The road less traveled — my particular notion of gathered culture, perspective and information — Eclectic meanderings of nonsense and spiritual musings.
Blogs

Where I get some of my awesome posting goodness:

31. Ranker for Blogs
An opportunity for an unintentional epigraph for an age gone missing.


30. Starbucks Gossip
Romenesko’s other other blog, Starbucks Gossip is the kind of idea you wish more people would rip off. A gossip blog for fans and employees alike, the site has been on the forefront of such controversies as the ghetto latte and the tipping debate. (See also: Mini-Microsoft.)

29. TV Squad
Blogging about tv sounds hard — you’re always a day late, yet you’re always a spoiler. This surprisingly good Weblogs Inc. blog finds the right balance between last night’s TiVo and tomorrow’s buzzed show. (See also: Television Without Pity & Tuned In.)

28. Ballardian
Sorry, this isn’t actually J.G. Ballard’s blog. As possibly the only science fiction writer who merits the adjectival form, Ballard is synonymous with technology, body enhancement, organic architecture, dystopia, car crashes, and other generally weird stuff. This blog is about those things, sorta. (See also: William Gibson’s Blog & Bruce Sterling’s Blog & City of Sound.)

27. T-Shirt Critic
I’ve got this theory that the t-shirt is becoming its own legitimate form of media — informative yet dispensable. Probably the most frequent email query I get is “where do you get all those t-shirt links?” The answer is all over the freaking place — but this site is one of the best. (See also: Preshrunk & iloveyourtshirt.)

26. Pruned
Ostensibly, this is a blog about landscape architecture, but it actually illustrates how any discipline has complexity and hybridity behind it, usually by gathering all sorts of random pieces of visual culture. (See also: BLDG BLOG & Things Magazine.)

25. Ypulse
You can count the number of people making a living by blogging on a couple of hands, but be sure to add a digit for Anastasia. If you think you know what teenagers are talking about today, you may reconsider after reading this blog, which tracks everything that the kids (Generation Y) are into. (See also: Agenda Inc.)

24. Eyeteeth & Offcenter
Through some bad twist of misfortune, I never met the multi-talented Paul Schmelzer when I lived in Minneapolis. But I’ve been collecting all the marvellous little spores he leaves behind on various sites around the interweb, including these two. (See also: Greg.org.)

23. We Make Money Not Art
The international talent on this blog covers topics in the digital arts: social media, electronic design, wearable computing, etc. (See also: Design Observer & reBlog.)

22. Dethroner
Not that you care, but 2006 was a crummy year for the lad magazine. Could it be that the social internet is invading dude-ness too? This one-man site (from Joel Johnson, former Gizmodo editor, recently interviewed by Matt Haughey) is a good example of what one person can do in a niche topic. (See also: Daddy Types.)

21. Cute Overload
Yes, hipster, I know — you, your sister, and your mom have seen Cute Overload. But have you bookmarked it? Have you returned to it every day just for some cheery bunnies? You have not truly experienced Cute Overload until it has become a ritual. I dare you. (See also: Flickr: Interestingness.)

20. IFC TV
Picking the best film blog is difficult. Luckily, picking the best one you perhaps aren’t reading is easy! This link-heavy blog is the perfect mix of news and views on film culture.

19. Journerdism
From the esteemed tradition of Waxy and Snark Market comes Journerdism, a link blog from Floridan new media journalist, Will Sullivan. (See also: Magnetbox & PaidContent & Innovation in Colllege Media.)

18. Metafilter
Joke, right? No, not really, because I bet everyone reading this post has at one time or another given up on Metafilter. And unlike the time you gave up on Slashdot, you eventually came back to Metafilter. (See also: Ask.Metafilter, the real reason this site deserves to be here.)

17. videos.antville.org
You’re going to see a huge surge of video link blogs this year, but this one has always stood above the others for good community contributions of quality music videos. (See also: ClipTip & Digg: Music Videos.)

16. Marmaduke Explained
There’s only one way to make Marmaduke funny: attempt to explain why Mamaduke is funny. Brilliant. (See also: Silent Penultimate Panel.)

15. Josh Spear
Cool Hunting and The Cool Hunter are, well, cool. But they tend to track international trends that seldom seem to intersect with your life. Josh Spear’s cool hunting includes stuff you might actually be able to afford getting your hands on. (See also: NotCot.org.)

14. Data Mining
Yawn, right? Nuh-uh. Everything that’s happening today in areas around buzz tracking, social media, geocoding, data visualization, and countless other subjects is tracked on this blog, where I consistently discover new ideas. (See also: Blog Pulse & Micro Persuasion.)

