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July 2, 2000

Gifts from the Edge

Zenzibar went online for the first time on July 1, 1999 with about 300 hand-picked sites for its directory and not much else. I remember being so excited when our first listing on a search engine went up and our traffic went from 3 or 4 friends checking out the site to 20 visitors per day. A lot has happened since then

As of Zenzibarís first birthday we have over 2500 sites listed in out directory, we have added news features, a reader poll, featured sites of the week, alternative events and, this month, will be adding a discussion groups feature called the Zenzibar Salon. We are now getting over 12,000 visitors per month and our traffic is still growing. We are excited about what can happen by Zenzibarís second birthday!

The vision for the future of Zenzibar is based on the idea that the really great ideas and concepts that influence our society have come from the fringe of culture. Whenever a person decides to leave the mainstream and explore the edge he/she has a chance to find and bring back a great gift for all of us.

We all accept now that the world is round and not the center of the solar system, but, years ago, those visionary scientists who posited these ideas were laughed at and even imprisoned. Not 50 years ago, chiropractic was a fringe idea, ridiculed by the medical mainstream. Today, chiropractic is even covered by insurance Ė a sure sign of entering the mainstream. Naturopathy, hypnotherapy, and acupressure are all practices on the verge of acceptance by mainstream health practitioners and they were all the province of "weirdos" until the last few years. Thatís why Zenzibar exists.

Not every idea put forth by the sites listed in Zenzibar will prove to be valuable but some of the ideas out there that seem outlandish now will become the norm. I guarantee it! Zenzibar hopes to be an alternative community center of sorts, helping people to find these resources, meet like-minded people, and feel themselves a part of the community exploring the edges of culture. I want the virtual atmosphere at Zenzibar to be one of bold exploration as well as a home for critical thinking and discourse. The Zenzibar Salon, which should be online in the next few weeks, is a very important part of Zenzibarís future.

Itís an exciting time we are living in. Technology is presenting challenges to the dominant world-view so quickly that things seem to be in constant flux. This is a good thing. When the world is in flux, thatís when changes can happen more easily. We are hoping to provide a base or reference point from which to launch forays beyond the edge of culture. We hope to offer enough resources to give the visitors to Zenzibar a chance to get an overview of the sources of the ideas that will shape our future.

Thank you all very much for visiting and using Zenzibar. We hope you have found some value here. We are always open to suggestions and intend to stay receptive to the new and exciting ideas cropping up all over the world. We have come a long way in just one year and, hopefully, we have a lot of years ahead of us. Letís keep exploring together and, with boldness and luck, we will bring back gifts from the edge that will help to create a new world.

Sincerely,

Royce Carlson - First Wizard Deluxe at Zenzibar.com

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