What AM I Seeing?
This visualization developed by Christopher Baker is titled “My Map”. It ‘walks through’ a person’s address book and archived emails to present a relational network map of his/her connection with other email contacts.
The visual is presented using circular topology diagram with each contact placed along the edge of a circle and curved and/or straight lines connecting those contacts.
- The lines denote exchange of emails between contacts.
- Intensity of the connecting line represents high volume of emails exchanged in that relationship.
- Parsing through every email in the archive, ‘TO:’, ‘FROM:’ and ‘CC:’ of each email is examined to identify contacts and each contact’s details such as picture and name is then picked from the address book.
- Placing the pictures and names of all contacts along the edge of the circle, lines denoting who sent the email to who (both recipient and copy recipients) fill the circle with bright colors.
- The visual could be a small circle with few connecting lines, representing small number of contacts and email exchange (see left side of Figure 1) or a large circle with numerous lines indicating large number of contacts and lots of emails exchanged (see right side of Figure 1).
How Is This Beneficial To Me?
My Map, gives an overview of the relationship between you and your family, friends, schoolmates, co-workers etc. With many thousands of emails in the archive, one cannot fathom the innumerable relationships he/she has developed over a period of time by simply reading through each of these thousands of emails. However, presented in this visual format, it gives you an eye-catching overview of all the relationships, as it developed through exchange of emails over a period of time. The visual gives you an opportunity to revisit the past, allowing you to reminisce the tide and turn of your relationships over time, particularly certain periods of time in the past when the intensity of relationship with certain individuals peaked or petered.
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