Today, I took some time off to experiment with a couple of Web 2.0 mashups as I'm putting together the first part of my final research paper on Social Networking Analysis (SNA) for my thesis and some of the stuff I found exciting were Site Graphs, aka Blog Graphs and a Flickr Graphing tool which is flash-based. I point you towards an energetic lady who keep spreading much Skype love -- Dina Mehta where she's already blogged what the Flickr Graphing tool does and believe me it's amazing! I like to call it the Flickr Gene Pool.. but then thats just me :) Site Graphs defines the structure of websites and blogs as defined in HTML while visualizing the hierarchy of HTML tags in a graph. Salem who's based in Swizterland developed this lovely visualizer as a Java applet and I decided to test-drive it by graphing the Global Voices Online blog along with some of the GV co-founders and editors. On a side note, after having my desktop processor hang on me a couple of times especially while the GV blog was being graphed (took like 20 minutes), I'd suggest that if you're going to be graphing something like Technorati, Bloglines or a search engine like Google, then make sure you have atleast a 512 RAM and run the process on a latop. With that said, let's go straight to blogs I got graphed (click on the images to view a larger version):
GV's blog in all its glory:
the co-founders of GV: Ethan Zuckerman
Versus Rebecca Mackinnon
the managing editor of GV: Rachel Rawlins
2 of GV's Regional Editors: Neha Viswanathan
for South Asia & Georgia Popplewell
for the Carribean Here's the key to the tag colors:blue: for links (the A tag)red: for tables (TABLE, TR and TD tags)green: for the DIV tagviolet: for images (the IMG tag)yellow: for forms (FORM, INPUT, TEXTAREA, SELECT and OPTION tags)orange: for linebreaks and blockquotes (BR, P, and BLOCKQUOTE tags)black: the HTML tag, the root nodegray: all other tags
I found that Neha's blog was just second to GV's blog in terms of the penetration of links and we're talking some major link clusters! Rachel's blog was more unique in that she uses more block quotes than anyone else I've compared, Neha's blog and Georgia's use block quotes but not as much as Rachel's, now what sets Georgia's blog apart from all the other blogs is that she's got a higher image tag count. It seems that Rebecca's blog uses a complex tag structure and no tables while Ethan has a fine set of link clusters than anyone else! I'd like to run more graphs on their feeds and those of other GV editors and authors in the days to come, more patterns I have and the better results I achieve. One of the main reasons I like using Site Graphs to analyze blogs although its got a downside (explained below) is that I'm more interested in block quotes, links and images than any other tag. ;-)
of using Site Graphs for graphing blogs is that although it displays the patterns of sites one links to, the nodes are missing some detailed SNA information. I've tagged the GV blog graphs on flickr along with a host of other blogs as "blogsasgraphs"
and encourage you to do the same and share your blog graphs with the rest of the world :) You can find more site and blog graphs on flickr over at the graph-site-blog cluster.
Feel free to drop in your analysis of the above graphs as a comment here.