‘Cities are slow computers’

…is today’s thought from the day from Matt Jones, talking very interestingly at the Interesting Conference on Saturday – suspect much online content will be going up about it over the next week or so, starting with Charlie Frith here (with links to other attendees) – and thanks to Russell for sorting it out! Not strictly a literary event, so a bit out of the normal subject matter here, but very, very thought provoking indeed.

Anyway, more on that later… most immediate impression, in its blend of diversity and obsession, acute professionalism and inspired amateurism, it felt much like a physical manifestation of a really interesting (and slightly random) afternoon’s net surfing.

Which also made me realise that the web is built round a geography of interest – unlike the real world, when you’re online what’s closest to you is what obsesses you the most. And again, Saturday’s conference was very much a literalisation of that.

And today I’m writing in telegraphese! In half an hour or so, I’m off to Yorkshire for a week’s writing workshop with Liz Williams and Graham Joyce. Should be very enjoyable, and hopefully will also launch a very substantial sharpening up of the novel. Not sure if I’ll have any web access over the next few days, so – until next Monday – farewell!

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