I got a flyer in the mail today that had contained an infomerical about a product called Liquid Granite. The story was too good to be true - the look of granite for a fraction of the cost and you would not even need to gut your existing counter-tops. I was intrigued enough to do some research online and came across IdeaConnection. I quickly moved on from Liquid Granite to more fascinating things. I must have spent an hour reading about inventions I had no idea existed.
This is how the internet experience used to be when I first got online in the mid 90s. There were no filters or aggregrators - you started somewhere and ended up in entirely unexpected places - the journey was fun and unpredictable. You could waste an inordinate amount of time looking for information and digress all too easily. These days, most of my reading online is via Google Reader - the reading list is long and diverse but there is still a corralled feel to it. I get what I want in one place and related information is already curated for me - there is little need to "browse" and therefore fewer opportunities to happen by something outside the walled garden. Jumping from from a printed flyer to a related online source and wandering without direction or constraint felt strangely exhilarating - I have not done this in a long time.