The Theory And Practice Of The Internet

from the putting-it-all-together dept

There are still a lot of business people trying to “make sense” of what the internet actually means for them, and they’re desperately grasping at random theories to explain why things happen the way they do online. While theories are often no more than figments of people’s imagination, sometimes they can be useful in understanding larger events. Newsweek takes a look at three books that they believe present useful theories about why the internet acts the way it does. Two of them we’ve discussed here previously: Howard Rheingold’s Smart Mobs and David Weinberger’s Small Pieces Loosely Joined. The last one I hadn’t heard of, but sounds like a good read. It’s Albert-Laszlo Barabasi’s Linked: The New Science of Networks, which gets more into the scientific explanations of network theory (but, according to Newsweek, is still quite readable by non-technical folks). Notice that all three books are focused on the idea of links and communities, rather than “business models”. It’s good to see more books that are focused on actually understanding the fundamental reasons why the internet does what it does – rather than ways to just cash in on those facts.

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