Tuesday, August 09, 2005

Interestingness!

Flickr: Explore interesting photos around Flickr: "Besides being a five syllable word suitable for tongue twisters, it is also an amazing new Flickr Feature.

There are lots of things that make a photo 'interesting' (or not) in the Flickr. Where the clickthroughs are coming from; who comments on it and when; who marks it as a favorite; its tags and many more things which are constantly changing. Interestingness changes over time, as more and more fantastic photos and stories are added to Flickr."
Not surprisingly, a single search/browse (and sort) algorithm has never been adequate. Some are looking for the core literature, the most often cited. Others are looking for something overlooked, perhaps the most recent and entirely uncited work. Others just want to come in and browse the shelves to see what might be "interesting."

Lorcan Dempsey noted this new feature of the Flickr service. "The characterization of interestingness, based on environment knowledge and user behavior, is becoming a major area of investigation and will become more so as we can find, manage and share more types of material on the web." He goes on to say suggest that the growing differentiation that is developing may be related to the materials being handled. I suspect it has more to do with the user than the materials. My goal as a user might drive me directly to the classic, highly cited work when I want to write a paper for an assignment but lead me to just browse the shelves when I have a bit of spare time to let loose my curiosity.