The group work space sharing group – Quasipartikel have produced a lot of interesting work the last few years from projector installations to data visualizations. Coming from this collective, is the visual knowledge browser project called ASK KEN™ by Michael Aufreiter. Employing a node link diagram visualization using Processing.js, users can navigate through the large amount of topics from Freebase – which according to the site, boasts nearly 22 million entities ( single person, place , or thing ). Freebase is accessed through the Ken Ruby Freeware API Wrapper – which looks like another project that found its roots at the Quasipartikel lab.
Searching for a topic results in a list of suggested topics to help the user decide which route to go. Once an initial topic is selected, a visual representation of that topic and its connections is drawn as a stylized node circle chart. Users can navigate connected topics now, by selecting a section of that node to explore, watching the diagram bounce and extend out as new connections are added for exploration.
Although the project claims to be “far from complete” , it certainly provides a highly engaging and beautiful way to visualize large sets of connected data. So go ahead, and just ASK KEN™.