Don’t just Google it! First, let’s talk! by Jon Udell

Asking questions in conversation has become problematic. For example, try saying this out loud: “I wonder when Martin Luther King was born?” If you ask that online, a likely response is: “Just Google it!” Maybe with a snarky link: http://lmgtfy.com/?q=when was martin luther king born?

Asking in conversation is frowned upon too. Why ask us when you could ask Siri or Alexa to ask Google?

There’s a kind of shaming going on here. We are augmented with superpowers, people imply, you’re an idiot to not use them.

When I was younger my parents bought a complete set of the Encyclopedia Britannica. I supposed they got tired of answering my incessant questions. With a shelf of information at my disposal, they resorted to “Look it up!”. I think “Google It” is a modern version of that phrase.

Looking something up because you need an exact answer for a paper, etc. makes sense. But I agree with Jon that the “Just Google it!” response has become a barrier to conversation.

I use a mapping app when I am travelling to unfamiliar places and being lost is costly. I don’t use a mapping app for my hikes and walks in unfamiliar parks. If I use a mapping app on my hikes with my wife, I would miss out on conversations with my wife and seeing all the wonderful things around me.

I am grateful to be augmented by escalators, GPS wayfinders, and tuners. But I want to use these powers in ways that complement my own.

via BoffoSocko.

User Interface to Indicate Posting Activity by Chris AldrichChris Aldrich (Boffo Socko)

Today I saw a note that led me to the Internet Archive which I know has recently had a redesign. I’m not sure if the functionality I saw was part of this redesign, but it’s pretty awesome. I’m not sure quite what to call this sort of circular bar chart given what it does, but circular widthmap seems vaguely appropriate.

Instead of using color gradations to indicate a relative number of posts, the UI is measuring things via width in ever increasing concentric circles. The innermost circle indicates the root domain and successive levels out add additional paths from my site. Because I’m using dated archive paths, there’s a level of circle by year (2019, 2018, 2017, etc.) then another level outside that by months (April 2019, March 2019, etc.), and finally the outermost circle which indicates individual posts. As a result, the width of a particular year or month indicates relatively how active that time frame was on my website (or at least how active Archive.org thinks it was based on its robot crawler.)

I enjoyed the idea of these heatmaps and charting. I added the sparkline graph last week after I saw them on Chris’s website. I may create a separate web site page to keep these. I don’t know how useful they are, but they are just cool. I would also love a way to display some of the JetPack graphs.

These are the yearly JetPack stats from 2010, the year Automattic first offered the, to 2019.

2013 was the best year for this website.

But I get more “responses” that I did in earlier years. I suspect more of these are from semantic responses on other platforms, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram since. It’s, and the time I started using some of the IndieWeb software.

Below is the Internet Archive graph for 2018, compared to 2012. Traffic has fallen off.

2013 Internet Archive Circular Widthmaps
Graph
2018 Internet Archive Circular Widthmaps