I’ve been following the meme that is the weblog (or ‘blog’ to the initiated) for a couple of years. It has recently been gathering considerable steam and so I thought I’d better jump on the bandwagon. For those unfamiliar with the phenomenon, here is what Salon.com, who recently started their own blog service, defines them this way:
Weblogs, typically, are personal Web sites operated by individuals who compile chronological lists of links to stuff that interests them, interspersed with information, editorializing and personal asides. A good weblog is updated often, in a kind of real-time improvisation, with pointers to interesting events, pages, stories and happenings elsewhere on the Web. New stuff piles on top of the page; older stuff sinks to the bottom.
Dave Winer, developer of weblogging software and writer of the long-running Scripting News weblog, has a brief history of weblogs here.
Popular subjects for weblogs include emerging technologies and American politics, but really they’re about anything and everything. They’re a new genre of writing unique to the Internet. Unique because interactivity and interconnectedness are at the blog’s heart. A fine illustration of the medium being the message, the blog can’t really exist (or be read) without links to other pages (often blogs). Without getting too power-to-the-people, blogs take the “personal Web site” to a new level of sophistication and empowering everyday users who have things to say. They are an illustration that corporations do There’s also been important develops in the technologies behind blogs, but that’s a story for another entry.
There’s been much hype about blogs in the media recently. This is probably due to the fact that a lot of journalists feel threatened by bloggers, who are essentially amateur journalists who specialize in one or two key areas. Every time a journalist publishes an article, they can be sure its being picked apart on at least one blog across the Internet.
This weblog will, I think, be part list of links, part soapbox and part online journal. Not an online journal in the emotive “I’m-in-love-with-my-dog-and-I-don’t-know-what-to-do” sense, but more in the “I went to this play, and here’s what I thought of it” sense. It’s an experiment more than anything; a way to air a few views, post a few links and generally get some dynamic content on my otherwise very dull personal site. Lastly, as a writer who hasn’t written much other than technical articles and geeky Web content for the past year, hopefully this blog allows me to stretch my creative legs a little.
The name of my blog paraphrases a line from a Michael Ondaatje poem,”King Kong Meets Wallace Stevens“. Ondaatje’s my favourite poet, and I just the liked the obtuse, evocative nature of the line. The stanza the line comes from reads as follows:
Meanwhile W.S. in his suit
is thinking chaos is thinking fences
In his head–the seeds of fresh pain
the bellow of locked blood.
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