Most of us are aware that our web experience is somewhat customized by our browsing history, social graph and other factors. But this sort of information-tailoring takes place on a much more sophisticated, deeper and far-reaching level than we dare suspect. (Did you know that Google takes into account 57 individual data points before serving you the results you searched for?) That’s exactly what Eli Pariser, founder of public policy advocacy groupMoveOn.org, explores in his fascinating and, depending on where you fall on the privacy spectrum, potentially unsettling new book
This is a crucial book in order to comprehend the shift that is taking place in cyberspace and real life. Shirky argues, for example, that 'the old view of online as a seperate space, cyberspace, apart from the real world, was an accident of history. Back when the online population was tiny, most of the people you knew in your daily life weren't part of that population. Now that computers and increasingly computers like phones have been broadly adopted, the whole notion of cyberspace is fading. Our social media tools aren't alternative to real life, they are part of it. In particular, they are increasingly the coordinating tools for events in the physical world".