Converging on truth

Converging on the truth

Niels Berglund was disturbed that I praised an Ars Technica article which Peter Drayton then had to rebut. I admit I winced when I saw Peter's rebuttal. But the entire process as it has flowed through the blog world and back to the authors is one that I find exhilarating.

In retrospect, I was too quick on the Post & Publish trigger in that case. Two reasons. First, I've found Ars Technica's stuff in general to be good, and underappreciated. Second, I found the piece to be a good summation of the .NET technology, better than a lot of what's been done in the mainstream press.

What I didn't do, quite honestly, was read the piece as thoroughly as I should have to justify my comments about it. And had I done so, again quite candidly, I wouldn't have found many of the things Peter did, because we operate at different levels.

So what's exhilarating about all this? Peter wouldn't have seen the piece had it not passed my filters, which says that it had value at a certain level. This prompted Peter to take a look, and when it didn't pass his filters, he said why, adding further value.

There are levels of truth. Marketing literature can be true, at one level. Journalism can be true at another. Technical literature can be at yet another. All too often these levels operate in isolation, never connecting. When awareness flows across levels, a richer and more nuanced version of the truth can emerge.

I've acknowledged what Peter and Niels have said. The Ars Technica authors haven't, yet, but I suspect that not doing so will become less and less feasible -- not just for them, I mean, but for everyone. Web communication wants to make things transparent. Some people find that scary. I find it exciting.

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