It is has become increasingly evident that there is not an IQ cut-off for being allowed to post on the Internet. I wrote about this a while back in my personal blog, suggesting that if you would not tell 30,000 people individually how drunk you were last night and what you tried to do to your pet ferret as a result, it is probably no wiser to post it on a web page 30,000 people access each month.
Fortunately, there are some sites that are both intelligent and interesting. Here are a few I read lately:
Always On – has a good article on intelligent and not-so-intelligent ways to think about web marketing. I sigh every time I hear people use phrases like “social networking” or “viral marketing”. Their basic plan seems to be that they will put up a site and everyone will go there, create web pages, post on their forum and the site owner will become rich. The question they fail to ask is, “Why would people want to go to your site with nothing on it?”
Wired magazine - is one of the few I actually read in print. The cover stories more often than not fall into the ‘why-the-hell-would-anyone-over-15-read-this’ category of the latest computer games, Japanese animation and who is downloading photos of what celebrity who just got naked/busted/married. Once you skip over those, though, there is usually pretty good information on the tech industry, new technology coming down the pipeline. They have had some interesting articles on Yahoo lately, one of my favorite spots on the Internet that lately just doesn’t seem to get it. Yahoo was one of the first places to allow you to create a personalized page, they had a calendar with email and text reminders for people like me who are always over-scheduled, but somewhere they just lost their edge. I went to their misnamed Yahoo tech page, that should have been called instead, “The random electronic junk you can buy page”. It was very sad.
Giga OmniMedia is less than two years old and they already meet my cut-off for intelligent technology, selected based on a random sample of one – me. It is a daily on-line news reader on technology. Some of their articles I could care less about. For example, I have zero interest in gaming and I am both president of the company and a big supporter of telecommuting so I don’t need an article on how to convince the boss to let you telecommute. Still, I have never once gone to their site where I did not find at least a couple of articles that interested me. Today, I thought the article on the four themes in emerging technology companies was great. I am still thinking about it (so much for multi-tasking ruining your short-term memory!) Tomorrow, I am sure I’ll find something else good.
I found newsgator after searching forever to find news sites that had more intelligent coverage than which celebrity was in rehab and what company was being bought/laid off employees/losing money and how the employees felt about it (summary:bad. They lost their jobs, their company stock is now worth 22 cents a share and they are working for a 13-year-old boss. They feel bad). Newsgator has some overlap with Giga Omni, but enough features of their own to make it worth checking out.
Finally, of course, there is slashdot. which has been around so long I believe it predates the Internet and was originally chiseled on the walls of caves in Tibet.
So, there you go, recommended reading for the day. If you can’t find something to stimulate your brain in any of those sites, you’re probably dead.