One of the motivations to write the words for this blog has been the oceans, vast immeasurable tides – seas of limitless horizons – of words that there are already out there on this great Web of World Wide Words. This might at first seem counter-intuitive: why, is this Oliver-man composing yet more pages of words, when we are clearly in a surplus enough of such words as we are? The answer is simple: these words are different. Not profoundly different, not life-changingly different, but in some specific, unique, and, with hope, valuable, way.
Melodramatic moi. No, no, no, this just won’t do. I have prematurely titularly referred to this great internetworked collection of words as something in which I was ‘drowning’. I don’t intend to go back on it, but it does open an interesting little window into my mind. I’m not so much drowning in the sense of being incapacitated by the vast and uncontrollable, as being self-asphyxiated by my purely elective efforts to control it. Enter Google Reader (http://google.com/reader) : the web-based, software behemoth on a cloud, upon the back of which I am waging my war against those great sweeping tides of information overload by fiercely coercing it all neatly into folders. Reader is a web-application developed by Google that allows you to aggregate all the blogs, websites, and feeds you want to keep up-to-date with, all together in one place.
In the days of olden times, I might have gotten fifty new blog posts a day, and I considered that a fair amount to trawl through. Now I’m getting over four hundred, due to subscribing to a variety of pre-packed ‘bundles’ of popular blogs. So, now, via the magic of the internet, each of my days is filled with a fresh magazine of fashion blogs (from the knitting, sewing and fashion bundles), computing (PHP, MySQL, Web design and Google blogs) and academic (from economics, mathematics, science, neuroscience and books bundles) all of it fairly consistently high-quality reading-material, sitting side by side and fairly happily. With my sacred staff of internet knowledge in hand, instead of drowning, I am becoming a skilful tamer of the deep blue and the white surf. Now I must be off, I have 94 unread items…