Data visualization offers engaging ways to view and interpret information. Our favorite network tool this past year does just that, offering users a whole new way to browse Wikipedia. Wikiverse imagines Wikipedia entries as a series of linked objects in space, arranged according to how closely related they are to one another. Wikiverse is perhaps most enjoyable when it reveals the unexpected connections between Wikipedia entries. In doing so, this unique tool exemplifies the ways that data visualization can help us engage with ideas and data.
Wikiverse is a new tool that provides users with a whole new way to browse Wikipedia and explore topics of interest. Created by data visualization engineer, Owen Cornec, Wikiverse allows visitors to visualize and explore links between Wikipedia subjects. The size of the Wikiverse can be controlled by the user, allowing users to explore either one, two, or five percent of Wikipedia. From here, users can explore any topic and see how this topic is linked to others. A list of related topics will appear on the right hand side of the site, or visitors can view the topic as a star in a three-dimensional galaxy. Related topics appear close by and are arranged into clusters, such as Art, Biology, or Geography. As visitors click on stars, full definitions and additional links appear on the left-hand side of the screen. Wikiverse provides a riveting experience, and highlights the interconnections between topics that, at first blush, seem entirely unrelated.