A CNN story on blogging becoming mainstream discusses briefly about one of its effects:
The way bloggers link and influence each other’s thinking could lead to a collective thought process, “a kind of hive brain,” said Chris Cleveland, who runs Dieselpoint, a Chicago maker of search software that recently worked with Blogger.com.
The hive brain is a science fiction theme most famously explored in the 1996 Star Trek movie “First Contact,” but Cleveland believes blogs can turn the concept into reality with the help of Google’s sifting skills.
Cleveland thinks Google might parlay its search engine expertise to develop technology that will analyze which blogs are getting the most links and pinpoint the most compelling material.
Some sites, such as daypop.com, use search engines to highlight the most popular blogs, but the indexes are limited.
If Google were to introduce a more effective search tool, the best bloggers might be easier to find, helping them emerge as influential trendsetters and shape public opinion — roles traditionally filled by mass media.
Cleveland describes this as “content Darwinism,” a process that will push the most compelling news and views to the blogging forefront.
On a separate note, an interesting point made by Dave Winer about the evolution of blogging: The evolution of blogs is following a path similar to other technologies, like the Internet itself. The early adopters are engineers and software developers, followed by librarians and lawyers and educators. Then comes business and then professionals – like doctors – and then government.”