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About

This blog discusses the topics covered in Everything Is Miscellaneous (May 2007, Times Books).

The book was published May 1, 2007, by Times Books.

You can buy a copy of the book in the proverbial places where books are sold. Or go to Isbn.nu for a choice of online stores.

You can email me at self AT evident DOT com.

Brad of BradSucks installed and customized this site for me. It uses WordPress as its blogging software. (You may — and should — know BradSucks as a pioneering Web singer-songwriter-one-man-band. Thanks, Brad!)

33 Responses to “About”

  1. on 27 Mar 2007 at 4:30 amYannella Amendola

    I read the interview about Why Tagging Matters by Lee Rainie, Director of Pew Internet and American Life Project and I think was really interesting. Currently I am working in a project of tagging call tag2find, will be a pleasure for me if you have the time to visit my website http://www.tag2find.com and tell me what are your opinions about our project, I think you have a lot of knowledge about the concept of tagging and I think this will be a really helpfully for my team.

  2. on 26 May 2007 at 9:04 amMichael

    The book is a fascinating read, with an extremely visually noisy cover – why print text in white on a highly-reflective glossy blue background? This is a kind of visual equivalent of high and very disturbing background noise, and is quite off-putting. Computers have matt screens for a reason – so that one can see what’s on them – putting text on a highly glossy cover shows a disrespect for the reader, and conveys a message that what’s written there is not to be read.

  3. on 15 Jun 2007 at 6:35 amDaniel

    Hello,

    Thanks for interesting information in your blog.

    Tip: Your titles “prevents” me from promoting your content.

    I would like to bookmark links to several of your posts so they appear in my public bookmarks at Diigo.com , sharing them with others (and you will get more visitors).

    Why your “titles” prevents this in practise:

    As I have too little time to both categorise and rephrase titles, I mostly use the one-click posting option, that goes right into the list, unaltered, like a “look what I stumbled upon” thing.

    However, since your site currently shapes all your titles in this way:

    “Everything is Miscellaneous » Blog Archive » TITLE-GOES-HERE”, then my list of bookmarks will both look really strange (like a storefront for your site, taking some of its “credibility” and usefulness away. Further, it becomes annoying and actually moves the catchy titles out of focus. That is counterproductive.

    I suggest you do the following as “best practise”:

    Use just that form on the front page only.
    Use the reverse form on each blog post:
    “TITLE-GOES-HERE » Everything is Miscellaneous » Blog Archive”

    That way it will be more catchy, less annoying, and dont make my bookmarks list look odd when I add links to 10 of your posts one after another.

    Anyway, thanks for interesting content.

    Daniel

  4. on 16 Jun 2007 at 10:47 amDavid Weinberger

    Daniel, I don’t know yet know how to do this in WordPress. I’m looking into it. Thanks for the suggestion.

  5. on 25 Jun 2007 at 5:18 pmqpnbhbasop

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  6. on 10 Jul 2007 at 9:10 amPaul N

    Is this a practical joke? Is this some kind of performance art thing?

    I clicked a banner ad at SciAm.com for what looked like an interesting book called Everything is Miscellaneous. I never click banner ads, but this ad somehow got my attention.

    The ad linked me directly to this blog, which is supposedly about the same book, Everything is Miscellaneous. The blog is loaded with random information, as miscellaneous as can be, but there’s nothing here about the book I thought I was finding out about. Not even a link to other sources. Does this supposed book even exist? Is this blog the “book”?

    Is the theme of the book “You can’t get there by clicking”?

  7. on 27 Jul 2007 at 1:32 amIan

    Maybe the “Pages” menu should be at the top of the right-hand column rather than at the bottom. WordPress should be able to do that, surely.

    Like Paul N, I also struggled to find the interesting stuff (sample chapters, reviews etc) and was confused by seemingly random blog entries and links that appeared to have nothing to do with the book. Now I see that the same links are displayed in tabs across the top, but for some reason they didn’t stand out when I first looked at the page. I’m going to send people a link to this “About” page, rather than to the home page.

    I suppose I should have been able to find what I was looking for by using the tags or something… but I”m not yet conditioned to think that way. I think some default pattern of organisation is useful for orientation and quick access to the commonest queries/views, even if we allow the miscellaneous/tagged way of looking at it too.

  8. on 27 Jul 2007 at 8:42 amDavid Weinberger

    The home page’s top right box explains what the blog is, as does this page. I’m not sure how to make it clearer.

