November 10th, 2006

First post on this blog

Hereby I declare this blog as officially OPENED!

I am myself curious where it will lead me — my motivation is to share my thoughts, discoveries and experiments I will do while working on my Master’s thesis in Interface Design at FH Potsdam with you. But occasionally, I might also just post related information or reviews of things I discover. Sharing is caring!

Over the last year, I have been working on a lot of different stuff on a pretty broad basis and now it’s time to cristallize out a the key issue I want to deal with. If someone asks me right now what I am working on, I just say “feeds and tags”. Which is true to some degree but of course a bit shortened.

Maybe some background first: My general approach to Interface Design is to study how statistics and machine learning approaches (such as clustering and neural networks) and visualization can be combined to create novel interfaces for personal information management. Conceptually, I think both the desktop metaphor as well as the page-based browing approach found in the web do not really suit the complex interactions between digital data we deal with on a daily basis. So I think a lot in terms of a multi-dimensional, interconnected snippet systems to store, retrieve and communicate information. Actually, you could say I work on user interface visions for the semantic web.

So currently, I research a lot about tagging systems. To put it short, tags are just free-form keywords you associate with data. In a way, this is the weakest, but therefore also least restrictive information architecture you could use. I believe tags have the potential to revolutionize our way of dealing with everyday data: they allow associative, multi-dimensional and bottom-up organisation of data — a great alternative to folder structures. That is, if we provide the right tools to work with them in a fluid manner. This has been one part of my research and I will post some more insights an experiments about that soon.

Second, I am trying to find out what role webfeeds (delivered via RSS or other formats) will play in the future. They provide a way to subscribe to information on the web and consume it in a special reader, your email client, web browser or portable devices. Like a newspaper subscription, they can help you keep track of stuff you do not want to actually search for every day. A very promising technology, which is currently, however, only used intensively by a small geek elite. Again, potentially an interface design problem.

Other important topics have been context, time and information sharing. You see it’s getting broad already.

So to put it short: in the end, I might design a novel kind of newsreader demonstrating my interface ideas for these new technologies and concepts. I’ll keep you posted.

2 Responses to 'First post on this blog'

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  1. bastian
    November 14th, 2006 at 11:04 am

    hi moritz

    nice to see you blogging now, and i’m really curios what you’ll be putting up here with timer. best regards from your old hometown ;)

  2. Well-formed data » 5 years of well-formed-data
    November 10th, 2011 at 3:04 pm

    […] years ago, I posted the first entry on this blog. I think it is safe to say, it’s been a wild ride. I know lots of you who read this have been […]

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