Node Mesh: Connecting The Dots – Part II

I updated my last post because I just found out that node isn’t the real Node Magazine – the latter being a fictional entity in Gibson’s upcoming Spook Country. Not surprisingly there is a real nodemagazine.com but it speculates that Assignment Zero is the “real” Node Magazine! I’ve also come across a UK Spook Country site with good 411 and the original blog entries(Part 1 , Part 2 , and Part 3) which have some additional 411 and pics not in the “featured” interview.

Many different uses of the term node exist but in the context of computer science, nodes can be considered to be elements of a mesh. It’s interesting to note that in 2003 when Pattern Recognition was released, Second Life was just being launched, and the phrase Web 2.0 was coined. Second Life has led to an expanded awareness and use of 3d mesh in everyday computing while Web 2.0 greatly increased the use of programming building blocks known as nodes. Almost everything you see on this or any other web page is made up of nodes but before Web 2.0 you got one small set of nodes for each web page. Now that sites are turning into the kinds of dynamic applications I’d been advocating since the mid-90’s(see also AJAX and the New Web), new nodes are constantly being created as you click. The set of nodes you download from page like Google Mail changes throughout the course of the day.

Spook Country may be one of the most unique book launches ever and a great kick-off to Pattern Recognition, the movie due next year. In the Amazon interview Gibson says

I don’t know if I’ll be able to make up an imaginary future in the same way. In the ’80s and ’90s–as strange as it may seem to say this–we had such luxury of stability. Things weren’t changing quite so quickly in the ’80s and ’90s. And when things are changing too quickly, as one of the characters in Pattern Recognition says, you don’t have any place to stand from which to imagine a very elaborate future.

No matter what your profession, you can probably relate to Gibson’s dilemma. Fortunately, there are ways out. If one is standing at the center of the meshverse, the future can be rhythmeered. More to come.

First they ignore you. Then they laugh at you. Then they fight you. Then you win.

Mahatma Ghandi

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1 Comment »

  1. […] Meshverse Journal, re: “People, Places, Things and Events Converging Electronically.” A recenty entry does a nice job of describing nodes: Many different uses of the term node exist but in the context […]

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