put a period at the end of a sentence. It partially has to do with the fact that my letters to friends tend to have a stream-of-consciousness nature to them.   The other reason, particularly when chatting is that I feel that it is unreal to actually use complete sentences with periods at the end, using "um", "well", "anyway", is much more conversational and if your typing is fast enough, you really do type out something similar to what you would say in a regular conversation.  The reason why this letter doesn't fit the pattern that I'm suggesting is because I actually think for a second before writing out the sentence, it's more formal, I suppose.

Thanks for telling me about your chat experience.  Although I once might have been able to do stream-of-consciousness writing in a chat room, I think now it may be impossible.  I have become one of those typists who must correct every typographical error immediately.  When my fingers make a mistake I somehow instinctively know it (even when I'm not looking at the monitor) and I cannot help backspacing and correcting the error before proceeding.  It might be that whatever is at the root of this habit similarly causes my habitual use of FPs, false starts, restarts, and other hesitations.   Perhaps I should join chat for a while to improve my communication skills.   What do you think?

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