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Web2.0 vs. the 4th Dimension
December 9, 2007 8:03 AM   Subscribe

Miomi (beta) is taking all the world’s information—including the personal history of as many people as possible—and putting it all in a big fat timeline.

Miomi's stated goals are to
  • conquer the fourth dimension – time
  • move oral history online
  • and create a user-generated history of the world.
posted by carsonb (18 comments total) 5 users marked this as a favorite

 
Ooh. No one has added the part about Noah and the dinosaurs yet! I'll just take care of that right now ...
posted by itchylick at 8:17 AM on December 9, 2007


All of the world's information? Has their hosting company been informed?

Interesting idea, but at the moment it seems a little thin.
posted by WPW at 8:22 AM on December 9, 2007


It is a little thin if you think of it as wikipedia or an encyclopedia in timeline form—the site is young, and there aren't a ton of users yet. (I thought MeFites might make a fine addition to the userbase, hence all this.) Consider also that you can use this as a sort of family-oriented MySpace. Make your own timelines, upload pictures and videos, write essays about vacations or good days (or bad days). Stay connected with the ones you love via little blue lines. Or something.
posted by carsonb at 8:30 AM on December 9, 2007


If people want to know what I'm doing minute to minute they are just going to have to read my blog constantly......
posted by HuronBob at 8:31 AM on December 9, 2007


conquer the fourth dimension – time

Programming a largely useless app for the sake of programming a Web 2.0 app and having the most ostentatious goal I've seen? I am going to be cranky for an hour because of this.
posted by scabrous at 8:50 AM on December 9, 2007 [3 favorites]


This kind of temporal microcontent has a lot of potential. It's actually close to an idea I was trying to convince my company to run with last year or so; my only disappointment is that it doesn't seem to support any kind of RESTful API for pulling or pushing information. These days, a service like this falls into the "interesting novelty" category until someone figures out how to leverage it to populate the bevy of "Things that happened today" and "Where were you when..." features around the web.
posted by verb at 8:53 AM on December 9, 2007


My entire personal history? Everything?

"Everything. OK! I'll talk! In third grade, I cheated on my history exam. In fourth grade, I stole my uncle Max's toupee and I glued it on my face when I was Moses in my Hebrew School play. In fifth grade, I knocked my sister Edie down the stairs and I blamed it on the dog.

"When my mom sent me to the summer camp for fat kids and then they served lunch I got nuts and I pigged out and they kicked me out.

"But the worst thing I ever done - I mixed a pot of fake puke at home and then I went to this movie theater, hid the puke in my jacket, climbed up to the balcony and then, t-t-then, I made a noise like this: hua-hua-hua-huaaaaaaa, and then I dumped it over the side, all over the people in the audience. And then, this was horrible, all the people started getting sick and throwing up all over each other. I never felt so bad in my entire life."
posted by breezeway at 8:53 AM on December 9, 2007 [1 favorite]


wikipedia in timeline form

That seems to be what they are trying to do. I'm not to convinced it's a good idea.

Timelines are best when specific events/people are emphasized to get an idea across. If you just put everything and anything in there, it's a mess that doesn't tell us anything new, other than a banal list of facts arranged in chronological order.
posted by stbalbach at 8:56 AM on December 9, 2007


Visited a banal list of facts today.
posted by weapons-grade pandemonium at 9:07 AM on December 9, 2007 [1 favorite]


I am going to be cranky for an hour because of this.

Now you can record the beginning and end of that hour, and share them with friends!
posted by gimonca at 10:32 AM on December 9, 2007


I like purple pepsi the best.
posted by DenOfSizer at 10:35 AM on December 9, 2007


carsonb: I know it's early days yet and won't be thin forever, I didn't mean to dismiss it, just to say I'll be checking back on it in a couple of months to see how it's getting along.

I think it's a fascinating idea but somewhat confused. It's not going to be anything like "Wikipedia in timeline form" - that would only be the case if Wikipedia allowed you to start pages about yourself, your pets and what happened at your 12th birthday party. It combines big-H History, oral (social/people's/bottom-up) history and personal history without really being clear on why. Clarity may emerge with time, and I wish them well. I will certainly check back.
posted by WPW at 11:19 AM on December 9, 2007


"Miomi"? What the fuck kind of name is that? I note they don't bother to explain it even on their About page. I guess it's one of those cool Web 2.0 "if you have to ask, you'll never understand" names.

Oh, wait, they say "Rather than make you read the story in the old linear style, why not check out the timelines here:"

...except that none of the links goes anywhere. Bah.
posted by languagehat at 11:29 AM on December 9, 2007 [1 favorite]


the old linear style

I thought out a theory or methodology of chronological history. seems this is what these folks are trying to do. Thing is Intel agencies do this now, sure this site wants "everything" but this could turn into a huge botttle neck...like well in 1850, there is (was) only so much info to be complied and complied today. were as today there is so much info, IMO the "lattice work" to hold the info is almost impossible to constrct or even navigate if constructed.
posted by clavdivs at 11:50 AM on December 9, 2007


What the fuck kind of name is that?

oh, my.
posted by lullabyofbirdland at 12:03 PM on December 9, 2007


all the world’s information

Not yet.
posted by StickyCarpet at 12:24 PM on December 9, 2007


languagehat: I too got caught up reading the about page and the faq at first, and frustrating they are. Haply, this beta site seems to have left the chud for last, concentrating on making work what they built the site to do. Which it does! It is early on, and thin, but there are some cool timelines to read. And building your own is stupid-easy, yet gratifying.
posted by carsonb at 12:24 PM on December 9, 2007


It strikes me that they should do some database mining just to seed the site with information, providing some sort of value for people to enter in their personal histories (look, I was doing X at the exact same time that famous person Y was doing famous thing Z!) even before they have a rich database of personal information. The dates pages on Wikipedia would be a perfect place to start.

I think this is an important feature for any site whose intended primary value hinges upon a significant amount of user-contributed content. There needs to be a reason (beyond a desire to contribute to something potentially useful in the future) for people to contribute content.
posted by ErWenn at 2:36 PM on December 9, 2007


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