Simple Representations of the Complex

great video was posted on the evolution of Techmeme over time.


We were talking in the studio the other day about the difficulty in archiving the history of Techmeme in a meaningful way for this very reason. When you click on a particular time on Techmeme, it’s not nearly as dynamic as the video portrays.

Well that got me thinking about something that I have never really been able to wrap my brain around and thats OPML. I “get” what OPML is, but I just couldn’t for the life of me ever think of a good enough application for its use, for my life.

I can totally see an Aristotelian using it, trying to keep track of the classifications of things. I’ve played around with Dave’s OPML Blog (here is mine) and found that pretty fun (in the same way that using Pine for mail is kinda fun). I’ve exported my Bloglines subscriptions to an OPML file to share with others who then used it to import the file into their own readers.

Maybe OPML would be the perfect solution for archiving Techmeme. Once you input all of the stories, you could resort the trees based on time ranges, number of supporting links, most popular – all kinds of specialized relationships.

The interesting thing about this, if what I’m saying here makes any sense is the visualization factor of the OPML tree structures may just work across all of the relationships. 

Perhaps most important is that the expanding subclasses laid out visually in outline form could provide the regular archive hunter an efficient way to drill down into more in-depth information.

Techmeme is actually the kind of website we’ll be seeing more and more of in all kinds of areas. I remember my first entry point into the world of this kind of thinking when I discovered Marlow’s Blogdex. (I really should be getting bonus points here for mentioning Blogdex!)