Wednesday, November 09, 2005

Self-Organizing

When i was a teenager my mind was blown by a book called "the river that flows uphill" - which was about the evolution of the human brain and about a trip down the grand canyon. It asked the question- how is it some things in this world seem to flow 'uphill' against the tide of entropy becoming more and more organized.

Well i don't really think this is an example but it is pretty damn cool if you ask me- a trend in the blogosphere for people blogging on a given topic to start making periodic indexes summerizing the activities of their peers. Check this out this index of pervious editions of the Grand Rounds, a traveling roadshow of round ups of the world of medical blogs. Each blogger (of course) tries to out-do the previous one for being comprehensive, clever, etc. -- The effect of this for outsiders is it makes it much easier to become familliar with the players, the personalities of the people in this corner of the blog-ecosystem.

To me it just is one more way that barriers to entry come down and people can be lead purely by their interest. Interested in the mating habits of bearded harvester ants? (i once worked at a hobby lobby with a guy who had a PH.D. in that) - go find the blogs on that topic and get in there and start learning - you could always go to the library and start reading up on something but now you can do that- AND find the community of other people who are interested in that topic and become part of that community far, far easier than was once possible.

one more way the world is changing (for the better, i'd say).

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