Sunday, October 01, 2006

Whither the Topic

Generally a blogger faces two periodic challenges: what to blog and at what frequency. However, once one settled into a routine, the frequency often takes care of itself, a compromise between the blogger’s schedule and that of the blog commentators as evinced by their frequency of comments or hits. Of course, there are bloggers who blog at their own pace apparently oblivious to the hit frequency. These bloggers write at their own pleasure and do not crave nor care for external interaction. Their online musings become an extension of their thoughts without regard for feedback. But this group is likely a small minority since bloggers are social beings too who are just better at sharing what goes on in their inner sanctum through words, implicitly yearning for support and empathy, be they rants, gripes, memorable escapades/episodes, touching moments, and other perhaps life altering experiences.

The topic selection can range from the extemporaneous to well thought out responses much like those for the newspaper columns. Frequently, the title of the blog will give a hint as to the coverage while those spotting the name of a blogger (like this one) can ramble on anything under the sun, albeit shaped by personal experiences such as works, social circles, and the like.

A related issue is naming the heading of the day. Here is where creativity is at its best. Some are catchy, concise, and rival any of the mainstream publications, but perhaps a tad less inflammatory and sensational. Some play on words and popular names attached to a particular discipline of study. My most recent favorite is one entitled Hamitonian Support at, which chronicles the controversy generated by the August 28th article in the New Yorker called “Manifold Destiny” (by Sylvia Nasar and David Gruber).

You see, in classical mechanics, Hamiltonian mechanics describes a physical system invented in 1833 by William Rowan Hamilton where the forces are not dependent of the speed. In the contemporary context, the Hamitonian refers to Professor Richard Hamilton of the University of Columbia who has written an open latter ( in support of Dr. ST Yau who is right smack in the center of the controversy.

Along a similar path, we may then expect to see the likes of Newtonian Fall from Grace, Keynesian Ascent, A Russian Beautiful Mind, to advance a few. When it comes to naming conventions, a human mind knows no bounds. Continue visiting your favorite blogs (but seek out new ones too) and be amazed at the least expected nooks and corners in the blogsphere.


projectmanager said...

I agree with what you say, keep it up.
Eric Ko

Say Lee said...

Thanks for the encouragement, Eric.