I made my first post at New Savanna on April 14, 2010. Before that I’d been blogging at The Valve, a now defunct group blog centered on literature. I made my first post there, I believe, in December of 2005, but I’d been active on the web in one way or another for over a decade before that. Back in 1994 Bill Berry and I created Meanderings – actually, Bill created it, I just joined in – and I’d been on CompuServe before that. I tell the story about my digital travels in this working paper: Personal Observations on Entering an Age of Computing Machines, Working Paper, November 2015. It started life as a series of blog posts here, as most of my working papers do.
Anyhow, it’s time for another accounting. First I look at the overall total, then I make some observations about the top 10 posts, and I conclude with some remarks of a more personal nature.
Overall page visits and top 10
I still haven’t got the foggiest idea what was going on in 2017. Maybe Russian bots, by why would they spend a year cruising New Savanna? The recent spike looks interesting. I have no idea where that will go. Top posts
Here at the ten most popular posts. Those numbers are not accurate, however. If you go through the numbers post by post you’ll see higher numbers. And I’m pretty sure there are at least one or two posts that should be in this list by aren’t. But I’m not going to try tracking them down. This will do my present purposes.
What’s interesting about the behavior of individual posts is that a number of them show large spikes at some point. With one exception, I do not know what’s going on.
Posted September 2010.
This has been the most popular post since it went up. There’s no mystery about that. Ninja Scroll is a popular anime and the post is about sex. But what’s that spike at about January of 2019?
Posted October 2010.
This has been popular for a long time as well, though it took two years to gain traction. No surprise here either. It’s about a very popular sequence from a popular Disney cartoon, albeit one that’s eight decades century old. Think about that.
Posted November 16, 2015.
This one pleases me a great deal. Why? Because it’s Miyazaki. I posted it near the end of 2015 and, as I recall, it just coasted along. Then for some reason it spiked early in 2020, and then tapered off at midyear.
4. Two Rings in Fantasia: Nutcracker and Apprentice
Posted December 28, 2010.
This one saw a lot of action in its first two years and then tapered off. I haven’t got the foggiest idea why
Posted July 26, 2018.
6000 Posts at NS
Hayao Miyazaki's concept art for My Neighbor Totoro pic.twitter.com/zVWuexvgxg— 41 Strange (@41Strange) July 13, 2019
One other thing. I don't know what I've got here. Sure, I know roughly what I've got, and I've got that ridiculous tag cloud over there to the right. But when I go roaming through the archives I find things I've forgotten about.
It's like that, no?
2500 Posts: What Have I Been Doing at New Savanna?
But what’s it all about? What would I tell someone who landed on New Savanna for the first time?
- The Living Cosmos (14 Sept 2012): It makes more sense to conceive of the cosmos, all of it, as a living being rather than a pile of dead matter. If dead matter, then how come life? But, if life, then there’s not problem, is there?
- The Abundance Principle and the Fourth Arena (16 December 2012): This living universe started with Matter, from which Life emerged, and Culture from Life. This principle of emergence we can call the Abundance Principle, after Paul Feyerabend. We are on the cusp of emerging another Realm, for which I have no name other than The Fourth Arena.
- Cultural Evolution: including The Evolution of Human Culture: Some Notes Prepared for the National Humanities Center, Version 2 (2010), where I use music as my major source of examples; Cultural Evolution: A Vehicle for Cooperative Interaction between the Sciences and the Humanities, and Cultural Evolution, Memes, and the Trouble with Dan Dennett (2013), in which I reach a conception of the meme that’s quite different from Dan Dennett’s, but which might actually be useful. Note that these links lead to PDF’s at my SSRN (Social Science Research Network) site, but they started out here.
- Major analytical and descriptive work, where I look at specific texts in considerable detail through a series of posts: Disney’s Fantasia and Dumbo, Porky in Wackyland, The Greatest Man in Siam, films of Miyazaki, Nina Paley's Sita Sings the Blues (all cartoons), Apocalypse Now, Gojira (live action films); Heart of Darkness (novella). I also have a number of posts specifically concerned with the problems of description and with describing ring-composition.
- Literature and Literary Criticism. Let’s stick Lévi-Strauss here as well, myth logic, and Franco Moretti. How about digital humanities and Alan Liu?
- Coupling and Synchrony: These posts are about how humans cohere in social groups by synchronizing the timing of their neural activity during interaction. Many of these posts concern music, for example, this one on clapping and group intentionality, this one on bell rhythms, and this one on spirits.
- Pluralism: These posts represent my encounter with object-oriented ontology: Bennett, Bryant, Harman, Latour, Morton. This intersects with my interest in cognitive science though ontological cognition: how the mind conceptualizes different kinds of things.
- The newer psychologies: cognitive science, cognition, perception, computation, brain, neuroscience, linguistics.
- Behavioral Mode, very important. This is where the mind meets the body meets society. Peak experience. Sexuality. Love. Psychoanalysis.