16 January 2006

Biography on the Tree of Life

let's compile an exhaustive list
of everyone who's been mentioned on the Internet
sorted according to the number of mentions [eg 1997]

and starting with #1
(most mentioned, eg 'Elvis')
let's go to their Wikipedia biography
and re-edit it for view-scaling

so that the most-significant fact is listed first
2nd-most, second
(this is easier said than done)

eg James Joyce
when view-scaled down to two words
is usually "Irish writer"

with acclaim, notoriety, and difficulty
following close behind

now for these discrete facts
since we lack a well-behaved general ontology
we'll substitute ensembles of code fragments
(and their associated units of measure)

so that we can select any subset of biographies
and count the occurrences of each ensemble
and rank these by how commonly they're cited

and in theory
we can extend this process
to all humans
and their entire lives

annotating every event
great or small