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Around the World · 2 January 2009

My words have traveled around the world to places that I have never even heard of. As a matter of fact, I just found out that there is a place called the Cocos (Keeling) Islands. I did not know that a country with a parenthetical name even existed let alone where it is. Which is not to say that I know much about geography. But maybe it does say a little about the power of words and the internet.


I use an application called Textpattern (textpattern.com) to manage my web content. It is a pretty easy program to use and I like the way that it not only keeps track of what I post but how and when I post it. One nice feature that it has is a log of what computers visited my website.


I periodically check the log of my websites to see who is reading what I write. No, I can not tell who exactly is reading, but I can see what website referred them to mine and a little information about the host computer of the Internet Service Provider (ISP). This host computer could be called the host of the computer that is visiting my website, but that is too confusing so I will just call it the host. One of the things that I look at is the country of the host computer.


Since most host computers show their country with the last two letters in their web address, I can see where my words are being read. People from Japan, Belgium, France, Canada, and Brazil have read my writing. So far, people in over 30 countries have read my writing. Or at least visited my website. I do not even know where some of these places are. Which brings us back to Cocos (Keeling) Islands.


I have heard of Estonia, the Czech Republic, Guyana, and Trinidad and Tobago, but I doubt that I could locate them all on the map without some help from my kids. (Sometimes I wonder if I could even locate cities in my own state.) Then again, given what has happened since I have been an adult, perhaps I could be forgiven for not knowing where Slovakia is. After all, it did not exist with its current name when I was a kid.


With the advent of the computer and the internet, I suppose it is inexcusable that I not know where my website visitors live. After all, the world has become smaller because of the wonderful inventions created in and because of the information age we live in. We can talk with people around the world. We have instant communication. People like me can share their thoughts with the world. Regardless of their proper use of grammar, spelling, or other writing conventions. Or whether they have anything to say.


I love the internet and what it has done for me as a writer. I can post my musings for all the world to see. Visitors from Argentina, Germany, Mexico, Romania, and Singapore see my website and hopefully stop to read. I may not really know where Moldova is. But I can say that I the Cocos (Keeling) Islands are in the Indian Ocean. Wherever that is.

© 2009 Michael T. Miyoshi

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