Commonplace books that survive from the Tudor period contain a huge variety of texts, including letters, poems, medical remedies, prose, jokes, ciphers, riddles, quotations and drawings. Sonnets, ballads and epigrams jostle with diary entries, recipes, lists of ships or Cambridge colleges and transcriptions of speeches. Collecting useful snippets of information so that they could be easily retrieved when needed, or re-read to spark new ideas and connections, was one of the functions of a commonplace book. But the practice of maintaining a commonplace book and exchanging texts with others also served as a form of self-definition: which poems or aphorisms you chose to copy into your book or to pass on to your correspondents said a lot about you, and the book as a whole was a reflection of your character and personality.
In 2008, after five months of solo travel through Asia, I met up with Ozge on her home turf. (If you can travel with someone who is host, guide and friend together, I urge you to do so.) There followed a near month of highlights, as we ate and drank our way across Turkey, starting in Istanbul. It should always be nighttime, and we should always, all of us, be at rooftop restaurants near Istiklal, having meze with raki.
In the interests of total uninhibited geeking out, I'm going to start doing all music-related Twittering from @lukasmusic. Don't get used to all the substantive news so far, it's mostly going to be me raving about new beats.
Reading Kenyan blogs (like Bankelele and Sukuma Kenya) is helping get me up to speed on how a certain, educated segment of Kenyan society sees current events. Depending on how optimistic I'm feeling, they either demonstrate the uselessness of the intellectual class in all cultures, or they're part of an emerging national consciousness that might bring needed progress.
You know, back in the day, everything that goes on Twitter now was blog fodder. Only, now that blogs are, like, a big fucking deal everybody crafts these well-written little mini-essays. So they need a "new outlet" for their ephemera.
Kirra Miller is a 13-month-old from Lake Park, Florida. She's my friend Cory's niece, and daughter of Justin and Amber. She was hit by a car on May 18th, 2007 as her mother towed her and a friend in a bike trailer. She's in critical condition at St. Mary's Hospital in West Palm Beach. Her family asked me to set up a site where they could update people on her condition.
Update: the site was down for a while; it's back up now.
It's all in the title ... including the slightly off grammar. Anyway I've frequently found myself wondering where to find good conversation about specific topics; it usually seems to be the fastest way to get up to speed on a subject. Depending on the quality of the participants, it can be much better than any single reference source. I usually feel I understand a Wikipedia article much better after reading the talk page.
So it'd be great if I searched for "WRX car audio" and get directed to WRX modders talking about the best setups. Too bad Talk Digger seems to suck right now.
The natural history of the web
Given human beings' natural tendency to anthropomorphize anything more complicated than a rock, it's natural that we tend to expect any complex entity to grow, peak, decline and die. Rock bands, game consoles, clothing trends, empires, scientific paradigms. But some things have a different lifecycle, or go through multiple cycles. It looks like websites are or can be in that second category. Metafilter used to be the hip A-list hangout, and it was relaxed, funny and smart. Then Matt opened membership up to the masses, we went to war with Iraq and the place went to shit. But now it's back (at least for me - maybe, like Columbus discovering America, it's been there for a while.)
To start thinking of the most ephemeral place on earth as a home for long-lived communities - communities that won't be destroyed by changing zoning laws, or core residents moving away - is a little bit brain-bending. Time to start thinking long now.
Phil Gyford: My New Site
Some sick ideas: "pages for individual weblog entries ... [show] relevant contextual information: any photos I took the same day, what I was reading that day, any links I posted, and what music I listened to most that week." Well, obviously! Shit.
The Big O Blog
NBA legend Oscar Robertson has a blog. Sadly, he's lost some of his faculties:
A strong bench is obviously important and here again I think the two teams are pretty evenly matched, with Lindsey Hunter, Antonio McDyess and Elden Campbell for Detroit, Brent Barry, Robert Horry, and possibly Glenn Robinson – who hasn’t played that much thus far – for the Spurs. (emphasis mine)
Medianstrip was the college web zine you wrote for a couple of times. It was also all the people associated with it who've gone on to bigger and better things. It's live again, newform and rectangular, as we all filter outselves through Stewart again.
