Arbor Update

Ann Arbor Area Community News

Absolute Michigan advocates "think globally, surf locally"

1. February 2005 • Murph
Email this article

On 1 January, Leelanau Communications, Inc. launched Absolute Michigan, intended to be “the most useful and entertaining guide to the State of Michigan on the Internet.” The front page is merely a domain-squatter style links directory, but the daily Five Things You Need to Know blog is interesting for its eclecticness.

Link from Ypsidixit, who found herself linked from said blog.

(Leelanau location guide for out-of-staters: make a mitten and look at the tip of your pinky finger.)



  1. “domain-squatter style links directory”? Well, I guess you’re right. We’re hoping to extend the eclectiness of the blog throughout the site, but as someone remarked to me “Michigan’s a big damn place”.

    Thanks for the nod.
       —farlane    Feb. 5 '05 - 12:34PM    #
  2. Always happy to see other blog-style activity in the region. Personally, I think that the list-o-links style page for anything larger than a list of the blogs one reads daily went out of style around the time Google started up. Not that I think your directory is bad, mind you—but I think that by the time you grow to be anything close to a comprehensive guide to Michigan webpages, the current format will have long since ceased to be navigable.

    “Five Things”, though, is interesting for its format. You don’t claim that it is all that one might need to do, and give exactly enough information on each Thing for the reader to understand what you’re saying.
       —Murph    Feb. 5 '05 - 06:24PM    #
  3. Murph, thanks for the feedback.

    One of the problems (as I see it) with Google is that no matter how sharp their algorythms are, they remain automated processes that can’t tell the difference between actual information resources and things that are cleverly crafted to mimic information resources. Humans have a much better ability to make such distinctions.

    Because of this, Google works very well if you know what you want to see or do and where it is and less perfectly when you don’t. Google Local is an interesting and potentially powerful tool, but it doesn’t give you a complete picture. Our hope is that the combination of links and articles will provide an alternative way to explore Michigan.

    I completely agree that the current navigation format will be useless after several thousand more links. We have created a “Regions” function that allows you to focus on one of five regions and the county & city searches will be refined as the number of links climbs.
       —farlane    Feb. 6 '05 - 02:09PM    #