mandag, april 28, 2008

information visualized

Jonathan Harris' and Daily Life's project Universe gives the net user a hint of what's in store for us. By a more interactive and socially intuitive approach and utilization of the metadata available out there he has created a fascinating modern take on 'constellations'. Mr. Harris believes that internet is in its infancy now, stumbling, drooling and learning the ways of the new world. There are so much gaps and undiscovered interrelations hidden and by draping it in an ancient metaphor of the night sky and its stars one suddenly discover new ways of reading and perceiving information.

For now, searching means googling and finding information means reading by scanning. It's words, traditional linear reading with the occasional picture accompanying it. By playing around with the variety of choices in how you want to view your searches in Mr. Harris Universe application tool it all becomes more visual and intuitive.

It's an indefinite play with information. Search for Norway in the past week and keywords from the digital sphere float across the night sky and touch F16 and you'll see other relevant keywords and key images flock around it (we just bought ourselves new jets from the Swedes today...). It's a great way to tap into the pulse of the world. And it gives me connotations of the future as portrayed in Minority Report and The Fifth Element. Cool.

tirsdag, april 08, 2008

What are you doing right now?

I have used Twitter for a while, and it's a neat little net app. Only a few of my friends use it, so it's a limited social networking device for me personally. It bears resemblance to the status field in Facebook, and what is fascinating is how 'short is the new loud'. Twitter restricts its answers to the 1000 $ question to 140 characters, 20 less than a conventional SMS.

So the idea is to tell your social network what you are doing, keep updated on what they are doing and do it short. It's useful for giving links and top-of-the-head whims to your friends in an easy interactive way, either using your mobile or the net.

Nonetheless, the question to be answered reminds me of my mother calling me on the phone and asking me what I'm up to and how my life is going. Of course, she does not have Twitter updates nor Facebook account, but she does swing by my Flickr photostream once in a while.

So why this need to egocast my life ongoings to my friends (and the world in principle) when I find the question rather haunting when posted by my parents? One thing which does ring true though would be if Twitter was around in the eighties - that would have saved my parents the question.