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The Internet IBM

IBM Many Eyes After One Month 35

ReadWriteWeb writes "IBM's Many Eyes app, a 'shared visualization and discovery' service, has been running for a month now. In this article two of the IBM researchers behind Many Eyes, Martin Wattenberg and Fernanda B. Viégas, showcase some of the best visualizations so far. They also talk about the future of 'social data analysis' on the Web. Wattenberg and Viégas believe that Many Eyes is not just social software, but 'societal-scale software.' They say that Many Eyes represents a break from conventional visualization research. Traditionally, computer scientists concentrate on scaling in terms of data, making visualizations work for bigger and bigger databases. IBM's agenda with Many Eyes is to scale the audience, not the data."
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IBM Many Eyes After One Month

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  • Because otherwise, that would have been the most unintelligible headline I've ever seen on Slashdot.
  • by LiquidCoooled ( 634315 ) on Tuesday March 06, 2007 @02:10PM (#18253320) Homepage Journal
    I've found the best way to get people to look is to mark the package:
    "Private and confidential"
    and make sure everyone knows about it.

    Its from the same school of thought as the big red button.

    • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

      by Anonymous Coward
      I thought the magic phrase was 'barely legal teens'.
  • They should point this thing at MySpace and see what shows up. I'm guessing it's going to look like Walt Disney threw up in Technicolor(TM) all over the floor.
    • I'm guessing it's going to look like Walt Disney threw up in Technicolor(TM) all over the floor.

      Really? I'd figure it'd be more akin to Ted Turner funded colorization of old black and white Popeye cartoons.

      Which is, of course, a polite way of saying "like shit".

  • Twenty years ago and more, when Wordstar finished running a spell check it counted all the words, then made a table of the all words used by occurrence ranking.
  • What a coincidence (Score:5, Informative)

    by Prysorra ( 1040518 ) on Tuesday March 06, 2007 @02:21PM (#18253456)
    It must be more important than I thought - I just found out about it by accident a couple of days ago.

    In case anyone is curious - Google is also into the data-visualization market. The Gap Minder is now avaible directly as an online Google App: Link to GapMinder [google.com]

    Is there a surging market here we haven't seen yet?
  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday March 06, 2007 @03:02PM (#18254024)
    For a (very!) in-depth comparison of Swivel and Many Eyes, see http://eagereyes.org/VisCrit/Swivel-vs-Many-Eyes.h tml [eagereyes.org]
  • Swivel (Score:2, Informative)

    by chato ( 74296 )
    Swivel [swivel.com] offers a similar service. One of the best things of Swivel is that datasets are usually shared by users under a Creative Commons License.
  • by Animats ( 122034 ) on Tuesday March 06, 2007 @03:12PM (#18254122) Homepage

    Too many people are trying to make others do work for them for free. There's only so much attention to go around. And we're running out.

    Wikipedia made people think this could work, but Wikipedia today is mostly cruft. Most of the good articles were added when Wikipedia was a tenth the size it is now. What's coming in now [wikipedia.org] is mostly dreck. Existing articles suffer from ongoing churn, as people make marginal edits and others revert them, without much real progress. Jimbo got out at the peak of the bubble.

    Then there are all those "rating sites". Those suffer from a scaling problem - rating only works when the number of raters is large compared to the number of things to be rated. Otherwise, stuff gets rated up by people promoting it.

    What we need is more automation, not more eyeballs.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by mebollocks ( 798866 )
      Sorry but this is just wrong.

      "Too many people are trying to make others do work for them for free."

      Really? How so? How many is too many? Perhaps you think too many people are willing to 'work', as you call it, for free?

      There's only so much attention to go around. And we're running out.

      Now we're running out of attention. Are you sure? Better get back to doing what we used to do and watch tv then so, before this silly attention-stealing, intarweb came along then so.

      Most of the good articles were added when Wikipedia was a tenth the size it is now. What's coming in now is mostly dreck. Existing articles suffer from ongoing churn, as people make marginal edits and others revert them, without much real progress.

      Well all its "good articles" (the articles that interest most) are finished. Wikipedia never becomes finished because at all times it's a snapshot of how society and culture see

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by tezza ( 539307 )
      1. There's only so much attention to go around.

      I could not agree more. More specifically, there is only so much trained attention to go around. In the case of Many Eyes, interpreting the visualization takes a uni graduates equivalent of training. Not a degree, but similar capacity. Other slashdotters may argue to set the bar lower, but how much lower than HighSchool Grad can it be in educational terms? People boggle at the concept of Compound Interest, these mutli-layered datasets would be hard for them.

      • by Animats ( 122034 )

        More specifically, there is only so much trained attention to go around. In the case of Many Eyes, interpreting the visualization takes a uni graduates equivalent of training. Not a degree, but similar capacity. Other slashdotters may argue to set the bar lower, but how much lower than High School Grad can it be in educational terms?

        Er, yes. This just showed up in Wikipedia [wikipedia.org]: "On April 30, 1789, Spencer Shepherd, standing on the balcony of Federal Hall on Wall Street in New York, took his oath of office

  • by faloi ( 738831 ) on Tuesday March 06, 2007 @03:41PM (#18254512)
    In my head? And they're all the same?
  • Apart from the coolness factor I was not very impressed with the examples highlighted on the many eyes page. The point cloud of names within Pride and Prejudice does not appear to offer anything more than a bar graph with some interactivity would, actually it offers less than a bar graph as it is difficult to compare entities. The federal spending example had no way of seeing the line graphs side by side (stacking does not offer much at all unless there is a logical order within the stacks). The morphing b

  • I think that Swivel is doing a good job of focusing on both entertaining and useful data. While the user interface still needs to improve, the site is heading in the right direction. IBM is primarily figuring out how to evangelize their contributions to Java. While it is pretty, it is still hyper-academic with a total lack of empathy for the average Joe-user out there.

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