Interesting links, introduced in the best way: with excerpts. "Excerpts? I can just click on the link and start reading..." no you can't. First, there's the mental dislocation that accompanies going to a new site. "Hm, loading...weird design, hm, guess it's ok, where's the text? ah here, hey, I like the way they do permalinks, ok, so, the text." Second, the ideas that make it interesting may be buried too deep for you to pick up in your shallow skimming across the web. This way, though, you get a feel for the article more or less instantly. You don't miss good links, you don't click on boring ones.
You're probably looking for random neat webstuff. If so, you really have no reason to be here, because metascene does everything I do, only better. The links are cooler and more obscure, and instead of a few useless introductory sentences, he writes whole mini-essays. He lives in New York. He write poetry for his girlfriend for Valentine's day. He met Bjork. Needless to say, I hate him. Honestly, linking to him here is mostly a way to drag him down here with me.
(8/4/3 -- updated, go look -- oo, hiltons!)
Log Format Roadmap
No one's decided anything yet, so what are all these people supporters of? The general idea that it would be nice to have a standard weblog format? "I am a supporter of peace, love, and interoperable content management systems."
I had a dream the other night. I was supposed to be doing this one thing, see, but instead I kept going the other way: through forests, up hills, across fields, more forest, saying to myself, "I'm almost to Tucson, might as well keep going." I wanted to get to Paul's for some reason.
Kim Jong Il (the illmatic)'s LiveJournal
"Dear diary. Bush still doesn’t ‘get it.’ I tried making my feelings clear but he’s too busy ignoring me, he is such a jerk. Everything in his life is just Saddam, Saddam, Saddam and I am sick of it.
On the plus side, I think my hair looked pretty good today. Also I went frolicking at Paektu Mountain and the rainbow came out again. After dinner some of my subjects sang me a song because I invented Outer Space."
Are you going to watch the MTV reality series on a UC Davis sorority? I'm not, but my roommate is, so I expect I'll get to know everyone on the show pretty well. Flickerfade had a roommate who was one of the pledges; wonder if she'll say anything interesting.
The Historical Present
They're doing a PowerPoint face-off. One of the rounds, 'Rapt By Rap', requires the participants to create the PowerPoint presentation they imagine their hip-hop heroes would use to accompany their lyrics. This is anticipatory; the entries aren't up yet.
And the site's tagline made my day. And I needed it.
Interesting, but not surprising in the least: Boston bloggers get together to bowl, drink and geek out. I don't quite self-identify as a blogger, yet, but I might join them in order to expand my network of connections. Yes, bowling with other geeks seems like surefire way to increase my power and influence.
Tim Finney seems to have decent taste in music - we both got into micro/tech-house around the same time. He also seems to have the same desire to write about it that I do - what he lacks are the inhibitions that prevent me from raving on for eight hundred words every day about the music that I love. Which is inspiring to see.
Which means: expect many music-related rants in the future. Starting, tonight, with why Luomo's Vocalcity is the Alpha and Omega of micro-house.
14. Do you ever think that checking your email every few seconds is like having a sharp, piercing sound that blasts right next to your ear occasionally, scrambling whatever thoughts you may have been forming, and making it difficult to form new ones? Remember that story where the guy's watching ballerinas with balls and chains on their feet on TV, and he's got this thing that makes a piercing sound attached to his head, and the government put it there because he was so smart it wasn't fair to everyone else? What was that story called?
boom selection - looks like a music blog, focusing on bootlegs. Fun mp3s to download - Britney vs. Eminem, Outkast remixed by Fatboy slim. (Update: bsx is a helpful filter for the boom selection stuff, whittling it down to the must-listen boots and mixes. I live on the wrong fucking side of the Atlantic.)