April 06, 2010

Serendipity and the Internet

photo by Anna Rice

In a great article for the WSJ (ironically, it is "subscriber only" content on wsj.com), columnist L. Gordon Crovitz notes something I've been thinking about for a long time:
A funny thing happened on the way to the information revolution: While digital media have given us access to endless information from diverse sources, many of us focus our news habits on narrow topics and familiar points of view. We end up discovering fewer new ideas or opinions. In short, we have more information but less understanding.

The challenge for modern information consumers becomes: How do you discover what you don't know you want to know?

Old-time print journalists bemoan the absence of serendipity—the accidental discovery of stories that readers didn't know they were interested in reading.

Serendipity is, according to the article, "not randomness but unexpected relevance."  I'd like to think that's what this blog is about, too.  Over the past few weeks I've been thinking a lot about its relevance, and whether I should continue on with it.  I can't seem to break the habit, I'll tell you that!  I have 2 full months of posts written and scheduled, and they often get moved back for more current relevant topics.  (It's a little ridiculous.  I know.)

Anyway, I hope you all find my work serendipitous, because it looks like I'll keep blogging as usual.


  1. I, for one, hope you will keep blogging. Your posts are always interesting.

  2. Your blog is beautiful! And beauty needs no justification.

  3. Me too! Also, it took me a moment to focus on the photo credit and realize it was my sister :)

  4. I will admit, Em, that it took me a couple times to put the right name down too. :)