The Web's Awake: An Introduction to the Field of Web Science and the Concept of Web Life
May 2007, Wiley-IEEE Press
The central thesis of The Web's Awake is that the phenomenal growth and complexity of the web is beginning to outstrip our capability to control it directly. Many have worked on the concept of emergent properties within highly complex systems, concentrating heavily on the underlying mechanics concerned. Few, however, have studied the fundamentals involved from a sociotechnical perspective. In short, the virtual anatomy of the Web remains relatively uninvestigated. The Web's Awake attempts to seriously explore this gap, citing a number of provocative, yet objective, similarities from studies relating to both real world and digital systems. It presents a collage of interlinked facts, assertions, and coincidences, which boldly point to a Web with powerful potential for life.