Information flow on the Internet

From Everything Shii Knows, the only reliable source

This website is an archive. It ran from 2006-2010. Virtually everything on here is outdated or inaccurate.

I wrote this in February 2002 when I was 14 years old. I'll update it sometime.

Remember the good old days, when the Web was made up entirely of informative (or humorous) websites off of colleges? HTML was designed for document presentation, but today, it is used for a much wider range of purposes. I have a two-bit philosophy on the kinds of content currently available on the Internet. It doesn't include e-business, which is a strange entity, but otherwise, I think it categorizes the Web well.


Liquid Internet

The liquid flow of information is the what the WWW originally tried to capture, but, as I shall show below, it didn't quite make it. The primary form of liquid Internet would be news sites such as CNN and the Drudge Report, which provide a steady flow of information from the outside world. USENET is also working example of the liquid Internet; it and its improvements such as UBB [Internet forums] both create content through their own discussion, as well as letting its users report their own real-life news.

Stable Internet

The HTTP protocol and HTML format are designed to post liquid information in a solid form that you need to refresh your browser to take another look of. Sites such as the one you are reading right now only change to add new information or fix errors; these sites are the ice-sculpture Internet (liquid Internet, solidified :) that the WWW was originally full of. Unfortunately, information is liquid, so HTTP and HTML are not really fit for sites such as CNN and your favorite Web bulletin board.

Directories and Search Engines

Directories and search engines help you find information from the ice-sculpture Internet. They can be fairly successful. They don't do a good job of archiving the constantly changing flow of news [in proper order and relevance] though; that brings us to...


Blogs are the fluid form of directories. They filter the liquid Internet, bringing us the best discussions and news on a day-by-day basis. They also have a strange way of spreading memes; when someone finds some interesting ice-sculpture content, they'll add it to their blog even if it isn't new, and that blog's readers will in turn add it to their blogs... an effective form of advertising if you can get interesting enough content.

Slashdot is a top-level blog, viewed by many thousands of people; it reports mainly news, but also some memes from other blogs. If a meme spreads all the way to the top, it might even get turned to ice and added to an ice-sculpture page, as was the case with AYBABTU.

Since blogs are in the lower levels a network of individual people, they can also be used for editorials, rants, and flames. Blogs then become blogged themselves, as people spread the new meme that the blogger has created.

Blog Directories

At first, blogs were a refreshing step back from being submerged in information, but now there are way too many of them. So... we call upon blog directories to get us the URIs of good blogs. Regular directories also have blog directories hidden inside.

However, directories were designed to organize ice sculptures, remember? So you won't get the latest updates, only the names and links. For a filtered look at all those blogs, you'll have to call on...


Blogs of blogs, of course. How foolish of you to think that it stopped at first-level blogs. Automated metablogs track when blogs were updated and what they are linking to. User-created metablogs such as this one link to blogs.


There's so much stuff on the Internet now that eventually you'll be visiting a site so many levels upward of the content that it'll be impossible to find any, liquid or solid. And here it is!

Good and confused, eh? I thought you'd be. Here's a little chart to help you understand...

Infinimeta --- Infinimeta
Metablogs  Blog Directories
    \     /
     Blogs             Directories & Search Engines
       |                         |
Changing Content  || Unchanging Content 
(Liquid Internet) ||  (Ice Sculpture)

I myself enjoy metablogs, specifically Blogdex. Blogs themselves are usually pointless, but Blogdex gives me the best of all blogs. I don't think we'll be seeing a metametablog for quite a while... when we hit the next exponent.

I wonder what happened to Blogdex? The need seems to have dried up.

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