Have you ever wonder whether you play favorites with your blog reading list ? Ever wonder if all your blogs had to be taken away except 3, which ones you would keep ?
I am asking because I recently stumbled upon a presentation at TED 2006 of Gladwell talking about pepsi, spaghetti sauce and happiness. The "pursuit of happiness" was the theme of the conference then. If you don't know, TED (Technology, Entertainment, Design) is is an annual conference held semi-annually in cities around the world that gather people from every boards "to exchange ideas of incalculable value". Its lectures cover a broad set of topics including science, arts, politics, global issues, architecture, music and more.
The next conference is in Tanzania. Harinjaka, a geeky-cool Malagasy blogger and soldier of many lost causes :D will attend the conference on a grant and will have the opportunity to share thoughts with many forward thinkers of this world.
Gladwell's presentation was an eye-opener. It answered the age old question: "what makes us happy and how can we determine it in a scientific manner." The talk is 15 min long so I will summarize it the best I can if you don't have the time to go through it all.
The main idea is that when we try to identify what product would be the best at giving us satisfaction, the answer is often not a single one. One phrase he uses is "We do not want Pepsi. We want pepsies".
As a consumers, voters or opinion sharers, we are often guilty of always trying to find the best product there is.
Heck, in this blog, I already have a dozen of posts where I make list of my favorite songs, my favorite natural wonders or my favorite Malagasy historical figures :D.
And now I am again guilty of trying to figure out whether I have my favorite blogs. Gladwell answered that for me: I don't. I suspected it all along but did not know why, it's all clear now.
What I do have, are clusters of interest.
From the presentation, the data from the survey on consumer's preference WRT the percentage of sugar in Pepsi showed that there is no clear preference. However, obvious trend came out when options were offered: some wanted less sugar but with zest, other less caffeine and some just wanted plain 10% sugar Pepsi. We don't to rank our preferences, we want them grouped in certain way.
So this is how I like the blogs I read:
I like them to make me pause and thinkor explain concept in a simple manner.
I like them with stories filled with emotions, may it be outrage, irony or joy.
I like them to take a stand but not to take themselves too seriously;
I like them playful, humouristic with cute silly pictures and deadpan one-liners;
I'd like them talking about their home, wherever that may be;
I'd like them to help me (re)discover new sounds, new places and new ideas.
But that's just me, so what does your cluster look like ? :D
And to all the mothers or mother to be, Happy Mother's day ! (for those of you in this corner of the world).