Monday, February 28

Mesh or Spiral

A Web Of Ones Own Weaving
Following a lead from 'somewhere' I landed back at Stephen's blog reading his post "The Blogosphere is a mesh"  Mark Berthelemy had previously challenged Stephen's notion of the network as being more accurately described as a mesh rather than hub and spokes arrangement, by his request for substantiation:
......I'd be very interested to know the evidence for that statement......
Stephen responded- " My evidence is that this is what I see, and that if you looked at it from the same perspective, you would see it too.
Increasingly I've experienced the frustration of being asked to provide evidence for my beliefs, and the affirmation of my belief that it is ALL about perspectives, not realities or absolutes. How liberating to have the confidence to simply say - I've seen it, I believe it, take it or leave it. I'm very much a 'personal experience' advocate. It matters not the opinions of a litany of opponents or challengers if life experience has taught an alternate lesson. Trust in the gut feeling. An example - The Edublogs Awards - a little like the 'Idol' singing competition. Whoever has the most vote wins. However the voting system is flawed. Votes can be bought and sought. Quantity over quality wins. One can almost hear the voices emanating from the monitor: " Pick me, pick me, pick me " as newsletters hot off the press request parents to " vote for Mr. B's. ...... blog ". A win is not only a win for Mr. B, but for the school executive, the parents, the student body, and the educational system. High stakes.  Personally I was disappointed with many of the winners, but then again I'm personally disappointed that a democratic voting system has provided my country with a Prime Minister who speaks like a wharfie and lies like a trooper.

The analogy of a spider's web suits my current understanding of a network. Gray Pilgrim's explanation of the various types of webs and spiders serendipitously appeared while I was pondering the reading above. Each network is different as each group is different according to the interactions between the members and their driving motivation, just as each spider web is different according to the spider's purpose.

Pilgrim claims the webs can be broadly classified into five types, other than the common cobwebs. He identifies them as being:
  • Spiral orb webs
  • Funnel Webs
  • Tubular Webs
  • Sheet Webs
  • Tent Webs
He further explains that the different types of spider silk serves different purposes:
  • Building the main framework of a web to catch prey
  • Building the spokes of the web
  • Wrapping and packing fresh caught prey for later consumption
  • Throwing a web strand in the air and ballooning their way out with a drift.
What is the purpose of your network and how is it engineered ?

Do I even have a network, or do I have 'fellow travellers' who accompany me on the journey, resting at their own signposts, invigorated by new insights and clues for unmeshing the puzzle that is life, armed with personal insights and varying levels of enthusiasm.

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