a name that can be named is not the constant name

It is interesting to see how hypertext has gone from being a grand possibility to a never-finished chore. --Ted Nelson

[the tao/dao that can be told . . .] [tai chi] [book of change] [book of sand] [end of the internet]

Friday, September 11, 2009


Finding It On the Internet

Finding It On the Internet (1994)
by Paul Gilster

Page 150

A Panoply of Diverse Information

The World Wide Web does not yet have its Veronica, the all-purpose search tool for Gopher that scours a database of collected resources to simplify the search process. The best word to describe the Web in its current form is "unwieldy," a gigantic bazaar of information, which is both fascinating and frustrating to use. Rather than making quick, targeted searches into the Web, you may find yourself drawn into extended sesions of exploration Here, then, are some intriguing way stations along the search path. They are presented to hint at the Web's riches.

The I Ching

In ancient times, people cast sticks upon the ground to provide the numerical references by which to query the I Ching, the Chinese book of prophecy. Like its counterpart in Delphi, the I Ching is an oracle of unusually cryptic language, one that requires reflection and, perhaps, the powers of the subconscious mind to untangle. The telecommunications age version of the I Ching is accessed via the Internet, as shown in Figure 6.13, where the Web is using a Telnet connection to bring you information.

I found this under the listing of information by subject on the Web's home page, under a Fortune Telling category that also includes links to electronic Tarot [p.151] cards and a cyberspace reading of your current biorhythms. Hint: those in the know tell me that when using the I Ching, you should place your hands upon the keyboard and concentrate on your current situation before pressing the RETURN key, which rolls the digital dice. As for understanding what the I Ching tells you you're on your own.

Figure 6.13

Running an electronic version of the I Ching through Telnet as mediated by the Web.

I-Ching [45/162]


The southwest furthers.
The Northeast does not further.
It furthers one to see the great man.
Perseverance brings good fortune.


Water on the mountain.
The image of Obstruction.
Thus the superior man turn his attention to himself
And molds his character.


Six at the beginning means:

Going leads to obstruction.
Coming meets with praise.

Six in the second lplace means:

The king's servant is beset by obstruction upon obstruction.
But it is not his own fault

Nine in the third place means:

Going leads to . . .

Back. Up. for more. Quit. or Help:

Gilster, Paul, (1949- )

Finding it on the internet : the essential guide to archie, Veronica, Gopher, WAIS, WWW (including Mosaic), and other search and browsing tools / New York : Wiley, c1994.

On page 135 (Table 6.1) Gilster provides an early version of the WWW Virtual Library that includes a Fortune-telling category that does not appear in later versions.

I-Ching is number [30] out of [96] entries.

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