Cory Doctorow wrote a great piece on Aaron Swartz this morning, just a few hours after he had learned his friend had committed suicide. It’s a really great read, and a peek inside a brilliant mind.
I met Aaron when he was 14 or 15. He was working on XML stuff (he co-wrote the RSS specification when he was 14) and came to San Francisco often, and would stay with Lisa Rein, a friend of mine who was also an XML person and who took care of him and assured his parents he had adult supervision. In so many ways, he was an adult, even then, with a kind of intense, fast intellect that really made me feel like he was part and parcel of the Internet society, like he belonged in the place where your thoughts are what matter, and not who you are or how old you are.
Aaron struggled with depression for many years, something that no one should deal with alone. “I don’t know for sure whether Aaron understood that any of us, any of his friends, would have taken a call from him at any hour of the day or night. I don’t know if he understood that wherever he was, there were people who cared about him, who admired him, who would get on a plane or a bus or on a video-call and talk to him.”
If you are depressed, don’t think you have to go through it by themselves. There are people in your life you care about you. If you don’t want to talk to people in your life, you can always talk to me. I’m always at nerdologyproject at gmail.