mapping the web infome

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My mother sent me this link to Lisa Jevbratt's fascinating Web Infome Imager.

The Infome Imager is a software for creating visualizations of the World Wide Web. The software allows the user to create "crawlers" (software robots, which could be thought of as automated Web browsers) that gather data from the Web, and it provides methods for visualizing the collected data. Some of the functionality of the Infome Imager software is similar to a search engine such as Google, but with some significant differences. Those differences shifts the software's functionality from being merely a tool for finding information on the Web to an art project which is generating new understandings of the Web. The Infome Imager crawler collects "behind the scenes" data such as the length of a page, when a page was created, what network the page resides on, the colors used in a page and other design elements of a page etc. It scratches on the surface and glances down into the subconscious of the Web in hopes to reveal its inherent structure, in order to create new understandings of its technical, aesthetic and political functionalities.

Using the interface on this web site, the user sets parameters for the crawler and the visualization. The software allows the user to manipulate the crawler's behavior in several ways. The user decides what data the crawler should collect and how the data should be visualized. S/He can choose different methods - ways of "placing" and translating the data into color - for visualizing the data. The result of the crawling process is a visualization which also functions as an interface linking to all the sites the crawler visited. The visualizations/interfaces created with the Infome Imager are collected on the Infome Imager Web site, and can be viewed there by the creator as well as by other users.

I hesitated about blogging this, since it doesn't strike me as a site that can handle a large amount of traffic heading its way. On the other hand, the limited number of comments here in the past few days may mean that my 15 minutes of fame are over, and that I'm unlikely to drive much traffic towards anyone. :-)

(My visualizations of this blog are #s 2051 and 2052, respectively, in the "manifestations" list.)

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Obviously, I stick to plans and schedules like a door greased with WD-40. I promised blogging responses to Language and Read More

Obviously, I stick to plans and schedules like a door greased with WD-40. I promised blogging responses to Language and Read More

1 Comment

Hey Liz. (We're still reading so please keep writing. ;-) ) This is pretty interesting, but I've seen a lot of cool visualization tools for the web and feel like this one falls half way between utility and art... or maybe I'm missing something...

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This page contains a single entry published on November 19, 2002 9:03 PM.

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