Chell's blog

Thoughts, ideas, and other things 'a bit unkempt'…

Six Degrees, Duncan J Watts


This reading was really long, and ventured into unknown territory for me… (the rhythm of crickets chirping…?), but I did know from the very start (or at least I think I did), why the reading was chosen for us in networked media. All the concepts Watts was discussing, from the power outage in New-York, to crickets chirping, to the notion of a ‘small world’ and that we are all connected within 6 steps, if you like to one everyone in the world, were all mechanisms of networks.
As was explained in last week’s unlecture, our blog is not a website. It does not exist until someone types in the specific URL. All our blogs are simply tiny pieces of a massive structure, which is the world wide web. A network. Think of a spider “web” for example, all pieces are joined at some point. That is like the internet, each little comment made on the internet is continuing to build this network of the internet, but all sites can be reached by being on one. This is hypertext. You could be on your own Facebook page, where your friend has posted on your wall. You click on their name which takes you to their wall. From here you can see that they have “shared” a funny cartoon, which you click on, which takes you to another site, which has an ad panel down the right hand side, advertising camping gear, and sponsored by google, you can keep clicking, and by Murphy’s law, although it would be a long process, you would eventually see everything the internet has to offer. On a more realistic scale, by clicking the ad for camping gear you might see that your Aunty Bess has “liked” this camping gear, or purchased this offer; so you click on her name, and see her wall, from which she has listed you as “family” and you can go back to your own page.
This reading reminded me of ‘Small pieces loosely joined’ by David Weinberger, even his title says what I am trying to explain in a more succinct manner 🙂 But I think I get the point, and I find it fascinating. I have a sudden urge to start a chain letter or email, see if I can get it to Taylor Swift or Rachel Zoe! Hehe 🙂

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