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Wiki Spoor

WikiSpoor is a name I just coined for a new concept (new unless someone else thought of it first, in which case I apologies for re-inventing the wheel)

The idea is that every visitor to a page leaves spoor, that can be useful in classifying the page. If you know how many people hit the page, and how long they stayed, and if they edited, then the smell will be strong; the page is clearly popular. If they didn't stay long, they will leave little trace.

So far so identical to WebStatistics, right?

What's different about WikiSpoor, though, is that it is people focused and not topic focused. An individual leaves a trail, and so do groups of people. By looking at the WikiSpoor of an individual you can build up a picture of their interests. Over time the WikiSpoor of a group of people represents a "group memory", and may form a useful navigation tool for a new member of the group, or someone interested in their activities. People who are frequent visitors and contributors will have a strong smell; those who only dabble will get stronger deodourant.

Of course it could all get a bit circular, as people follow other peoples spoor, and end up leaving spoor of their own....

-- CrawfordCurrie - 04 Jul 2005

This would need proper implementation of sessions, wouldn't it? wink

-- FranzJosefSilli - 04 Jul 2005

No, this is not to do with sessions, it is to do with activity over a longer period of time.

Now that you mention it, spoor would have to fade over time, I guess.

-- CrawfordCurrie - 05 Jul 2005

Hm, WikiSpoor sounds somehow similar to Microsofts Stuff I've Seen?

-- FranzJosefSilli - 05 Jul 2005

Yes, close! Good link, thanks - I'd never heard of that before. Only, I want to do it by group as well as by individual.

-- CrawfordCurrie - 05 Jul 2005

And it even uses FacetedNavigation! wink

  • Wow, how ugly can it be? They try to make searching sexy and hot, and make it look really awful. I thought this was one of Microsoft's strategic directions. -- ArthurClemens - 06 Jul 2005

-- JosMaccabiani - 05 Jul 2005

Did see a demonstration of SIS done by Susan Dumais as a closing Keynote at the I-KNOW '05. It remembered me of our latest navigation and searching discussions. WikiSpoor is a generalisation of their concept of "Personal Information Retrieval", it's more like "Stuff We've Seen". smile

-- FranzJosefSilli - 05 Jul 2005

Since no one else has mentioned it, I thought I'd point out that WikiSpoor is an extension of what's commonly referred to "swarm intelligence" (refs 1, 2) and more specifically, Wikipedia:Ant_colony_optimization.

From my understanding of this idea, it would seem most relevant as a variation on "what's hot" lists that shows what topics are being viewed most frequently.

Also, to make WikiSpoor fully implement ant colony optimization, the WikiSpoor "smell" would need to fade over time.

-- LynnwoodBrown - 05 Jul 2005

Somewhat related (but another concept) is in http://del.icio.us the display of the number of people linking to a particular site. The more people link, the darker pink the background color becomes.

-- ArthurClemens - 06 Jul 2005

Which in turn is somewhat related to the tag voting of the TagMePlugin. Topics with more votes show up on top.

Using the "group memory" to determine popular topics is an interesting concept.

-- PeterThoeny - 10 Mar 2006

Topic attachments
I Attachment History Action Size Date Who Comment
PNGpng CHI-TopviewAnonColor.png r1 manage 37.8 K 2005-07-05 - 10:06 JosMaccabiani Stuff I've Seen FacetedNavigation
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Topic revision: r10 - 2006-03-10 - PeterThoeny
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