Being of the Usenet generation, I have a tendency to see the modern blogosphere as its natural heir. It inherits the best aspects; self-organising communities, wide spread of technical and other interests, threaded discussion, each anchored to a parent article, and so on. It also avoids the worst aspects; the flame-wars, the incessant trolling, the spam, the… ohwait.
I do but jest, well, mostly. In practice, blogosphere turf norms are better accepted than they were on the alt.* hierarchy, and there is a really big improvement in this technology, which is user control. On Usenet, you found a group, and if you wanted to know about that group, you got whatever was going by. By moving the determinant to author rather than (loosely) subject matter, the user gains a great deal of flexibility in filtering Teh Internetz into a shape they can both manage and gain from. But that carries its own risk of echo-chamber reading habits.
Source discovery is also a pleasingly p2p process, as we do tend to find authors because someone we already read linked them. To which end, some of the people I read daily that you might be interested in, sorted by sphere of expertise.
Jonathan Bernstein: excellent observer, happy baseball fan.
Ezra Klein: and a team of other wonks.
Andrew Sullivan: an honest religious conservative (also an endangered species!)
Dan Drezner: geopolitics geek.
Life in the Past
Edge of the West: Ari Kelman and company, a history group-blog.
Living in the Future
I suspect that’ll do for now.