Digital Life or Collaborative Filtering?

For my money, web logs, search engines and the rest of the internet are primarily to collaborativeliy filter the endless amounts of information. I know this isnt the case for everyone else, in fact the internet is probably just as much about social activities as information gathering.

After seeing the blog Robot Wisdom I'm very impressed with the "collection" Jorn Barger has accumulated. He does use his site as a portal for "information" and other types of media. At the same time I can't really imagine ever devoting my whole life to that long page of links placed over a starry background. If information and personal expression is what we are after, should it really come from a single dark room with homemade pizza without anyone around? I think the presence of blogs and the internet as a whole has most likely allowed us to indulge our most introverted pleasures. I think its hard to argue that there are necessary social elements that one cannot get from a computer screen alone. Even the telephone isn't enough for most people. The bottom line, I think, is that blogging provides an unusual escape from reality while simultaneous broadcasting other "real" information to everyone else on the net.

The second article on Meg an Ev seems to show blogging for what it is most popularly used for these days. Personal logs on live journal, Xanga and other sites mentioned in our other blog entries seem to be much more popular because what else do we have as much to write about as our own lives. Personally I would rather see my friends in person or talk on the phone, but I understand that these types of blogs can be great in some circumstances. The blogs I like are usually written by industry or community insiders. In particular I like this blog on technology and the information technology industry techcrunch.

Some people have really doubted the new Web 2.0 wave shunning it as an unsatisfactory way to get objective reports or confirmed information. I think Blogs like TechCrunch and others written by programmers at Google or Microsoft for example provide us with information that we could never get unless we stepped into their offices and forced it out of them. Those who may not find web 2.0 useful are probably the ones who haven't found any good blogs yet (which is not a hard task these days).

Whether it's a digital life or a useful tool for information doesn't really matter. Blogs are pretty damn popular! I'm sure sociologists are interested if not concerned with the shift of community gathering grounds from a physical place to a virtual place, but I'm not judging.

Here are a couple more sites I check for Information Technology news and information: ZDnet and GigaOm


Just for Clarification: GigaOm and ZDnet are not blogs themselves, but have blogs within them.