    I’ve added a note at the top of the right-hand box pointing out the tabs.

    Thanks for pointing out the problems.

  9. on 05 Nov 2007 at 9:48 pmSteven Harris

    I will be leading a book discussion of Everything Is Miscellaneous in Second Life, on November 8, 2007. Should be fun.

    http://librarydiary.wordpress.com/2007/11/05/second-life-is-miscellaneous/

  10. on 06 Nov 2007 at 2:51 pmeffing librarian

    reading the book now, and commenting on my page:
    “The arbitrary and random nature of the Internet becomes ordered through agreement. If we agree that something is important, it becomes important.
    I’ve been blogging for a few months and I’ve had visits from lots of people, but only a few come back. Even though I have a catchy name that gets lots of random search hits, only a few come back. So out of the chaos of the Internet, some order has formed. A few people have agreed that this site has some use. If I were to use math to link and analyze visits, I might calculate some social network created by this site. And if I could define this site, I could form a theory about that network and maybe even form some conclusion. But I would need lots more data. So I guess I need a catchier name.”

  11. on 13 Dec 2007 at 7:12 pmjfarr

    Re: “Now, what is the big point I’m missing that’s so obvious that I’m about to go D’oh! ?”

    http://www.everythingismiscellaneous.com/2006/11/30/free-the-space/

    The short answer is http://www.ietf.org/rfc/rfc2396.txt

    See especially section 2.4.3. Excluded US-ASCII Characters:

    “The space character is excluded because significant spaces may disappear and insignificant spaces may be introduced when URI are transcribed or typeset or subjected to the treatment of word-processing programs. Whitespace is also used to delimit URI in many contexts.”

    You have to remember that URIs are used in many contexts outside of HTML, and one of the (if not *the*) most important design considerations of the Uniform Resource Identifiers standard is “uniform”, as described in section 1.1:

    “Uniformity provides several benefits: it allows different types of resource identifiers to be used in the same context, even when the mechanisms used to access those resources may differ; it allows uniform semantic interpretation of common syntactic conventions across different types of resource identifiers; it allows introduction of new types of resource identifiers without interfering with the way that existing identifiers are used; and, it allows the identifiers to be reused in many different contexts, thus permitting new applications or protocols to leverage a pre-existing, large, and widely-used set of resource identifiers.”

    If you want to argue your case with the people who invented the internet, then by all means go ahead. ;)

  12. on 21 Dec 2007 at 9:40 amscott

    Darn, I lost your email address, David. I wanted to link you to this. (I am the lucky coworker.)

  13. [...] David Weinberger’s 2007 book “Everything is Miscellaneous“  talks in detail about “the New Order of Order”. [...]

  14. [...] the way we do categorization and assemble knowledge. The book is so popular, he has his own blog inviting comments on this [...]

  15. [...] Chalmers and David Bourget that tries to outline all the major topics in philosophy. Enjoy! (Via David Weinberger) [...]

  16. on 16 Nov 2008 at 8:22 amMirek Sopek

    When everything is Miscellaneous – what is left ?

    This is the third great book of David Weinberger that I was happy to read. Of course, the first, Cluetrain Manifesto (he co-authored it) and the second, Small Pieces Loosly Joined are great books that show the transforming power of Internet and its role in business and in social life.

    “Everything is miscellaneous” is a bit different. The book, with some small exceptions, focuses on knowledge and the fundamental transformation that the very concept of konwledge and science undergoes today. The book demonstrates the weakness of the old-style “categorized” and well-ordered knowledge originating in Aristotelian science (to who – of course – the credit of the knowledge creation must be given !!!). It was known since the dawn of civilisation that since and knowledge evolve through discourse of scholars and thinkers. Today everybody can be a scholar and thinker and publisher and mentor. The amazing fact is that, contrary to common sense – this does not degrade the level of discourse, but in fact increases it. See Wikipedia case (which author analyses deeply).

    From my perspective, the most interesting parts are those about classification systems, with the stress of “faceted classification” (e.g. colon classification system), that allows to build unlimited trees of knowledge and the notes about semantic web. Without pretending to know the reasons, Weinberger sheds some light on the failure or maybe rather, slow progress of Semantic Web. Surprisingly, the potential reasons are in the very nature of Semantic Web formulation, in RDF like mode, which does not fall far from Aristotelian, non-miscellaneous way of thinking.

