Lots of conversations now. They are heated, contentious, threatening to many of us, and they are all good. It’s where we learn today, in these conversations.
Right now, a lot of us are struggling with what authority and source means within the context of contemporary literacy. I was reading The Long Tail last night, while I was waiting for me fried New England Clam Chowder, and ran across this paragraph, concerning Google. It could, as easily be about Wikipedia or Del.icio.us.
It makes connections that you or I might not. Because they emerge naturally from math or a scale we can’t comprehend. Google is arguably the first company to be born with the alien intelligence of the Web’s “massive-scale” statistics hardwired into its DNA. That’s why it’s so successful, and so seemingly unstoppable.
Certainly it frightens us. This new web of organically assembled, self-healing information comes out of an alien intelligence, where we are neurons participating and a community encyclopedia of knowledge. It’s weird. Is it working?