The New Digital Garden

Do you crave an online space where you can express your boundless self? A place that unites your most diverse interests? That reflects your inner world through mixed media and visual structure rather than the linearity of words on pages?

Then you need a digital garden. And you need Here.fm.

a view of my digital garden in Here.fm, which uses the lemon tree from the Simpsons as a curation hub or legend for navigation
welcome to Here.fm

contents


until the multiverse

a user in the multiverse, from the New Yorker website
this kid escapes the squalor of reality

Epic Games has raised $1B to build a multiverse. It’s likely to be more of a multiworld or multi-earth, since – and I’m guessing here – they won’t be including the sombrero galaxy. But prove me wrong, Epic!

While I wait for that build, I’m growing my own digital garden in Here.fm. It’s more child’s bedroom than universe, and it’s my new favourite zen corner of the internet.


on digital gardens

If you’re new to the idea of digital gardens, they’re like artificial, digital ecosystems. They’re typically word-based: notes, thoughts, ideas, articles, references, links: all in various stages of evolution.

Now you may be thinking, he’s describing a blog. It’s a pretentious way to view a blog. Why the need to get esoteric?

Well a blog is a collection of finished pieces of writing that are, for the most part, distinct and static. A blog post may contain links to other posts, and even to ideas within other posts, but it rarely changes much over time.

In contrast, the digital garden is dynamic by design. Its indivisible unit – the idea – grows over time, is understood and made more valuable in and by its relationship with neighbours.

Maggie Appleton says digital gardens are “collections of evolving ideas… inherently exploratory,”
in which
“notes are published as half-finished thoughts that will grow and evolve over time.”

Andy Matuschak’s Digital Garden, each link opening a new page

Notes are linked so that a reader can easily move back and forth between pieces of content. Digital gardens encourage rabbit-holing.

What’s the point of a digital garden?

  • on the importance of working in public
  • on the unnecessary hoarding of work
  • on the ugliness of polished surfaces

Think of its physical counterpart.

comparison to a museum


from page to room

Until I get my words together (and after that as well), check out Maggie Appleton’s post on the history and ethos of the digital garden.

…this has got to be the draftiest (draughtiest?) draft of all time…


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