    For me it is like David Weinberger was to tell us – it is the meaning that matters, not the rigid structure of knowledge.
    He tries to find the tools to represent meaning in the concept of “the third order of order”: ” … but only if we see past its mess to its meaning, for that is what the third order enables” and “The world won’t ever stay miscellaneous because we are together making it ours”

    However, in line with the message of the book – it is not easy to explain clearly and without some ambiguity, what are the tools to contain the meaning. Are they in folksonomies? are they in interaction and the way Wikipedia works ? We may fall short if we try to DEFINE them. Or maybe we need to wait until the next book of this great author …

    There are also very interesting thoughts about business today. See the quote: “In a truly miscellaneous world, a successful business owns nothing but what it wants to sell us. The rest is ours.”

  17. on 28 Nov 2008 at 5:13 amFlat and home

    Here i am as at home.

  18. [...] Everything Is Miscellaneous: The Power of the New Digital Disorderby David Weinberger (Heavy new thinking and should be required reading for all librarians) Please see the most awesome video below for a good idea of what it’s about: [...]

  19. [...] due in two weeks, full papers by March 1… BTW, David really gets metadata too: “Everything is miscellaneous” is required reading! Possibly related posts: (automatically generated)Open Contentquestions [...]

  20. on 08 Oct 2009 at 1:44 amDongjun Miao

    Thanks. A very inspiring book… full of philosophical flavor. Pity the Chinese version is not a good translation and I’m afraid somewhere misinterpreting the writer’s thought…

    Anyway, leaving blank for further thinking…

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  23. on 17 Nov 2010 at 5:52 pmPlanning Miscellaneousness @ FLIP

    [...] even more information? Weinberger also maintains a blog (of the same title) that discusses the topics covered in the book. The author also has his own [...]

  24. on 24 Apr 2011 at 8:28 pmA believer

    Dr Weinberger,

    I am college student currently reading your book “Everything is Miscellaneous” for a research paper I am writing. Although this is not what I expected to get from your book, I was most struck by your blatant attempts to disregard Christianity. Now of course I realize that the academic world has never been fond of religion, naturally those who aim to accumulate a distinguishing amount of knowledge in any particular area tend to place their faith in humans as the ultimate authority, but your point of view struck me in particular.

    I notice when you are discussing the Dewey Decimal System you mention several religions (or philosophies in the case of Buddhism), including Islam. You express dissatisfaction with the fact that “Islam shares its number” (47) with factions of their religion that they don’t claim as part of them. I’ll point out that the same is true for Christianity if Mormonism is included. This in itself is a small point, but I bring up the example because you seem to have some level of regard for any religion that is not Christianity.

    Another significant example worth mentioning are your several attempts to discredit Christianity as no longer relevant. You suggest that Christian beliefs have “fallen out of favor” (35) or state that “the Dewey Decimal Classification System has fallen wildly out of date, reflecting the small-town sensibility of a student at a tiny Christian college in he mid-1870′s.” (55)

    I don’t point these things out because they offend me, I point them out because you have demonstrated something significant: there is only a need to discredit the truth. No other religion offends people in the same way as Christianity. The only names people use to swear are that of God and his Son. And if you are now thinking of the common excuse, that Christians offend people because they speak out against other religions, then what is your excuse for being sympathetic to Islam which not only hates, but in many cases kills, people of other religions? I can answer that for you: it is because the Bible is absolute truth. There is only need to counterfeit the real thing.

    Agree or disagree. Post this or don’t. The truth is still the truth. Christ hung on a cross to pay the debt of your sins and mine whether we choose too accept him or not. I feel that I have an obligation to share this with you, because if you choose to stand before God someday unprepared, at least you will know it was a choice you made.

  25. [...] Di blog ne abbiamo fin’ora mappati 155…e grazie al vostro aiuto, cercheremo di aumentare il numero, consapevoli di voler contare l’impossibile e che Everything is miscellaneous. [...]

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  27. [...] Big To know van David Weinberger uit. Hoog tijd dus om samen te vatten waarom zijn vorige boek+blog Everything Is Miscellaneous een aanrader is voor iedereen die met informatie te maken heeft. Iedereen dus.  David Weinberger [...]

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  30. [...] Everything is Miscellaneous: The Power of the New Digital Disorder, by David Weinberger, , as the reviews on front and page say, is an important and fascinating book; it is also very theoretical. [...]

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