To pay attention to “minute particulars” is to notice your life as it passes, before it passes. But it is also, I realized, something more. By taking over their little daily affairs—and not just talking them over, but talking them over and over, again and again (the same story in brief, then in full, the same stories one house, then another)—the characters in Emma were doing nothing less than attaching themselves to life. They were weaving the web of community, one strand of conversation at a time. They were creating the world, in the process of talking about it.
That sounds to me a lot like social networking, which reminds me of this.