Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Long posts make up for lost time

Today is a work day. Like many work days, I didn’t much anything to do for the first hour or so. Some minor filing, but that’s it. I’m currently running on about four and a half hours of sleep (this is where I start grumbling about the people who live directly above us and their apparent love of riverdance) so I’ve yet to get the energy to start working on non-work things that are still important (i.e. homework and study guides and the like). Instead, I will spend time looking at things on the Internet.

I’m fairly ridiculously exhausted right now. My writing is even more rambling than usual.

Anyway, as you might now, I am a big fan of Relevant Media group. Especially the podcast, but I also subscribe to the magazine and peruse the website from time to time. I was actually doing this last thing just a little while ago. I was reading the archives of their Questions of the Day, and I came across this one from the beginning of September: What’s Your Favorite Random Site?

I had actually answered this one a while back. During that period I kept geeking out over how awesome the Caves of Lascaux are, so I posted the link to its interactive tour of the caves (which, incidentally, is http://www.lascaux.culture.fr/#/en/02_00.xml).

When I was reading the answers to this particular question-of-the-day, I came across this comment:

input a site and then look at it. it's pointless.”

I didn't plan on checking that website out, but the comment directly under that said that that particular website “ IS AMAZING. You made my org's website BEAUTIFUL!”

So I decided to see what it was all about.

It’s a fairly simple page design: in big letters it says:

Webpages as Graphs

With a centered box directly under it, wherein one could input a site.

“What” (I thought) “shall I input? I don’t have a website. Oh yes, I have a blog.”

(Remember, of course, that I’m running on four and a half hours of sleep and my brain isn’t completely connected to the rest of me. Don't judge me.)

With a vague sense of trepidation, I typed into the box:


and clicked “Show Me The Graph!”

It was a little bit anticlimactic, as instead of showing me the graph it took me to a loading page where it gave me the opportunity to partake in a short study about Swine Flu.

So I clicked “OK - Now show me the graph!” (but not after opening the swine flu study in a different window and taking the survey. It’s not graded, but if it was I woulda aced that baby)

I was expecting a typical line graph or something that I could copy and paste on my blog. Instead, there was a growing series of dots.

And then…wait, is that a flower?

You know, this actually is quite pretty.

The final result?

My pretty little blog is actually a pretty little vine with pretty little flowers.

You can find a key to what the colors mean at the webpage.

The author of this applet is a professor at Stanford who has several other really cool conceptual art projects going on, like 365 Special Days and One Thousand Paintings.
And once again: Webpages As Graphs

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