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Dear <<First Name>>,

What if I told you that you can alter the data in a report before you have ever seen it? Sounds ridiculous, right? That’s one of the super powers I am going to give you today.

This week my coffee stirrer camera story traveled across the web because you and the readers of Letter Zero helped spread the word. Thank you! My story was picked up on Reddit, PetaPixel, and diyphotography.net. It goes without saying that this is thrilling for me. It is every artist’s hope that their work gets seen and appreciated by other people. 

How many people saw my camera story? I don’t know. Yet.

At the end of this post I will log in to Medium to check how many people saw my story and I’ll share the number with you. But for now it is unknown. I swear. I haven’t checked the stats on my story because I want to show you how my mental powers have the ability to change the number before I have even seen it. Why are you still doubting me? Soon you will have this ability as well. 

Here’s how it works. You can do it, too, just follow along...

First we have to define what we want the number on the server to be. For simplicity, let’s say it is 1,000. Feel free to pick a different number if you want. Extend your mind into the computer. Hack your way past the firewalls and security systems of the database and find the blank field where the data is stored. Using your mental cursor, type 1000 into the box. Don’t forget to hit enter on your mental keyboard to commit the number to the computer’s memory. 

Now that we have defined the number we can decide how we want to change it. Should we push it up or bring it down? That depends. How do we decide if 1,000 people is too big or too small? On the one hand if you were standing in a crowd of 1,000 people it would be overwhelming. Then again, 1,000 people is minuscule in the grand scheme of things. This is the hardest part about telepathic data manipulation. You need to make tough decisions. 

Personally, I want the number to increase drastically, but you should decide for yourself. If you want to see me succeed you can crank the number up. If you’d prefer to see me struggle go ahead and shrink the number. I won’t judge, go ahead and pick a direction and commit to a number. Got it? 

Like Ferris Bueller editing his grades on his school’s computer, let’s reconnect our brains to the database, find the 1000 and change it to the new number. Aaaannnnd... Done.

Are we satisfied with the new number? There were lots of zeroes in my number and now I am concerned that I pushed it way too high. As much as I would like to be on Ellen showing off my camera, its probably better to lower my expectations. I am going to make another edit, feel free to do the same.

Imagining the extremes of high and low numbers makes me realize how much my emotions hinge on what that number is. The higher the number the more I feel undeserving of the attention. The lower the number the more indignant I get that people don’t recognize my work. And there is no middle ground. None. And I don’t like the energy fluctuations that come from injections or withdrawals of pride. Similarly as you play with the numbers you might realize that your opinion of me changes depending on the number you pick. 

Telepathic data manipulation is more time-consuming that you would think. At what point do you settle on a number? Meanwhile, as the number jumps around on the computer, the thing that hasn’t changed is me, or my work. And if I am honest there is still a lot of improvements that can still be made on both of those products. Why waste time on imaginary numbers when there is real progress that can be made on myself and my work?

Fiddle with the number long enough and you realize that what you are manipulating isn’t data at all, what you are really editing is your emotions. Compared to changing data on a computer screen, the ability to control with complete authorship how you react to any situation is a true super power. And this is what separates potential heroes from the mortals who let themselves be built up or destroyed by the information streaming out of their computers.

As far as your consciousness is concerned, nothing in the world exists until the moment you notice it. The data stored in a computer is there, but it has no consequence, it just sits there invisible, inactive, and impotent. Data is worshipped because we think it has the power to give us insight, but while being data-driven sounds great, it puts the power on the wrong side of the computer. Why would you let the computer tell you what your value is when you can define it yourself?

After all that, I am going to revert my edits to the database. I’ll let somebody else decide. It doesn’t matter. Nevertheless I did promise to share the stat with you, so let me let me jump over to Medium and check my stats. Be right back... The number is: 15,900

Back to work. I’ll write again next week. Stay creative.

Your friend,
Adrian
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