vegetable seedling with roots showing

Your website is not alive but it does act like a living organism, or a series of living organisms, in a sustainable garden.

The anatomy of an sustainable website is similar to a diagram of a regular website, but more functional overall. To explain I will break down each part into a more easily understandable step with pictures.

Websites Are Lists

A website is essentially a list of files. You can see how it looks by clicking on the finder window like in the example below. This is an example website with three hypothetical files and their corresponding subfolders. A real website contains much more information, but this simplified one is easier to understand.

Chart A: Example Website

Every single website on the internet is composed from a system of files and sub files that connect with each other within the website. If there was a file out in the middle of nowhere, it would not connect to the internet and users could not navigate to it. That is why proper link building is critical when organizing your web space.

Diagramming Lists

Another way to look at a diagram of a website is to make a user flow diagram. A user flow diagram maps the path a user takes when navigating through a website. This is the same example from before.

Chart B

The theoretical user using the example website can go from the homepage represented by the yellow box at the top to the graph. They are connected by a black line to indicate a link is there. Using the menu or index, they may choose to visit three landing pages, represented by the orange squares. These are the same as the files in the previous diagram. Each file has three subfolders represented by the blue squares. These are destinations in the form of web pages. You may be able to jump from subfolder to subfolder, however I did not draw in those links.

3D diagram of an example website.
Chart C

Another way to look at a website is in a three dimensional user flow like in the example above. Technically it is also two dimensional. But if you imagine the circles as spheres you will see what I mean. Each one represents the different folders and web pages contained in a website. It looks somewhat like a nerve synapse, solar system, or even the root structure of a plant, in the way the different subsystems interact.

Diagrams of the Internet

Of course the actual internet floating around out there is infinitely complex and rapidly evolving. It would take a specialist to make an accurate three dimensional rendering if the world wide web. I did find some 3D images of Twitter conversations by Martin Hawksy and James Swansburg that show you what tweets look like mapped out.

Chart D (via MASHe)

The first graph in this section is about the way Twitter users interact with each other. This is only a small portion of the web. It is a knotty labyrinth when compared to the web of a spider.

Chart E (via MASHe)

In the second visualization they made it look like a little universe, which I like because I am a science fiction fan. This is a graph of 1,622 users. The influencers are the bigger spheres near the center. When there is a promotional event, the number of tweets increases exponentially and the subsystem becomes even more heterogeneous.

A website can be expressed as a list. It can be mapped out in a list, two dimensionally or three dimensionally. In this way it is a sustainable ecosystem similar to that of a garden.

To keep your garden alive practice sustainable, organic blogging and promotional techniques.

The next Sustainability Blog will be about pests such as bots and viruses.

Facebook Comments