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November 04, 2006


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A few weeks ago I pondered out loud ( whether a media agnostic tag-cloud application existed and was used by marketers or trend watchers to predict the next big thing.

If you took this tool and ran it across all the games designers' blogs, I wonder what sort of zeitgeist it would uncover? ;)


Drama games, sociallly dyanmic character interaction. Or at least, thats what it'd get on my blog. I think it'd be interesting just from a personal standpoint, as a way of charting your personal evolution over a year or two.

I think I chatted with Mehta while I was in San Jose last March, waiting to print out my return ticket. He seems like a very down-to-earth guy for someone whose surname is phontetically similar to "meta".

It's a really interesting tool, I sure hope he open-sources it.

I actually met Mehta at a loft party in NYC last summer. He's got some great ideas rolling around in that head. Only thing that's creepy is how much he loves his cats.

Did you see the cool application he put it to outside of his own posts?

Tag clouds for presidential speeches. Biggest word in all of GW Bush's speeches? Terrorist. In one of Bill Clinton's it was actually welfare! Scroll the slider and watch Mexico get more or less attention over time. It's an amazing use of the tool.

Actually it was the presidential cloud I saw first when someone sent me the link at work to it. It is very fucking cool - but then I became more generally intrigued by the tech itself, which is why I blogged about that.
Today I was imagining the idea of having a flash-based tag cloud where the words are acutally floating around the screen in a more literal 'cloud' with the most common ones being larger and slower moving, and the less common ones being smaller and flitting about very rapidly. It would be basically the same - but with graphics! And as we all know, graphics makes everything better!

The whole tagging/folksonomy thing is fascinating.

I've seen a flash implementation of a headline aggregator that uses larger or smaller bricks of color to indicate how many outlets are carrying a story but I can't find the link at the moment. In a similar vein however is, grouping music and movies by similarity and dumping the result as a navigable flash map of nodes.

There's a really in depth breakdown of how tag cloud systems work and how they might evolve over at Joe Lamantia's site (don't know him, just found it while googling stuff like this)

This was going to drive me nuts until I found it. The aggregator I was referring to was built by Stamen Design

They have some amazing visualization systems up and running. The one for digg is freaky to watch in action.

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