Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Who is in the next village?

Tēnā koutou katoa
Welcome to you all

aerial photograph of Lake Wakatipu, Glenorchy, New Zealand

As a child I lived on the outskirts of Dunfermline, the centre of the weaving industry in Fife, Scotland.

On a warm summer day, from my bedroom window I'd watch the cattle grazing in fields that stretched near to the edge of the south-west horizon. The Forth River lay beside that edge like a snake. Behind it loomed the smoking chimneys and dirty flares of oil refineries at Grangemouth. Closer to home were the little villages of Crossford and Carneyhill, walkable distances from each other along the western road to Kincardineshire.

I remember the first time I walked down that road on my own. I had no fear of venturing from home. Walking by the quaint corrugated-iron cafe at Urquhart Dairy, I passed cottages that, till then, I’d only seen as roofs.

The link-roads

Crossford was hardly a village; more like a street. There was a local store that sold everything. Past Crossford, narrow link-roads meandered off to Carnock and Oakley villages to the north and winding ways led towards the villages, Charlestown and Limekilns, along the banks of the river to the south. Further along, I could see the copses that sheltered the dwellings of Cairneyhill village. The country folk were friendly.

I was sure that I’d seen most of the rest of the world by the time I’d ambled back home. But I often wondered about the smoke coming from the chimneys I’d seen near the horizon. Was there really much more to see beyond those chimneys?

A matrix of links

Working in the blogosphere is much like walking along the roads that I’ve described. The link routes from where I am take me to familiar blogs. These link to other blogs, each providing further routes to even more blogs. My perception of the blogosphere is as a matrix of link-routes, only much more complex than the network of roads that I recall walking along as a child. But there are no boundaries, unlike the roads that took me to the river and went no further.

In the blogosphere there is no edge.

Ka kite anō

Catch ya later

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