Delicious, 4397 bookmarks later

I posted my first bookmark to delicious on 7/13/06, back when it was called del.icio.us. In spite of having changed owner a couple of times, and survived a couple of not very fortunate redesigns, delicious might be the online service that I have most consistently used to aggregate annotated content from the web. Gone are the days when I interacted with it socially; most of the users in my network haven’t used it in a very long time, but I still find pleasure using it to collect interesting links and track my browsing preferences by exploring my data. Unlike other services from that era, delicious has kept available a simple API without forcing any horrendous authentication protocols on their users. This has allowed me to keep my delicious tags page alive —a simple sketch where I render all my tags using size and color to visualize frequency of usage. At this point, it’s pretty clear what my favorite webpages and websites are about.

delicious

I wonder if any knowledge can be inferred from the tag diversity expressed by an active user in a given amount of time. Does it reflect something about the user’s vocabulary as well as the diversity of their interests? Is there something in common about a group of users that grow their collections of tags and bookmarks at similar rates even if the bookmarks and tags have nothing in common? Can this behavior be evidence of a personal and/or philosophical disposition from users towards knowledge? In section 2.2.2 of Mr. Palomar (The cheese museum), Italo Calvino conjectures that a proclivity towards or against sample diversity will influence —and even shape— the nature of the knowledge acquired from a given experience, in his case, the quest for truth in the appreciation of a particular cheese.

If you have been a delicious user, you can visit my delicious tags page and pass along your username as a parameter. My page will return a nicely crafted version of your delicious data, perhaps helping you learn something you didn’t know about yourself. Here are some examples:

http://black.mitplw.com/delicious/?user=blackaller,
http://black.mitplw.com/delicious/?user=vvva,
http://black.mitplw.com/delicious/?user=buza,
http://black.mitplw.com/delicious/?user=burnto,
http://black.mitplw.com/delicious/?user=tang,
http://black.mitplw.com/delicious/?user=golan,
http://black.mitplw.com/delicious/?user=believekevin,
http://black.mitplw.com/delicious/?user=victoreremita,
http://black.mitplw.com/delicious/?user=kylemcdonald,
http://black.mitplw.com/delicious/?user=arikan,
http://black.mitplw.com/delicious/?user=reas.

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