29 October 2008


above is my personal term for sites which you can visit, input info as you please, and save the results for either public or private viewing. so far i've limited myself to four:

~ google earth. this surfable, 3D depiction of the globe is nothing short of fabulous. you can vary the magnification down to where you can see individual buildings, you can actually slant the view to see the height and dimensions of places as varied as manhattan and the grand canyon, and (here's where the vanity part comes in) you can tag personally significant locations -- places lived, events, whatever. it's a lot of fun.

~ google maps. similar to the above, but 2D, and with certain features like roads and streets in more detail.

~ facebook. yes, the one, the only, the ubiquitous, the paradigm of vanity sites. you get to reveal as much or as little of yourself as you wish to anyone who views your profile -- disgusting habits, tastes in movies and books, and oh yes, the names and faces of those who consent to be listed as your "friends". guilt by association. i'm still not sure of the value of this site, since there's little actual, meaningful communication going on, mostly preening. maybe i'm missing something.

~ my barnes & noble. i haven't opened this up to public view yet. it's simply a fun compendium of my favorite books and authors, growing all the time. they may be forced to evict me, as during my lifetime i've read thousands of books. one can also include movies, but there's no convenient way i've found to partition the two categories.

~ well, in fairness i should include match.com and eharmony. you create your own profile, including those traits and interests which you hope a reader will find appealing. perhaps the ultimate vanity. or perhaps just a new version of the age-old dance of courtship.

my chicago buddy bill notes in his blog http://ciexinc.com/blogs/daily/ that these endeavors can be a serious time suck (not his words). extremely true. beware.

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