So much, so fast, so well?…

Caught a Wired story via Ross Mayfield. It’s called “We are the web”, by Kevin Kelly .  Definitely worth a read!

The article provides an excellent history of the web, and some thoughts about what it means and where it’s going.  Here are a couple of quotes.

“How could we create so much, so fast, so well? In fewer than 4,000 days, we have encoded half a trillion versions of our collective story and put them in front of 1 billion people, or one-sixth of the world’s population. That remarkable achievement was not in anyone’s 10-year plan.”

Wow. What’s going to happen in the next 10 years with everyone creating and publishing their own content through blogs, ezines, ebooks, etc. Are we at some kind of tipping point? Or, will we approach one soon?

 The article has some interesting observations about that growth of content.

Later, Kelly talks about the future in an ‘all connected’ world and says:

“What will most surprise us is how dependent we will be on what the Machine knows – about us and about what we want to know. We already find it easier to Google something a second or third time rather than remember it ourselves.”

This touches on something that crossed my mind a couple of days ago. I’m already starting to google for sites, rather than use my bookmarks. I was also thinking about all the content I’ve collected and carefully stored on my hard drive – and never looked at again (but I might someday, right?). Couldn’t I just use one of the search engines to locate most of it again online. Do I really need 120GB of storage on my hard drive? Sure, engines like Copernic can help me sort through the stuff I’ve collected, but at some point I’ll have to archive and store it somewhere. Unneeded duplication?

I have to admit that I’m more comfortable having my ‘most important stuff’ on a personal machine for now. But I’m thinking hard about it. Is yesterday’s news worth the cost? At what point will I trust the infrastructure enough and believe it will be there when I need it?

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