First, there was Wikipedia Surfing. Now there’s Quora Surfing.
Wikipedia Surfing is where you start with one topic, see an interesting link, click on it, see another interesting link, click on that, and after a few hours, you’re on a completely different topic and full of interesting trivia. Quora Surfing is pretty much the same thing.
Some have questioned whether or not Quora will replace Wikipedia (on Quora, no less). I agree with the common sentiment: No. The two tools are distinctly different. But the wealth of fascinating information and ease of navigation are shared traits. It’s easy to get lost in either one as you follow the rabbits of information.
Quora’s buzz is largely due to the people on it. You could ask a question about Adobe Photoshop and get an answer from one of the designers of Adobe Photoshop. You could ask a question about venture capital and hear from one of Silicon Valley’s prominent venture capitalists themselves. This star-studded cast has given birth to a plethora of insights you can’t get elsewhere, though it’s decidedly biased towards the high-tech industries at the moment.
Fortunately, there are outliers. One particularly fascinating set of answers comes from Mark Hughes, a screenwriter. I’ve spent hours on his answers alone. Although I’m not a movie buff and don’t follow Hollywood closely, reading his answers has filled my brain with all sorts of interesting tidbits. Such as:
- Yes, Superman can die of old age someday, when our yellow sun dies.
- The original screenplay of Alien was very different than the final movie, and, apparently, pretty awful too.
- The new Star Trek movie is basically a reimagining of Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan
- Frank Miller, best known for his work with Batman, originally rose to fame by writing for Daredevil
- No, it is not possible to be a real-life Batman
Okay, perhaps that wasn’t of interest to you. Hughes also has a number of articles of interest for aspiring screenwriters. Each is a mini novel, a meaty fruitcake of information. Each is also a time sink that will lead to new drains in which your hours will drown. And if you don’t like those topics, there are a gazillion more. That, in a nutshell, is Quora Surfing.