13. Make Magazine
Even though this blog is arguably pretty popular, I’m including the work of the indefatigable Phillip Torrone because the trend of life hacking and productivity really started to emerge this year. Make’s philosophy is simple: anything can be DIY if you just figure out how to hack it. (See also: Lifehacker & 43 Folders & Life Clever.)

12. 3 Quarks Daily
3 Quarks Daily sets the paradigm for what a good personal blog should be: eclectic but still thematic, learned but not boring, writerly but not wordy. (See also: Snark Market & wood s lot.)

11. Screens
I’ve had a boyish crush on Virginia Heffernan‘s writing since her days as Slate’s tv columnist. This year, she started this peculiar little blog for the New York Times, covering the cultural side of the internet video industry before anyone realized there was such a thing. She was the first mainstream media writer to snag lonelygirl15 as a storyline (which I — still boyishly — think she first saw here), writing in a cozy vernacular that you were surprised in the old gray lady. (See also: Lost Remote & Carpetbagger.)

10. BuzzFeed
It might be too early to judge this recently-launched human+computer buzz hybrid, but so far the meme detector has caught Hipster-on-Hipster Hatred, Evil Hippies Ruining Stuff, and Racist Jokes as strangely recurrent cultural themes. (See also: Hype Machine & Blogebrity.)

9. Pulse Laser
Matt Webb is the kind of nerd that all nerds aspire to be. His amazing presentations mix science fiction, Coke commercials, and brain chemistry in ways natural only to polymaths. With his partner Jack Schulze, Webb has worked on such projects as redefining news with BBC, understanding phone personalization with Nokia, and writing about mind hacks for O’Reilly. Impressive work, but this blog tracks their random ideas, such as the social letterbox or a collection of robot arms. (See also: Ratchet Up & v-2.org.)

8. Subtraction
An editor from The Atlantic who was doing a story on buzz-building recently contacted me about finding the source of a meme he saw on Fimoculous. He asked where I got it, and I said Subtraction, to which he replied, “that’s what everyone else said too.” A blogger’s blogger, Khoi Vinh is the new design director at the NYTimes.com, which might sound high-brow, but his personal site has the quality you most desire from a blogger: curiosity. (See also: Anil Dash.)

7. Pop Candy
I’m as surprised as you that a USA Today blog makes this list. Beyond the cute Chuck Taylors in her pic, what makes Whitney Matheson better than the slew of other pop culture blogs out there? Simple: while everyone else is there to out-snark and out-upskirt-shot each other, Whitney seems to actually like popular culture. (See also: Stereogum & Amy’s Robot.)

6. Future of the Book
Ostensibly about exploring the shift from the printed page to the networked screen, Future of the Book stumbles across a variety of new ideas along the way, such as creating a wikibook on gaming. Although occasionally windy, Future of the Books is on the precipice of something big. (See also: Read/Write Web & Smart Mobs.)

5. Corpus Obscurum
It’s an inspired idea: track the obits of those whose accomplishments vastly exceeded their fame. So you get the last boxer to fight Muhammad Ali, the animator of Fred Flintstone, the tuba player from the Jaws theme, the first physician convicted of illegally performing an abortion in a hospital, and many, many more. (See also: Blog of Death.)

4. Information Aesthetics
I suspect we need a chart to explain why this blog is so great, because just saying “this blog tracks instances of data visualization” sounds like it could be a weapon to kill terrorists with boredom. But this site is essential reading for anyone interested in the ways that engineers and designers turn the messy world into a clear visual representation. (See also: Visual Complexity & xBlog.)

3. Google Operating System
Like William Gibson famously decreeing that the future is already here but not evenly distributed, this blog’s name alludes to the ongoing rumor that Google is starting its own operating system, which is essentially already here but we don’t even realize it. The site offers “news and tips about Google” (hey, they put ads on their maps; wow, only a handful of sites have a 10 PageRank; huh, you can mute threads in Gmail), but the best posts have top form theorizing on what the future holds for the online operating system. (See also: Google Blogoscoped & John Battelle’s SearchBlog.)

2. History of the Button
A blog about the history of buttons? Yes! A blog about the history of buttons! Finally, someone has come along to try to say something sensible about this year’s wretched Adam Sandler movie Click, to trace the history of game show buzzers and buttons, and to analyze Push! The! Button! cries in Lost. Next thing you know, you’re seeing buttons everywhere. It’s a button nation. (See also: Boxes and Arrows & Signal vs. Noise.)

1. Indexed
Is this seriously the best blog on this list? Who knows — but it’s a minor form of genius. (See also: McSweeney’s Lists & 10,000 Reasons & Gaping Void.)

graphic
Slide Left Slide Right
Sign up for our Newsletter

Enter your email and stay on top of things:


Subscribe!